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?

Etsy Part 1: My Favorite Purchases

I noticed that in a lot of my articles, especially those about shopping, I mention Etsy as one of my all time favorite online shopping sites. This most definitely hasn’t changed, so I thought it deserved an article all its own. I’ll talk about how it works, the awesome stuff you can find there (in a word, everything), my favorite shops and stuff I’ve bought, and a little extra fun.

I first discovered this site when I became a member of Offbeat Bride, an online community for non-cookie cutter people who want non-cookie cutter weddings. Actually, I discovered a lot of my favorite shops when I was planning my wedding. All the girls raved about Etsy constantly, so I had to check it out. I’ve been hooked ever since. As I’ve said many times, it’s like Ebay in that it’s a site that hosts countless shops held by individuals. The difference it’s all about vintage and handmade items, so everything available is unique, and there’s no bidding. You can find EVERYTHING here, from the stupid, ridiculous, hilarious, amazing, useless, perfect, gorgeous, clever, and everything you never thought you needed SO badly. Best. Site. Ever. Want to see some of the things I’ve bought as an example? If you like what you see, click the pictures for links to the shops.

This is the first thing I bought besides a pendant made of watch parts. It’s an alternative to a ring bearer pillow, made like a treasure chest. I found it so perfect and elegant, and so unique. The seller added red roses at my request. I now keep it on display in my living room.

These earrings are really simple, and really pretty. They go with everything. EIGHT bucks. The shop is one of my favorites for elegant steampunk jewelry.

This is a beautiful gold hair vine with pink accents I wore on my wedding day instead of a veil. It’s made of wire so you can bend it to work any way you want. Around a bun, horizontally across the back, along a french twist; the possibilities are endless. Unfortunately the shop no longer seems to exist, but there are a lot of shops selling similar items still out there.

This soft shrug was bought just in case it rained on our wedding day. This was also custom made for me in a vanilla color. A while later the name of the shop, Pinar Eris, was bugging me, because it was just so familiar. So I plugged it into my trusty Wikipedia and read that this designer has actually made dresses for the Oscars. How amazing is that?

From Poppenkraal, another great shop for gorgeous Victorian and Steampunk style jewelry, fancier than London’s Gate. Now you tell me where else you could ever find earrings like this.

Etsy has a huge selection of beautiful hair clips, and this one is definitely stunning. It even curves, so it conforms to the shape of your head without sticking out like one I bought from another shop. Just make sure you have some good glue. This one is currently sitting disassembled on my coffee table. I really hope I can bring it back to life 😥

This here is a perfect example of what we here on Etsy call “upcycled.” It’s like recycled, but it’s just been revamped to be made better, not something entirely different. This lovely item is a pimped out vintage clutch. It’s too much fun.

This amazing Victorian necklace is another purchase from Poppenkraal, and was only $35. It even came with extra beads in case any fell off. So far, they haven’t.

My first vintage dress. It’s too big, and I knew it would be. Maybe I’ll have it tailored down – in a temporary way, I wouldn’t want to damage it. Even so, I’m in love with this dress. The color, the golden sheen, how light it feels. Even its size. With a belt it looks even older than the early 1960s. It billows almost in the way of something from the late 1910s, or early 1920s. At least that’s the feeling I get. It makes me feel like I should be sitting on a porch on a hot summer night while it rains. Do I sound ridiculous? That’s how you know how much I love this dress.

This is a phone I bought last Christmas for the owner of the Foxy Shoppe. She’s been an incredibly generous sponsor of Drawn and Plastered, and she’s such a great lady. I had to buy her something to thank her. I’m pretty sure this phone is from the 70s, but it was made to look like it’s from the 30s. When Pam opened the box she was speechless. It turns out it’s exactly what she’s been wanting since she first opened the shop. Now it sits out on display.

