Drugstore Vs. Department Store Makeup

The past couple of days of my life have been on more Red Bulls than snow on the ground. I don’t know what the hell is going on but things are moving at a rapidly fast pace, so much that I now find myself up at 2 in the morning when I have a client scheduled this afternoon (nice). Not the time for an insomnia attack. One week life is moving turtle-slow, the next you’re wishing things slow down!

 

For those of you thinking this post was going to be just about makeup, there are great finds in the drugstores but there is nothing like department store makeup. The end, now move along honey. Those of you that know me by now, know that it isn’t just about the makeup here. There’s always more to it. Lets be honest with one another: If we could afford only department store makeup, would we ever consider drugstore lines? Or for my “Well, there’s good finds in the drugstores” ladies, who would you marry? Say for instance, Mac and Target (makeup not the entire store) propose to you. You’d take that Mac ring and give the forehead kiss to Target. Sorry, but not sorry!

I attended a skincare training on Tuesday, and guess where the instructor happened to be from? Minnesota! Of all the states, cities, and metropolitan areas a skincare instructor could come from they had to pull her from Minnesota right? Just my luck! (For you newbies, Minnesota is where my “heart throb” is.) I’ve been tight-lipped on spilling the tea about “Minnesota” after the whole Vegas ordeal because as any girl would be, I was kind of heartbroken walking around like life was peachy. Inside, it was utter torture. “Minnesota” and I met, kissed in Vegas and the rest was history! So automatically I felt a kindred vibe to this instructor (not to mention her personality was so welcoming- it must be a Mid-West thing!) and felt inclined to be forthcoming about my Minnesotan Irish sweetheart.

As our instructor came around testing products on our hands, I just beckoned out all the polite questions I could about Minnesota, never really having been there. I was like a giddy kid. “Is it really, really cold? How do you guys get around? How’s the plowing over there?” I’m just all questions because I need to know! I eventually want to visit! Then she asks the question, “Do you know anyone in Minnesota?” and like word-vomit, I’m spilling out the word “boyfriend” like a love-sick teen (OMG). To make matters worse, she announces to the whole entire training room about how she and I were talking about my boyfriend in Minnesota…blah, blah, blah. Instantly, I was over-the-top embarrassed. If I didn’t have so much melanin in my skin I would’ve turned bright red at that very moment. “Oh my God,” I thought to myself. I just put my foot entirely in my mouth. I could feel the room instantly getting hotter and my temperature rise at the thought of “boyfriend” echoing around the room. “What the fu*k did I just say?” I felt my boss behind me, burning eyes into the back of my head saying, “B*tch that is not your “boyfriend“. I spent the entire next day freaking out. One thing I dislike is my character on the line. Am I optimistic or delusional? I start questioning every choice I’d ever made that morning. I’m not a habitual liar, especially not about any damn man. Ask me why I’m late, the answer is always traffic even when it was indeed my makeup routine. But other than that, I try to keep a pretty clean mouth.

So there I am, walking around devastated thinking my boss will out me or question my trustworthiness because I spewed out the damn word “boyfriend”. It was 9 am in the morning, way too early for my liking. Now that I look back, yes there are a ton of other things I could’ve named him but definitely not boyfriend. For one thing, I’m pretty sure I’m passed the boyfriend age. At some point in a girl’s life, the term “boyfriend” is null and void. If he isn’t your man by now, have several seats darling. I had to do something. I racked my brain trying to figure out how the hell to pull myself out of this, so the best scenario was to actually just talk to him about it. The truth is Minnesota and I are indeed in a really good space. After sending him a message via Facebook with three simple words, asking for his number, almost immediately he replied back to me. I asked my two-year old cousin if I should text him. In the most innocent voice she responded, “Uh-huh.” I couldn’t resist. At two-years old she is definitely too pure to steer me wrong.

