Fashion & Beauty

I decided to grow out my naturally curly hair way back in 2009, and I have never regretted that decision. I have never felt more like myself than I do with natural hair. But one of the biggest adjustments was learning how to care for it, and that there is a difference between what I do and the products I use in the winter and what I do during the summer. So when Walmart asked me to share some summer beauty tips, my hair was my first thought. If you’re struggling to care for your hair in the heat of the summer, here are some of my favorite tips for keeping it beautiful and manageable.

Moisturize, then moisturize again


Once upon a time, I thought my hair needed oil for moisture. Once I went natural, I quickly learned that what my hair needs instead is water. A lot of water. In the summer, when there is no worry of getting sick from walking out the door with a head full of wet hair, I like to spray it with either straight water, or a water-based spray like Carol’s Daughter Hair Milk Refresher Spray (available at Walmart) at least once or twice a day, preferably at night before retwisting. This is especially true for my youngest daughter, whose hair is very prone to dryness. A quick spray and retwist leaves her hair well moisturized and glossy the next day.

Add oil after water

When I wash my hair in the summer, I like adding a light penetrating oil throughout my strands to help seal in the moisture from the water. My hair tends to prefer olive or avocado oil, but coconut oil works for a lot of naturals as well. After washing, simply squeeze out excess water, pull the oil through your hair from root to tip, then condition as you normally would. This process leaves my hair soft and well-moisturized, exactly how I like it.

Lose the Split Ends


I admit that I have a hard time with this one myself. I am not a fan of cutting my hair. But in my experience, holding on to my broken, uneven ends just makes my hair prone to tangles and make it difficult to retain length. This becomes even more true in the summer when I’m more likely to become lazy with my hair and ignore an issue like this. I’m in need of a trim right now, in fact.

Deep Wash After Swimming

For the most part, I co-wash my hair, meaning I wash primarily with conditioner. But during the summer, when we’re more likely to go swimming in chlorine or salt water, it is important to wash it out thoroughly and deep condition your hair. My favorite clarifying shampoo is Shea Moisture’s African Black Soap Deep Cleansing Shampoo, and I love using their Raw Shea Butter Restorative Conditioner for deep treating my strands.

What other tips do you have for naturalistas who are trying to care for their hair in the scorching summer? Feel free to share in the comments below!

Disclosure: As a participant in the Walmart Moms Program, I’ve received product samples and compensation for my time and efforts in creating this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Affiliate links have been used.

Outfit: Summer Dressing

Can I be honest for a second? Summers in Georgia are generally too damn hot to be worried about getting dressed up. Most days, stepping outside feels a lot like turning on a blow dryer in my face at full force, and I just want to wear effortless outfits that don’t require much thought. So when Walmart asked me to shop for a dress, I couldn’t wait to share what I found — because it just might be the perfect summer dress.


I’m actually proud of myself for this one, because I typically stay away from strapless dresses because large boobies. But thanks to an awesome strapless bra, I can enjoy all the fabulous that is this dress.



This strapless floral maxi from No Boundaries is the kind of dress that you I can wear for a day spent chilling with my family, but easily rock it for a date night with the hubby or a more dressy occasion. Even better? It cost me less than $15!


There were a ton of other great maxi and cocktail length summer dresses to choose from as well, including a super cute halter scarf dress that I couldn’t find in my size. But this one? I am genuinely in love, and I’m going to be wearing it every chance I get.

Disclosure: As a participant in the Walmart Moms Program, I’ve received product samples and compensation for my time and efforts in creating this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Affiliate links have been used.

Memorial Day is regarded as the “official” start of summer, and lots of families take advantage of the occasion with cookouts or trips to the beach or pool. Our Memorial Day celebration is a bit different: Every year (except last year, because toddler), we spend the whole weekend celebrating Atlanta’s Caribbean Carnival. There are parades, concerts, picnics and parties, and there is usually a nonstop rush of stuff to do.

As such, our Memorial Day outfit planning has to account for the fact that we want to be cute, but need to be comfortable. This is especially true for Juliza. We’ll spend pretty much all day Saturday and Sunday outdoors, so anything she wears needs to be cool. And though we’ll have both a stroller and my favorite structured baby carrier on hand, I know she’ll spend a lot of time running around, so her clothes need to be comfortable enough to allow that.

When Walmart challenged me to find some Memorial Day outfits for her, I headed to my local store with these things in mind. And we managed to walk away with two outfits that are both super cute and comfy enough for a hot, busy weekend.

