How To Get Your Life When You Feel Lost

I. Am. Still. Trying. To. Figure. It. Out.

Everyday is a challenge.

No, seriously.

A multitude of things has happened during my time away from my blogging safe haven. I am finishing up the final touches of redecorating my room. My heart was broken. I booked a vacation rental to Costa Rica for my 23rd birthday. My heart was broken again lol. I lost my voice. I stopped writing. I began to feel very uninspired. I re-found my voice. I wrote. A lot. I realigned my goals. My laptop broke – which ultimately stopped me from blogging to you all about all the things that I’ve been dealing with. I got a new laptop. I started to revisit the world of dating -yass honey! I started my natural body butters. I’ve been learning and experimenting with new jewelry designs and finding ways to better myself and my craft. I tried being vegan for a week. I realized that I can only be vegan for a week and the pescatarian lifestyle is for me lol. I also realized that my working environment isn’t one that makes me happy. Realized that a part of the reason that it is so hard to steadily be happy and journey on towards peace is because I am surrounded by more negative things, people and places than I thought. I realized that I need to separate myself from those things now more than ever for the sake of my mental health, clarity and continuous path to self love. Oh, I need a new job guys. This is FACTS. I’m actively looking. However, I also realized that my true goal is to work for myself. Aside from that, I also had to remind myself that even during my times of doubt and frustration that I am an extraordinary, exceptional, brilliant and beautiful human being. So for the time I was away ….. I laughed, I cried, I learned … and realized that I am a confused, beautiful but … seriously a confused mess and I need to get my life.

Yes, you read that long ass paragraph only for it to end with “I’m confused”. I am lost in translation. Swept up in thoughts of how to make myself a better person than I was yesterday and caught between making those around me happy, helping out where I can and perfecting my craft and writing and re-finding my voice and just wanting some plain old love and attention!

If the title has compelled you to read this then you’re probably waiting for the part where I give a list of proper advice about how to get ya life! Listen, this is one time where I am just as lost as you. No proper advice over here just the beginning phases of life getting that I went through, lol.


During my time away I learned that the best way to start is to identify the problem. The source of stress. Source of sadness, hindrance, confusion etc. For me, that was identifying that I felt stuck, stagnant and complacent.

Then I stopped in my tracks and thought about why I felt this way. I’ve been out of college for over a year now. I don’t have a job in my field. I gave up a year of my life to help out someone who doesn’t seem to appreciate it. My business has been open for a year and I feel like it should be bigger than it is (while I do know these things take patience, time, hard work and dedication). A relationship that I thought was going to flourish in every sense of the word … failed. I couldn’t hold on to money. Felt like important people in my life weren’t matching the effort in which I give them (this still holds true but this is for another post lol). Oh man, and so much more.

I cried. Then I cried some more. I let out a rage of emotions.

Then I snapped out of it.

If you are a frequent reader of my blog, it won’t surprise you that I then made a list.

I made a list of goals. Then I prioritized them. Then I made a list of how to accomplish them. I made a list of my feelings. Then I made a list of how to work through each one.

I consoled myself. Because at 2 a.m when you feel like the world is crashing down on you and there’s no one you can call .. you’re all you have. And even when you feel like you deserve more than that or you don’t feel like that’s not enough … YOU HAVE TO BE ENOUGH FOR YOU. No matter what.

I revisited yoga and different breathing practices. Because during this time, I stopped and I could feel the tension rising within me.

I prayed. I’m not religious in any sense of the word but I believe in a higher power and I find solace in talking to that being.

I woke up one morning and I decided that I could no longer let my feelings of complacency stop me from being motivated and taking charge of my life.

I woke up that same morning grateful that I have been given another chance to make things right & to be my best self.

I applied to jobs. I read a little. Put on a face mask. Laughed. Facetimed bae and told myself that the following days would be different.

I spoke my goals into existence and I have been doing it since that morning.

Then I smiled because the only place to go from here is up. There will be a few more bad patches along the way -I know. There will be more times, when I’m feeling less grateful and less blissful, more discouraged, more frustrated but I know that I will overcome it. As I stated before, I am an extraordinary, beautiful, intelligent, confused mess and I realized if it wasn’t so, I wouldn’t be me and I couldn’t and wouldn’t have it any other way.