Once we left Vegas, things (I) got crazy, and we took a break. A much appreciated break I can look back and say to not only him but myself, “I made a mistake.” Like the gentleman he is, he welcomed me back with long-distance open arms. I’ve dated, hit on guys, and extended myself to other possibilities but he is my virtual ‘sigh of relief’. This is a man I can express my business plans to and have him give me crucial feedback, send all my naked ‘selfies’ and receive rather intimate ones in return, or I can call and vent to about anything and receive a level-headed response. Yes, I immaturely threw out the word “boyfriend”, but he is not far from it either. I’ve dated guys after him that weren’t worthy of even knowing my panty size, so I began to withhold more and more of myself to undeserving pieces of meat (literally). I don’t need a man looking at me expecting sex. That’s another ship that has sailed. When a man flies you out to Vegas for your very first date and single-handedly sweeps you off of your feet, it’s going to take a lot of persuasion to get to know me on a physical level.

Minnesota is not my boyfriend, but he is definitely department store makeup. He gets me, he has my color and is worth the investment. I came across an article that talked about not being emotionally available for a relationship, and I honestly feel that is very much-so me. I think I want a relationship until I actually get into one, and I’m draining myself entirely into it. Not only am I not emotionally available but partially physically as well. I don’t want “Friends With Benefits”, and I don’t want to jump into another situation where I’m giving so much to my personal life that I’m losing and sacrificing my professional one. He and I talked for an hour about what we want and he honestly admitted he jumped into a situation with me, yet ironically I couldn’t admit to him that I did the same thing. I broke up with an ex in August and was seeing Minnesota by October. Did I really give myself the time to heal? Or did I rush into something not wanting to be alone? We jumped into something and I know I fell, but I’ve never thrown around the “L” word to him (Bye ship!). He is not my boyfriend, but he, I still believe to this day is my soul mate. Until I meet someone else to prove me wrong, I will continue to wait and focus my energy on my passion. He upped the ante of what a gentleman should embody and the level of support you should receive from said “boyfriends”. You never know, sometimes life just blesses you with an “Ante Upper”, and Minnesota could be just that. Once you find the right shade of department store makeup, drugstore foundation just doesn’t feel the same. I simply refuse to sleep with anymore drugstore makeup, so I’ll continue holding out for that department store quality.

 

Say “No!” to drugstore boyfriends. Save your “cookies” for department store ones.

 

Fashionably Yours,

 

Tamara

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Lippie Mr. Crocs

Pacing back and forth on the sales floor, I had to rationally talk myself down from going off and giving this gentleman (or what gentle part was left of him) a piece of my mind through text. This guy mastered the cruelest ways of getting underneath my skin. His antics made me want to grind my teeth and tell him every part of the asshole he was, but that’s absolutely what he wanted. A catty, feisty woman to go toe-to-toe with him and I honestly couldn’t bring myself to giving him that bit of satisfaction…

I met “WBD” while I was still in my fashion studies at college. My life was complete and utter chaos, from midterms to weekly assignments in addition to maintaining a position as a Fur Consultant in the city. With so much going on around me, I just wanted an aspect of stability. The hustle and bustle daily seemed so overwhelming, I needed an outlet of relaxation and companionship. WBD seemed to be a source for both. Back then, I never met someone of his caliber. To be honest, I thought he was “amazing shit”. All of the other men I came across were either grunge, stoner hipsters, immature PC geeks or my college professors. Once I accepted the fact that my college professors were out of the question (and trust me that was a big pill to swallow), WBD seemed like the perfect suitor I could hang out with once school and work gave me an opportunity to breathe.

