Monday, November 18, 2013

Style Evolution, Inspiration, and Mostly Floundering

Hi again everyone! I really really did have some post ideas and I might still get around to some of them, but many of them were Halloween oriented and since life and bankruptcy took over my October, I simply didn't get to them. We shall see what I come up with in the future, and what I actually get the time to write since I am THANKFULLY back to work. But anyways, for now I thought I'd share with you some of my outfit struggles and inspirations. Lately I've been reevaluating my wardrobe and I've realized that while I have a knack for thrifting gothy things (whenever I wear certain pieces, I always have at least three people who refuse to believe I didn't order the outfit custom from a gothy provider store) I don't exactly have a gothy direction. I see things and my mental checklist says: Is it black? Yup. Then it just takes off from there: Silver metal stuff attached to it? Lace?  "Leather?" Plaid? Short skirt? Long skirt? Fishnet? Corset looking thing? Boots? Shoes? Grungy? Pretty? I buy a plethora of wardrobe pieces and while this might be good if I ever wanted to open my own alternative store, I have come to the conclusion that I'm really good at buying goth things, I just need to work on buying goth things that suit me and my personal style. So! A checklist for thrift adventures in the future:

  1. Thou shalt picture thyself wearing it, and not just how it fits on your body. Sure, if the skirt fits, it probably moves up a few notches on the "I'll buy this" scale, but I really need to work on looking at the skirt and saying "is this me?" not just "is this black?" 
  2. Thou shalt consider the piece at hand and what you can wear it with. Too often I've picked up a glorious new piece of clothing and it sits in the back of my closet since I have no other pieces of clothing that would compliment it. 
  3. Thou shalt DIY more. There is nothing that makes an outfit feel more personal than one you create, or at least tweak, yourself. 
  4. Thou shalt explore thy subculture, and most importantly, thine own personal fashion choices. The Alternative label covers a wide wide wide range of styles. Since I've been feeling a little misplaced in my current clothes, perhaps I need to look at some inspiration to see if I couldn't turn those pieces of clothing into outfits that convey how I really want to express myself. And maybe those outfits don't have to be 100% Uber Goth All The Time. For example: 

Lately I have been possessed of the need to incorporate
 more pants and shorts into my outfits. I literally own one pair of pants although
I've recently made a few old pairs into shorts. I've always considered myself a tomboy, and maybe trading in some skirts for pants will help me feel more in tune with that. 
Something about this image strikes me. Although I'll certainly be leaving the cigarettes out of my day to day style, I really like the idea of long baggy boys shirts over leggings or tights. 
At the same time as I'm wanting to express a more boyish side,
I am also intrigued by delicate feminine pieces like this bustle skirt.
For the longest time I've considered myself half goth half hippie,
leading me to become very interested in the Dark Mori Girl style. 
This image sort of captures how I see Punk and Mori Girl blended in my head 
Dare I venture out of my comfy secure piles of black clothing?
Okay, this is from the Hot Topic website. I really like the cut of the dress.
I'd never really thought to DIY a skirt! But I especially like the
Punk look of a tattered denim skirt over leggings and leg warmers
 paired with Doc Martens. I'm still looking for the perfect pair of Punk Rock
boots and I DID ask for Docs on my Christmas List (don't judge me for having started it already!!!)...we shall see what happens....
It's a little difficult to describe where I see my style going as I seem to be interested in conflicting ideas (like going more boy-ish at the same time as being feminine, and being interested in natural makeup while I still want to improve my dramatic makeup looks). One of the things I really like about the gothic subculture is that there are so many styles to borrow from, but I almost feel like I should try and narrow it down to one or two styles that feel the most like me so that maybe my own style will emerge as opposed to looking like a Lolita one day, and then super Punk the next, and then just showing up to school in skinny jeans and an old T-shirt because I'm too all over the place to decide what I want to wear. What do you guys do when you're itching for a style shift? Any good websites to scope for inspiration? How do you avoid chucking out all your old clothes and spending your entire paycheck at the thrift store? Advice is greatly appreciated. 

