Constellation Company x Ms. Elite NY Pageant

Constellation Company was honored to sponsor hair and makeup for Ms. Elite Bronx at the Ms. Elite NY Pageant. This event was created to bring awareness to domestic violence victims. It was an awesome and humbling experience and all of the ladies were amazing. Check out this footage of the event from Peekapose Productions featuring an interview segment with Principal Artist/Owner, Apani Smith of Constellation Company.

 

 

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Apani Smith is a professional licensed cosmetologist, avid beauty junkie, also a revered Indie Hip-Hop Icon, sleep deprived mom and foodie extraordinaire.  Get social with  @apaniclassic on Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest  to book a hair or makeup consultation/appointment, see more original work and life imitating art. 

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3 Ways to Get Beach Waves without Heat

You can channel summer all year round by creating dreamy easy breezy beach waves. I will show you 3 ways – no heat required to get the look. If you have some texture in your hair already than its easy to use a wave spray or cream to bump up the wave pattern and create more texture. If you have stick straight hair then getting waves is more of a challenge but not impossible. With all of these methods you will need to start with wet hair so its a good idea to create this beachy style after your shampoo and condition routine.

Method 1
Section wet hair into 3 vertical sections.  Starting top of the first section make a dutch braid all the way down the section. Do not braid all the way to the end. Secure the braid with an elastic band. After hair has dried remove the elastics and undo the braids. You will have a wavy texture to style as you wish.

Method2

Apply a texture cream to wet hair then section still wet hair into block sections. Finger twirl each section. Wind it around itself forming knots and pin the knots in place. After hair has dried release the knots and style.

Method3

Apply mousse and texture spray to wet hair and begin taking sections of hair and rolling with flexi-rods. Determine the appropriate size rod by  considering  length of hair and size of wave desired. Allow to dry then remove rods and style.

 

 

Constellation Co. Debuts NY Fashion Week Wig Collection

The Constellation company debuted 5 pieces last week at #Iconical, a designer’s market show at Brooklyn Commons in New York.

 

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Apani Smith is a professional licensed cosmetologist, avid beauty junkie, also a revered Indie Hip-Hop Icon, sleep deprived mom and foodie extraordinaire.  Get social with  @apaniclassic on Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest  to book a hair or makeup consultation/appointment, see more original work and life imitating art. 

Men’s Grooming: What styling product is best for my hair?

With so many styling products out there all promising perfect results, its kinda hard to for guys to figure which ones you need. You saw a commercial u you like, your bro swears by some other particular product but you always buy whatever’s cheapest and you aren’t even sure If you like it or not. Maybe u never use products and aren’t sure if you need one. Its confusing right? But if you aren’t rocking a buzz cut, then you probably should invest in at least one QUALITY styling product.

OK, but how do you know which one? The first thing you need to understand is what will work for your hair type? Next, what look are you trying to achieve, How much time are you willing to put into your hair? Determine your lifestyle – casual,conservative or a mishmosh of both? First of all make sure you have a great haircut. This is the foundation and determines what looks are possible and what products you need to maximize the styling options.  I am going to break down different attributes of products out there and the terms you might see listed on product labels. You the consumer can use this information to determine what works best for you! Just remember when using products start with very little then build you can always add a bit more. Getting a recommendation form your stylist is always a good way to determine what products may be the best for you.

Hold: Hmmm…Light, Medium or  Strong hold ? Do you have a very active lifestyle? Are you looking for a product that will hold up to challenging climate conditions like rain or humidity? Do you have hair  that just does what it wants? Maybe you find a strong growth pattern with stubborn cowlicks that just do what they please. Sounds like you need a strong hold product. If you are looking with a product that has some hold but very flexible, there are no real hair issues and your hair is pretty cooperative then medium hold will do. If you really just want to coerce the hair into shape and you don’t mind it being blown by wind or want to keep it very natural but add some polish to your low maintenance cut then a light hold would be a perfect choice.

Finish: Shine or Matte? Products like creams and some wax pomades can give the hair some shine. While pastes and putty tend to have more hold but medium to no shine. Depending on the alcohol content gels can look a dry, even flaky, look wet or shiny. An alcohol free product is much better for your hair. I personally think a little shine is great because it just makes the hair look healthier. But truly this is a personal choice.

