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How to Survive Your All Girls Weekend

You’ve been invited to an all-inclusive getaway with your girlfriends. You’re so excited that your bags have been packed weeks leading up to the trip. Sunglasses? Check. Sarong? Check. A few cute bikinis? Check. Your studded flip flops check? You’re more than ready to embark upon this all girls vacay with a group of your favorite BFF’s and some of their girlfriends too! Sounds like tons of fun... Or maybe not!

Who doesn’t want to go on a fab vacation? Tahiti, Paris, the Bahamas, Cayman Islands! Throw a dart at the map and just go to a place where you can have lots of fun in the sun, beach time, great continental breakfasts, pool side lounging, and all the rest. But not so fast! Whenever two are more people are gathered, trust there are politics involved. And to add 3, 4, 5, 6 or 8 more people to the mix there is bound to be a conflict of some sort. We saw it most recently on the Real Housewives of Atlanta episode, where the girls journeyed to South Africa, and more than the usual tension filled the room. And you don’t want your vacation going awry over unnecessary tom-foolery. So here are 4 things to keep in mind while you embark upon your own all girls’ vacation.

Everyone is not going to have the same interest. A vacation for some may mean volunteering with an NGO. For others, it could mean luxuriating by the pool with a book or mean indulgences with spa treatments or it’s the perfect opportunity to immerse themselves in the culture as much as possible. Whatever your intentions are on your vacation, try to be flexible to gaining as much from the experience as possible.

5 Star Chic vs. Hostel Chic. Everyone does not expect the same type of accommodations when they travel. While 800-thread count Egyptian cotton sheets are a prerequisite for some, there are other travelers who are more budget-conscious or who would genuinely prefer to stay in a hostel or less frilly accommodations.  You don’t want to be uncomfortable on your vacation, while at the same time you don’t want to be totally inflexible. Know what it is you require in your lodging and provide some wiggle room to experience a gamut of opportunities. Hostels are, after all, said to be one of the best places to meet people while traveling.

Ladies Can Be Clique-ish. Especially when going on a trip with friends, who are also friends of friends. Alliances can be formed, which can invariably cause someone to be a third wheel. This is where being flexible is so important. As aforementioned, take the time out to participate in activities that the group can participate in together. Zip-lining, horseback riding, wine tasting, a concert, something to lessen the tension and help you refocus on the amazing time to be had while you are away.

Try something new! After all this is one of the foremost points of traveling, but if you do not have much travel experience, adopting to new things, hearing new languages, tasting new food, listening to different music can be a bit overwhelming. Push yourself anyway to do and try something you never would have done at home. Eat a chicken liver, try to dance Samba, learn a few words in the local language to interact with the natives. Don’t be scared!

Ignore her.  There is bound to be someone on the trip that is going to irk your soul. The know-it-all who has been to fifty-eleven countries, and speaks another fifty-eleven languages, who has designated herself as the group tour guide. Or the chick that has taken the trip to indulge in international hoe-tivity? Whatever the case, if it’s not life-threatening, or putting you in a compromising situation, let it go and enjoy the new atmosphere. It’s probably not that serious, and no one should be able to cause you not to have a good vacay! --Phalena Jean

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Kush & Splendor: 5 CBD Beauty Products That’ll Take Your Self-Care Routine From 0 To 100

Lotions, creams, and salves—oh my! With cannabidiol (CBD) popping up in just about every product you can imagine, the cannabis-infused beauty industry is clearly on the come-up. In fact, analysts predict that the “wellness” movement—as well as the legalization of Mary Jane across the world—will help rake in $25 billion globally in the next 10 years, according to Business Insider. That’s 15 percent of the $167 billion skincare market.

And what better way to up the ante on one’s wellness routine than with all-natural CBD? Just ask Dr. Lana Butner, naturopathic doctor and acupuncturist at NYC’s Modrn Sanctuary, who incorporates CBD in her treatments.

“CBD is a fantastic addition to acupuncture sessions for both its relaxation and anti-inflammatory, pain-relieving effects,” Butner shares with Vixen. “The calming effects of CBD allows for patients to deeply relax into the treatment and really tap into the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for rest, digestion and muscle repair/regeneration.”

She adds that CBD’s pain-relieving effects are “far-reaching,” from muscular and joint pains to migraines and arthritis—and even IBS and indigestion.

The magic lies in CBD’s ability to impact endocannabinoid receptor activity in our bodies. Without getting too wordy, our bodies come equipped with a system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is the HBIC over our sleep, appetite, pain and immune system response. Also known as cannabidiol, CBD teams up with this system to help reduce inflammation and interact with neurotransmitters. According to Healthline, CBD has also been scientifically shown to impact the brain’s receptors for serotonin, the neurotransmitter responsible for regulating our mood and social behavior.