Song of the Day: 

I'm in a topsy turvy Alice in Wonderland-ish sort of mood that calls for Tom Petty...

Friday, November 1, 2013

Happy Halloween!

I hope everyone had fun yesterday! Halloween this year was a little different for me, but my friend Maiga and I still managed to have a very good time. The biggest bummer for me was that I didn't have a costume, no money and no time to throw things together resulted in my looking fairly normal on Halloween. I was quite amused by all the compliments I got on my "costume" though, apparently my everyday ensemble didn't look too out of place amongst the ghouls and goblins. I was also very happy when my friend Raven and I were walking to class together and someone mistook her for my mother, upon which she decided to adopt me as her "honorary goth child." :) Hopefully I'll be employed again within the next few weeks so I can take advantage of the after Halloween clearance sales!
The holiday wasn't entirely without its opportunity for me indulge my love of costuming however! I had the pleasure of designing my friend's zombie outfit. This year was her first being something scary as opposed to something cute, and I was quite satisfied when she jumped at her own reflection in the mirror after I was done putting on her makeup (which really wasn't all that extreme, but when you've spent the last couple of years dressed as a candy corn witch or a butterfly, I suppose seeing yourself looking rather dead is a bit of a shock!)
Photo: Happy Halloween! Stop by Maiga Macke's house and we MIGHT not eat you...
Aren't we delightful? 
Better costume shot. :)
My little sister made her own ears, tail, and paws!
She also did her makeup herself and thrifted the dress to which she added fur.
Isn't she talented? <3
After a few hours of handing out candy to the Trick-or-Treaters, Maiga and I baked some Halloween cookies and watched Mama which I found to be the perfect blend of scary and cheesy. 

Looking forward to next year! 
Song of the Day: 
Uh...this music video...? But...this song!! 

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Cupcake Hair and General Life Update

What's going on in my life? Well, I'm FREEZING at the moment. But that's better than melting under the Great Fiery Orb. In other news, some of you may have noticed (I'm sure you rabidly check this page every day waiting for a scrap of an update) I haven't been posting very much at all! There is a long and short explanation for this...

Short Explanation!
I have been uninspired and busy.

Long Explanation! 
I have been uninspired about blogging and feeling a little distanced from goth in general. I was really excited to go to college because it had a reputation of having a lot of goths lurking about but thus far I've been sadly disappointed. Other than a totally old school goth lady I've befriended in my drawing class who calls herself Raven, the only other goths I've met are a sketchy library help student who is rather greasy and worships at the alter of "Black Metal" but is somehow unable to apply a band name to this genre...(although we did have a nice talk about Emilie Autumn) and another artist in my watercolor class who likes to fill me in about every detail of her relationship including moments...and shows quite the interest in reminding me that she is "goth, very goth!" These people are nice enough I suppose (trying to save my Karma here) but they certainly aren't the creatures of the night I was hoping to meet (in my mind there is at least one Victorian chap with a cane who likes to read English literature in graveyards and a few punk-tastic-chicks with mohawks to go clubbing with). Growing up in a small town where I was pretty much the ONLY goth, well, there were a few alternative kids in high school but none of them with any interest in the basic roots of the subculture, it's a little disheartening to always be the lone bat.
Random awesome picture!
Check out this girl's deviantart!
Also, people at my school, and on the way there, seem to have strange expectations of me. I've had several instances where overweight older men on the public transport ask for my number after complimenting my "tights" all the while staring at my thighs or cleavage, and a few times where I've been sitting quietly reading and people come up to me, sit down and go "So. I've noticed you're GOTH." Why yes, how keen of you. Would you like to start a conversation? No? You'd rather just sit there staring at me as though I'm meant to transform into a black cat with a poof of purple glitter? So there's that.

