Wanderlust 108 with Swisse

I had the wonderful opportunity to attend Wanderlust 108 held in Washington, DC with Swisse - Australia’s No. 1 brand for vitamins and supplements. Wanderlust 108 is considered to be the “world’s only mindful triathlon.” What does that mean? Well, the event featured three mindful activities - Running/Walking, Yoga, and Mediation. Cool, right? What better way to start a Saturday morning. The schedule was full of activities from 6:30am - 2:00pm but I chose to do the 5K, mediate and hang out with the crew from Swisse. Since recently discovering Swisse, I was really excited to learn more about their premium quality supplements and what I can do to boost my nutrition.

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At Swisse’s #DestinationHappiness stunning Botanical Wall, I learned about my specific health needs and which vitamin boosts are best suited for me through an interactive digital platform.

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WOOOOOO HOOOOO! I was extremely pleased with my results. I was suggested the Women’s Ultivite Mulitvitamins to maintain my energy.

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I also discovered so many creative ways to detox and cleanse your body of toxins. From detoxifying Ashtanga yoga poses to supplements and choosing to eat the right foods that help with bloating (my biggest issue). I was starting to feel like a true wellness warrior ready to take on anything!

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Lunch was delicious and vegan!

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Hair, skin, and nail health is something we are all somewhat passionate about but it can become difficult to follow a routine when were committed to busy schedules and in my case, lots of travel. Swisse has both a liquid and tablet form of their special formula, either of which can be easily incorporated in your daily routine.

At #DestinationHappiness, I learned that the Swisse’s Hair, Skin, and Nails Liquid is made with blood orange extract from Sicily- not only is it delicious but that vitamin C helps the body naturally produce collagen, which is a key building block for shiny hair, supple skin, and strong nails. What better definition is there of #BeautyFromWithin!

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This experience was absolutely fantastic!! I was able to workout, relax, eat well, and learn all at one event! A HUGE THANKS to my friends at Swisse for treating me so well. To discover the full range of vitamins and supplements for your nutritional needs, click HERE!

Xo,

Mel

One Year Later film screening pics

It's been two weeks since the event and yes, I'm still on cloud 9 from the One Year Later film screening.  My photographer Tenneal McNair took so many amazing pics that I'll just share here.  I didn't want to flood your Instagram timelines.  Please scroll to get an idea of how incredible this evening was.

XO,

Mel

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The best host ever! My homie Dayo - @thearthype

 
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The love was sooo real.

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Director Joshua E. Peters dropping some knowledge - with a smile.

 
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My biggest supporters - my best friends Jessica and Malek Naz 

 
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One Year Later video DC screening recap!

The One Year Later video screening was held at Beyond Studios here in Washington, DC and the evening was magical!!  I just want to say Thank You to everyone who not only came to support but also those who just purchased a ticket in support of the film.  A portion of the proceeds were donated the Habitat For Humanity Hurricane Relief Fund and it warmed my heart to be able to pass along your contributions to help out all of the victims in the affected areas including my motherland, Puerto Rico.  

HUGE thanks to my videographer Pierre Edwards of Districtdodger.com for capturing all of these beautiful moments so perfectly.

I hope you enjoy!

XO,

Mel

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Celebrating with Toyota Latino! #LULAC16

The League of United Latin American Citizens’ (LULAC) Annual National Convention and Exposition is considered the nation’s premier Hispanic event.  More than 20,000 influencers from across the country, including top leaders from government, business, philanthropy and the Latino community attended. 

In addition, Toyota - the top auto brand among U.S. Hispanics returned as presenting sponsor of LULAC's 87th Annual National Convention and Exposition.  The highlight of Toyota’s participation was the 50th anniversary celebration of the Corolla, the top selling car among U.S. Hispanics.  

Did you know, one out of every four Corollas in the United States is sold to a Latino! To mark the occasion, Toyota brought the Corolla’s national birthday celebration- Recorriendo Historias.

 

All photos: Emma McAlary

As part of Toyota’s “Recorriendo Historias” celebration, conference attendees were able to share their favorite Corolla memories by sketching a picture on one of the canvas-wrapped Corollas, or by recording a short video at a booth.  Those who shared their drawings on social media with hashtag #VayamosJuntos and #Corolla50automatically were entered into a raffle for a chance to win either an Apple Watch, GoPro HERO4, Ipad Mini, or Polaroid Snap!

