Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Tales of Trial and Terror: Dark and Dramatic Make up-- Take 1

People who know me, know I'll try anything once--I love trying new things. Even if that means I make a wreck of whatever I am learning. My quest in the pursuit of my idea of perfect aesthetic and material treasures are not without consequence, but it is through these terrors and miraculous discoveries about what works and what doesn't, that I find I learn the most important rule in life: learning the meaning of 'humble'. These are my humble beginnings...

As I've mentioned countless times in the previous posts, I am pretty new to make up-- my recent haul was probably the only time I've ever spent so much on cosmetic items in one trip.
So I've been timid with how I do it up until today; pining over picture after picture of beautifully and creatively done make up as seen by the likes of Madam Noire's blog or Lady Bathezda's blog, to name a couple. I finally decided I'd try my hand at it.

I wanted a dark and dramatic look, but I had no idea where to start. Down to the basics it was... so I figured, who's more dark and dramatic than the ever iconic Siouxsie Sioux?

The inspiration: Source

 I realize now in retrospect that I could, and still can, be easily eating my words because it's not a look where a beginner should begin, so I should emphasize right now that the resulting look is loosely based off of Siouxie Sioux's illustrious looks.


I normally have my brows on the thicker side, but today I took my tweezers and started plucking. The brand of tweezers in case you're wondering are Sally Hansen, and I don't recommend them.
Since I'm not new to plucking my brows, I didn't find it all that difficult to know my brow limit and the shape I desired. When I started plucking my brows back in high school I used a brow brush to brush my brows upward, take a pencil liner and mark out the shape I wanted and plucked out whatever was below the line. After a while you just know. I really underestimated how a change of brow intensity changes your face dramatically, and gives the illusion of a cleaner palette-- something I think that many of us newbies really overlook, as well.

It's amazing what a little investment of your time can yield; granted if I invested money, perhaps the results would've been truer. I was working with a dollarstore shadow palette (no joke) and a paint brush to apply all of this.

The first 'wash' I did I chose a faint lilac, which with my skintone turned into a translucent silver. The second color was a darker shade of purple that was showing up on my skin as a brandy color. The final touch was a black that turned into a pale charcoal. Lip color is wet and wild red.

As I write this, I realized I forgot the dramatic blush. Maybe next time...
It's not a look I'll be quickly adopting for my everyday, or even my evening look, and not for any other reason than I am too new to make up so I haven't found my niche-- and I love the experience!

Do you dare to do dark and dramatic yourself?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Fashioning My Cyber Microcosm: Of Life And Buys

I was debating whether this would've been better suited for I Heart Good Buys, but this is mostly just a review of how these products are working thus far... and some randomness.

I know that these past posts haven't exactly fit the bill of goth, in fact they're very regular sort of posts-- this one isn't much different, hehe. I'm not that gothicly creative when it comes to my face, and I know that there are many out there like me who have a difficult time trying to wriggle our way into that aspect of our image, and it's just so damn hard trying to figure out where to begin adorning with make up and such, despite the myriad of make up blogs in the blogosphere. 

Personally, I love reading/watching reviews-- I know I probably don't come off as financially conscientious, but I would rather spend good money on a product I felt had a large chance of success, then to keep wasting money on micro purchases that in the end don't work at all; as my husband puts it, you spend $1 a hundred times that's $100. 

Enough jibber jabber!

There are some products that didn't make it into my previous post of buys because they require a little more time to consider a proper result. These are my new skincare products:

On the left we have the Fresh Farmacy cleanser bar courtesy of LUSH Cosmetics. On the right Hydrating Light Moisturizer brought to you by Simple Skincare.

To recap, 'good' and 'moisturizer' is a mythical combination that for a while now has become the perfect enemy and never fails to foil my skin happiness time and time again. Even in my first face routine post, I was not very happy with that moisturizer. Knock on wood, but I think I might've found it.

Maybe it's luck, a fluke... whatever, but in the full week I've been using this (bought this before the beauty haul) I didn't have any complaints. No news is good news, right? It doesn't leave my face glazed looking or feeling, and is able to properly moisturize despite me using tea tree oil.

One thing that personally doesn't affect me, but may with someone else is that it contains mineral oil. I hear that this has the possibility of making breakouts worse or cause reddening, in some people.
But other than that it's uncomplicated; no perfumes, no colorization... zip! It's just what it is-- simple.

Now, I had been previously raving about Lush's Angels on Bareskin cleanser. It smells great, it works well... I've been using it for about a year. The smell alone was what prompted me to try it and eventually keep buying it. Unfortunately, that love has finally become too little to ignore the increasingly annoying part about this cleanser: the application and wash off. It's super crumbly, and at first I didn't mind it... until I've been picking pieces of it from my hair, and many times finding the pieces in my mouth; probably snuck in from the corners... I resorted to just cleansing while I shower, so I can just wash it all off in one go. But this wasn't entirely viable since there are mornings where I cleanse to start off my day, but don't need a shower because I had one the night before. On a note, I had previously tested/used fresh farmacy, and it works just as well as A.B.S. ... except that it doesn't have a pleasant aroma.

