5 Celebrity Men That you Thought Were Black

Written by Ariel Wallace

1. Dwayne “The Rock Johnson”, Wrestler , Actor, and model is actually Canadian, and his mother is Samoan with looks like his who cares? The Rock was named Sexiest Man Alive back in 2016 for a reason. He surely still add sugar to my coffee.

2.Terrance Howard

Not the beautiful hazel eye bandit that everyone loves! He stole our hearts with Empire, not he’s making us guess what he is? Terrence’s parents are actually both Bi- racial. Terrance parents both have blue eyes. Beautiful genes flowed to such a handsome Man.

3.Jim Jones

The former Diplomat member who America loves, is bound by another race. Jim’s mother is actually Aruban and his later father Puerto Rican. Can you say double the trouble! Nothing like a Latin lover.

4.Boris Kodjoe, this tall glass of water is actually German and Austrian. Speaking German is a plus! Big ups for Nicole Ari Parker snatching him up in time. Happy 11th Anniversary to the beautiful couple!

5.Swizz Beatz, The Rapper, Producer, and lyrical genius. Is ravishing with his exquisite taste! Go cutie, ” you hit the hammer on the head” with this one. Turns out he is actually Puerto Rican.

Hot up-and-Coming Fashion Trends of Spring 2017

Written by Salina Jivani

You’re pouring through magazines, scoping out your favorite department stores and eyeing every woman up and down (surreptitiously of course!) trying to uncover this year’s most happening style. It’s early yet, but a fashionista can’t get started soon enough, right?

How do we know? Because we’re doing it too! With 2017 already underway, we’re eager to uncover its chicest styles—and ASAP. So we took a quick peek at this year’s spring runway designs and collaborated a list of five easy ways you (ahem, and we) can get an early start on 2017’s spring wardrobe.

Choose vibrant colors

This year, you’ll notice a shift from the neutral, “safe” colors like black and taupe as we dab with more vivid ones such as shades of pinks, bronze, reds and yellows. The great thing is that these hues work with nearly every skin tone and can help you stand out in pictures and apart from the crowd.

Flaunt those legs

Get that cardio in early this year, because spring 2017 is the season of legs! Dresses and skirts will be either mini or mid length, meaning you’ll be baring a lot more skin just shortly after weathering these colder (calorie-laden) winter months.

Accessorize, accessorize, accessorize!

If you’ve already gotten a good grasp on accessorizing and aren’t yet ready to see those long necklaces and arm candy disappear around the bend of 2016, you’re in luck. This year, you’ll see even more of an emphasis on accessorizing. So gather your treasures and get ready to use them in more fabulous, creative ways!

Be comfortable

Luckily for those of us who’ve grown accustomed to the comfort of sweats and leggings in the winter, spring styles won’t require a drastic transition. This year is all about comfort, comfort, comfort with flowing pants, loose clothing and even (gasp!) PJs on the streets! So long as your look is put together and not sloppy, this is one season you’ll be able to get away with a lot of the “comfort crimes” that haven’t been so openly embraced in years past.

More 80s style

Fads, as we know, are cyclical and pull from trends of previous decades. This year, we’re veering away from the 90s and shifting toward 80s styles, which sport leather pants and miniskirts and nod to tops that emphasize more prominent shoulders.

If you’re excited about what’s to come and can’t wait to get your closet in order for an onslaught of new wardrobe goodies, consider doing an early spring cleaning by gathering your gently used clothing and donating them to organizations that will make the most use of your contributions. Check out our earlier post of best places to donate your items here. In the meantime, let’s give a quick cheer to 2017—off to a spectacular start with great styles and comfort in mind, it doesn’t get any better than that!

Is Your Partner a Compulsive Cheat?

Written by Salina Jivani

No one ever steps into a relationship thinking that one day, they may be the victim of cheating or infidelity. It’s one of those things you simply can’t imagine happening to you, but unfortunately, people fall prey to cheaters all the time.

With Facebook and online apps making it easier than ever to mingle and meet, it’s no wonder all of a sudden finding your beau in the arms of another is an all too common, but still devastating, experience.