“WBD” was glitter and gold that glimmered from afar. Witty, conversational and most importantly, stable in his career. I met him as he was just hitting the thirties mark, and his resume was quite impressive. Not originally a city native, “WBD” was a rather well-rounded (literally and figuratively speaking) individual. A Temple University graduate, solid career in the medical profession, part-time worker at a local William-Sonoma and other unmentionable ways of receiving a handsomely full income. “WBD” was everything I was used to and some of what I actually wasn’t. He possessed mystery, strength and most of all, security. I was entranced by this white man’s accolades and ability to relate to who I was. He put on his corporate “white face” when necessary, but around me in his comfort I experienced an entirely different person. He was the first educated white man that had more street-smarts and lingo than I’ve ever encountered. Kind of like Eminem in “8 Mile” without the 8 miles…

He was so unique in his personality, I was in awe. I wanted to know everything there was about him like the first black girl he ever dated and what was his fascination with hip-hop and the urban culture. The more I talked to him or he avoided my questions with silence, I came to understand this was just who he was. His mentality was nothing like any white guy I ever encountered, and if I may be frank his street smarts were far more impressive than any black guy I’ve ever come across at the time. He had the smarts and skills of a Soprano, but at the drop of a hat he’d spend an evening watching the Travel channel which would always get me to raise a brow. He was an all around mental, heartthrob to me. I quickly learned that these are the men I’m attracted to! The ones I can bring to a corporate dinner but in the same breath could handle himself in a rough neighborhood or setting. There wasn’t much that intimidated WBD, however he was very sophisticated and didn’t take unnecessary risks. I secretly idolized him.

Other things I noted about him was in addition to his snappy personality was the fact that he was a bit of a hoarder. Not a disgusting one, just one that owned a bit of everything. From the Bob Marley painting hanging in the living room to the bags and bags of William Sonoma items that just sat in front of the big screen never even opened. He had bottles of unopened liquor in every room from his travels and collection. WBD was much of a collector of things that interested him. He lived in a small two bedroom duplex that was full of random things and a ton of unmentionables everywhere. WBD didn’t deprive himself of anything he wanted. He paid for everything with cash and made his man cave quite to his liking. The only thing I realized he didn’t own was a comb. Every once in a while when I’d stop over to hang out, I’d ask to style his hair. With much resist, he’d eventually let me but he didn’t ever have a comb for me to use. He didn’t believe in combing his hair and convinced me that’s why black people’s hair wouldn’t grow because we’re always messing with it. As offensive as it sounds, he actually has a point.

His manes were big and curly but semi well-kept along with his big red beard. WBD would only let his barber cut his hair and wouldn’t touch it much until he saw his barber again. WBD was the first manly man to admit to me that he actually gets his eyebrows trimmed by his barber which explained their immaculate shape. Unlike his eyebrows, WBD himself was in terrible shape. His belly was at least 20 months in, I don’t think he’s remembered the last time he actually saw anything past it (I called him the white Rick Ross, before Ross lost weight that is). For someone so big, you’d think he would be humble. There wasn’t a humble bone in his body. He was rude, arrogant and argued like my Jamaican mother. It was such a turn off. I tried to tell myself I understood him because I understood my mother. That’s an even bigger load of crap to stomach. Just because I understood his attitude doesn’t mean I wanted to put up with it.

With almost a year of knowing one another, it was almost like I didn’t know him at all. He was moody, I never know which way the wind blew with his attitude and I didn’t want to keep investing but I still cared. So I gave things a try yet again. One evening WBD came to pick me up so we could hang out in hopes of giving our “friendship” a try. He came to get me in his work scrubs and Crocs, which is actually all I ever saw him in now that I think about it. As I followed him upstairs, I giggled to myself watching his Crocs lean to the side and cry for help under his weight. Such a big man with an even bigger ego.

He told me he had to shower and left me in the midst of all of his belongings. I did what any other curious young woman would do, I searched. I don’t know what I was looking for but I needed to find some kind of clues about this man and why he was so guarded with his emotions. I cared, practically loved this man that I’d never been intimate with (yes I fall mentally without the physical). By the time I got to his bedroom, my eyes wandered over his desk. I couldn’t help but notice a small ring near the keyboard, entirely too small for his sausage fingers. Above the desk was a compartment on the overhead that needed a key to open. Just my luck, it was actually unlocked. I checked to make sure the shower was still at its peak. Indeed it was and like a little Inspector Gadget, I slowly opened the compartment door sure to not make a peep. Once opened, there were rolls of money falling out at me. My mouth dropped. I was used to seeing money, but didn’t this guy believe in a bank? Of all the men I knew I thought he’d be one of those with multiple accounts floating around in cyber space. I threw the money back in the same way it had fallen out. I may be many things, but I’m not a thief. There was no joy for me taking one of those rolls when I knew there’s a bigger picture (probably floating in cyber space) somewhere. More importantly, I actually liked him for him. Not for his hidden money stashes. I wanted him, and I wanted him to take me seriously.

