‘Insecure’ Star Yvonne Orji Partners with Colgate on New Campaign

Yvonne Orji, co-star of HBO’s hit series “Insecure,” has something to smile about.

The Nigerian born multi-talented comedic actress and bestie in our head has teamed up with Colgate, the iconic toothpaste brand for a new campaign that celebrates being ready for opportunities and life’s unexpected moments.

And there are plenty of prospects on Orji’s horizon.

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Not only is she currently filming the third season of the highly-anticipated HBO series, she’s also writing and executive producing her own sitcom, as well as her role in an upcoming comedy film set to be released in the fall.

Orji is ready for her close-up and she’s kicking things off with the Totally Ready ® campaign, which informs consumers that with their whole mouth health—healthy gums, teeth, cheeks and tongue—they are Totally Ready ® for whatever life brings them. In the candid video, Orji reveals how she gets ready for Valentine’s Day. In the clip, Orji chats about confidence, her pearly whites being her best asset and how she’s still waiting for Mr. Right.

With her undeniably gorgeous smile and effervescent personality, this partnership seems like a match made in heaven.

“I am so excited about this partnership with Colgate Total,” Orji said in a release. “A healthy smile has always been important to me. My healthy smile makes me feel good and, when I feel good, I feel totally ready for whatever comes my way. Last year was a really good year for me. I want to take that and make it bigger and better for 2018. So, not only do I need to be totally ready, I know that I must stay ready.”

We can’t wait to see what’s in store for our girl Yvonne!

What are you most excited to see from her this year? Her role as “Molly” on “Insecure,” or some of her upcoming projects? Share your thoughts in the comments. 

7 Last-Minute Gifts for the Beauty Buffs on Your List

Oops, you’ve done it again. You’ve waited until the last minute to score gifts for some of the VIPs on your Christmas list.

Whether it’s your sister, BFF, cousin or college-bound niece, gifting her with stocking stuffers to keep her looking and feeling good is always a sure bet. However, with Christmas only four days away, you have to act fast.

Thankfully, I’ve found some of the best beauty buys that will make them think you’ve been planning these perfect pampering presents all year long.

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Kleenex Very Merry Christmas Cleansing Collection
Who doesn’t want clean and clear skin? Gift your makeup-loving bestie with this cleansing stash to keep her skin refreshed. Available here, $25.

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Sally Hansen Salon Chrome Holographic Kit 
Give your nail-obsessed niece this kit to keep her digits dazzling and she’ll thank you for days to come. Available here, $13

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It Cosmetics Superhero Mascara Ornament 
There’s mascara and then there’s Superhero mascara. This volumizing eyelash enhancer lives up to its name by rescuing dull, short lashes and transforming them into long, look-at-me lashes. Available here, $12.

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Soap & Glory Box of Delights 
This delightful box of sudsy goodies will make your sister feel so fresh and so clean. Available here, $19

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Makeup Academy Mattifying Balm 
Trust us, this holiday season your sis will want to leave all things shiny to the Christmas trees and eye-catching wrapping paper. Make sure her skin stays on point and shine-free with this pigment-free mattifying balm. Available here, $11.

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Vaseline Lip Therapy Rosy Lips 
Chapped lips are never a good look. Give your cousin this super cute tin to keep her kisser supple and moisturized. Available here, $3.

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SheaMoisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Shine Holiday Hair Collection 
This sweet-smelling haircare set will guarantee your girl’s curls are popping for New Year’s Eve party-hopping. Available here, $15.

Have you finished all of your Christmas shopping?

Baby Dove GIVEAWAY + Tips for Keeping Babies’ Skin in Tip-Top Shape this Winter

The official start of winter is a few days away, but falling temps make it feel like we’re already in the deep freeze.

That’s why it’s important to protect and take care of our skin—especially the delicate skin of our little ones.

When I was a first-time mom, I remember being terrified of exposing my daughter to the frigid air and brutal winds. Her already dry skin would turn bright red the minute we stepped outside and the moisture would zap immediately—leaving behind cracked, ashy skin.

In addition to bundling your bundles of joy with layers of outwear, protecting their precious skin underneath is the key to healthy, hydrated skin.