And maybe you’re aware of a slip or discrepancy on his part that took place years ago, but your partner has vowed since then that it’ll never, ever, ever happen again. And you believe him. But how can you tell whether he’s really cleaned up his act, or just preparing for an encore?

These three telltale signs reveal the characteristics of someone who is compelled to cheat…and more than just once.

Your relationship is an emotional roller coaster…and they love it

Most people are very content, even placid with having a smooth sailing, emotionally stable relationship. But run, run as fast as you can if you’re with someone who seems to thrive off the constant highs and lows of your relationship battles while you’re left to feel emotionally drained and exhausted. Why? Because people who enjoy these kinds of thrills (in this case, the thrill of making and breaking up) are usually those most susceptible to seeking the thrill of an affair or an extramarital relationship.

They have a fear of being lonely

No ones like feeling left out or alone, but cheaters often have an overwhelming fear of becoming lonely. So to create a sense of security, they keep their prospects open, seeking a constant supply of love and support from multiple people just in case one of their relationships do go awry. In their short sightedness, however, what they don’t realize is once they get caught, they’ll end up losing it all and in turn inviting the very loneliness they fear.

They’re not content

As humans, we always yearn for that one thing that life lacks—and for the most part, that’s normal. But cheaters cheat because a significant need—either emotional or physical—is not being met in their current relationship to the point where they desire its fulfillment. And so they seek that fulfillment elsewhere.

If you sense your partner is unhappy, try talking to them. If that still doesn’t resolve anything or help you gear your relationship in a more positive direction, consider stepping out.

Admitting your relationship is on the rocks or nearly over is difficult, particularly if you’re in a long-term commitment. But remember that allowing yourself to become prey to the destructive behaviors of a cheater can be more damaging and draining in the long haul. If you’re not sure you’re ready to break off your relationship, at least consider healthy ways to repair it, such as through counseling or therapy. And remember, any relationship that’s worth keeping takes time, patience and tons and tons of love.

3 Spectacular Credit Cards for People with Crummy Credit

Written  by Salina Jivani

You’re scoping out homes, cars, maybe even furniture. If you’ve got great or decent credit, these purchases probably don’t require a second thought. But the big, fat ugly C word can be quite a deterrent for those who are credit challenged. Unfortunately, bad credit can cost you great opportunities or even steep interest rates for things you dream of one day owning. But, luckily there is a silver lining to your credit woes.

A few credit card companies have programs designed specifically for not so great credit—and they’ve got some good benefits to boot. If you’ve got shoddy credit and are looking to either rebuild it, get access to quick cash or at least benefit from the perks of a good credit card, give one of these three candidates a try:

Milestone® Gold MasterCard®

The Milestone® Gold MasterCard® is a great unsecured credit card, meaning you don’t have to hand over a security deposit. (With a secured card, if you put a $100 as a security deposit, you’ll be able to use only $100 on your card, whereas with an unsecured credit card, you can spend whatever credit limit the credit card company approves you for.)

The good news is that this card is easy to qualify for if you’ve got bad credit, has a simple and quick qualification process and doesn’t post as a hard inquiry on your credit when you apply.

The cherry on top: previous bankruptcies are usually acceptable, given that you’re currently responsible with your finances.

Credit One Bank® Unsecured Visa® Credit Card

This credit card boasts a less-than-60-second approval process and is a solid choice for those who are looking to repair their credit because it reports to all three credit bureaus. Plus, it offers a flexible payment date to make sure you’re able to comfortably and timely make your card payments. Do this repeatedly and consistently and you’ll increase your credit score in the long run. And if you make several payments on time, you’ll be able to successfully request a credit limit increase—which equals more purchasing power!

The cherry on top: Earn 1% cashback on your gas and grocery purchases (terms apply).

Total VISA® Unsecured Credit Card

One of the last-ditch efforts for people who need a credit card in a hurry but have not-so-great credit. The bad news is there’s no rewards or cashback to be earned, but on the plus side, at least you have access to quick cash. Also, since it’s a Visa, it’s accepted worldwide and at many retailers across the nation. The card does report to all three major credit bureaus, so you’ll have a shot at improving your credit score if you make consistent, timely payments.