And finally we come to my most recent purchase, dress from about 1958-1960 (according to the style of zipper) by Mr. Mort. It fits great except for a little room in the shoulders which I stitched up. It seems to me like a poor girl’s version of that stunning tweed Dior dress Dita von Teese loves so much. All I’d need to complete the look is some long leather gloves. I wore it during the long day I spent traveling to Vegas, and felt like a lady Cary Grant or somebody from Mad Men. Traven7 is the very best when it comes to beautiful perfect vintage dresses from the late 40s to the early 60s with full skirts. Her prices are high but everybody knows she’s worth it. I’ve missed out on a few of her dresses before because they sold so quickly, but I’m so glad I finally got this one.

Wow. It seems I got pretty excited there and rambled on a bit. Let’s say I save the rest for another post?

An Assortment of Great Corset Articles by The Lingerie Addict

I could go on forever about corsets. That much is painfully obvious. Recently I’ve been flipping through The Lingerie Addict, and loving every minute of it. I’m very impressed by the quality of information provided there, and instead of just repeating what they’ve said, I’m going to share my favorite articles of theirs with you. That way you can learn some cool things, and I can shut up. For a while.

What Everybody Should Know About the Difference Between Real Corsets & Fake Corsets

First off, this article speaks a lot to me. Years back, I was one of those naive unfortunates who bought that (unknowingly) fake red corset featured in the article. Words can’t do justice to how horrible that thing was. I didn’t wear it even once. To be fair, it was the first time I had attempted to purchase a corset since my first one, which was pretty darn great. Though of course common sense should have tipped me off a bit. And Damnit I am SICK of seeing this plastic CRAP every time I go for a night out! No, I don’t care if you’re insulted. This is how bad you look, and I’m cringing at you when you’re not looking, or when you do so much as mention them in a non-negative way. Do yourselves a favor and read this, or wear a shirt instead. I BEG you.

51 Places to Buy Your Next Corset

You know how often I get asked where to go to buy a corset? I don’t either. But it’s a lot. So this list sums things up really nicely. Omitted from the list however are Desert Orchid, which are beyond fantastic if you like the hourglass shape, and Jupiter Moon, which I haven’t tried yet but you bet your ass I’ll be reviewing them when I get my order in a couple months.

What (You Didn’t Know) to Look for in a Corset: 5 Popular Myths Debunked

This article was the first I read, and I found it extremely well-informed, so you should read it. I even learned a few things myself.

Corseting for Your Needs, Part II: How to Choose the Right Corset for Your Body

A complaint I often hear? “Corsets aren’t right for my body type.” Bullshit. So very much, so very steaming. Everyone can wear a corset, unless they have a medical anomaly like something I can’t really think of because I’m not a doctor. The only body type that can’t wear a corset is pregnant. Even then, pregnancy corsets did exist in the Victorian era, though I tend to think your doctor would have an issue with that, so don’t. Here’s…well it’s pretty self-explanatory.

Corseting for Your Needs, Part I: How to Choose the Right Corset for Any Occasion

I do ask myself occasionally what corset would make the most sense to wear/order, but in general “whatever the fuck I want” tends to override that. Nevertheless, here’s a good and practical starting point.

Solo Corset Fun: How to Lace Yourself Up

I’ve never had an issue with lacing myself; pretty much the only time other people have laced me up was because they asked to, or even wormed their way in and just went for it (By the way, girls in the bathroom, it’s not necessary. I can handle it. If you really want to give it a shot, fine, but at least ask. If you just swing behind me and grab on then that’s pretty obnoxious. I don’t just come forth and hike up your pants). But I know many do have some difficulty. This article will help.

Well, that’s it for now.

UPDATE: I found another one! You could see this as an extension to my Corset FAQ, but written by someone else. And it’s SO nice to see there are other people out there who I can relate to about this. So the biggest thing I have to say here is “ditto” and “thank you.” (Though, to be honest I highly question the notion of young girls sleeping in their corsets with their hands tied to the bed. This is more than likely gathered from fetish and fantasy articles of the time and have little basis in fact. A good comparison is with bras today. They were worn for essentially the same purpose of support and shaping, and while some ladies wear bras to bed in modern times, it’s not overly typical.)