There were more things I noticed that night. Like his sleep oxygen mask, apparently he was bigger than I thought. We watched television in the living room after he finally came out of the shower. I sat in my comfortable manner as I always do. His money really and truly didn’t phase me, if anything it just added more mystery to who the hell he was. A show happened to be on about fixing businesses in economic danger and the host was going over profit and loss numbers in a particular scenario. I blurted out a figure of what I thought the profit/loss margin was, showing off my Retail Math course skills (a class I didn’t particularly like, but another hot professor made it tolerable). Immediately, WBD corrected me. Not only were my numbers way off, his figures were on the nose! My insides screamed, “Marry me!” But my outsides sighed in exasperation because I didn’t know what else to do.

At this point we were both fidgety and uncomfortable, so he suggested we go into his bedroom to finish watching television. That was what I loved the most, laying in his arms and rubbing on his ginormous belly. It was like Santa came early. I felt peaceful and comfortable and finally had the courage to ask while kissing his face off. “When will you take me seriously?” My temper was serious but delicate. “Take me seriously WBD.” He just looked at me but never answered. At that point he started to undress when I looked at him with an even more quizzical face. What the hell is he doing? This is not an answer to my question. I was no longer a gullible young lady you could side track with sexual tension. I needed an answer. I needed to know when he would take me seriously. He never answered and he took me home that night without getting one. He damn sure didn’t get anything either.

I moved on knowing what I knew about him and left it at that. My boyfriend at the time and I were going through a bad argument, and I searched Facebook for any clues on WBD. He’d texted me a few times in between but because I was seeing someone I never really responded. While snooping on Facebook, I’d come to discover two things: One I already knew and the other a complete shock to me. The first was that indeed a black girl did break his heart. I happened to see some evidence of who she was and that she actually broke it off with him for good. I’m guessing she took his heart with her because he was never fully able to heal after his apparent “college sweetheart”. The second thing I learned shocked me to my core. WBD had Multiple Sclerosis for years and never told me. I felt betrayed like I was left out of the group text messages. Why didn’t he think he should tell me? I was so honest with him with everything other than my affection, why couldn’t he do the same with me?

On a temporary break from a relationship with my boyfriend at the time, this was the perfect time to heal myself of WBD. I reached out to him and with semi-open arms, he accepted and invited me over. Surprisingly this time, the apartment was a bit cleaner and so was the haziness of my mind. We sat beside one another on the couch watching television as we always did. In front of me laid new items to his collection. A foot massager barely used and earthy looking beaded bracelets on his mini “work” table. I looked down at the massager and asked him when did he get that? He looked down with this devilish grin, replying “Oh this?” while using his foot to move it from in front of me to in front of him. I thought to myself, “This asshole has got to be kidding me.” What drove me crazy the most was the way he perceived me as one of his usual conquests that weren’t used to the joys of life. Times had changed and I was much more aware than when he just met me. I rolled my eyes to the beads and asked when and where did he get the bracelets. They were actually kind of cool. He told me he purchased them offline. I tested the waters, “Can I have one? You’re not going to wear all three are you?” I promised I used the most innocent, sultry voice. More than I ever had to use on my current off/on again boyfriend who bought me anything I asked, as long as I asked.

