Friday, April 20, 2018

That one time I was Interviewed on TV

RVNTV' s Morning Coffee with Krista Smolda
This week was a pretty exciting one here in Reclaimed World.

I had the opportunity to talk all things Reclaimed and blog life on RVNTV's show,  Morning Coffee. This was my first TV interview, so nervousness is kind of an understatement.

First, following the initial freak out and regathering of myself, y'all know I had to figure out what in the world I was going to wear! Your friend Earl helped me out with this. A few week's back, he bought me these Banana Republic printed pants that were perfect for taping day. And you know I couldn't go and talk about The Reclaimed, a blog born from thrift shopping, without wearing a few of my favorite thrifted finds! Once that was out of the way, and the twist-out fresh, I was off to the studio.

The show was live and I was interviewed by the fun and very kind Krista Smolda, RVNTV's Director of Operations. We had an awesome time and I am to grateful to have had such a fun growing experience.

Check out the full interview at RVNTV.

Reclaimed Readables

Happy Friday, loves!

Today's Readables feature Dooplex, the Sephora of Black Beauty, Target introduced 8 beauty brands by women of color, 30 easy skincare tips you'll wished you knew about sooner, 13 face masks that up your skincare game, 10 things to give up for better skin according to dermatologist, and a fashion editor's no heat hair routine.

Fashionista: Dooplex, the "Sephora of Black Beauty"
Man Repeller: A fashion editor's no heat hair routine
Well+Good: Target introduced 8 beauty brands by women of color
BuzzFeed: 30 easy skincare tips you'll wished you knew about sooner
Byrdie: 13 face masks that up your skincare game, 10 things to give up for better skin according to dermatologist

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Reclaimed Readables

Happy Thursday loves!

Today's Readables feature 7 sneaky ways to save money for a house, what fights about money reveal about marriage, how much to spend on treating yourself, how one woman tripled her salary in 4 years, and how to spring clean your finances.

My Domaine: How one woman tripled her salary in 4 years
Hello Giggles: 7 sneaky ways to save money for a house, how much to spend on treating yourself
Relevant Mag: What fights about money reveal about marriage
Well+Good: How to spring clean your finances

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

When Fleek is so not on Fleek: How to Overcome Cultural Theft

This post was inspired by a few episodes of the podcast, Strong Opinions Loosely Held.

How much do we think about the memes, gifs, and slang we use?

Probably not very much. We cackle about memes aptly sent, we slap on gifs of ridiculous reactions and responses to communicate even the most minute of emotions, and we toss slang around like nothing.

But what if there was a deeper cost to the digital images and popular sayings we use? What if even the most well meaning social media user was actually guilty of crimes of Black Face and Cultural Appropriation?

I know, I know. You're tossing your arms in the air. "Whitney, it's just a gif. It's just slang. It doesn't really mean anything, right?"

Actually, no. Not right.

Let's take for example the word fleek.

I have to be honest, I personally am not a fan of the word fleek. However, I would be remiss if I didn't acknowledge its simple yet effective staying power. For a few years, everything was "on fleek", "fleeky" and so on. It was scribed on t shirts and hats, sung about or rapped in popular songs, even national restaurant chains tossed the word around.

And yet, many of these large corporations or popular artists, or even many of us regular folk ever gave credit to the originator of the word, teenager Kayla Newman better known as Peaches Monroe. Peaches on a viral Vine video is seen as the first user of the word "fleek".

Following this, the word fleek travels around the world. It ends up in songs and commercials, on clothes and tossed about by celebrities. Meanwhile Kayla received nothing for fleek. Nothing.

Only after hearing these opinions did I realize the tragedy of it all.

Grumpy Cat has a book deal, Chewbacka Mom received scholarship for her kids, the Damn Daniel kid made an appearance on Ellen and a lifetime supply of sneakers, and the "cash me outside" girl is making up to $30K for meet and greets but the young Black woman, Peaches Monroe, who created a word, y'all, was virtually begging on her now deactivated page on GoFundMe for coin to create her own beauty line?

There is something VERY WRONG with this.

Fleek made it to the dictionary, yall! And it's creator never really received the credit due to her.

Kayla's story is unfortunately not uncommon.

In fact, it is very common for popular culture the look at an element of Black culture and deem it just part of the cultural zeitgeist, to take it and use it as it's own on exchange for the opportunity to look cool. Also known as stealing, culture vulturing, or, one of the popular terms around this little blog, cultural appropriation.

Black culture, not seen as it's own unique culture, is regularly pilfered from, often to be commodified. It is seen as something not belonging to that cultural group, but something that belongs to the entirety of popular society. Black culture is seen as not belonging to the Black culture. This disempowers Black people, especially Black creatives, who very often do not receive the credit (or the coin) due to them by popular society.

So where is Peaches now? Cannot say. As I have said, her GoFundMe has since been deactivated and she has seeming disappeared from the scene. But her story is critical to those of us who are creators, to guard our intellectual property, to make sure we are properly credited in everything we share, and to have a plan for potential virality.

We also must continue to tell stories like Kayla's. We must make sure that we hold ourselves accountable, and others as well. We must let people know about the potential deterrents to sharing in today's highly connected, voracious internet culture, whether its memes or adding to the lexicon.

Now that is so on fleek.

Reclaimed Readables #WomenCrushWednesday

This week's #WomanCrushWednesday features Ocean's 8 is a feminist heist film to love, where to watch the full Beyoncé Coachella performance, the coolest hair cuff styles, Sasheer Zamata on her style evolution, and trailblazing who won't be wallflowers.

BuzzFeed: Ocean's 8 is a feminist heist film to love
Fashion Bomb Daily: Watch the full Beyoncé Coachella performance
Refinery29: The coolest hair cuff styles
Coveteur: Sasheer Zamata on her style evolution
My Domaine: Trailblazing who won't be wallflowers