Review

CIII: Pattern Beauty: What's In The Box?

Tracee Ellis Ross…

Let’s just stop there because, A M A Z I N G! I have been an absolute fan of Tracee Ellis Ross since her younger days on The CW’s Girlfriends.

I admire her as a woman. She knows how to keep the personal, personal and the business, business. She’s all about empowering women and the youth. And, her hair has remained amazing throughout this whole ride. She hasn’t let ANYONE process her hair in ways that SHE didn’t agree with. And, she hasn’t let society define what beauty means in terms of her hair, body, clothing, etc.

SO,

When a queen as described above drops a haircare line and calls it Pattern Beauty, YOU BUY THE DELUXE PACKAGE!

UNBOXING!

This is the box that my products came in. It’s pretty standard with “Pattern” written across yellow tape.  Inside, there was protective packaging so that the products didn’t have the free rein to swish around and break or spill.

This is the box that my products came in. It’s pretty standard with “Pattern” written across yellow tape.

Inside, there was protective packaging so that the products didn’t have the free rein to swish around and break or spill.

The products were wrapped in yellow tissue paper with a white sticker that read “JUICY & JOYFUL”.  All of the products were inside of the paper as pictured above.

The products were wrapped in yellow tissue paper with a white sticker that read “JUICY & JOYFUL”.

All of the products were inside of the paper as pictured above.

If you take a look at the packaging of each product, however, you see the faces of women (or men) and their coils! In all of them, you get half of the face so that you can imagine yourself and your coils on the other half!

The yellow, black and white is simply perfect to me! This may be because Let’s Be Breef colors are yellow, back, and white, or it could be because these colors simply GO TOGETHER! No telling either way, but, I do know that the packaging is simple and beautiful even down to the matte feel of the shampoo and conditioner tubes.

I simply love the packaging. I can’t say enough about it!

THE PRODUCTS

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The Deluxe Bundle for coilies, curlies and tight textures includes:

  1. Hydration Shampoo (9.8 Fl Oz)

  2. Heavy Conditioner (13 Fl Oz)

  3. Leave-In Conditioner (9.8 Fl Oz)

  4. Jojoba Oil Hair Serum (3.9 Fl Oz)

  5. Shower Brush

  6. Microfiber Towel

  7. Hair Clip

I: HYDRATION SHAMPOO   This product is great for curlies, coilies, and tight textures and provides a nourishing cleanse.  It states that it is “creamy, luxurious & boosted with a blend of glorious oils to help cleanse your hair and scalp while removing buildup”. It does all of these things and more all while managing to NOT strip away your moisture.   II: MICROFIBER TOWEL   This product is SO important. Many of us don’t know how damaging a normal bath towel can be for our hair (depending on the texture), so including a microfiber towel with the bundle was, in my opinion, like including a silk bonnet in a nighttime face mask bundle! It’s a match made in heaven.  Now, a lot of people still don’t or won’t like microfiber towels and would just prefer the texture of a t-shirt to protect, but I’m going to try this towel out and let you know my feelings on it!

I: HYDRATION SHAMPOO

This product is great for curlies, coilies, and tight textures and provides a nourishing cleanse.

It states that it is “creamy, luxurious & boosted with a blend of glorious oils to help cleanse your hair and scalp while removing buildup”. It does all of these things and more all while managing to NOT strip away your moisture.

II: MICROFIBER TOWEL

This product is SO important. Many of us don’t know how damaging a normal bath towel can be for our hair (depending on the texture), so including a microfiber towel with the bundle was, in my opinion, like including a silk bonnet in a nighttime face mask bundle! It’s a match made in heaven.

Now, a lot of people still don’t or won’t like microfiber towels and would just prefer the texture of a t-shirt to protect, but I’m going to try this towel out and let you know my feelings on it!

