Only The Beginning….

Wow. Just wow. 2018 Fall Semester is almost over. Only one more semester until I graduate. I cannot believe it. Time truly flies by when you’re having a good time. Being in my twenties, about to finish college I have realized that my life is just getting started. There is so much ahead that I still have to experience and accomplish. In the past, as I’ve noted, was not always easy. I grew up in a social environment around women who did not look like me. I questioned my own beauty. Truthfully, I questioned a lot. Not only through the help of my mother, who is a beautiful black woman who I obviously learned and still am learning a lot from, I also looked to the media and fashion industry for other role models. When I was younger and still to this day, my goal was to always look up to unapologetic women because, in reality, that is who I aspired to be. Some of the women who I mentioned in my blog, Sophia Bush, Issa Rae, Jada Pinkett Smith, and many others were women who are always unapologetically themselves. These women are known for their strength, selflessness, and dedication to making the world a better place.

Through these women, I learned a lot. Even though I do not personally know these women, I see through the media the love they have for others but most importantly, the love they have for themselves. Expressing my feelings and aspirations on KiKiLovesYou helped me tremendously as a person. It sure did take some time to truly feel comfortable in my own skin but it is was worth every minute. I am now finally able to be unapologetically myself. One of my favorite quotes, that I like to remind myself every day is “Even if it makes others uncomfortable, I will love who I am.”-Janelle Monáe. To me, that quote speaks volumes. It tells me that no matter what others think or feel about me, I will always be who I am and I will ALWAYS love myself. Although, I am comfortable in my skin, every single day I am still learning a lot about myself and I am happy with that. Society always tells us that we have to know who we are or what we’re going to do when we’re only 21 years old. But that is not always the case for everyone. For instance, knowing who you are and what you want to do in life may take others until their late twenties or maybe even thirties. It is important to remember that your life, is YOUR life. You are the one in control and you can do whatever you want to do. So moving forward, I vow to always advocate self-love. I want to end my blog with another one of my favorite quotes by Michelle Obama. A woman who has been my inspiration since 2008 and ALWAYS will be.

“One of the lessons that I grew up with was to always stay true to yourself and never let what somebody else says distract you from your goals. And so when I hear about negative and false attacks, I really don’t invest any energy in them, because I know who I am.”– Michelle Obama.

Always remember, just do YOU and KiKiLovesYou.

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#AllIWantForChristmas♡

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Hello my loves!

December has arrived. That means, it is the most WONDERFUL time of the year and it is time to start counting down the days until Christmas!!! I don’t know about y’all but for me, that means listening to Christmas music. And what better way to get in the holly, jolly spirit than listening to some Mariah Carey. When I say Mariah Carey is everything, SHE IS LITERALLY EVERYTHING. I have followed her since I was about four or five years old. You could catch me dancing around the living room singing her songs with my play microphone. I am pretty sure everyone knows who she is, but for those who do not, Mariah Carey is a singer, songwriter, and actress. Mariah debuted in the 90s and from then on, she was a legend. She is one of the best-selling female artists of all time. Mariah also played a role in hit movies such as Glitter and Precious. Both are amazing movies but still to this day, I could watch Glitter over and over again. Even though the movie did not receive the best reviews, in my eyes it was a hit. So seriously if you have not seen Glitter, please do so and let me know what you think. Anyway, Mariah is now a mother of twins, Moroccan and Monroe and still living her best life.

Since this weeks blog topic is about Mariah Carey, I want to start off with sharing with you guys my favorite Mariah Carey songs of all time.

Emotions (1991) 

Always Be My Baby (1996) 

Don’t Forget About Us (2005) 

Obsessed (2009) 

Now back to the Christmas vibes…

 All I Want For Christmas Is You (1994) 

Mariah’s Christmas songs definitely lighten the mood and overall just make me so excited for the holidays. So although Mariah’s singing ability is inspiring, there are many other reasons I admire her. One of the reasons is because of her persona. When I was younger, I swore Mariah was perfect aka like she wasn’t human. She was just so stunning, her vocals were out of this world, and most importantly she resembled the definition of a strong ass woman. She was always very classy but at the same time, people knew not to cross her. I loved that about her. Growing up, that’s how I wanted to be as a woman. Another reason I admire Mariah is for her openness to her fans. Mariah recently opened up with the world about her diagnosis of Bipolar II Disorder. She was diagnosed in 2001 and decided to recently open up about her mental health struggles. In a story with People Magazine, Mariah emphasizes, “I’m just in a really good place right now, where I’m comfortable discussing my struggles with bipolar II disorder. I’m hopeful we can get to a place where the stigma is lifted from people going through anything alone. It can be incredibly isolating. It does not have to define you and I refuse to allow it to define me or control me.” In my opinion, what she said was remarkable. I truly commend individuals opening up about the mental health struggles that they face on a daily basis.

