As far as outer beauty goes, the two things that I've personally committed to doing over the next 12 months is to be intentional about pampering my skin and to also do what it takes to gain more inches when it comes to my hair. Two items that are proving to make both of those things happen are MSM and Chebe powder. In fact, both of these are so bomb that I've been doing more research so that I can feel confident in recommending them to other people.
In the process of all of the stuff that I've been reading on MSM and Chebe, I've also discovered some other natural beauty trends that I thought you should know about. What's cool about all of the things on this list is they are about using less chemicals and being more natural. As a direct result, they're good for your health, the environment and—when it comes to the last trend on here—our community too.
If you're someone who is all about beauty trends and you want to know what kind of tip 2020 plans to be on, here are some natural-related beauty trends that you can definitely feel good about. I know that I do.
A “Wake Up” Face
One of the cool things about dating artists is you're sure to be the muse for at least one song. To this day, my last boyfriend is one of the most talented producers I know. Anyway, one of the tunes that he penned for me was called "Wake Up Face"; it was literally about how he prefers to see me au naturale. Maybe he was prophetic because, this year, as far as beauty trends go, one of the most popular ones is women who wear as little make-up as possible. You know what that means, right? In order to pull this one off, your skincare has to be seriously on-point. If you'd like a few pointers in this area, check out "This Is Why Your Skincare Routine Isn't Working", "I Cleared Up My Hyperpigmentation Thanks To This 5-Step Method" and "All-Natural Ways To Keep Your Skin Super Soft This Fall & Winter". Then, at least a couple of times a week, try going out with as little make-up as possible. Your pores will love it, and you just might end up liking it more than you thought you would as well.
Recently, I met a guy whose eyebrows were flawless. As his brother was teasing him about "getting them arched", ole' boy gave the death stare and then said, "No, I get them done." I should've asked him if they were "laminated" since that is currently all the rage as far as brow care goes.
If you've never heard of brow lamination before, the long short of it is, it's a semi-permanent brow procedure that provides the results of microblading without the use of any needles.
Since it straightens brow hairs with a solution that contains keratin (a protein that our hair is made up of), a lot of people are finding it to be their favorite brow care technique, by a long shot. If you want to attempt it at home, check out a DIY tutorial here.
A wise person once said, if we can't eat whatever it is that we're putting on our hair, skin or nails, we probably shouldn't use it. While it's pretty close to impossible to follow this rule to a "T", many cosmetic companies are making it easier to hit the mark, now more than ever. That said, if when you're out looking for some toner, shampoo or any other beauty item, you look at the label and you can't pronounce even one-third of the words on it, you might want to take a pass and search for something else. Our body absorbs the chemicals that we use, and with recent headlines like "Here's One More Reason Black Women Should Stop Processing Our Hair: Breast Cancer", a beauty trend like transparent labels is something that we all should get behind and support.
With Americans using around a trillion gallons of water each year, and something as simple as a leaky faucet resulting in 10 gallons being wasted a day, it would make sense that caring for the environment would include being proactive about our water consumption. Some cosmetic companies are addressing this by making water-free products. Aside from the fact that it can help to preserve something that we all need in order to stay alive, water-free cosmetics make it easier to travel with. Plus, they tend to have a longer shelf life. A great example of water-free skincare is an article that we featured last year—"Everyone's Raving About The 10-Step Korean Skincare Routine". Check it out when you get a chance to see if it's something that could possibly work for you.
If you've ever wondered if you have sensitive skin, here are some telling signs—your skin is always dry; beauty products always tend to create a rash, burn or sting; your skin doesn't react well to fragrances or artificial coloring; you breakout easily; your skin is sensitive to the sun; your skin is constantly itchy and/or your skin "reacts" to extreme weather like sun, cold and wind. If this is the case, it's best to use beauty products that are customized for sensitive skin. Luckily, this is your year because these are the kind of items that will be heavily marketed. If you want to give a few of 'em a shot, some brands that could relieve your symptoms are Cetaphil, Aesop, Josie Maran, Physicians Formula, Glow Recipe, Clinique, Bliss, Eucerin, BE GENTLE and REN.
Who doesn't like to smell good? At the same time, who doesn't want to be healthy too? If your goal is to accomplish both things, you might wanna rethink the kind of perfumes that you wear.
Although a lot of us don't read the ingredients that are on the back of perfume and cologne packages, the reality is many of them are pretty toxic; especially if they contain phthalates. What are those? It's kind of a long story, but the short of it is they are chemical substances that help things to last longer. Problem is, they can also cause problems with your reproductive and endocrine system (for starters).