Tightlacing 101: 4 Myths About Waist Training with a Corset

Bang Thing

First of all I really have to thank Micheline Pitt for this one. She posted the video that taught me this. It wasn’t my idea, I’m just sharing it with you.

I always thought clip-in bangs were expensive. I remember seeing them only for about 50$, and I definitely wasn’t going to pay that, so I never got any, as cool as I thought they would be. Then Micheline posted a hair video. I was shocked to learn that her bangs weren’t real, and even more shocked to learn that at least one pair came from Sally’s for a mere 7$. She was using one more expensive kind for long side swept bangs, and the Bang Thing from Sally’s for bettie bangs, which she cut herself. I did a complete double take, and ran off to the website to buy two of them immediately. I was not disappointed.

The Bang Thing looks hilarious when you first put it on. Actually it looks really stupid. But for 7$ you’re not mad, you just laugh at the hilarity of it. But it really just takes a minute to get it looking good. Clip all your own hair neatly out of the way, clip in the bang thing, and style it by putting one small piece on the thin side of the part to keep it looking natural, and ease the rest into place to the side, out of your eyes. Simple, and very cute. Micheline uses a scarf as a headband to hide the top edge of it. You can use that, or a bandana, or a headband, or anything else equally obvious. I know she doesn’t use this brand for the long bangs, but I find they work really well. They’re a tad bulky for sure, but I just tucked some of the top hair under my bandana and it helped, as well as to hide some of my natural hair in the front, since it was important as my hair is really faded right now and doesn’t quite match.

“Did you tell her about your little hat there? You know, your little hair hat there.”

Things got only slightly trickier when it came to cutting the second Bang Thing into bettie bangs. Micheline is experienced at cutting hair, but recommends having a stylist do it for others. Of course I was way too impatient. Making that first cut was a touch terrifying. Almost like cutting your real hair. You instantly wonder if you’re being an idiot and going to need to buy a new one. But I figured it out and it was quite the success. Here’s what you do.

And for my next clever disguise…

First cut the bulk of the bang thing just enough to indicate the approximate length you want. This should be at about eyebrow level or so. If you’re nervous at all, go a little longer, just enough so you can see. Then get the thing off, because you don’t want to risk cutting your own hair anymore. I was already starting to make this mistake, it’s easier than you think. Now, one important thing to keep in mind is that bettie bangs are actually round. I would have had an impossible time getting the shape right while it was still attached to my head, so I got the idea to use a bowl as a stencil. Yeah, I gave my fake hair a bowl cut. Get a decent sized cereal bowl and press it firmly over the bang thing, right up to the edge of where you cut. Make sure the hair is pulled taut so you’ll get it even. Then just cut all the hair that sticks out from the bowl. This makes a mess, so best to do it over a paper towel, even if you cut the paper towel in the process. Actually this even helps, because otherwise the hair just wants to creep out of the way of your scissors if they’re not especially sharp.

You. Rawr!

When you’re about done, lift it up, comb it straight out with a fine tooth comb, and inspect for any uneven pieces. Fix them carefully, still without the bang thing attached to your head. Now get a really small barrel curling iron or small flat iron and curl the very ends under. This will help give it the final shape and disguise any pieces that might not be quite perfect. You’re done!

When you put it on you can adjust the look of the length by placing it further forward or back on your head. You’ll use the same bandana or scarf or whatever to cover up the back edge. Mine looks super cute, and I totally suck at this. So there you go! Watch Micheline’s video, and add that tip about the bowl for the bettie bangs, and you’ll have some really cute bangs that you can play with for different looks without the commitment, or barely any money. Bang Thing rules!

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:


Yeah it’s a post about reading. What-eva! I do what I want!

The first thing anyone knows about me is that I am a book FREAK. I read like it’s going out of style, I love to buy books, organize books, look at books, plan my next home library upgrade, scavenge through used book stores, the smell of them, everything. So it was only natural that my dad, who as a rule only buys technological gadgets as gifts, got me a Kobo Touch for Christmas. At first, I really did not want one. I love them, I love the idea of them being compact and portable and environmentally friendly, all of that. But how could I give up REAL books? Well obviously I didn’t have to. I made a weird little compromise with myself, and as long as I’m still buying the real thing, I really do enjoy reading them on my Kobo. Now I’ve read 3.

