This Valedictorian's Principal Wouldn't Let Him Give an Acceptance Speech, but the Mayor Did

Jaisaan Lovett
By Erickka Sy Savané

You work harder than you've ever worked in your young life, staying home to study while your friends are out doing things that kids do, and it pays off. You become the first African American valedictorian of your high school school and it's time to give an acceptance speech. Because you know it's all about that speech, thanking those who helped make it happen, dropping those gems...only this part doesn't happen because of run-ins that you've had with the principal in the past. So you're barred from speaking at graduation. I wish this were a made-up story, but it happened to Jaisann Lovett of University Preparatory Charter School for Young Men in Rochester, New York. While his principal- Joseph Munno, who didn't give Jaisann or his family a reason for not allowing him to speak- tried to get the last word, it was Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren who stepped in and gave Jaisaan an opportunity to have his big moment...and luckily we get to see it!

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Review: I Tried the Mega Popular Teeth Whitener Owned By This Multi-Millionaire Mom

Amber Rose and Ramon Griggie of Express Smile Atlanta
By Erickka Sy Savané

When it comes to teeth whitening, the mother of all teeth whitening, at least as far as instagram is concerned, is Express Smile Atlanta (ESA). Go to their page and celebrities like Amber Rose, Kylie Jenner and even Teyana Taylor and hubby Iman Shumpert are packed like sardines, big-upping the product for making their teeth pearly white. At some point, it starts looking suspicious because we all know that stars be getting PAID to endorse products!

So honesty, while the celeb endorsements did peak my interest, what tipped me over the edge was getting the opportunity to interview the owner of the company, a black housewife from Atlanta named Ramona Griggie who started selling the product out of her kitchen and is now a multi-millionaire. When it comes to housewives-turned-entrepreneurs it don’t get no realer than that! I mean, she might be the original housewife of Atlanta.

So now I’m super curious to find out if this product really works or if it’s just the latest instagimmick? After all, teeth whitening made an estimated 11 billion in 2016 alone, according to statistics. Only one way to find out, I order a kit...

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Neighbor Calls Police on a 12-year-old Boy for Mowing the Wrong Lawn & Now His Business is on Fiyah!

Reggie Fields of 'Mr Reggie's Lawn Cutting Service'
By Erickka Sy Savané

Another day, another person calling the police on someone black for no good reason. There was 'BBQ Becky' who called the police on some black folks who were chefing it up with a grill in the park. 'Permit Patty' who got her fingers in a tizzy and called the police on an 8-year-old who was selling water on the sidewalk, and now there's the 'Lawnmower Lunatic' who called the police on 12-year-old entrepreneur, Reggie Fields of Cleveland, who was cutting grass and accidentally cut a piece of their lawn. Now, let me be fair by saying that there's been no footage confirming the color of the neighbors, but usually when there's no mention of color, the perpetrators are white. I'll take the heat if later we see that the Lawnmower Lunatic was actually a cranky old man of color with 10 cats. That said, things have turned out pretty well for Reggie...

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Build a Booty & Tone Your Legs With These 6 Home Exercises

Amina the Sweetheart
By Erickka Sy Savané

For a woman like me who was born in that small percentage of black women who have no booty, and by that I mean, a flat booty, anytime I see the promise of creating one that doesn't involve plastic surgery, because I've been there before and it didn't turn out well, I'm all ears. So when I came across Amina the Sweetheart's video on how to build a booty and tone your legs from home, I just had to share. Now before we go expecting a miracle, let's acknowledge that having a booty is mostly genetic, but perhaps these exercises can give a little lift, tone and pop to a lackluster booty. Here's Amina's video. Give it a try and let us know how it turns out. Whatdoyagottolose? Also like her page and drop us a comment with your thoughts. Happy building!!! 

#BlackWomenArePoppin: Watching This Cheerleader Do the Splits is Like Ice Cream on a Hot Day


Blackwomenarepoppin IG
By Erickka Sy Savané

With so much negativity on social media today anytime a video can inspire some positivity it's time to share! This video stuck out because this young lady is living her life, commanding center stage, not letting anything hold her back. How many times have we told ourselves that we couldn't do something because maybe we didn't fit the stereotype? Though we can't go back in time to become a high school cheerleader we can take that solo trip to Rome, go back to school, or just try a cartwheel for Chrisstakes...Just go for it!!!

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DIY Kinky Twist: Super Easy, Super Cheap, Super Adorable & Just in Time for Summer!


NapsAreTheNewBlack
By Erickka Sy Savané

Let's face it, there's nothing like a great protective style for the summer, especially if you're active. When this video surfaced by NapsAreTheNewBlack we clapped our hands because it's everything she said: "Super easy, super cheap, and super adorable!" Plus you don't have to be an expert to install. So do yourself a favor and peep this tutorial because it's less than five minutes! Also, leave a comment, like her page, and if you really like this video subscribe to her channel!

