IN MY BAG | NYX Cosmetics Butter Gloss

If you are a beauty lover like myself, I'm sure you've had your share of  NYX Cosmetics filling your makeup bag. Over the years, beauty brand NYX Cosmetics has been a staple in my beauty arsenal. Their primers, lipsticks, eyeliners, lipliners, brow pens, and blushes have been automatic repurchases, as I've been so pleased with the quality and affordability of theses items. And as much as I've gushed over said products in the past, nothing has quite compared to my love of the NYX Butter Gloss. Any gloss girlie can tell you-- NYX Butter Gloss was, is, and will always be THAT GIRL.


Deemed "America's #1 Lip Gloss" on the NYX Cosmetics website, Butter Gloss is a fan favorite for good reason. With 29 shades of creamy gloss, there's a color (or 3) for everyone. Each gloss gives sheer to medium coverage, with the exception of the clear gloss. And the best thing about them? They glide on beautifully, giving your lips just the desired amount of shine WITHOUT the stickiness. I don't know about anyone else, but for me, a tacky lip gloss can ruin an entire lip look. But not Butter Gloss. She plays well alone or layered with other lip products, such as liners and lipsticks. 

While talking about these glosses with a friend the other day, I was asked which were my favorites among the bunch. So, I decided to share my top three here with you guys as well. I've bought so many different shades of NYX Butter Gloss over the years. However, three in particular are always found IN MULTIPLES in my makeup bag, in my purse, and on my vanity. ENTER: Tiramisu, Praline, and Ginger Snap.

Blossom Into The Feminine | A Playlist

What does basking in your femininity mean to you?

To me, this means embracing the qualities that make me who I am as a woman-- my softness, my sensuality, my ability to nurture and create from the most sacred spaces within me. And since learning to fully embrace my femininity years ago, I"ve felt an ease in my mind + body like never before. I welcome change with less resistance. I don't let the thoughts and opinions of others affect me as much. I am more accepting of who I am in totality. I welcome and embrace the genuine love around me. I feel blessed and grateful to return the love, in a genuine way. And I honor my sensuality, allowing myself to fully enjoy the things that make me feel pleasure.

As with anything I do, I've created a playlist featuring many songs that put me in a state of flow, when it comes to my femininity. Songs that feel good when I sing the lyrics. Songs that sound good sliding through my speakers on quiet nights alone. Songs that remind me that I am a soft, gentle being that allows herself to give and receive pleasure.

Oh, For The Love of Plants

After the pandemic, I became fascinated with plants. I won't say fascinated. It was borderline obsession and indescribable wonder. I had seen so many beautiful plants pop up on my social media timelines and was in awe of how many of my cyber friends had developed these green thumbs. A green thumb was seemingly something I was missing from my toolkit, as I had managed to kill every plant I had acquired after my father's death in 2010. My then apartment sagged with wilted greenery engulfing my living room and one thing I just couldn't manage to nurture to health-- those damned plants. I had this habit of purchasing flowers from the local grocery store each week, and while they were a beautiful sight sitting on my small dining room table, they could not rival strong towering leaves of flourishing plants, in my mind. I was no stranger to them, as my Grandma Lou had a sunroom with the most beautiful, healthy plants you ever wanted to see growing up against its walls. That room was full of grandma's love and care. And she she did not play with my siblings and I when it came to "disturbing" them. I didn't want to keep accumulating flowers just to throw them out each week. I wanted to nurture some beautiful greens to life, too. 

Five Ways The Comparison Trap is Killing Your Self-Esteem

women and self-esteem

I've often heard the phrase "comparison is the thief of joy." And boy, does it ring true! How many times have you witnessed the act of comparison literally steal your joy right from up under your nose?

Ever found yourself mindlessly scrolling social media and came across someone in your feed doing something amazing? Perhaps they just got a promotion or landed the job of their dreams. Maybe they just purchased a brand new car or home.  They could have even started that business they've been working towards for quite some time. And while we feel pride and offer heartfelt congratulations when our closest friends accomplish goals, oftentimes, it causes us to reflect on our own lives. 