And I also recently lost my job because the place I was working shut down. Which is a MAJOR bummer because its October now and I have no money for Halloween goodies! :( I'd also come to like my previous job quite a lot (you can read about my initial concerns in this post) and I'm missing the friends I made there and the surprising amount of appearance tolerance I'd gotten used to. They let me wear my piercing, as much makeup as I wanted, and show my undercut, my manager even told me he expected my hair to be "a different color every week!" and all I had to do was smile at the customers and weigh their frozen yogurt. So most of my spare time these days has been taken up by job applications. But wanna see something that made me laugh until my little rib-cage almost cracked? This question:
This is a screen shot from my phone as I was filling out apps online.
This is an ACTUAL question!! :D
In addition to all that tomfoolery, I've been experiencing some conflict about makeup. I've come to integrate makeup, A LOT of makeup, into my daily definition of goth. It really adds to outfits and amps up the ookie-spookieness factor. I sometimes miss my natural face, but I also don't feel comfortable wearing no makeup, months of scrubbing off blackest black eyeliner have given me some pretty severe dark circles and with my undercut I feel very boy-ish if I'm not wearing at least a little eyeliner. On the one hand, I really like my dramatic makeup. Creating different looks is fun and interesting. But sometimes I feel like I'm doing it because it's what people expect of me, not what I really want.

All of these things combined have lead me to just feel a little...lonely. Which is why I've realized, I need to start blogging again! I love all you guys, seriously you should see me when I get a comment from any of my followers, I practically burst with glee. And if I can't find any gothy types in my hometown well, here everyone is online posting pictures of their drool-worthy outfits and macabre topics of interest. Thanks for having the confidence to be yourselves! You give this dark hearted girl some smiles (with vampire fangs of course). I really enjoy cliches. :D
THIS needs to happen in my life.
Anywho! Enough about me, what about my hair? (Yes, it truly is a separate entity, it has a MIND of its OWN!) Perhaps you read my last post about the new products I was trying and the color results I was aiming for? If not, I'll wait. I'm sure I have some knitting around here to occupy my time...
Okay, up to speed now? Well. The results of last night's several rounds of bleaching and then dye application left me very disappointed. After letting the dye sit for FOUR HOURS, I washed my hair to find I was blonde with slightly pinkish streaks everywhere and two spots of rather brighter pink on my undercut. Not. What. I. Wanted. Altogether, it looked almost orange, and it was a really muddy shade, probably because some of my hair wasn't entirely light enough for a pastel color to go over. And what was with the dye not taking on the short super bleached side of my head? It was a mild disaster, so I reapplied bleach to attempt to go back to blonde. The pink didn't bleach out but it did get lighter, much closer to the shade I intended. While it was wet it was still looking rather stupid, but this morning I saw the dried results and was much happier:
It still has a lot of blonde showing through on the bottom parts of my hair. I'm not sure if this is because the dye (I used Ion Color, their shade "Rose") just didn't take for some reason or because it was my first time dying my hair all by my lonesome (I usually employ the help of my wonderful mother who has bleached and colored my hair so many times by now I should really start tipping her) and I probably didn't apply it as evenly as I could have. For now I'm just combing all my hair over my silly half dyed undercut and working with it. Although I did purchase some Splat hairdye today (I found out they never test on animals or use animal products in their colors!!!) to try using with this tutorial, we'll see how it goes! Hopefully the end result will be something like this:
In addition to just liking pastel pink, my interest in pastel goth is growing, I like the cutesyness of it.
Although from what I've read its not actually "goth" its purely fashion?
So! I know I've said it before but I'm going to try and keep up with the regular posts again. Inspiration has once again struck and I've got some more ideas for posts. October tends to do that to me. :) Thanks for checking back! I hope you're all doing well!
Song of the Day: 

Monday, October 7, 2013

Hair Misadventures: We're Getting Better At This?