Good stuff:

-You can adjust the font and font size. A lot of books have very tiny print, now it’s not an issue.

-I’ll never run out of anything to read. Even if for whatever reason I had to stop buying real books, I’ve downloaded about 150 or so, so I won’t run out for many years, making this one thing I would definitely want with me on a desert island. In the past this has been an issue about once or twice a year, making me resort to whatever odds and ends I could find on my shelf. This is the reason I can say I’ve read A Practical Guide to Racism, and Why Do Men Have Nipples?.

-I’m not a bath person, but if I was, I could put this in a ziploc and read in the tub. Last time I tried this with a paper book, it got all soggy. Some obsessive readers have taken it into the shower. At least I can say I’m not THAT bad.

-Ebooks are pirate-able.

-If I’m leaving the house and know I will finish a book before I get home, it no longer means I have to cram two into my bag.

-Customizing with decals and cases is fun.

-Reading life, the Kobo page that gives you your reading stats, is also moderately fun.

The Bad:

Finishing a book on the Kobo and then starting another one is really anti-climactic. It doesn’t feel like you really DID anything. You just turn the page, touch the screen, and there’s another book. I love being able to close a paper book, go add it to the shelf, and pick up another one. It doesn’t seem like a big deal, but to me it kind of is. Kobo books just don’t feel that “real” to me. The compact-ness also has that downside. It’s just not that satisfying to stare at your screen of downloads like it is to gaze lovingly at your big beautiful library shelves. There’s something lame, artificial, and wimpy about it in comparison. And you can’t play with categorizing the books on the Kobo either. They’re just alphabetical. You can’t lend books on a Kobo out, and it’s pretty stupid to will your kobo to a needy school when you die. Ok now you think I’m crazy. But I have big plans for my library. Important ones.

So now I’m doing both. I’m downloading to the Kobo and reading whatever I find available for free on there. Whatever I read on it, I go ahead and buy a used copy of the real thing to flip through and all that good stuff. When I finish it, I still get to put the real thing on the real shelf. Whatever I can’t download, I just stick with the real thing. I’m not about to pay for the same book twice. I’m enjoying this system.

So whether you love ereaders or hate them, I can see your point. If you like both, go ahead and have both 🙂

Wardrobe Essentials

I just want to say that I don’t believe there is any such thing as “wardrobe essentials.” Aren’t you sick of hearing about these over and over? It’s always the same things. Black pants, jeans, White button down shirt, LBD, etc etc. But look, obviously we’re not all so much the same. The last time I wore a white button down was at least 6 years ago. Essential? Not so much. I only own jeans for cold and very lazy days. Some of you might not have either of those. As we all know from reading this blog, simple casual dresses are at least as easy, if not more than jeans, and that’s something I will endlessly preach until they day they invent something better. And the LBD, while nice and useful, did not enter my wardrobe for some time. I still don’t think I need one. The little RED dress, that’s where it’s at.
The point is, you don’t need other people to tell you what to buy or what to wear. You can accept help on what makes it easier and what looks very nice, but to use the word “essential” and parade it out there like you’re fashionably deficient if you don’t have these things is just stupid. You need to figure out what YOUR essentials are based on what you like and what your lifestyle is. Hell, maybe that means scrubs in your favorite color. For example, heels are a major essential for me. Anything else falls in the category of slippers, whether appropriate for outside the house or not. You may not feel even remotely this way. Fun, glamorous, versatile dresses are my biggest essential of all. But while I think you should definitely TRY these things, if they’re not for you they’re not for you. If you fight against this it’s going to accomplish just the opposite of what these people preaching “essentials” say they will. You won’t feel put together, you’ll just feel weird and uncomfortable.
How can you figure out what your essentials are? It’s as easy of thinking of your favorite things. What do you gravitate to every day, what do you love, what makes you happy? Think of this in a fairly simple way. Not “the pinstripe pants with the chain on the hip” but maybe “funky/dressy separates.” It should be stuff that really encompasses the essence of who you are while allowing for plenty of variation. Most importantly, don’t be afraid to experiment a little outside this territory either. It’s the key to really evolving your style and your image of yourself. If it feels wrong, don’t worry about it. But it just might feel very right, and then you’ve taken a step forward and discovered something new. How exciting is that? This way you let yourself be your own style guide. You’re better than being told what to do by TV and magazines. They don’t know you. You do.

