Honey & Epsom Salt Mask for Radiant Skin

We all have those weeks where our skin just won’t get under control. It’s either dry skin, acne, dark spots, black heads…the list goes on. Frankly, it’s inevitable. We are all going to suffer from a breakout or two but that doesn’t mean that it’s untreatable! Most skin care issues can be treated right in the comfort of our own kitchen. In fact, you can treat a handful of skincare issues with only honey and epsom salt (you may have to leave the kitchen for the epsom salt).

Simply said, Honey and Epsom Salt have amazing benefits for the skin. What benefits, you ask?

Honey is

  • Antimicrobial (helps destroy the nasty bacteria on your skin)
  • Moisturizing
  • Great for fighting aging (wrinkles/dark spots!) and skin damage
  • Reduces infection/inflammation
  • Soothes irritated/acneic skin

Oh, and Epsom Salt?…

  • Flushes toxins from skin
  • Exfoliates dead skin
  • Removes black heads
  • Cleanses skin
  • Treats acne

So, are you ready to make a wonderful healing mask for your skin? For the male readers, this mask is not just for the ladies! This will work wonders on your skin, as well!

You’ll need:

  • 2 TBSP Honey
  • 2 TBSP Epsom Salt

Mix the honey and epsom salt until well combined. Feel free to add more or less honey or epsom salt. (Both ingredients are super gentle on your skin!). Gently apply the mixture to your face and allow to sit for 30+ minutes. Be prepared for dripping honey! (Keep a towel handy!) Rinse and apply your favorite moisturizer.

Enjoy!

~ Brown & Coconut

Check us out at www.brownandcoconut.com

 
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“Lost Control” vs “Control” (Joe Budden vs Kendrick Lamar)

What a week in hip hop huh?!! Kendrick Lamar made a lot of noise on the new Big Sean track “control” claiming that he’s the king of NY. Today, Joe Budden decided to bring his perspective to the beat! All I can say now is… at the fine age of 40, it feels great to see Hip Hop still alive and it’s especially great to see that the NYC rap crown still worth fighting for!!! Peep the tracks!

(more…)

 
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TSL Events Presents: “Sole Spotlight” Live Concert Series

Join TSL for it’s “SOLE Spotlight Live” concert series where we celebrate the heart and soul of music. This event promises to be an exciting night filled with Boston’s most talented young musicians performing incredible R&B, Hip Hop, and Soul music. Don’t miss this opportunity to visit one of Boston’s most exciting new concert series of 2013!

Age: 18+

NO DRESS CODE.

Performers: Dorian, Notoriety Music, Kaylah Green, DJ P*Franchize

$8 in advance at CAFE939.COM
$10 @ the door with TSL Gear
$15 at the door

LIKE The Solefull Lounge FOLLOW @solefull_lounge
VISIT www.tslsole.com

 
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Buyer Beware: 8 UNHEALTHY “Health” Foods

All too often, people are fooled by misleading food labels or ads that boast about how “healthy” their product is. If only you knew that “no sugar-added” or “all natural” aren’t always all they’re cracked up to be. Below I’ve compiled a list of the top “healthy” foods you may want to rethink.

Fruit Smoothies

We hear fruit and we think it’s healthy right?? Well a lot of fruit smoothies are made with a sugary yogurt or juice base that is far from healthy and can often contain as much, if not more sugar than a serving of soda. Not to mention, these smoothies can be packed with way more than a normal serving of fruit, loading on the calories.

Strawberry smoothie

Salads

You want to be careful with this one because depending on the lettuce or other green leafies used along with toppings, a very healthy salad can quickly become extremely unhealthy. Iceberg lettuce for example, has pretty much little to no nutritional value. What’s more, is people will often pack on cheese, dressing, salty deli meats, fried chicken, croutons, and other bready toppings. Steer clear of all this and stick to light dressings like balsamic vinegar, or even lemon juice. Sometimes if you have a delicious blend of vegetables, you wont need any dressing at all!

salad

Yogurt

While yogurt is certainly a great source of proteincalciumvitamin D, and probiotics for a healthy digestive system, they can also be loaded with sugar, some even contain over 30 grams! This is a big red flag! Skip the sugar yogurt and choose unsweetened yogurt, then add some of your favorite berries or other fruit to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Yogurt

“No-Sugar Added”

This one can be tricky because at first glance, you may think, “fabulous, it doesn’t have sugar!”, but in reality, there are naturally occurring sugars, and A LOT of them. Take fruit juices for example. Often times there won’t be any sugar added, but that doesn’t make drinking juice better. A cup here or there won’t kill you, but when you have 2,3,4,5 and more glasses of juice a day, those naturally occurring sugars (and calories) add up, providing very limited and sometimes no other nutritional benefits. Try squeezing some lemon or lime into some chilled water. This is a very thirst quenching option.

