I’m kicking off my series of badass female profiles “Swaggerette To Know”, inspiring women by seeing themselves contributing to the world in a wide-range of occupations and creativity.
I am a huge fan of this beautiful and funny lover of fashion by the social media handle KarenBritChick. She’s an Influencer, Model, Writer and Fashion expert and as her name implies, she’s a brit and she’s living in one of the most eclectic and stylish cities in the world, New York City. If you haven’t seen her IG or watched her YouTube channel I am thrilled to turn you onto her.
The late great fashion photo journalist Bill Cunningham was famous for his photographs of celebrities (especially chronicling the style of the late first lady Jackie O) and everyday people with style on the streets of NYC. Karen is continuing the tradition, interviewing an inclusive array of stylish New Yorkers of every shape, age and ethnicity both male and female in a series called “What Everyone Is Wearing In NY”.
I grew up in NY and have been living in LA for a very long time. I love, love both coasts but I’ve been homesick for the stylish crowded streets and the energy of my hometown. This series gives me the chance to get my slice of the apple and indulge my love of fashion.
Take a look at her latest YT episode back on the streets as NY emerges from their lockdown. Karen’s channel takes us shopping for vintage finds, designer pieces and the best of each season’s new pieces. Enjoy!
You can find Karen on IG @karenbritchick
I saw a little girl on the news crying at one of the protests, asking why everyone hates her, it tore my heart in two. I still tear up remembering a childhood feeling her pain for so many years unable to understand why.
I’ll be honest, I’ve had quite a bit of hate thrown at me by the white AND the black community growing up. As I have done my inner work to heal, the best wisdom imparted to me was from Amankeda Triplejewel, an urban medicine woman/Shaman and my spiritual teacher. Amankeda once asked me, “who ARE you”? My first response was “I’m creative, a friend, a filmmaker…” blah, blah, blah.
Amankeda explained to me we aren’t the roles that society has placed upon us or that we have chosen or the “sexism, racism, fill the blank ‘isms’. We are expressions of an energy way beyond the human experience, within us is the potential to rise above any limitations man has created – we’ve seen it all thru history and watching history being rewritten right now.
My parents instilled the need for self confidence in a world where I would be looked on by some as nothing – Shirley Riley Davis, First Black female to win a Clio Award (she won three)
Anyone who has ever met me knows how much I admired, love and adored my mom. I unfortunately lost her eight years ago but her influence and determination stays with me always. She accomplished so much in the 60’s at a time with odds completely against her. She passed down the same values my grandparents gave her. I was never told I couldn’t pursue my dreams, they were as my Godfather Pat puts it “the family business”.
We are not our environment, the roles we live with, our age, our weight or the color of our skin. As the Black Live Matters movement grows and more people are truly understanding the scope of how we live as blacks in America, I am encouraging black women and ALL women to understand and embrace our worth.
It’s not enough to just survive something, that’s not what life is about you have to thrive. – Megan Markle (speaking about her experience living with the royal family).
“When I walk into a room, I bring my African Heritage, Womanist, Same Gender Lovingness and Veteran status. I represent ALL of these communities and I refuse to sacrifice any aspect of my personhood to make someone else comfortable with prejudice ideologies.” – Senator Pat Spearman, Nevada
Growing up during the unrest of ’68, living here in LA during the riots of ’92 and now living in the change of 2020, I am sincerely hopeful that change is finally happening and becoming the new world for good.
Celebrity makeup artists Lora Arellano and Dana Bomar are the founders of the hugely successful and inclusive brand Melt Cosmetics. I discovered these gorgeous Swaggerettes when their documentary series “Lipstick Empire” launched on the Stage 13 platform in 2017. I was honored to meet the besties who have conquered an extremely competitive industry with humor and fierce creativity. The series was an enormous success because it represented 100% girl power and a mix of smart business with fearlessness.
I’m featuring them on CurvySwagger because it’s important for women to be reminded how powerful we are as individuals but even more when we empower and motivate one another.
Lora and Dana’s makeup design and colorful palettes continue to be vivid and bold, something for everybody no matter the age, ethnicity, or background.
We talked about starting our business over lunch. We were obsessed with matte lipsticks. We wanted to create matte lipsticks with crazy colors. They didn’t exist in the market so we decided to make them. The next day she (Dana) came to me with the startup costs, how to get a license…we said let’s just do this. We used no loans, no investors, just the money we had… – Lora Arellano and Dana Bomar
Lora’s channel has dozens of wildly creative and gorgeous tutorials.
Dana’s channel has tutorials and behind the scenes videos.
Remember to Honor Yourself!
In a new interview with People Magazine, Valerie Bertinelli speaks about the pain of growing up in front of the cameras amid criticism and pressure. Now, at 60 she’s found self love and acceptance as an empowered woman.
Click onto the link to read the full MSN coverage.
The “One Day at a Time” actress reveals when her issues with food started, saying, according to “Today”: “The very first time I became really aware of my body, I remember my fifth-grade teacher patted me on the belly and said, ‘You might want to keep an eye on that.
Bertinelli insists she no longer puts as much pressure on herself: “I don’t weigh myself as much anymore. I’ll put on some jeans once in a while to see how they feel. Why do I have to know the number I am?”
– People Interview excerpts
I remember when the 2009 cover came out I wished so badly I could wear a bikini. I had put on so much weight under some serious depression, my bikini days way behind me. Over a decade later I’m accepting of the body I have and proud of the woman I’ve become
While I know this happens to men and women, the pressure on women is a lot tougher starting when we’re little girls. Adults need to become conscious of the pressures and body shaming we put on little girls who grow up seeing themselves as flawed instead of unique and beautiful.