I: HEAVY CONDITIONER FOR COILIES   Now, I looked at this conditioner and was shocked at how THICK this product is. When you have thicker and coilier hair, you have to battle it a little bit more with bigger and thicker products which are sometimes hard to find.  After a hard search, I’ve narrowed the conditioners that I can use for my type 4 hair down to Aussie’s 3-Minute Miracle with Jojoba oil and Texture ID.  BUT, in just looking at this product, I can tell that it may just be a game-changer that I will have to add to my list of “Must Haves”.  I definitely cannot wait to try this one.   II: LEAVE-IN CONDITIONER   The Leave-In Conditioner is thick also, but I don’t think that it is as thick as the heavy conditioner. This is a good thing, however, because a lot of us will need something a little lighter as a leave-in so that we can actually style our hair for the week.  So, I’m excited to see if this is either too light, too heavy, or just right as a product for me.  The product claims, however, to be a “refreshing and restoring hair pick me up”. This product was made to help lock in moisture after cleansing and for styling. I cannot wait to see how it smells, feels and lasts.  [I’m curious about the smell because it is a mixture of rose, citrus and patchouli, who wouldn’t want to know how that will come out!?]

I: HEAVY CONDITIONER FOR COILIES

Now, I looked at this conditioner and was shocked at how THICK this product is. When you have thicker and coilier hair, you have to battle it a little bit more with bigger and thicker products which are sometimes hard to find.

After a hard search, I’ve narrowed the conditioners that I can use for my type 4 hair down to Aussie’s 3-Minute Miracle with Jojoba oil and Texture ID.

BUT, in just looking at this product, I can tell that it may just be a game-changer that I will have to add to my list of “Must Haves”.

I definitely cannot wait to try this one.

II: LEAVE-IN CONDITIONER

The Leave-In Conditioner is thick also, but I don’t think that it is as thick as the heavy conditioner. This is a good thing, however, because a lot of us will need something a little lighter as a leave-in so that we can actually style our hair for the week.

So, I’m excited to see if this is either too light, too heavy, or just right as a product for me.

The product claims, however, to be a “refreshing and restoring hair pick me up”. This product was made to help lock in moisture after cleansing and for styling. I cannot wait to see how it smells, feels and lasts.

[I’m curious about the smell because it is a mixture of rose, citrus and patchouli, who wouldn’t want to know how that will come out!?]

I: JOJOBA OIL HAIR SERUM   Now THIS OIL is shocking! It’s one of the products that I couldn’t wait until the “Try On” to actually try, so I opened it and tested it out during the unboxing.  In just looking at the ingredients list, you can see that this product is largely different from those that you’ll find on the market. It has ACTUAL NATURAL ingredients (like all of the products in this line) and extracts from seeds that you can literally smell during use. This isn’t to say that ALL of the ingredients are great, but we’ll dive more into that in our next Pattern Beauty post.   The smell of these products is a big part of the  Pattern Beauty  experience from what I’ve seen thus far, and in my opinion, the products smell quite heavenly.   II: SHOWER BRUSH   For gentle shower detangling…  Now, I’m going to stop them right there because I don’t know a type 4 natural, let alone a 4c natural who can honestly detangle their hair from root to tip while being in the shower, with a tool. Who has the arm strength for that? Who has the patience for that?  I usually have to condition and detangle while sectioning off my hair prior to showering and washing, otherwise I would just be a matted up mess. But, I’m actually going to give this product a try and attempt to detangle while in the shower as it suggests to see if it works.   III: HAIR CLIP   I think it’s adorable that  Tracee Ellis Ross  included a hair clip in this bundle because hair accessories are necessary!  This will come in handy the most while sectioning off my hair and detangling.

I: JOJOBA OIL HAIR SERUM

Now THIS OIL is shocking! It’s one of the products that I couldn’t wait until the “Try On” to actually try, so I opened it and tested it out during the unboxing.