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While I only named a few reasons why I admire Mariah Carey, there are obviously many more. She is truly an icon and will always remain inspiring in my eyes. Now it is time to get back to jamming out to her Christmas playlist. Happy Holidays everyone!

 

All About Issa Rae

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Issa Rae, a force to be reckoned with and for that reason, I have always admired her. The first time I came across Issa Rae was a couple years ago, when I decided to watch her hit series Insecure. I had heard AMAZING reviews so I was really excited. I was so excited that I watched the entire first season in a day. I fell in love with the show and from then on, I was a HUGE Issa Rae fan. I actually mentioned Issa in my second blog post that discussed her stance on diversity and inclusion but truthfully I felt like my blog post did not do her enough justice. For those of you who do not know, Issa Rae is a writer, producer, and actress. She gained attention on Youtube from her hit web-series Awkward Black Girl. After her hit web-series, she began working on Insecure. Issa stars in the show that follows her and her best friend, Molly as they travel through life dealing with their insecurities and the difficulties that arise in relationships and work. For anyone who has never seen this show, I recommend you do so. But beware, once you start, you will not be able to stop. So here’s the trailer for Season one:

While, I really enjoyed her show, there are many other reasons why I view Issa as a role model.

She is extremely inspiring 

Issa Rae has accomplished SO much in the past years. Creating a web series to writing a best-selling novel, The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl, and then having a hit TV show. She has really done it all and to me, that is very remarkable. In an interview with the Atlantic, Issa Rae shared that, “In high school and college, the only representation of black women I saw was on reality television. And so to have this renaissance— to be alongside so many amazing content creators and actors of color— feels very optimistic. We’re so aware of what it’s like to not have those images; we’re clinging onto them.” Issa was able to create a show that is just a “regular story about black people”. I find that really inspiring because growing up I did not see shows like Insecure on TV. So for me, Insecure is refreshing in the sense that I get to see similarities of my own life through the show.

She is unapologetic and very relatable

Like she really is… and I LOVE that about her. She does what she wants to do. She keeps it real. Issa Rae is really a mood. Seriously guys just watch this interview and you will understand:

She does not try to act a certain way. She has no problem showing her awkwardness or insecurities with the world. In the interview, when she mentioned that she is “afraid of upsetting people.” As soon as she said that, I was like THATS ME, THATS ME. I can sometimes be a people pleaser but I have realized that really does not get you anywhere. And sometimes, it is necessary to remember  “Don’t be afraid to be a bitch” like Issa advised.

So thank you Issa Rae for being YOU. You really are a role model.

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Jada Pinkett Smith

 

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Jada Pinkett Smith has been around for decades. If you do not know her, she is an actress, singer, businesswoman, philanthropist, mother, and wife. This woman is seriously everything, and I have always admired her. The first time I saw Jada on my television screen was when I was watching The Nutty Professor. Overall, I think I have literally seen The Nutty Professor a million times. My older sisters were obsessed with the movie and I just watched whatever they did as a child. Another popular film that she was in back in the day was Set it Off with Queen Latifah and Vivica A. Fox. While The Nutty Professor and Set it Off are from the mid-90s aka before our time, she was also the voice of Gloria the hippo from Madagascar. Madagascar was seriously THAT movie and Gloria is the reason I am obsessed with hippos. Like seriously, Gloria was so sassy and funny I just imagined every hippo to be like her. Jada also appeared in some other hit shows and movies such as Gotham, Bad Moms, and Girls Trip. If you have not seen either one of those shows or movies, seriously go watch them. Out of the three, Girls Trip is my favorite. That movie was absolutely hilarious, I laughed the entire time.

Although I have always admired Jada, more recently because of her new Facebook show Red Table Talk my admiration of her grew even stronger. Red Table Talk is a television talk show hosted by Jada, her mother Adrienne Banfield-Norris, and her daughter Willow Smith. The first episode premiered on May 7 of this year and let me tell you after I watched the first episode was addicted. They discuss an abundance of topics such as family, love, loss, and sex. Some of their conversations are the most eye-opening conversations I have ever experienced. Around the red table, Jada holds nothing back. Here’s actually one of my favorite episodes of the show:

I still get goosebumps every time I watch this episode because it is just so phenomenal. Two grown women are finally coming together to discuss over 17 years of pettiness that kept them from being friends. They discuss all of the trials and tribulations they had to face with their inner self to finally be able to be happy. To finally be able to grow and heal. Still, this episode speaks volumes. When we are young, friendships and relationships can be very challenging. For me, I have had to deal with many losses of people who I had considered very close friends because of unnecessary petty drama. I have participated in trying to put others down for my own happiness. However, as I have gotten older, I started to really take time for myself so I can truly be comfortable in my own skin. I have heard from my mother plenty of times that, how can you love someone, if you truly do not love yourself? Once I decided to actually make a change in my life, I have seen results that I am extremely happy about in my relationship and friendships. Yet watching the Red Table Talk makes me want to continue striving to be the better me. So thank YOU, Jada Pinkett Smith, for creating such a beautiful show.

