Before I worked as a beauty editor, I swore off injectables (think: Botox) because I didn't want to mess with my face. And if I'm honest, the topic was still taboo for me. Primarily due to the messaging I grew up with about being a Black woman and aging. All the women around me have aged "gracefully" and used minimal skin care products. So why should my beauty journey be any different?
Well, that ideal has changed for me. And I see beauty and aging from a less critical and judgmental lens. One valuable piece of information I've learned in my beauty career that changed my perspective is most of the people we admire in the public eye are using preventive treatments. And, I'm not talking $400 creams and serums.
My Entry to Botox
Remember how I said I vowed never to get anything injected into my face? Well, those days are over. I'd been invited to try Botox a few times because of my work, but I kept avoiding it. But recently, turning 36, I've had a change of heart out of pure curiosity.
Will I still be able to move my face? Spoiler alert: Yes. Will I look overdone? Is anyone going to know I've been treated? So, I visited The Atlanta Injectors at Lemmon Avenue Atlanta and consulted with Allie McAllister, NP-C, DCNP, the founder of The Atlanta Injectors, to see if I could confirm or bust these myths.
First things first: the consult. Allie asked me first, "What do you see?" I loved that she didn't look at my face and give me a laundry list of things that needed fixing. In fact, she validated me and my natural beauty during the process, adding that I didn't need much done. But, I wanted her to tell me what she saw. Her suggestions were to treat my crow's feet and glabella—the area between the eyes and the nose. For her, less is more. And that was what I needed to hear.
Courtesy of Bianca Lambert
Next up, she marked the injection sites with a white pencil. And it was time for my first ever Botox treatment. I'm sure you're wondering if it was painful. Not really. It was nothing above a slight pinch. But it also helped that they gave me Mr. Buzzy: a white vibrator held onto tightly I kept on my chest that helped me focus on something else. Before each injection, she'd ask me to either frown or smile to get the Botox right where it needed to be. And in what felt like a few minutes, I was done. Aside from the Botox, she did have more suggestions, chin filler, which I also said yes to and will share more about soon.
Courtesy of Bianca Lambert
There are a few post-appointment do's and don'ts:
- Do ice any swelling.
- Don't lie down for the first four hours after treatment to prevent Botox from migrating (So no naps unless you can sleep straight up).
- Don't drink any alcohol for 48 hours.
- Don't do any rigorous exercising for 48 hours.
- Don't massage your face for at least 72 hours.
Ok, so what is Botox?
To answer this question accurately, I chatted with cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Michele Green. "Botox is the name of a medication derived from botulinum toxin type A, a toxin produced by the Clostridium botulinum bacterium," Green tells xoNecole. Botox is an Allergan product and has been FDA-approved since 2002 for cosmetic purposes to reduce fine lines and wrinkles (think: areas on the forehead, glabella aka the elevens, and crow's feet around the eyes. Botox is also used to treat chronic migraines and muscle spasms. But there are other cosmetic neurotoxins, too: Dysport, Xeomin, and Jeuveau.
Is there any downtime with Botox?
"The best thing about Botox: there is little to no downtime with Botox injections," Green shares. However, she does note that with any injections, whether cosmetic or medical, there may be temporary swelling or bruising for a few days post-treatment.
"If you are prone to bruising or have an important event that you want to prevent bruising for, there are steps you can take to minimize the risk of bruising and swelling,” she adds. “Avoid blood thinners and blood-thinning agents such as aspirin, Motrin, vitamin E, and fish oil for at least one week prior to the injections. Refrain from drinking alcohol for one day before the injections."
And one final tool to minimize bruising and swelling: a good ole ice pack.
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Featured image by Vesnaandjic/Getty Images
- As Told To: Roberta Moradfar of EFFACE Aesthetics - xoNecole ... ›
- Angela Bassett Opens Up About Trying Botox & Drops Her Skincare ... ›
Bianca Lambert is a proud Atlanta native soaking up the Los Angeles sun. She is the founder of Mae B: a stationery company for women of color and a digital content creator on a mission to elevate the voices of women of color everywhere.
How Content Creators Hey Fran Hey And Shameless Maya Embraced The Pivot
This article is in partnership with Meta Elevate.
If you’ve been on the internet at all within the past decade, chances are the names Hey Fran Hey and Shameless Maya (aka Maya Washington) have come across your screen. These content creators have touched every platform on the web, spreading joy to help women everywhere live their best lives. From Fran’s healing natural remedies to Maya’s words of wisdom, both of these content creators have built a loyal following by sharing honest, useful, and vulnerable content. But in search of a life that lends to more creativity, freedom, and space, these digital mavens have moved from their bustling big cities (New York City and Los Angeles respectively) to more remote locations, taking their popular digital brands with them.
Content Creators Hey Fran Hey and Maya Washington Talk "Embracing The Pivot"www.youtube.com
In partnership with Meta Elevate — an online learning platform that provides Black, Hispanic, and Latinx-owned businesses access to 1:1 mentoring, digital skills training, and community — xoNecole teamed up with Franscheska Medina and Maya Washington on IG live recently for a candid conversation about how they’ve embraced the pivot by changing their surroundings to ultimately bring out the best in themselves and their work. Fran, a New York City native, moved from the Big Apple to Portland, Oregon a year ago. Feeling overstimulated by the hustle and bustle of city life, Fran headed to the Pacific Northwest in search of a more easeful life.
