All You Need To Know About Your Beauty Sleep

Losing sleep is normal as we try to meet up with the demands of the day and probably get a lot more done. As a career woman, mother and wife, the earliest time to bed for me on a busy day is midnight, to be up again before dawn. With this continued hustling and bustling, many of us have forgotten the feeling of being rested.
We have got just 24 hours in a day and with so much to be done, we want to make the most of it. Truthfully, this isn’t healthy at all. Sleeping is as vital to our body as eating. Sleep is restorative; thus a key part of a healthy lifestyle.
Adequate sleep ensures your ability to handle the day’s stress at work or at home. In reality, the quality of sleep you get directly affects your daily functioning. Sleep aids in the control of insulin and stress hormone Cortisol, thus giving the body the needed hormonal balance.
Good productivity, mental sharpness, emotional balance, creativity, rejuvenation, physical vitality, and even healthy weight maintenance are some of benefits derived from a good snooze. So you see, there’s so much to be enjoyed with just a little more sleep.
Contrary to popular belief, sleeping doesn’t mean the body or brain is shut off. Do you know that during sleep your body is working to support your brain function? While sleeping, the brain does biological repairs that keep your body at its best. Without regular sleep, you’re headed for a major mental or physical breakdown.
Lack of sleep may result in the following:

Fatigue, lethargy, and lack of motivation
Moodiness and irritability
Reduced creativity and problem-solving skills
Inability to cope with stress
Low libido and little interest in sex
Reduced immunity; frequent colds and infections
Concentration and memory problems
Weight gain
Impaired alertness, motor skills and increased risk of accidents and injuries
Difficulty making decisions
Increased risk of diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, stroke, arthritis, and several other health problems.

This may sound really outrageous but it is simple reality – to function at your best, at least seven hours of sleep per night is essential. Sleep requirements may vary slightly from person to person so you have to make an effort to enjoy quality snooze time to know the duration of hours that works for you.
Consciously indulge in a good night’s sleep, and then see your energy and efficiency increase. Sleep is essential for a long, healthy and productive life. You’ll not only perform more during the day but you’ll look a lot younger than when you were cutting down on your daily dose of beauty sleep…its called beauty sleep after all!
When next you are about to forfeit that restorative shut-eye for need to put in extra hours of work, STOP, have a rethink; don’t lose that sleep!

Top Natural Hair Care Secrets

Taking the Big Chop or doing a long term transitioning is definitely a bold step that takes a lot of courage.  A thousand and one reasons could have led to you embracing natural hair but guess what? You aren’t alone in this. Going natural is a current fashion trend or should I say trending movement…thumbs up to all the naturalistas in the house!
Although keeping your hair natural has its advantages (that’s a story for another day), being a naturalista can be real daunting but with patience and the right hair care, you can bring out the lustrous curls and beauty in your hair. And of course, make it the envy of all eyes.
I hope some of the following natural hair secrets I’m going to share will help in your natural hair journey:
Natural oils and ingredients like coconut oil, almond oil, olive oil, carrot oil, aloe vera, and shea butter are the best choices when buying hair products like hair shampoos, conditioners, moisturizers, curl enhancers, etc.
The lifestyle of a naturalista includes a healthy hair washing regimen at least twice every month.
Using water and glycerine helps in retaining quality hair moisture by preventing tangles and keeping your hair soft always.       
Love to use curling irons? You’ve got to take it slow with the heat! Curling irons, hair straighteners, blow dryers, hot iron combs will damage your hair. Thanks to the high temperature of these heat appliances, frequent use causes brittleness in hair resulting in hair breakage. You should reduce the number of times you use them, and if you have to, always apply heat protection shampoos and moisturizers.
As a naturalista, apple cider vinegar should never be missing in your closet. ACV helps in maintaining the right pH balance in your hair. ACV also rids your hair of itchy scalp and dandruff causing bacteria. 
Detoxifying your scalp helps remove toxins from your hair roots. This will also disengage dead skin from your pores. Scalp detox should be a part of your hair care therapy (watch out for DIY tips on making your own scalp detox masks).
You want to see your hair radiant and lustrous? A well balanced diet not only nourishes your body but does some wonders for your hair too. Diets rich in protein, whole grains, dairy products, vegetables and fruits will help your hair immensely; indulge in them!
Already making some progress on your natural hair journey but tired of having same look? Use wigs from time to time to change your look. They will also keep your hair protected and moisturized.
There’s so much more coming your way on how to enjoy a successful natural hair journey…stay connected to this space!