The cherry on top: Approval is often quick, if not instantaneous.

With credit cards comes responsibility, so do make every attempt to make your payments on time and remember that although not paying your credit card bills on time or in full might seem insignificant in light of other bills that pile up, it can have long-term, adverse effects on your credit—and your standard of living.

5 Places That Make the Most of Your Donations

Written by Salina Jivani

Donations tend to spike toward the end of the year when people are feeling particularly charitable, but the truth is many organizations could benefit from your gently used goods year round.

And if you are gearing up for spring cleaning or planning on rounding up your family’s gently used items and sending them off to serve a better purpose elsewhere, consider donating to these organizations reputed for making the most of the contributions they receive. They’ll put your items in the right hands and give you satisfaction in knowing your donation went a long way in positively impacting someone else in a meaningful way.

Dress for Success

With locations nationwide, Dress for Success is geared particularly toward helping women attain good jobs and succeed in the workplace. Along with supplying women with the employment resources they need to land a good job, Dress for Success also helps dress them appropriate attire. They look mainly for donations of women’s dress suits, dress clothes and accessories.

Operation Prom

As its name suggests, Operation Prom is all about dressing people for the prom. As we know, prom attire can be costly, and this organization helps those teens who possibly can’t afford the weighty price of a luxurious dress or tux. They accept all gently used clothing and have several locations that usually become more widespread and branch out as prom time inches closer.

Second Chance Toys

This organization is committed placing smiles firmly on children’s faces who live in homes that are facing hardships or live in poverty. They accept gently used toys, most of which are thrown away or discarded while so many children out there have very few if any to play with. Donate toys to this organization and help make a child’s day with your generosity.

One Warm Coat

During the winter months while most of us brave the cold with sturdy jackets, many out there suffer because they can’t afford one for themselves or their family. One Warm Coat helps these people by giving them your used jackets and coats so they can keep warm and make it through the harsh winter months.

Kars 4 Kids

A charitable organization designed specifically to benefit kids, Kars 4 Kids collects all used or non-functioning vehicles, even real estate, and uses the proceeds from sales to educate and mentor kids. Once you place a call to them, they’ll come out within 24-48 hours and pick up your vehicle. Fast and easy, Kars 4 Kids is a great way to get rid of a used or non-functioning car and give back toward our younger community with expending a minimal amount of effort and time.

When you make a donation to any charitable organization, whether those listed above or not, make sure you get your tax deductible receipt. In addition to being a great way to give back to the community, donations can also serve as a benefit to you in the form of a tax credit.

So gear up and donate away…not only will you free up space and do a good deed, but perhaps through your charitable actions karma will pay you back in a generous way.

5 Easy- Peasy Ways to Stop Getting Sick

Written by Salina Jivani

Don’t you just hate the itchy, scratchy, painful feeling of having a sore throat? Or being clogged with congestion? No one enjoys being under the weather. And while this time of year is notorious for eliciting on onslaught of cold, flus, viruses and untamable bugs, you don’t have to make your body more vulnerable than it already is.

Creating a healthy immune system starts from the inside. By following a few simple practices, you can help yourself remain in good health and (in turn) in good spirits year round.

Eat healthy

Nutrition is key to having a well-functioning body and immune system. Pile up on fruits, veggies and also yogurt, which contains probiotics that help stave off illnesses.

If you have any dietary restrictions for religious or personal purposes (ex: limiting meat or certain foods), be sure to supplement your diet with a multivitamin that’s appropriate for your age and gender. One-a-Day and Centrum brands are great because they have multivitamins designed specifically for this purpose.

Limit the booze

Yes, we all know an occasional red wine is healthy, key word being occasional. While alcohol is expected, sometimes even unavoidable at parties and gatherings, be responsible and don’t overindulge. Doing so over time will certainly affect various organs in your body, mainly your liver, and cost you your good health.

Immunize yourself

Make sure you get your vaccinations on time. Doing this will prevent you from unnecessary hospitalizations and protect you from a whole slew of diseases that are otherwise quite unnecessary to contract—because a simple vaccination can prevent them in the first place!