Look 1: Garanimals Separates





If I’m 100% honest, I usually stay away from the Garanimals table. I’m usually not a fan of the colors, prints and patterns available, and sometimes, the fit can be off. But on this trip, these polka dot shorts caught my eye on the separate table. For one thing, they were only $4.88, but I’m also a sucker for monochromatic black and white outfits for Juliza, because it’s always easy to complete the outfit with shoes and accessories she already owns. I found a great lace tank top to go with it, also for $4.88, and decided I’d actually take the chance and let her wear a white shirt. Pray for us.





I got these gladiator sandals from Zulily a few weeks ago, and they’ve become fast favorites for both of us. She loves shoes, and she can run around in these comfortably, but I can always switch them out for sneakers if she starts to complain. We added a fabulous handmade, reversible headwrap that just happened to have polka dots on one side, and the look was complete.

Seriously, I’m starting to get jealous of the fact that her wardrobe and shoe game are SO much better than mine!

Look 2: Healthtex Outfit





For the second look, I headed to the racks to find a pre-coordinated outfit. In this case, we were able to get the top, shorts AND flip flops for just $8.98 (and it’s just $7.50 at It’s highly unlikely I’ll let her wear the flip flops while we’re out and about away from home, but she loves wearing them when we go play outside, and I so appreciate the fact that they come with straps, so they actually stay on her feet.





The slippers from the last Healthtex outfit we got at Walmart have already gotten a ton of use, and I know these will get lots of use too. The outfit is almost worth the price for that alone. But the colors and patterns are fabulous too.

I wish I could say that my own Memorial Day outfits are planned and ready to go, but that’s not the case. But that’s OK. At least Juliza is taken care of, and I know she’ll be fly.

Disclosure: As a participant in the Walmart Moms Program, I’ve received product samples and compensation for my time and efforts in creating this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Affiliate links have been used.

Lately, life hasn’t given me many reasons to feel like dressing up. Of course, once upon a time (not that long ago, really), I didn’t need a reason to get dressed. I just did it because it made me feel good. Well, I’m trying to get back in the habit of doing that. And I couldn’t think of a better way to do that than by sharing the new spring/summer collection from LNBF.

You may recall from the last time I wrote about them at LNBF, with stands for “Leave Nothing But Footprints”, is a company dedicated to making beautiful, fashionable clothes that are also eco-friendly. They use fabrics like bamboo, organic cotton and Tencel, and they are among the few companies making sustainable clothing in sizes up to XXL.

Their new collection is amazing — so much so that some of my favorite pieces were already sold out in my size (hello, Vivian Tunic!). But there is so much to choose from that I couldn’t wait to play dress up. Keep reading. There’s a chance for you to do the same at the end of the post.

Look 1



The Katie Tunic Dress is going to the front of my closet for the rest of spring and summer. I’ve been funny about dresses lately, because I haven’t been in the mood to wear anything clingy, and dresses rarely have pockets, which I usually need. (Side note: Who the heck told dress and skirt makers we don’t need pockets? They were wrong!) The Katie dress is silky soft and smooth, so it wears like a dream. It feels like wearing pajamas, but about a million times more stylish. And the pockets sealed the deal. Katie and I go together now. Somebody should tell my husband.

This dress is available in colors in sizes up to XXL.

Look 2




Can we talk about how perfect the Heidi Chiffon Tunic is? The bodice made of super soft bamboo. The bottom of the tunic is made of chiffon that is just barely translucent. It’s the kind of top that can really make an outfit, and I’m already planning a bunch of ways I can wear it. I’ll definitely pair it with some distressed denim shorts when the weather gets inevitably hotter. For spring though, I added my favorite straw hat white denim. It’s available in midnight blue, or black with floral chiffon.

Look 3




I don’t know if you can tell, but I feel super cute in the Ellie Dress. Some people say plus size women shouldn’t wear horizontal stripes. Well, I’ve never been the type of pay much attention to fashion rules. I prefer to wear what makes me feel good, and this dress? Makes me feel amazing. It is soft and flouncy and chic. I can wear with with a denim jacket or chambray shirt, or bare my arms when it gets too hot to cover them up. Ellie is also available in four colors.

Look 4



Last, but most certainly not least, is the Alexa Tunic Dress. This dress is a bit heavier than the rest, so I’ll likely wear it on cooler days. But I LOVE the mesh detail at the top. It makes the whole look feel less casual and more dressed up. It’s the kind of dress you could easily wear to work, then switch shoes and accessories for a night out. Get it in black or midnight blue.


