Books to Read in 2018

Books to Read in 2018 | The B Werd

I’m one of those girls who keeps a book close by to pull out of my purse in a waiting room or in a coffee shop. My nightstand has them stacked high and I have drawers full of books. I’m such an advocate for reading because it changed the dynamic of my life. Reading is something that will expand the way you think, take you places your feet never would’ve and teach you things you would’ve otherwise gone without knowing. Books aided me in my own self discovery, they mended my broken heart, and gave me the courage to go after the life I wanted for myself. There’s so much to be discovered between the pages of a good book, so in 2018 I’m challenging myself and you guys if you’d like to join, to one book a month.

Here are the books I’ve picked up and are planning to read, or reread because they’re that good.

Self Made

I read this book in one sitting on a plane ride headed to visit Christina in LA – that’s how good it was. I even got emotional at one point in the book because I related to her passion so closely. Nely Galan is a Cuban immigrant who went from being the minority, to being the boss. What I enjoyed most about her book was that she gave real step-by-step instructions on what we should be doing, how hard we should be working and how much we should be saving. This book definitely lit a fire under me to do more and get going on the ideas I had in my head.

Leave Your Mark

An oldie but a goodie. A Communications Executive, Aliza Licht, dishes on how to land your dream job, kill it in your career and rock social media. My career’s really important to me, and so is the brand I’ve built for myself so this is a gem I can continually revisit for advice and ideas on how I want to move forward with both. It’s an easy read and definitely worth your time.

Ego is The Enemy

Nate picked this book up recently and after sharing a few excerpts with me I decided to read it myself. Without us even realizing it, our ego holds us back from so much. It stands between us and who we really are, our success, and who we have the potential to become. This was an eye opening read that revealed some of my flaws that I had not yet recognized. If you’re looking to shed layers you no longer need, this book is for you!

When Breath Becomes Air

This book brought me to tears. At 36 a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi, went diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. He takes you through his journey of going from treating the dying, to fighting to live. A book that will truly change the way you think and open up your eyes to the blessings in everyday.

The Last Black Unicorn

I fell in love with Tiffany Haddish after watching Girls Trip and tuned into everything she appeared on after that. But her story is so much deeper than her being talented. Tiffany grew up in foster care in South Central Los Angeles and would make people laugh as a route of survival. Her recount of how she came from nothing and nowhere to achieve her dreams by owning, sharing, and using her pain to heal others isn’t just entertaining, it’s incredibly inspiring.


I read this book over the span of Hurricane Harvey and couldn’t put it down. This book is about forgetting trying to inch your way up a corporate ladder, finding hacks in business and reaching the top your way, on your own time. He also doesn’t just encourage you, he gives you step-by-step instructions to turn your passion into a full-fledged business. A great read for those wanting to do more than go to a job 5 days a week.

The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership

This book was gifted to me when I was a junior in college by an entrepreneur who also happened to be a good friend. It was one of the best gifts I’d received. It teaches you what makes great leaders and how to become one. The timing of the book was perfect, since I was getting ready to step out into the “real world”. I can truly say that this book helped me be a leader in my environment regardless of my age. Leadership is a characteristic, not something you qualify for. If you learn the laws of leadership, people will follow.

The Sun and Her Flowers

I’m a huge fan of Rupi Kaur and admire her transparency so much. Her first book, Milk and Honey took me on a roller coaster of emotions but also reminded me how strong and powerful I was. I expected nothing less from The Sun and Her Flowers. This book personifies how we grow, wilt and bloom as people and is just as poetic as her first book. A must-read!

You are a Bad Ass with Money

Believe it or not, I keep a mini-version of You Are a Badass in my purse to pull out in times of need. It’s straight to the point, an easy read and hits you right where you need it. I recently listened to a Podcast with the author, Jen Sincero, and I fell even more in love with her candid, no-filter, inspiring attitude. If You Are a Bad Ass with Money is as impactful as You Are a Bad Ass, I’ll be incredibly pleased with the read.

Which books do you guys have on your list? Share below which books are worth an additional read!

2018 Book Choices

Skincare Tips for Winter

Skincare Tips for Winter | The B Werd

If you follow me on Instagram, you already know I preach about switching skincare regimens with the seasons. When the temperature changes, my skin can easily go from oily to dry, from sensitive to rough. It’s my job to make sure I’m nourishing not just my face, but all of my skin in a way that’s sufficient. As I get older, taking care of my skin has become much more of a priority than it was in my early 20’s when I was lucky if I even took my makeup off before bed. Now that I know better, I try my best to do better – but little did I know, I was doing so much wrong. I’m partnering with Dove Advanced Care to share my skincare essentials and talk about why Dove Advanced Care Antiperspirant is a great place to start.

