Best Hair Products For Men & More

The difficulty in finding a hair product that is best for your hair is the sheer flood products on the market. You can find anything from one dollar products to others that cost several hundred dollars but just because one thing is more expensive, it doesn’t mean it is automatically better for you. Secondly, just because a hair product works well for your friend, it doesn’t mean it’s going to work for you simply because you may have very thick greasy hair when your friend has thin and dry hair.

How To Choose The Right Hair Product For Your Hair Type

Sven Raphael Schneider's unstyled hair
Sven Raphael Schneider’s unstyled hair

Analyze Your Hair Type

Hair types can be straight, wavy, curly, or kinky, all of which can be thin or thick. For example, I have coarse, thick, and voluminous hair that is quite dry so I need a product that tames my hair without drying it out. As a kid, I had curls and if I let my hair grow, it definitely becomes more wavy. For me, I always use hair products with an extreme hold, otherwise, my hair just does whatever it wants. On the other hand, if you have thin, sparse, or straight hair, you do not want a product without a hold, otherwise, it’s weighing your hair down. 

Frankly, it’s best to talk to your barber or to your hairstylist because they have more experience and they can tell you what kind of hair you got.

James Dean's signature hairstyle.
James Dean’s signature hairstyle.

Decide On The Style You Want

Basically, that means what do you want your hair to look like. Do you want to have beach hair that is wavy and stands up? Do you want something that I have that is relatively stiff and very neat and gentlemanly? Do you want your hair to be flexible or loose or just very much in place? do you want a matte and textured look? or do you want a smooth and shiny look? Should be obvious or should be subtle? These are all questions that you have to answer for yourself. Again, it pays to talk to your stylist and look at different photos and see what you like and dislike.

Take A Stylist’s Advice With A Grain Of Salt

As I mentioned before, a stylist knows your hair, they have a good comparison, they’ve tried different things, and they know what works for a certain type of hair and what doesn’t. On the flip side, they have a serious conflict of interest simply because if you think about your haircut right, doing your haircut takes them 30, 40, or 50 minutes. Now, by selling you a product, they can make twice as much or maybe even more money just by selling that product in an additional two minutes. Therefore, stylists aren’t really objective about what they’re selling you. Chances are they want to sell you something that is ideal for your hair that they have right there at the store.

In some salons and barbershops, they are trying to tell you that the products they have from a certain brand are different than if you buy them at Costco for example, however, there is no evidence that suggests that the J. Crew product you buy at your barbershop is any different than the one you buy at your drugstore.

Your regular stylist can help you out when it comes to your hair
Your regular stylist can help you out when it comes to your hair

In general, anything related to hair is a very high margin product so always keep it in mind when you buy something. Also, don’t be afraid to question and ask your stylist about specifics. The sales pitch may go like this, “This product has much higher quality ingredients that are much more concentrated without any filler materials, also it only uses essential oils and leaves out all the bad chemicals”. Good questions to ask are:

  • Why is this product the better quality?
  • Why is this one ingredient better than the others?
  • Which chemicals exactly are left out?
  • What is the concentration in this product?

If they can’t answer those questions or if they are not willing to tell you to answer them later and do some research, it’s nothing more but an empty sales pitch.

Assorted Hair Products For Men
Assorted Hair Products For Men

Different Types Of Hair Products

Pomade, gel, wax, styling cream, putty, clay, sea salt spray, paste, and last but not least, hair spray. So the big question is what do they do and what are they best for? Here is where the problem begins.

These are not trademarked or defined terms and every brand may use them slightly differently. So for one brand, pomade is kind of a wax based product with fat that you smear in your hair; for others, it’s completely waxless, water soluble, and just different altogether. Because of that, it’s very difficult for you, as a consumer, to do an apples-to-apples comparison simply based on the type of product you have. Yes, a spray is a spray but some may be aerosol sprays, others may be a pump spray which can be hugely different in their effect on your hair.

So what should you do instead? I suggest you look at the characteristics of each hair product which is hold, body, and shine. Every hair product will have different strengths in different areas and this is what matters most to your hair. With hold, I mean, how long does a specific product hold that hairstyle throughout the day no matter it’s really sunny, windy, or rainy? With body, I mean how much volume does a hair product add to your hair? By shine, I mean how reflective is your hair going to be in terms of light? Do you want it to sparkle or do you want it to be very matte? Now, even though I just said every hair product type is slightly different, we still try to create an infographic that fits 95% of the hair products out there and you can find it on our website here.

Evaluate The Ingredients Of Hair Products

As with pretty much anything, as a consumer, you have to be educated so you can cut through the marketing speech and make sure you get the best value product for your hair. Now you may wonder how do I do that? I have no clue about hair, where do I start making an informed decision? Honestly, the best place for information on hair products that I found is the Environmental Working Group Skin Deep Cosmetics Database. Yes, that is a mouthful but guess what? This wasn’t made by marketers but by scientists hence the tongue breaker name. Even though the name suggests, it just covers cosmetics, it covers hair products as well and has overall more than 70,000 products that were analyzed in detail. All you have to do is type in your product brand and the product name and then it will show you if it contains any hazardous materials, what the composition is, and also if there are other products that are may be related but better.