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In Tearful Interview, R. Kelly's Ex-Wife Finally Speaks About Her Own Years of Abuse With the Singer

Andrea Kelly 
By Erickka Sy Savané

Let the church say, AMEN. R. Kelly's ex-wife Andrea (Drea as many of us who watched the spunky and petite dancer on Hollywood Exes remember her by) has finally spoken out about her life with R. Kelly. Divorced in 2009, after 13 years and 3 children with the singer- now accused of child molestation and running a cult of young and under-age girls who are being held in Atlanta, some against their will- many have wondered how much Drea knew. I mean, if you saw her on Hollywood Exes, she seemed like a really nice woman. Well, now we know. Drea was suffering from her own abuse at the hands of R. Kelly and it's only now that she feels strong enough to speak out. We hope that she, as well as the many other women impacted by R. Kelly's abuse, will get the healing that they need. Check out her honest and heartfelt interview with Sister Circle Live.

True Story: I Witnessed a Murder in Amsterdam


By Erickka Sy Savané

His eyes meet mine. They are the coldest, darkest eyes I have ever seen, and this I can tell from all the way across the street. What a life this person must have lived to have eyes that could damn near kill you. I force myself to look away. As does my friend Vanessa who is feeling, I’m sure, the exact same way. It is impossible to see what we see and not be affected. In silence, we turn our heads in front of us, pick up our pace and carry on to the club that is our destination. We don’t speak the entire way. There is this knowing that to even talk about it before we are somewhere safe is in some way putting ourselves in jeopardy. It is best to pretend that everything is fine. But when the doors to the club shut behind us we exhale for the first time in at least ten solid blocks.
“What the hell was that?” I ask.
“I don’t know.”
“Do you think we’re safe?”
“I don’t know,” says Vanessa.

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Acne & Hyper Pigmentation No More. Chime (Hair Crush) is Sharing Her Magic Skin Care Routine

Chime (Hair Crush)
By Erickka Sy Savané

If you've ever suffered from acne and hyper pigmentation (dark spots) then you know it can make life seem unbearable. Though my skin in nowhere near the zit-covered train wreck that it was in high school, I do still suffer from the occasional breakout that leaves me with yucky dark spots. If this is a problem for you, worry no more because Chime (Hair Crush) has found a magic skin care routine that has helped turn her skin around in just 8 months! So if you've got 5 mins, do check out her video, drop us a comment and like her page!

4 Things I Learned When I Forgot My Baby in the Car


By Erickka Sy Savané

I was reading an article recently about a South Carolina dad whose 8-month-old baby died after being left in a hot car all day. We hear these stories and wonder how this could happen? Actually, statistics show that it happens to the tune of 36 babies dying each year in the United States. We also wonder, who could do such a thing? Well...I did. Thankfully, my baby didn’t die, and I was able to learn some valuable life lessons as a result.

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This Woman Relaxed Her Hair (at home) after 4 Years Natural & Here are the Results

Judith Kryztals
By Erickka Sy Savané

Things change, seasons change, and such is the case with natural hair & beauty vlogger Judith Kryztals, who after 4 years natural, recently relaxed her hair. In a surprise twist, she did it at home using a store-bought relaxer kit. Yup. I stopped doing those in junior high when I burned off my edges (thank GOD they grew back!), but since Judith grew up in her mom's salon she felt equipped enough to give it a shot. However, she DOES NOT recommend others who are going from natural to relaxed follow suit. Since this is a live reaction video you get to see the process as well as the results right along with Judith. I have to admit, watching her put the creamy crack on her virgin hair made me want to scream, "Noooooo!!!" but to each her own. Check out the video and tell us your thoughts?

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Light Skin Tears: A Youtube Channel for Light-Skin & Bi-Racial Women That's Stirring the Pot


By Erickka Sy Savané

I'll be the first to say that when I stumbled across the youtube channel, Light Skin Tears, for light-skin and bi-racial women, I had the same thought as when I first heard of the hair product line 'Mixed Chicks.' Like, seriously, ya'll need to segregate yourselves by calling out the fact that you are mixed? It sounded so pretentious, and I immediately turned off. And then there was the fact that the product was obviously not for my kinky hair. But once I took a listen, this woman has reasons for creating this channel that can't be easily dismissed.

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This Man Created a Pirate Adventure Book So His Sons Could See Themselves

Photo via DanualBerkley.com
By Erickka Sy Savané

Dad, poet and author Danual Berkley created Davy’s Pirate Ship Adventure, a children’s book about a kid named Davy who uses his magical powers to build a pirate ship so he and his family could search for gold, but no adventure ever goes as planned, because he never saw or was exposed to adventure books, or many books in general, with black families and characters. He says, 
"I decided then I wanted to provide that for my sons. That way when my sons read it, they could say, ‘Hey, that kid looks like me!’ or ‘That dad looks like my dad!” 