Nutrition, Protein & Breakfast Bars

This one’s a doozie. Many people grab these in the morning when they’re on the go, thinking they are eating a decent breakfast when in fact these can add a ton of fatcaloriescarbs, and sugar to your diet. Great way to start the day right? Wrong! Steer clear of these as much as you can and opt for fresh non-processed food for breakfast like a boiled egg, and some fresh fruit.

Energy bar isolated on white background

Condiments

Often times, when used in their appropriate serving size, condiments won’t break your healthy diet, but you’d be surprised how easy it is to go WAY over the recommended serving size. Hummus is a big. It can be a great option when you stick to 1 or 2 tbsp, but start going over and the calories really add up. Ketchup and even barbecue sauce can add a lot more sugar than you bargain for, while tomato sauce adds sugar and lots of calories. Watch your condiment usage with a close eye or find healthier alternatives!

condiments

All Natural

The term naturalis not regulated by the government so companies can use this term pretty loosely, marketing products as natural that have no business being described as such. My advice? Do your research before-hand so you know exactly what is going into the product your buying. You’ll often find there’s nothing natural about it!

Granola

Granola can be a great source of fiber, healthy fats, & omega 3′s, but it is also very calorie dense. The serving size is generally pretty small, but people tend to go way over this limit, packing on the calories and sugar. Stick to the serving size or skip it altogether.

granola

What do you do to avoid these health traps?

~ Brown & Coconut 
Check us out at www.brownandcoconut.com

 
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Femme Fatales: UK Version

It has surpassed midnight and this is when the fashion police is on the prowl to hunt their honorable and worthy victims. Spanning out to the very avant-garde and artistic UK-fashion world, TSL extols these females for their outward appearance and ability to rock whatever they wear with swagger, might and grace.

Round of applause for UK songstress, Bebe Black, who specializes in the enticing vintage era of the ’80s. She does a splendid job of pairing it with a modern edge of the ’90s whilst rocking a short, quirky cut. You can find more of her cutting-edge style on her official Facebook page.

Prepare yourself when UK femcee, RoxXxan, brutally murders spasmodic beats and the fashion realm with her feisty self. She rocks out with the backpack and after school special in such vibrant attire. Google her and be inspired by her risqué; take caution as you will want to take vigorous notes for the ‘back-to-school’ buffet. Now show this cool cat, ROtripleX, some props for taking it back.


Onto our next victim of the hour, we shall introduce Aluna Francis from that electronic duo AlunaGeorge. The vocalist, Aluna, has captured the hearts and eyes of thousands including her partner-in-art, George Reid. Her laid style, that is at times complimentary to her ladylike comportment, has indeed caught mine. The best part of it all is she will unabashedly strut down the red carpet of a highly acclaimed fashion show in, kindly cueing drum roll, SNEAKERS! Well, Queen Aluna, the fashion police bow to your spirit.

This poster child for goth-pop has taught us anything is possible, even through a nuclear time. Charli XCX screams, Cruel Intentions, with a dash of Spice Girls. Essentially, she vibes with the school girl couture whilst keeping her bad girl rep intact. Well done, Charli. You have reached what it is to be an angel in every aspect.

The states have yet to furnish what London has perfected. These English babes have it all; the talent, personalities including the gear! This is the first installment of what TSL likes to call ‘Femme Fatales.’ Tweet to us @solefull_lounge and/or @farrahevita for women in the game killing it in all ways.

TSL BONUS: 

Listen to Drake’s “All Me” in the meantime to uplift your spirits while selecting your wardrobe. 2 Chainz, Big Sean and the chalice-lesque beat will definitely add more than enough ‘swag’ to your day.

 

 
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Ladies & Gentleman: Say BYE BYE Razor Bumps!

We’ve all experienced razor bumps at one point or another, guys and girls alike, whether it be on legs, under-arms, face, neck, or down-under. They’re unsightly, annoying, and can even painful!