Personally to me, it was reveling even just typing in big brands like Jack Black, or J Crew, Paul Mitchell, or Redken and realizing that these brands that are always praised as something really special are maybe not quite as good as you thought they were. Overall, it gave me a much better idea of what kind of stuff I put in my hair whether it makes sense for the hair type I have and the style I’m going for and what other products are out there that are much better.

Environmental Working Group Skin Deep Cosmetics Database
Environmental Working Group Skin Deep Cosmetics Database

Experiment With Different Hair Products

I really urge you to experiment with different hair products. Yes, the database can really help you to narrow things down to a certain group of products but and ultimately, you still have to wear it in your hair and decide if it’s something you want or if the look is just not right. No matter if you buy online or the retail store, chances are you’ll just have to invest some money to get some of the products. Very rarely are you allowed to return products that you’ve already used but it may make sense to ask beforehand what the return policy is with specific retailers. Of course, if they allow you to return things, chances are their prices are gonna be a little higher because they have to beat that cost. Now, if you buy a product from your stylist, you have the chance to just try it out in your hair maybe after a haircut without having to buy it so that’s a great opportunity to test things out without having to spend extra money.

Our Favorite Hair Products

göt2b Spiking Gel for Thick, Textured Hair

side view, Sven Raphael Schneider's styled disconnected udnercut
Sven Raphael Schneider’s styled disconnected undercut with göt2b Spiking Glue hair gel

Gentleman’s Gazette founder Sven Raphael Schneider, tried pomade for a while until he realized he suffered from pomade acne. However, he has very thick, stubborn hair and so he was looking for an alternative product that allowed him to create a nice look with a part that would keep his hair in place.

After experimenting for over 6 months, it turned out that the water-soluble spiking glue gel from göt2b was the only gel strong enough to keep his hair in place. Interestingly, other göt2b products did not work for him at all. He has been using the gel in the yellow tube for nearly 10 years, and his hair looks great. Even better, göt2b Spiking Glue is cheap and since it is made by Henkel, it should be available around the globe.

Groom & Clean for Thin, Straight Hair

Preston Wearing Groom & Clean
Preston Wearing Groom & Clean

Though not as well known as Brylcreem, Groom & Clean is a classic product from the 1950’s that is still a great product for men today, and it’s the favorite of GG Producer Preston Schleuter. Unlike it’s more famous cousins, pomade and Brylcreem, it contains no wax and is therefore easy to wash out in a single washing. Groom & Clean is an emulsion of water and mineral oil that also contains lanolin, a naturally derived oil, for moisture and hold. It has a pleasant but minimal scent fades quickly after application. developed in the late 50’s; easily touched up with a wet comb

It feels like a slightly tacky lotion and with a small amount, it will provide you with a light hold that is pliable all day long, or with larger amounts will result in a high shine with a medium to strong hold. It’s extremely versatile and is easily washed out without any sweat or tears. Long hair or short, Groom & Clean is well worth trying – and it’s inexpensive to boot.


I urge you to check out the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Database. That is really the first step and if you go down that path, you’ll have to invest a few hours but you’ll be armed with more information and you know exactly what’s good for your hair and what is not.

Gentleman’s Gazette


Look like a Gentleman, Travel in Style and Enjoy the Best in Men’s Accessories at Hook & Albert. Get 20% Off Your First Order with Coupon Code TAKE20. Shop Now!

Beauty of 5: Amazon Launched A New Skincare Line And These Are The Products You Should Try

You're as beautiful as you believe you are

Source: LumiNola / Getty

Amazon launched their own beauty line and the entire world is excited. Belei is a cruelty-free collection, free from sulfates, parabens, phthalates. The in-depth skincare line was designed to address every blemish, dark spot, and wrinkle on your face. Get ready to indulge in serums, moisturizers, cleansers, masks and so much more. This is the first of the brand’s kind so the pressure is on for it to do well in the beauty market. If this launch sparks your interest, get ready to learn about 5 products carried by the collection that you must try.


One of the most amazing feelings in the world is taking a full face of makeup off with a damp cleansing wipe. Belei’s Oil-Free Micellar Facial Cleanser Wipes ($ 9.00, has a fragrance and alcohol-free formula that won’t irritate or dry out your skin. You can count on this product to lift makeup, dirt and oil, while unclogging your pores. What I love most about this product is that you’re receiving 2 packs of facial wipes for just $ 9.00. Every makeup regimen needs an effective moisturizer. The key to healthy, clear, beautiful skin is hydration. Belei’s Retinol Refining Moisturizer ($ 35.00, will smooth the appearance of wrinkles, and fine lines. Best use for this product? Anytime! Apply in the morning before makeup, at night before bed, or during the day on a clean face.



Adult acne is, unfortunately, a real thing that many people battle. Belei’s Blemish Control Spot Treatment ($ 22.00, is designed to address each dark spot and blemish head-on. Apply once a day to the affected area after cleansing your face. With a combination of washing your face, using the spot treatment, and moisturizing your face, you’ll be able to eliminate those pesky pimples! A good skincare regimen is so important. Us melanated folks have proven that we can age backwards. With the help of good products, we can really maximize on the youthfulness of our skin. Amazon dipping into the beauty industry is kind of major. The name alone packs enough power to have me curious about this collection.

What do you think? Will you be sampling the Belei line?





