Bonus Post – My New Hair Cut & More Raves About Goth Rosary

On Monday my friend and hair stylist Holly Hui was nice enough to come to my house to give me a hair cut. I’m still loyal to the middy, but in order to experiment a little more with classic styles I went quite a bit shorter than I’m used to. My long hair looks have a tendency to fall apart a bit when I’m trying any sort of specific shape, even with tons of hairspray.  I’m a tough case when it comes to hair because I like everything, which means I can never make up my mind and once I do the grass is always greener. In this case, it’s too short for me to like it as much as I did when it’s straight, though that’s just my taste and it still looks great, however it is so beautiful when it’s curled. With this length I can accomplish a classic page boy like Dita, but more often than not I’ll make it the big messy luxurious white girl fro that I love. And that’s so easy now, because nothing is weighing it down! These pictures are half so I can document how my hair reacts to different types of curls, and half for YOU to see the same, because I know a lot of vintage-lovers are always looking for more middy pictures, including me.

So the cut. This is not cut to the diagram. I honestly don’t think it’s necessary, even in the actual 40s I’m sure they just understood it and went from there based on the person’s face, head, and preferences. I would venture to say this is about 10 inches long overall (from what I understand it’s Rita Hayworth length, but it’s still longer than any official diagram). The cut is layered horizontally and fairly uniformly, cut blunt, so no feathering/texturing/what have you at all, and is U-shaped at the bottom so the layers frame the face. My hair is very straight and fine, and these pictures involve NO product whatsoever as per my normal routine.

I’ll save you the picture of it straight for now because I look sickly and miserable in it and it’s pretty much the worst picture ever. I’ll take a better one later.

IMG_1201

This is hot rollers, all rolled under. I did this right after the cut. I have to try everything when I get a hair cut because I’m so curious about what it will do. My head looks huge haha. This is lovely.

IMG_1202

Hot rollers loosening up. Still great.

IMG_1205

Before I re-washed, because it felt a bit greasy as though I didn’t do it right the first time. Know what I mean? Actually it still kind of feels like that. But this is awesome, I love this.

IMG_1207

Pillow rollers. Neat, but not totally my taste. I promise I’m not about to cry here lol I’m a weird picture taker. I’ll keep this style in mind for certain adventures in modeling.

IMG_1212

Pillow rollers after falling throughout the day. Totally cute! I tied a ribbon around it here, it’s very Snow White.

IMG_1218I tried a tutorial I found on Classic Retro Glam’s Youtube channel. Normally these tutorials drive me insane because I’ll love it, run to my dressing room to do it, and fail repeatedly. This one I got right away, and it’s beautiful. YES!!

IMG_1224

Another angle. None of these are great because I had to take them myself and I had no idea where the camera was pointing.IMG_1226

The big curly white girl fro of sorts. My hair always looks its best right before I go to bed. And it seems I’ve once again subjected you to pictures of me in my underwear. Sorry.

IMG_1238

Aaaand today, after being set in large dry pin curls overnight to preserve some of yesterday’s curl. The top just needs some fluffing. I have also put clothes back on.

Now how exactly can I get it to look this way on day one?? Tell me please!

Also today, besides my hair looking totally boss, I got another package from Goth Rosary. The owner has been having some medical issues so the site was down for months, but I’m happy to inform you that it’s back up. I don’t know what I would do without this perfume. It’s wonderful. I ordered Samhain (everyone’s favorite. I mean everyone) and Fairy Wings for my mom. She’s very allergic to perfume, but she can stick her nose right in the bottle and it doesn’t bother her, so that’s saying something. Fairy Wings reminds me of a mix of Fantasy and Midnight Fantasy. I can’t smell the cucumber personally, but lots of sweet berries. It’s really delightful, I’m going to order some for myself next time. This time I got myself Gothic Rose. It’s a true deep red rose scent, untainted by alcohol. Mike says it smells like soap though, I guess because a lot of soap is rose-scented. It’s thus a little more commercial than their other offerings, but I like it a lot. This one lasts a very long time too, I can still smell it on myself without even trying. Or maybe I just used too much lol. I also got a sample vial of Black Wings, which is beautiful and very masculine, so I’ll be including some for Mike on my next order. I recommend that if you’re not in the US you go in on your orders with a friend or two; shipping is a bit of a bitch.

Until Monday!

Cheap vs. Pricey – foundation and eyeliner

So you remember how what’s probably been a year and a half now I decided to upgrade my makeup to the fancy stuff? I was not disappointed, and these are purchases I have continued to make again and again. The thing is, most people aren’t at the same place financially all the time. You go through your ups and downs. And after the move into our first house, an expensive waste of a trip to Toronto, and two dogs all in the same month, we’re not doing as well as we were a few months ago.