I hope celebrities of all sizes keep sharing their stories so women everywhere will never feel alone.
THIS SH*T IS SCARY, DON’T UNDERESTIMATE HOW THIS IS MAKING YOU FEEL! These are very intense and unbelievable times that we’ve never experience in our lifetime. It’s a challenge to know how to feel or what to do or how to cope. Here are some ways we can uplift our spirits regardless of being stuck inside.
RESPECT YOUR EMOTION AND FEEL WHAT YOU FEEL
Being in the midst of quarantine is an enormous unknown for us. There are no “shoulds” in quarantine except to stay home. Parents are looking for ways to keep their children feeling safe, mates trying to comfort one another and not kill each other, singles doing all they can to not feel so alone and children in varying degrees of bewilderment.
Please be good to yourself. Sleep in without guilt, wear your silliest pajamas. Reach out to your friends and family on the phone and my personal favorite – see one another on Zoom. Talk about more than just the pandemic, make one another laugh. If you need to cry, cry. If you feel angry and lost don’t beat yourself up. There are people around the globe, I repeat AROUND THE GLOBE feeling the same things, there is no shame in it.
“WHEN IN HELL, DON’T STOP TO TAKE PICTURES” This is one of my favorite quotes from Clinical Hypnotherapist Juanita Beth Morgan. This pandemic is scary, really scary but we have to keep moving forward and stay in the present as much as possible. I’m a freelancer in entertainment so this way of life I’ve done a lot (minus the devastating virus) and the only way to find your calm is to know we are getting through this. Try not to hold on to how hard the day was or if tomorrow will get worse, every day brings with it a new start. Trust me, this isn’t sunshine I’m blowing up your butt – it works.
“TAKE THINGS AN HOUR AT A TIME, A STEP AT A TIME” Amankeda Triplejewel, Urban Medicine Woman is a shaman who teaches her students to find empowerment by not overwhelming themselves. Do what you can, as you can and be realistic. There is only so much that can be done under the circumstances. Remember, we’ve never experienced this before in our lifetime.
BE INFORMED NOT FREAKED OUT, MINIMIZE THE NEWS.
Monitor the things you’re watching and listening to on a daily basis. Listening to crisis, death, misfortune and financial chaos is not helping you. Yes, there is a lot to think about, to worry about for sure, but soaking in that energy will keep inspiring sleepless nights and a sad heart.
BE FLEXIBE WITH YOUR DAY BUT SCHEDULE YOUR SHUT DOWN
This is so important when you’re dealing with any type of isolation. Create a schedule for yourself and your family to shut it down. If you’re working remotely it’s necessary for your peace of mind to shut things down and move away from the laptop/desktop. Any of us who have home based businesses will tell you it gets really easy to keep working and lose time. We’re already stressed, pushing yourself AND being stuck inside is a very bad recipe.
Whether you live in a house or a studio apartment, put things away and sit somewhere else and begin your evening. If you’re a night owl like me, force yourself off the sofa and at least get in the bed before you start nodding off like a big kid. It will keep you from waking yourself up when you get in the bed to sleep.
CHANGE YOUR PERSPECTIVE, BE MORE LIKE A CAT
Celebrity Life Coach, Andrea Quinn instructs students during her weekend workshops to change seating during each break. It gives everyone a fresh and new perspective to move around and this is especially true when your scenery isn’t changing. Even in one room you can sit and work in different areas and get things done.
I’ve been observing my kitties and how they navigate my apartment. They run like maniacs, have a snack, lay in the sun, play, bother me while I’m working and take a nap. By the end of day, they’ve lived in every area of my space and they’re not under quarantine they’re just living.
FIND YOUR HUMOR, PASS IT ALONG, OR CREATE SOME.
This is another way of saying make some lemonade with the lemons. My friends have been sending me the funniest memes and videos I’ve ever seen and I happily pass along the same to them. That moment when we can laugh in the midst of fear and sadness is very empowering. Laughter is healing and it’s infectious and nothing is stopping you from creating your own. Creativity is the great healer and it makes you feel good when you can heal someone else with it.
Rent funny movies and talk to the funny people in your life – a lot. Keep your spirits up however you can.
YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT FOMO ANYMORE – NOBODY IS DOING ANYTHING.
Use social media to reach out to your friends you always see and the ones you keep saying you’ll get together with and never do. Now is the time to post everything and anything that can help people, support non-profits, inspire hope and give a giggle.
PLAY LIKE A KID
Build a fort in the living room, play a board game, do a DIY project. There are companies that have free printable pages for coloring. Crayola.com has coloring pages for your kids and Supercoloring.com has meditation Mandalas for the grownups.
BELIEVE IN SOMETHING BIGGER THAN ALL OF THIS, WHATEVER THAT MAY BE FOR YOU.
Meditate, meditate, meditate and/or pray. Calm your heart by slowing down your breath, calm your mind by allowing yourself to see beyond the fears of the day. Reverend Dr. Michael Beckwith of the Agape International Spiritual Center talks about taking a “Mind-Fast” from the worry and stress and suspending your fears as much as you can.
Try this: Put a 17 second timer on your phone or watch, close your eyes take a deep breath and think about the happiest thing you can and keep doing it until the alarm goes off. Keep increasing the time and see how long you can get to in one sitting.
Self-care, committing to being there for our loved ones and ourselves is what we can do right now. One step at a time.
(click below to see the full post including two more cute looks)