& CHECK .. there you have it, in the midst of all things confusing, ya girl has begun to get her life.

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Dear Black Women …

There’s this thing women do … specifically black women. I hate it.

We live in a world where the black woman is constantly mistreated. We are unheard. Abused. Considered the low of the low. And when we speak out about the injustices that we face, we are deemed angry, aggressive, unruly and (my favorite) ghetto/ratchet .. when really we are just indignant and tired.

That’s why I hate it.

I HATE when women – women of color, my sisters talk down to and judge other sisters. It does something to me. Pisses me off on a whole other level.

I was tempted to talk about this at this particular moment for two reasons:

  1. Sometime last week, a young idiot on twitter decided to post this picture along with a caption that read “Ladies, line up in order from Chill to Petty”. To which he received many wonderful RT’s that included things like ” Line up in order from independent to child supportive” and “Line up in order from highest to lowest GPA” among others.image
    All I could think at that moment was ‘wow’. A black man sending out that tweet. I mean, it’s sad to say but sometimes it doesn’t seem that the black man is on our side. Then I had to change my point of view and I narrowed it down to age and ignorance because well he is young and clearly has much growing up to do.
    So what does that have to do with us, black women?

    Well, I took to FB and I was insanely close to calling out (some) black men for their lack of respect and for demeaning black woman  for the exact thing that they praise white women for … until I saw a dark skinned woman repost the picture. Instead of firing rage at the young man that posted this disgusting picture and calling black woman to stand together, her comment was something along the lines of “All light skinned women think they’re better when really they are just submissive and uneducated because they don’t need to be. They get a pass because of their skin color and they don’t know the ‘real’ struggle of being a black woman”.
    I was truly amazed. I was even more amazed as I saw the comments under the post.
    I mean, dark skinned woman, light skinned, brown skinned, yellow, purple and blue … all these woman were angry with each other and I was insanely confused and entirely appalled.

  2. After seeing that post, I remembered a conversation I had with someone (let’s call her Erica). Erica, my younger brother and myself were having a conversation about my brothers ‘relationships’. My younger brother stated that he would never date a dark skinned woman, to which I looked at him and his dark skin, thought about his mother and her dark skin and asked if he was stupid before asking him why not. He stated that he just didn’t want anyone dark. As I tried to explain to his young, ignorant, 16 year old mind how ridiculous he sounded spewing self hate, Erica stated that she defended my brother. She continued on to say that her son could never bring someone that is “too dark” home and I had to look at her like she was insane.

    The hate that we black woman share for one another is disgusting. (SOME) Light skin women denying their blackness and feeling as though they are better than others. (SOME) Dark skin women hating light skin women who are on their side and denying them the right to their blackness. And it’s more than just the fight between skin tones. Sometimes, I’ll see black women nit picking at anything that her sister does. “Natural vs Perms”, “Casual Dressing vs Mini Skirts”, “Hoes vs Wife Material”. I mean it’s repulsive. To hear my sisters, black women constantly belittle and judge each other. Especially when we have so much working against us.

    It’s clear that I am a ‘high yellow’ light skin chick. I get that. I also get that because of colorism in our culture sometimes I am ‘favored’ more than my darker skin sisters. But, I try to change that. For this present, and the future. I try to empower all woman of color because at the end of the day my fight is your fight and your fight is mine. We all have different experiences being a black woman but that doesn’t mean anyone’s story is inferior to anyone elses. How can we expect to overcome the Donald Trumps in the world if we keep holding ourselves back. There’s this constant battle between who is better than who and all I keep wondering is why the hell can’t we all be great. Praise our strengths and where we come from, acknowledge our faults and learn from them while banding together to become stronger than any of our persecutors ever imagined.

    We are bigger than the fight that was created for us. We are bigger than this systematic oppression they have laid in front of our faces. It was said over 300 years ago that the way to keep the black race down was to create a division within. That is was colorism is. Pinning us against one another. And in a time where we have white women preaching feminism that doesn’t account for us, in a time where non black women want to be black and steal our culture without knowing our struggles and giving us credit, in a time where a white mans only use for a black woman is to sexualize and fetishize us, in a time where many black men don’t appreciate us, I challenge you to uplift your sister and not help in holding her back.