So when I volunteered to do the hair and makeup at my company’s annual gala this year, I took it as an opportunity to try out some cheaper brands and see how they compare to the good stuff I use on a regular basis. The results I found were actually pretty surprising.

Let’s start with eyeliner. The expensive stuff I’ve been using is Kat von D’s Autograph Liner, and it costs about 28$. The formula has huge color payoff and lasts all day, and I love the brush. It’s a fantastic liner. When I was in Walmart I tried to find the cheapest eyeliner that took the same form, which is a brush you dip into a little pot. What I found was Wet n Wild Mega Liner, for only four bucks. Even in the world of drug store makeup a 4$ eyeliner is pretty damn rare. For sure what you get in the expensive brand is awesome packaging. I am a huge sucker for that, and I actually don’t mind paying a bit more for something that looks awesome. The surprising thing is though, when you consider the actual product itself, they’re really not all that different. I’ve tried the Mega Liner both with and without primer underneath, and the results are almost the same. It lasts perfectly all day with primer, and has some flaking by the end of the day without. Fading is nil. The only real difference I can tell is the brush. The brush doesn’t have such a fine point on it, so it picks up a lot more of the product. This can result in big messy globs if you’re not careful, and it’s a tiny bit trickier to get those precise little points on the wings, if you do it in that style. But as long as you make sure to wipe off the brush and try to keep a steady hand, I find that the difference is so minimal that until I have enough money to spend on cool packaging alone, I’ll be sticking with the Mega Liner. This also reaffirms that if you’re willing to pay for a good primer, it doesn’t really matter as much what you’re putting on top of it. It really does do a lot to level the playing field between the cheap and expensive brands.

I bought a cheap foundation at the same time. I chose Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse for about 14$ because years ago I actually googled “what is the best foundation” and pretty much everybody said this one. Once again, the packaging sucks next to the big robust purple case with all the the animals and cool font on it from Urban Decay’s Surreal Skin cream to powder foundation, which is about 40$. That much goes without saying. One negative of the Urban Decay though is how little you get. To be sure, it lasts longer than you would expect, it really does. It gives you a much better payoff so you don’t need as much. But come on, it’s 40$. That’s not as gross as what you would pay for, say, Clinique, but it’s still pretty gross and it hurts when you pay for it. I expect a little more for my pain. I also find the brush a bit awkward. But it really is a very good product, with good coverage, a light feel, and a look that is more skin than makeup. I like it a lot. The Dream Matte Mousse is a little bit crumbly, and messy if you don’t use a foundation brush. But overall I find that the quality is very similar. It feels nice going on, you don’t use very much if you use a brush, and I feel like the coverage is also good. Again, it looks like skin more than makeup. The real difference between the two, where I find you really have to make a decision, is the color. Surreal Skin is the color of a person. It’s the color of my face, and that’s really important. Dream Matte Mousse is the color of…someone’s idea of a person maybe. It’s close, but I’m not quite that neon. It’s odd, like skin infused with just a hint of orange fake tan, even though I got the second lightest color they have. This problem has been consistent with virtually every drug store foundation I’ve ever tried. So if you are the color of Dream Matte Mousse, I would say that this is a great buy. You won’t notice much of a difference. I’m not, but the difference isn’t actually so bad that I think anyone would notice, as long as I remember to use it everywhere and not leave patches behind. So I do believe I will keep buying this, at least as long as I still have my summer tan and I’m a little bit broke. But drug store makeup brands – can you PLEASE start making your foundation people-colored? I’m not orange and I don’t want to be!

In both the eyeliner and the foundation I tried, the cheap ones were of surprisingly good, and close enough to the expensive brand. If packaging isn’t all that important to you I highly recommend you try these as an alternative to that guilty feeling you get after leaving Sephora, at least if you’re temporarily broke. You know what I’m going to do? I’m going to try to put the cheap stuff inside the packaging of the fancy stuff. Take that. Cleverness wins.

Products I Just Like – Mini Reviews 1

There are a lot of products I like, but not all of them are enough to get a full review. I just don’t have that much to say about them. So here are some mini reviews, all mashed together into a reasonable length post.

Urban Decay All Nighter setting spray. This works. That’s rare. And I like that. It’s awesome not to look like I just woke up in my makeup by the end of my shift. $15 isn’t even all that much to spend on a little bottle that will probably last a reasonable amount of time. Definitely will re-purchase.