Beauty of 5: Angela Bassett Shares Her Go To Beauty Products That Keep Her Looking Youthful

The Paley Center For Media's 2019 PaleyFest LA - '9-1-1'

Source: Jean Baptiste Lacroix / Getty

It’s hard to believe that actress Angela Bassett is 60-years-old. The Black Panther actress always looks so youthful and her body is snatched to the Gods! We had an opportunity to chat with the star about her beauty and skincare routine and she dished was she uses to keep her skin looking youthful. She admitted, “I use a number of things. I try potions and lotions as I call them.” Keep on reading to find out what products Bassett is using to keep her beauty at a premium.



New FDA policy could get some flavored e-cigarette products pulled off the market

The US Food and Drug Administration released a policy draft Wednesday aimed at preventing e-cigarette products from getting into kids’ hands. The result could be that some flavored products are taken off the market. – RSS Channel – Health


Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!


Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

Scouted: The Sill Founder Eliza Banks on the Products That Shape Her Day

Masha Maltsava

In honor of International Women’s Day, we talked to a group of female and female-identifying entrepreneurs, CEOs, and founders about the products they utilize in their everyday life that make it better. Read more Week of the Woman content here.

“Plants make people happy” is the motto that The Sill and founder Eliza Banks run on. The online-only plant mecca is a place for planters of all levels, from novice to expert. The Sill is a place for every kind of plant person to thrive, just like their greenery.

What is one thing that helps keep you motivated throughout the day?

Read more at The Daily Beast.

The Daily Beast Latest Articles

SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN: -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News


Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!


Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

10 Hair Products Under $10 That Will Have Your Natural Hair Flourishing

My curls, my crown

Source: Delmaine Donson / Getty

Watching natural hair tutorials and following beauty gurus is all fun and games until you’ve got a shopping cart overflowing with products you don’t need and can’t afford. I know—the temptation to be a product junkie is real. Speaking as a recovering addict myself, it’s crucial to learn when to splurge and when to save when it comes to your hair. Luckily for you, we’ve compiled this list of ten products, all $ 10 or less, to keep your natural hair thriving on a reasonable budget.



ICYMI: Bright-Red Street Style Inspiration, Justin Bieber’s Yeezy-esque Clothing Line & Our Favorite Beauty Products of the Month

Sure, we’re all glued to our phones/tablets/laptops/watches that barely tell time, but even the best of us miss out on some important #content from time to time. That’s why, in case you missed it, we’ve rounded up our most popular stories of the week to help you stay in the loop. No need to thank …

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Collective nostalgia makes people prefer domestic products

Nostalgia for events experienced by members of your own group can make you prefer domestic products over foreign ones, concludes the first systematic investigation into the effects of collective nostalgia on consumer decisions. The results could help countries bolster domestic industries without resorting to hard interventions, such as tariffs or international trade re-negotiations.
Consumer Behavior News — ScienceDaily


10 Retro Home Products that Are Back in Style

Every generation has a tendency to recycle trends and styles from the past. For some its rediscovering favorites of yesteryear, while for others it’s an introduction to something new. Whether it’s a case of nostalgia, improved technology, or a mix bit of both, these 10 items are making a comeback in homes all across the country.
Bob Vila : Trusted Home Renovation & Repair Expert


The Best Alternative Products for Your Period: DivaCup, Thinx, DearKates and More!

the best alternative products for your period

So here’s a topic that is not going to be for everyone (I totally get it if you want to skip this post!), but something that I’m always interested to read about are the best alternative products for your period. Over the lifetime of this blog, you guys have heard a LOT about my life and my thoughts on various products and tips for optimizing your life — but hearing about me and Aunt Flo may be too far even for me, so this post is mostly going to be referring you to threadjacks where the readers discuss the various products. I will note that I’ve tried a variety of products (I’ve had my Dear Kates for the longest) and for my lifestyle they work really well. I like them from an environmental perspective, I’m not grossed out by them from a wearing or cleaning perspective, and they’ve held up well even after three years of use. I particularly want to recommend alternative period products like reusable pads and period underwear when I hear people talking about situations where they are waiting for a period for a long time, either because they don’t know if/when a period is coming because they’re trying to conceive, they’re several months postpartum, suffering from missed periods due to PCOS or another medical reason — or even if they’re just entering perimenopause or otherwise finding that periods may not be as reliably timed as they were in the past. 

SO: we’ve rounded up some of the most noteworthy reader threadjacks on this topic — and I’d love to open this post up to more discussion! Readers, have you tried alternative products for your period like DivaCup, Thinx, DearKates, or more? What have been your experiences with them — do you still use them — and who would you recommend them for? 

Pictured at top: Diva Cup / Reusable Cloth Liners / Dear Kate

This post contains affiliate links and Corporette® may earn commissions for purchases made through links in this post. For more details see here. Thank you so much for your support!

DivaCup: Good & Bad Experiences  

Positive DivaCup Reviews:

Less Positive DivaCup Reviews: 

Period Panties: Thinx vs. Dear Kate 

  • I love Thinx, but they are a lot thicker than even cotton underwear.
  • Has anyone tried Thinx? Do they work?
  • I have Thinx, and I love them.
  • I really like my Dear Kates. I have three pairs.
  • They really worked and were wonderful with wicking moisture away.
  • Dear Kates are awesome, and so comfy and cute.
  • I discovered Dear Kate and Vv Skivvys a couple years ago and wish I’d known about them sooner.
  • Anyone tried those cool new period panties?
  • Mini-review from Kat: I’ve had a few pairs of Dear Kates for several years now and like them; I only use them a few days a month but they’ve held up really well. They’re the most comfortable and elegant solution I’ve tried, much more so than the reusable liners I’ve tried (I find the snaps a bit uncomfortable on both sets, and this liner was crazy thick). I’ve only tried one other brand of period panties (the Innersy brand, bought on a flash sale) and vastly prefer the Dear Kates — the other product feels a bit stiff and crinkly, and I do not like the light gray lining. From a laundering perspective I rinse them before I throw them in the wash, and air dry them — air drying them in sunlight is supposed to be best if possible. Sometimes I spray them with vinegar after rinsing them (before throwing them in the washer) but I don’t think it’s necessary.