    We all have to do better. ❤

    So, what I’m trying to say is … who gonna have our backs if we don’t have it?

xoxo
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12 Black Businesses To Shop From

For the past few months I have been really keen on switching over to buying from my black sisters and brothers. Here, I have compiled a short list of 12 black businesses that I have (or plan) to buy from/support in the upcoming weeks. Check it out ! ❤

For Head Gear

  1. Visit The Wrap Life .


Out of Brooklyn, NY, Nnenna Stella offers a variety of beautiful hand printed African inspired head wraps among other things.

2. Visit Loc Soc

Bear

This business offers a wrap that is for fashion and protective styling. Two in one! Made with locs in mind, it has now been adapted to wear with any style, length or texture of hair.


Apparel

3. Visit Kashmir.VIII

Image of Adore (All Over Tee)

Kashmir Thompson’s giant selection offers everything from clutches, t-shirts to even coasters.

Image of Grace (Clutch)

4. Visit The Very Black Project

_DSC0022-2.jpgCreated in 2014, this website features hats and sweatshirts (among other things) and was made so that we could un-apologetically love our blackness. Lol, how could you not want to support that?

5. Visit Tees In The Trap

This website features phone cases, coffee mugs, totes and of course t-shirts. All of these items are accented with popular terms and catch phrases from the hip-hop community, black culture and just everyday life.

6. Visit Mo’s Bows

Yellow Floral

A 14 year old from Memphis is the CEO of Mo’s Bows hand made bow ties. He realized his love for fashion and at the age of 9 started his own company. I think we should all take the time out to re-evaluate our lives because this kid is amazing, lol!

7. Visit Gloss Rags
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This website features the names of our brothers and sisters that have been victims of police brutality, unfair justice system and unjustified killings on t-shirts. It’s a beautiful way to pay homage to those who are no longer with us.


Hair Care

8. Visit Camille Rose Naturals
Moroccan Pear Conditioning Custrad is a culinary cocktail blend of nourishing oils to soften and protect the hair's moisture barrier. Recipe: Our natural buttercream base is silkened with a culinary cocktail oil blend of Moroccan pear, Cherry Kernel and Urica (nettle). Vitamin-rich extracts A,B,C,D & K are mixed with protective Antioxidants to offer potent nourishment to strands in need of a little TLC. Rich Omega 6 and 9 top off this powerfully sweet conditioning treat for all hair types.

To all my brothers and sisters that are interested in using all natural products, this is for you! Developed in 2010 by Janell Stephens, Camille Rose Naturals is dedicated to providing hair care as well as beauty care products that are natural and hand made.


Beauty

9. Visit The Lip Bar

 

This website features a variety of beautiful lipsticks. Besides the amazing price, I love that they use natural ingredients such as jojoba oil and shea butter in their products.

10. Visit  Ka’oir Cosmetics

Baby Bleu by Kaoir

CEO Keyshia Ka’oir offers a make up line that has the most radiant and beautiful lipsticks. Her website also features lashes, and nail products.


Fun!

11. Visit Cards For All People

Black Card Revoked - Original Flavor

Reminiscent of the popular game ‘Cards Against Humanity’, Cards For All People challenges your knowledge about black culture.


Jewelry

12. Visit Cielo’s Hippie Shop

Lapis Adjustable Necklace - De La Jipi Collection

Now what kind of person would I be if I didn’t feature myself in this list of black businesses to shop from, lol! I am very much inspired by bohemian culture and incorporate a variety of healing stones in my designs.


With that being said, I hope you enjoyed this short list of black businesses to buy from. ❤

xoxo
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Before You Love Them | Love Yourself

Love is a feeling – truth. You can experience love by simply loving yourself – truth. You can also experience love by loving someone else – truth. Some people feel unfulfilled unless they find love from a significant other or family member or friend – truth.
However, the truth is also that we don’t need the love of another to experience true love but many fail to realize that.

I mean at one point, I failed to realize that. For the most part, my friends and I have what many would call “daddy issues”. We would talk about how our fathers continuously disappointed us and weren’t really there for us growing up as we would have liked. Although none of us ever said it, the feeling that penetrated the room as we spoke of our fathers was heavy. We were sad, hurt and feeling unworthy of love. And that’s just an example, it could be with any family member or loved one.