I recently caught up with Dr. Tanya Altmann, a California-based pediatrician and Baby Dove partner who offered tips on how to keep our babies’ skin healthy all season long.

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Q: How can you best prepare your baby’s skin care routine for the colder weather?
Dr. Altmann: Cold, dry winter weather often causes dry, chapped, irritated cheeks. Cleansing with a mild wash helps prevent dryness and protects skin’s natural barrier and locks in moisture. In addition, apply a mild lotion to baby cheeks regularly, or as frequently as needed to prevent chapping.

Q: If you notice a rash on your baby’s skin, what’s best practice to figure out what it is and how to treat it?
Dr. Altmann: If you find your baby’s bottom becoming red or irritated, wash your baby’s bottom each night with a sensitive, mild moisturizing baby wash and let it air dry. Consult your pediatrician about using a diaper rash cream for a few days if the redness and irritation continues and if it worsens, see the doctor in person.

Q: What baby skin issues do you see most often flare up during the colder months of the year?
Dr. Altmann: Chapped skin, especially dry chapped cheeks.  In addition, any skin issues like eczema that anyone has can often be worse when the skin gets dried out during cold winter months due to indoor heaters and dry air.

Q: Are their issues more prevalent in babies with darker skin tones?
Dr. Altmann: Darker skin tends to show more irritation and scaring from itching, rashes, cuts and scrapes compared to lighter skin. It is also common for darker skin to lose hydration more quickly. Ensuring skin is hydrated is extremely important. Use a cleanser with ¼ cup moisturizing cream, such as Baby Dove Rich Moisture Tip to Toe Wash. This formula helps to repair the skins natural barrier for added protection. To lock-in moisture, apply Baby Dove Rich Moisture Lotion after bathing as well

Q: Are there fabrics you should avoid with babies?
Dr. Altmann: Avoid rough, non-breathable fabrics.  Dress baby in layers to avoid overheating and sweating when going indoors with heat.

How do you keep your baby’s skin in tip-top shape during the cold winter months? 

GIVEAWAY: Would you like to try Baby Dove? If so, leave a comment or Tweet me @BrownGirlGumbo telling me how you plan to keep your baby’s skin healthy this season and you’ll win a Baby Dove collection. One lucky winner will be randomly selected and notified via email by December 20, 2017. This contest is only open to U.S. residents. 

BGG’s Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide 2017

With Christmas less than a month away, it’s time to put your holiday shopping into overdrive.

Still struggling to find the perfect gift for the loved ones on your list? Don’t panic, BGG’s got you covered. From personalized presents to must-have toys, we’ve rounded up the gifts that will make your friends and family shriek with delight.

Try not to keep most of them for yourself!

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IT Cosmetics It Girl Palette
With beautiful packaging and even better quality, your beauty-obsessed BFF will never want to use another brush set again. Available here, $50.

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Personalized Yankee Candle Jar
Want to instantly light up grandma’s face? Give her one of these personalized candles with a family photo—it’s guaranteed to warm her heart and make her home smell scentsational. Available here, prices start at $12.

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The Wisdom of Sundays: Life-Changing Insights from Super Soul Conversations by Oprah Winfrey
What we know for sure is that Auntie O knows her stuff. Give yourself the gift of wisdom with this book of gems. Available here, $25

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I Need A Baker Sweatshirt
This cozy sweatshirt will make you feel good as ’80s & ’90s R&B. Gift this to the girl in your squad who can’t get enough old school music. Available here, $54

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Disney Pixar Coco Spanish Edition Remember Me Game
Get your little cousins off their gadgets and into this family-friendly game. Similar to bingo, this traditional Loteria game features some of the character’s from Disney Pixar’s new animated film, “Coco,” where each player has a chance at luck. Bring on the fun! Available here, $15

 

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Google Home Mini
Know someone who needs a virtual assistant? Look no further than a smart speaker from the brand who’s been our online answer genie for nearly two decades. Available here, $30

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Bevel Shave System Starter
Guys have fully embraced the scruff and lucky for us ladies, the beard gang isn’t going away anytime soon. Keep your guy’s fuzz groomed with this ultra-luxe starter set. Bonus: It’s black-owned. Available here, $72.