Using Period Panties as a Backup for a DivaCup

Readers, do tell: what do you think are the best alternative products for your period? Have you used period panties and/or a menstrual cup during your period? What have you found to be the best brands or products? Which ones haven’t worked well for you?

Hunting for the best alternative products for your period? We rounded up a ton of reader thoughts on menstral cups, reusable pads and period panties like Thinx, DearKate, Innersy, DivaCup, reusable menstrual pads, and more! Whether you're suffering from missed periods due to PCOS or other medical concerns, or you're not sure when your next period is coming because you're several months postpartum, trying to conceive, or in perimenopause, these can be an easy, environmentally friendly, no-waste solution. Kat shares her DearKate review, also, and we rounded up a ton of other reader thoughts including DivaCup reviews, DivaCup tips, Thinx reviews, and more.

The post The Best Alternative Products for Your Period: DivaCup, Thinx, DearKates and More! appeared first on


11 home products on sale that’ll give your space a glow-up 2019


Getting in shape? Eating healthier? Psh. As 2019 rounds the bend, make a New Year’s resolution you can actually stick to — like giving your home a much-needed makeover. 

We weren’t able to track down Ty Pennington on your behalf, unfortunately, but we’ve done the next best thing: rounded up a list of 11 awesome, on-sale products that make it easy to revitalize one’s space. Plus, you can combine them with another popular New Year’s resolution — saving money — by entering the code NEWYEAR2019 at checkout and score an additional 19% off.

1. 6-Piece Bibb Home Cotton Towel Set 

Bring the luxury of a spa to your bathroom with these ultra-soft, ultra-absorbable, and ultra-durable two-ply cotton towels. Each set comes with two bath towels, two hand towels, and two washcloths, and comes in your choice of three shades: silver, coral, and white. Read more…

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New make-up, skincare and hair products to snap up in the post-Christmas sales

We’ve tested all the new launches to bring you the best of the best (yaaaass)

new make-up skincare hair products

The life of a beauty addict is never dull thanks to dozens of brand new make-up, skin and hair products launching every single week.

New launches always bring with them a lot of hype, and so it can be hard to tell whether that hype is actually warranted – because nobody wants to splash their hard earned cash on something they’ll eventually regret buying.

Fortunately for you, the Marie Claire online beauty team gets to test the lot of them way before they hit the shops, from the best mascara to the best moisturisers for dry skin.

We’ll be bringing you a break down of the best new releases you should be fighting to get your hands on before they sell out (which trust us, they will do).

So, what’s good this month?

French model, photographer and all-round ‘it girl’ Jeanne Damas has launched her own capsule line of lipsticks, Rouje, containing every lip colour you need from mauve-hued nude to classic red. For the ultimate Parisian cool girl feel, smudge them in with your finger rather than applying straight from the bullet. Dreamy.

Meanwhile Benefit is back once again with a superb liquid [roller] liner, expanding on the already excellent Roller Lash. Want proof of how good it is? I lent it to my sister and it survived a pre-Boxing Day sales shift in retail, without budging or smudging.

And Cover FX has released the perfect party multitasker, Shimmer Veils, which can be used on the eyes, lips and skin. Mix a little as a highlighter or apply directly to the eye for a shimmery shadow. Perfection.

Keep scrolling for our curated edit of the best new make-up launches and skincare drops, waving goodbye to your healthy bank balance in the process. Make sure you check back here for all the latest new beauty products 2019 brings in, as and when they’re announced.

It’s high time for a big beauty haul, we say…

The post New make-up, skincare and hair products to snap up in the post-Christmas sales appeared first on Marie Claire.

Marie Claire


Style Your Home’s Outdoors with All the Perfect Additions from MacKenzie-Childs! Save on Tables, House Letters & Chairs. Shop Now!

Ho, Ho, Ho! This Christmas, Phaedra Parks Wants You To Keep Your Peach ‘Sweet & Fresh’ With These Products

Atlanta Junket For The New Warner Bros. Movie EVERYTHING, EVERYTHING

Source: Paras Griffin / Getty

It’s no secret that Phaedra Parks is the queen of side hustles. Not only is she a lawyer and a mortician, but she is now dabbling in the feminine products game.

Enter: My Healthy Peach.

According to TMZ, the former Real Housewives of Atlanta co-star is collaborating with Tatianna Knights RN, BSN, a labor and delivery nurse, for a new line to help women have “a nice juicy fresh peach and a sweet peach.”

“I am introducing a new product line. You know I’m known for my ‘badookadonk,’ but my new product line has to do something about…with your vagina,” Phaedra said during a recent gathering of friends at her Atlanta home for a “Ladies Night Out” event.

