If the year 2020 has taught me anything is that life is unpredictable. You think to yourself, "Oh I'll just try that new hobby tomorrow," or "I'll pitch my new business idea next month," or "I'll just ask that cute guy down the block his name another day." Nah, sis. This year has been the year to be a little more brave and take a risk in life and in love. But don't just listen to me, comedian and content creator Jasmine Luv is here to tell you that there is no time like the present.
Jasmine Luv is no stranger to going after what she wants. From leaving her accounting job four years ago to following her passion as a content creator, Jasmine has landed countless acting roles including a starring role in a recent BETHer two-part special directed by Vanessa Bell Calloway and Sheryl Lee Ralph called The Waiting Room. While Jasmine is following her dreams in her career, she is not letting her love life pass her by. Jasmine and her partner Corey, Tall Guy Car Reviews, recently got engaged and they couldn't be happier. Who knew a ring would be the result of a simple slide into this guy's DM? With this pandemic, a successful love story of hope after an action of bravery is exactly what we need.
xoNecole recently had a chance to chat with Jasmine on how her life has changed for the better after she #ShotHerShot. Here's what she shared:
xoNecole: What did the moment look like when you decided to shoot your shot at Corey?
Jasmine Luv: When I first saw him, it was at the gym. We were living in the same complex and when I walked into the gym I said to myself, 'Who is this young fella over here glistening with the sweats?' We locked eyes, but didn't say anything. So I continued my work out and left because in my mind, if he's not going to say anything, then I am not going to say anything. I got home and was talking to my brother about the guy I saw at the gym. My brother goes to the gym all the time, so he was bound to know who else goes to the gym a lot too.
After I described the guy to him, my brother told me that he was Tall Guy Car Reviews. So after he said that, you know us women gotta do our detective work. I Google-d him and found his page on Instagram. I'm scrolling and noticed I didn't see a woman in any of the pictures. At the time, I think I was going through a moment where it's Hot Girl Summer, I'm single and it looked like he was single. We live in the same complex, so I thought what the heck, I'm just going to shoot my shot. I did my due diligence and slid in his DMs. I have never done that before. I don't know what came over me, but it must have been God because it worked out marvelously.
"I did my due diligence and slid in his DMs. I have never done that before. I don't know what came over me, but it must have been God because it worked out marvelously."
What was that intro line you gave him that reeled him in?
Well, I sent him a message saying, "Hey neighbor, I see you live at the same complex. How are you?" He responded and then I asked him how was he liking everything so far. We kept conversing after that and he asked me if I wanted to meet up with him later on the rooftop. The rest is history.
Now, you and Corey have a successful YouTube channel, travel the world, and are engaged -- did you know that shooting your shot with him was going to be the beginning of your forever?
Never did I think in a million years things would turn out the way they did. Like I said, it was 2019, Hot Girl Summer, and I was just letting things happen. I wasn't expecting anything.
How do you navigate between both of your individual careers and the budding empire you are building together?
Everything worked seamlessly honestly. We both do the same things in our careers and that helps because we both know what to expect in each other's lives. I know individually we respect each other and when we can, we make time where certain days are "Our Days". For example, during the week, it's busy with running errands and shooting videos. At the end of the day, we do catch up and talk to each other about our day and give us that time together. But on Sundays, we do zero work. We are able to just lay in bed all day, watch movies, and eat fat food. That's how we do our self-care.
"On Sundays, we do zero work. We are able to just lay in bed all day, watch movies, and eat fat food. That's how we do our self-care."
Do you think you applied the “shoot your shot” mentality with your dream career?
I know I am a person that comes off as very straightforward. Shooting my shot with my career, that doesn't come as a shock. When it comes to business, I am very hands-on and direct. However, in my love life, I have never done that before, so that definitely comes as a shock.
What are three rules of thumb you think we all should apply in order to shoot our shots and live the lives we wish to lead?
Well, the first rule I would say is, don't be afraid to do it. I think as women we think, 'Oh, he didn't approach me, so I'm not going to approach him.' Because shoot, I was like that. But while I think it's true that men should pursue women, there is also nothing wrong with you making the first move. It's OK. There is nothing wrong with trying it out. We are in a new era and if you see a man and you think he's fine, you better go over there and tell that man you think he's fine!