Thanks to ToyotaLatino for such an awesome experience at #LULAC16.  Had a blast! #VayamosJuntos

xo,

Mel

 

Cherry Blossoms - Washington, DC

Spring is truly my favorite time of the year.  Everyone starts to come out of hibernation, you can shed layers of clothing, and for me, it's the all about the beautiful flowers that start to bloom. Which is why I totally look forward to the Washington DC Cherry Blossom Festival every year.  It also reminds me of being in Japan where I lived for my last tour in the United States Navy.

Just a little bit of history, the famous trees were donated to Washington DC from Japan in 1912 in efforts to enhance the friendship between the two countries and to also celebrate the continued close relationship. 

Besides all of the fun events which include concerts, parades and even fireworks,  proper planning is definitely important in order to catch them at their peak bloom.  This year the festival runs from March 20th - April 17th.  You can find out more info here.

It is without a doubt worth experiencing!

xo,

Mel

 

Photos by: Malek Naz Freidouni

#iamlettingGO DC recap

Last week I held the #iamlettingGO video screening in DC at Eighteenth Street Lounge (ALL because of my friend Linda who made it happen) and the turnout was way more than I ever imagined.  I just want to say Thank You to everyone who not only came to support but who also shared their stories including Kristina who was so brave to "let go" on stage.  Each and every one of you have truly inspired me with your openness and watching you all connect because of your beautiful struggles.  Also, BIG thanks to Pierre Edwards of Districtdodger.com for capturing all of these beautiful moments so perfectly.

Enjoy!

Xo,

Mel

I was on Good Morning Washington!

I have been quite the busy one this year on social media - tons of photoshoots, filming videos, writing articles but this is the first time I was on national TV!  Crazy, right?  

I mean being on TV has always been a goal of mine (I did have it on my dream board) but I imagined my first experience being a little different.  I pictured myself behind the scenes and calling creative shots but I couldn't have thought of a more perfect time and topic to discuss that is near and dear to my heart.

The #iamlettingGO campaign has grown a life of it's own and I'm so grateful to have had the opportunity to share a little bit about it and promote my event that took place December 11th at Eighteenth Street Lounge.  A HUGE thanks to everyone who was able to attend and make it a huge success!

Catch the full interview HERE!

Xo,

Mel

#iamlettingGO DC EVENT

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After a successful (and sold out) event in NYC, there was NO WAY I wasn't going to have a screening here in DC!

So for some of you that are new to my blog, I created the “#IamlettingGO” campaign after a realization that so many people were going through life transitions. 

For the first week of the campaign, I shared on social media outlets what I was "letting GO" and encouraged my followers to do the same with the hashtag “#iamlettingGO.” More than 500 people have shared to date. 

Please join me as I will be unveiling the real reason why I cut my signature shoulder length curls in a heartfelt video at this event.  

** Screening will be followed by a Q&A session and attendees will be encouraged to share their transitions/beautiful struggles.  Be prepared for special guests and some surprises at Eighteenth Street Lounge.

Purchase your tickets HERE !

Can't wait to meet you all.

XO,

Mel

Dr. Martens X Rock Yo Rizos

Remember a couple of weeks ago I posted on Instagram a sneak peek of my collab with Dr. Martens?  

Here's why.  I was selected by SCDC Agency and Neuprofile as the ambassador for the iconic brand during Georgetown Blogger Crawl!  Ok, so I don't leave some of you wondering what #GTBloggerCrawl is all about - it's a day comprised of a group of local (DC, MD and VA) bloggers learning about the area and some of its top stores.  I must say I was super excited to work with Dr. Martens because not only do I loooove their boots but I wanted to know the history behind it.  While doing some research on the brand, here are some of the fun facts I discovered:

  • Inspired by a ski injury, Dr. Martens and his friend Dr. Funck invented an air-cushioned sole and were looking for investors.
  • In the late 1950, boot maker Bill Griggs was scrolling through an issue of Shoe and Leather News magazine to find the duo looking for overseas partners for their new air-cushioned sole.
  •  Griggs contacted Dr. Marten and the first boot was created on April 1, 1960.
  • Turning point for the brand and youth culture was when Peter Townshend of The Who wore the classic 1460 black boot on stage during a concert.  