“So my new product line ‘The Healthy Peach,’ is about not having a tart peach,” the mother of two said. “I want the peaches to be sweet and fresh.”

“My Healthy Peach will make you juicy and sweet.

The line, which is free of sulfates, parabens and most harsh chemicals, seems to be doing well. According to the company’s website, the $ 12.50 box of wipes appear to be sold out.

In addition, it appears that Phaedra is making amends with her former cast mates, including Nene Leakes. Here’s a picture of her, Nene, Greg Leakes and Cynthia Bailey celebrating Nene’s birthday.

“#birthday#joy with @neneleakes @greggleakes@cynthiabailey10 @marlohampton@tammepha #reunited and it felt good 😜,” she wrote.

Instagram Photo

Instagram Photo


“We keep in touch and we talk,” Phaedra revealed on a recent episode of TV One’s Sister Circle. “Her husband is going through Cancer, so I’ve been trying to support her.”

Phaedra also hinted that she is open to returning to RHOA–if asked.

“And you know never say never, it’s a new year who knows,” she offered. “But like I tell people I’m an old-fashioned girl and I have five degrees as we all know. So I really don’t have to do anything I don’t want to. I have companies, and jobs and businesses.”


Instagram Photo


Guess only time will tell if she returns to the Bravo hit show AND if these wipes will continue to keep selling out.


Black America Web


Ulta Holiday Beauty Blitz 2018: Shop the Best Deals on Products

Ulta’s 2018 Holiday Beauty Blitz Sale means you get access to beauty deals every single day leading up to Christmas from brands like Smashbox, Stila, and more. Follow along here so you don’t miss out on the offers as they drop each week, with just 24 hours to score them before they’re done.


Prenatal exposure to chemicals in personal care products may speed puberty in girls

Girls exposed to chemicals commonly found in toothpaste, makeup, soap and other personal care products before birth may hit puberty earlier, according to a new longitudinal study. Researchers found that daughters of mothers who had higher levels of diethyl phthalate and triclosan in their bodies during pregnancy experienced puberty at younger ages.
Teen Health News — ScienceDaily


The Black Travel Box Provides Travel Size Hair and Skin Products for People of Color

While away on a vacation, one of the last things you want to deal with is an exhaustive search for products to fix a bad hair day. So when Orion Brown found herself in Japan “dealing with a major miscalculation of weather and a head full of hair with no hope,” she turned her annoyance into opportunity.

“I didn’t have enough product to get me through the trip and there was nowhere locally I could find the products I needed,” said Brown. “Dejected, I avoided the selfies and made the best of it. But upon reflection, I could only hope that someone would make (or would have made) a product company for travelers like me. There weren’t. So I created The Black Travel Box.”

The Black Travel Box provides travel size hair and skin products for people of color delivered to your door when you want. The product line includes a conditioner bar, hair balm, body balm, and lip balm.

“They say that necessity is the mother of invention,” said Brown. “Well, there’s no greater necessity for me than the “necessities” of travel when on vacation. We’re not a typical subscription box company. Our ‘subscribe and save’ model is similar to Amazon’s, where customers can choose products they know and trust, and then select a personalized schedule for receiving them right to their door. Subscribing is optional, but offers savings over one-time purchases, its flexible, and it can be canceled anytime.”

Travel size hair and skin products for people of color

Black Travel


With a background in consumer goods marketing and brand management, Brown leveraged her lessons learned, while working in corporate to build her business model and test the market for the products and service before launching it.

The Black Travel Box could not be where it is today without that working experience,” said Brown. “While I’m still learning the ropes of entrepreneurship, the corporate experience of building and maintaining brands is exceptionally relevant here, particularly as we come into a personal care space that is both vast and nonexistent.”

For instance, according to a Nielsen study, “African Americans have cornered the ethnic hair and beauty market, ringing up $ 54 million of the $ 63 million total industry spent in 2017. Black shoppers spent $ 473 million in total hair care (a $ 4.2 billion industry) and made other significant investments in personal appearance products, such as grooming aids ($ 127 million out of $ 889 million) and skin care preparations ($ 465 million out of $ 3 billion).”  Plus, according to data from Mandala Research, black Americans spend $ 48 billion each year traveling and are among the fastest growing segments in the U.S., with 68% surveyed wanting to learn more about their history and culture through travel.

Travelers of color who want to look and feel their best when traveling abroad are the primary consumers of the Black Travel Box.

“They take photos, selfies, and love to share their experiences,” said Brown. “They are avid social media consumers and content makers. While they travel far and fairly often, the challenge of easily getting their look “just right” hasn’t yet been met. They compromise on the products that they bring along, spending time filling travel sized bottles with their favorite products, purchasing “basic” skin and hair care ingredients abroad, or struggling to make what’s available to them work for their unique needs.”

Perhaps the biggest appeal of the Black Travel Box is the sense of community it provides for black travelers.

“I started The Black Travel Box to give women of color a brand they could trust for all their travel personal care needs,” said Brown. “Globally, Black travelers have few if any places they can go to find personal care products that work for their hair and skincare needs. As the culture of international travel continues to grow in our community – more and more of us are exploring the world with a level of freedom and wanderlust that our parents and grandparents could never dream of. Our brand is here to help these millennial explorers travel in confidence (we call it #TravelInColor) knowing they have the products to put their best foot forward and rock those selfies in Croatia, London, China… or where ever their travels may take them.”