So, in 2020, make reading perfume labels and opting for phthalate-free perfumes an absolute must. Hello Glow has a list of some of them here.
Something that was big a few years ago and is making somewhat of a comeback is naked manicures. These are more about making sure that your nails are as healthy as possible than focusing on any kind of shape, color or nail design. The benefits that come from getting a naked manicure is they can fade any type of nail discoloration you might have, smooth out any ridges, make your nails stronger and more flexible, increase hydration to your nail beds and cuticles, and provide an overall healthy tone and finish to your nails.
Some of us are so caught up in different nail styles that we don't give our nails a break. Luckily, thanks to naked manicures, you can go a few weeks without powder dipping or gel polish, let your nails breathe, and still be totally on trend.
Products with (More) Essential Oils in Them
Something that I'm a big fan of are essential oils. On the smell tip, they are potent and long-lasting. More than that, every single one has at least five health benefits to them. That's why I smiled when I checked out "Products Featuring Essential Oil Claims to Rise in 2020". If you're someone who only dibbles and dabbles into essential oils every now and again, make this the year that you are intentional about adding them to your health and beauty regimen. Wyndmere Naturals published one of the most helpful essential lists that I've seen in a while to give you the benefits of various oils ("A-Z Guide of Essential Oils"). Oh, and if you're wondering which oils are going to be pretty popular this year, the list includes anything citrusy along with ginger, patchouli, jasmine, vanilla, sandalwood, rose and amber.
Natural and Glossy Lips
Now this is a beauty trend that I can definitely get on board with. I honestly can't tell y'all how many tubes of lip gloss that I have in my possession. All I know is if there was a support group for lip gloss addicts, I'd need to attend. Since minimalism is big in 2020, lip gloss over lipstick will be pretty popular for the next several months. Oh, and even if you choose to wear your brightest red lip stain (which is also a current beauty trend), still apply a layer of gloss over it since the matte look is currently out.
Speaking of gloss, lips aren't the only thing that should have it. "Glossy" eyelids and cheeks will be a big trend too (which you can create with a little bit of sweet almond or avocado oil, by the way).
Inclusion and Diversity
Your grandma can tell you about the days when Fashion Fair was basically the only make-up option for Black women. These days, there are many more items to choose from thanks to companies like Rihanna's Fenty Beauty. As more brands like Mented Cosmetics, Urban Skin Rx, EveryHue Beauty, Thrive Causemetics and Makeup for Melanin Girls all continue to roll out products that complement various ethnicities and skin tones, it is becoming easier and easier to find what works for you and what enhances your natural beauty seamlessly. Definitely something to get hype about as far as enhancing our natural beauty goes, I think. How about you?
Want more stories like this? Sign up for our newsletter here and check out the related reads below:
Feature image by Shutterstock
Did you know that xoNecole has a podcast? Subscribe on Apple Podcasts or Spotify to join us for weekly convos over cocktails (without the early morning hangover.)
- Top 10 Best Beauty & Fashion Articles In 2019 - xoNecole: Women's ... ›
- 8 Current All-Natural Beauty Trends You Can Give The DIY ... ›
- Microlocs Natural Hair Trend - xoNecole: Women's Interest, Love ... ›
- This No-Tension, Low-Maintenence Hair Trend Is Taking Over The Internet - xoNecole: Women's Interest, Love, Wellness, Beauty ›
- All Natural Beauty Trends DIY - xoNecole: Women's Interest, Love, Wellness, Beauty ›
- Makeup Trends 2020: The 10 Biggest Skin & Beauty Looks ... ›
- Cosmetics Business forecasts 5 Global Beauty Trends of 2020 in ... ›
- 'Game-changing' beauty trends for 2020 ›
- 8 beauty trends people will stop wearing by 2020 ›
- 2020 K Beauty Trends According to Soko Glam Founder Charlotte ... ›
- Big beauty trends for 2019 - 13 trends that will be big in 2019 ›
- 15 Trends Changing The Face Of The Beauty Industry In 2020 | CB ... ›
- 6 Trends Shaping The Future Of The $532B Beauty Business ›
- The 2020 Beauty Trend Natural Beauty Inspired by Scandinavian ... ›
- The 8 Biggest Clean Beauty Trends To Watch For In 2020 ›
Different puzzle pieces are creating bigger pictures these days. 2024 will mark a milestone on a few different levels, including the release of my third book next June (yay!).
I am also a Professional Certified Coach. My main mission for attaining that particular goal is to use my formal credentials to help people navigate through the sometimes tumultuous waters, both on and offline, when it comes to information about marriage, sex and relationships that is oftentimes misinformation (because "coach" is a word that gets thrown around a lot, oftentimes quite poorly).