The Truth About Domestic Violence From Family Left Behind

Antoinette White and her niece
By Erickka Sy Savané

3 or more women are murdered by their boyfriends or husbands every single day in the United States. It's the type of tragedy you pray never happens in your family, and then it does. Antoinette White knows this story all too well because her younger sister Heather was brutally killed by her boyfriend who was also the father of her child (1 years old at the time), and a surrogate dad to her special needs son (age 3). For those who are left behind, life changes instantly. Here's how Antoinette's family were able to pick up the pieces.

Dominique Silver. Trans. Model. Jet-Setter.

Dominique Silver
By Erickka Sy Savané

Safe to say, the modeling industry has changed. Gone are the days where one standard of beauty represented the whole, and we can't get enough of diverse beauties like Winnie Harlow, Philomena Kwao, and Adut Akech. So it makes sense that transgender beauties are also having their day. Gone are the days where trans models have to hide out of fear or because no one will book them. One trans model who is carving out a name for herself is Dominican Republic-born, San Diego-bred Dominique Silver who has been in the modeling game long enough to chat about how the industry has evolved and what it's like to be a trans model today.

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Red Table Talk Episode 3 Did Not Disappoint: Here's Your Recap.

Adrienne, Jada & Willow
By Erickka Sy Savané

I ain’t gon’ lie, not since Power has a show grabbed my attention like Jada Pinkett Smith’s Red Table Talk on Facebook. Whether she’s sharing the early struggle of co-parenting with Will Smith’s first wife Sheree or daughter Willow is talking about cutting herself as a pre-teen, there’s something for everyone and they all, including Jada’s mom Adrienne, keep it completely 100. So what did the Ladies chat about this week?

Body Confessions and not only was it juicier than a Georgia peach, there was also a takeaway… 

A 3D Emoji App for Melanin-Poppin,' Natural-Haired Women is Just What We Need!

NapturalistaMoji.com
By Erickka Sy Savané

Ever feel like you needed an emoji that said exactly what you need it to say from someone that looks like you and your peeps? Napturalista Moji feels you and that's why they recently launched a kickstarter campaign to bring their melanin-poppin,' natural-haired emoji's to life!

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Got Veges? Actress & Author Esosa E. Gives Us the Skinny on Vegan Life

Esosa E.
By Erickka Sy Savané

If you've ever seen the popular web series 'An African City' then you're no stranger to ‘Ngozi,’ a character so sweet you can gain 5 lbs. just looking at her. She's that girlfriend that hasn't been jaded who’s there to remind us of how we used to be. And while people have come to know and love Ngozi, they're only beginning to discover Esosa E., the New York City born actress, author and holistic lifestyle advocate who so convincingly plays her. Get to know Esosa and you'll discover that she's passionate about health and beauty and has authored two books, 'The Acne-Free Diet' and 'Parasites Be Gone' to help others on their journey to a more holistic life. Her third book, 'Got Veg? How to Thrive on a Plant-Based Diet’ came about as a way to answer the many questions she received from readers of her blog about the basics of a vegan lifestyle. So if you've ever wondered what it would take to become a vegan, but had serious questions, wonder no more. Like a true girlfriend, Esosa's got everything you need to know. Read on!

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How Coming Close to Death Changed These Moms


Stacie J. & her girls/ Sheryl Roberts and her son
By Erickka Sy Savané

Written a few years back, this article about two moms who were forced to pay more attention to their mental health is just what the doctor ordered for Mental Health Month! Please read and take a moment to reflect on whether you're taking care of yourself as you should.

Sheryl Roberts was driving home late one evening when she fell asleep at the wheel. No she wasn’t drunk. But she was tired. So tired, in fact, that she was supposed to be on vacation. The first one in years. But she postponed it because when you’re a commercial actress and you book a mega job, you take it. Especially, when you need the money. So despite the fact that she crashed into a parked car and had a huge laceration on her forehead, she refused to go to the hospital.

“All I could think about was my job, and I still went the next morning even though my head was the size of Shrek,” says Sheryl.

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Jodie Patterson on Raising a Transgender Child

Photo via GeorgiaNY.com
By Erickka Sy Savané

For many of us just getting an idea of what it means to be transgender (identifying with the opposite sex of that which you are born), the thought of a transgender child is confusing because it poses questions like, is it just a phase and is a child old enough to make such an important decision about his or her identity? And while the majority of us will never have to deal with this issue, the truth is, some of us do, and probably more of us than we think. One of the reasons the topic stays under the radar is not because it’s not happening, but more often because opinions are so strong that parents choose not to talk about it. For Brooklyn-based beauty blogger and mother of 5, Jodie Patterson, staying quiet is not an option. For her, raising a transgender child, the right way, is a matter of life and death. Though I wrote this story a few years ago, it still rings true today, even more so with transgender rights and people being constantly under attack. Hopefully, reading this will give some insight into this under-discussed topic.

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