Thursday, June 16, 2011

How To Be The Ultimate Fashionista

This week, I had the elite pleasure of attending a very delicious event. SoftSheen-Carson Dark and Lovely partnered with ESSENCE Magazine for the 2011 Fashionista Model Search. Located at the Metropolitan Pavilion in NYC, I sat with the press and watched as throngs of women -- each beautiful and lovely in their own right -- tried their luck at becoming the next Dark and Lovely Fashionista!

The live casting call also included an exciting panel discussion that covered the latest and greatest topics on all things beauty and fashion. And the panelists? A very impressive group of people:
Mikki Taylor, ESSENCE Editor-At-Large
Corynne Corbett, ESSENCE Beauty Director
Carlton Jones, Celebrity Stylist
Eric Bland, Celebrity Hairstylist
Bria Murphy, Dark and Lovely Brand Ambassador

L to R: Corynne Corbett, Mikki Taylor, Eric Bland, Bria Murphy, Carlton Jones
And their expert advice? Even more impressive. Here are some of the tips and tricks that they collaboratively dished out -- all in an effort to help you make bold statements from head to toe and be the ultimate fashionista!

Confidence is sexy. Super sexy.
Being a fashionista is about exuding confidence from the inside out. Do your best to always look polished and pulled together while trying to live from the inside out, as opposed to living from the outside in.

Embrace your uniqueness. 
Of all the things you can choose to be in the world... Just. Be. You.

Makeup should enhance your uniqueness. 
Make-up is about self-expression; what works for someone else may not necessarily work for you.

Obviously Mikki and I got the memo to wear stripes.
Fabulosity at its finest!

Trend today, trade it tomorrow. 
Trends are tools. Try to figure out how trends fit into your style. Wear that trendy dress, but don't let that trendy dress wear you.

Must-have staple items for the Summer:

  1. The little black dress. It doesn't literally have to be a black dress, just a "go-to" dress that hugs you in all the right places.
  2. A suit. One that you can wear to the office and out to dinner. Feel free to create versatility with fabulous accessories.
  3. A great "go-to" pair of heals. This will be different for every fashionista. Whether it be wedges, pumps, or stilettos, work it in whatever makes you feel comfortable and confident.
  4. A great fitting pair of jeans.
  5. Sun glasses.

To save or to splurge? Decisions, decisions... 
Know when to make an investment in a fabulous find and know when it'll be a throw-away item. For instance, since they tend not to last very long, often times trends will be throw-away pieces. However, staple items are here to stay so feel free to make a fashion investment and splurge baby splurge.

L to R: Carlton Jones, Corynne Corbett, Mikki Taylor, Eric Bland
The ultimate Summer survival guide: 
Waterproof mascara, waterproof eyeliner, lip gloss, blotting tissue, an exfoliating cleanser, a moisturizer with sunscreen, and a great dress that you can put on in less than 60 seconds! POW!

Be shoe-tastic all summer long!
Wearing sandals in warm weather is perfection! But flip flops? Leave them be. That is, unless you're a life guard.

My red platforms add just the right amount of POP to my
outfit. (Pictured with Nikki @MommyFactor)
Hair care and cuts
When working out, put your hair in a high ponytail and wrap it around. When it comes to your hair cut, if your face is round, a box-shaped cut will be best for you. If your face is squared, an oval-shaped cut will work best.

Pictured with Nika from
Be the ultimate fashionista
Always remember to know your body type and fit it well. Know what kind of hair cut fits your face and color. Love yourself. Own your life from the inside out. And have FUN!

And let the fashionistas say... AMEN!

I definitely had a great time. Thanks to ESSENCE Magazine and Dark and Lovely for hosting such a fabulous event. And thanks to the panelists for their fabulous and fashionable tips!

{Disclaimer: Press members received a gift bag.}


  1. Looks like the event was a blast. You & Mrs. Taylor wore fab dresses. Do tell where you found yours please? You left us with some really great tips. Being a mom hasn't stopped me from being neat, professional when at work and cute & chic when I'm not.

  2. Loving the shoes! Great tips.

  3. So fabulous!!! You look amazing in your stripes! Love those tips!

  4. So wish I would have been there. I would have been in fashionista heaven!!

  5. I'm in love with your shoes. I agree with having that go to dress.

  6. WOW! I'm doing better than I thought... although I need to work on the confidence thing... and the waterproof mascara... they didn't have any in my brand the last time I stocked up. The only thing I disagree with is flip flops... they have a time and place, especially Below the Mason Dixon Line... they are a must-have!

  7. You look amazing in these pictures! This sounded like such a fun event! I love the tips, especially the one that says to wear a dress! I love summer just because I can wear a dress everyday.

  8. What a great event! Love your fit! Thanks for the recap!

  9. Great event! You look gorgeous as always and I love the fashion tips! :)

  10. Amen! Great post, great tips. And the outfit is hot!

  11. The shoes were RIGHT! You looked fab! Thanks for the tips

  12. You always look so fabulous! You're one chic Mama! I agree with a lot of your comments, though, I cant tell you how often I have tried, and how many pairs of heels I have/do own, I hardly ever wear them.


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