Texture: Gel, Wax, Paste, Putty, Cream: For thick dense hair heavier products such as a wax pomade can be great to control unruly hair while also enhancing shine bringing a feeling of depth and fullness to wave patterns. Gels are good for medium to full density hair. For a spiky style gel is a go to product but when the hair is on the fine side you will notice some separation which can tend to make your hair look sparse. Creams I find are great for almost any hair type but will not provide any significant hold. Paste, Putty and wax can almost rival each other in what they promise in end result however wasted tend to be oily again for fine hair this can be way too heavy.

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Apani Smith is a professional licensed cosmetologist, avid beauty junkie, also a revered Indie Hip-Hop Icon, sleep deprived mom and foodie extraordinaire.  Get social with  @apaniclassic on Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest  to book a hair or makeup consultation/appointment, see more original work and life imitating art. 

Expert or Nah??!?

via Daily Prompt: Expert

With so many beauty “experts on social media these days its hard to tell the real from the fake. I guess there is a bit of gawker and stalker in all of us as we are willing to watch these people in their bedrooms sitting in front of a shoe rack in their bedroom or a shower curtain of a cluttered bathroom talking to us about how they install their own weave. If you are an expert why do you only do your own hair, apply your makeup and also do this in your bathroom. Some people I guess are fine with this type of presentation but as a viewer and as a LICENSED professional I take issue with it. The ultimate punchline in these videos is that you watch some of these “experts” videos which have been carefully edited with music and transitions and even cute little intros with their channel names leading their videos as if to say “TAKE ME SERIOUS. I AM PROFESSIONAL. I AM AN EXPERT. Then they make a pronouncement that hey “I am no professional but…” OK, so why am i listening to you again?

First of all a professional has experience with other hair/makeup other than their own. If you recommend a product to me I need to know that you understand the science of a product so that you are recommending it because it works for my hair/skin type. ok your hair is done face is beat but we in the junky bathroom doing hair or got ya kids hollering in the background #icant. I understand the whole fake it till you make it thing but its extremely hard to perceive what I’m watching as expert advice due to unprofessional settings, lack of basic industry knowledge while watching these tubers put on makeup on themselves over and over again. I can applaud the entrepreneurial spirit but not the presentation. Watcher beware.

 

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Apani Smith is a professional licensed cosmetologist, avid beauty junkie, also a revered Indie Hip-Hop Icon, sleep deprived mom and foodie extraordinaire.  Get social with  @apaniclassic on Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest  to book a hair or makeup consultation/appointment, see more original work and life imitating art. 

 

10 Teen Beauty Bag Musts

Shop this story:
1. e.l.f. Essential Shine Eraser 2. e.l.f. Studio Zit Eraser 3. Jouer Cheek & Lip Tint 4. Too Faced – Bronzed & Poreless Bronzer 5. Illicit Lash Mascara – Black 6. Jane Iredale – PurePressed – Base Mineral Foundation – SPF 20 7. Mini Brush Set 8. Too Faced – Brow Envy 9. Butter London – Sheer Lip Gloss 10. C.O. Bigelow Lemon Lip Balm – No. 1421

Click the Gallery pics and check out the slideshow for more details about these recommended products.

 

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Apani Smith is a professional licensed cosmetologist, avid beauty junkie, also a revered Indie Hip-Hop Icon, sleep deprived mom and foodie extraordinaire.  Get social with  @apaniclassic on Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest  to book a hair or makeup consultation/appointment, see more original work and life imitating art. 

De-pot Your Makeup in 3 Easy Steps

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Do you have melted or broken lipsticks, blushes or eyeshadows?

Don’t toss them in the trash just to re-buy them. Instead de-pot them in 3 simple steps.

Getting Started:

All you need is a sanitary workspace, clean cosmetic spatula and an empty container. The spatula and containers can be easily purchased by the pack for a dollar or two at either a drugstore, beauty supply, craft store, online or  even the 0.99 cent store.

Additionally, You can save even more money by repurposing a cosmetic container from a previous purchase with a secure cover or by saving a old sample container from a cosmetic counter. If reusing a container, clean, dry and sanitize it before using. To sanitize your container, wash and dry it with a clean paper towel, then spray it with alcohol of 70% vol or higher and let it air dry.

 Step by Step:

 

num1 Prepare a clean workspace area. Use a clean paper towel or napkin to protect the area from loose product or an accidental spill.

 

 

 

 

num2

Gather the products you need to perform the task: a cosmetic spatula and clean sanitized container with a secure lid. You can repurpose an old container also. Be sure to sanitize it with alcohol at least 70% volume or higher.