Stop smoking

Remember that old high school indulgence that quickly turned into a horrid lifetime habit? Kick it! Smoking can not only damage your health, but over time, it can weaken your lungs and immune system. Studies show that puffing often can also make you more susceptible to repeated bouts of serious illnesses such as pneumonia and bronchitis. So if you don’t want to spend your life being bed ridden with illnesses thanks to that cig, chuck this habit to boost your longevity and health.

Get some Zs

Yes, we know it’s impossible sometimes to get a good night’s rest. Especially if you’re running a start-up or have a house full of wee ones around. But sleep is detrimental to a well-functioning immune system and it’s something we all need enough of. So try, try, try to get the recommended amount of shut eye, which for adults is 7-9 hours.

Surprised that these tips sound an awful lot like the ones you always hear for everything from looking younger to having a hot bod? You shouldn’t be. Because at the core of having a healthier you is creating a healthier you, and the steps to that building that foundation remain unchanged. So adopt them and you’ll automatically help yourself (and your body) get a clean bill of health…and maybe a hot bod to spare 😉

5 U.S. Cities That Have The Worst Commute Ever

Written by Salina Jivani

Is it just me or has Atlanta traffic taken a turn (pun intended) for the worse? I’ve been an Atlantan for…ahem, a very long time. I remember the days when traffic occurred only around construction sites or at predictable times of the day when people typically commute to and from work, lasting only a few hours, at most.
Predicting traffic was almost like clockwork. If you left the house between 10 a.m. and noon or 1 p.m. and 3 p.m., and you wouldn’t hit traffic. Leave after 4 p.m. and you’re toast.
But the entire dynamic of our city seems to have changed in the last decade or so. Venture out any time of day, night, daylight or dawn and there’s no guessing whether you’ll be stuck in traffic—it’s almost a guarantee. In fact, the odds of encountering traffic are stacked against you at any given time of day.
Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on how you view it, other cities in the U.S. top our gridlock woes. Here they are in order, from best-of-the-worst to the worst-of-the-worst:
5) Corona, California: Corona has a fairly small population in comparison to some of the larger cities, being home to only 155,227 people—nearly one fourth of the population of the city of Atlanta. So it’s a bit surprising to see that their average commute time is approximately 38.5 minutes. Imagine that!

4) Jersey City, New Jersey: Jersey has a population almost three-fourth’s larger than Corona, sitting at about 251,717, and its commute is just a smidgen higher at nearly 38.9 minutes!

3) Palmdale, California: Here’s another low population city with a comparatively high average transport time. Even smaller in population than Corona at about 153,885 people, Palmdale’s average commute time falls right at about 41.5 minutes.

2) Antioch, California: Yeah. California. Again! Aren’t you glad you’re a Georgia peach? And though it might seem ludicrous, this city has a population of only 104,035 but has an average commute even greater than the rest at 41.6 minutes!

1) New York City: The city of the Big Apple, the city that never sleeps and is home to designers, publishers and many other talented creatives is number one, topping the list for the absolute worst city for commute in the country. But when you consider the population of this city is nearly 8.3 million people (!!!), it’s no wonder that its average commute time tops everyone else at an average of nearly 43 minutes. But push this number up against the smaller populated cities in California and the transport time suddenly doesn’t seem too unreasonable—even somewhat miraculously insignificant!
And for those of you curious cats out there, Atlanta doesn’t fall anywhere on the grid of the 25 or even 50 worst U.S. cities for commute. In fact, the average commute time for most metro Atlanta cities sits at approximately 30 minutes.
So the next time you’re out and about and feel that there’s no one in the world, or at least in America, who can understand your traffic troubles, rest assured, you’re still sitting prettier than a lot of your friends out there in New York, New Jersey and California!

Dr.Allycin Hicks Appointed Creative Director for A|Orie Cosmetics

What happens when a writer has an affinity for lipstick? Two words: Ardre Orie. Acclaimed writer, publisher, playwright and media maven Ardre Orie is flexing her entrepreneurial muscles with the launch of A. Orie Cosmetics in 2017. We sat down to talk with Dr. Allycin Hicks, appointed Creative Director of the brand to get her thoughts on the year ahead.