Skincare Tips for Winter | The B WerdSkincare Tips for Winter | The B Werd

I made the mistake of ignoring the fact that I have pretty sensitive skin, so when my skin would react to products that weren’t good for it I accepted it as normal instead of taking heed to the red flags. I originally switched over to Dove Advanced Care for the 48-hour odor and wetness protection it promised since my workdays are so unpredictable! I was in for such a surprise after experiencing added skin care benefits for softer, smoother underarms. I started with the Soothing Chamomile since I was experiencing irritation from over-shaving and uncomfortable fabrics, and eventually darker underarms as a result of that. It only took a week for to see an improvement in the texture and coloration of my skin. I now rotate between the Soothing Chamomile and the Beauty Finish that literally leaves your skin sparkling.

Check out Dove Advanced Care Antiperspirant online.

Skincare Tips for Winter | The B Werd

Dove Dermatologist, Dr. Alicia Barba, shared three easy implementable changes with me that you can make in the Fall and Winter that will make big differences when Spring rolls around. Check them out below!

Care For Your Underarms

I was so rough on my underarms without even realizing it. I’d shave them at the sight of any sort of hair and never moisturize them. Underarm skin is sensitive and an area that shouldn’t be overlooked, Dr. Barba says. I didn’t realize until recently that textures and fabrics in sweaters, undergarments and t-shirts can irritate your skin. Underneath all those layers, you’ll need a product that keeps you hydrated and protected. Dove Advanced Care Antiperspirant is formulated with moisturizers to help alleviate irritation and leave you with softer and smoother underarms. I’d show you before and after photos but I’m too embarrassed LOL!

Quit Over-Exfoliating

I have no idea why I assumed that scrubbing my face to death would eliminate blemishes, when in fact it did the opposite. Over-exfoliating can strip the skin of its essential oils leading to breakouts, especially in the dryer, colder months. A misconception is that rubbing off dead skin cells daily will improve skin, when it actually can dehydrate it. Now I use a gel cleanser daily and a beaded exfoliator only twice a week.

Don’t Just Moisturize What Can Be Seen

Am I the only one who only moisturizers what can be seen, like my hands and ankles? LOL! When the weather allows us to wear less, we moisturize more – but it can be easy to neglect our covered areas when we swap in our less-revealing winter wardrobes. You want to make sure you don’t forget to care for your neck, chest, hands, and anywhere else all year long. Moisturize beyond the face. Fall and winter are the time to give extra care to the areas you tend to neglect. Come spring, your healthy skin will thank you.

Less is More

When my skin would give me trouble, particularly my face, I would go overboard with products, scrubbing and washing when what I needed was so much less. My new routine, recommended by Dr. Barba, is as simple as washing my face before bed, applying a retinol, then moisturizing my face, neck, chest and hands.

Skincare Tips for Winter | The B Werd

How do you care for your skin during colder months? Share in a comment below!

*This post is in partnership with Dove Advanced Care Antiperspirant. All opinions are my own.*

Monday Motivation | Everything Starts with Vision

Monday Motivation | Everything Starts with Vision

I attribute a huge amount of the woman that I am today to Sex And The City. It may sound ridiculous, but I learned some legitimate life lessons that shaped the idea of what I wanted my life to be like and exactly how I wanted it to look. I can remember a significant amount of time where I felt like I didn’t even need friends thanks to Charlotte, Carrie, Samantha and Miranda. There was an episode for every possible womanhood scenario and coming from where I’m from, I didn’t get to see many women like them with my own two eyes too often. What I loved most about Sex And The City was that nothing was left out. The realities of friendships, dating, careers and aspirations were all addressed from four different women’s point of view.

I probably wasn’t any older than 12 with these visions of myself walking down the sidewalk in designer high heels in a big city, sitting in front of a window writing about love on my MacBook just like Carrie, living unapologetically like Samantha, owning a room full of men as the only woman like Miranda, all while being as optimistic as Charlotte. I was certain that my 30-something year old life would consist of being able to meet my girlfriends for lunch, stroll into Barney’s and buy a few things without looking twice at the price (well maybe twice because I’ll always be frugal), be a professional and most importantly be in control of my own life.

Every so often, I have these “aha” moments where I realize I’m doing exactly the things I used to daydream about. I wanted to create a Sex And The City platform specifically for women where conversations about real life were welcome and that’s exactly what I did with The B Werd. I envisioned quickly walking through airports to my next beach destination and now I’m on my second passport. I adored Oprah and wanted the opportunity to take my discussions further as a woman of color, then I was invited to speak publicly on panels and to crowds. At one point, I couldn’t afford to purchase products from some of the brands I’m now getting the chance to partner with, and now they’re willing to pay me to mention them. These were all just ideas to me previously, things that would make me smile at the thought of them. The joy you feel from your ideas is what informs the universe to bring you closer to them.

Vision is such a powerful contribution to your success. More and more I’m beginning to recognize that I’m living a life I created for myself years ago simply because I visualized it (and of course worked my ass off for it). What do you see when you close your eyes and imagine your best life? Is it you 20 pounds lighter? Is it you being flown first class to speak in front of your Alma Mater on women in tech? Is it you smiling at your kids splashing around in a pool because you were able to take them on your first family vacation? One of my favorite Bible verses is Habakkuk 2:2 where The Lord says, “Write this. Write what you see. Write it out in big block letters so that it can be read on the run. This vision-message is a witness pointing to what’s coming. It aches for the coming—it can hardly wait! And it doesn’t lie. If it seems slow in coming, wait. It’s on its way. It will come right on time.” 