Annabelle makeup pencils. There are certain things I just don’t feel it’s necessary to spend a ton of money on at Sephora. Lip and eye pencils are a couple of those things. Annabelle pencils go on smooth, precise, and come in great colors. Lately I especially love their eyebrow pencil in Auburn. I was really surprised how well this matched my hair. I mean it matches pretty much exactly, and no other brand seems to carry anything but brown and light brown. It also has a little brow brush on the cap. It looks great, I love it.

Garnier Skin Renew Anti-Puff Eye Roller. Wow, that’s a mouth full. But I got this years ago, and I’m still loving it. It really does calm down the bags under your eyes, and it feels really nice. It’s part of my daily routine.

Covergirl Outlast. I despise every sad piece of garbage CG makes. Except this. I’ve tried MAC, Makeup Forever, all that stuff, and while I love the deep impact of Makeup Forever matte red, Outlast is an exceptional choice of red for daytime if you don’t like to add a touch of whore to your morning like I do. It really lasts all day (longer than Makeup Forever), even through meals, feels like you’re not wearing anything, and the colors are great. It’s like a lipstick tattoo, it’s crazy. Just make sure you give it plenty of time to dry before putting the balm on. Who told you to put the balm on? Did I tell you to put the balm on? I didn’t tell you to put the balm on!

Garnier Skin Renew The Brusher Gel Cleanser. I think that’s what it’s called, it’s what’s on the bottle. I never thought I would stray from Soap and Glory Scrub Your Nose In It, and I still LOVE that, but what makes this is the rubber brush. At first I was disappointed and thought it wouldn’t be as good as a “real” brush, but now I see that it’s really massaging and is much easier to get clean instead of it being a bacteria trap. From the first time I used this my skin was very noticeably softer and smoother, and I could even tell when Mike tried it out. It also just felt so amazingly clean, this is the reason I now look forward to washing my face. I wish they made a whole body version. I love Garnier anything. It’s like anti-aging for cool younger women. I’m impressed that all their stuff actually does what they say it does. I’d like to think it’s because of Garnier that I’m no longer embarrassed about what I look like without makeup on. In fact for my next thing of foundation I feel comfortable downgrading back to a drug store brand. I’m only using the fancy one I still have on small areas now.

Garnier BB Cream. While we’re on that subject, here’s yet another from Garnier. From the research I’ve done, I think I can safely establish that this is NOT the very best BB cream out there. And I think that would depend on you and your skin needs anyway. But it’s the first one I’ve tried and I like it. The coverage is a definite step up from tinted moisturizer, it has anti-oxidants, and it means I don’t have to worry about putting on sunscreen. It’s a time saver, and it does make my skin look better, more even with a better tone. I don’t know what else it’s contributing to because I’m using a lot of Garnier stuff lately, but my skin has been steadily improving ever since.

‘NRage hair color. I’ve always used Punky Color for my hair dye because Bea told me it lasted the longest, and she’s right. But one beef I’ve always had is that the colors are just so unpredictable. They never look like the label or the swatches. Online searches are pretty useless too. I once used Red Wine expecting to get a nice deep red and my hair turned hot pink. Lucky for me I still loved it. But when you want something specific it’s a bit risky. My drug store also carries ‘NRage, and this is what I use now. The quality, smell, and lasting power is the same if not better than Punky, I can’t tell the difference, except that you know exactly what you’re getting with their colors. The selection is a whole lot smaller, however the colors they have are the best. Their red is the perfect red. Their purple is the perfect purple. Their pink is the perfect pink. The only thing I don’t like is the bottle. It’s impossible to get all the dye out of there. So damn frustrating. I also have to mention that this it the first “funny color” dye brand to make a one-step box version, with developer included. No need to bleach first! Finally!
Tea tree oil. Anything tea tree oil is fantastic for fighting blemishes, the best thing I’ve ever tried. You can get a whole ton of it at The Body Shop, face wipes, toner, night cream, everything you can think of. Their tea tree oil blemish stick has been a life-saver of mine for years. Trust me. Try it.

Cookies.

I’ll just stop here for now and update if I think of any more in the near future. It’s posting night!

Circus Fantasy Perfume

I fell in love with Fantasy perfume by Britney Spears, to my utter amazement, a few years ago when I got it for christmas. While most other perfumes just smell like flowers in alcohol to me, I loved that this had some very warm sweet notes to it. It was very unique as far as commercial scents go. I mean it has cupcake smell in it, come on. So when I read about the collection in Wikepedia (shut up) I decided I couldn’t wait to try the rest of the collection.

