Thursday, April 25, 2013

Taylor's Liberation

The Art of Nathan Jalani Taylor
Nathan Jalani Taylor is a successful visual artist, painter, graphic designer and art director from Rockford, Illinois. His work is powerful and expressive with semi-abstract figures, vibrant colors, and bold marks. While, Taylor’s use of colors and lines are striking, his underlining theme of liberation is more compelling – at least to me. Here I share with you some of my favorite Nathan Jalani Taylor illustrations.

Soul Growth

Destiny City

Nectar of Life


Elephas Maximus

The Universe Within

Lady of the Vine

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Following Your Dreams

"Simply following your dreams is not enough. 
You must stalk them, grab them
hold them captive and run alongside them.
 Kidnap them if you must. 
You'll thank yourself later." 

- SadeCru

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Pass The Kool-Aid

The Beauty Department always equips us with helpful beauty tips; they first assisted us with learning The Fishatil Braid technique and now their helping us achieve a fabulous yet tasty lip stain for the summer...with Kool-Aid. Yes, Kool-Aid! According to The Beauty Department Kool-Aid was meant to stain lips; they claim it really works and it lasts. Try it! Here's how:

1. Pick Your Flavor 
You can pick your flavor using the guide below or mix a couple to find your perfect hue:
Cherry = Orange Red
Tropical Punch = Bright Red
Peach Mango = Peach
Pink Lemonade = Barbie Pink
Strawberry Kiwi = Light Red
Grape = Purple
Then pour it into a little bowl or simply use the packet as your container.

2. Dampen Your Finger 
After, you have dampen your finger with very little water or a simple lick, press your finger in the powder to pick up one coat.

3. Rub Your Finger 
Rub the Kool-Aid all over your lips.Try not to eat it immediately ;)

4. Dampen a Q-tip 
Dampen a Q-tip to go back over it and smooth out any clumps or uneven edges. And that's it!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Over the Odor

Vaginal Odor
Let’s be frank with another; shall we? I know that many of you think, want, and even wish that your vagina emitted smells of an enchanted garden or some type of sweet treat out of a candy shop, but it never will happen – at least not naturally.  

Vaginas naturally have a smell and it’s not flowery nor is it fruity. “Don't believe him when he tells you it smells like rose petals when it's supposed to smell like pussy,” says Eva Ensler, award-winning author of the Vagina Monologues.  They’re simply trying to clean it up. “That's what they're doing -- trying to clean it up, make it smell like bathroom spray or a garden. All those douche sprays -- floral, berry, rain. I don't want my pussy to smell like rain.” (Eva Ensler)

Most doctors agree that your vaginal odor depends largely on your daily activities and your diet. Jennifer Wider, MD in Cosmopolitan’s 6 Vaginal Odors to Put on Your Radar reveals parallel findings to Lissa Rankin, MD in Blogher’s How Are Vaginas Supposed To Smell. Apparently a healthy vagina can smell musky, bleachy, tinny, or sweet while, an unhealthy vagina can smell fishy or yeasty. To elaborate:

A healthy vagina can smell musky from the surrounding sweat glands, especially after intense workouts like an exhausting spin class or a marathon; this is normal.

Jennifer Wider, MD tells Cosmopolitan that, “If your vagina gives off a strong, foul odor, it may be the sign of an infection. For example, bacterial vaginosis is caused by an overgrowth of bacteria and upsets the delicate PH balance of the vagina, causing an increase in discharge and a strong fishy odor that increases after you've had sex. A foul odor with green discharge typically indicates trichomoniasis, an STD. So, if you just don't smell right, trust your instinct and see your doctor.”

A healthy vagina may smell like bleach or “chlorine-like” after sexual intercourse; this may be a result of the lubricants you use during intercourse, and whether or not you used a condom.   

While it is normal for us women to have small amounts of yeast in our vagina, yeast infections occur when there's an overgrowth. Lissa Rankin, MD tells Blogher readers that “When yeast overgrows in the vagina, you may smell like freshly baked-bread or a good malt beer.”

If you are menstruating or pregnant you may notice that your vagina smells like blood or flinty-iron. Jennifer Wider, MD says that “When you have your period, the blood can mix with the natural state of a healthy vagina and give off a different—but normal—smell.” Furthermore,  the “American Congress of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG) reports that around 9 out of every 10 women experience an unusual vaginal odor during pregnancy. The reason, is normally harmless, and caused solely by the immense amount of hormone secretions and overworking sebaceous sweat glands in the vaginal area that are stimulated into a frenzy during pregnancy.” (Natty, 2013)

Lastly, but not least your vagina may smell sweet – not like a sweet treat from a candy shop, but more ambrosial; this is largely due to the types of food you eat. While, citrus fruits like oranges, pineapple, and grapefruit have been known to sweeten the smell and taste of vaginal fluids, onions, garlic, broccoli, and asparagus have been known to cause "unpleasant" odors and tastes. Hence, nutrition is important to combating unpleasant vaginal odors.  

Probiotic Pineapple Popsicle
Dr. Lisa Masterson of the award-winning talk show The Doctors along with her "V-Team" suggests eating a probiotic pineapple popsicle for fragrant vaginal health.

Here's what you'll need (seen above, clockwise): plain non-fat yogurt, strawberries, pineapples, and bananas. The directions are quite simple: you cut up the fruit to your liking (preferably small to medium size); next, you mix the fruit into a bowl of plain non-fat yogurt; then you place the mix into popsicle molds; lastly, freeze, eat , and enjoy. (**NOTE: You can use as much or as little of each ingrediant as you like, just be sure to use more yogurt than fruit.)
See here for more details. 

Other things you can do to minimize vaginal odor are:
– Wear clean underwear made of cotton, so that your vagina can breathe. It is also recommended, at least by my doctor, to sometimes sleep without underwear, so that your vagina can breathe more. 
– Avoid tight clothing.
– Bathe regularly using warm water and mild soap to clean the vaginal area. Make sure to avoid scented female products and douches to clean the vagina.
– Change pads and tampons regularly when menstruating.
– Use barrier methods of birth control if semen causes you a problem.
– Always wipe front to back after bowel movements.
– Avoid spicy and starchy foods as well as alcohol and caffeinated beverages.
– As discussed, you should be sure to include fresh fruits as well as leafy vegetables into your diet; make it a habit.
– Eat yogurt daily. Yogurt is full of live and active cultures which can balance the delicate flora (good bacteria) of your vagina.
– Urinate and wash immediately after sex to flush bacteria from the vaginal area.

Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 
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