 

 

 

num3

Finally, use the spatula to transfer the product into the new container.

 

 

 

 Saves money, less waste. Simple and fast. I hope you will try to depot your cosmetics the next time you have a crumbling cosmetics crisis. If you have any comments or questions about this article, please share them below in the comments section.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Apani Smith is a professional licensed cosmetologist, avid beauty junkie, also a revered Indie Hip-Hop Icon, sleep deprived mom and foodie extraordinaire.  Get social with  @apaniclassic on Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest  to book a hair or makeup consultation/appointment, see more original work and life imitating art. 

Shampoo Basics I: Types of Shampoo

We are living in the age of options on top of options. Sometimes its hard to know how to maneuver thru so many choices for different types of shampoo. Finding a shampoo sounds simple, after all. its just soap right? But it can be really difficult. Deciding what cleansing product you should purchase depends on several factors such as what is the right shampoo for your hair type, so you need a shampoo for colored hair and whether you gravitate more towards organic shampoo or prefer heavily scented products, Perhaps you specifically need a medicated shampoo because you are looking for a “fixer” product to address a condition or disorder. Lets not forget an important factor  for most people – how much does it cost? The main factor to consider is what works for you. Do not pick a product based on glowing reviews or beautiful packaging. What works for someone else may not work for you. Do your research and always ask your stylist for a recommendation.

Oribe Ultra Gentle Shampoo

Oribe Ultra Gentle Shampoo is sulfate free and used in the finest salons.

A good shampoo should thoroughly cleanse the scalp of dirt, sweat, oils and products while leaving the hair looking healthy, shiny and soft. While I will discuss in greater detail the properties of different ingredients found in shampoos in another article, this particular article will be dealing solely with understanding what are the different types of shampoos, and how and when to use them. Below I have compiled a list of all the categories of shampoos available on the market, their individual uses and even a few product recommendations and links in each category.  If you are confused by the all the brands and fancy labels on the market, then you must read this article. Please be advised that this article should merely serve as a general guide. Always follow manufacturer directions for proper usage.

These are shampoos used for deep cleansing if for example, you use a lot of product to maintain your hairstyle.  Often these shampoos are used before getting a chemical process such as Keratin or Straightening treatments. Clarifying shampoos are not recommended for use if you wash your hair every couple of days. These are better used once per week or even every two weeks. Using too often can really strip the hair of its natural oils and can be a bit harsh. Apple cider vinegar is often a main ingredient in clarifying shampoo.
Recommended Products: 
Peppermint & Avocado Clarifying Shampoo
Bumble and bumble Sunday Shampoo
Philip B Lavender Hair & Body Shampoo
Rene Furterer Curbicia Lightness Regulating Shampoo

An acid balanced shampoo should be used after any chemical process. These process contain active agents which are highly alkaline and the hair must be brought down to its natural level of 4.5-5.5 ph. An acid balanced shampoo will smooth the cuticle and prevent additional loss of moisture.

Medicated Shampoo

Babo Botanicals Rosemary & Tea Tree Lice Repelling Shampoo

Babo Botanicals is a children’s line of organic hair care products with eco-friendly ingredients.

Medocated shampoos can be sold over the counter, prescribed by a doctor or recommended by a cosmetologist. Medicated shampoos are used to relieve excessive itching, flaking or other condition of the scalp like bacteria and fungal infections. Medicated shampoos are also needed to combat lice, scabies, mites or other vermin. Often the active ingredient is an anti -microbial such as some form of zinc or selenium. Botanical oils such as peppermint tea tree, eucalyptus may be an ingredient to soothe itching.
Recommended Products: 
Philip B Anti Flake II Relief Shampoo
Babo Botanicals Rosemary Tea Tree Lice Repel Shampoo
Opalis Anti-Dandruff Shampoo

Also known as a moisturizing shampoo, these contain humectant and emollient agents for hydration and protein to promote elasticity. Conditioning shampoos are vital to hair which has been subjected to chemical processing like bleaching, color, relaxers or perms have had protein and moisture stripped from the hair. Moisturizing shampoos can bring life and volume back to the hair. However, take caution with heavy conditioners so that the hair is not weighed down and becomes lifeless.
Recommended Products: 
 