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Reasons Why Zendaya is THAT girl

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Hi, my loves! It’s Kiana here.

If you ever watched the Disney Channel show Shake It Up or saw the Marvel film Spider-Man: Homecoming, or maybe even jammed out to the song Replay about five years ago, I am sure you know who Zendaya is. She is absolutely everything and honestly if you have not seen either one of those films or listened to her song Replay go do it now seriously. In all honesty, I still jam out to Replay. It is definitely still a hit in my books. Also, when I was younger, I never missed an episode of Shake It Up. I would watch it with my little sister and we would attempt to learn the dances. Zendaya is not only a singer and actress, but she is also known for her activism. Recently, she has also named the new face of Tommy Hilfiger. Although she is only a year older than me, I have always admired her and thought of her as a role model. Here are a couple of reasons why she is one of the most influential celebrities today and why I adore her so much.

SHE STANDS UP FOR WHAT SHE BELIEVES IN
Zendaya has always remained true to who she is. She has also remained vocal about women’s rights and racial inequality. If you follow her on social media, you will see her expressing her opinions and sharing photos/videos of her marching on Washington. You will also see her sharing photos that express her support of the Black Lives Matter Movement and encouraging individuals to get out and vote.

In 2015, Zendaya responded back to Giuliana Rancic, former Fashion Police host, who stated that Zendaya’s dreadlocks looked like they smelled of “weed” and “patchouli oil”. Zendaya responded back with saying, “There is a fine line between what is funny and disrespectful. Someone said something about my hair at the Oscars that left me in awe.” Below is Zendaya’s full response.

As a black woman, I have always been faced with criticism about my hair. Growing up I always wore braids, whereas my female and male counterparts did not. I was constantly judged and made fun of for my hairstyles, just because it was different. Reading Zendaya’s post was inspiring. She reminded me that you should always stick up for yourself and fight against the stereotypes.

SHE PROMOTES BODY POSITIVITY
Another reason I love Zendaya is that she speaks up against body-shammers. Because for real body shammers are the absolute worst. A couple of years ago, Zendaya actually posted on Instagram a side by side photo of herself. One of the photos reflecting her true self and the other manipulated by a magazine who decided to photoshop her photo. In response, Zendaya decided to call out the magazine. Here is what she said:

Her response was really eye-opening. In today’s society, we automatically assume that every celebrity is “perfect”. But in reality, they are just like you and me. They have flaws and are also insecure at times. As a young woman seeing her response, was very encouraging because I was able to see that not all celebrities put on a front. They are human, they make mistake, they can feel self-conscious too. Therefore, her response not only opened my eyes to the truth about photoshopping in Hollywood but also that it is important to love yourself and really accept your imperfections no matter what society tells you.

SHE IS VERY RELATABLE
Like so relatable. In an interview she did with Fashion Magazine she stated that “I think I’ve always been a grandma”. “I’ve always been a very old woman inside a younger person’s body. Of course, I have my young-people tendencies; we all have those. But at the end of the day, I’ve always been called a grandma. I don’t like going out. I enjoy the company of my TV and myself. And you know what? It’s been very helpful, honestly.” Girl, same. I live off campus in an apartment but almost every weekend I find myself going home. I am such a homebody. I just love being on my own couch and watching shows with the fam. I will go out every once in a while but in all honesty, the most fun I have is at home.

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So Zendaya, Thank YOU for always being you and being the beautiful role model that you are.

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Halloween…Celebrity Style

Hi, my loves! It’s Kiana here.

So don’t we all just love Halloween? The time to dress up as something we low-key aspire be. Being a college student, I have realized that it can sometimes suck finding an inexpensive Halloween costume, especially if I am trying to go all out. So as a result, I fan girl over some of my favorite celebrities who have the means to be extra on their Halloween costumes. Just like us regular folk, celebrities also enjoy Halloween to dress up and wear costumes because even they have someone they admire and look up to. So here are some of my favorite celebrities who I truly idolize, dressed up in some of my favorite costumes for this SPOOKY holiday.

Rita Ora 

This past weekend, Rita Ora proved that she is a triple threat. Someone that can dominate the music scene, acting scene, and now Halloween. She made a huge statement with her ICONIC Post Malone costume. When I was scrolling through social media, I literally just kept scrolling because I thought that she was the REAL Post Malone. So in my opinion, so far she wins this years best Halloween Costume. Like for real, I was SHOOK. But at the same time, I was amazed because I love Rita and Posty.