MakeUp How To’s: The Cat Eye or Winged Eyeliner

The winged or cat eyeliner has been in existence since the 50’s. It is very flattering for most eye shapes and requires practice for you to get it right. You can use a color pencil, gel or liquid eyeliner
Apply eyeliner to your upper eyelash line
Use your liner to draw a line as close to your upper lash line as possible, start from the inner lash line to the outer corner. The line doesn’t necessarily have to be neat but it determines the width of your eye liner. To create a dramatic look you can make it a thick line but for a subtle look go for a thin line. You can either draw a single stroke line or many short strokes
To create your wing; draw a line starting from the last lash outwards; you can now decide the length and angle to the eyeliner.
After drawing your wing, draw a line back to your upper lash line, this should create an empty triangle on your upper lid. Color in the triangle.
To measure out how far you want the wing to go, hold a pencil at the end point of your bottom lash line, point it upward to look like a continuation of your lower lash line, then draw a line out to the end of the wing, the line should match the measurement you visualized while holding the pencil, fill in and thicken the line.

You can clean it or any mistake with a cotton bud soaked in makeup remover
Make sure you use your liner after using your eyeshadow and before using your mascara
Use a hands free mirror so you can use both of your hands while trying to apply the eyeliner.
If you’re using liquid eyeliner, let it dry briefly before you blink to prevent it from smearing.


Home Remedy For Skin Tags

Hello Ladies. I’m sure you’ve come across a couple of people who have skin tags…. Or you might personally be battling with it around your neck and chin area. They are those tiny dark clumps of skin you could find on your face and parts of your body
It can be a tad embarrassing, especially when you want to rock that really cute off-the-shoulder dress. If you’re sure you’re ready to take it out, here are the two ways you can achieve that:
First sterilize the scissors with boiling water, flame, hydrogen peroxide, or alcohol before l usage. Use ice cubes on the skin tag for about 10-15 minutes to numb the area. Now, aiming at a position close to the skin, cut off the skin tag as fast as possible. Use a cotton for wiping off the blood. Apply a little salt or antiseptic cream after this procedure to prevent infection and for faster healing.
This involves the use of a thread or a string for blocking the blood circulation to the skin tag.  Lack of circulation will cause the skin tag to shrink, dry off and finally fall off.
Tie a thin string or a dental floss around the skin tag tightly. Leave it on for several days until the skin tags comes out. The procedure may cause some pain but I think it’s easier than the cutting method.
Source: GlamByTee makeovers

Travel In Style!

The holidays are almost here and a lot of us are already planning our own brief Easter travels. Have you paid much attention to your luggage lately?
Whether it’s for a weekend away or a fancy holiday abroad, your luggage should mirror your inner travel goddess. Don’t leave home without a stylish suitcase that can fit your necessities without weighing you down. Glide through the airport, and arrive in style in any if these stylish carryons.
Although we’ve seen many celebrities walk out from the terminal in sky high stilettoes and pumps, the reality is that she probably has someone else lugging her baggage for her, whereas carrying an overflowing tote, laptop bag and roll suitcase by yourself is really only manageable in flats – but cute flats nonetheless. Consider easy to slip on ballerina flats or a pair of fancy sneakers to make your journey through the airport or bus Park a breeze.
No matter how warm it is wherever you’re flying from or to, it’s always 10 to 20 degrees colder in the plane. Don’t set yourself up for catching a cold. There is nothing worse than getting sick on a holiday. Don’t just bring any type of jacket. Make sure the jacket is luxe and stylish.
Be an abiding airplane passenger and do not bring more than one carryon baggage and personal item with you. Not only is it the rule, it also keeps you sane from trying to keep track of all your belongings. The solution to this problem is a big-ass tote. You can fit everything in there, laptop and fashion magazines included. If you have a stylish backpack you’ve been dying to rock, this is your opportunity.
There’s no need for full-glam on a journey. The dry, stale air, the bad lighting and long hours are not ideal for foundations, eyeliners and lipstick. All you need is a trusty lip balm to keep your lips hydrated.