The post The Black Travel Box Provides Travel Size Hair and Skin Products for People of Color appeared first on Black Enterprise.

Lifestyle | Black Enterprise


Link Love: Budget-Friendly Skincare Products

Refinery29 rounds up six heavy-duty body lotions under $ 10 to hit the drugstore shelves this season.

The Fashion Spot shows us 38 drugstore skincare products dermatologists swear by.

With the future of The Ordinary uncertain, The Pool suggests some other new brands making effective skincare affordable.

Face serums often come with a hefty price tag, but here are 17 options that clock in at $ 30 or less.

Fab Links from Our Members

Scarlet was trying to figure out what the brand Jen7 is, and came across this article explaining it. “Interesting concept. The jeans are supposed to be for the original customer of the ’90s, who is now in her 40s, and whose body may have been changed due to child bearing.”

Rachylou liked that Emma Thompson wore sneakers to her damehood ceremony.

Vildy recently found this series of videos on how to style various basic items ten to twenty ways. “What I like about them is how she classifies each look — street style, preppy style, etc. It’s enjoyable to see how she tweaks each outfit to represent modern iconic looks, while at the same time keeping a very small wardrobe. A different kind of versatility than just dressy, casual, etc.” Vildy thought this fit right in with the shop-your-closet-challenges on the forum.



These 11 Easy DIY Alternatives Will Save You Money on Household Products

The older I get, the more I realize how much I’ve been duped into buying items I don’t need.

I thought I needed specific store-bought products until years of being broke forced me to find affordable DIY alternatives. I learned to forgo some items all together.

Seeking out other options for expensive household products can save you money and make a dent in your bottom line over time.

Affordable DIY Alternatives for 11 Household Items

Edge these items off your grocery list and put more money in your pocket with cheaper substitutes — or by doing a little DIY experimentation.


A person holds a lemon outside near a plant.
Lemons can work as a deodorant, but they do not block perspiration. Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

I didn’t waste money on deodorant for years because I didn’t need it. Why buy something I didn’t need?

Well… I did need it eventually and found an inexpensive natural alternative that blew my mind.

Lemons work as a natural deodorant. Citric acid kills bacteria and odor, plus this method is 100% natural.

Dice up the lemon into wedges and rub the juice side of the wedge on your armpit. Get the whole area wet. One wedge should work for both sides.  It doesn’t take much, and the same wedge can be used until it dries out, which can be days or more than a week.

You can use fresh or overripe lemons. Experiment to find what size works for you. They will not stop you from sweating because they’re not antiperspirant.

Pro tip: Do not apply after a fresh shave, ladies. It’s painful and might cause irritation. Trust me.

Not into lemons? Try Crystal brand mineral deodorant. One stone costs around $ 3 and can last for a year.


A person makes saltwater.
Dissolve table salt into a glass of water for a mouthwash replacement. Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

A name-brand bottle of mouthwash costs between $ 5 and $ 10. A saltwater rinse costs a few cents. Mix table salt with warm water and you have the cheapest mouthwash around.

Or try apple cider vinegar, a common homemade mouthwash before over-the-counter mouthwashes became popular. Use two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and one cup of filtered water.

Another solution is right in your medicine cabinet for a fraction of the cost: hydrogen peroxide.

Look closely at the bottle, which says, “oral debriding agent” right on the front. This means it is safe to put in your mouth as an oral wound cleanser. On the back, you’ll find debriding instructions. You basically dilute with water and swish for a minute.

You should use the water and peroxide mixture immediately, and don’t save any leftover solution.

Hana Rashid, a dentist in Roseville, California, said she loves to gargle and swish with peroxide, especially when she has a cold or sore throat.

It helps reduce inflammation in the mouth and keep bleeding from gum disease down between visits, she says. The burning or bubbling sensation means it’s working to calm inflammation.

“It is not an unsafe mouthwash, but care must be taken not to swallow large amounts,” she said.

Peroxide is the main ingredient in tooth-whitening products, so if left too long, Rashid warned, it can temporarily bleach your gums, lasting about 20 to 30 minutes.  

Swishing with peroxide will yield similar results as expensive mouthwash, but it won’t taste great.

“I like to use essential oils, like peppermint, cinnamon bark and clove in water,” she said.

Try mixing peroxide with baking soda for your own whitening paste and skip buying whitening strips while you’re at it.

Shaving Cream

A bar of soap is photographed with a razor.
Bar soap can be used as a replacement for shaving cream. Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

I stopped using shaving cream years ago.

I simply sub in bar soap or hair conditioner.

Most of us have a nearly empty bottle of conditioner occupying precious shower real estate. Use up that sad vessel next time you shave. You’ll wonder why you bought shaving cream all these years.

Conditioner and bar soap aren’t ideal for facial shaves, so try substitutes like shave soap or aloe vera. One $ 3 bar of shave soap can last more than six months.

For aloe vera, apply directly from the plant to your face, or use an affordable gel. It works great as an aftershave, too. Its anti-inflammatory properties reduce razor burn and irritation.  I have a garden full of the stuff, so it’s a freebie for me. Consider planting some!

Cleaning Rags

It took years before I figured out that I didn’t need to buy cleaning rags. (Don’t be mad at yourself for not realizing this sooner.)

Use old undershirts, leftover fabric and any clothes unfit for donation.