I figured that since it was a bar and not a roll of mush you buy, it'll be much more user friendly. I just didn't like the smell-- it's not that it's gross, but it just doesn't smell at all like something you'd put on your face; the active ingredient is calamine, afterall. As you can see, the consistency is a lot more conducive to cleansing.
My gripe about this, other than the smell, is that LUSH does not make containers for their cut bars. If enough water hits the bar, you'll probably be losing precious pricey product, not to mention dust and bacteria getting on the exposed bar. I used a food container to alleviate this; one that is deep enough to fit the bar, while being small enough to put on my bathroom shelves and in my toiletry bags.

This next review is fun... and stupefying. I really wanted to see how my 99 cent Wet And Wild lipstick measured up to my $30 Lise Watier lipstick. Both bright red. I put my husband up to the Lipstick challenge, and asked him which of these swatches is which!
Normal application

Thumb smudged.

After a 2 hour power nap... that mostly ended up on my face...

Can you tell the difference?

And now... some obligatory kitty photos of my husband's beautiful fur demon. (bribed with demon treats... my arms and ankles)

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Spooky Basket: My Weekend Beauty Haul

This weekend I spent the last 3 days down in Phoenix to help a friend move, and to just generally get out.

My plan was to hit up the fetish night at the Rogue Bar in Scottsdale on Friday, but plans changed and we spent the evening out dinning at P.F. Chang's and late night of bowling where I made a personal high score of 120 while sporting a hobble skirt, haha!

Who says you can't bowl in a tight skirt?

Anyway, the day before that I made it a priority to buy some of the products I've been wanting to make a switch to or try out, and here is the bulk of that illustrious haul (I'll be reviewing the Fructis along with the items that aren't shown, at a later time):

 I made an expensive and small purchase at Sephora; the benefit products and foundation brush. The rest was drugstore bought.
The High Beam complexion enhancer is just a repurchase-- I use it quite often as it is profoundly useful and awesome.

I've been wanting to make a switch from sponges to a brush, since I had it told that the brush distributes the foundation cremes evenly and is less wasteful of it than the sponge. I really wanted to invest in a good brush, and I hope that I ended up making a decent choice; I went with a Sephora foundation brush, and it was rather pricey but not as pricey as the other ones. It had average ratings, but from what I read of the complaints were that it didn't handle thick coverage very well.
I do not like heavy applications of foundations because I tend to have very mild/weak complexion inconsistencies... so light application sounded like more of a positive to me than a negative.

Along with my foundation brush, I really wanted a face primer; while at Sephora I was able to try Urban Decay's-- one that received many raves from all forums where I frequent.
 Sadly, I was extremely unhappy with test. It was far too thick for me, and I could not imagine having that on my face all day. I was given benefits face primer POREfessional to try, and I instantly fell in love with how it felt! So smooth, creamy and light.

It has a very distinct perfumed scent, and color. That could possibly be a negative for someone.
 I was afraid that the color might conflict with the color of my original foundation, as it is medium-- but it blended super easy.

It isn't that much more expensive than Urban Decay's face primer; I think it was only $2 more at $28 for a 0.75 oz bottle. It might even be the same price-- I forget. I didn't want to spend that money on just the primer not knowing if it'll work out for me in the long run, so I bought the How To Look The Best At Everything medium foundation kit, which is a little sampler of their foundation products for the same price.

I love the idea of this. I wish more companies would do this. A neat little thing that I failed to photograph, is that behind the fold out tips and tricks of this box, is that the box also has a mirror-- a large one!
Benefit also has different kits, for lips and eyes. Real cute kits that let you try out their products without spending all that money on the single products. I've haven't been privy to trying their foundation products in the past, and now that I was given that chance it's hard to imagine going to the same 'ol stuff I used before.

The products I bought at the drugstore are these:

Wet & Wild 99 cent red lipstick
Maybelline Great Lash in Blackest Black
Almay Intense i-color liquid liner in Black Pearl.

To be honest, I didn't expect a whole lot from the 99 cent lip color; but I've been hearing word also that Wet & Wild aren't what they used to be in the past. Wet & Wild was a brand I used to buy as a child, like many other skeptics out there. I was happily surprised by the vibrancy of the color I chose to buy-- and this was their cheapest lip color line; not the $3 one everyone has been reviewing. It's hard to tell if it's just my lips that are dry or it is the lipstick... the only time (today) I tried it my lips were already very crumbly and awkwardly dry even with chapstick.