Fruits & Vegetables For Conservative Diet

Whether you’re trying to lose weight, go on a diet or just stay healthy, certain fruits and vegetables have just the right nutrients to keep you going and they don’t cost a fortune.
Here are some fruits and vegetables to consider for a conservative diet:
1.  Citrus  
Citrus fruits like oranges and grapefruits are not only refreshingly sweet, but they are loaded with phytonutrients that can boost your heart’s health by lowering cholesterol and reducing the inflammation of your arteries. In addition, citrus fruits will boost your immune system due to the high presence of vitamin C in them, and are likely to reduce risks of female cancers while also improving skin health.
Common citrus fruits include:

They are rich in vitamin C and help give you an energy boost. An orange after a meal helps with digestion and prevents constipation.

Orange on the outside and red on the inside, these delicious fruits are tangy and sweet. They are great for losing weight and detoxing.

Lemons are good for more than just a refreshing glass of lemonade. They help with various conditions like diabetes and throat infections and even help improve your skin and teeth.
Key Lime: Limes serve as a good appetizers and their sour taste can drive your body out of fatigue. They can be added to tea or mixed with honey

Tangerines are really an all-in-one solution. They can be used to make a facial mask for brighter skin or used in a fruit salad for a protein boost

2. Leafy Greens:
The indispensable nutrients packed in leafy greens like spinach, pumpkin leaves (ugwu), kale, and cabbage are not to be missed. Aside from their alkalizing and cleansing effects in the body, kale and cabbage rank high in cancer-fighting natural properties like glucosinolates. These leafy wonders are good fibre sources and are super-packed with vital nutrients like magnesium and calcium which combined, may effectively slow the breakdown of bone as you age. Other nutrients found in them are vitamins A, C, K, folate, and potassium.
3. Tomatoes:
Tomatoes are found everywhere; we see them at every corner in the market and on the streets. But amazingly, we overlook the multiple nutritional values of this fruit. , and are an outstanding source of lycopene. Lycopenes are powerful antioxidants and diets rich in them can lower blood pressure and bad cholesterol levels. They also reduce the risk of stroke, breast and ovarian cancers significantly. Nursing mothers are not left out as tomatoes increase of Red carrots and watermelon also have abundance of Lycopene
4. Apples:
Do you know that the saying – an apple a day keeps the doctor away – isn’t farfetched? Apples boost immunity and are rich in quercetin, an antioxidant that can reinforce your body’s disease-fighting abilities.
Looking for sure ways to improve your quality of life? With these fruits and vegetables, you’ll boost your health, keep some diseases away, and of course keep yourself fit & trim. They certainly shouldn’t be lacking on your list of consumables, don’t you agree?

Healthy Nigerian Smoothie Recipes

Making smoothies is a refreshing way to enjoy a healthy mix of fresh fruits and vegetables fast.
If you are on a weight loss journey like me, they come in handy as good substitutes for carbonated drinks.  I’ve recently developed a craving for smoothies and knowing the healthy punch they pack, I’m going to share some of my tryouts with you.

Pineapple Coconut Banana Smoothie:

This is an all time tropical mix – creamy and delicious! Highly nutritious coconuts and pineapple are rich in fibre, folate, vitamins C, E, and B. Minerals including iron, selenium, sodium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous are also nutrients to be enjoyed in this smoothie mix. Bananas have a good amount of healthy antioxidants; all three fruits are healthy and yummy!

1 cup of shredded coconut (for easy blending)
1 medium sized banana (peeled and cut into chunks)
1 cup of diced pineapple
1 cup of Coconut milk/Almond milk/Greek yoghurt

       2. Spinach Apple Cucumber Smoothie:
This mix is super nourishing. With the valuable nutrients found in the trio, a glass of this gives your body the vitamins A, C and K that it needs for the day. This smoothie is rich in fibre, magnesium, iron, manganese, folate, potassium, manganese. It’s got high antioxidant properties too.  For this smoothie, an addition of low fat yoghurt helps improve the taste of the spinach or ugwu leaves.

