Who wouldn’t love to make money, travel and live an exciting, elite lifestyle as the result of their childhood best friends? Raises hand!Khadijah and Malika Haqq, aka “The Haqq Twins” are the stars of the E! series, DASH Dolls, the fifth spin-off from the Keeping Up With The Kardashians empire.
It’s no secret that the world has a love-hate relationship with the Kardashian-Jenner’s. Say what you want about them, but they’re businesswomen and branding gurus. They serve as executive producers of the series and have always showed their love and appreciation for the bubbly twins. However, many "friends” of celebrities get a bad rep for being “famous by association.”
In an industry, where it can be hard to discern who truly wants to be your friend and who solely wants the perks of fame, wouldn’t you want your “ride-or-dies”/ “A1s since day ones” who were “with you shooting in the gym” to be by your side every step of the way? Or naw? As the best friends of Khloé Kardashian, Malika and Khadijah have been constantly mired with the question, “what do you do?”
Though reality TV may not seem like a “real job” few people are actually brave enough to handle the scrutiny that comes with exposing every aspect of their lives for someone else’s entertainment.
Prior to Keeping Up…, Malika and Khadijah were budding actresses having had memorable roles as Veda and Star in T.I’s film, ATL and several other productions. Soon after, Khadijah married her husband, former New Orleans Saints player Bobby McCray, and the couple had two kids [and one from Bobby’s previous relationship] and the twins' acting careers were placed on the back burner.
Now being at the center of their own series where they wrangle the employees of the DASH boutique in Beverly Hills, Malika and Khadijah are also showcasing very personal aspects of their lives.
In an exclusive interview with xoNecole, Malika and Khadijah address the criticism of their success and their association with the Kardashians. Malika shares the importance of accepting yourself and knowing your worth. While Khadijah gives awesome advice on how to ensure you’re not inaccurately portrayed on reality TV. She also gives insight to how she’s balancing motherhood with the increasing demands of her revived career.
When did you know it was the right time to do the DASH Dolls spinoff and have the focus of the series be about your lives?
Khadijah: [Kim, Khloé and Kourtney] all have very busy schedules, but the DASH boutique is very important to them so they asked Malika and I to be their eyes and ears when they couldn’t be in the store. If something were to go wrong, they wanted to know they had two people they could trust that could take care of it and that’s how it started. It was a show without cameras. They wanted us to be involved with the store and there to wrangle the girls. It was their idea to create the show and that’s why they’re Executive Producers of the series. I don’t think we’d be doing reality if it weren’t for them and the opportunity that they entrusted us with and wanted to extend to us.
Malika: People ask me all the time, ‘What do you do?’ I’ve been on the same show [Keeping Up With The Kardashians] for eight years, that’s what I do! On top of that, I didn’t really want to have an acting career by myself, I was so used to doing it with my sister. I pretty much went from one security blanket to the next. I was comfortable working with her and when I wasn’t doing that anymore, I was comfortable working with my best friend. I also assisted Khloé for a while. I was on the Khloé & Lamar spin off, I was in several episodes of Kourtney & Kim Take Miami. I’ve always been in a reality space. I did a movie called Somebody Help Me 2. That was the only film role I took once I stopped acting with my sister.
Khadijah: But she’s capable of doing it by herself, which is the point…
Malika: To be totally honest, I’m just doing what works for me. Over the years I haven’t been as decisive about choosing what I wanted to do because where I was came so easily to me. I wasn’t forced into being in another environment or to get another reality job. I wasn’t forced to get another acting role. I was literally loved and accepted for a very long time as a character that I’ve been on “Keeping Up…” So I think DASH Dolls is great because now everyone can see that my sister is ready to get back to work so it made perfect sense for she and I to do this together.
In the series, we saw Kim [Kardashian-West] trying to persuade you to embrace your individuality. How have you gone out creating opportunities for yourself separate of your sister?
Malika: I’m still learning how to be by myself. The strongest criticism I continuously receive is, ‘get out from other people’s shadow’ and ‘don’t do everything that someone else is doing.’ Ultimately, I came into this world with someone else, all I know is togetherness.
I’ve been blessed to be able to work with my family and my friends. My effort is very different than most people that come into the world by themselves; I’ve had to learn how to be an individual and I’m still working on it.
I just did an acting job by myself on Family Time (Bounce TV). I’m proud of myself for being able to push myself. My sister came to set with me, but there are certain ways in which I’m not comfortable doing things by myself.
Now clearly, I’ll take my clothes off (laughs) [referring to her nude photo shoot in the premiere episode] but I’m simply not as independent when it comes to approaching new things by myself, but it's something I’ll perfect over time and I’m not being hard on myself about it anymore.
What should people know about the behind the scenes aspects of reality TV?
Khadijah: It’s not as easy as it looks. Your reality is what you work for. I know people always question ‘what are we known for? and ‘what’s your talent?’ At the end of the day, there’s a market for reality TV but that doesn’t mean it’s just given to you freely. It’s still something you have to work for. It’s not like being an actor or singer; there are actually a lot more grueling hours filming a reality show but you only see thirty minutes or an hour from a week of taping.
