Mz. Skittlez, is CEO and designer of the bold, yet sweet streetwear clothing line Cupcake Mafia. For those not familiar with the term “Cupcake” it is a woman that is on her grind, she’s a hard-worker and a boss. It’s Cupcake Mafia’s goal to not only enrobe women with their confections but to also unite them and inspire each Cupcake to reach her goals.

The line began in Cleveland, Ohio with $300 dollars, 30 t-shirts, 5 dedicated team members and 1 woman with a vision. Today, that vision has grown into a international brand that can be purchased in 800 stores.  Recently her Atlanta flagship store celebrated its 1-year anniversary . I was able to chat with Mz. Skittlez shortly after the opening and she had this to say about her flagship celebration,” It was amazing,…clothes, nails and cupcakes!” She also mentioned that she may be opening up a store in New York, but no promises just yet. Come Spring 2016 expect a collaboration with Jeffrey Campbell as well as a yet to be disclosed sneaker collab. In the meantime, school-bound Cupcakes can grab limited-edition Cupcake Mafia backpacks at Sprayground.

How has Mz. Skittlez been able to develop such a dynamic brand? Well..the brand has an amazing social media presence and a host of celebrities that have endorsed Cupcake Mafia from its inception. Yet, their strongest driving force is the deep connection that the brand has built with its fellow Cupcakes. Mz. Skittlez exclaims that,


“Cupcake Mafia allows women to say things they normally wouldn’t say…it offers them a way to say it through fashion.”

Undoubtedly, her road to success was paved with some rough patches that she bravely shared  in her book, ‘The Icing On Top Ain’t Always Sweet.’  “I used to be ashamed of my life story like that I was homeless, I thought it would ruin my credibility”, says Mz. Skittlez. In the course of sharing her story she has learned that she could and has made a great impact on young women.

Her dedication to helping her fellow woman is an enduring one. She adds, “ I feel like my life is open, I am in the process of writing [another] book, what it took to build a brand. Everything on the intel about how to start a business” Lastly, Mz. Skittlez did have this bit of wisdom to share with aspiring female entrepreneurs, “A slow life to the top is better than a fast fall to the bottom.”

Please be sure to keep up with Mz. Skittlez at and visit Cupcake Mafia to shop her newest collection.

By: Michelle Gill

Published on September 2, 2015


Vanessa Blake is a UK-based vegan and natural cosmetic/skincare company celebrating their first-year in the United States.  I chatted with Roschelle, Head of Marketing and Sales for the company concerning the reason for Vanessa Blake Cosmetic’s commitment to vegan and natural products. Roschelle commented, “In our everyday life we are exposed to toxins, our skin is made up of pores everything that is on us, goes in us.”

glosspot-postcardVB cosmetics emphasize their dedication to plant-based and natural products by injecting a high-level of communication and education surrounding the benefits of their natural-ingredient infused cosmetics.  “We are all about making your skin healthy and not just to it cover up… we also heal the skin and as well as enhance,” explained Roschelle.

Another unique attribute of Vanessa Blake Cosmetics, they are among a small group of bespoke makeup companies. Bespoke cosmetics are a new genre within the makeup world; it refers to the capability of customers to create custom-blended foundations, skincare, lipsticks and other makeup products.  “I am in love with the foundation, we match the skin perfectly, and there’s not a color we can’t match. Our coverage is wonderful, it allows your skin to breathe,” exclaims Roschelle

mattebeauty-postcardFor the price of $45 to $50 you can receive a customized foundation and formula specifically made for your skincare needs. This is a great value considering that foundations from Lancôme or Dior cost the same; yet do not offer the enhanced benefits of Vanessa Blake Cosmetics. To top it all off, each customer’s custom-blended formulation is kept on file with VB cosmetics, making it easy to reorder and have it shipped to your home.

Now…where can you find them? Currently, their first location is in the Perimeter Mall in Atlanta, GA. They have a kiosk that is located outside of the Macy’s. While they currently only have one physical US location, “it is our goal to be in every household,” says Roschelle. Be sure to stop by for a consultation if you live in the Atlanta area and checkout their newest fall lipstick color, “Cabernet”.

For those of you who are not able to visit Vanessa Blake Cosmetics ,you can shop their products online. Otherwise you are urged to visit their instagram @bespokebyVB to see how the custom-blend process is performed.

Written by Michelle Gill

Published on Novembern15, 2015


Criminal Minds fans will recognize Hailey Sole as “Meg Callahan” the daughter to Jennifer Love Hewitt’s character on the television series. IMG_7786The 13 year-old also will star in the cult-classic reprise of Wet Hot American Summer. For a quick refresher, Wet Hot American Summer was an independent film centered around a group of camp counselors who use their last day at camp to settle some unfinished business. Hailey’s character, “Amy” features a whole new set of campers on the eight-part Netflix series, ‘Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp’. Luckily, I got a chance to catch-up with the busy and budding Hollywood star for an interview.