Her cross-country move is the backdrop for her new campaign with Meta Elevate— a perfectly-timed commercial that shows how you can level up from wherever you land with the support of free resources like Meta Elevate. Similarly, Maya packed up her life in Los Angeles and moved to Sweden, where she now resides with her husband and adorable daughter. Maya’s life is much more rural and farm-like than it had been in California, but she is thriving in this peaceful new setting while finding her groove as a new mom.
While Maya is steadily building and growing her digital brand as a self-proclaimed “mom coming out of early retirement,” Fran is redefining her own professional grind. “It’s been a year since I moved from New York City to Portland, Oregon,” says Fran. “I think the season I’m in is figuring out how to stay successful while also slowing down.” A slower-paced life has unlocked so many creative possibilities and opportunities for these ladies, and our conversation with them is a well-needed reminder that your success is not tied to your location…especially with the internet at your fingertips. Tapping into a community like Meta Elevate can help Black, Hispanic, and Latinx entrepreneurs and content creators stay connected to like minds and educated on new digital skills and tools that can help scale their businesses.
During a beautiful moment in the conversation, Fran gives Maya her flowers for being an innovator in the digital space. Back when “influencing” was in its infancy and creators were just trying to find their way, Fran says Maya was way ahead of her time. “I give Maya credit for being one of the pioneers in the digital space,” Fran said. “Maya is a one-person machine, and I always tell her she really changed the game on what ads, campaigns, and videos, in general, should look like.”
When asked what advice she’d give content creators, Maya says the key is having faith even when you don’t see the results just yet. “It’s so easy to look at what is, despite you pouring your heart into this thing that may not be giving you the returns that you thought,” she says. “Still operate from a place of love and authenticity. Have faith and do the work. A lot of people are positive thinkers, but that’s the thinking part. You also have to put your faith into work and do the work.”
Fran ultimately encourages content creators and budding entrepreneurs to take full advantage of Meta Elevate’s vast offerings to educate themselves on how to build and grow their businesses online. “It took me ten years to get to the point where I’m making ads at this level,” she says. “I didn’t have those resources in 2010. I love the partnership with Meta Elevate because they’re providing these resources for free. I just think of the people that wouldn’t be able to afford that education and information otherwise. So to amplify a company like this just feels right.”
Watch the full conversation with the link above, and join the Meta Elevate community to connect with fellow businesses and creatives that are #OnTheRiseTogether.
Featured image courtesy of Shameless Maya and Hey Fran Hey
Tracee Ellis Ross Reflects On How Her Mother, Diana Ross, Fearlessness In Music Impacted Her Career
Like mother, like daughter.
Over the years, many have viewed the close dynamic between Tracee Ellis Ross and her mother, Diana Ross, through the pair's occasional social media posts about one another and their red-carpet appearances.
Although Tracee would go on to make a name for herself in the entertainment industry as an actress, entrepreneur, and host "I America" podcast, the 50-year-old disclosed that the biggest inspiration behind her successful career, stemmed from watching her mother, a well-renowned singer and actress, be resilient through challenging situations and continuously spreading love.
Tracee On Her Mother And the Struggles She Could Have Faced Being an Entertainer in the 1960s
During a recent interview on Larry Wilmore's "Black on the Air" podcast, Tracee revealed on mark 56:25 that she often asked her mother what prompted the 79-year-old to dress and style her hair a certain way, especially during the time she grew up in.
Diana was a lead vocalist in the singing group The Supremes in the 1960s and would ultimately go solo in 1970. During her solo career, Diana's fashion choices and big natural hair would often make headlines because, at the time, it didn't fit the social standards of beauty.
"As a person and as a singular talent, and you think of the time period when she came forward, sometimes I ask her questions, she doesn't even have an answer, like 'what makes you think you can wear your hair like that?'" Tracee said while acknowledging that her mother's choices possibly helped redefine the beauty standards. "Do you know what I mean? Like if you just think of some of the small decisions and you think of the years."
Further in the conversation, Tracee mentioned that her respect for her mother deepened when an individual posted a black-and-white image of Diana performing with The Supremes. The reason for the appreciation was that the black-ish star saw the women performing in front of an all-white crowd. This made Tracee think about the possible things they could have gone through, mainly racism, during that moment and how her mother remained a loving person despite the hardships.
"One time [on] Instagram, someone posted a picture of my mom and The Supremes performing. I've seen the picture before. I had never looked in the audience. It was an all-white audience, and all I kept thinking was it was a black-and-white picture. They didn't come in from the front door... I was thinking [about] all these things and what she had to be resilient through, resistant to, and what was in the environment when she was coming up. What that makes somebody, that my mom is so anchored in love that she's just a loving person," she stated.
Tracee On How Diana's Unconditional Love for Herself and Others Inspired Her Own Career
Also, in the interview, Tracee talked about how motivational it is to see her mother spread love to others through her performances while staying true to herself and her craft.
"I think the biggest thing for me is my mom has also been this woman who has used this platform of the stage to spread love but also not to say look at me, but this is me. Which is very different than a lot of what I see now," Tracee shared.
Tracee continued by adding that growing up with that type of foundation helped shape her career decades later because she saw firsthand, through Diana's determination and honoring herself, the positive effects it can have on one's life.
The Girlfriends star said, "That sense of agency and sense of self, selfhood has made its way into my life, my career, and the fact my mom is such a great businesswoman. It is quite a legacy."
Tracee's "I Am America" podcast can now be viewed or listened to on any streaming platform suitable for podcasts.
Feature image by Kevin Mazur/VF19/WireImage