Now are you ready? It’s your turn to get fancy. LNBF wants to bless one of you with a $100 gift card so you can try out their spring & summer collection! Enter via the Rafflecopter below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Bonus! Coupon Code

If you want to start shopping now (or get the most out of your gift card, if you’re the winner) get 20% off! That’s right! LNBF is offering Green & Gorgeous readers 20% off with coupon code GREENLOVE20.

Disclosure: I received clothing for review from LNBF. All opinions stated here are my own and completely accurate.

My family has lived in Georgia for a total of more than a decade, but I admit, we haven’t seen as much of it as we’d like. We’re creatures of habit, and we tend to frequent the same places we’ve always gone. That’s mostly my doing, I’m sure. I tend to prefer the familiar. But since Juliza and I started having fun with fashion, I’ve become a lot more adventurous.

Why? Well, let’s just say our back yard makes for OK photos in a pinch, but I can only take so many photos on red clay and patchy grass before I crave a different backdrop. And since Juliza is much more comfortable and natural when we shoot outdoors, I’ve been doing my best to find unique locations for us to shoot. Last week, we took an unexpected hike on a park trail to find beautiful graffiti. I’ll share that outfit later. This week, we found an absolutely enchanting backdrop just 5 minutes from our house.



Hello waterfall!

While we go to parks all the time, we never knew this one existed, and we definitely didn’t know there was a waterfall. I’m attracted to water like moth to a flame. Blame my Caribbean upbringing. So this was a real treat. Even better? It made the perfect backdrop for an outfit by a company that cares about nature as much as we do: Tor Organics on Etsy.





We’ve been supporting a lot of small shops lately, and we LOVE anything handmade. But Tor is among our favorites because they are a shop after my own heart — they make stylish fashion sustainable. There are too few brands doing that, so we are more than happy to lend them our support.




Now let’s talk about this pinafore skirt. Can we say fabulous? The color is amazing, and I love the suspender straps. The fabric is super soft and thick, but not hot, so the skirt is beautifully full. Juliza had a ball twirling in it. And I had a ball shooting her in it. Can you tell? I only took a few hundred photos 🙂





And honestly? The hardest part of this shoot was getting Juliza to turn away from the waterfall. She was so captivated by it that she wouldn’t turn toward me, no matter how much I called her name. Lol! Such is life when you’re shooting photos of a toddler who just wants to enjoy the scenery. And when it was time to go? She didn’t exactly get upset, but she was clearly not ready.




Don’t worry Juju. Now that we know it exists, we’ll be back to visit the waterfall. We’ll also be working with Tor Organics as Brand Enthusiasts for the next few months, so you’ll see more of them, too 🙂

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OK. I admit I’m having a whole lot of fun with Juliza’s newfound fashionista persona. Since she is really shy around other people (read: She doesn’t like very many people at all), I love seeing her light up in front of the camera. I’m also getting a real kick out of styling all her little outfits.

Case in point: I’ve been seeing slashed/cut/shredded leggings and jeans everywhere for the past few weeks. I thought they’d be super cute on her, and I even found a store making them in her size. But DIY’er that I am, I knew I could make them myself. And make I did.

DIY Slashed Leggings for a Toddler (or Anyone)


You’ll Need:


  • Leggings (preferably old or inexpensive ones, like these from Walmart)
  • Chalk pencil or disappearing ink marker
  • Scissors

For best results, the leggings should fit pretty snugly. If they’re loose, the slashed effect won’t look the same.

Lay your leggings out flat and mark the places where you want to slash with the chalk pencil. I’ve seen people slash all the way down the front middle of both legs, just a couple on one knee, all the way down the sides, etc. There are a million ways you could go with this. Whatever you choose, it is a good idea to leave at least an inch of vertical space between slashes. I chose to do one long slash across the middle, then a shorter slash, alternating sides each time. Like this:


Once you’re happy with the placement of your marks, it’s time to cut. If your slashes are in the middle front of the leggings, you’ll want to fold them so the crease goes straight through the middle of your slashes.


Cut on the fold. In my case, I cut every other slash this way, since the others were placed off center. When you unfold the leggings and lay them flat again, you may find that you have to extend the slashes a bit to center them properly. Just cut a little more in either direction. No biggie.

To cut the off-center slashes, I simply pinched the fabric so it would fold in the center of the mark, then made a small cut on the fold.


This is the result.


This is super simple, and my oldest is already asking me to make her a pair. Shoot. I’ll probably make a pair (or three) for myself too, though I may be more conservative with the cuts.