A good color shampoo can brighten or refresh color treated hair. Some may tone color or add color to the hair in between color retouches, or minimize unwanted tones in bleached or color treated hair. These shampoos are gentle and sulfate free with a conditioning agent to smooth the porous cuticles of color treated hair. Hair with high porosity will not only absorb color, chemicals or moisture much faster but will also release it much faster. This category should not be confused for a color safe shampoo which is really a very moisturizing, gentle shampoo that while it will also hydrate the hair and smooth the cuticle to keep the color molecules from escaping, there is no color added.
Recommended Products: 
67041_davines_alchemicshampoo_chocolatebrunette_250ml_sizedproduct_800x960

Davines Alchemic Color Shampoo can help to keep your color fresh in between salon visits. Choose from 4 options: Silver Fox, Chocolate Brunette, Golden Blonde and Red. Alchemic shampoo a fave of celebrity hair goddesses Victoria Beckham and Jennifer Aniston.

Lately Dry Shampoo has become very popular. It has become a go to styling product to add volume and texture to fine hair. Traditionally, it had been used to cleanse the hair of the elderly or bedridden who were unable to do a proper shampoo at the sink. Dry Shampoo can be used to refresh the hair between your normal shampoo routine, without water and absorb excess oils. To use this type of shampoo you simply apply the product and after a few minutes brush it out.
Recommended Products: 

 

 

 

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Apani Smith is a professional licensed cosmetologist, avid beauty junkie, also a revered Indie Hip-Hop Icon, sleep deprived mom and foodie extraordinaire.  Get social with  @apaniclassic on Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest  to book a hair or makeup consultation/appointment, see more original work and life imitating art. 

Safely Remove Hair Color Stain on Skin

Hair coloring can be a messy process so I wanted to share the best hair color remover methods. Hair color can get all over your clothes and worse your skin. Before applying hair color the smartest thing to do is to drape your clothing to protect it, and if a little color drops on your clothing, you can just throw your clothes in the machine anyhow. Also, you can keep hair color stains on hands to a minimum by wearing protective gloves. Still, what do you do to remove the residual color that is visibly often left at the hairline? Many hair color manufacturers actually make stain removers to get rid of stains on the skin post color application. You can go spend a few extra bucks to buy one of those products or try one of the DIY cheapo options I have listed below. There are several ways floating around on the internet but some of those include methods I would not recommend for your face. It can be harmful to the delicate skin of the face. However, these are 3 methods I have shared are ones I use to remove hair color stain on skin most frequently after applying hair color because you can use on face and hands.

num1

At the sink while rinsing out the color, take some of the hair closest to the hair closest to the hairline that has been rinsed free of color and rub the the area where hair color stains remain on the skin. Yes this works! Just carefully rub the color stains with a few strands of hair and watch it fade away. I find this method works better with lighter hair color stains. Still works on deeper shades but not as effective as methods one or two. For deeper shades use a little shampoo around the hairline and rub with a warn towel or fingers. The secret to this is to get to the stains before they set.

Rubbing_alcohol

Alcohol is a cheap method to remove hair color stains from skin

 num2

Rubbing alcohol is a cheap way to remove color from the skin. Using either an alcohol pad or a bit of alcohol poured onto a cotton ball, gently rub the area where there is any visible hair color stain on skin. This is my fave method because it usually remove all or most of the color and alcohol can be purchased inexpensively just about everywhere. This method is frequently used in the salon.

num3

Another favorite is Baking soda. It is an inexpensive item you probably already have at home and has multiple uses in addition to its reputation as a powerful stain fighter. But yup, now you can use it to remove your hair color stains as well. Make a paste by mixing it with a some dish washing liquid. Remember to always rub an area gently. The skin on the face is sensitive and Baking soda has exfoliant qualities and can be abrasive if one rubs too aggressively.

 num4
Using a lubricant is also a very effective way to remove hair color stains from skin. Petroleum jelly (vaseline), Coconut Oil and Olive Oil can all be used for this method. A few drops on a cotton ball should do the trick.
num5
Color Stain Removers often have alcohol as a secret ingredient and are usually manufactured by companies who also manufacture hair color products. Use as directed on the label.

I hope you have liked the ideas I have shared and can use them. If you have any suggestions or comments on the information, please share them in the comments section.

 Dont forget to SUBSCRIBE! SHARE! COMMENT!Apani Smith is CEO of 2040 Multimedia and the creator of “The M.U.H.N.I.E. $how” Blog. Also a revered Indie HipHop Icon, Beauty Fanatic, NYS licensed Cosmetologist, sleep deprived mom and foodie extraordinaire.  Get social with me on Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest @apaniclassic to see more of my work and interests.

