Pregnancy Acne, What works?


How to reduce pre/postnatal acne


I can tell you today, that pregnancy acne for me was the worse. Never have I ever thought that it would take over my life and fill me up with shame. I don’t really wear make up, so I was trying to cover it up as much as I can, and what made it worse is that it’s always felt off to me, because naturally I love the natural look. My pregnancy with Sage wasn’t bad at all, my skin was actually glowing, however with Ollie my skin suffered badly, especially since I was too sick to really take care of myself or even figure out what my skin needed. The more I ignored my skin the worse the acne scars got, and I couldn’t take it anymore. So I set out to find the right products for my skin and being that I was pregnant I didn’t want anything toxic to possibly harm the baby. I searched for brands with natural ingredients and I needed a cleanser that was strong enough to get off all this farm dirt off my face but gentle on my skin. So when I was about 7 months pregnant and was able to get myself together without throwing up from every passing scent; I headed to Sephora to search their collections. That’s when I found Youth to The People, and I lie to you not! This brand saved my skin and my self esteem, because almost two years later I am still using it, and now my skin clearer than before.


When you are pregnant, you go through a major hormonal change, even after pregnancy, your skin some times doesn’t really go back to its old self, so you sort of have to find yourself again, through out all the work you have to do in motherhood. But I highly recommend having a skincare routine to balance your skin’s needs and to promote self care, which is imperative in the early stages of motherhood.


The first step in finding the right brand for you is…


1. What is your budget?

-- What can you afford? I can tell you to go get this item, but please make sure it fits in your budget in spending. Baby food/items are truly what’s important and you don’t want to over spend because of vanity.


What does your skin lack?

n  Do you have dry skin, oily skin, sensitive skin, are you ok with toxic ingredients? Do you need to exfoliate? This one was very important for me as well as moisturizing, A cleanser wasn’t enough for me, I also needed to exfoliate before washing to get the dirt that is hard to come off with just washing alone. Then added the perfect moisturizer for barrier purposes. Which helped me 80% of the time.

3. Incorporate a skin care routine

-- You need a routine, and you cannot break out od that routine. I exfoliate and wash two times a day, and depending on what my skin needs in moisturizer, I would apply, some times at night it would be a completely different moisturizer than the morning. If you stick to that routine, I guarantee that you’ll notice a difference sooner or later


4. Be patient!

-- Please don’t expect your skin to look radiant after two washes, it doesn’t work like that, you have to stick with the routine for at least a month or two to see results. And that’s just the reality of it, nothing works over night, let’s be real with ourselves here. We set ourselves up to give up because we think something isn’t working as fast as we want it to work. Give it time.



