Monthly Archives: November 2009

Spotlight On: Faye Wattleton

How many people have been honored as one of the most influential people in America, one of the 100 most fascinating black women in the 20th century, one of the most beautiful people in America and the world, one of the best managers of non-profit organizations in America, and a recipient of 13 honorary doctorates? Arguably very few; but one thing is for sure, Faye Wattleton’s no-nonsense approach and commitment to her convictions have gained her tremendous recognition throughout her career.

Born Alyce Faye Wattleton in then segregated St. Louis, Missouri, Faye was the only child to her mother, Ozie, and her father, George. Faye entered school at the tender age of four and advanced straight to second grade given her intelligence at such an early age. While Faye was growing up, Ozie, a seamstress and evangelical minister, became a pastor of a church that required her and George to travel quite a bit. Over the course of eight years during Faye’s childhood, her parents traveled leaving Faye with church members and family friends.  Though Faye’s parents instilled values of ethics, spirituality and independent thinking, her experience staying with other families was very different. In her book, Life on the Line, she describes the families she stayed with had “impermanent ‘homes’ [that] were governed by strict rules enforced mostly without the love and tolerance of my family. I was left to my own devices, to adapt to every circumstance. It was a lonely, guarded existence.”

At 16 years old, Faye went to college, attending Ohio State University where she received a Bachelor’s degree in nursing, fulfilling a dream she had since four years old to become a nurse.  But it was while attending Columbia University on a full scholarship where she first began to understand the impact of unsafe abortions.  While working at Harlem Hospital she cared for numerous women who had suffered from complications from illegal abortions. The images of these women never left her. After she received a Master of Science degree in maternal and infant care and a certification in midwifery, she returned to Ohio where she not only was an assistant director of the Montgomery County Combined Public Health District, but she also joined the local Planned Parenthood board. A little more than a decade later Faye was named president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. This post would make her the first black, youngest, and only second female to hold this position since the organization’s inception.

Throughout nearly 15 years as president of Planned Parenthood, Faye tirelessly fought for women’s rights and specifically reproductive rights, enduring ridicule, opposition and even death threats. Despite these negative forces, she continued to raise the important issues and ultimately became one of the most prominent voices for women’s reproductive rights. In 1995 Faye co-founded the Center for the Advancement of Women (CFAW) and is currently the president of the organization. Through the CFAW she has continued her crusade for fighting for women’s rights and has ultimately been able to bring to light many women’s issues and necessary policy changes.
As if that is not enough, Faye has a daughter and over the years has been on the board of numerous organizations including Estee Lauder, Columbia University, Jazz at Lincoln Center, the United Nations Association of the USA, and the New York Blood Center. Regardless of whether you agree or disagree with Faye’s stance on certain issues, no one can argue her commitment and impact on women’s rights in this country. Not only are her accomplishments inspiring, but she also shows us how fabulous you can be at 66 years old.

Check out Faye in her own words on The Black List Volume 1


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Chic Holiday Decor











As we all know, once one holiday ends, another one begins. And before some of your Thanksgiving leftovers have cooled in the fridge, many of you will be putting up your holiday decorations and planning for holiday parties. To help you “keep it chic” this holiday season, we’ve selected our favorites whether decorating for your home or entertaining guests.

Holiday Home Decor
1. Artificial Berry Wreath, Pier 1
2. Whimsy Collection – Aqua, Z Gallerie
3. Rattan Cone Trees, Pier 1
4. Shimmer Green Pillow, Crate and Barrel
5. JLA Wine Embroidered Pillow, Target

Holiday Entertaining

6. Two-Toned Chocolate Beaded Table Linens, Z Gallerie
7. Jubilee Red Placemat/Cotton Flame Napkin, Crate and Barrel
8. Marimekko ® Mustikkamaa Napkin, Crate and Barrel
9. Candy Cane Martini Glasses, Cost Plus World Market
10. Ruffle Foil Chargers Set of Four, Crate and Barrel

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What We’re Thankful For…

It goes without saying that being thankful for the blessings in our lives should be something we do consistently not just during a holiday. Nevertheless, the holiday season has an uncanny way of plucking our sentimental heart strings more than any other time of year.  Perhaps it’s the realization that the year is ending or maybe it’s the reconnecting with family and friends. Whatever it is, we’re definitely feeling it right now. So in the spirit of Thanksgiving we’ve decided to share a few things we’re particularly thankful for right now and we ask that you too share what it is you’re thankful for by posting your comments below.