Hi guys! In my never ending quest for fabulous hair, I have another product to share with you.  After my brief stint with black hair, I decided to go for cotton candy pink! This was a mighty feat as the light pink needed a pretty light base to go over. But before we get into that, a review of the black dye I finally found that didn't turn my hair green!
Wella Hair Colour
The above brand receives four out of five bats from me. On the plus side, it is reasonably priced and since you mix it with toner, you get a rather lot of dye for your money. As someone who has LONG THICK hair and usually dyes her whole head, I know it can be expensive to buy enough dye so the head is evenly covered without breaking the bank. I believe I bought two tubes of dye for twelve dollars total, and this mixed with the toner (which was four dollars for a fairly large bottle) gave me enough to coat all my hair with a massive amount left over (around two and a half cups). So for $16 I was able to dye my whole head! This compared with a four ounce pot of Manic Panic for $13.95 plus shipping was certainly a satisfying deal. I was also happy to find that their color "Noir" is a real and true black with a purple base as opposed to a blue one, so it won't dye very light hair green. (If you're interested, red + blue = purple, so we get the red to counteract the "yellow" of blonde hair, this keeps the dye from going green, and the blue to make our eye see a darker hue so in a burst of magic black sparkles, we get a black dye!)
I love her undercut!
I've been thinking about getting mine a little more styled.
Wella does have a few problems though, the first being that it is a little difficult to find. It is considered a Professional Grade Dye so it can only be found in specialty beauty stores such as Sally's Beauty Supply or Ulta Beauty. (These are what we have in Colorado, sorry I'm not sure they exist elsewhere!) Wella also leaves the hair feeling a little dry. After washing and conditioning my hair, I went to brush it and the hair was rather...scratchy. This feeling goes away after a few washes. Wella is also not entierly cruelty free from what I could find, they don't test on animals, but the company that owns them does. Overall, it lasted me through around 30 washes, some with plain hot shower water, and was still fairly black before I got sick of it. It was actually fading a bit, but was mostly black with nice chestnut undertones so it didn't do any of that fading to green or grey business. There we have it!
A few notes on dying your hair black in general:
From my personal experience it looks rather fake in a way that bright colors (which are obviously fake) don't seem to. While a dark color right next to your face will certainly make you look gloriously vampire-like, goths wear a lot of black. My long hair tended to fade into my outfits rather than Wednesday-Addams-ify me. In short, I thought it was rather boring. Which is the reason for the switch. And in order go pastel, I had to get the black out of my hair!
A few weeks prior to my D-Day (dye-day? See what I did there?) I started washing my hair in hot water again (which we all know is a big no-no if we want to KEEP the color yes?) and it helped to fade it a little. But I still needed a strong bleach! I also wanted something I could mix up in smaller batches because my undercut requires a tiny bit of bleach as it grows out and I have to re-shave and re-dye it. So, as per the recommendation of the lovely KillNatalie I went over to my trusty Sally's again and purchased:
Prism Lites comes in Blue and Violet. The Blue is a stronger lightener, so that's the one I went for. It is powder that is tinted so you can see where you put it on, and you mix it with a toner, choose from 20-40 depending on the strength of the lift desired (gee, I should sell this stuff shouldn't I? :D). I already had some 20 volume but it was a little diminished from the last round of dyeing, so I also picked up some 30 volume. Overall, 4.5 bats! A container of Prism Lites is a little expensive, I think the tub was $20, plus the toner made for $24 dollars for my hair project. But its enough for several entire head jobs, and its easy to store and measure out (it comes with a nifty little scoop!). Its also only available through specialty beauty shops. But its well worth it! Prism Lites with 20 volume toner lightened my blackest black hair to light brown in 40 minutes, and another round with the 30 volume toner brought everything up to a lemon yellow with some streaks of auburn (these were from when my friend put highlights of pure pigment colors in my hair). 
Can we be friends please? :)
Washing your hair after bleaching with Prism Lites leaves it feeling surprisingly like you just got a deep conditioning treatment, but that silky almost slimy feel you're experiencing is probably the basic compounds doing their work (if you spill a base on your skin it'll feel slimy, this is because your skin cells are being dissolved. :P) After drying, my hair was a little straw-like, but not too terrible, and most of the damage probably came from the fact that my current length of hair has been through four color changes and three bleaching rounds in the past year. I'm abusive, I know...Anyway, by far the BEST feature of Prism Lites is that IT DOESN'T DO THAT ITCHY BURNING HORRIBLE THING that box bleaches like Manic Panic and Splat do. The only think I noticed was my head getting a little hot under the 30 volume toner, but it wasn't nearly as annoying as other bleaches I've tried and I had it right down to the scalp and along the hairline. If I ever feel like entertaining you I'll post a video of me trying not to rip my head off while itchy bleach sits...its embarrassing. :)