1. Why did you accept the invitation to join A. Orie Cosmetics in the role of Creative Director?
I accepted the role because I have, like many women my age, an obsession with cosmetics and a deep desire to support Black owned business. I’ve known Ardre for a while and respect her work ethic and kindness. So, when she asked me to be Creative Director I jumped at the opportunity.

2. How does Orie plan to mix her love for words and writing into the brand’s identify or are they two totally different ventures all together?
Ardre’s writing is a natural part of her personality so therefore is is part of everything she does. Each of our colors arrives to our customers with a “Love Letter” written by Orie to serve as yet another reminder of how special we each are. The company will also boast a series of inspirational quotes through our social media channels which will continuously reflect Orie’s love of writing and inspiration.

3. What makes A. Orie Cosmetics different from the existing cosmetic lines?

A. Orie cosmetics is founded by acclaimed writer Ardre Orie and she is a busy writer at that. So, she has integrated her love of prose into the product and it has a truly emerged as a motivational brand. Orie has enlisted an all African-American female team. That’s something that you don’t typically see. We’re a package deal. It’s not just about the lipstick. We put a lot of time into making sure that each and its associated message are communicated to our users. A. Orie Cosmetics is also about expanding your mind, developing your character and understanding who you are as an individual. This obviously goes beyond just lipstick but the lipstick is our route into people’s homes and hearts.

4. Why is the brand’s message so important?

We live in a world where positivity is becoming passé. We want to be a voice for unity, positivity, self-love, self-expression, understanding of others and a drive to do well. We definitely don’t think that were alone in this desire but we know that we desire to stand out as a cosmetics company with emphasis on inward beauty as well as outward beauty.

5. What is your vision for the line’s role in inspiring women and girls?

In a culture where every thought is featured on Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter or Facebook, we have to be cognizant of the fact that we are always being watched and that everything we do from making lipstick, clothes, or even writing books, you can be a form of inspiration for someone. For A. Orie Cosmetics, we really want to focus on African-American women, considering that they are a group who has been so vulnerable to media images. This is a group that obviously most of us in the company have been at one point and we really want to reflect that you can do anything you want to do, that you are beautiful, and if you work hard and produce good products you will be successful.

6. How many colors will be featured in each collection?

You have three colors for each season so that is 12 amazing colors that will be released in 2017. My creative team and I conducted a lot of market research and a lot of research on runway shows and projected trends for 2017. We came up with colors that I think are really fun and really clean. Some you will definitely recognize, and others will be a little funkier.

7. What was your inspiration for 2017?

I was thinking about the needs of the today’s woman. We are chameleons. We transition from mommy mode to girl boss mode and into turn up mode. I worked to create a color story that was playful but also has the basics that every woman needs. Each lipstick isn’t necessarily meant to be worn alone you can actually buy all three lipsticks for each season and wear them together.

8. What can we expect from A. Orie Cosmetics in the coming year?

Expect a lot of playful colors, fun combinations, looks from the hottest runways and a little bit of charity on top. We also have launch events coming up in Atlanta, Los Angeles and Chicago. Everyone be ready to come out!

Greek Organization Spotlight: Kappa Alpha Psi

Written by Kiera Robinson

If you’ve ever been to the quad, Kappa BBQ or any other Kappa event held by Kappa Alpha Psi then I’m sure that you’ve seen the smoothness of a Kappa man. It’s almost as if they glide whenever they enter the room. Ever wonder where the fraternity originated from? Well, this Founder’s Day is your chance to read up a little on the organization and it’s foundation.

January 5th marks the anniversary of Greek-letter fraternity, Kappa Alpha Psi. This fraternity was founded on January 5, 1911 at Indiana University Bloomington. Though Kappa Alpha Psi has a predominantly African-American based membership, it is filled with much diversity.
The organization’s founders Dr. Ezra D. Alexander, Dr. Byron Kenneth Armstrong, Dr. Marcus Peter Blakemore, Dr. Guy Levis Grant, Edward Giles Irvin, Atty. Henry Tourner Asher, Sgt. John Milton Lee, Paul Waymond Caine, George Wesley Edmonds, and Elder Watson Diggs designed a solid foundation within a year’s time in order to create a brotherhood worth being apart of. ‘Psi was nationally incorporated under the name of Kappa Alpha Nu on May 15, 1911. The name of the organization was changed to its current name in 1915, shortly after its creation.’