The second rule would be to have fun with it. Try not to take the situation so seriously. We can psyche ourselves sometimes, but girl, it's cool to just have fun and be in the moment. The third rule correlates with number 1, but JUST DO IT (laughs). I know it's easier said than done, trust me I know. But as far as shooting your shot with a guy, I think a good ice-breaker is starting up a conversation about something you both have in common. With Corey and I, we have social media in common. So we were able to connect through that.
Why do you think women are hesitant to make the first move when it comes to what we want out of life?
I acknowledge that shooting your shot is not for everyone. I know I used to be one of those girls that would think, 'Hmmm I'm good on that.' I know a lot of people have told me that they have a fear of rejection and I believe everyone does. But I still think you don't know unless you try. So, I think it's OK to feel out of your element. No one was expecting the pandemic and how it has taken control of people's lives. But sometimes, that is exactly what we need to do with our own lives. Take back control. In 2020, it's a chance to try something new. With everything that is going on, maybe how you've done things isn't working anymore and you need to shift and do something different. Something that's outside of your comfort zone.
"No one was expecting the pandemic and how it has taken control of people's lives. But sometimes, that is exactly what we need to do with our own lives. Take back control. In 2020, it's a chance to try something new."
What is one thing you would tell your younger self that you wish someone told you about taking ownership of writing your own story?
Jasmine Luv: Well, growing up, I was always the shy girl. I'm honestly still shy to this day. But with moving out to LA, I was able to get out of my comfort zone a little bit and it made me more confident. So I would tell my younger self, "Don't be shy." If there is anything you want to do, you should pursue it.
Whether it's in your love life or your career, make sure you get out there, do it, and give it your all.
Keep up with their love story by following Jasmine's IG page here and check out the couple's YouTube channel to see more of their travels, wedding planning and more.
Featured image courtesy of Jasmine Luv
Exclusive: Gabrielle Union On Radical Transparency, Being Diagnosed With Perimenopause And Embracing What’s Next
Whenever Gabrielle Union graces the movie screen, she immediately commands attention. From her unforgettable scenes in films like Bring It On and Two Can Play That Game to her most recent film, in which she stars and produces Netflix’s The Perfect Find, there’s no denying that she is that girl.
Off-screen, she uses that power for good by sharing her trials and tribulations with other women in hopes of helping those who may be going through the same things or preventing them from experiencing them altogether. Recently, the Flawless by Gabrielle Union founder partnered with Clearblue to speak at the launch of their Menopause Stage Indicator, where she also shared her experience with being perimenopausal.
In a xoNecoleexclusive, the iconic actress opens up about embracing this season of her life, new projects, and overall being a “bad motherfucker.” Gabrielle reveals that she was 37 years old when she was diagnosed with perimenopause and is still going through it at 51 years old. Mayo Clinic says perimenopause “refers to the time during which your body makes the natural transition to menopause, marking the end of the reproductive years.”
“I haven't crossed over the next phase just yet, but I think part of it is when you hear any form of menopause, you automatically think of your mother or grandmother. It feels like an old-person thing, but for me, I was 37 and like not understanding what that really meant for me. And I don't think we focus so much on the word menopause without understanding that perimenopause is just the time before menopause,” she tells us.
Photo by Brian Thomas
"But you can experience a lot of the same things during that period that people talk about, that they experienced during menopause. So you could get a hot flash, you could get the weight gain, the hair loss, depression, anxiety, like all of it, mental health challenges, all of that can come, you know, at any stage of the menopausal journey and like for me, I've been in perimenopause like 13, 14 years. When you know, most doctors are like, ‘Oh, but it's usually about ten years, and I'm like, ‘Uhh, I’m still going (laughs).’”
Conversations about perimenopause, fibroids, and all the things that are associated with women’s bodies have often been considered taboo and thus not discussed publicly. However, times are changing, and thanks to the Gabrielle’s and the Tia Mowry’s, more women are having an authentic discourse about women’s health. These open discussions lead to the creation of more safe spaces and support for one another.
“I want to be in community with folks. I don't ever want to feel like I'm on an island about anything. So, if I can help create community where we are lacking, I want to be a part of that,” she says. “So, it's like there's no harm in talking about it. You know what I mean? Like, I was a bad motherfucker before perimenopause. I’m a bad motherfucker now, and I'll be a bad motherfucker after menopause. Know what I’m saying? None of that has to change. How I’m a bad motherfucker, I welcome that part of the change. I'm just getting better and stronger and more intelligent, more wise, more patient, more compassionate, more empathetic. All of that is very, very welcomed, and none of it should be scary.”