I'm currently typing this with my hair all pulled up and sitting under a shower cap while I let my pink dye sit for a few hours so I'll post some pictures once I know how it turned out! I guess while it's setting I'll listen to the Song of the Day: 

Monday, September 23, 2013

Tiny Top Hat DIY

Hello out there! Yes, I'm still alive. :) With Halloween coming up there are lots of wonderful goodies out in the craft stores, and many of them have discounts on fall decor and accessories. It's the time of year every goth loves, when we can walk up and down the street waving at all the skeletons and jack-o-lanterns that are there to greet us at every doorway. With all this spooky wonderfulness out and about, its the perfect time for crafts! So I thought I'd share some of my decoration ideas for tiny top hats.

You Will Need

  • 1 miniature top hat. These can be found in the doll making isle of most craft stores. 
  • 2 "pterodactyl clips" I don't know their proper name, see pictures below if you have no clue what I'm talking about. :P
  • Either Hot Glue or Tacky Glue 
  • Scissors
  • Trinkets to decorate your hat with (feathers, safety pins, ribbon, beads, scraps of fabric, buttons, fabric/puff paint, the possibilities are endless!) 

To begin your top hat, first establish a general theme. A hat can be decorated to suit any gothic style! Do you want to strive for elegance with fluffy feathers and delicate beaded trim? Or perhaps you'd like a grungier top hat with Tim Burton stripes and safety pins stuck through the brim. Look at your supplies, and decide what you want your hat to say about you.

When looking at a top hat to decorate, I usually see three main areas of emphasis: the top, the brim, and That is, the bit between the brim and the top! The body of the hat is the best place for decoration because it is the most easily seen when the hat is worn. Unless someone is looking down at you, they probably won't see the top of the hat when it is perched atop your fabulous gothy head, the same generally goes for the brim (although the brim is a good place to hang dangly little charms off of). So when decorating your hat, focus your ideas on the body. Also remember that a top hat is a 3-D object, so it will be viewed from all sides when worn. Don't put all your wonderful decorations in the front and leave the back bare!

Layers are the key to making a crafty object (those top hats are very conniving) look like it was really hard to make! So consider how you want things to overlap and maybe sketch it out before you glue if you're really ambitious (or have more patience than I do).

First, I glued a decorative ribbon all the way around my hat as a "hat band"
A hat band is a good start for a top hat design because it goes all the way
around, and is easy to build layers on top of.
 Remember not to use Elmer's glue for this project because it will
probably just soak through the fabric of the hat without attaching anything.
Elmer's glue also creates wrinkles in ribbon because it's so liqidy. 
My little piece of ribbon wasn't long enough to go all the way around,
but I was going to put a large decoration for a focal point anyway,
so I could easily cover up the bare patch. 
Layers! This white ribbon looks pretty and served the
dual purpose of finishing the gold ribbon's edge. :) Note that where the edges
of the ribbon hang off the hat is directly across from the bare patch
where my fancy decorations are going to go. Now I have a front
and a back of my circular hat! 
Cross the ribbon in back...
And add a pretty bead to finish off the ribbon
For the perfect ribbon edge, fold the end of your ribbon and cut diagonally from the corner
I have cat hair on my glove...
Flipping the hat back to the front, I add even more layers!
Just know...feathers look awesome, especially on hats. But they are a PAIN to glue because the little wisps get stuck in the glue and then they turn into a little gluey feather clot which is impossible to fluff back up. I would recommend using hot glue to apply feathers, or at least make sure your hands are really clean when you go to glue feathers.
Finishing touch on the front, a lovely skeleton cameo!