Foundation Basics II: Finding Your Color Match

The fact is that at least 94% of women aren’t wearing the  foundation color. But, how do you know what makeup is right for you? Picking the right color can be such a headache because there are so a multitude of choices. There are many cosmetics companies who make great products but not understanding how they work for you can be an expensive, time consuming and frustrating experience. Personally this is why I recommend getting matched by a professional.

 TIP #1: Get your foundation matched at a cosmetics counter in a department store and ask for a FREE sample. After giving it a try at home and observing it under natural light you can purchase the sample from the same department store, or match it against a drugstore foundation of your choice which is better suited to your price range.

ROSY ORGOLDEN

DO YOU HAVE ROSY OR GOLDEN UNDERTONES?

Ultimately, the key to finding the best foundation match is finding your undertone. Are you a cool or warm?  If you are a warm undertone then it means your skin has a golden undertone. If you are a cool then your skin leans towards/rosy-reddish undertones. At most any cosmetic counter in a department store, it is easy to get a FREE foundation sample by simply asking to be matched. Choose a brand that has a wide range of shades such as Lancome, Estee Lauder, Bobbi Brown, MAC or Clinique. If you cant figure out your undertone they will help you.

Ask for a hand mirror to follow along in the process. You should be “striped” with 2-3 colors so that you can observe for yourself which is the right color. Don’t just take the word of a pushy Beauty Advisor who says I do this 30 times a day for the last 1000 years so I know the right color when I see it. All humans are fallible. Besides you aren’t there for the education of the salesperson, you are there for your own education. I always prefer to match a customer and allow them to take the foundation home and test drive then come back to me satisfied and 100% sure of their purchase because THEY know it works. Not because I told them it works. Another thing is that department store lighting can be deceptive so they color may not look the same outside in natural light or in the lighting at home where you apply your makeup. Even if you cannot afford department store brand foundation, which can be pricey starting around $25 & up, at least get the sample and use it as apoint of reference to take with you to the drugstore or beauty supply or where ever you purchase your foundation and match up the color as best you can.

TIP #2: Whether you buy a foundation at a department store or chain drugstore you can bring it back should the product be unsatisfactory or you have an allergic reaction.

 Because there often aren’t samples or testers at a drugstore and likely not at the beauty supply either, you still may have to purchase a few different types to try that don’t quite suit you before you find your foundation match in heaven. Do not be discouraged and do not settle. The good thing about purchasing foundations at either a department store or drugstore is that you are allowed to bring back the product if the color doesn’t work for you or if you have some type of reaction to the product. I would confirm before I buy. At a drugstore I would ask a manager to be sure. Just don’t bring back an empty bottle for an exchange and expect happy and cooperative sales people. If you need to try it one or twice in different lighting or weather that is understandable but using 3/4 of the bottle then expecting a refund is a tad uncivilized 😦 IF you don’t like your free sample then just toss it in the trash. After all, it was free. Be on the lookout for foundations that oxidize and turn ashy or orange as the day wears on. If the color doesn’t stay true throughout the day then it’s not worth your money. If your head is already spinning at the thought of navigating thru literally hundreds of foundation choices to find just the right match. There are brands who make “neutral” foundation lines. This means these foundations are formulated to match the skin tones of both warm and cool complexions within the color range.

TIP #3: Foundation matching works best on makeup free, clean, moisturized skin.  You cannot get an accurate indication of one’s true color if there are layers of makeup applied to the skin.

Additionally, be advised that foundation looks best on clean skin. Placing a foundation on top of an unwashed face will not give the best results and wear. Moisturizing beforehand is OK and highly advised. This is also true for going to a cosmetics counter for a foundation match. I can’t tell you how many women at the counter expected me to mach their foundation on top of makeup they were already wearing. How will the Beauty Advisor know what color your skin truly is under bronzer, blush, spray tan and the foundation you have layered on? If you cant bear to leave your house with a bare face, allow the Beauty Advisor to remove a small patch of foundation near the jawline. They have tons of foundation testers at the counter. After you get matched, they can patch you up good as new.

Good luck hunting down your perfect foundation shade.

Shop foundations on ApaniSmith.com

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Apani Smith is a professional licensed cosmetologist, avid beauty junkie, also a revered Indie Hip Hop Icon, sleep deprived mom and foodie extraordinaire.  Get social with @apaniclassic on Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest  to see more original work and life imitating art.