A handful of washed spinach/ ugwu leaves
1 medium sized chopped apple
1 medium sized chopped cucumber
½ tsp of ginger (optional for a hint of spice)
Crushed ice cubes (optional)
1 cup of low-fat/greek yoghurt

       3. Orange Pineapple Carrot Smoothie:
This particular one is my daughter’s favourite. Oranges are sodium free, sweet but low in calories, and are a healthy dose of vitamin C and fibre. Carrots are well-known for their nutritional benefits to the eyes, and studies have shown their potentiality in reducing the risk of certain cancers. Oranges are known to be quite effective in managing blood sugar levels. Add some pineapples to give it a dash of tropical flavour.

2 whole oranges (peeled and cut into small chunks)
2 whole carrots (washed and chopped)
1 cup of diced pineapples
¼ tsp of turmeric or ginger (optional for spice)
1 cup of water or low fat yoghurt (base)
Crushed ice cubes

The preparation method is simple, fast and straightforward:
Cut up your fruits, add them up into the blender and blend on high-speed for 1-3 minutes till you have it smooth and foamy. If you prefer your smoothie pulp-free, simply pour the thick blend through a strainer to have a purely liquid drink.
You’ve got busy mornings? Save some time by keeping your washed diced fruits in the fridge before you need them. This also makes it possible to drink your smoothie right after you blend the fruits without having to freeze it again.
There’s no limitation when it comes to smoothies. Make your choice from the wide array of fruits and vegetables in the market. And keep experimenting to find what suits your taste buds…cool right?  

Confessions of A Lagos Mum-My Life

My only resolve this New Year, as I have given up making New Year resolutions 8 years ago was not to work during the weekends. Whether it was bringing work home or spending 3 to 7 hours at the office on Saturday or Sunday, I was not having any of that any more. So when faced with that option that Friday I decided to remain in the office and get the work done. So I called my husband who was also working late, we both agreed to get home at 11 PM and make our children the focus of the weekend. I called the nanny and gave her clear instructions on the course of events for the rest of the day. Secretly, I planned to steal at least an hour alone with my husband before mid-night.
One can imagine my reaction and thoughts when I arrived at home to find all my children in front of the television in different positions, doing different activities (including sleeping.) After our usual theatrical greetings of my return (that of their father is a much larger production) we all set about our bedtime rituals. As they were all in their jamies, they straightened the living room and put away their toys.
When my younger three asked for bed time stories I declined telling them it was one of the consequences of not being in bed at the right time and the other being no television the next day despite it being a Saturday. I then faced my older two, asking for an explanation of the camp by the television at 10 PM. Other than the new movie out on one of the children’s channels on cable, my children’s self discipline was on an all time low because they failed to get to bed an hour earlier when the movie ended. They too were informed that there would be no television all of the next day with additional chores.
Then my soliloquy began. This was becoming a repeated incidence for my older two though I took comfort in the fact they had little ones with them while the nanny was on the phone. I knew my husband and I had to talk it through and bring it to an end. I remembered the days when the only options were NTA Channel 5, NTA Channel 10, LTV 8, ABS and OGTV to name a few. The option of 24 hours of children’s programmes wasn’t available and I remember my mother always being home before sunset. I then projected into the future; we wanted this to be our last year paying rent.
We had to cut off all treats including the cinemas and others the kids enjoyed and I knew my older two really missed those. Notwithstanding, they all had to stick to their routine in this season of our lives. Did I forget to mention, I successfully made peppered snail with green, change my outfit and the atmosphere in my bedroom while this monologue was going on. Also, the only unromantic thing my husband did that night was to disconnect the cable while we both agreed to tackle this issue. I did get my wordless prayer answered with a bit extra. Jesus Igwe.