I am also still super devoted to helping to bring life into this world as a doula, marriage life coaching will always be my first love (next to writing, of course), a platform that advocates for good Black men is currently in the works and my keystrokes continue to be devoted to HEALTHY over HAPPY in the areas of holistic intimacy, spiritual evolution, purpose manifestation and self-love...because maturity teaches that it's impossible to be happy all of the time when it comes to reaching goals yet healthy is a choice that can be made on a daily basis (amen?).
If you have any PERSONAL QUESTIONS (please do not contact me with any story pitches; that is an *editorial* need), feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org. A sistah will certainly do what she can. ;)
This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
An author by the name of Alexandra Katehakis once said this about orgasms: “Great spiritual teachers throughout the ages have stated that orgasm is the closest some people come to a spiritual experience because of the momentary loss of self. Why is this true? Because with spiritual sex, you move beyond orgasm into a connection with yourself, your partner, and the divine — recognizing them all as one.”
If it’s counterintuitive to what you’ve ever thought about orgasms, believe it or not, there are even pastors who have said that climaxing is the closest comprehension of heaven on this side of it: it is an extreme kind of bliss that is indescribable and is best experienced between two people who share a sacrificial kind of love for one another.
Although this might seem like a heavy way to intro this particular topic, because the O Method is an orgasm-achieving technique that centers around housing energy, embracing the mental practice of manifestation, and the attempt to achieve the best climaxes ever — it all works together pretty well if you ask me. If you want to take your orgasms to the next level, it’s important that you get out of yourself (to a certain extent), that you see the spiritual role that manifestation plays, and that you are open to trying new things. No doubt about it.
So, let’s learn more about what the O Method is all about and how it very well could be just what you’ve been looking for…even if you didn’t know it.
What Is the “O Method” All About?Giphy
Question: When’s the last time you’ve had an orgasm? Not just any orgasm — I mean a really mind-blowing one (I’ll give you a second to think about it). Now, what if you could manifest that experience to the point where it wasn’t a rare occurrence but something that happened almost every time that you and your partner had sex with each other? How absolutely awesome would that be?
That is pretty much what the O Method is all about — helping you achieve the kind of orgasms (and sexual pleasure, in general) that you desire through the practice of manifestation. And since your biggest sex organ is your brain, it would make perfect sense that even with all of the tips and techniques that you might learn to do as far as your body is concerned, honing in on what you think about is super imperative to sexual fulfillment, too. And that’s just where manifestation comes in.
What If You’ve Never “Manifested” Anything Before?Giphy
Before we get into a quick lesson on manifestation, I think it’s important to mention two things. One, for the cynics, there is a lot of truth in the fact that it’s got some solid spiritual basis to it because even the Good Book says that as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he (Proverbs 23:7). At the same time, that same Good Book tells us that faith without works is dead (James 2:14-26). So, while it is always a good idea to focus on good, positive, and productive thoughts, just thinking about them isn’t enough — at some point, you’ve also gotta get out here and DO something (bookmark that).
Okay, with that mini-sermon out of the way, whether it’s in the bedroom or not, manifestation is basically about focusing on something tangible that you desire, harnessing your energy in such a way that your words and actions are directed towards that longing until what you want, well, manifests. For the record, aside from this having a spiritual backing to it, in many ways, science cosigns on manifesting, too. There is actually a scientific process known as neuroplasticity that consists of reframing your mind so that your actions ultimately end up aligning with your goals — and that is another way to look at manifestation.
So, what if you’re someone who has never set out to do a manifestation practice before? No worries. Something that’s awesome about it is there are several different approaches that you can take.
Some people manifest what they want in their lives via:
- Visualization/Creating vision boards
- Writing down their desires before going to bed (so that they can “download” them into their dream state)
- Creating mantras and affirmations
- Applying the 369 Manifestation Method (you can learn more about that here)
- Learning more about what you want to manifest (which brings forth clarity)
This is important to keep in mind because, when it comes to manifesting the types of orgasms that you want to have, as you can see, you can try different manifestation methods until you find one (or ones) that you are truly comfortable with. One that can ease you into the entire process rather smoothly is something known as sex journaling.
How Sex Journaling Can Actually Help You to Have an OrgasmGiphy
As a writer, I’m a big fan of journaling. Mostly because it’s a way to get out some of your deepest thoughts and feelings so that you’re able to really process what is happening inside of you in a private setting. And when it comes to sex journaling, specifically, it’s all about centering yourself on the things sexually that you want to “unpack,” get clarity on or come to some revelations about. For instance, if there’s only been one partner from your past who’s been able to help you achieve the type of orgasms that you wish to manifest, journaling about what makes him different from the other guys can provide you with some solid ah-ha moments.