Tear or cut them — careful to remove any buttons — into pieces. They last longer that way, and you’ll have an endless supply to fit your cleaning needs. Toss them in the wash and reuse until they reach retirement age.

As for that orphaned sock, put your hand inside and use it to remove dust. Wash, repeat.

Paper Towels

A stack of dish towels are photographed.
Try using dish towels and wash cloths instead of paper towels. Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

This one is really hard to quit. Paper towels are so integrated into our daily lives that we hardly notice how many we use for tasks such as cleaning up spills, wiping greasy paws or picking up dead bugs.

My usage greatly decreased when I invested $ 12 in a set of 12 cloth napkins. I use one multiple times before washing (unless I’m extra messy) and always have extra for guests.  

This one move significantly reduced the volume of paper towels I went through and freed up a little room in my grocery budget.

A coworker said she likes to use cheap fabric from Goodwill and repurposes old tablecloths as napkins instead of buying paper towels.

When it comes to spills or hand drying, use wash cloths and dish towels, or something from that old T-shirt rag pile. You’ll be surprised at how little you need paper towels.

Makeup Remover

A person squirts jojoba oil onto her fingertips.
Jojoba oil can be used to remove eye makeup. Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

There are makeup removing wipes, creams, pads, cloths and an assortment of accessories to clean your face at the end of the day.

Stocking up on these not only takes up space, but they steal valuable budget dollars from more important items.

Jojoba, olive and coconut oil remove makeup.

These one-ingredient wonders last for months, have a multitude of uses and take up little space. You might even have one of them in your home already. Most oils do the trick, so try something that works best for you.

If oil isn’t an option for you, try aloe vera, alcohol-free witch hazel, shea butter, a cotton ball dipped in milk or a cucumber slice to remove makeup.

Bathtub Cleaner

I have tried so many bathroom cleaners. None of them quite works right.

Once I tried to strong-arm tub stains by combining all the cleaners I had. That dangerous concoction was a terribly unsafe idea that didn’t work, either.

Did you know that you can use a grapefruit or lemon juice to clean your bathtub?

Get your tub wet. Cut a grapefruit in half and sprinkle salt on the exposed part. Start scrubbing! Use this technique on sinks and faucets.

Lemon juice with a scrub brush yields a similar result. The acidity of both fruit eats through scum and leaves your bathroom smelling naturally fresh (and not like a chemical bomb).

If you wanna skip the fruit scrubs, try one of these cheap DIY cleaner recipes or a homemade cleaning product  to get the job done.

Dryer sheets

Wool dryer balls are pictured on a pile of laundry. They naturally help keep clothes soft and static-free without using dryer sheets.
Sharon Steinmann/The Penny Hoarder

Dryer sheets are a common laundry additive that you just don’t need. They’re a single-use product far from waste-free, and full of chemicals.

I stopped using them years ago and don’t miss ’em one bit. If you don’t need them, don’t use ’em.

However, if you live in a dry climate or are a static magnet, then try wool dryer balls instead of dryer sheets.

They’re good for thousands of uses, reduce static cling and wrinkles and speed up drying time. Not to mention they’re cheap, nontoxic and chemical-free.


A coconut oil cooking spray is photographed.
Cooking spray can be used as a replacement for WD40. Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

You know what you have in your home and works just like WD-40? Cooking spray.

Yup, I use cooking spray anywhere I would WD-40.

It greases sticky locks and creaky doors and unsticks gum. You can also use Crisco or a homemade concoction of cooking oils if that’s what you have on hand.

Fabric Softener

Remember when we talked about that nearly empty conditioner bottle earlier?  If you don’t want use it to shave, consider repurposing it as a fabric softener.

Try this homemade fabric-softener recipe by mixing two cups of conditioner, three cups of white vinegar, six cups of water and adding any essential oils you like (optional), and voilà; you just saved yourself from buying overpriced fabric softener.

Stain Remover

Dawn dish soap is photographed with an old white shirt.
Dawn dish soap can be used to get rid of stains. Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

Not all stains are created equal. Removing them is an art form unless you have blue Dawn dish soap. That’s the secret ingredient in most DIY stain removers.

Most DIY recipes have a variation of peroxide, baking soda and water. Maybe you’ll learn  a personal favorite (do tell), but try this mom’s “miracle cleaner” that works on carpet, clothes and upholstery to get you started.

How excited are you to try all this home?

Next time you’re at the store, don’t forget to smile when you pass all the items you don’t need to buy anymore.

Stephanie Bolling is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She may have reached granola status.
Read her full bio here or say hi On Twitter @StephBolling.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

The Penny Hoarder Promise: We provide accurate, reliable information. Here’s why you can trust us and how we make money.

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17 New Drugstore Makeup Products You Definitely Want to Try This Fall

There’s a certain joy to be found wandering up and down the beauty aisles at your local drugstore. It’s a haven where everything is shiny and colorful — and most importantly, affordable. You can scoop up lipsticks that cost roughly the price of a latte, high-performing foundations that are priced comparably to your sandwich order at Subway — and the list goes on.

The only drawback? Well, there’s so much turnover and new launches that it can be tough to keep up with all the top products. And that’s where we’ve got your back: We’ve tested a sampling of the newest and best drugstore makeup launches and picked a few favorites — and they’re all under $ 15. Keep reading to see the products we liked the most!