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The Body Shop Strawberry Ultimate Collection
Treat your suds-loving sister to this sweet strawberry set. With a wide range of products included, she’ll be set and smelling good all season long. Available here, $50

The Chicago Tribune Book of the Chicago Cubs: A Decade-by-Decade History

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Score a home-run for the sports fan in your family with this historical, photo-rich tome celebrating one of baseball’s most beloved teams. Available here, $25

 

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Ikuzi Dolls
Not pleased with the doll selections at your local toy store? Ikuzi Dolls to the rescue! These beautiful dolls showcase realistic facial features, hair textures and skin tones celebrating the wide range of BG shades. Your mini-me will beam with pride. Available here, $80.

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Moleskine Rolling Stones Limited Edition Pink Notebook
Take note, music lovers! This eye-catching notebook celebrates one of the world’s most influential bands. The smooth pink fabric cover makes it a standout and the perfect place to jot down lyrics or love notes. Available here, $25

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Gerber Collection 
Celebrating a new addition to the family? The proud parents on your list will appreciate the quintessential baby getup gift: the onesie. A baby can never have too many. Gerber’s sets will outfit your cuddliest family member in style. Available here, $7.

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Love OPI XOXO Holiday 4pc Set
Nail your niece’s wish list with this eye-catching collection of holiday-inspired polishes. From sultry hues to metallic, she’s sure to find something fitting to keep her fingers fab and flawless. Available here, $15.

 

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Sunbeam Renue Neck Wrap
Your hubby will thank you for this thoughtful gift of healing. Sunbeam’s neck wrap will soothe his achy neck and shoulders while providing a relaxing, comfortable fit. Available here, $50.

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Guess Women’s Gold-Tone Stainless Steel Bracelet Watch
Nothing is as timeless as a watch. Sure, our phones may be able to tell us the time, but a classic gold watch will always make a statement. Available here, $125

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Paw Patrol Sea Patroller
Got a Paw Patrol fan in your home? With flashing lights and a removable anchor, this cool and coloful vessel will make him yelp with glee! Available here, $50

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Sugarfina Candy Trunk
The candy lover in your life will flip for this chic trunk filled with gourmet goodies from around the globe. Available here, $195.

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The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show
Making memories with your child is always high on most parents’ lists. What better way to create a lasting impression than the gift of theater? Treat your tot to a performance of “The Very Hungry Caterpillar,” based on the classic children’s book of the same name for a fun afternoon in the City at DR2. The experience will stay etched in your mind for years to come. Click here for ticket information.

What are you the most excited about this holiday season?

CVS Pharmacy Removing All Sunscreen Lower Than SPF 15

Summer is almost here, which means even more time to spend out in the sun. Sure, Vitamin D is a good thing, but soaking up rays without the right protection is a no-go.

That’s why CVS Pharmacy’s new Long Live Skin campaign is aiming to increase awareness around skin health and the importance of proper skincare. We brown girls have to do away with the notion that our melanin is enough to safeguard us from harmful UV rays because it’s not. In fact, melanoma tends to be more deadly for us African-Americans according to a July 2016 study in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. While the incidence of melanoma is higher in our Caucasian counterparts, we tend to get diagnosed in its later stages leading to the lowest overall survival rate.

That’s why I’m so impressed that CVS Pharmacy is the only national retailer to remove all sun care products with SPF lower than 15 from shelves and has added more than 30 new SPF+/broad spectrum products to sun care sets that either meet or exceed FDA standards. That’s a commendable step in providing consumers with the best information so that they make smart, informed purchases. Plus, the Skin Care Foundation has certified CVS Health brand SPF products with a Seal of Recommendation.

So, go ahead, have fun in the sun, but be sure to spray or lather on the sunscreen!

Below, check out some of CVS Pharmacy’s SPF offerings:

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Aveeno Active Naturals Protect + Hydrate Sunscreen available here, $11.80

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Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen available here, $10

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CVS Pharmacy Kids Clear Sunscreen Spray available here, $9.50

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Promise Organic SPF 30 Coconut Sunscreen Stick available here, $10

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CVS Broad Spectrum Sunscreen Lotion available here, $8.50

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CVS Beach Guard Clear Spray available here, $10

Do you use sunscreen every day? Do you have any fun for the Memorial Day holiday weekend? 