“I just bought them,” he responded. I knew at that very moment, he’d never be the man for me. He was big, mean, cheap, and from what I saw had a very little penis. Why should I bother? Eventually I headed out drier than when I arrived (I’m sure he could say the same for himself), and thank God this time I drove myself over so I didn’t need him to do anything except watch me leave. I walked down his steps knowing I’d never be back again. He didn’t deserve me or any woman for that matter. Maybe a blow-up doll, nothing more.  We squabbled a few times back and forth via text after that. Let’s face it: I’m cold, I’m not heartless. This was a man I truly cared about but he was a consistent dick. I prided myself of being the bigger person, letting him know how loyal I actually was to him, the times I’d find his money all over the house and never took a cent. His response was, “How do I know that?” That was the first time he actually ever broke my heart. Anything he ever said to me before of after was a scrape. That statement was a punch in the gut.

I soon came to learn that money or any other money in the house was to pay for prostitutes and sexual favors. I was beyond done in disgust. Here I am genuinely a woman that cares about you, and you’re telling me you pay for pleasure? To this day, I can never comprehend or wrap my mind around that (he could’ve been lying to soothe my soul but its a plausible scenario). The psychologist in me gathers he’d rather pay than to be emotionally involved given his sickness. After all once MS finally came up in conversation, he was kind enough to let me know his sickness can kick in at any moment and he wouldn’t be able to move on his own. His mouth was saying one thing, but all I saw was him pushing me away. Our arguments became so bad, I don’t even know if I can allow myself to be empathetic or sympathetic anymore. Periodically I would check in just to make sure he was okay, but his snarky, malicious comments makes me not even want to give a damn and I’m done with checking in. However, I’m too good of a person to wish suffering on anyone, so I’ll wish him the best from afar.

 

Dear Little Penis, Lippie, and Miserable Mr. WBD,

 

Crocs are not your friend.

 

With Love,

 

Tamara.

 

 

Black, White & Classic Ralph Lauren

 

The dating pool on the east coast is like a cesspool. I honestly don’t know why I bother at times. I’m sure I gain more satisfaction out of doing my damn laundry. But if trying my luck at dating leads to nothing else, it’s for sheer entertainment…

I stumbled across an executive chef in the city seventeen years my senior. Instantly, of course I’m swooning (heart emoji eyes and all). An older, white chef that can make five-star meals while I lie in bed, uh yes please? Too good to be true right? Absolutely! I’m starting to see my ‘Disney, fairytale’ trends here. Like men, I’m impulsive with my fantasies. I find that I have yet to fall for the person someone truly is, I fall for my optimism of who they could be.

So “Executive Chef” had a number of red flags I chose to overlook. The number one was kids. Cardinal rule number one: I never date a man with kids for more than one reason. In his case, these reasons were cheerleading games and weekend babysitting duty. With him having two impressionable young girls, I know how much of a handful this could become. I’d never want a situation to arise when my Beau had to choose between time with me and time with his kids, because I am selfish enough to expect him to choose me. Mr. Chef sees his kids two times a week, and they live in another city with the ‘crazy’ ex-wife the other five (the woman’s always crazy, never the man according to them). This may work… I figured why not give it a try? We’re only having conversation at the moment.

Wrong, completely and utterly wrong. I soon learned the kids were the least of my problems. The more we talked, the more I realized how much of a hardcore freak he was. Granted, he’s obviously a veteran in the sexual endeavors department, but some things made me question his heterosexual preference. Apparently, watching transsexual porn was his thing. He didn’t think he was gay, but I didn’t think this was one hundred percent straight either (red flag number 2).

Despite the red flags and kiddie tote baggage, we agreed to meet for drinks. Throughout our text exchanges, flag number three was signaling me down like a trooper on the express way. (One would think at 45 he wasn’t much for texting….he was King of New Age Communication). This man made me hot all the damn time! I don’t mind being someone’s vixen, but I do mind not being seen as anything more. Call me a feminist, but I have other things to do than spend my time being hot and bothered in the middle of the work day. Our conversations always led back to sex, or my body, or how hot I was. Yes, nice. I get it. But let’s talk about something else, please.