I can even recall so many instances that my friends and I would sit in a circle discussing the traits that we would want in a significant other and wondering WHEN that person was going to just walk right into our path. We would discuss the many ways that we would show our love and talk about how different this one would be from the last. Then, we would be so hard on ourselves if a ‘situationship’ didn’t work out and really self doubt our love for ourselves and contemplate what traits we needed to fix in order to hold the attention of a potential.

We often wondered why ___ didn’t love us or ____ wasn’t attracted to us or what it was that we did wrong.  When in reality the only trait we needed to fix was that we weren’t falling in love with ourselves first, but trying to find love outside of ourselves.

I am firm believer that you can not help anyone, can not love anyone (truly love), can not inspire anyone etc until you do these things for yourself (or at least try).

As I am on this journey to self love and happiness and tranquility and all things positive, I have had setbacks Self-Lovewith love – especially the love I have for myself. So I concocted a list of ways to begin the process of falling in love with yourself. Now keep in mind that I am a work in progress and these have been working for me – but we all are different. I suggest you all give this list a try and add on anything (positive) that will work for you.

1. Live In Your Truth

For a LONG time I was afraid of being me. In turn I couldn’t fully grasp the idea of loving myself because I was being a superficial version of myself. I tried to be the person I thought my family wanted, the person that my ‘friends’ would want to be a around and the person that I thought was deserving of a partner.

Then I realized that I am a fierce, beautiful, self proclaimed weird girl, hippie chick, pro-melanin, flower child, Rasta enthusiast, artist, culture lover, natural haired, light skinned, brown eyes, spiritual being, (and much more) woman. That is my truth and I decided to live in it. And if the people in my life don’t accept that or want that or understand that truth .. that’s their problem, not mine.

Now your truth doesn’t have to be ANYTHING like mine. You just have to accept it and take pride in it -whatever it is and you are already going down the right path.


2. Don’t Lose Yourself For Someone Else

Now I’m not saying compromise isn’t necessary with ANYONE that you love (partner, family, friends), because it is – but when you start to compromise your self love and things that you truly believe in, maybe it’s time to take a step back and really look at the situation you are in. Don’t lose yourself trying to love someone else.


3. Write As Many Lists As Needed

Now this may just be my thing .. but writing lists makes me feel like I have my life sorted out – or like I’m getting there.

I love writing lists about every and anything. As you guys can see I wrote a list about 51 things that make me happy. Just the same, I wrote a list about things that make me sad in hopes of changing those things or eliminating those things from my life.

I wrote a list about places that I would love to travel to. A list about things that I need to change in my physical and spiritual life. Then I jot down ways to accomplish these things. And as I do, I feel empowered, one with my emotions, I have a sense of self and I feel like I’m taking steps to fully fall in love with myself.


4. Take The Time To Be Alone … And Enjoy It

This may be what I struggle with most. Sometimes, I’m alone and I’m fine. Sometimes, I’m alone and I feel lonely and I HATE it.I’m trying to cut that out.

I think that whenever we are alone, we need to appreciate that. Enjoy that time to just be. Write. Think (not too much lol). Read. Blog. Youtube. Watch Tv. Do Yoga. Exercise. Write a list lol. Do anything – just appreciate that time.

Also take yourself on a date. Don’t worry, I’m working up the courage to take myself out, too.


5. Find What Inspires You

Find the key, your muse, your inspiration and let that help to lift you up.

What’s mine?
Love. Positivity. Seeing my end goal of happiness and self love and success in the horizon. Sometimes, I breathe, relax, cry a little and believe in and feel my goals and dreams coming to life. It is in that moment that I feel ultimate peace.


6. Spend Time With People Who Bring Light Into Your Life

Sometimes being alone is good. Sometimes being around loved ones is better. Spend time with people who TRULY get you and bring happiness, calmness, liveliness and just beautiful luminescent light into your life.


7. Understand Your Worth

You are worth the love you give to yourself. You are worth living in your truth. You are worth writing down as many lists as you need. You are worth having your alone time. You are worth feeling inspired. You are worth being around loved ones. You are worth EVERYTHING that YOU BELIEVE you are worth.