Whether it's associates, sworn enemies, or strangers we've only connected with online, we can undoubtedly find ourselves comparing our paths to others. And with the constant access to other people's presumably perfect lives unfolding daily on our social media scroll, it's hard not to. However, if you make a habit of doing this too often, you may have fallen into the comparison trap. This never-ending loop of negative thinking will delay any real progress towards your own personal goals and ruin your self-esteem in the process, if you're not careful. 

In this post we will discuss the ways in which the comparison trap is killing your self-esteem and how to reverse it!

Dre Writes | Grandma's Sunroom

Being in grandma’s sunroom has always been cathartic for me. At an early age, it was this nearly forbidden place she entered each morning, drawing the curtains and watering the vast array of plants with limbs encasing the entire room. My brother almost got in trouble for knocking over grandma’s plants in there one day, but of course, I took the blame. We'd both learn that day that grandma did not tolerate any "horse play" in that sunroom, and her swift punishment would be the teacher. Those lessons, thankfully, were few and far-in-between. I adored my grandmother and wouldn't dare do anything to fall from her grace-- or lose access to that majestic sunroom.


Late at night, grandma would seek solace in that room, pulling the chair from under her sewing machine to create something new and beautiful with her hands, humming along to some unknown song as she transformed linens and lace as she pat her foot on the pedal. I was as quiet as can be, watching from the kitchen entrance, as grandma drifted off into her own world. 

I snuck away to the sunroom in the afternoons while my aunt was in class, thumbing through her English textbooks and records scattered by grandma’s desk. It wasn’t long before I was sitting at the desk completing assignments, too. Grandma never scolded me. I just heard her tell someone on the phone that I was so smart, I was doing Teeny Gal’s (as she affectionately called my aunt) homework. This affirmed me, taking to writing at that desk every chance I got. 

Before long, some of the plants were replaced with more seating space. Grandma always hosted holidays at her house and tables with pie, cakes, and savory dishes soon filled that sunroom. More grandchildren came and the sunroom eventually filled with cabbage patch dolls, books, tonka trucks, and skateboards. The occasional plant adorned the writing desk by the door. Flowers were eventually transported just outside to the front porch. Nonetheless, I’d catch grandma standing at the kitchen entrance of the sunroom in awe, smiling at nothing but the mass of race cars scattered on her shaggy, seafoam-colore rug. She’d dry her hands on her apron and just look around at it all, saying nothing. Gone were the days when she scolded us for not cleaning up our toys. 

Several years passed and the sunroom I once knew became a makeshift bedroom for me and my two children, complete with a tv set, DVD player, and couch that converted to a bed at night. By this point, grandma’s house was a refuge for us after a bad break-up. Grandma was no longer making grandbabies breakfast at the crack of dawn, but was instead sleeping in until nearly 11 AM, slowly dragging herself and her bedroom slippers from her quarters as my cousin Andrea pleaded with her to come and eat. Grandma’s smile would come and go, but her words were less frequent. Her stories from “way back when” were still intact, but she’d began to mistake my young daughter for me. Her place at the dinner table was made by someone else. Her and granddaddy patiently waited at the table while my sister and I served “not quite grandma’s” fried chicken and mac & cheese. And while she usually objected, my sister and I cleared the table and washed the dishes grandma never allowed us to touch before. 

Now that grandma and grandpa are both gone, I miss so many things about them. How grandma made breakfast in the morning, watched the stories at 1PM (with the illustrious John Black, need I say more), kept me and all my siblings in line with only a few words and powerful stares, how she had dinner on the table at the same time every night, and how her and grandpa called me smart when I got the answers right on Jeopardy. But one thing I didn’t notice until I was watering my own plants this morning, was how grandma’s own personal sunroom transformed into a “safe haven” of sorts for all her grandchildren right up under my nose. She gave us everything and kept nothing to herself. Not even her space. Nor her precious memories. 

photos by kate darmody for unsplash


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