This is a business and people assume that if you can recreate these situations for yourself via social media, then you can be a reality star and it’s not that simple. We’ve heard, 'it’s about time you all get your own show.' but we weren’t looking for it. I was literally going through the motions in life. I was growing up, becoming a woman, a wife and a mother. Eventually that’s going to happen for Malika and people going to say ‘Where’d she go? What is she doing?’ She’s taking on another role in her life. That’s what happened to us and through our friends we’ve been blessed to have this platform at the perfect time in our lives.
Reality TV and social media ironically creates a false sense of reality and unrealistic professional and professional expectations. For girls that are admiring who you are at age 32, what would you tell your younger self?
Malika: Don’t take yourself so seriously! I changed so much in my 20s and I’m open to changing again. I can’t even tell you that I knew who I was until 28 or 29. Once you realize that it’s most important to be comfortable with the person you are, you can become the woman you want to be. Don’t be as critical on yourself and don’t take peoples opinions so harshly. Also, you don’t have to take everyone home with you. No one makes a difference in whether you eat or sleep but you.
Be nice to yourself. I see younger women be so hard on themselves. I would say to my younger Malika, 'I’m sorry.' They made me do that in therapy. I’ve said sorry to myself so many times and I really meant it because I didn’t have to be so hard on myself but when you think about being in this business as an actress, then I stopped acting and now I’m trying to get back in, it’s a lot.
I get a lot criticism for supposedly being in the shadow of other people, but there’s nothing wrong with not wanting to be in the front. I had to learn and go through my own process to figure out what I was truly comfortable with.
I’ve made some good decisions and some bad decisions but I’m okay with that, you have to be forgiving of yourself. Everyone isn’t going to like you and that’s okay too, all you have to do is like yourself.
Khadijah: Social media is a fad, I don’t necessarily think its going to slow down but since we grew up in an era that wasn’t so driven by peoples criticisms, I still don’t give a sh*t. Maybe it’s because not only have I had to grow up but I had to start living for my three children. I’ve had to make mistakes and mend relationships, but you start to look at what really matters which is your family, your friends and being proud of whatever career path you’re chose. By the time I was 27, I was already married with my first child. You have no idea where your life is going to take you in the next couple of years. Be proud of yourself for wherever you are in this moment. At 24 we were struggling actresses hustling, auditioning, taking slaps in the face [metaphorically], doors opening, doors closing and right back to the same thing. When people ask why don’t we act anymore, well it’s not always that easy. Life happens; it’s all a balancing act, but you have to learn to juggle all of your responsibilities in a way that makes you happy.
You both are beautiful brown women! Being associated with a family that places so much emphasis on looks, have you ever had any issues with accepting yourself and having a positive self-image?
Malika: Accepting yourself is something people can see and until you do, it’s not attractive to others.
[Tweet "Really, truly, accepting yourself is the most attractive thing in the world, it’s beautiful. "]
I never had to be taught to love my skin, I just did. I was raised by a strong black woman who raised her children by herself. My mother taught us to be strong, beautiful, confident and to follow our hearts. She always said, “I trust you to make good decisions” and that stuck with me more than anything anyone has ever said to me in my life. You can do anything once you accept yourself. There are women who will tell you, ‘I’m not the most attractive, but I’m the most confident.’ I look at them and I may think I have a better body but I’ll say ‘wow she wears everything so well’ because of her confidence.
Many people who’ve participated in reality TV end up saying they were inaccurately portrayed, how do you stop that from happening?
Khadijah: The camera catches exactly what you do. Malika says this all the time and it’s the best thing ever, ‘You don’t see yourself.’
Sometimes people don’t know who they are without a camera in their face and then they sign up for reality TV and they’re shocked when they discover how they truly interact with others. Watching yourself on TV allows to say, ‘Wow, is this who I am?’
Regardless of editing, the camera can’t catch what you don’t give it. I told the Dash Dolls when they were nervous and intimidated by the cameras, I said ‘listen, if you don’t dance on a table, the camera won’t show you dancing on a table! You give a good smile, it’ll see your good smile.’ So it is what it is.
What have people underestimated about you? What will we learn this that would intrigue the audience to keep watching?
Malika: We’re finally giving people the opportunity to have an opinion about us. We’re exposing our lives and our journeys. I share the lack of relationship that I have with my father and how that’s affected me and my choices when it came to dating and having self-confidence.
To be frank, I’ve never really thought I would have a successful relationship with a man because the first man I ever loved, my father, that relationship didn’t work.
I’ve grown so much in the last year in my confidence when it comes to not having a relationship with someone that is hurtful to me. There’s a lot going on in season one of DASH Dolls. I lived it, now I’m ready to learn even more by watching it back.
There’s this myth that women in entertainment can only be a wife and a mother at the detriment of their career. Khaijah, as you transition back into acting, what do you want other young ladies to know about having balance?
Khaijah: Once you have kids, you have to feed them! And it takes a functioning household to make sure that your children have everything they need and that’s the most important thing to me. It was also very important for me to be home with my kids to experience what it was like to be a mother. But I did start to get the itch of wanting to go to back to work because Malika and I have been acting all our lives. I have two sons and a daughter; I want her to see that she has a working mother. I want Malika and I to be the best first examples of independent working women.
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.
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Featured image by Giphy