How to deal with post partum blues

First, I want to say that postpartum blues and Post-partum depression are two different disorders. If you suffer from PPD, please contact a professional for help. Now, let’s face it, I believe most woman has dealt with some form of PPB. Postpartum blues is a mood disorder than affects women after birth. Some women have stated that along with their blues, they’ve experience anxiety, deep sadness and exhaustion. Some believe that PPB doesn’t really last long, usually right after childbirth and dissipates, but I feel it can last little longer or come and goes. I suffered from PPB after Ollie, I really didn’t know what it was, I felt overwhelmed, had crazy anxiety and felt alone; after a couple of months we went into quarantine and I needed to figure out how to get out of that rut, considering that being in lock down would only make things worse for me. So, how do you deal with Post-partum blues? The first step into ridding PPB is to find your happy space/place, whatever or wherever that is, will it be easy? Unfortunately it won’t. Because this process is part finding yourself in the middle of these job descriptions you have as a mother and a wife/gf. Find what makes you happy and try to do it often. For me it was photography and music. I don’t get to take photos often as I use to, so I do miss it, but if I feel really down, I’ll throw the babies in the car and take a countryside ride, and hopefully sneak in a photo or two here and there in the hopes that I don’t look crazy (that’s my anxiety talking by the way). The first line to Bob Marley’s Trenchtown Rock is “one good thing about music, when it hits you feel no pain” and that is the truth! Music heals the soul. One day I was feeling really sad, there was tightness in my chest and this heaviness on my head and shoulders, I needed to let this feeling out. The kids were playing in the living room and I asked Suri to play Adele’s “Don’t you remember”, and I cried just singing along. And you know what? that made me feel so much better, I can’t say I was 100%, but I felt relieved to let out whatever it was bottled up in there. Another way to deal with Post-partum blues is fresh air and vitamin D. I can’t express how important this is because the blues can easily turn into depression if not taken seriously. Nature is our #1 healer! Going out for a wooded walk, a park walk, a backyard picnic or even grilling some food for the family outdoors can help with PPB. It’s something about nature that is therapeutic; it’s free, take advantage. Add a little self care to your routine. Having time to take care of yourself makes a world of a difference. I know they state what women are strong, But are we really that damn strong or are we trying to live up to this stupid ass stereotype. No we need a break too, we need time too, we need to breathe too. Getting a spa treatment can easily flip things around for you. So treat yourself, don’t cheat yourself.... out of happiness. Lastly, ask for help! I do not have the luxury of help, I don’t live near family nor do I trust strangers with my children, and that’s just me, that’s not to disparage anyone else, you do what works for you and your family. But getting help to be able to do what you need/want to do changes the game, and if it’s a relative, even better. I feel like us women are harder on ourselves because a lot of this is overwhelmingly unexpected (motherhood) and sometimes we need to step back for an hour; for that countryside ride or spa treatment to recuperate while the kids are with daddy or grandparents. Also, this is important as well, your diet, what are you eating? What you eat is who you are, if you eat heavy, you're going to feel heavy, if you eat light and healthy, you're going to reflect that. Try your best to have a healthy balanced diet. ,That’s all I can think to share for today, I hope this can help you as much as it helped me, and know that regardless of anything you’re a great mom and your baby loves you the way things are. And I hope you take the necessary steps to be mindfully right for your and your family.

I also want to add, this isn't sponsored on my blog but I want to talk about taking vitamins and how imperative it is to keep taking your vitamins after birth. It is also important on what kind of vitamins you are taking. I was contacted by Perelel, a prenatal vitamin company that specifically focus on imbalances moms might have during a certain period during and after pregnancy. I started taking the Mom Multi Pack which provides a cocktail of vitamins that I would need post partum. 

After having Ollie, I continued to take my old gummy prenatal vitamins which is all truth, was not doing anything for me. I was still stressed, still tired and still lacking the nutrients I need to survive everyday motherhood. I started taking Perelel and feel a world of a different in energy as well as I noticed a difference in my hair and nails and, I am more than likely to wake up in brighter spirits.

Perelel provides packages for each stage in motherhood, from conception to post partum. Please, check out

Finding "Balance" in Parenthood

Caring for two children and being a house wife is work! In the beginning, I really thought I could do it because It was a bit of a breeze with Sage, because, it’s just one child. Even when Ollie was born, I was like “ok I got this, I can get the hang of it”. But do we really get the hang of motherhood/parenthood? Do we really know what we’re doing? No, we don’t. We are literally winging it everyday, and that’s the truth. I can write out every advice in the book, and I will from my perspective; but every child is different, they come with different temperaments, patience, rules and boundaries and the list goes on; it’s best to do what’s best for you and your child. However, I am still here to give you a few tips on how to balance it all and don’t get burnt out. 


1. Be patient - ‘there are no days the same’ 

  • We are so used to having everything done our way on our own time, and having children changes all of that. You can tell yourself, ‘I’ll be out the door to an appointment by 10am’, and the truth is you’re more than likely be late or won’t be able to make that appointment. Or you’ll have the whole day planned out on errands, and only one was accomplished through out that day. And the truth is that’s ok. I feel like this God’s way of telling us slow down and enjoy the in between. Because the in between doesn’t last. So I’ve learned to just accept things the way it is and appreciate the time that we have now. Also, if you’re like me, I love to have control of my life and my career, and the hardest thing for me was accept that my dream job/career might not come right now, and I can not blame my children for that because they didn’t ask to be here. So I have to be patient with my career and pursue it possibly at another time, or try and balance both but without holding animosity towards my children for simply wanting my attention.