Then for a little extra sparkle and so the sides of the hat would
have a bit of detail, I added some sequins along the white ribbon.
Don't forget to add the clips so your hat is wearable! I call them Pterodactyl clips because, come on, that's what they look like! You can get these at craft stores, or if you don't want to spend the extra money, you could just bobby pin your hat on your head.
Glue the flat side of these clips on the bottom of your
hat so you can easily pin it in your hair.
And there you have it! I think I'll add some more ribbon hanging down the back of mine. 

Song of the Day:
I love cello music...

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Back to School In Gothland

My but its been a while! I'm sorry to have neglected my blogging recently, life, as it has a habit of doing, has been taking over. I've been busy spending far too much money (I am now the proud owner of Emilie Autumn's The Asylum For Wayward Victorian Girls) re-dying my hair, working, and going to school. As such, I thought it might be nice to write up a short compilation of back to school "essentials" for us in the black clad masses.

  1. Coffee or tea. We're creatures of the night! Getting up early to catch the bus, drive to school, and still have time to perfect winged eyeliner requires a burst of caffeine. I like to stock up on my tea supply as the school days loom closer to give myself a bit of variety in the morning. 
  2. Concealer. Speaking of getting up early, does anyone else have terrible problems with dark circles? While they may lend a touch of reality to zombie inspired makeup looks, many goths shoot for the vampire/porcelain doll look and as the hours of required alertness begin to shift earlier, some of us are going to have to cover up those hours spent restlessly night prowling. 
  3. A shower cap. Don't look at me like that, they're very useful (if not very stylish)! Dyed hair has to be washed in cool water to maintain its color, and everyone wants their locks looking brilliant and radiant for that first day of school. This doesn't mean you have to shower in ice water though! I take my usual relaxing hot shower in the mornings with my hair safely hidden away under a shower cap so the color doesn't fade. Then when I'm done, I just stick my head under the facet to wash my hair in cool water.
  4. A travel size makeup bag. School buildings contain lots of people, involve lots of walking, and aren't always nicely air conditioned. These humid environments can wreak havoc on a carefully crafted goth face, so I'd suggest carrying your basic eyeliner, lipstick, powder, and some blotting sheets to maintain your look throughout the day. 
  5. A pair of flats. Throw these little shoes in your locker for days when you can't rock the four inch kitten heels for six hours, or when the weather man promised rain and you find yourself engulfed in knee-high-not-very-breathable-platform-boots in 90 degree weather. You'll be comfier and less cranky if you've got a backup pair!
  6. Saftey pins! The ultimate DIY fallback, you can throw these on the collar of your jacket, along the seams in jackets and pants, or up the strap of your backpack to add a little gothy flair to any outfit. DIY goes a long way for school supplies too! Although I admittedly spent $2.50 on Monster High notebooks for last year, just look at the masterpiece I created out of a black binder I snagged for a dollar:
    Very proud of my creation. :)
  7. Music! You've gotta have some morbid tunes for the funeral march through the school doors, or the morgue-like atmosphere of silent study hall. Stock up your i-pod with your blackest favorites and don't forget to charge it up the night before!
  8. The perfect outfit. I'm a dork, but I always plan my outfit for the first day of school and lay it all out, accessories and all, right by my bed so when I'm stumbling through my early morning haze, I don't have to stumble through the chaos that is my closet as well. Heck, try it all on the night before to make sure you look gorgeous from every angle. If you're confident in your look, you'll be that much better at meeting raised eyebrows with smiles and letting snide comments roll off your shimmering scales.
  9. A good book. Sometimes starting a new year means starting new classes without your very best flock of ravens around to support you during the awkward before-the-teacher-walks-in period. If you're not the biggest social luna moth, a book can be a safe haven and even a conversation starter. My English teacher and I last year discussed the pros and cons of Stephen King and the different takes on vampire legends for a good twenty minutes before class started simply because he walked in to find me engrossed in Salem's Lot.  
  10. Time. This usually isn't a problem for me as I tend to sleep very little the night before a big event (like the first day of school! Jinkies!) and as soon as my alarm goes off I fly out of bed. But remember, some of us like to lounge about in our pajamas completely neglecting the world outside of tumblr relax our goth-ness over the summer, so it's a little more work than you'd think getting ready the first day. Inevitably, your favorite spike choker will go missing, you'll drop your contact down the drain (guilty) and you just won't be able to decide on green or purple eye shadow. Do yourself a favor and get up just a tad bit earlier to make up for first day hullabaloo. 