Yesterday I came across Circus Fantasy in the drug store. I really wanted to try Midnight Fantasy the most, but this is what they had, what can you do. I got it in the big bottle. The box is awesome, very classic vintage circus, and the bottle itself is beautiful too. It reminds me of one of those orbs that monarchs hold. I think having the whole collection of these would make for a great display on the vanity.

The scent however confuses me, and that fact alone bothers me almost as much as if it was a bad smell, which it isn’t at all. The top notes of this perfume are supposed to be raspberry and apricot blossom, but all I smell is lemon. The middle notes are supposed to be floral, including violet and orchid, which come out as the perfume dries. And yet still, I smell lemon. I think they’re in there but they seem to be trying to hide. It’s bugging the hell out of me. Mike said he smells no lemon, which is bugging me even more because I feel like my nose is tricking me and I really want to smell what I’m apparently supposed to be smelling. I especially want to smell the bottom notes of vanilla and musk, because those warm sweet smells are always my favorite. I’m told in other reviews that this comes out as the perfume dries. But this brings out a flaw of this perfume in that it really doesn’t last long. I’ve been spraying it again and again (I’m alone indoors, not smothering people with my fumes) waiting in vain for the vanilla to come out. I get barely a hint and then the perfume seems to be gone altogether. Where is it? Can you tell me? This stuff is messing with my head.

Confusion aside, I had been considering getting a sharp clean citrus scent for a while, since I love the grapefruit scent of my Fresh Start products from Tresemme. So this does satisfy that need as well as provide a perfect young fresh summer scent. It’s not my most favorite perfume ever, and it can smell a bit generic and even like a cleaner in the first moments you spray it. But I do like it, probably more than I’m letting on here. So I’m keeping it and I would recommend it. I still can’t wait to try out Midnight Fantasy, being the darker more mysterious member of the group. And of course I could never forget the wonderfully awesome and unique non-alcohol scents of Goth Rosary.

Wait, is that a violet I smell?

Soap And Glory Scrub Your Nose In It

I started using Soap and Glory Scrub Your Nose In It facial scrub almost a year ago. I finally had a little money and the opportunity to try out some of the cute pink vintage bath and body products that had been springing up all over my drug store. Definitely the packaging is what made me want it in the first place. It’s so cute, I couldn’t resist. But this stuff actually lived past being a mere novelty for me. I love it.
This facial scrub is great. It’s bluish green, and is the perfect consistency. It’s grainy enough to feel it (I know a lot of us like to feel the scratchiness so we really feel it working) but fine enough not to be awkward or painful. It’s actually really creamy. It also smells amazing. It’s a mix of cucumber and mint, so it smells super clean, and lives you skin feeling really clean and fresh. This is absolutely my favorite part.
Scrub Your Nose In It actually doubles as a really effective clay mask when you lay it on a little thicker and leave it for a few minutes. The main purpose of it is to tighten and unclog pores, and really works. I’ve read quite a few reviews from women saying that their pores seemed to completely disappear with this stuff. Now I still have visible pores. It’s not a miracle. But I have noticed a big difference, especially after using it as a mask on my trouble areas. I actually have to get really close to see my pores, and my blackheads are really faded. It’s also been a huge help in finally letting me get rid of that stubborn rash I had. Between this and not holding my hand against my face in my sleep anymore, it’s completely and totally gone. I still have some blotchiness from the resultant scarring, because my skin is very sensitive, but it’s now completely smooth, and I would no longer be the least bit embarrassed to be seen without makeup. My skin hasn’t looked this good in a really long time. Like 14 years long time. So of course I would definitely deem this stuff worth spending my money on, and I would love to try more products from the line.

Another review can be found here: http://dailyfashionblog.blogspot.com/2007/08/scrub-your-nose-in-quickie-review.html

The Perfect Eyeliner

Eyeliner isn’t easy. It takes a lot of practice to apply properly, and the brands can be hit and miss. So I’ve been meaning to write about it for a while.

I mentioned Stila eyeliner when I posted about my last trip to Sephora, but I feel the need for a quick update here…
This stuff sucks.
On my hand in the store it was great, but I learned something important. The pressure you use on your hand in-store is notably more than what you would use on your eye, which is more delicate. So while it seemed great at the time, I found that the lighter level of pressure you use on your eye is not enough to get the pigment out. I have to press harder, and this makes it almost impossible to get a steady line. It makes my lines wobbly, thick, and smudgey looking, and the fine points on the wings are impossible. The Kat von D Autograph liner, while it takes a long time to dry, only requires the most minimal – if any – pressure of the fine brush, so you can create the delicate lines you need to easily. So I threw out the Stila went back to the Kat von D autograph liner. It felt good. I know some of you will still prefer a felt tip over a brush tip, but if you haven’t decided yet this is something to consider.