2. Go with the flow - in the early years for children 0-3

  • We are such a militant society where we have to always be on time, dress a certain way, get up at a certain time, look a certain way that we enforce those same ideologies to our children. And at a young age they don’t really care bout these things. And I feel that I get more push back when I try to get my children in line on how society runs. Or, I’ll just get bombarded with the question of why, non stop, and that’ll just cause more confusion and frustration on both ends. So just go with the flow. 

3. Don’t be hard on yourself 

  •  This one is very hard. Because we live in a world where vanity wins. Everything must be perfect and you must be a perfect parent. No you do not! Parenthood is unpredictable and it’s hard. There are no rights or wrongs to this game on how you should parent YOUR child. Just because you see a mom with five kids that looks like she’s holding it down, doesn’t mean she is. And if she is, how do you know if she doesn’t have help? Or, just because you see this father take his children on a bike ride every week doesn’t make you less of a fun parent. Ask your child what would they like to do? Most of the time it’s some really simple like play, get some ice cream or even some form of craft. Do what works for you both, as long as you give your child time, they’ll love you unconditionally.
 4. Balance your time - self care 
  • This is another hard one. Well, it’s hard for me because I don’t live near family to help me with the kids, just so I can have some me time, or to simply catch up on the house work. But if you’re blessed with the help of extended family that is willing to watch your kids even for an hour, take it! You’ll be surprise what you can get done in one hr! You can take a candle lit bath, read a book, clean up, prep dinner; I mean, sky is the limit! Afterwards, by just having that time to just "think", you'll fell much better and it'll be easier for you to move forward into parenting again. You'd probably miss the kids at some point, well maybe not, but you get my drift.  
 I really hope this finds you and brings you comfort. Like I said, I am no way an expert in this considering that I am still learning myself. I just wish I had someone to tell me these things before becoming a parent. I would of been less anxious, I would of known what to expect and most of all I would of calmed down and take things one day at a time. Peace & Love.

Every Journey has its Own

How many times have you ask for advice as a new parent on how's parenthood, or how to get through a certain as easy and as fast as possible? Last night was my wake up call. Being a parent of two children is a kick in the gut challenge, that no one can prepare you for; and it is crazy that I am having this epiphany now. Last night the kids and I went to bed, both are co-sleepers so they are still bunking in our room until further notice. I placed Ollie in the bassinet when he fell asleep and then I cuddled Sage to sleep. As I dozed off in REM, I heard a blood curdling scream in my right ear. It was Ollie, screaming from the top of his lungs and I couldn't figure out why for the life of me. Then suddenly after 5 mins of trying to figure out whats wrong and what looks like me trying to wake him up, he fell back asleep like nothing happened. Oliver had a night terror. I've never experienced anything like this before. Even though I had Sage sleeping with my since birth, She's never woke up wailing before. Night terrors can be caused by several things, some say it could be due to over stimulation through out the day or before bed and the child is just reacting to it, which what I think is what happened. Though we are on a strict bedtime routine, occasionally we'll get off track with TV and good night plays with dad. I have decided to not do that anymore and keep every night calm. But the reason I decided to share this because, when I posted about that night on my IG stories, most of my friends reached out to comfort. And even though I am truly appreciative of them offering their space to me to vent, I realized, there's no actual guide to parenthood. You have to ride out this journey, alone. You can read a whole manuscript on what could happen, but truthfully, every child is different and you just never know what hand you are dealt. We can only offer advice on what might work, just don't quote me. I am at the very beginning of motherhood and though I am tired, I some days can not be bothered and I am ready for bed by 8pm. By the end of the day I'll chuckle to myself and say my kids are really funny and drive me nuts but I love them, and I am sure I'll be laughing at all this crazy journey when I am old. One of my friends on IG told me you have to deal with it one day at a time, literally, and I would say "in parenthood, there are no two days the same" Every day you'll deal with something different. Stop expecting things to be smooth and know that you have a lot of bumpy roads ahead.... and thats OK! Every journey has its own Thank you for reading...