Well that was fun! I pride myself in my ability to sound like a magazine for teen girls. :) I hope you all have wonderful first days back to school, and that you all post pictures of your outfits for me to admire! On that note, would you enjoy some outfit posts from me? I always feel a tad bit awkward doing those sorts of posts, I feel like I'm going "Ah! Lookit! It's me and mah fancy schtuff!" Let me know while you listen to the
Song of the Day:

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Makeup Tips I Wish I Had Known As A Young Gothling

I started wearing makeup a lot later than most girls and as a result I've had to learn the hard way about a lot of products! I'm still learning about all the multitudes of makeup products beyond your basic eyeliner, eye shadow, lipstick, but here are a few things that I've learned as I've experimented with different looks.
Foundation. (The kind I use is a liquid that comes in a pump bottle). Does not work like concealer. Its uses include evening out skin tone, slightly helping to conceal dark circles and giving makeup a base besides skin to cling to so it is easier to remove, but it will not hide red spots, it will actually highlight patches of dry skin, and it certainly won't cover tattoos. In my case, foundation also clogs pores.

Lipstick. For the sake of all things black and fluffy put chapstick on underneath! Lipstick by itself will quickly dry out, creating unattractive cracking and flakes when speaking, and immensely drying out the lips.

Pencil eyeliners. They melt. All of them. It doesn't matter if its a $3 one from Hot Topic or a $12 one from The Body Shop they will melt off your face and all the hard work you put into your gorgeous look will be gone in two hours. I have experienced the unfortunate state of "melty eyes" with countless different eyeliner brands, with foundation and without. I have never purchased eye primer (its on my back to school list!) so I can't testify to the effects of pencil eyeliner on top of primer. Liquid eyeliner however, will not melt. Even if you draw it on thick and extend it all over your eye area, it will stay there! On that subject:
Liquid eyeliner. It stings. If you wipe it off with a makeup wipe and attempt to reapply it immediately afterwards your skin will sting and your eyes will water. I thought this might have been a reaction I was sadly singled out to suffer, but my little sister has experienced the same thing. My hypothesis is that taking off liquid eyeliner with a makeup wipe at all will make skin sting (although since I've had no desire to repeat my painful experience, I have always taken off liquid eyeliner with baby oil and hot water only).

When applying makeup, don't pull the skin under the eye. I first learned to put on makeup from Youtube videos and I watched a girl stretch her eye until the skin was taught and then apply eyeliner. This gives you a flat surface to draw a line of makeup over, but it will mess up the delicate skin by the eye, creating huge bags under the eye. I'm still trying to break myself of this habit.

Under-eye moisturizer. Pat it on using the ring finger (the most delicate of fingers) don't rub it under the eye. Rubbing the under-eye also enhances bags.
My makeup skills are ever growing, and eventually I will actually know what I'm doing, but for now, if you're a newbie makeup artist, learn from my mistakes! Does anyone have any beauty secrets I could benefit from? Please share while you enjoy today's:
Song of the Day
I picked up a Jesus and Mary Chain CD from a thrift store for 25 cents a couple of years ago, and I just dug it up again. I actually love the whole thing! Gotta love the 80's music videos!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Hair Misadventures