KG: How does it feel to be an emerging “it girl” in Hollywood?

HS: Never really thought about myself as the “it girl”, I just love acting. It feels great that I am able to live out my dream.

KG: With Season 10 of Criminal Minds wrapped and Jennifer love Hewitt’s character departing, will Meg depart as well?

HS: Yes, Meg will depart as well.

KG: You just finished Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp. What was it like being on set?

HS: The comedians were absolutely hilarious and it was an awesome experience. It was cool to get to know them on a different level besides just the characters that I’ve seen them play.

KG: I heard you love to sing, what song is stuck in your head at the moment? Do you play an instrument?

HS: No, I don’t play any instruments, but ‘Bad Blood” by Taylor Swift, featuring Kendrick Lamar is on repeat for me.

KG: You do so much outside of being an actress, how do you balance being a teen superstar and a regular teen?

HS: I don’t think it’s that hard to balance being an actress and being a regular teen. I go to school. When I am filming my teachers give me the assignments I’ll miss.  Once I return to school I turn in all my schoolwork.

img_7826KG: How do you deal with the haters? What advice do you have for young girls dealing with bullies?

HS: Stick up for yourself.  Also talking to your bully or hater is important, something may be happening at home. Instead of getting mad, it is really important to confront them first. When people are hateful or mean, it sucks. I just think to myself…one person won’t ruin my life.

KG: You do a lot for many charities, which is your favorite? Tell us about the charity you’re starting?

HS: My favorite charities Habit it Humanity and HAT a service organization that serves the people of Skid Row. We passed out clothes, hygiene products and sleeping bags and had pizza delivered.

I  also am hoping to start my own charity, ‘A Ton of Tomorrow’s’  to stop gossiping and to teach young people how to communicate. We find it difficult [nowadays] to communicate. We don’t converse; we put our heads in our phones.

KG: What are your must have purse items?

HS: Phone, can’t live without it. Chapstick. Gloss. I don’t wear it but have it for emergencies. Money and gift cards(I have tons of them).

KG: Are you on IG, what’s your favorite hashtag?

HS: I’m on instagram @hailey_sole; Twitter @RealHaileySole and Facebook Hailey Sole. My favorite hashtag is #growingupwith they are usually funny.

Published on September 2, 2015


Seemingly overnight New Orleans’s native, Dana Gourrier  has risen to stardom with roles in “The Butler”, “Django Unchained” as well as her role as Chantal on American Horror Story.  Yet, Dana quips, “I don’t feel like it went fast, it was not an overnight success. I consider myself a blue-collar actor.” As much as Ms. Gourrier has become visible to us in movies and television she still remains humble, soulful and appreciative of her journey to Hollywood.

She began acting at the age of 12 and through the course of her career has earned 2 degrees in acting. Dana reminiscences about the moment she knew she’d be an actress, I feel like I was born with that desire. It was ingrained into my DNA. It 110% happened being in theater. Feeling like I fit in somewhere, that’s where I felt most at home.” Her second moment of career clarity came shortly after she had finished grad school.  She explains, “I had moved back to New Orleans and had a office job for about 6 to 8 months. Then one day I decided that I was an actor and that I was never going back.”


That has proven to be an excellent decision as she has had the opportunity to work with Oprah Winfrey, Lee Daniels and Quentin Tarantino. Coming early 2016, Dana will be in two films, ‘Kidnap’ and ‘Same Kind of Different as Me’. In ‘Same Kind of Different as Me’ she plays Willow who she describes as, “ A really gentle spirit who assists her writer friend through some writers block and they begin to develop a relationship.”  In ‘Kidnap’, Dana plays a deputy sheriff who first interacts with a mother played by Halle Berry whose son was just kidnapped.Dana had this to say about working with Halle Berry,

”She’s phenomenal, a wonderful spirit, we talked…I felt a bond and a connection.”


dg2Dana doesn’t have plans to be just a supporting cast member, “I want to feel the responsibility of carrying a show or a movie. I feel ready for it.”  As a lead character she would love to play a love interest.

“I want to be love interest. I am a curvy girl, there are not a lot stories about women who look like me,” says Dana.

She’s spot on and curvy girls are still marginalized in Hollywood as being unable to be a true love interest to a man. I am excited for the day a movie features a plus-sized woman as the protagonist.  Ms. Gourrier is truly a woman to keep an eye out for in Hollywood. Her spirit speaks to me as woman who will bring about change and new story  lines within Hollywood.

Published on September 3,2015