So start believing that you are worth it.

Stop accepting positive things into your life by saying “it’s just luck” or “omg I can’t believe that happened to me”. Believe it, it’s more than luck because YOU ARE WORTH IT. We all are.


8. Look In The Mirror … Talk To Yourself

Now it might sound crazy …. but it’s not. Sometimes when I’m feeling down and nothing else is working, I walk over to my mirror. I stare at myself .. for a while, most of the times tears streaming down my face and I give myself a pep talk.

If I have to yell at myself, then I do.”Get it together! You are better than this.”

If I need to some positive words, then I give them. “You got this.”

If I need to remind myself not to get so worked up, I remind. “Relax, breathe.”

If I need a hug, I wrap my arms around my waist and I give it.

I look into that mirror and I give myself whatever I need because when everything else is gone, when everyone else returns to their own life … all you have is you.

And that has got to be enough. The love you have for yourself .. it has to be enough.

So love yourself first.

 

xoxo
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DIY – Jewelry Dish

For the new year, I decided that I wanted to redecorate my room. Specifically, I wanted to turn my desk of junk (sorry, I forgot a before picture) into a more organized area filled with my jewelry and other knick knacks found around my room. I had already purchased a nail polish holder and ring holder from Amazon and a storage box from Walmart .. but I really couldn’t find anything to hold my Jewelry in.

I looked through Amazon, Walmart and Bed Bath and Beyond (places that are usually key in finding things like this) but I couldn’t find one that caught my eye .. or if it did, it was way out of my price range. I mean, it’s just a little thing to hold my bracelets and earrings so I really didn’t feel comfortable spending more than 20 bucks on it.

Anyways, after a few tries I got super annoyed and started looking for things around the house that I could use to make my own jewelry dish instead of spending! With that being said this is my first DIY for 2016 and I hope you guys like it (It’s super cheap too!)

What You’ll Need

  • A pencil case (If you don’t have an old one .. you can find one at a 99 cent store. Don’t worry about getting something super sturdy or expensive, you’re going to cut it anyways!)
  • Acrylic Paint or Spray Paint
  • Cleaning Agent (Alcohol, Sanitary Wipes Etc.)
  • Hot glue gun and/or adhesive (Optional)

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  1. Clear a working space. I just use an old blanket.
  2. After gathering all your items, cut your pencil case in half. Make sure to cut off all the excess pieces as well. Then be sure to clean the pencil case. Mine is literally years old so that Sani-Cloth (pictured below) came in HANDY!
    diy2
  3. Wait until the pencil case is dry and then get to work. I chose to use Spray Paint because I’m lazy and it was just easier for me. Also it’s less time consuming .. which is lazy x2 lol. However, if you’re looking to really design your work of art and go all out then you might want to try out Acrylic Paint.
    If you don’t have access to Acrylic Paint, you can go to your local Arts&Crafts store (Michaels, Sallys Etc) and pick some up; they’re about $1.00/2.00 for each. Spray Paint is a bit more expensive (I had some already), I pick mine up from Home Depot for about 4 dollars a can.
    diy3
    You want to make sure that you do two/three even coats and let it dry at least 20 minutes before each coat. This is going to make the color come out more vibrant and evenly.
  4. (Optional Step) If you have a ring holder (like the one pictured below) you can hot glue it to one of your jewelry dishes for an extra design. Being that I’m more of a minimalist, I opted to do that rather than add extra designs to the exterior of my jewelry dish.
  5. (Optional Step) If you’re willing to take the extra step and have adhesive or a glue gun .. feel free to add gems, ribbons or any other decorative design. Make this piece your own & have fun!

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I still have a lot more to do in redecorating my room but I’m glad I finally took this first step! Here’s a look at the completed space, hope you guys like it! Btw, I know I need to get up on my nail polish collection lol .. I’m working on it!

xoxo Cielo.

New Year, New Makeup !

Let me tell you … when I get a package full of makeup or purchase a new lippie .. I am CERTAIN that my heart skips at least 3 beats.