I've been on the prowl for a replacement liquid liner that was on par with Annabelle for a little bit now. I really wanted Almay to be it, because the bottle and brush are identical to that of Annabelle-- however Black Pearl has far too much silver in it for me to love it. It's nice and all, but I won't be buying this color again, and if it wasn't always sold out where I went, perhaps their plain black might be what I am looking for.  I went and tried Rimmel's liquid liner, too, but the brush turned me off almost immediately. I am just using it till it runs out along with this Almay liner.

For a while I've been such a fan of Sexy Curves by Rimmel, but nearly everyone I have spoken to has told me that Great Lashes by Maybelline is the best product they have ever tried.  I really wanted to love this product, also, but felt that it was just below Sexy Curves. Great price comparison, though. I'll probably be buying it over Sexy Curves for that reason, albeit sub par results.

I wore these products minus the lipstick when I went out, even using the tips and tricks fold out. I was very happy with the results by the end of the evening-- nothing had smudged melted or faded. I didn't take pictures of that night or even the weekend, but for blog sake I took pictures doing the whole thing all over again, and including the lipstick.

Added good buy!

At a store called Alco in my town they started stocking some Halloween stuff. Most of it was pretty tacky, and generally cheap and awful... but then I saw these... they came in green, purple, orange and black!
They had other styles of refillable cups with just images; which I hope to buy before too long. But these 3D skull cups are too awesome for words! It's BPA free, but unfortunately not dishwasher or microwave safe.

I might have to buy another one to make it part of my Halloween giveaway
Just suggest which color you'd like to see the one being given should be, and depending on how many responses I get will determine if it will become so.  *wink wink*

Monday, September 10, 2012

Skeleton Closet: Corp Goth Look

The weather is cooling off, and darklings alike are able to bust out and wear the truly staple pieces we've all come to feel are crucial parts of our gothic look...
On this beautiful and cool day, I shall introduce a new part of my gothic fashion files: The Skeleton Closet. Where I get to display my clothing without the bothers of hot weather in mind.

A couple of days ago (a little late, I know, but luckily I had taken the photos with this post in mind), my hubby and I were asked by a friend of his to volunteer to drink for the new police to put their intuitions as well as knowledge to the test. Each of us had to drink to the legal limit and then lie about how much we had. It only took me one and a half drinks to reach that limit; size and height, haha! Good thing I'm not much of a drinker even on a social level, as I'm not wholly social either heh.

I decided I wouldn't go all out on the goth because I would be surrounded by conservative townsfolk and police. My look consisted of all thrift and store bought articles. The sandals really don't go, but I needed something stable to walk with; the choice of foot wear really bugs me, but I had no choice in this regard... otherwise I would've worn my new shoes or similar. This look will easily translate in the office I feel-- I just needed to add stockings and some flats to complete the corp goth look.

Top: Suzy Shier
Vest: Sirens
Skirt: thrifted
Necklace: flea market

Friday, September 7, 2012

Spooky Basket: Thrifted Retro-nista

For many of us, shopping thrift is a complete addiction. The heady smell of thrift shops entices the thrill of the hunt, and the ecstasy that consumes us when we find those really great pieces at dollars and cents is exhilarating to say the least...

Ah thrifting... an inexpensive, but fun way to spend the day shopping.

A couple of days ago I spent the day with my neighbor for dollar tacos and then following up with thrift stores. In my town, I didn't expect there to be a whole lot going on in the way of clothing in the thrift stores-- I have found several really great books that are now happily restored and sit in their places on my shelves.

Boy was I glad to be wrong.

That day I picked up some truly great pieces for a whooping total of $9.15. The highlight of my small but lucrative purchase equals the sum of $3.75!

The Polka Dot Dress

At a whopping $3.00, this little slice of retro awesome could not be overlooked-- the minute I walked into the shop it was staring me down from a wall display. I had to have it-- it gives me a huge reason to wear beyond my monochromatic wardrobe habits.
The label is from "Rare Editions"... a quick google yielded the website:
It's apparently made for little girls, but it fit like a glove-- so I guess that means I have the figure of a young girl-- I guess having little breasts can be somewhat of a good thing *rimshot*

Anyway, it is flocked polka dot organza, and the trims and bow are also velvet. A cute studded buckle sits in the center, and none of the gems are missing. It is in such immaculate condition; I just adore it.

The Shoes

Probably the best, and most inexpensive of this haul are the shoes.

I have been coveting a pair like these for what feels like years... but in fact may have only been a couple of months, hehe. The brand is New Port News, and I was completely shocked at the pristine condition, but mostly for the fact that these beauties came in relatively my size. The company's sizes must run small, because they fit superb for a 6 1/2 when I normally wear a 5 to 6 narrow.

You ready to know how much these were?! ...

.75 cents!


I have one other piece I was proud to haul in but not showing because when I bought it I had a plan to reconstruct it; that'll have to wait till a Creepy Craft Crusade!

P.S. the necklace is self-made, of course, not that it's really all that impressive! Just strung beads =P

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