Alicia Keys at the BET Awards – Getty Images
“Look, I love makeup too. It’s about how you feel. It’s about who you are. It’s about just being who you are and not letting anyone tell you who you should be. Even this conversation shows our obsession of the standard we hold women.” – Alicia Keys
I have been drawn to this season of The Voice – and to Alicia Keys in particular. There is something about Keys: her warmth, her genuine encouragement, her appreciation of the artistry, and hearing her own voice. But there has been something more – I couldn’t put my finger on it until I finally realized – she wasn’t wearing makeup! What I didn’t know was that Keys made the announcement she would be going without makeup last May. Keys has explained that the decision came after years of growing as an artist and reaching a point where she felt content in her own skin: “I don’t want to cover up anymore.” The result has been incredibly inspiring to others.
Inspiring, too, is Keys’ skin regimen. W interviewed Keys’ longtime makeup artist, Dotty about what keeps it looking so fresh and beautiful. On the list was the use of oils and how it’s important not to be afraid of using them. “People get freaked out about oils. They think if they’ve got oily skin they don’t want oil,” Dotti complains. “But yes you do!” I agree wholeheartedly, and love using oils in my daily regimen. In fact, I have noticed a huge difference in my own skin.
I love how Alicia Keys is inspiring women everywhere to embrace who we are, just as we are!
A few years ago I revamped my closet
The New Year is a time to regroup and give yourself a break with a clean slate. When I looked at my closet a week ago I knew a clean slate for me would start with a clean closet. What a mess! I could no longer see my wardrobe pieces clearly and that was when I knew: you can’t style what you can’t see. I also knew that I had forgotten what my dear friend Kim taught me just a few years ago – I was holding on to things that were no longer right for me. How had I let this happen in such a short time?
Two years ago I met my beloved and talented friend, style editor, Kim Naci, who had come to my house for a closet audit and frankly, a bit of an emotional ‘what for?” She took a brutal look at my clothes – what I should keep and what I should let go. And her message? Love everything you own, and if you don’t – then remove it – immediately! Because you are worth it and you deserve to wear only the right clothes. Kim’s words about a somewhat threadbare black handbag that I had been clinging to still haunt me when she said: “Melissa, you’re better than that!” We are all better than that. The truth is that we all accumulate too much, hang on too much and wear too much that does’t work and that we just don’t love. Most of the time we don’t even know we are doing it or why. But as we continue this pattern we are not caring for ourselves and we certainly aren’t making room for the clothes and accessories we should be wearing. They simply get lost in the overflow. You can find yourself reaching for the same (wrong) pieces and creating the same outfits over again without hitting your true potential.
A closet cleanse is an organizational and emotional breakthrough. Weeding out the wrong and keeping the right makes you feel better about yourself. And creating a beautiful space for your wardrobe is just as important (even down to using proper hangers and storage organizers). They all create a feeling of self-worth and love – just in time for the New Year.
Hair colorist, Isak, opened my eyes earlier this week, when he talked about society’s should messages about hair and age. I realize that for the last 20 years, I have slowly but surely cut my hair, as I reached certain ages and stages in my life. And you know what? I no longer like wearing my hair shorter! So, I have changed that. In today’s podcast, I talk about these harmful should messages and remind us to stay clear of them!
Photo by Kim Naci