Razor bumps are simply ingrown hairs that develop as a result of a clogged follicular opening (aka: pore) or a hair follicle that curls around and renters the skin.

Dirt & bacteria get trapped in the pore and BLOCK the hair follicle from breaking through causing a pimple to form, bringing about redness and inflammation. These ingrown hairs can also form when hairs grow out but curl back around and reenter the skin. Our bodies recognize this hair as a “foreign object” and attack it. This is what also causes irritation.

Factors that contribute to ingrown hairs are:

  1. Dry Skin: Dead skin cells can get caught in your pores and interrupt hair growth
  2. Improper Shaving Techniques: Several factors like the type of razor you use, improperly prepping your skin, and after-care can all affect your chances of developing razor bumps.
  3. Genetics: People with curly hair are predisposed to getting razor bumps because the hair curls as it grows so its easier for the hair to curl back around and reenter the skin.
  4. Poor Hygiene: Dirt and bacteria can clog pores and cause inflammation, redness, & itching

man shaving

So how do you prevent razor bumps??

  1. First things first! Before you shave, make sure you wash your skin thoroughly! While washing, I also like to do a gentle exfoliation to get rid of any dead skin cells along with dirt and bacteria. This way, your skin is clean BEFORE your pores become vulnerable. Continuing to exfoliate even after shaving is important to make sure those pores STAY CLEAR! You can use a wash cloth and some warm water and your favorite face cleanser, rubbing in circular motions, or you can use a face cleanser with a chemical exfoliant like glycolic or lactic acid, for example.
  2. Be sure you are using a sharp blade.
  3. Try a razor with fewer blades. The more blades on the razor, the grater the chance of ingrown hairs.
  4. Use warm water & shaving creamsoap or gel. Also, try to shave after your skin & hair has had sometime to “soften up” from the warm water (ie: at the END of your shower, bath, etc)
  5. Shave with fewer strokes and short strokes but don’t shave over the same area twice!Young woman shaving legs
  6. Shave in the direction that your hair grows, NOT the opposite.
  7. Rinse your blade after every stroke.
  8. Be sure to MOISTURIZE properly after shaving. This will prevent any new dry skin cells from accumulating and blocking your pores. Also, be sure you are using a moisturizer that isn’t going to block those beautiful pores. Look for non-pore clogging ingredients (aka: non-comedogenic)
  9. Avoid touching your freshly shaven skin with dirty hands. This is mainly in regards to your face, as your hands are one of the dirtiest places on your body and will only transfer more dirtbacteria, & oil onto your vulnerable skin & pores.
  10. Try bathing soon after physical exercise or vigorously sweating. Wear cleandry clothes, & change your pillow cases REGULARLY!

Give these tips a shot then come back and let us know how they worked for you! :)

- Brown & Coconut
www.brownandcoconut.com 

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Forget Fast Food: Health Starts at Home!

We love sandwiches of all shapes and sizes: paninis, subs, burgers etc. They taste delicious and are easy to make. Our biggest concern is eating sandwiches we didn’t make at home. We wonder, what am I really consuming? How much sodium? How much saturated fat? Any trans fats? (We hope not!).

So, what do we do to still eat yummy sandwiches without the nasty ingredients, you ask? Make them at home! One of our favorite homemade sandwiches to make is a delicious Spinach & Avocado Sandwich with egg & turkey. Yummy right?…read on!

spinach avocado sandwich

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 slices of whole wheat bread
  • 1 cup baby spinach
  • 1 egg (with or without egg yolk)
  • 1 slice of Turkey
  • 1/4 cup avocado

ingredients

On toasted bread layer the spinach, turkey, egg and avocado. Feel free to mash some of the avocado to spread on the bread. Oh yes! Don’t forget your pickles! :)

Nutritional Information:

This sandwich is only about 300 calories (more or less depending on the amount of avocado & turkey you add). More than half the calories of sandwiches from fastfood chains like Quiznos, Arby’s, & Burger King can have 1000+ calories. It contains 18g protein, 13g fat (healthy fats), 12g sugar, and about 500mg of sodium (more than half the sodium compared to fast food chains that have up to 2000mg sodium per sandwich (this amount can easily be reduced by not adding the turkey or egg).

What’s your favorite homemade sandwich? Comment below!