I Love Your Brown Skin

Transparency time: I cried the first time I heard brown skin girl by Beyoncé. I had to try and hold back the ugly cry in front of my family. Some of you understand why, but for those who don’t; We dark skin women have this on going battle with our self esteem for a long time and as a kid lighter skin is all I saw on every single medium. Then I grew up in the 90’s and early 2000’s when “light skin was in”; that’s literally the saying “light skin is in”. Do you know what did to my self esteem? I hated taking photos of myself, I would stay out of the sun. Forget about dating, if you liked a guy the first thing you would think about is 'I hope he likes dark skin girls'. The list goes on that we would need a book to write about it. Anyway... While watching Beyoncé’s beautiful ‘Black is King’ music visuals, brown skin girls came on, all these emotions, thoughts in my head, flashbacks to my childhood, I broke down. Because, in truth, I needed that song when I was a kid; and to see Sage watching the video, dancing, singing along, taking the words in, and comprehending, it made me feel so happy. I kind of felt like a kid again, sort of. Even though I tell Sage every single day, you’re a black girl, we are great, fearless, smart, etc etc. In addition to talking about black hair and how versatile it is, just so she doesn’t feel like it’s lesser than that girl with long wavy hair. However, truthfully, there’s but so much I can do to make her confident in her own skin, she has to see it as well. I am so grateful for that song, it couldn't have come at a better time. I can’t even listen to it without choking up. Outfits from: Shoparq

Buck & Baa Review

My love for children's fashion since having kids of my own has increased to the tenth power. Before I having Sage, I had a baby shower and of course family showers you with bunch of gifts and clothes, which I am still trull grateful for since I still use some items for Ollie. However there was one thing I got too much of, clothes, so much that Sage couldn't even wear, so I ended up giving most away. But let me stop lying, I threw or gave away 85% of those clothes if I thought they were just not my style. You see, I am a simple, basic, minimal girl. I hate bright colors and itchy tulle fabric. I hate truck logos and purple and fuchsia dragons. I like my children's clothing to be simple, can wear around all season and even gender neutral. So that sent me on a search for new lines, smaller businesses that basically understand that we can still look cool without all the extras. The first brand I found was Buck & Baa; I was instantly in love by their earth tone hues, simple cotton fabric and minimal patterns, that had gracefully flow through the seasons. The first time I purchase some pieces was for Ollie before I had him, and I couldn't wait to wrap him in the swaddle blanket that just ascetically went well with our home decor and warm feel. Just so darn cute, I will try and blog more. It is so very hard to do it with the kids, I'll have something I want to talk about but then I'll forget because of the demands of the kids


Hi, I know, I know, it’s been a while. There is so much I don’t even know where to start. I created this blog when I started college. I was young, creative and outgoing and I loved fashion and art so I started this blog Black & Olive to express that love and show my creativity. Somehow in between then I found my passion in photography, and for what I can remember, Instagram sparked that passion. I went out and bought my first professional camera; I carried it every where and shot whatever I thought that was beautiful. I became obsessed, but it was a hobby that wasn’t making any money. But now my life has changed, I am a full time mom raising two children and a dog with my fiancé. My home is in chaos 24/7, so the only things I can get creative with is how to keep the kids busy so I can wash a dish, load the laundry etc etc. You moms know what I am talking about. Anyway, so back to I was saying before I got all story telling. I created Black & Olive to share my creativity with the world, but now that I am a mom, I figured I change things up a bit in here and dust off the place because it was looking extremely outdated, like who I was before (young, fun college student. I was no longer sharing art and beauty, I couldn’t with baby spinach on my clothes and running behind a potty training toddler that wants to pee every freaking 5 mins! The only I can offer is motherhood, my journey through motherhood with a little photography of course because that’s still what I love to do.



Shirt - Vintage
Jeans - Levi's
Earrings - Madewell
Vase - Target
Faux Eucalyptus - Target
Runner - Pottery Barn


Love the Uncomfortable

"It's good to do uncomfortable things. It's weight training for life" - Anne Lamott

For at least two years I have been very reserved, especially since having Sage. I was going through a rough life transition; I think I was unsure on who I wanted to be. I am still unsure at times; but I think that is apart of "the life journey". Anyway, I made a promise to myself this year to try some uncomfortable things for the sake of love. Love for family, love for work, love for time, love for passions and most of all love for me. 

Robe: Pottery Barn
Bedding: Ugg