So I’d divert the conversations back to his craft; cooking. He was all mouth in telling me of new concoctions he’d created in the kitchen. Thank goodness. Like a bad cycle, I’m swooning and at my peak for different reasons. Funny how much comfort we looked for in one another. He was in it for my body, I was in it for his food. I didn’t care much about him or his kids, just tell me about your plans to open your second restaurant. Tell me about the Asian chicken salad you’re creating for a new grab and go item at work. Talk food to me sir. As far as I was concerned, the only common ground I had with his daughters was our love of the Food channel. That was all I needed.

Nevertheless, our initial date was just the way I like it; completely and utterly unconventional and one he’ll never forget. We made plans for a local, overpriced bar. I sat down ready to order and waiting for him to arrive but I couldn’t find my I.D! As much of a compliment this was to still get carded, it was not the time to be card-less for the first date. I did my usual ‘boob feel’ check. As my date walks up behind me, there I am in the midst of groping my breasts and going back and forth between my Burberry work bag. Chef smirks watching the exchange between the bartender and I.

“You forgot your I.D didn’t you?” He sees the discomfort in my sultry face. (Never remove the sultry look from your face, especially when you’re caught in the act of feeling on your breasts in a public.) “Let’s go somewhere else,” Chef suggests. He’s definetly the fatherly type. There was calmness and protection in his voice. It was the voice that could lead you astray if you didn’t stand firmly on ground. He wasn’t the best looker I ever came across (I’d say about a 6). But his persionality, 6’2 height, trendy comb-over hairstyle and Warby Parker glasses made up for the lack of youthful face. I drove us over to bar number 2 which was only a minute away with my gas light reminding me to stop and get some soon. Even if I was 30 miles to empty, my car does me the favor of being just as paranoid as I am. (I guess that was his red flag number 2. He already has two daughters, I don’t think he was in the market for another).

In the second bar, I’m a regular. I knew the female bartender and felt at home like I had a wingman on my date. I took my blazer off, and watched him take off his jacket. The handsome-ness peaked through a little more. His dark-washed jeans with a classic Ralph Lauren sweater echoed “old man” swagger. Sharp old man. Just my type. The hair, the glasses and the Omega watch he pulled out of his stash were my kind of old-man infatuations. All he needed was a pipe sticking out of the side of his mouth and I would’ve been Julia Roberts in “Pretty Woman” (after Rodeo Drive of course).

I won’t give away too much. A girl has to keep some things for her memory box. However, we did have a great time. Great dinner and great laughs. He was gentleman enough to pump my gas for me in the frigid cold which was nice because I might’ve chanced the ride home on E. Ultimately, I just had to follow the red flags and throw in the towel after that. Here, this old, newly bachelor was a horny teenaged boy all over again. I wanted him to respect me as he’d want a man to respect his daughters, and he just wouldn’t understand. Hopefully, he does before one of his girls’ brings home a man 17 years their senior. That’s when he’ll remember me because karma likes to work that way. If Karma’s a woman as I suspect, she’ll hit his ass with an old hornball coming to his door wanting to date his daughter wearing a classic Ralph Lauren sweater and dark-washed denim jeans. Just the way I like them, minus the transsexual porn-loving horn ball part. That’s just way too much kink for me.

Can’t teach an old dog new tricks dolls. Don’t waste your time trying.

Blondes Don’t Have The Most Fun

They say blondes have more fun. I can assure you, that’s hardly the truth. I possess an inner blonde. She is cold, stiff and has the personality of a foot. I’m pretty sure she hasn’t had any form of sex since college midterms. On a positive note my inner blonde is professionally exceptional ( I like to call her ‘Amy’), and profoundly book smart. Amy is my go-to voice of reason for all work assignments, presentations and career-related ventures. She is a force to be reckoned with. Amy hardly ever takes no for an answer, and would most certainly claw her way to the top (within moral reason of course).