Peace, love and coconuts!

- Brown & Coconut
www.brownandcoconut.com

 
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Brown & Coconut’s Healthy Living Tips: It’s Snack Time!!

We often hear that snacking can lead to the dreaded and feared weight gain, but I don’t think the issue lies with snacking itself, rather it’s what you are snacking on that makes the biggest difference.

The snacks that generally encourage unhealthy weight gain, higher cholesterol, higher blood pressure, and many other problems, are the usual suspects: junk food. It’s that couple of handfuls of candies, high-sodium chips, and super high calorie smoothies/shakes (just to name a few) that can really can add up.

The good news is that there are so many snacks that help curb cravings and keep you satisfied between meals.

#1. Avocado & Tortilla Chips

avocado-71567_640

Avocado (B&C’s Favorite Ingredient of the month!) is smoothcreamy, and full of heart healthy fat that can help to keep you satisfied. Pair it with some tasty tortilla chips (that are made from natural ingredients and low in sodium & sugar) to cure that craving for something crunchy.

#2. Nuts/Seeds & Dark Chocolate

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This snack may appeal to your sweet senses. If you have a craving for something sweet and are still trying to not overdose on sugar then opt for quality dark chocolate, which tends to be lower in sugar & fat content. Similar to the avocados, the nuts/seed will help to keep you satiated and pair very well with chocolate.

#3. Oranges

orange-15046_640

This has to be one of the most perfect snacks! A few reasons oranges are great…

  • Easy to grab-on-the-go
  • The fruit is protected by its peel
  • You don’t feel as though you need a beverage to wash it down,
  • It contains dietary fiber (helps to keep you fuller longer, & is good for your digestive tract)
  • The sugar content (naturally occurring) and vitamins C& B are wonderful for re-energizing you.

#4. Baked Zucchini and Sweet Potato Sticks

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If you’re looking for a heavier snack then this is the one for you! Sweet potatoes are filled with fiber and will definitely help with hunger and give you energy. Just slice up one zucchini and sweet potato add some seasoning of your choice, bake in the oven and enjoy!

#5. Vegan Smoothie

juice-114628_640

Many smoothies claim to be “healthy” however if you read the nutrition label and ingredients you can see that most are filled with just fruityogurt, and a sweetener. It sounds great, BUT these smoothies are very high in sugar. Yes, some is from fruit, however, it is important to moderate consumption of fruits. Think about it this way – are you really able to eat (as in chew) 1 cup of blueberries, 2 apples, 1 orange, 1 ½ bananas, and some yogurt in one sitting? Aside from the few exceptions, probably not. So, why in liquid form is it okay to drink all of this?

Also, smoothies can be very heavy due to the added milk products. Try opting for a homemade or freshly made smoothie that combines fruit, vegetables, and perhaps some protein.

Voilà! There are your 5 healthy snacks for your enjoyment. Snack away!

Peace, Love, & Coconuts.

- Brown & Coconut

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Fresh Fridays ft. Lulu James!

Every Friday, we will be posting a novel party themed artist and/or DJ to feature in each genre. Being that it is Pride week in Boston, we are proud to present Lulu James. Hailing from South Shields in the UK, James amongst many other London blokes have been stealing the hearts of the United States since the premiere of The Beatles. Talent is inevitable in England and we, without a doubt, accept it ferociously and vigorously! James soul and house infused style has grabbed the attention of her current record label, Black Butter, as well as ours! She is a mere 21 years old and probably will never fit that ‘starving artist’ description as she already has a solid following that is bound to increase!

- Soundcloud

- Facebook

- Twitter

 
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Brown & Coconut: Allow us to Introduce Ourselves!…

Greetings TSL Nation!

Allow us to introduce ourselves! We are the creators of Brown & Coconut, a health, fitness, nutrition, and beauty blog rooted in natural and organic remedies.

We are so excited to be partnering up with The Solefull Lounge to bring awareness to simple and natural remedies for beauty, health and fashion needs.

As three sisters who share a love for natural and healthy living, we created Brown & Coconut to share with the world, our passion for treating the mind, body, and soul with the upmost care.

We look forward to sharing our tips, tricks, techniques, and experiences with you as we continue on our lifelong journey to a healthier, happier lifestyle!

- Letisha, Nalani, Zeena
www.brownandcoconut.com

 
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