Or if you need help getting as specific as possible about the sexual experiences that you’re after, journaling can help to make that happen for you — because one thing that manifesting reminds us all to do is be as specific as possible.
Yeah, simply saying, “I want to have better sex” isn’t detailed enough when you want to get your energy to match with your desires — instead, describe how all of your senses should feel in the experience, along with why, that can get you so much closer to achieving your goal. Once those things are documented, you can segue into creating mantras and/or meditation that are based on them. Yeah, sex journaling really is an underrated superpower on a lot of levels (check out “The Art Of Sex Journaling (And Why You Should Do It)”).
5 Tips for Making the O Method Work for YouGiphy
Now that you know more about what the O Method is and how manifestation plays a direct role in its process, let’s talk about five ways to make the O Method truly effective in your own (sex) life.
1. Focus, FULLY, on your feminine energy. What do rose quartz, amethyst, moonstone (which is a Gemini birthstone as well; yes, I’m a Gemini), selenite, and rhodonite all have in common? They’re crystals that help you to go deeper into your divine feminine energy. Traits that are associated with this include compassion, creativity, kindness, gentleness, and sensuality (feminine energy is also accepting and forgiving). If you were to study energy from a biological standpoint, it’s about producing change, responding to stimuli, and having the ability to do what needs to be done (work). So, when it comes to manifesting the kind of orgasms or sexual experiences that you want, using things like your creativity and gentleness in your thoughts and actions can play a role in bringing balance to your partner’s masculinity, which can create a profound sense of pleasure — after all, opposites do attract.
2. Don’t hold back on what it is that you desire. Whenever I interview sex therapists, something that they all say is, a huge mistake that people make as far as sexual satisfaction is concerned is, they have walls up — not just with their partners but even within themselves. Sometimes, there is intimidation, fear, or even shame around what they really want to happen during sex to the point where they aren’t able to channel their energy fully in those directions in order to manifest what they want. For the O Method to work, you can’t let those types of negative emotions hinder you; the more you are able to articulate what you want and how you want it, the better chance you have of making it happen. So yes, get graphic. As graphic as possible.
3. Make manifestation a daily practice. Repetition is important when it comes to manifestation. That’s because the more you declare what you desire (a mantra), get still and think on it (meditation), or look at the “art” that you’ve created surrounding it (visualization), the quicker it becomes a part of you. So yes, make manifestation a daily practice. For instance, if one of your mantras is, “I am going to have intensely passionate orgasms, one right after the other,” don’t just state that 15 minutes before sex is going to happen. Wake up and declare it. Then say it on your lunch break. And again before turning in. The more your thoughts are “streamlined” in this way, the easier it will be for your body to follow suit.
4. Share this practice with your partner. If you were to do even more research on the O Method, one thing that most of the articles will mention is it’s a practice that you can do alone or with your partner. Indeed. However, I just want to make sure that you get into your psyche that great sex is, in part, about good communication. And so, the more comfortable you are sharing with your partner what you are doing as far as the O Method is concerned and what you ultimately want to happen as a result of the practice, the easier it will be for him to “match your energy” — both in and out of the bedroom. And when your partner is on the same page as you? That definitely increases the chances of attaining your sexual desires — exponentially so.
5. Stay in the moment. While I was reading one article on manifestation, I really appreciated something that the author said: manifestation isn’t some supernatural power. In other words, while it can be beneficial, it’s not like you can just think of something, and it instantly appears out of nowhere. Manifesting is a discipline, and it must be accompanied by action, consistency, and patience — this means that you must also practice mindfulness. Meaning, now that you know better what you’re looking to achieve as far as sex is concerned, every time that it transpires, maintain a level of positive energy, remember what your end goal is, and then determine in your mind to enjoy the moments as they come. Remember, manifestation isn’t to add stress…it’s to cultivate clarity.
At the end of the day, the O Method is simply a way of reminding you that your mind plays a huge role in your sexual pleasure, and when you channel it and your energy exactly where you want them both to go, you’ll be amazed what your body is capable of doing…and accomplishing.
So, what kind of orgasm are you wanting to achieve? You’ve got a tool to get you there. USE IT.
Let’s make things inbox official! Sign up for the xoNecole newsletter for daily love, wellness, career, and exclusive content delivered straight to your inbox.
Featured image by Giphy