We’re thankful for…

–          Our families whose love and guidance has been a constant source of joy in our lives

–          Our friends near and far; those we talk to regularly and those we talk to occasionally, who continue to show their unconditional support and love

–          The many character building “blessings in the lessons” that we’ve experienced this year that have undoubtedly made us stronger

–         Being able to maintain a positive attitude even when faced with obstacles

–          Living in a time where we can gain higher education, lead global organizations, and have no limitations to what we can accomplish

–          YOU!! Our fantastic Vyne readers who keep us motivated to do what we do. Thanks for all of the love you’ve shown us in our inaugural year of The Vyne blog and The Vyne Weekly.

Let us hear from you! Tell us what you’re thankful for by posting your comments below. Happy Thanksgiving!

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Holiday Health Tips

By Siddiqu “The Personal Trainer”

Ok so we are embarking on yet another Thanksgiving holiday. This is the time of the year where all my clients seem to fall completely off! But this year can be different for you if you follow the Chicago Fit 4 Life holiday health tips. I gave you the secret to getting a six pack   so trust me when I say you can still enjoy this time of year without putting on 5-10lbs that will take you all next year to work off.

CF4L Holiday Health Tips 

Tip #1:  Fasting – Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner is usually eaten earlier in the day because we typically are not going into work on these days. Why not just take the day completely off? By that I mean, no eating the entire day until you sit down for your holiday meal. Drink a lot of water during the day. The body can process about 700 calories at once. Excess calories tend to be stored and can turn to fat rather quickly.

Tip #2: Alcohol – Most of the time holidays fall on a weekday and we don’t have to work the next day, so we tend to indulge ourselves with that extra glass of wine or a cocktail. Wrong! Alcohol consumption quickly adds extra calories, offers little health benefits, and will leave you with unwanted pounds that will take all year to get off. Alcohol suppresses the central nervous system. When alcohol is added to a meal, less fat is burned on average which causes more fat to be stored by the body.

Tip #3: Be Active – Be active on the holiday. Start the day off with a 30 min. walk, then after dinner do another 30 min walk. This will give you one hour of cardio which can burn anywhere from 200-500 calories. It will help you offset at least your dessert for that day.

Tip #4: Holiday not Holi-month! – Just eat one dinner, one day and move on. Too many times we try to re-live Thanksgiving all the way up until Christmas. We bring Thanksgiving dinner for lunch, then go home and eat the dinner again and do this day after day until all the food has been consumed. What we don’t realize is the effect this has on our body. Thanksgiving dinner is on average 3,000 calories and 300 grams of fat. So consider cooking less food this year to cut down on the obligatory “left over” eating.

Siddiqu is a personal trainer & founder of Chicago Fit 4 Life


Filed under Food and Drink, Uncategorized, Wellness

Blouse We’re Loving

We love love love this Rose Ruffled Blouse by Oscar de la Renta.  At $690 we won’t be rushing to get it, but a girl can dream, can’t she?

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Spotlight On: Michelle Fenty

Michelle Fenty

“I grew up with Margaret Thatcher, so for me it’s nothing new. I know a woman can run a country,” – Michelle Fenty

She’s stylish, accomplished and a force to be reckoned with. Meet Washington, D.C.’s other “First Lady”, Michelle Fenty, wife of D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty.

Born and raised just outside of London, Michelle is one of three daughters. Her parents, who are of Jamaican descent, did not move to the United States until Michelle was 18 years old. The move was prompted by the Michelle’s parents wanting to be closer their parents who had moved to New York City. It was perhaps her move to the big apple that sparked her career aspirations. “I grew up wanting to be a teacher. Part of that was not being exposed to female lawyers and doctors. It wasn’t until I was much older that I decided on the law.” Michelle chose Howard Law School in 1994 as the place to begin honing the intellectual capital that she still relies on to this day. It was at Howard Law School that she met her future husband who coincidentally asked her to be his mentor. “I was a couple years ahead of him, a third year preparing to get out when he was coming in.” Not surprisingly, Adrian Fenty had a crush on his new mentor and it wasn’t long before they began dating long distance after Michelle graduated and moved back to New York. As the saying goes, the rest is history, as the couple eventually wed and currently are the parents to twin 9-year-old boys and an 11 month-old daughter.