‘The motto of the Fraternity is, Achievement in every field of human endeavor. During this time, there were very few African-American students at the majority white campus at Bloomington, Indiana and they were a small minority due to the era of the Jim Crow laws. The racial prejudice and discrimination encountered by the founders strengthened their bond of friendship and growing interest in starting a social group.’
Several individuals experience the party side of frats, but never truly know about the things that had to be overcome to bring it all together. No matter what the origins of this fraternity are, one thing is for certain and that is that this is their day and it deserves to be celebrated the right way. So if you’re a Nupe (Kappa) or even if you just know one, then take time out to celebrate the day that this organization of brotherhood was created.

Everything You Want to Know About Men’s Skin

Written by Siam Benji

In the last two decades, men have finally realized that skin aesthetics do matter. More men than ever are now taking great care of their skin and always looking for ways to keep it younger and healthier. But is men’s skin the same as women and can they use the same skincare products?

Asides from the ability of men to grow a beard, there are several other differences between the skin of men and women.

Skin thickness: The skin thickness in men does vary but is at least 25% thicker than that of females. With advancing age, the skin in both men and women does start to thin, but the rate of thinning is must faster in women, especially after menopause.

Oily: Another thing to note is that the men’s skin is much oilier and feels warmer than women’s skin. Because of these physiological differences, men need slightly different products that can penetrate the skin easily- it is the oily nature of the skin that has to be taken into consideration. While there are no gender specific skincare products, one has to take into account the thickness and oily skin of men.

Aging: While aesthetic wise, women’s skin looks much fresh, clean, and softer than men up to the age of 40-45, the female skin tends to age a lot faster than men. And the reason is because of the thin skin and lack of collagen. The thickness of men’s skin is due to increased density of collagen, which helps prevent premature aging of the skin. The extra collagen molecules act like a scaffolding and prevent sagging and formation of wrinkles in men. Once past the age of 50, a woman’s skin will generally always look older than a man of the same age. Of course, one very common reason why this is not always obvious is men do not care about their skin as much as women. Most men hardly every use sunscreen and tend to have prolonged exposure to harsh rays of the sun; which takes away the inherent advantage of thick skin and lead to premature aging.

Larger pores: Another major difference between the skin of men and women is that the former tend to have much larger skin pores. This often leads to acne much earlier in men but by the age of 20-22, the pores tend to claim down and hormonal surge plateaus- this also leads to fewer acne lesions. On the other hand, in women acne is milder at puberty and occurs later in life but continues all the way through to adult life, chiefly because of the fluctuating hormonal levels.

Sweat: Men also tend to sweat more than women and the sweat tends to be slightly more acidic. However, this also tends to better hydration of skin; women tend to sweat less but because of thin skin, there is greater evaporation resulting in a dry wrinkled skin due to lack of hydration.

Finally, the texture of a men’s skin is drastically different from that of a female. In general men’s skin tend to feel rough and thick. Plus the production of sebum (oil) is much greater in males than females, which is associated with testosterone- this is the primary reason why men tend to have acne at puberty.

Because of these skin properties in men, some of the products that men should pay attention to include the following:

1. A good exfoliative facial cleanser will help remove dirt and debris from the skin and in-between the hair stubs. This will allow for a clean shaving surface and prevent ingrown hairs and razor burns.

2. For men who shave regularly, a shave gel or cream is recommended instead of foam. These products permit the shaving blade to come into close contact with the skin for a very close shave.

3. Finally, because men’s skin tends to be very oily and products like astringents and oil free moisturizers should be used.

In the end, it is important to understand that while there are physiological and structural differences between the skin of men and women, looking after the skin follows the same principles. If it is too dry, keep it moist; if it too oily use oil free moisturizers. Thirdly, avoid too much exposure to the sun and when going out use a sunscreen. Finally stop smoking as it is one of the most common causes of premature aging in both men and women.