As the sun shines and the weather heats up, we're inching closer to a breakout summer like no other. With most of us excited to be outdoors with our loved ones, it's time to get into the looks we've been mentally preparing for the past year and a half sitting at home. While I've gotten accustomed to the basic black and heather grey combinations from the loungewear overload we experienced, those dark days are finally over and I'm ready to brighten up my summer wardrobe.
Experimenting with color in your day to day outfits is never a bad idea. Although I love the thought of wearing both bold and soft pastels this season, I live for a chic neutral aesthetic. What inspires me most about this season's color trends is mixing and matching a variety of pigments and neutral tones together to create a refreshing balance to an everyday look. Whether a head to toe nude outfit or pairing pops of bold color with muted tones, even the slightest details can take you very far this season in a variety of stylish ways.
They say what you wear is an expression of how you feel, and these looks are giving excitement and hope in a world full of possibilities. Check out my noteworthy neutral summer looks with a twist.
1. Yellow is the New Neutral
As Seen on Raven Smith
All neutrals are not created equally. Implementing a soft pastel yellow this summer paired with nude accents takes blending in while standing out to a new level. The perfect way to ease back into a color this season, this comfy two-piece short set makes a subtle yet casual statement that's nothing short of effortlessly cool.
2. Cool Tones
As Seen on Courtney Simpson
A hint of mint is a refreshingly cool mix to classic neutral tones. Paired with a chic white boot and light washed denim, layering a white blazer magically highlights this tonal combination. Neutrals don't always equal nude. Experimenting with neutrals such as white and cool pastels brings life to a classic denim look.
3. So Complementary
As Seen on Dime Jones
For your upcoming RSVPs this summer, accentuating the little black dress with a contrasting nude is a sophisticated work of art. Black is the perfect neutral to create an effortless timeless look, balanced with a subtle soft nude brightens up this gorgeous silhouette. Add a red lip for an extra pop of elegance.
4. The Coolest Hue
As Seen on Sharaye Thomas
Layer one of summer's coolest hues with chic neutral accessories for an on-the-go athleisure look. Blue is trending as one of the most in-demand colors of the season, so adding a nude contrast is a major compliment to this super cute eye-catching look. The blazer is a perfect addition to this active set as it works perfectly together in creating a beautiful balance of color.
5. Natural Habitat
As Seen on Brittany
Vacation-ready is an understatement. Even in the tropics, this neutral coverup is a naturesque take on luxury swimwear. Bring your poolside look to life by adding a bold sunny with chunky jewelry, making it a look that can easily transition on and off the beach.
6. In the Abstract
As Seen on Ellie
Adding neutrals to a bold palette with a soft nude blazer layered over a brightly colored ensemble for a casual everyday approach. The compliments of tangerine orange mixed with a multicolored tie dye swirl is the definition of comfy chic attire. While wearing neutral, there's more fun to play around with random pops of color. I'm loving that colorful shades are having a moment making a great addition to this stunning mix of creative style.
7. Gal on the Go
As Seen on Wura Ogunsanya
Paired with a classic Nike sneaker, these sand colored textured pants are an elegant twist to a casual cute everyday look. Accessorized with pops of deep colorful green and orange tones, I'm hunting down every item to add on my summer wishlist. Love this classic white asymmetrical crop top underneath a matching white blazer for a crisp and clean addition to this must-have look.
8. In Luxury
As Seen on Nana Agyemang
This summer is giving designer luxe one Jacquemus dress at a time. A stunning go-to spring/summer look, this sand-colored bodycon silhouette takes chic to a new level. Its all in the details as the cut adds a touch of sex appeal with the perfectly placed pops of skin.
To get your fashion fix and to stay up to date with the latest trends, check out the xoNecole Style section here.
Featured image by Sharaye Thomas/Instagram
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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
Meagan Good Shares How She Overcame Skin Bleaching Accusations Following Skincare Mishap
In 2020, actress Meagan Good faced criticism and allegations of skin bleaching after fans noticed a significant change in her melanated complexion.
To make matters worse, many voiced their opinions on social media by expressing either their disappointment in Good or demanding clarification. At the time, the Harlem star revealed that her lighter skin tone wasn't intentional but a result of a botched beauty product recommended by an unlicensed esthetician to help tackle the sun damage she obtained on her face over the years.
Since Good's revelation, the skin-bleaching chatter among fans has ceased, and her complexion ultimately returned. During a recent interview withESSENCE, the 41-year-old spoke about the lessons she's learned through the ordeal, mainly how not to care about the opinions of others.
Meagan on the Backlash and How It Affected Her
In the discussion, the Think Like a Man star disclosed that when she became aware of the skin-bleaching accusations that circulated online, she felt powerless over the false narrative.
Good claimed that a positive shift occurred after praying to God when she recognized that this period of her life was meant to help her overcome the need for external validation.
"I was like, I look so crazy. I just have to sit in this and let people think what they want to think, and there's nothing I can do about it," she explained. "But I remember when I was praying, I felt a peace come over me, and I was like, 'this is an answer to a prayer.' I didn't realize it at the time, but my concern with what other people thought about me was such a thing that I had to go through something like that where I literally had no other option, and I had to find my joy and my peace regardless of what everyone was thinking."
Meagan on How the Past Criticism Helped Her Prepare for the Public Demise of Her Marriage to DeVon Franklin
Later, Good mentioned that the experience helped her become better equipped for when she and her ex-husband DeVon Franklin announced in December 2021 that they were going their separate ways after nine years of marriage because it forced her to be free from others' judgment.
"I had to be put in that place in order for me to get as free as I am now. By the time I got to the divorce and all of that, it was like, 'I'm okay,'" she said.
Good and Franklin's divorce would be finalized the following year, in June 2022. To date, Good is seemingly living her best life as a single woman and sharing joyful moments on her social media page.
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Feature image by Leon Bennett/Getty Images