One might say, “How can you be so sure she’s a blonde?” Simple. ‘Amy’ is very dippy with little to no street smarts whatsoever. She has no charisma, no sympathy and even less of a social life. But goodness has she helped me land all of my corporate jobs and internships. I bring Amy along when most appropriate: Fashion Week, professional networking, and client-related trainings. She can make a hell of a resume and thoroughly compose a business proposal, but she can’t land a date to save her life. I know this because she is the part of me that longs most for the power couple dynamic. Unfortunately, I’m sure she intimidates the hell out of men.

My fiery, engine-red head vixen gets all of the dates. She has the sass, the girl power and the social life. ‘Keesha’ gets hit on and rejects suitors left and right. She pops her gum, bites her lip, is full of confidence and isn’t afraid to show off her curves. Keesha is the definition of a non-blonde that has the most fun. She lights up and takes over a room. She’s witty, sensual, street-smart and very vocal. She’s the only girl invited to the “BOYS ONLY” events. Keesha is my inner red-head. An urban goddess that doesn’t have time for child’s play.

Then there’s my brunette. She’s very soft much like her hair color, and the medium between both personalities. This side is the nurturing, understanding and a very sympathetic one. My brunette is vulnerable, cries at those pesky animal abuse commercials, and loves the fine arts. She’s super laid back, would eat pizza all day, and ‘Netflix and chill’ alone until she couldn’t anymore. My brown-haired personality loves to express her creative side. My inner brunette is me, just plain old, sweet Tamara.

For years, I thought I was bipolar or had multiple personality disorder. Now I’ve realized that’s not the case at all. I’ve simply had to learn how to be a chameleon and assimilate to different environments in order to survive. Honing more than one persona helps me to handle various situations on a daily basis. Sometimes my brunette needs my inner blonde to complete a project, or my inner red-head needs to come out when things are heating up and Amy just can’t get the job done.

I went back and forth about this post because it is such a vulnerable part of who I am. I am not only giving you me, I’m sharing all three layers of myself. After having a consultation with a client, the topic of suicide in the women’s African-American community came up. I decided I have to be transparent on the ways I cope with depression and making it through life on a daily basis. Suicide is never an answer. In many races including the African- American culture, women are taught to be strong and hide their weaknesses. I found an outlet, and I hope this helps women to find positive ways to deal with self-acceptance. Life can be tough, but I always remind myself that another day in the race is better than not being in the race at all.

Find your inner blonde, red, blue and pink goddesses. Do what you need to keep yourself in the race darling. Don’t give up.

Xoxo,

Tamara💏

Gender Bending Fashion Statements

You’d be surprised to know that I used to be very much of a budding, young tomb-boy in my earlier years. Yes, me. Girly, pinup, curvaceously sensual, me. As much of an oxymoron as it may sound, I was always drawn to the softness of a woman that exudes even through men’s garments. In middle school I was forced to wear uniforms. I found much comfort in sporting my form-fitting Dickie pants, light blue polo tennis shirts and Timberland suede boots. It allowed me to be “one of the boys” and grab on the imaginary crotch I never had.

By the time high school rolled around, being a little fem-boy was a hidden part of my DNA. When the discussions of Senior Prom arose, I felt compelled to create a black, classic cut tuxedo dress with plenty of structure and even more boobs to display . Blindly naïve, I made the first ‘Fashion Rule’ mistake in my History class: Never discuss your [unpatented] ideas with your peers. Of course someone loved my idea so much, they decided to make that dress for themselves (thank God I had a backup plan which is absolutely, always Fashion Rule Number two).