Now, the technique. A lot of people just stretch their eyes out and keep the line going out past the corners. Ehhhhh not the best. If you’re just doing a basic job it’s ok, but I wouldn’t do it that way for the pinup look. Clearly when you let go of your eye it changes shape. And a nice 50s wing has a distinct upward curve that continues the shape of the lower lash line. This seems challenging, but it’s not as bad as it seems. First of all, you want to do the wing before anything else. You should start by drawing a line from the corner of your eye, continuing the upward curve of the lower lash line going towards the end of your eyebrow. If your eyes are hooded you may need to take it up a little higher so it doesn’t get lost. If you have trouble getting it even, I find it helps to actually start at the tip, or mark off how high you’re going with a very tiny dot, and make sure the dots line up on each eye before continuing. Then you can start from the dot and curve down to match the lower lash line, or do as before and follow that line up to that point. This is all very wordy and sounds a bit tricky, but it’s it’s really not bad.

Once you have that done, you can line your upper lash line, just regular. Then go back to the tip of your wing, and make a line that swoops in a downward curve and connects seamlessly with your upper lash line. The less you swoop it, i.e. the straighter your line connecting down is, the more 60s the final product will look. Fill it in, and you’re done! Then if you want to add a little more drama, you can use an angled brush to smudge some eyeshadow into your lower lashline. Black is standard, but you can actually use any color you like and have a little fun with it. I like bright teal. This is my cop-out way of mixing it up.

This video mixes up the order a bit but it’s basically the same. I just like to do the wing first so I can open my eyes to check if it’s even without smudging anything since my eyes are hooded. It takes a while to get going (I hate that) so start at 2:40 if you want to cut to the chase.

Update: I recently found this. Even better than the video!

Organizing Your Makeup – For the Average Person

I’m not a pro, and while I love to experiment once in a while, I really wouldn’t consider myself a makeup geek or fanatic in any way. I’m terrible at application and I’ve had the same basic routine for about 2 years with just a few tweeks here and there depending on my changing moods. So I really don’t have a lot of makeup, but being femme I still have enough to get REALLY messy really fast. I’m thinking most of you fit into this same category.
So when I got a little too frustrated by the little hurricane covering my dresser, I started looking up videos on how to organize it all. I should have expected that virtually all of these videos were geared towards makeup artists and fanatics, people with multiple huge eyeshadow palettes (DVD stackers are perfect for that!) and tackle boxes full of lipsticks.

Whoa.

Clearly, I have no need for this stuff. I won’t be running off to Walmart to buy a 3 foot high plastic set of drawers.
But it did give me some ideas, which I would like to pass on to you. Since my makeup collection is a whole lot smaller, I just made the storage smaller. I got some glasses out of the kitchen (hey, no spending!) of the size I felt was appropriate. They should be clear so you can see what’s inside them. In one of them I put all the tall skinny things, like mascara, lip gloss, and eyeliner. I may actually need to get a bit of a bigger glass for those. In another I put the flat things like eye shadows and small blushes. In a third I put bobby pins and little hair clips. You can also use a glass or pencil holder for your brushes if you don’t already use one. The bigger things, like foundation and powder stayed separate and on its own. There’s not much of it at all so it doesn’t matter.
Of all the things I organized in this way, they were all things that I use not necessarily every day, but on at least a weekly or so basis. All the rest was put in a little velvet bag and stuffed into the back of a drawer. You can use a makeup case like you probably already do because, duh. Don’t forget to go through this every once in a while for things that may be overdue for the trash, or ready to be included in your routine. Sometimes the best thing to do before makeup shopping in a store is shop in your own collection. It’s easy to forget all the stuff you have. The only things I haven’t included by now are the items I carry around with me which stay in my bag, which is stick foundation, eyeliner, and a lipstick.


It was kind of amazing how quick and easy it was. I’m almost feeling stupid now, but hey, what are you gonna do? I’m also thinking that it would be really cool if you could get your hands on some pretty little apothecary jars for this, and you could even put interesting if irrelevant labels on them, just because. And if they have lids, all the better if you need to travel.
So that should pretty much do you. If you have more things, use bigger containers, up to and including the aforementioned 3 foot high drawers. If you have less, your dresser is probably a lot cleaner than the rest of ours. I admire that.

Teacher’s pet 😛