10 Minutes Workout Routine for Mums

Being a mother can be such a very stressful job. If you are like many mums who wished they had more than 24 hours a day to get things done, then you will agree that fixing in your workout routine can even be a harder task. Why is this so? Well, this may be due to the fact that you might be too overwhelmed with some routine tasks, so that squeezing a workout spare time might be a no-no. But did you know that it is really important for you to actually steal some 10 minutes away just to work out?
Truth is that mums aren’t superhuman – they do deserve to be fit and that is why you have got to create time no matter how little to see that things are right within the body. These workouts can fit into your busy schedule and take up just 10 minutes of your time and you can be sure to look and feel refreshed aftewards.
1. The Chair Squats Workout
For this workout, you stand in front of a chair with your feet hip-distance apart, and toes forward. Then lean your chest slightly forward. Bend your knees and tap (do not sit) the bottom on chair, then stand up.  Be sure to keep your weight in your heels and do a set of ten.
2. The Spinal Twist
This is yet another easy workout that you can perform at home. Sit upright at the edge of a chair, feet on the ground, knees bent 90-degrees and your hands crossed at chest level. What is more, twist your upper torso as far as you can to the left, rotating from the waist and allowing your head and shoulders to move together as one unit. Hold for 15 seconds, then return to the start.
3. The Static Run
Here, you’ll be in one position and move your feet as if you were running on a track. You can increase your pace as you muster more strength and stamina. It is important that you do this on a hard floor so that you have enough room for balance. Count up to ten and then do a repeat as you go along.
4. The Freestyle Dance
If you haven’t been dancing as a form of workout, then you’re missing out on a lot. Did you know that one of the best form of workouts for mums is dancing? Well, if you didn’t know that, then it’s important that you learn a few moves to keep fit. And, guess what? You don’t need to have been a great dancer before starting. If you are a rookie, you can start by moving your whole body to your favourite high tempo songs in your home.
Indeed these workout routines can strengthen your cardiovascular muscles as you sweat it out. It is also known to aid the circulation of blood. Incorporate these exercises into your daily morning or bedtime routines and you would be amazed at the results.

Confessions of A Lagos Mum: Hour Glass

Recently, some women in my form in boarding school got together. We decided to come together under one umbrella, have meetings and support each other in any way we could. So we created a chat group on WhatsApp, and one on Face book and we are also looking into creating a website for ourselves. Less than a fortnight into the creation of the chat, 105 of the 152 girls had been added to the chat. Looking at the bio data of the 105 we got so far there are 38 clinicians, 26 business owners, 5 lecturers and 2 stay at home mums. The rest are in the civil service, armed forces, information technology, banking and telecoms in the different sectors of the economy.
These figures alone make us all agree with Jennifer Hudson’s statement, ‘’I am so glad I was born a woman in this time.’’ Also the statement, ’’This is the best time to be born a woman.’’ It took just 72 hours to have a meeting with 25 of us in attendance. There was so much left over that almost everyone took something home and we were able to thank our hostess’ husband with a bottle of Hennessey and a small tray of snails. On the downside, 3 of us are drifters and were unable to finish their university education and are yet to acquire any skill to irk out a decent living. 2 of us have been widowed, the first after only 3 years of marriage and one child.
 Nine of us are of blessed memory, 2 as a result of accidents, one of us was shot in cold blood by her husband of 12 years and the rest were due to complications from child birth. 3 women have never married while 28 are divorced. This reality was the hardest to put away as just another statistic. So as I looked at our pictures on Facebook, the other coordinators related the events that led to the different tragedies we had faced over 25 years.
I could not help but notice despite their geographical locations, personalities and backgrounds, so many of us had lost that lustre and glow that we took for granted while growing up. Thanks to modern technology we were able to upload tons of our school pictures on Facebook and have them all side by side – graduations, weddings and award pictures. It was quite clear how much pain and sorrow had crept into the once innocent and care free eyes and hearts of so many of us. No matter how we smiled, did our hair and make-up, like stubborn stains it could not be wiped away or properly camouflaged.
I forgot to add, in 2009, one of us delivered a 3.75 kg baby boy after her fallopian tube had been surgically removed 9 years before he was born. He is a bundle of great joy and energy. Again, it was extremely difficult to overlook the reality that his mum has one of the greatest glows of us all on Facebook and at our meeting as we voted officials.