For more info, click here

A huge thank you to the staff of Dr. Martens of Georgetown for the warm welcome and the lovely ladies of SDCD agency and Neuprofile for the wonderful opportunity with an American classic brand that has been around for over 50 years!

Xo,

Mel

 

My new Hogarth Pascal boots

With brand ambassador Jessica Hoy

How cute are these for the babies?!?!!

Ever wondered how these boots are made?  Check out this video!



#iamlettingGO NYC Video Screening Recap

I am reallllly excited to share these pictures with you from my #iamlettingGO video screening sponsored by Crème of Nature and Dark and Lovely at Pulse Karaoke Lounge located in the heart of NYC!!!!  

Ok so to bring you up to speed, if you don’t follow me on Instagram, I started a campaign called #iamlettingGO after the realization that so many people were going through life transitions.  It was a platform for people to share their beautiful struggles and anything they were letting go of in order to move forward with any aspirations they've given up on.  

Within a month, over 500 participated, shared and encouraged each other not to give up.  I was shocked at the response! So I felt it was only right to share my personal story (which I did through video) about my transition which included shaving off my signature shoulder length curls. But more than anything I wanted to meet everyone in person !

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The first 25 guests were gifted with full sized products from Crème of Nature’s Straight from Eden which is their new Natural Oil-Infused hair care line powered by coconut, avocado and olive oils all of which are essential for healthy hair.

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We also handed out tags to everyone and asked them to share something they were “letting go” of.  Keep scrolling and you’ll see why……

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My friend Monica Stevens of  Moknowshair.com

My friend Monica Stevens of Moknowshair.com

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The crowd and the energy was just magnificent!

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Celebrity hairstylist Mr. Johnny Wright

Celebrity hairstylist Mr. Johnny Wright

Everyone asked great questions!

Throughout the night, we gathered each guest’s tag that participated and attached them to balloons...

To let them all go into the beautiful New York City sky.

My friend Stephanie totally surprised me with her shirt.  How awesome!!

The curly haired blogger crew totally represented in full effect.

The LUCKY winner of the Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Basket!

KARAOKE TIME!!!! 

Some of you have asked where the video can be viewed.  Stay tuned for upcoming screenings at a city near you!

Xo,

Mel

 

All photos by Pete Monsanto of FlyLifeImages

Two Year Blog Anniversary Recap at STK

This celebration has been a long time coming.  I had always dreamed of having an event but I didn't have a clue where to start so I just kept putting it off.  It wasn't until I was on my way home on the metro and a girl approached me and said "I know you!  When are you having an event? DC naturals need to meet you in person."  I was so surprised and definitely taken back by her moxie but at that moment I knew it had to be done.  Jessica Hoy of Ink Blot Army worked her magic and totally made my vision come true and helped me plan the ENTIRE event down to the tasty coconut drinks by Coconut Cartel filled with Zacapa Rum.  

THANKS to STK DC for providing such a beautiful venue in such short notice.  And THANK YOU to all of the beautiful faces that came to celebrate with me.  I truly appreciate each and every one of you!

Xo,

Mel 

All Photos: Malek Naz Freidouni

Full sized products provided by  Amla Legend

Full sized products provided by Amla Legend

Jessica Hoy of Ink Blot Army

My beautiful little sister Cecilia

My boys came through to celebrate!

The dynamic duo- celebrity makeup artist Carl Ray and hairstylist Johnny Wright

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STK General Manager Ben Arndt

STK General Manager Ben Arndt

Kitiya King of  Mischo Beauty

Kitiya King of Mischo Beauty

My high school friend Lindsey Allen of  princesslinzzslair.com

My high school friend Lindsey Allen of princesslinzzslair.com

SuperCream By DevaCurl

SuperCream is finally available to purchase!!! This a new product that has been launched by DevaCurl and it's been a couple of years since their last product hit the market, so I knew it was special.