Hair dying. I cannot seem to get the hang of it! Thus far I have had my hair dyed four times. The first time was an attempt at deep scarlet red. I bleached my natural hair (medium brown) using a Splat hair dye kit and then applied their "Luscious Raspberry" color...and ended up pinkish orange.
Ah...that picture was a long time ago. :D
This being the first time I dyed my hair, I had no idea what I was doing and probably didn't let the dye set long enough. Also I didn't know anything about aftercare, so I washed it in hot water and didn't really do much to preserve the color. For the second round I once again attempted scarlet, this time using Manic Panic's "Vampire Red" over unbleached hair. It also turned my hair pink, although I was definitely happier with the color results.
Another old picture. That was when I first started wearing eyeliner...
Next I had my hair professionally dyed for Halloween. This was the only time I actually got my hair to turn red.
Please admire my Halloween costume from last year. :)
Once that faded out, my friend dyed my hair with professional salon products. He put all kinds of colors in it, but mostly a burgundy over the reddish-orange that the above color had become.
These colors gradually faded out, and I hadn't attempted to dye my hair since. Professional colors turned my hair the right red hue, but never the ones I tried myself no matter if I bleached or didn't, no matter how long I let the dye set. This summer I finally had some money to spend and I really missed my crazy colored hair. I was also ready for a style change, so I got the undercut I'd been wanting forever and made plans to turn my hair black and turquoise. Currently my hair resembles a Barbie Doll: 

Today I attempted to dye it black using Manic Panic's "Raven" aaaaaaand...well, this: 
It's GREEN! Luckily I did a strand test, so my whole head doesn't look like this. 
Apparently I should have researched a little more before dumping chemicals in my hair. I found out that black dyes are usually blue based. If you put them over blonde hair (which is basically yellow) they turn green! In my case, the "Raven" dye looked very black as it went on my hair, and when I washed it, it had a green tint. Once it had dried it was looking very forest green, and in natural light, it looked like Leprechauns had thrown up all over my hair. Apparently in order to get a good black, one must either have red hues in her hair or mix red dye in with the black to counteract the blue base and avoid green. This is especially saddening since my hair was a faded reddish-brown after my last dye job, and perhaps if hadn't bleached it (and spent the extra money on bleach kits!) it might have actually turned black. I'm not blaming Manic Panic as I'm sure their colors work wonderfully for some, and its probably more my ignorance and poor dye skills than any fault in their color formulas which causes my attempts at hair dying to go so awry. It might have been nice to have a warning about black hair over blonde though, as their dye package specifically says: "For best results, pre-lighten hair to a light blonde using Manic Panic Flashlightening 30 or 40 volume bleach kit." It also says "May stain blonde or porous hair" which I'm a little confused by...isn't that the point of dying one's hair? 
While I had poor dye results over the blonde
hair achieved through Manic Panic's Flashlightning,
I have good things to say about the bleach itself.
I used 30 volume and it considerably lightened my
hair without significantly damaging it at all.
Apparently I chose the world's hardest colors to dye one's hair: really red, and very black. Red dyes are difficult because the molecules that we see which reflect red light are bigger than those for say, blue. That means that more dye must soak into the pores of the hair to make it appear red, and this is rather difficult to achieve without using pure pigment products such as those available to professional salon artists. Reds also fade quickly because of their molecular compositions. Simply put: the bigger particles don't grip the hair as well. As I found out, black dyes are apparently touchy too. There are some that are blue based and some that are red based. I was under the impression that bleaching my hair would make it easier to dye it very dark colors, but dark color dyes are made up of other color dyes, and if they aren't balanced out by hair's natural hues or offset with added color, they can turn wonky. 
I have yet to try the "Atomic Turquoise" I ordered from Manic Panic on my newly bleached hair. Hopefully bright colors like this will work better than the black. If you're considering dying your hair black, please learn from my mistakes! Also, lend me your advice. Does anyone know how to achieve rich black hair? What colors work well on bleach blonde? 

Song of the Day: 
Um...yeah...come on, that video is adorable!