Lol. I couldn’t wait until 2016 to show you some new items that I bought (Yes, I know 2016 is literally 2 days away .. but what can I say, I couldn’t help myself!)

makeup

 Of my purchase, the majority came from ColourPOP which I am certain that you all are aware of by now.
First I want to talk about my other purchases.

I got the L’Oreal True Match Lumi Liquid Glow Illuminator in the color W101 Golden. It can be used as a primer and highlighter; although I prefer to use it as a highlighter. I would say that it is definitely a subtle highlight and something I would use for everyday wear. $12.49

I also got a Black Radiance Liquid Eyeliner. When it comes to eyeliners, I am pretty cheap. I feel like they all do the same thing so I refuse to spend a bunch of money on them. I never tried Black Radiance before but I have heard a ton of good reviews on the brand and the Wet n Wild eyeliners weren’t doing it for me anymore so I decided to give this a shot. $2.99

Last but not least (before we get to ColourPOP, I got an eyeshadow palette from Lorac. I picked this up from Nordstam Rack for about $14.00. This color is full of nudes and also full of colors that are great for creating a smokey eye. Not to mention that there are some colors that I would use as a highlighter as well! The pigmentation of the colors in this palette are amazing.
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On to the fun stuff

About a month or 2 ago, I decided to try out ColourPop and I picked up a few different shades. I was impressed already but after I saw two of my favorite Youtube Gurus ItsMyRayeRaye (who created her own color with ColourPOP) and IrisBeilin (who is just  great at makeup ❤ ) rave about not only ColourPOP lippies but also their eye shadows .. I decided that I should dabble in more than just their ultra matte lippies.

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Now I’m not perfect at eye shadow, but I’m trying to step my game up. I saw this beautiful ultra metallic color in the shade GAME FACE and had to have it. The color pay off of this shade is ridiculous ❤ ❤ ❤ and I can not wait to incorporate this my makeup routine, lol! I’m not sure but I believe this was $8.00.

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This highlight color is so beautiful. This is in the shade ELECTRIC SLIDE. This feels amazing on the skin .. I mean it just glides right on. This color would definitely be if I’m trying to blind people with my highlight! I can NOT wait to use this! $8.00

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 I’m building up my collection slowly but surely. So, I got this bronzer in the color POOLSIDE. I adore this color but I wish that it was darker. I like my bronzer to be a bit dramatic but seeing this color on my skin didn’t do that much for me. $8.00

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Now for the lippies! *See, my heart skipped a beat!*
I would have done them one by one but lol that would take forever. So, from left to right the colors are Kapow, StingRaye, Tulle, Limbo, LAX, Zipper, Be Dazzled and Guess. Each $6.00

Kapow – My favorite. The end. There’s something about this color that is very transitional. Sexy but sophisticated. Fall color, but still Summer. Subtle but still out there. I just love it.

StingRaye – I wanted to try out ItsMyRayeRaye’s lip color. However, when I got this color I was a bit disappointed because it looks so much like Tulle (although it is a bit warmer and lighter). The color is still gorg though.

Tulle – Not one of my favorites but it is still a gorgeous color.

Limbo – This color is to die for! It’s like a darker version of Kapow. More sexy, more sultry, more sophisticated, more Fall, more everything! Lol

LAX – This color is a vampy red! Love it. I think I may be biased with these colors .. because once again this color is very sultry and just screams SEX!

Zipper – I adore this color. I have always like purples, plums and dark plum colors. This is no different. This is definitely more of a summer color but knowing me .. I’ll wear it around this time of year too. #Badass lol

Be Dazzled – Now this is more my color. Zipper is more of a bright purple where Be Dazzled is more of a dark purple which plays in that seductive look like I’m clearly into lately.

Guess – I love this color although it is not what I expected. When I bought this color, I expected a vamped up plum color but what I got was a purple so dark, it literally looks black. At first I was like -__- but honestly, black is my color too so I was okay with it. However, if you are def looking for a extremely dark purple (that isn’t black lol) then don’t get this color.

Of all the colors, Kapow, Limbo and LAX are my favorites but as I stated all the colors are gorgeous. All the colors are beautifully pigmented. All the colors are literally ULTRA MATTE. Lol

I can’t wait to get more products from ColourPOP and to just expand my makeup collection!

xoxo Cielo.