In just looking at the ingredients list, you can see that this product is largely different from those that you’ll find on the market. It has ACTUAL NATURAL ingredients (like all of the products in this line) and extracts from seeds that you can literally smell during use. This isn’t to say that ALL of the ingredients are great, but we’ll dive more into that in our next Pattern Beauty post.

The smell of these products is a big part of the Pattern Beauty experience from what I’ve seen thus far, and in my opinion, the products smell quite heavenly.

II: SHOWER BRUSH

For gentle shower detangling…

Now, I’m going to stop them right there because I don’t know a type 4 natural, let alone a 4c natural who can honestly detangle their hair from root to tip while being in the shower, with a tool. Who has the arm strength for that? Who has the patience for that?

I usually have to condition and detangle while sectioning off my hair prior to showering and washing, otherwise I would just be a matted up mess. But, I’m actually going to give this product a try and attempt to detangle while in the shower as it suggests to see if it works.

III: HAIR CLIP

I think it’s adorable that Tracee Ellis Ross included a hair clip in this bundle because hair accessories are necessary!

This will come in handy the most while sectioning off my hair and detangling.


I’M SUPER EXCITED TO LATHER THIS LINE ALL OVER MY HAIR!

I can’t at the moment because I am rocking a protective style (we all know how that goes), but wash day is always near, so I’ll be back to let you all know how my hair reacts to this line.

I have a feeling that my hair will simply love it! ➿

LIII: Colourpop No Filter Foundation Stix

I struggle with foundations. I struggle to find the perfect shade for my warm dark skin. I struggle to find the perfect formula for my combination (oily and dry) skin.

Colourpop recently released foundation sticks which are the perfect medium between a liquid foundation and a pressed powder. It’s literally a cream foundation in stick form, for those who do not yet use them.

I’m fond of foundation sticks and I normally use either Smashbox or Anastasia Beverly Hills. I am, however, very open to new brands that can better service my color-matching needs.

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The Question Is, Do They Meet My Color-Matching Needs?

Nope!

I have, once again, been let down by the make-up industry and their “many foundation color options”. Again, the amount of brands that brag about all of the colors and shades of foundation that they have compared to the number of African-American women like me who struggle to find a color that doesn’t make us look crazy… 🙄

Maybe my skin tone is not one that comes with a perfect match foundation. I mean, honestly, my skin doesn’t need foundation anyway. I have beautiful skin! But, I do want the option to wear it, so help me out brands! Help me out.

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Left: Deep Dark 197 W

Right: Deep Dark 213 N

Excuse my nails and grubby fingers, nobody’s perfect. 😹

 
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Look at this deception!

It looks like these would be perfect right? One for an all-over foundation and the other for a cool soft contour.

BUT, the color of the inside of our forearm is NOT the color of your face. Of course it won’t work!

Now, this isn’t a complete Hateogram to the whole Colourpop No Filter Foundation Stix line (because Colourpop is over there working pure magic with their products), it’s just me acknowledging and slightly complaining about the fact that, if and when I want to wear make-up, I’ll still be grabbing and blending two foundations to get that base going!

And let’s not even get into bronzers! 🙄

XXXII: Can I Break It Down For You? #EverythingIsLove

There is so much to unpack from this beautiful album. The more you know (about Beyonce, Jay-Z, history, etc.), the more you catch. But, what I like about this work of art is that you can know nothing at all and still just enjoy the songs and vibe to the melodies. 

However, if your "Woke Meter" is on Crissle, then you're catching every reference and your cracking up with Beezus and Jova! I'm only catching a few of the references and getting help from others with the others, but what I do catch gives me life, so I'm sharing the life with you! A lot of this will sound repetitive because it is so hard for me to find words that are perfect enough to describe this album, but bear with me as I try. 