Jane Iredale Launches New Skincare Supplements

Last week, I had the pleasure of celebrating my 37th birthday at a swanky Manhattan hotel.

I was beyond thrilled to start my special day on a foliage-trimmed terrace overflowing with beautiful spring blooms and sunshine gloriously beaming through the glass-enclosed ceiling.

However, the lovely setting wasn’t reserved for me, but for one of my favorite makeup brands: jane iredale.

The premier mineral-based cosmetics line hosted a super chic garden party at the gorgeous Gramercy Park Hotel to showcase its upcoming offerings including five new skincare supplements launching this summer. Each of the supplements promises to treat common skin issues such as: excess oil, aging, dryness, and acne. In addition to highlighting the new products, the event also included a Q&A with founder/CEO Jane Iredale, live demos, and a generous shopping experience for us bloggers and editors.

Being surrounded by nature in the lush space served as the perfect backdrop to launch the natural beauty products developed for a radiant, healthy glow. While I haven’t tried the supplements just yet, I did pick out a cream blush called “Charisma” that has now secured a spot in my springtime beauty routine. The sheer berry hue gives just the right amount of flush to my cheeks, ideal for spring. Plus, unlike powder blushes – a brush isn’t required, which makes for easy on-the-go application. It’s become an instant-fave.

I’ve been using jane iredale products for nearly a decade now. In fact, it was one of the very first brands I partnered with when I launched my blog ten years ago. The quality is unmatched and the range of products for us BGs is outstanding. If you’re looking for makeup that is created to enhance, not mask skin, definitely give jane iredale a try—you won’t be disappointed.

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What are your favorite springtime beauty products? Have you ever tried a skincare/beauty supplement? 

Unilever Fools Beauty Lovers in Epic Campaign Prank

Throughout the years, I’ve witnessed some pretty clever hair and beauty campaigns, but none quite as clever as what the folks at Unilver pulled off yesterday.

Bloggers and editors were invited to an exclusive first-look at a new hair care brand, Evaus, claiming to bring “prestige” beauty and share-worthy strands to the masses. As a BG with natural hair, I was excited to find out what this new line would offer for those of us with curls, kinks and coils.

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Held at one of my favorite hotels in the city, the Crosby Street Hotel—the chic, yet quirky event space was the perfect backdrop for the sleek, minimalistic packaging. Evaus’ modern aesthetic seemed ideal for millennial consumers who seek all-things cool.

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After taking a whiff from one of the bottles, I was sold! I instantly fell in love with the delightful scent of the sweet, citrusy fruits that wafted from the container. Finally pulling myself away from the display samples, I along with the rest of those in attendance were whisked to a screening room where we were shown a video—but it wasn’t what many of us were expecting.

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The clip showcased several bloggers and influencers gushing over Evaus and how its products had transformed their hair. From women with pin-straight hair to cropped natural ‘dos, all were impressed with how this new line made their hair look and feel. However, as the video progressed, it was revealed that “Evaus,” wasn’t a new innovative, high-end brand. In fact, it was a brand they were all familiar with all along.

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Shockingly, we learned that “Evaus” was actually SUAVE (spelled backwards)! The popular drugstore hair care brand had gone undercover to prove the incredible power of label bias. The geniuses at Unilever wanted to drive home the point that price and labels do not have to be indicative of quality. Research shows that 7 in 10 women feel that premium or higher-priced brands and products are more trustworthy than value or lower-priced brands and products, which just isn’t true.

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Suave Honey Infusion Collection is available at drugstores nationwide.

I’ve personally always loved Suave as a brand (drugstore beauty/hair care shopper here!) so I am not surprised by the results the bloggers received after using the brand.

This fun and super creative campaign is one of the most memorable activations I’ve ever seen. I’m proud to say that I’m a #SuaveBeliever!

Watch the brilliant video here:

Are you a victim of judging a product’s quality by its price? Do you use Suave? If so, what’s your favorite product and why?