In About Face, xoNecole gets the 411 on IGers who give us #skincaregoals on the daily. Here they break down their beauty routines on the inside and out, as well as the highly coveted products that grace their shelves and their skin.
I get it, sis. The struggle is real right now. Your stress levels are high, your budget is tight, and your skincare regimen is the last thing on your mind, but this LA-based creative knows that skincare is self-care and she's intentional about boffum.
23-year-old social media influencer, Nyzeire recently sat down with xoNecole and explained that a little R&R—regimen and relaxation—can be the key to getting your self-careand your skincare game all the way together at the same damn time. The creative explained, "I've learned over the years that skincare is a form of self-care and therapy for me. It's no longer a big stressful process, it's something I enjoy and look forward to."
Having a skincare routine that works for you doesn't have to mean blowing a bag, and every high-end skincare product that looks good ain't good for you. Nyzeire explained that she learned early-on that fancy product packaging can lie—but results don't. "[I was] around 15 years old when I was old enough to realize there's actually science behind skincare and a correct order. It's not just about using all the fancy products."
The creative sat down with xoNecole and gave us the tea on the low-maintenance skincare routine that keeps her melanin on glow and we have all the details.
My earliest beauty memory...
"My earliest beauty memory is being in the beauty salon with my dad, who was a barber and seeing the older girls get braids, beads, and all kinds of beautiful styles. I remember saying to myself 'I can't wait until I'm old enough to look like that,' as if a change of hairstyle would make me more beautiful. I enjoyed the transformation of it all."
My most significant beauty lesson...
"My grandmother has always taught me to never be dry. That goes for everything––skin, hair, hands, or personality. And that's that."
My morning routine looks like...
"Mornings for me typically start off slow––starting with reading my daily manifestation, then jumping right up into my morning skincare routine, brushing my teeth, and styling these baby hairs."
For my skincare routine in the AM...
For my skincare routine in the PM...
"I cleanse with black soap because it's antibacterial and great for evening out skin tones––I use this with a skin spin brush. and then follow up with a toner (I change this up often). Currently, I'm using Mario Badescu's Witch Hazel and Lavender Toner. Then I use Mario Badescu's Aloe & Rosewater Facial Spray, CLE Cosmetics Vitamin C Elixir, The Better Skin Co.'s Better Shield Anti-Pollution Serum, and Cryo Activating Hydra Gel by 111Skin to reintroduce moisture. I complete my routine with First Aid Beauty's Arnica Relief & Rescue Mask and Mario Badescu's Rose Lip Balm."
How the seasons change my skin and routine...
"My skincare routine definitely changes depending on the season. During fall and winter it's all about moisture for me, during spring and summer it's about SPF and great oils."
My go-to makeup look consists of...
"My go-to makeup consists of my Fenty Beauty Match Stick Trio. I use Caramel as an easy under-eye concealer, Sinamon as my highlighter, and contour with Espresso. I set my brows with any of my favorite brown mascaras and that's that!"
How I approach beauty from the inside out...
"Masking is an amazing experience for me. 30 minutes of relaxing, drinking hot chocolate, and just some me-time makes me feel lovely."
What self-care looks like to me...
"Face masks, positive affirmations, and an activity that makes me happy like roller skating or painting."
For more Nyzeire, follow her on Instagram!
Shop Nyzeire's Beauty Staples:
*Some links are affiliate links. If you purchase an item from an affiliate link, xoNecole might earn a small commission.
First Aid Beauty
Featured image courtesy of Instagram/@Nyzeire.
Taylor "Pretty" Honore is a spiritually centered and equally provocative rapper from Baton Rouge, Louisiana with a love for people and storytelling. You can probably find me planting herbs in your local community garden, blasting "Back That Thang Up" from my mini speaker. Let's get to know each other: @prettyhonore.
Whether it was your group chat, social media feed, or your favorite media outlet covering the spectacle, I’m pretty sure you’ve come across the viral Black wedding between actress KJ Smith (Sistas, Raising Kanan) and actor Skyh Black (All the Queen’s Men, Sistas). From their grand entrance to Jay-Z, Kayne West, and Beyoncé’s song “Lift Off” to KJ’s standout dance routine and the endless celebrity appearances, it’s an addictive TikTok scroll you can’t help but delve into.
But what many people would be surprised to know is that the couple’s original wedding plan was nothing like what it grew to be. What started as her simply scrolling through posts to get ideas eventually transformed into what the internet knows now as #TheBlackExperience. In an exclusive conversation with xoNecole, KJ walked us through her planning process, the morning of her wedding, and what she thinks of the online response.