Today, I want you to get specific with what you see for your life and then slowly work towards making that vision a reality. Start preparing for the visions you had last year, the year before, or even as a child. Those are true desires that deserve to come to pass. Nothing you can imagine for yourself is too unrealistic or too far away, as long as you believe you can obtain even what seems to be too far ahead of you. Get going on your visions.

Do something this week to bring you one-step closer to the life you imagine and have fun while doing it. Happy Monday!

Weekend Deals

Weekend Deals | The B Werd

I know you guys have seen me in my favorite NY camo baseball hat. It’s been out of stock for years but this one is even better and on it’s way to be added to my collection.

Take an extra 70% off at Loft, no code necessary! So many good staples and work items to choose from.

I bought these Levi’s a few weeks ago and they did not disappoint. Looking forward to wearing them when it’s warmer with open toe heels.

Every year I spend a few hundred bucks revamping my work wardrobe. It’s the easiest way for me to feel motivated and Express has 30% off work essentials. I’m definitely taking advantage of it!

I’m loving these wrap around barely there heels. They also come in black.

I gifted this black leather watch for Christmas and it looked so expensive. Now it’s 50% off and under $50!

Always keep a graphic tee at hand. This Pink Floyd one is a keeper.

This Adidas hoodie is 50% off, but only one size left!

My favorite camel coat is 33% off. Also available in black.

I love the idea of a slip dress for a subtle celebration. It’s sexy enough for a birthday but simple enough to wear anywhere.

Take an extra 20% off of Missguided sale items and 40% off all new items. These sock booties are so cute and this dress is perfect for a birthday or bachelorette party!

ASOS, my favoriiiite place to shop online, also has 70% off all sale items. I got this wrap dress for $27 and this yellow jumpsuit.

Shop the Deals: 

A New Kind of Self Care in 2018

New Kind of Self Care in 2018 | The B Werd

When I look back on 2017, I feel like I squeezed an entire year into six months. It moved so quickly, I worked so hard and I accomplished so much. I celebrated, I explored, I grew, and I did a lot of things I told myself that I would. With pushing all of my limits came consequences. Feeling tired was an everyday thing. I also had two major health scares that included a disabling headache that lasted for four days straight and a ringing in my ear that caused temporary loss of hearing and lack of balance. It was more than scary, it was a wake up call to learn to prioritize better. It was a wake up call not to recognize when I’m doing myself more harm than good by running myself thin.

Not only did 2017 test me, I tested myself. I rarely took breaks in the name of “work” and that left me burnt out, overwhelmed and exhausted. In 2018, I’m dedicated to working just as hard in my business but more importantly, even harder to make sure that I take better care of myself. At the end of the day, if I’m not in the best shape physically, mentally and emotionally, I can’t give my best to anything else I want to pursue. We’ve been convinced that self care is monthly facials and massages or a bottle of champagne with pizza for a night in, but it’s much more than that.

I’ve learned the hard way that self care isn’t always glamorous and rarely involves lighting scented candles or dropping bath bombs in a tub. In fact, it’s actually much uglier than that. Self care is likely sitting at a table reviewing your debt and creating a plan to tackle it. It’s putting your phone down at 10 pm to make sure you can get out of bed the first time your alarm goes off for that 6 am workout. It’s being realistic about what you want to achieve and not over-promising results. It can even look like cutting ties with toxic people in order to better serve yourself. As much as we’re all aiming to achieve, self care should be preventative. It shouldn’t be something we result to after we use up every ounce of energy we have or cause ourselves to break down.

A lot of people are in the process of planning their 2018 New Years Resolutions, if they don’t already have them secured. Instead of planning to start a diet for the 10th time or committing to making a million dollars, I want us to focus on making resolutions to add value to our lives. Wake up and tell the people that matter to you that you love them, call your grandmother and take her to lunch, tell people you appreciate them so they know they’re cared for, schedule doctor and dentist appointments and create new habits that improve your overall well being. Read more books, get more rest and Find more ways to create passive income instead of exchanging time for money.

This year, let’s let self care mean being the hero of your life, not the victim. Let it mean rerouting what you do and how you do it until your everyday life isn’t something you need a vacation to recover from. It is no longer choosing a life that looks good over a life that feels good. It’s letting go of  some goals so you can focus more on others. It’s being honest even if that means you aren’t universally liked. It’s meeting your own needs so you aren’t constantly anxious and dependent on other people.

Self care this year means doing better and becoming the person you know you want and are meant to be. Someone who knows that bath bombs and champagne are ways to enjoy life – not escape from it. I hope your 2018 looks exactly how you imagine. I’m going to try my damnedest to make sure mine does.