Yves Saint Laurent | Silk-cady tuxedo dress (classic!):

There’s an essence so captivating and impressive about meshing the men women worlds’ together; fashion is an awesome industry for having the ability to do that. A designer can seamlessly overlap the male and female’s outwardly appearances over one another. The viewers will have no choice but to either appreciate or misinterpret the beauty of mild “cross-dressing” couture. In reality, men dressing a tad like women was an idea I actually grew up with in my heritage. Being of Jamaican descent introduced me to the concept of  men dressing in skinny leg jeans, slimmer tops and topped with a masculine Clark shoe. Not until I attended college, did I understand the European influences of my background’s attire and music choices. Jamaica having belonged to the British prior to emancipation, assimilated a lot of the European customs to their culture. I thought we just really liked tight pants and the group Whaam! because they were good. Never did I realize it actually stemmed from the Jamaicans’ initial ties to the U.K cultures.

faderstyle:    THE HISTORY OF JAMAICA’S LOVE AFFAIR WITH CLARKS DESERT BOOTS:

Midway through college and taking a Visual Merchandising course, I fell in love with the Woody Allen film, Annie Hall. I mentioned to my professor how much I loved seeing women in ties and chinos and erogenous looks. His response was, “Oh, like the movie Annie Hall?”  My brows instantly went up. Annie Who? After class, I googled everything I could about the movie before even getting an opportunity to watch. Diane Keaton’s character was so gentle and quirky. The wardrobe director made an amazing call by putting her into more serious, gallant menswear pieces. The contrast was eccentric, but drew you in to her character. You couldn’t help but to glue your eyes onto her outfits in almost every single scene. Later I’d come to discover the movie is actually a really good watch (honestly one of those films I watch every time it airs), and received an A on my following project.

 

Fast forwarding to present day, I happened to stumble across a Louis Vuitton ad featuring the revolutionary, Jaden Smith in the Women’s SS ’16 collection on Instagram a few days ago. Darling, was that my tea for the morning! Sure this a trend that’s been going on since the days of the Egyptians, but every time it resurfaces I get so fashionably enticed. Not to mention all of the gender-bending looks from London’s runway shows this weekend. May we just take a moment to embrace men in cinched waist looks from the Matthew Miller collection? Bananas! I don’t know if I’d ever see a man in a skinny belt wrapped around his waist and consider him sexually attractive. However it does makes for an appetizing work of haute couture art, and great sex-crossing story telling on the runway.

Jaden Smith

Jaden Smith for Louis Vuitton SS ’16 Collection

 

Love Your Individuality. Embrace Your Style.

 

Fashionably Yours,

 

Tamara

 

Personal Vs. Professional Life

Do you remember the scene in the movie, The Devil Wears Prada when Anne Hathaway’s character says her relationship is on the rocks and her fashion colleague turns to her and says something along the lines of, “Honey, when your relationship is up in flames that means you’re getting a promotion.”

Well darling, let me be the first to tell you: That’s so damn true…

Whenever my personal life is in shambles, my professional career is blossoming like wild flowers. Or when my personal life is going too damn well, my work life is suffering. Its so nerve wrecking. Why can’t it all be smooth sailing and the balance scales of life be even on both sides at the same time? Would that make living way too easy? Life must be a beach, and I’m presuming our lives are the boats. If we’re experiencing nothing but clear skies and minimal waves, what will there be to keep us on our toes and sharp? As unfortunate as it is to endure, life would be kind of bland and monotonous without a bit of chaos somewhere.

When my ex and I officially broke up for the last and final time, a month later life blessed me with a new car. Talk about clearing dead weight for new and better things! It was unexpected but a total boost of confidence. I literally went into the dealership for service on my previous car, sauntered over to the sales department and walked out with a brand new car that evening. I had no idea this would happen. I didn’t carry any cash and I was wearing workout clothes from being in the gym prior. It was almost like the heavens and eternal skies opened up just for me! I felt amazing…

The romantic getaway in Vegas I planned just three months later, ended shortly after the trip. However, I did receive a promotion and raise with my current employer a few weeks following. That is totally my definition of winning when all is said and done. You can’t put a price on happiness, but success truly does feel wonderful. (Lets weigh the life scales in this scenario: Penis or pay raise? Penis or promotion?) God, I see the trend here!

Dear Penis, I’m investing in a chastity belt. Bye!

Fashionably Yours,

Tamara S.