The Being Mary Jane star hasn’t been shy about her stance on therapy. If you don’t know, here’s a hint: she’s all for it, and she encourages others to try it as well. She likens therapy to dating by suggesting that you keep looking for the right therapist to match your needs. Two other essential keys to her growth are radical transparency and radical acceptance (though she admits she is still working on the latter).
"I was a bad motherfucker before perimenopause. I’m a bad motherfucker now, and I'll be a bad motherfucker after menopause. Know what I’m saying? None of that has to change. How I’m a bad motherfucker, I welcome that part of the change."
Gabrielle Union and Kaavia Union-Wade
Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images
“I hope that a.) you recognize that you're not alone. Seek out help and know that it's okay to be honest about what the hell is happening in your life. That's the only way that you know you can get help, and that's also the only other way that people know that you are in need if there's something going on,” she says, “because we have all these big, very wild, high expectations of people, but if they don't know what they're actually dealing with, they're always going to be failing, and you will always be disappointed. So how about just tell the truth, be transparent, and let people know where you are. So they can be of service, they can be compassionate.”
Gabrielle’s transparency is what makes her so relatable, and has so many people root for her. Whether through her TV and film projects, her memoirs, or her social media, the actress has a knack for making you feel like she’s your homegirl. Scrolling through her Instagram, you see the special moments with her family, exciting new business ventures, and jaw-dropping fashion moments. Throughout her life and career, we’ve seen her evolve in a multitude of ways. From producing films to starting a haircare line to marriage and motherhood, her journey is a story of courage and triumph. And right now, in this season, she’s asking, “What’s next?”
“This is a season of discovery and change. In a billion ways,” says the NAACP Image Award winner. “The notion of like, ‘Oh, so and so changed. They got brand new.’ I want you to be brand new. I want me to be brand new. I want us to be always constantly growing, evolving. Having more clarity, moving with different purpose, like, and all of that is for me very, very welcomed."
"I want you to be brand new. I want me to be brand new. I want us to be always constantly growing, evolving. Having more clarity, moving with different purpose, like, and all of that is for me very, very welcomed."
She continues, “So I'm just trying to figure out what's next. You know what I mean? I'm jumping into what's next. I'm excited going into what's next and new. I'm just sort of embracing all of what life has to offer.”
Look out for Gabrielle in the upcoming indie film Riff Raff, which is a crime comedy starring her and Jennifer Coolidge, and she will also produce The Idea of You, which stars Anne Hathaway.
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Feature image by Mike Lawrie/Getty Images
Victoria Monét has had an incredible year. Thanks to the success of the widely popular “On My Mama” that went viral, the singer/ songwriter’s Jaguar II album debuted in the top 10 of Billboard’s Top R&B Albums chart. She also went on to headline her own sold-out tour. So, when the MTV VMAs happened in September, everyone was surprised to learn that Victoria’s team was told that it was “too early” for the “Smoke” artist to perform at the award show. However, a couple of months later, the mom of one received seven Grammy nominations, including “Best R&B Album” and “Record Of The Year.”
Victoria is currently in London and stopped by The Dotty Show on Apple Music and shared how she feels “validated” after being dismissed by the VMAs.
“It really does feel nice and validating because, in my head, the reason why I wanted to be a performer at the VMAs or award ceremonies like that is because I felt like I am at the place where I should. I would work really hard to put on the best show that I could, and I was excited to do so,” she said.
“And I guess the best way to describe it for me is like when you're like on a sports team, and the coach is like, ‘No, you gotta sit this one out.’ When they finally put you in, and then you score all these points, and it feels like that feeling. You're like, yes, I knew it wasn't tripping, but I knew I worked hard for this, and so it's been super validating to just have these accolades come after a moment like that, and I know the fans feel vindicated for me.
While her fans called the VMAs out on their decision, the “Moment” singer kept it cute and is still open to performing at the iconic award show. “I feel no ill towards them because it's just maybe that's just truly how they felt at the time, but I hope their mind has changed,” she admitted.
Feature image by Amy Sussman/WireImage for Parkwood