A few weeks ago, I attended the DevaCurl SuperCream Product Testing Event where a group of fellow bloggers and vloggers sampled the product before its official launch and boy, it was a blast! There was a  delicious spread of food and drinks (a priority for someone who is always hungry) and we were given our own hair stations with a sample of the product and hair tools to create whatever style we wanted.  I decided to apply SuperCream to my hair dry- specifically my dry ends on the right side and compared it with my left side (sorry, I don't have before & after pics).  I have noticed since I colored my hair from blonde back to brown, my hair really lacks moisture and shine.  The texture of my hair after I used the product was so soft, had noticeable shine, and it also smelled delicious.  It would normally take me two or three products combined to achieve what I did with a little bit of SuperCream.  It will definitely be a staple in my wash and go routine!  

Check out some of the great moments captured that day.  

You're in luck! DevaCurl is going to be giving away tons of SuperCream to consumers. 

You can win a bottle of Super Cream from DevaCurl! To enter, head to @mydevacurl, give them a follow on Instagram, and repost the SuperCream image on your account. Be sure you leave a comment about why you love being #supercurly! They will be choosing people with the random number generator all week, and giving away, full size Super Cream prizes.

Good luck!

Xo,

Mel

Dark and Lovely and Everyday People team up in NYC

Dark and Lovely® Au Naturale and Everyday People teamed up at New York City hotspot The DL to host the hottest Style Suite and brunch.

In their exclusive Style Suite, Dark and Lovely® celebrated its breakthrough Au Naturale Anti-Shrinkage and Au Naturale Anti-Breakage lines: a range of treatment and styling products designed to address the unique needs of naturally curly hair textures. Guests gathered tips and tricks on caring for gorgeous natural curls from SoftSheen-Carson Director of Education Mezei Jefferson as beautiful models showed off some amazing styles. Attendees were also treated to one-on-one hair consultations from the Dark and Lovely Style Squad, sipped on a signature "Hey Honey" cocktail, rocked to tunes from DJ Rich Knight, and mingled with Everyday People hosts Chef Roblé, Saada and DJ Moma and other notable attendees!

WHO:

Chef Roblé (Celebrity chef and member of the Everyday People crew)

Saada Ahmed (Everyday People crew)

Geneva S. Thomas (star of BRAVO's Blood, Sweat and Heels)

Amanda Seales (comedian, host and DJ)

Chrissy Lampkin (stylist, fashion designer and reality TV personality)

Olivia (R&B singer and reality TV personality)

Cappie Pondexter (WNBA basketball player for the New York Liberty)

Les Nubians (R&B Grammy-nominated musical duo)

Wakeema Hollis (Au Naturale model)

DJ Moma (One of NYC's hottest DJ’s and member of the Everyday People crew)

DJ Rich Knight (One of NYC's hottest DJ’s)

Johnny Wright (SoftSheen-Carson Artistic Style Director and celebrity stylist)

Mezei Jefferson (Softsheen-Carson Director of Education)

 

Photos by: Pete Monsanto of Flylife Images/Dark and Lovely

Chrissy Lampkin

Chrissy Lampkin

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Les Nubians

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The Dark and Lovely Au Naturale collections are now available in mass, drug and beauty supply stores nationwide for $9.99 each. 

SOCIAL MEDIA:

Instagram: @official_darkandlovely

Twitter: @darkandlovely

Facebook: Facebook.com/darkandlovely

YouTube: YouTube.com/Softsheen-Carson #AuNaturaleEveryday

District Closets Recap

I was really happy to be a part of District Closets shopping event at Secondi.   Guests were able to shop the personal closets of some of DC's fellow top style bloggers and exclusive Secondi picks.  It was great to mix and mingle with everyone, even the store owner.  Check it out!

(l to r) : Style Smiths, A Loyal Love, My Fair Vanity, The Fashionably Broke  Not Pictured: Anchyi @ work

(l to r) : Style Smiths, A Loyal Love, My Fair Vanity, The Fashionably Broke

Not Pictured: Anchyi @ work

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With Anchyi @ work

Secondi owner Caitrine Callison

Secondi owner Caitrine Callison

Photos by: Vaughn Dabney and Johnica Reed

 

Dress and blazer: lucky find from a street market in Japan (it was $3)

Shoes: Zara