Let's unpack:

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APESHIT

So, occasionally Beyoncé has to remind y'all that she knows who she is. This is that reminder. Also, I cannot move on without mentioning that they shot a flawlessly BLACK video in Le Louvre in Paris! Now, the artistic significance of the paintings to the meaning of the words, I didn't catch. But, how beautiful was the video? There were beautiful Black people dancing in the Louvre. There were beautiful Black people doing hair in the Louvre (with a pick)! History was made that day, in the Louvre, and I see it as nothing but beauty. 

Also, she raps better than 89% of the rappers that are out today. What category can she not take? I don't think said category exists! They are all hers. 

However, what's important to know about this song is the fact that Beyoncé knows the type of work she's putting out, she knows that people are going crazy for it. So, "put some respeck on [her] check" and continue to empty your pockets for her!

Sorry to bounce around, but who else was shocked to hear the Migos on this album? I know that I was shocked, not that I actually know who they are, but it was exciting to look into the people that Bey and Jay allowed on this project. It helped create a sound that, I'm sure, many of us weren't expecting. 

One more thing: I cannot ignore the fact that The Carters want y'all to know that they DO NOT care about this "fame" thang! It's so great to see because fame and likes are all people live for these days! I love seeing them kill it without a care.

Your fav simply could never. 

SUMMER

I love the vocals by Beyoncé on this song. Her voice just sounds like bacon-wrapped perfection, but beyond that, the message is adorable. 

I think that Damien Marley's outro on this song tells us listeners everything that we need to know about where Beyoncé and Jay-Z are in their relationship. They are connecting with each other, away from all of the noise of publicity. They've found peace and in their peace, rekindled their love and strengthened their connection with each other and it's very noticeable. I love it when the music or the artistry shows all of the work that's being put in behind the scenes -- whether that's the work of Bey & Jay in fixing their relationship, or the work that it took to create the album. You can just see the work. 

The lyrics, however... Bey & Jay just being and existing together is what they're talking about here. It seems so raw and so personal--this space that they've entered into. 

As someone who is so into connections, I enjoy listening to these songs and I enjoy watching their chemistry on stage because it shows their connection with each other. They are fun together, they laugh together, they've cried together, and to me that's worth more than being with someone. They just get the best of both worlds. 

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Love is Universal.
Love is going to express itself as a form of forgiveness and compassion for each other.
— Damien Marley

LoveHappy

"Y'all could make up with a bag, I had to change the weather." 

Love this joint! We get to hear about genuine, real, and happy love. I think that it's amazing. The music is music and, like some believe, it could be for complete entertainment purposes and nothing more, but I really believe in this process because I've lived it.

Now, I didn't live the mature man realizing his wrongs, getting the help that he needs by talking it out with a therapist, and then actually changing. I lived the part where I figured out that I was worth (1) a man that knows what he has from the beginning, that cherishes what we have and is my biggest fan; or, (2) a man that will take the necessary steps to change after whatever it is that tears us apart in the first place. These are the realizations that allow you to leave a situation no matter how comfortable, no matter how public, and no matter what the public perception will be of you leaving. Beyoncé really left Jay-Z. She was ready and willing to let her man go because he forgot, however temporarily, how to be her man. A lot of girls/women will not do this out of fear of being alone, or fear of how this will look. I commend every woman who values herself enough to walk away at least until a change is genuinely made.

And, speaking of, a lot of the Beyhive has just been ready to write Jay-Z off (or worse), but Bey and Jay had a connection (to them) that ended up being worth the work that it would take to rekindle what they had and to fix what was wronged. Some relationships are worth this, and, although I see girls forgiving guys that could care less about them and continue to blatantly lie because they know that they'll be forgiven, that wasn't the case here. Jay immediately acknowledged that he was wrong and began to take the steps. He even asked for the Hive's forgiveness in this album, so I'm no longer a Hive member that will roll my eyes at him when I see him in concert. 

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You can't have a Beyoncé ANYTHING without hearing about home, Houston! I just love how Houston she is. 