Some women have their whole wedding planned out, from the bridal gown and venue to the bridal party and playlist. However, KJ was not one of those people. “I didn’t foresee a wedding in my future,” she reveals. “I was just gonna be the boss chick, rich auntie. I didn’t force love in my life until recently. I never had an idea of what a dream wedding would look like, it was easier for me to elope.”
Photo by Stanley Babb/ Stanlo Photography
And to many people’s surprise, that was their original plan – until Skyh brought up a valid concern. He was raised by his grandmother and thought she should be at the wedding, and naturally, that led to KJ wanting her grandmother to be there as well – then her mom – and later her sister – and, you’ve gotta invite the besties too, right? From there, the guest list continued to blossom. Much like the updo and pop of color bold red lip, she wore on her special day, which was initially on her Pinterest board as a soft glam look with her hair hanging on her shoulders, KJ is okay with changing her plan if it brings her and her loved ones happiness.
So let’s get into the wedding, which took place in Malibu, CA. The first thing you should know about the celebrity couple is that they’re non-traditional. They know, and they don’t care. So, in true unconventional fashion, they shared the morning of the wedding together.
“I woke up with Skyh, we walked our dog, had black coffee, and said good morning to the people who stayed at the venue with us,” she says.
Now, it was time for hair and makeup. While she was getting glammed up, she had Black-owned McBride Sisters wine and champagne (which ties into The Black Experience theme) on deck with her mom and friends, had her besties help rework her vows, retried on every outfit (sis is very Type-A), took photos, and ended the early-celebration with prayer and meditation. It seems very non-Bridezilla, I said.
“Yeah, I was the most unbothered bride ever. Everyone was just so supportive. As entertainers, we go on red carpets all the time. We actually have a production company,” she explains. “The get-ready process was like a day at work, but with people we love the most. Being entertainers, we didn’t feel stressed at all, but my excitement was so high.”
Things moved quickly, and before she knew it, it was time to line up to walk down the aisle.
“Yeah, I was the most unbothered bride ever. Everyone was just so supportive. As entertainers, we go on red carpets all the time. We actually have a production company. The get-ready process was like a day at work, but with people we love the most. Being entertainers, we didn’t feel stressed at all, but my excitement was so high.”
KJ Smith and her bridal party
Photo by Stanley Babb/ Stanlo Photography
Since everything started with their grandmothers, the couple wanted to ensure they honored them and planned to keep an element of their wedding traditional. Although we’ve all seen the reception videos and photos online, you may have noticed visuals from the wedding itself are harder to find.
“We planned for it to be traditional, but we’re not like that, so we tried to create those moments. We jumped the broom and had a salt ceremony (where the bride and groom individually pour salt into a glass container, symbolizing their lives becoming one.) But honestly, still, nothing was traditional about it.”
She goes on to explain that her mom caught the holy ghost coming down the aisle, her glam team was on deck, and she became so nervous with excitement that she had an anxiety attack – something she struggled with for years, she explains tearfully. Her friends had to literally cheer her down the aisle because of how overwhelmed she felt until she eventually calmed down.
“Skyh was standing there with his hand on his heart; we have our own little language, and I could feel the support,” she shares.
It was surprising to hear all these emotional moments happened before the party we saw online. That is until she once again got into the backstory.
“As a Black woman actress, for so long, it was popular to be mysterious and secretive, but that’s not who I am or what I like. Plus, we both wanted to create an experience for everyone there. We are the people who always host family and friends,” she says. “Like for me, the first order of business was getting sandals for the women so they can dance all night long. We had oxtail, D'ussé, and a coffee and sativa lounge – which is part of Skyh and I’s lifestyle and routine. We wanted to bring them into our world.”
Skyh Black (L) and KJ Smith (R)
Photo by Stanley Babb/ Stanlo Photography
She went on to discuss the dance routine she did for her husband at the reception, which has taken over the internet. Apparently, that’s another thing that didn’t go according to plan. According to KJ, she had promised a performance at their joint bachelor/ bachelorette party, but her outfit got stolen from her car. So, Skyh ended up performing for her – complete with a strip tease. Still, she never forgot her promise to dance for him.
So, she hired her friend as a choreographer, learned the routine, made friends and family watch it endless times, and attended Beyoncé’s Renaissance show a few days before for a confidence boost. It ended up being a show to remember. But that wasn’t all the night offered. Lil Mo performed, and the guests received special goody bags featuring their favorite Black-owned products like journals, hair care, and more.
“We made sure everyone was taken care of all night. That kind of stuff makes us happy. I wanted everyone there to experience the joy and love I have for myself, my partner, and for them. I wanted them to feel full and whole, and they had the time of their lives,” she says.