If you were to research Michelle online, you would likely not find too many personal details about her life, but what you will find are the kind of accomplishments and noteworthy community involvement that would make any woman proud to read about. Michelle is still a practicing attorney, specializing in the intricate field of global technology. When asked about her choice to continue her career, Michelle had this to say, “I have spent a lot of years studying to be an attorney, and I felt it was important for me to continue to work and contribute,” she says, “Not just to my household, but to my personal fulfillment as well.” As if being a mother to three young children and the wife of a politician weren’t enough to contend with, Michelle has also taken on some major charitable efforts including servings as president of the advisory board for the Capital Breast Cancer Center and previous involvement supporting the Boys and Girls Clubs of Washington. Michelle does all of this while at the same time maintaining a sophisticated style that got her recognized by The Washingtonian.

It’s hard not to draw the parallels between Michelle Fenty and First Lady Michelle Obama. Oh to be a fly on the wall when these two powerhouse women take time out to support each other’s charitable events as they have done on several occasions in the past. Michelle Fenty is a career woman, a mother, a wife in the spotlight and a community leader. When asked about how she handles it all, her response was simply, “I basically approach each day knowing that I may not accomplish the goals I set out to do in the morning, but I’m OK with that because, at the end of the day, I am trying to achieve so many things.”

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Beauty Smackdown: Foundation

It is so difficult to find the perfect foundation, especially for women of color. So many don’t come in the right shades, are too thick, not enough coverage or cause breakouts.  Needless to say, finding the best match can be daunting. To help you with your search, we’ve put two full coverage foundations head to head in this week’s Beauty Smackdown.

Contestant #1: MAC Studio Fix
Studio Fix by MAC is a powder makeup that goes on with as much coverage as a cream foundation. It comes with a sponge that applies the color smoothly and evenly. Some people like to use a brush instead for lighter coverage. One thing to note is that it usually looks lighter than your skin shade when it first is applied, but once it settles and mixes with your skin’s natural oils, it darkens a bit (so don’t be worried if it looks pasty when you first put it on). MAC Studio Fix comes in 33 shades with nine being for darker complexions.

Pros: The color was close to my skin color, the sponge blended in the foundation well, worked well on my sensitive skin, and one container lasts 6 months (with everyday wear).

Cons: Though it was a powder, it did not control my oily t-zone and it also settled into my creases after a while.

Color Quality: 3.5 out of 5
Coverage: 4.5 out of 5
Length of Wear: 3.5 out of 5
Kindness to Skin: 3.5 out of 5
Price: $26 for .52 oz

Contestant #2: Make Up For Ever HD Invisible Cover Foundation
HD Invisible Cover Foundation by Make Up For Ever was created to suit professional use on HD film and, according to, “covers skin imperfections flawlessly while remaining invisible on-screen and in real life.” The foundation comes in liquid form and though it is full coverage, it feels light to the skin. It comes in a pump and is best applied by a brush (though, truth be told, I sometimes use my fingers). The foundation has a good color selection since it comes in 25 shades with 12 being for darker complexions. Not only are the shades based on skin color, they are also based on undertone so you can truly match you skin.

Pros: Looked natural, full coverage without feeling heavy, worked well on my sensitive skin and excellent color selection.

Cons: Didn’t completely control the oily t-zone and more expensive up front (though per oz cost is less than MAC).

Color Quality: 4.5 out of 5
Coverage: 4 out of 5
Length of Wear: 3.5 out of 5
Kindness to Skin: 4 out of 5
Price: $40 for 1.01 oz.

Winner: Make Up For Ever HD Invisible Cover Foundation

Have you tried either of these? If so, what did you like/dislike? Also, what are your favorite foundations?

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