This song is a story. It's Jay-Z telling the short version of them getting together, breaking up, and getting back together. Jay-Z is at a point where he's able to admit that he messed up. He's able to be open with Bey about it and listeners about it, and he's able to admit that he was dead wrong. He goes on to tell a bit about what he had to go through to get her back and thanks women for all that they do. 

The question always remains, 'but why do y'all have to put us through these things just to see how great we are', but I guess that's just become the reality of relationships (???... Help me out, I don't date). 

 

 

BOSS

"We measure success by how many people successful next to you..." 

This song, to me, is testament to the hard work that Beyoncé and (I guess) Jay-Z put in on the regular. They are able to chill and make millions with their toes in the sand because of the fact that their grind does not shut off! She let us know that her great, great grandchil'ren are already rich and they aren't even born yet! She KNOWS! We see her working the day after she comes off of tour! Those braids come back and her laptop is at the ready -- her grind does not stop. You cannot knock a hustle like theirs. 

In this song both Bey and Jay address misconceptions like, people thinking that they don't have real-world problems, as well as the thought that you can't stand next to someone and also be as good as them or surpass them (Jay addressing the fact that people won't even work with him because they're busy wanting to be better than him).

Friends

This is my favorite song, hands down. 

We rarely hear Beyoncé go in depth about her friendships. We hear that her people are poppin' and that she's poppin', but rarely do we get the "I need my friends", "I love my life" vibes that we get from this song, so, now that we're getting it, I LIVE for it!

Surprisingly, one of my favorite parts of this song is Jay-Z's part. I love when he mentions everyone allowed at his house. Throughout this song, both Bey and Jay tell the listeners how small their circles are with no plans of it getting bigger. Jay addresses selfish "friends" like Kanye who is still butthurt about how it looks that he didn't attend his wedding all while Jay and Bey were beefin'. Jay has to let him know that a real friend would understand that he's not going anywhere when he and his wife aren't right! You shouldn't have to tell real friends certain things. The idea is that they would know, but let's be real, no one knows how to be a real friend these days!

My other favorite part is the end. Beyoncé's lines at the end hit home for me:

"Your friends are faux, My friends are goals
Closer than kin, Our souls exposed
Your friends are frauds, All they want is applause, Yeah
And my friends, real friends, Closer than kin"

This hit home for me because, if you've read previous posts at all, you know that I am big on friendships, connections, loyalty and honesty. They all play a role in what others get to be within your life. And, in a field where honesty and integrity are supposed to matter most, I am learning that few (if any people I'm surrounded by) even have these qualities. 

Beyoncé is someone who is nice to everyone that she comes across. She's sweet and kind, and these qualities usually give weak people the space to speak negatively or speak lies about her (similar to real life). But in this album, I love that she lets the listeners know that she's not having it. She let y'all know that she no longer has room for new people, she's keeping her circle small. She reminded y'all that she's Beezus (because Kanye has been overstepping lately), so my advice this time around (for all the haters) is the same as hers -- Watch the Throne (& also keep my name out ya mouth -- Heard About Us). 


I definitely didn't get to all of the songs, and I for sure did not go into detail as much as I could have on the songs that I mentioned (shoot I think I got so distracted that I didn't even unpack them), but I hope it is very clear that I truly love everything about this album. 

I love the blackness of the video for Apeshit. 

I love that they mentioned being good on any MLK Boulevard, and for those of you that don't understand that... There are plenty of sell-outs these days: they sell out their families, they sell out their culture, they sell out themselves. The Carter's are letting y'all know that they have not sold out at all, so they're free to walk from Boulevard to Boulevard (& the Blackest of Boulevards), but a lot of people can't say the same thing (Kanye, for one).

The amount of little things that there are to catch in these songs is insane, and I guarantee that I will continue to listen to this album on repeat for months to come! 

I hope y'all enjoyed my scattered break-down (that wasn't so much a break-down but really a STAN SESSION) of this album. If you haven't heard it (probably 2 people in the world), go listen now. 

#EverythingIsLove 

#OTRII