[ Next: These Gorgeous Eyeshadow Palettes Are Your New Fall Must-Haves ]


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The post 17 New Drugstore Makeup Products You Definitely Want to Try This Fall appeared first on theFashionSpot.



Philip Morris shares jump as new tobacco products gain momentum overseas

Philip Morris International reported quarterly earnings and revenue that surpassed analysts' expectations. The company has been focusing most of its attention on iQOS, a device that heats tobacco instead of burning it.
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11 Pumpkin Skin Care Products That’ll Brighten Your Complexion for Fall

Pumpkin is so much more than an autumnal treat found in lattes. The orange gourd is actually rich in alpha hydroxy acids, which help exfoliate and renew the skin, say dermatologists. Here, we’ve rounded up 11 pumpkin-infused skin-care products to use for brighter skin this fall.


How Do You Find New Beauty Products?

how do you find new beauty productsSo here’s a fun question for today: how do you find new beauty products and decide which to buy? If you’re looking for a new mascara, for example, do you wade through tons of online reviews? Ask your makeup-wearing friends about their favorites? Pick up a mascara while you’re at the drugstore because you’ve heard good things about it? While we’ve previously talked about overrated beauty products, beauty empties (the products you finish and then buy again), and the best beauty store tips and tricks, we haven’t specifically talked about this do you find new beauty products to buy

Here are some online resources to help you when you’re trying to find new beauty products:

Reviews on Ulta or SephoraThe most popular products on these sites have hundreds or even thousands of reviews, while others have zero. Customers occasionally include images, but I usually don’t find them helpful because people are often wearing multiple products and I can’t see the particular effect of the one I’m interested in. They also seem to frequently use filters or otherwise edit their images, which doesn’t help either. The two companies’ reviews offer various “extras”; Sephora tells you the number of “Loves” for each item and gives the option to highlight reviews from your “Beauty Matches” (those who share your eye color, hair color, skin tone, and skin type), while Ulta shows the most commonly stated pros and cons (e.g., “blends easily” or “creases”), ranks the best uses (everyday, work, etc.), and categorizes the styles of the reviewers themselves (trendy, natural, or classic).

Amazon reviews: I hesitate to buy beauty items at Amazon now because of the reports of counterfeit products (although it definitely isn’t the only site facing this issue) as well as the number of fake reviews, which seems to be growing. To determine the authenticity of reviews for a certain product, try Fakespot, which we recently recommended. (One of my favorite podcasts, Reply All, recently did an episode to answer “Why does it seem like Amazon has suddenly gotten a lot sketchier?”) Still, it often has the highest number of reviews — on everything from high-end to drugstore — so I check it even when I’m planning to buy from another site.

MakeupAlley: In “internet time,” MakeupAlley, which offers product reviews and discussion boards has been around for quite a while — since 1999. It currently claims to have 2,742,851 reviews of 170,436 products. I have rarely used the site myself, but a few years ago, Racked (R.I.P.) did a piece on the site, which it called “the most secretive community of beauty obsessives.”

Reviews on a brand’s website: I don’t know if my instincts are correct here — let me know your thoughts — but I tend to give less weight to reviews I read on a beauty brand’s own site than the ones at general beauty retailers like Sephora. I do this because specific-brand reviewers are an even more self-selected group than those who use sites like Sephora (or especially Amazon). I may be overanalyzing here — but unfortunately there’s no Fakespot tool for, say,

r/MakeupAddiction (Reddit): I haven’t spent a lot of time in this subreddit (definitely less than I’ve spent in, um, r/catpranks), but along the lines of r/ABraThatFits, which we mentioned in our recent post on how to buy a bra, I’ve heard that it can be very helpful. It seems like a good place to find honest, unbiased, unfiltered opinions on beauty products. You don’t have to sign up for a Reddit account to browse r/MakeupAddiction, but you do need one to post. Be sure to read the guidelines for successful posts and the Newbie Guide. Also check out r/Skincare Addiction — and just for fun, r/UnconventionalMakeup.

YouTube video reviews/tutorials: You probably know that there are many, many beauty videos on YouTube, including reviews, tutorials, and hauls. (If you are better about limiting your internet time than I am, you may not know that “Beauty YouTube” is a thriving subculture that even has its own scandals. Again, see Reply All.) Watching YouTube videos is a great way to see the products that you’re considering in action — depending on the lighting quality and the YouTuber’s camera skills, knowledge/technique, and ability to get to the point. I recommend checking out videos by British makeup artist Wayne Goss, for one. Readers, do tell: Which beauty YouTubers do you watch?

(Kat’s quick add: I find new beauty products by subscribing to different subscription services (here’s my review of Play! by Sephora vs Ipsy vs. Birchbox) and if I’ve been drawn to a new lipstick, eyeliner or lipstick for some various reason (read about it somewhere, liked the packaging or online copy, or saw a good sale) I love Googling “product name + swatches” and reviewing all the different swatches. There is something very zen about swatches!)

How do you decide which new beauty products to buy? Which of the above resources have you used? Which sites’ online reviews do you trust? (Or do you skip reviews entirely?) Do you prefer to try before you buy, either with free samples or in-store testers? Which beauty purchases have you later regretted, whether they were impulse buys or researched?


1 dead as 89,000 pounds of ham products are recalled over listeria concerns

A North Carolina company is recalling more than 89,000 pounds of ready-to-eat ham products for possible listeria contamination that has led to one death and three illnesses, USA Today reports. 
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