All that said, it’s important to note that not all CBD products are created equal. Many brands cashing in on the green beauty wave use hemp seed oil, sometimes referred to as cannabis sativa seed oil, in place of CBD... which doesn’t make them any less great! Hemp seed oil is actually high in antioxidants, amino acids, and omega-3 and -6 fatty acids—all of which are thebomb.com for your skin.

“It’s generally viewed as a superfood and is great for adding nutritional value to your diet,” Ashley Lewis, co-founder of Fleur Marché, told Well and Good last month. “In terms of skin care, it’s known as a powerful moisturizer and skin softener that doesn’t clog pores or contribute to oily skin.”

However, when companies start marketing CBD and hemp oil as one-in-the-same, that’s when things get a bit tricky.

“The biggest issue is that hemp seed oil and CBD are two totally different compounds that come from different parts of the hemp plant, have different makeups, and different benefits,” Lewis added. “Marketing them as the same thing just isn’t accurate and does a disservice to consumers who are expecting certain benefits that they won’t get from hemp seed oil and who are often paying more for what they think is CBD.”

So if you’re looking to benefit from the perks specifically attributed to CBD, make sure you’re reading labels before buying, and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Hell, ask for a product’s test results, while you’re at it. It never hurts to be sure.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, are you ready to see what all the hype is about? For this 4/20, we rounded up a few CBD (and hemp!)-infused products to help give your self-care routine a bit of a boost. Looks like your holiday just got that much kushier. You’re welcome!

Note: Data and regulations surrounding CBD and its use are still in development. That said, please don’t take anything written in this post as medical or legal advice, and definitely double check the laws in your state. Also, please do your body a favor and hit up your doctor before trying any new supplements. We’re just tryna look out for you. Okay? Okay. Read on.

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Vivica A. Fox Explains Past Hesitance Behind 'Two Can Play That Game' Script

In a new interview with Essence, actress Vivica A. Fox discussed how she initially turned down her role in Two Can Play That Game based on the script. The established entertainer said it's her mission to ensure that black people are positively portrayed onscreen, and noticed the aforementioned film's prose didn't live up to those standards.

"I think the reason why—no I know the reason why—I've been doing this for such a long time is that I fight," Fox said. "When we did Two Can Play That Game, I fought for the way we talked, walked, the way we loved each other." The Set It Off actress continued to state that she consistently declined Two Can Play That Game before signing on to play the lead role. "Because the script, when I first got it, I turned it down three times because it just wasn't a good representation of African-Americans, so I fought them on everything," she noted. "I want to make sure that the images of African-Americans are as positive and as true as they can possibly be."

In 2001, the romantic comedy debuted to fanfare, boasting an all-star cast of Morris Chestnut, Mo'Nique, Anthony Anderson, Bobby Brown, Gabrielle Union, Wendy Raquel Robinson, and more. Directed by Mark Brown (Barbershop, Iverson, How To Be A Player), Fox plays a career driven person named Shante Smith who navigates a curveball when her boyfriend Keith Fenton (Chestnut) cheats on her with a co-worker.

After its release, Two Can Play That Game raked in over $22 million at the box office.

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Actress Gabrielle Union attends the Being Mary Jane premiere, screening, and party on January 9, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Bennett Raglin/Getty Images for BET)
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BET To Unveil Edible Billboard For 'Being Mary Jane' Wedding Finale

As Being Mary Jane comes to an end, BET is willing to offer fans a taste of what's to come in the series finale.

The network has enlisted the help of Ayesha Curry, celebrity cook and cookbook author, to create an edible billboard that also doubles as a wedding cake. The sweet treat will commemorate Mary Jane's (played by Gabrielle Union) nuptials in the two-hour series finale.

On April 20 from 1:00 P.M. to 7:00 P.M. at Brooklyn's Atlantic Terminal in New York, fans will be presented with the edible billboard. At the intersection of Ashland Place and Hanson Place, the closer Being Mary Jane enthusiasts get to the billboard the quicker they'll notice that the four-tiered wedding cake is created from individual boxes, each containing a slice of Curry's prized wedding cake.

All fans have to do is pull a box from the billboard, snap a picture for the 'Gram, take a bite and enjoy. Although lovers of the show won't be able to celebrate with Mary Jane herself, biting into a slice of her wedding cake, for free, is the next best thing.

Don't forget to tune into the series finale of Being Mary Jane on Tues. (April 23) at 8/7 c.

Also, check out what's to come on the series of Being Mary Jane below.

Save the date! 👰🏾It'll be worth the wait. Join us for the series finale of #BeingMaryJane TUES APR 23 8/7c only on @BET! pic.twitter.com/jEwkbC71OW

— #BeingMaryJane (@beingmaryjane) March 29, 2019

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