But naturally, the internet is going to internet, and while there were countless people praising the event and applauding the newlyweds, some thought it was too over the top. I was curious to know her thoughts on some of the criticism.
“It’s cool. We did what we wanted to do. I’ve decided to share my world with people. Just how I went on social media platforms and found inspiration, I want people to do the same,” she explains. “I don’t think it's fair to my supporters not to give that out. There’s so much I wanna share with brides, specifically Black brides. I love that people are adding it to their Pinterest boards."
"I wanted everyone there to experience the joy and love I have for myself, my partner, and for them. I wanted them to feel full and whole, and they had the time of their lives."
Photo by Stanley Babb/ Stanlo Photography
“I’m happy with it because we did what we wanted to do. They can do what they wanna do. Don’t be cruel, though, because you will get blocked,” she said, laughing.
The more I spoke with her, the more her sense of freedom shined through. People are always going to have their opinions, but at the end of the day, it’s you who has to live your life, and it seems like the couple realizes that and embraces that power. She also stressed the importance of not living for others and the lessons life has taught her.
“I’ve been to countless weddings, and I’ve been in countless weddings. I’m a generally older bride. So when women in my demographic get married, and you and your husband are busy working people like us, you deserve to have the one you want to have,” she shares.
“This is what we wanted to do. Our loved ones love and support us. We did so much to honor them, but we also wanted to start our own tradition, legacy, and creation. I'm not going to be pulled back into ideas of the past when I’m trying to create a future with my partner. “
If you’d like to see more of the couple, you probably won’t have to wait long. Although no content is planned yet, she admits to being an oversharer. “Me being open and transparent about my experiences lets people know it’s okay to have flaws; it makes you human, and for many years, I didn’t believe that was okay. I had pressure to be perfect, and I’d crumble every time,” she explains to xoNecole.
Now, she owns her flaws and uses them as a superpower to connect with her community and feel and express her love.
“Some people give us [Skyh and KJ] a hard time because they say we just seem too perfect. I’m like, why is that a bad thing? I love the people I love. From my man to my mama, to my friends - unabashedly. We move through time and space how we want to move. If we did it another way, we’d let ourselves and our union down.”
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Feature image by Stanley Babb/ Stanlo Photography
These 30-minute to 1-hour-long strolling adventures have given us a way to clear our minds and listen to our favorite songs, all while staying active and getting our bodies moving. And while we may have grown accustomed to having a fire playlist or podcast as the soundtrack to our walks, there's a new, more mindful alternative that’s taking a spin on your sidewalk struts.
“Silent walks” are the new walking trend that’s offering a deeper mind and body connection while taking a solo walk. Sure, the thought of having to take a walk for any duration of time while alone with your thoughts may seem unnatural, but you may be surprised to learn that tapping into that silence around you could give you an extra boost of clarity that you’re looking for.
As explained by the creator of “silent walks,” TikTok user Mady Maio, the idea was sparked by her boyfriend challenging her to take a distraction-free walk without the audio support of music or podcasts. While she was resistant to the challenge because her “anxiety could never,” Maio soon found that after two minutes of her mind going “haywire,” she was able to tap into a flow state that allowed her to hear herself and her thoughts more clearly.
#stitch with @KENZIEELIZABETH WE’RE SILENT WALKING ALL SUMMER, BABE 🚶 #walkinggirls #girlswhowalk #meditativewalk #intentionalwalk
Many times when we go on walks, the goal is to either get fresh air or clear our minds from all the mental junk that’s been floating around throughout the day. But when we don’t allow ourselves the space to sit in silence, our inner voice can be drowned out by external distractions and stimuli.
As the creator of the trend notes, God, the Universe, or whichever higher power you connect to has a tendency to speak in whispers. But if we’re unable to tap into quiet and still moments within our days, we could miss an opportunity to receive the answers that could come to us in the silence.
Silence allows us to tap into a meditative state. When we practice quieting our minds and focusing our attention inward, without the use of external guidance or verbal cues, we’re able to decrease brain fog, find solutions to our tangled thoughts, and let new ideas flow.
Silent walks also connect back to the original goals of its predecessor, hot girl walks, which encouraged walkers to focus on three main things: their goals, how they’re going to achieve those goals, and all the things they’re grateful for. Only this time, you're getting your dopamine hit from the thoughts you’re able to produce as opposed to the music, podcast, and phone calls you’re typically tuned into.
When channeled properly, silence is the gift that keeps on giving. With many people finding silent walks to be a valuable tool for reducing stress, enhancing mental clarity, and increasing overall well-being, this is your invitation to leave the headphones at home and plug into the world around you on your next outdoor journey.
Featured image by Xavier Lorenzo/Getty Images