So, what do they look like when worn? Get ready for image overload, because they were too cute for just a couple of pics.






Seriously, how freaking cute are they? The heart eyes emoji is the only one that could properly capture my swoon level.

Now, for the rest of her fit. Can we talk about this tee for a second?





Juliza and I have jumped head first into the world of Instagram brand repping, and she is a “brand enthusiast” for the shop that makes this tee, Little Royal Tees. It’s a small shop that makes awesome printed tees for babies and kids. And this Lauryn Hill tee? We are in love!





I cannot get enough of it! The top and the Timberland work boots were the perfect badass complements to the slashed leggings. I’m already brainstorming other ways to style the shirt.



And, also, plus, if you love this tee, there are 2 others in the same style: Tupac and LL Cool J. We may or may not have already grabbed the Tupac tee. Yes, please and thank you.

So what about you? Would you make or wear these slashed leggings for yourself or your little one?


One of the things I’ve made it a point to do is make my girls feel empowered about their hair. In a world where naturally curly hair among Black women and girls is only just approaching the realm of mainstream, it is important to me that they know they are beautiful just the way they are. So when I discover a clothing brand designed specifically to help me do that? Yes, please, and thank you!

A few weeks ago, I entered Juliza in a giveaway from FroBabies, an account specifically created to empower and celebrate children with naturally curly or kinky hair. Well, she won one of their fabulous t-shirts, and I couldn’t wait to style her in it!





She’s Wearing: FroBabies t-shirt | Carters denim jeggings (similar), distressed by me | Timberland work boots | Bow necklace (similar) (aff)

As you can see, it took all of about 5 seconds for her to get into photo-ready form. Juliza really is quite the character, and I love her for it.

I styled her hair in a frohawk, and I dare say it is my favorite hairstyle on her, ever.


Seriously, how cute is that?! Swoon!





Anyway, I paired her super cute tee with a pair of jeggings from Carter’s that she’s had for a while. I decided to try my hand at shredding and distressing them. The result was far from perfect, but it was really cute! I’m going to practice on an old pair of jeans so I can do a better job next time.

We also got a pair of Timberland work boots recently, because they’re the perfect study baby shoes, they’re fly as hell and they go with everything.





I can already tell this t-shirt is going to be in strong rotation this summer, and we’ll be buying another when she sizes out of it. I love the message behind the brand, and I can’t wait to see more from them! I’m more than happy to have Juliza wear it proudly.




Shop Her Look


Baby Juliza loves to play dress up. She asks to put on shoes pretty much the moment she wakes up in the morning, and she’ll only take them off to nurse or get up on the sofa or bed. When she wants to wear a tutu, she asks to put on her “princess.” I would say I don’t know where she gets it, but that would be a bold-faced lie. As anti-social as she tends to be, she lights up when she dresses up. So a few weeks ago, I decided to create an Instagram account to document her outfits and her #toddlerlife antics.

I’ve decided I’ll start sharing her outfits here too — or at least some (most?) of them. You can follow her on Instagram to see the rest, or search for the #babyjuliza hashtag. Anyway, fair warning? These blog posts will likely be photo heavy, because there are too many good ones not to share. Want to see what I mean? Start scrolling 🙂






Cute, right? There are many more where those came from. But first, the details:

She’s wearing: Carter’s t-shirt | Harajuku Mini tutu leggings (similar & similar) | Jordan Flight SC3s | My necklace (similar) | Random sunglasses (similar Babiators) (aff)

I bought these leggings with the tutu attached from the Harajuku Kids line for Target on clearance when Juliza was probably 8 or 9 months old. Yes. I’m that mom who will buy cute stuff in much larger sizes in anticipation of the day my child will eventually wear them. Especially if they’re on clearance. I paired it with a cute white top that I borrowed from a two-piece outfit and her black Jordans.






The sunglasses were found in our car. I have no idea how they got there, but she loves them. And the necklace was a last-minute addition. It’s my favorite, and I wear it all the time. The other day, she begged me to put it on her, and it was so cute that I decided she could wear it more often.





Since the weather has been nice, we’ve been going outside almost every afternoon. It took being outside for approximately 30 seconds before she started running around and just having fun being Juju. We blew bubbles and went for a walk and just enjoyed the weather. All the while with her looking like a mini rock star and loving it. SMH. Where did I get this child and what am I going to do with her?




So what do you say, fair readers? Would you like to see more of JuJu and her kid style? If you say yes, she has a heart for you — sort of…


Shop her look, or at least similar items: