Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Do black people really need sun protection?

“Black people don’t need to wear sun-protection right?!” 

This is definitely that I had believed until recently. I remember going on holiday and buying any SPF 30-50 sunscreen I could find, not to protect my skin from some of the harmful rays of the sun but to stop my face from getting darker, I wanted to come back from holiday and not be subjected to my foundation now turning into a highlighter! It has only been in recent months that I have begun to be exposed to the real truths about black skin and sun damage.

Let’s start by discussing the differences between caucasian skin and black skin varying from the lightest to the darkest of skin tones. The difference is only in the cells which actually produce our skins pigmentation- also known as melanin. The distribution of melanin is what varies in skin tones. More melanin accounts for the darkened skin tones. The extra melanin in black skin offers a better natural defence against the sun but this does not mean total defence. Research has shown that the maximum amount of protection black skin provides does not exceed 20 minutes and that sun over-exposure causes problems such as dryness and dark spots which can lead to long term ski damage. In fact many of the skin issues we face, such as uneven skin tone, hyper-pigmentation and slower healing time (particularly for scars) is primarily a result of sun damage. Even though it takes longer and for visible damage to occur on darker skin, sun damage is always greater on skin that’s exposed to sun than skin that’s properly protected no matter what you skin colour is. 

As someone who lives in London we do not get intense heat all year around however, we forget that it’s the sun that actually provides light so essentially we are exposed to the sun and its harmful rays every day. I remember reading somewhere that as long as you have windows with direct sunlight coming through you need to have sun protection, therefore sun protection should be a part of your everyday routine, especially your face. Now this might seem a bit extreme but when you actually look at the science behind it, it makes sense. The sun’s radiation includes ultraviolet rays. UVA and UVB which both cause damage to our skin UVA rays penetrate deeper into the dermis, the skin's thickest and deepest layer. This is what leads to premature skin aging and wrinkling, and suppression of the immune system. UVB rays will usually burn the more surface areas of our skin. It plays a key role in the development of keloidal, melanoma and even sun cancer. Even when it’s cold or cloudy up to 40% of the suns radiation reaches the earth. This misperception often leads to the most damage, therefore good sun protection needs to be worn all year round- come rain or shine. Adverse environmental effects also means that it’s not good news for our skin; the atmospheres ozone layer which shields the earth from a lot of the UV radiation from the sun is starting to deplete causing more of the radiation to reach us here on earth. Popular chemical resurfacing treatments also leave the skin more prone to the harmful effects of the sun!

The great news is there is lots of protection available out there and brown skin friendly products are increasing becoming available, just be educated and know what to look out for Sun Protection Factor (SPF) is a measurement of how well a sunscreen will protect skin from UVB rays. If your skin would normally burn after 10 minutes in the sun, for example, wearing an SPF 15 sunscreen would theoretically allow you to stay in the sun for 150 minutes (10 x 15) without burning. This is a rough estimate, however, and your own skin, the type of activity you do in the sun (i.e. one involving water or sweat), and the intensity of sunlight may give you more or less safety. Also make sure that you are getting products that protect from both UVA and UVB radiation. Avoid ones that contain lots of zinc or titanium oxide that make the formulations bright white, leaving the skin looking blue/grey.

Overall I have realised that sun protection needs to be an essential part of my daily skin routine to protect and nourish my skin especially in this day and age where our is exposed to a lot more radiation and the effects of chemical based products! Some may say that this is all a bit too much and that our ancestors, grandmas and grandpas have done fine without it. I say yes that’s true but I ancestors also lived without many of the things that we have access to now. If you have access to it I say use it and remember prevention is ALWAYS better than cure.

Here are some great choices for black skin:

XO Verified Beauty

Note: I have no affiliates with any of the above brands
Image credits: Guardian Images


Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Tuesday Ten: How to develop a consistent pamper and self-care routine:

  1. Set out time in your week dedicated to pampering and taking care of yourself; whether it’s half a day or a few hours or maybe you can assign a whole day to it. This time will consist of body scrubs, face masks, oiling, pampering your feet and nails and this is all aimed to really do a deep cleanse leaving your skin in supple condition and getting you ready for the week ahead.                                                                                                                                                             
  2. Reflection time- Do an evaluation of your whole body, what your skin likes and dislikes, what are some of the skin problems that you need to resolve. Also there may be some areas that you have neglected whether it is your teeth, skin, hair removal routine etc. be an expert in your body, skin and self.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
  3. Figure out the self-care that you are going to pay for and get done in a salon and the ones that you are going to do yourself.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
  4. Do not overlook things like going to the doctors, dentist, opticians these are very important especially to check up on your overall health. Ideally you should be having check-ups every 6 months.                                                                                                                                             
  5. Research the products that you are going to need for your pamper sessions.                                                                                                                                                                                           
  6. Make sure that you research the brands that you want to invest in, here's a guide on how to do so.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
  7. Go ahead and buy all the products you are going to need.                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
  8. Planning and preparation is vital, so decide what treatments you are going to do on that day. Also decide on your facial cleansing routine for the week too. Whether you are going to do certain masks on certain days or use different cleansers on different days make sure you make a note of this and most importantly stick to what you have decided.                                                                                                                                                                                                           
  9. Remember that success is the by-product of consistency, so if you want your skin to be a certain way don't focus on the results but on actually making sure that you are doing what you need to do and that you're doing it well!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  10. Remember that routines and consistency is about regular small steps, small changes can make big difference down the line. Take care of your self while you still can!

This post was inspired by this video from Sunkissalba:

XO Verified Beauty

Friday, 8 July 2016

Friday Favourites:

A round up of the weeks favs:

Favourite natural product: I used this bentonite healing clay as a cleanser for my hair and I loved the results, review soon!

Favourite instagram page of the week: @thetimelessclassic,, I am such a minimalist so I love minimalistic pieces that I can pair up with anything & that doesn't expire after one season!


Favourite Website Beejo LDN: I came across this online contemporary/urban hand-made baby and toddler store and I absolutely love it. Again for all you chic, classic, minimalist mothers out there this is for you (Don't say I don't look out for you!). If I had a child I would definitely dress he/she up in this collection.All handmade and 100% cotton.

 Favourite Quote: Much needed reminder this week, because sometimes you have to face the truth...

Favourite Video: We are a bit late but this is a great video from one of my fav Youtuber Sunkissalba on DIY skin hacks..I must say its fantastic!

XO VBeauty

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Review: Farsali 24k Rose Gold Elixir

I've had the Farsali 24k Rose Gold Elixir for a while now and I'm only getting around to reviewing it now, since then it has literally blown all over Instagram, with every blogger using it! I'm going to review it as a moisturiser as I'm yet to add it to my make-up routine (I’m currently obsessed with the matte look). The brand was founded by YouTuber Farah Dhukai and her husband. I have been watching Farah Dhukai on YouTube for years now- she does some great DIY’s, so when she released her own skincare brand I knew it was going to be fantastic! This is the second product in their skincare range, with the Volcanic Elixir night oil being the debut release from Farsali (I'm yet to try that one). I was in awe when the beauty oil was first advertised by Farsali. I fell in love with the sound and look of the product even before I got my hands on it. A beauty oil with 24k gold infusions?!  It was love at first thought! I also absolutely love the way they have marketed the product as “beauty meets luxury”- it definitely has that luxury feel and smell (I will come on to that later) about it! I have been using this as my summer night oil and I have used it as a daytime moisturiser too. I have combination skin, when I first got the product my skin was not in a great place I was breaking out a lot, my skin was also blemish prone and I did not have a steady routine as a result my skin did not take very well to the product. I think my break outs were being caused by a number of factors way before I bought the Rose Gold Elixir so I'm not blaming the oil but I don’t think it helped my skin either. Therefore I would only suggest using this product when your skin is stable and as part of a stable tried and tested skin routine. I would not use it to combat a break out, on severely acne prone skin or while your skin is in a sensitive stage. Now that my skin is more stable I am able to use it without any problems.

The base of this beauty product is Rosehip oil; here are the benefits as stated on the website:

  • Great lightweight moisturiser suitable for all skin types
  • Anti-aging benefits 
  • High in vitamin C and A (retinol)
  • Reduces the appearance of fine lines, hyperpigmentation and stretch marks
  • Can be used as a hydrating primer before applying make-up

  • The ingredients are amazing. Farsali is a naturally inspired brand, free from harmful chemicals and the ingredients in this oil are just divine. Ingredients: Rosehip Seed Oil, Pumpkin Seed Oil, 24k Gold, Vitamin E, Lemongrass Oil, Orange Peel Oil
  • I absolutely love the smell of this oil- it has a citrus smell from the lemongrass oil and orange peel ingredients, but it’s not too strong or over powering and can I say that it smells like luxury!
  • Love the 24k infusion and how it looks in the oil, very pretty! Im definitely someone who is won over  by aesthetics 
  • Easily absorbed into skin and doesn’t leave a greasy finish, my skin felt supple after applying
  • Nut free so suitable for those with nut allergies 
  • Doesn’t have great anti-inflammatory properties as I was not able to use as a when my skin had broken out and when it was sensitive

I haven’t used the oil consistently enough to say how it works on hyperpigmentation and other skin issues but as a moisturiser it is great and very hydrating.

Verdict Yay or Nay: Yay

XO VBeauty

Tuesday, 5 July 2016

Tuesday Ten: 10 ways to get focus back into your life!

Hey guys so it's been a while but we are back in action! As we are back this is a very fitting post, I must say…

So we are  halfway through the year already! Although we never know what life is going to throw at us we can aim to be as focused and as prepared as possible. I have learnt that it’s really easy to get side tracked and before you know it off-track so here are 10 ways to get back in gear for the next 6 months! Set out a whole day to really align your thinking and actions to get back on track.

  1. Realign with your values, goals and motivations. Have some projects been abandoned, go back and revisit them remind yourself of your 'why', set goals to move forward                                                                                                                                                                                                               
  2. Write down what it will actually take to fulfil your goals, so what it will take physically and mentally and start to prepare yourself                                                                                                                                                                                                                          
  3. Remember that discipline is more important than motivation. Motivation is temporary whereas developing consistent, routine habits and sticking to them is definitely has more long term consequences.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            
  4. Identify what has taken your attention, identify your distractions and list them. Identify what triggers those distractions to occur and prepare yourself for when they do try and take your attention.                                                                                                                                           
  5. Remind yourself and write down all the reasons why you can’t give up                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  6. Don’t isolate yourself, stay connected and even reconnect with people with good energy who can uplift and motivate you                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
  7. Get active and stay active! Exercise has such great benefits. Remember whatever you do keep at it, however small it may be, get into a routine because it’s always harder to start again once you have had a long break and it will get easier.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
  8. Take time out daily to reflect and think about your focus.                                                                                                                                                                                                                         
  9. Take time out weekly to recuperate and pamper yourself.                                                                                                                                                                                                                         
  10. Remember that things don’t just happen, yes achieving your goals is going to be hard but you might as well prepare yourself for the joys and the pain and give it all you’ve got!

XO VBeauty 


Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Tuesday Ten: 10 Food-blogs that we love!

Calling all foodies and aspiring foodies!

Recently my love for cooking has increased, so I thought this would be the perfect time to share the blogs that I currently love. Also, most of these vlogs are health-conscious too!

Kezia’s Kookbook: from breakfast ideas to food hauls to full blown meals, Kezia Kookbook is simple but effective and that’s what we like! She got a great user-friendly jollof rice recipe too!

Hungry Happens: is the I don’t think I'll be able to sing its praises enough. There are endless, yummy food ideas and most of it's made up of healthy ingredients or healthy alternatives without compromising on the taste even the desserts!  Yes please!

Kess Kravings: (They also have a free app called “Kravings”) I love this blog and Instagram page! It has it all, appetisers, lunch, snacks and dessert ideas and so much creativity!

Livias Kitchen: Love her range of healthy desserts and meals, all guilt-free and perfect if you suffer from food allergies or intolerances.

Afro Lems: So I discovered Afrolems through Kezia’s Kookbook and can I say how great this blog is! This blog is the home of the best Nigerian and African food with an international twist! Yum!

Lexi’s clean kitchen:  Gluten-free, dairy-free and paleo-friendly, this scrumptious blog is a super healthy treat.

Nina’s Kitchen: this one is a bit of a cheat, as it’s not really a food blog but more of an Instagram page and service provider. Check out the website for catering for events. I literally can’t go on this Instagram page without my mouth watering!

Aftrad Village Kitchen: Great blog for my Africans! Featuring easy-to-follow recipes if you are craving good traditional food.

Druid St. Market again this is another cheat but I am just in love. Druid street market is a food market in Bermondsey, London selling fresh produce and street food, every Sat from 10am-4pm! I haven't visited YET but their Instagram is enough to send you into a food coma!

Last but not least Instagrams “foodblogfeed” is a great choice for widespread  foodspiration!

XO VBeauty

Photo credits: pinterest


Friday, 29 April 2016

Friday Favourites

Welcome back to Friday favourites! Here's what's been inspiring VB this week. Cheers to the weekend!

Favourite Drink: Nari Juice! This drink amazing, it's palm juice infused with 100% natural fruit and spice extracts and with no added sugars or preservatives its a fantastic natural choice!
Check out for more info:

Favourite Website: Came across this website this week and I'm loving the content! is an online lifestyle magazine featuring news and views on the latest and most desirable fashion, beauty, wellness and lifestyle products, brands and destinations!

Favourite Quote: Love this!

Favourite Video: I'm absolutely loving chokers atm, so when I came across YouTuber Farah Dhukai's DIY tutorial I was very excited

What are some of your weekly favs and inspirations?

XO VBeauty

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