Gabrielle Union-Wade

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No. Doubt. @gwenstefani

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This woman is actually everything and her costume this year was AMAZING. Like seriously, she killed it, channeling her inner No Doubt (Just a Girl) Gwen Stefani. While I was not alive when this single came out, I would still dance around with my sisters to it during the early 2000s. Then in 2009 for Christmas, we got the video game Band Hero which had “Just a Girl” and my other favorite No Doubt Song, “Don’t Speak.” So almost every single day we would consistently play these songs. But for real, I have always LOVED Gwen Stefani and I swear her song “Hollaback Girl” is the reason I know how to spell “bananas”. So thank YOU Gabrielle Union-Wade for bringing back those memories.

Adele 

So first off, this woman is absolutely stunning. Second, her voice is unbelievable. Whenever I hear this woman sing, I am amazed. I can literally jam out to her songs wherever and whenever. But most of the time I am screaming Someone Like You at the top of my lungs in the shower. Adele is truly everything and honestly her Halloween costume last year was unforgettable. Many were left puzzled about her costume because she actually never said what she was. Although many speculated, majority of individuals thought she was resembling the iconic witches from Hocus Pocus. And truthfully, I was totally here for it because I love that movie. Every October as a kid, I would watch Hocus Pocus repeatedly and think I was a witch. And even still to this day, Hocus Pocus is one of my favorite Halloween movies ever and I will try to catch it on TV. So even if Adele’s costume remains a mystery, she looked incredible.

Beyoncé 

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Although I already shared with you guys why Beyoncé is one of my favorite celebrities, I just had to include her in this post. Every October 31, this iconic woman blows us away with her breathtaking halloween costumes. One year, Beyoncé and her beautiful daughter, Blue Ivy dressed up as Janet and Michael Jackson. Honestly, their costume were one of the cutest mommy and daughter costumes ever. Another year, Beyoncé channeled her inner black barbie when she dressed up and stepped into the plastic barbie box. When I saw this costume, I automatically thought she wins! She wins! When I was a little girl I was OBSESSED with barbie dolls like seriously obsessed. Every single birthday or holiday I would ask for a barbie. When I tell you I had too many to count, I really I had too many to count. For this reason, I was in love with this costume idea. It is definitely one that is hard to top.

Queen Bey♡

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Hi, my loves! It’s Kiana here.

Bey-FREAKING-oncé….aka Queen Bey has been gracing this earth for 37 years, 13,557 days to be exact. This woman is truly an icon. Born in H-Town, Beyoncé has always been a singer and entertainer but was able to capture the worlds eye by being the lead singer of Destiny’s Child, an R&B girl-group from the late 90s and early 2000s. But 15 years ago, Beyoncé was able to break out as a solo artist and decided to bless us with her first album, Dangerously In Love. And yes, I might have been 6 years old when the album came out but you know dang well I was in my bedroom singing, “Got me looking so crazy, my baby….. I’m not myself; lately, I’m foolish, I don’t do this.” Dangerously in Love was groundbreaking and still to this day, I will jam out to the album as if it came out yesterday. Since then Beyoncé continues to prove to us that she is and will always remain Queen Bey. Through her albums, B’day, I AM… Sasha Fierce, 4, Beyoncé, and Lemonade we got to witness greatness.


Although many know Beyoncé as an entertainer and artist, she has also shown us that she is a significant role model in our society. For as long as I can remember, Beyoncé has always been someone that I truly admired and felt inspired by. She has remained strong and unapologetically herself throughout her career. Through her music, I was not only entertained but exceedingly motivated and confident. One of my favorite lyrics is from her song, Me, Myself, and I, where she sang, “It took me some time. But now I am strong. Because I realized I got, Me myself and I”. If you have not listened to that song, literally stop reading my blog and listen to it. It is life changing and very relatable.

Through these lyrics, I learned a lot about myself. I learned that it is essential to love yourself unconditionally. To remember that no matter what, you can always be your own best friend. Another empowering song by Beyoncé is Pretty Hurts. Again, if you have not heard this song, seriously stop everything you are doing and listen to the song.

In the song, she sings, “Pretty hurts. We shine the light on whatever’s worst. Perfection is a disease of a nation. Pretty hurts, Pretty hurts.” Growing up and even still to this day, there are times when I am chasing after societal standards of beauty. But through these lyrics, I have learned that I am not the only individual who has experienced the feeling of trying to maintain a certain physical perfection. In our society, we are constantly pressured by the beauty standards that society has created for us. We think that if we do not conform to those standards that we are not beautiful. When in reality, we as a society need to remember that beauty truly comes from within. And in Beyoncé’s words, “It’s the soul that needs surgery.”

Even though Beyoncé is labeled as the Queen, she still continues to show us that she is human and goes through life struggles just like the rest of us. She is a role model we all need in our lives. Beyoncé not only represents strength, independence, and fearlessness, she reminds us that, “Who run the world? Girls.”