Diva Cup

Now if you’re a guy, or otherwise too dainty, I urge you to not read the rest of this article. I know this sounds embarrassingly like an ad, but really, it will make every woman out there very, very happy. Consider this a public service announcement for women everywhere. I just can’t not talk about the amazing Diva Cup.
Every woman hates her period. You hate constantly making sure you’re stocked up on supplies, keeping an eye on the clock until it’s time to change your pad or tampon, and the thought of being away from a bathroom for a long period of time is unpleasant to say the least. And think of all the wasted money and waste going into the landfills. No thanks.
The Diva Cup takes care of ALL of that. Seriously. Actually these used to be popular back in the early 20th century, the 30s I think, but then the craze for disposable items began and the memory of the menstrual cup was all but lost. It’s only in this day and age of going green that it’s been rediscovered, and boy am I ever happy it was. The Diva Cup is a surgical silicone cup that can be left in for up to 12 hours at a time. Since it’s non absorbent there’s no risk of TSS. And since it’s vacuum sealed inside you there’s no risk of leaking at all, once you get the hang of using it, which takes about 3 months, so just hang in there. When you’re ready you just dump it, rinse it, re-insert, and carry on with your day. It pays for itself in only 3 months and lasts at least 10 years. You just boil it between cycles to sterilize it.

I’ve heard some women say that the thought of seeing their own blood is gross, so they would rather not try this. But honestly how gross is putting bleached cotton inside your body to act as a moist bacteria magnet? THAT is disgusting. For me to talk about every reason why this is one of God’s gifts to women would take ages, but I will summarize here and urge you as much as I can to visit the website to learn more, and buy one right now.
It’s cheap, it’s green, it’s convenient as hell, it’s much healthier, and it absolutely WORKS. You’re welcome!

Conair Ionic Hot Rollers

So as you know by now if you’ve been reading this blog regularly, I got my hair cut a (long) while ago and ended up having it styled in a fairly sleek and modern way. It wasn’t quite what I was going for that day but I did like it enough to want to do it myself once in a while. I tried this by copying exactly what the stylist did, which taught me something very important. The trick to getting curls to work with a curling iron, if your hair is not of the cooperating type, is to pin the curl after making it until it cools. This improves the situation dramatically. And a little off-topic, but doing this with a small barrel curling iron is what a “dry” pin curl is, achieving pin curls with heat instead of moisture.

Anyway, this wasn’t too hard to recreate. I couldn’t get the curls to stay pinned in that perfectly upright even way that almost looked like a weird hairstyle in itself, but it totally worked. I learned something new! The problem was that it took way too damn long. So I wanted some hot rollers so I could do essentially the same thing, but speed it up for early morning situations. Options are always great, and this would be a change from my typical 40s look if I ever got a little bored. I called my mom to ask her if she still had her old ones, assuming she wouldn’t be using them since cutting her hair short, but they were already long gone. Next thing I new, she had gone and bought me my own set! Not only that, but it was apparently the best one they had. Holy crap, thanks!

So now that my long-ass back story is basically finished, on to the review. And since trying them out that first night, I MUST review them, because I don’t know how I ever lived without them before.

First of all, they are indeed as quick as I expected them to be. They take about ten minutes to put in, and 20 minutes to cool off. That’s a perfect amount of time to wait while I get dressed and put my makeup on, so it doesn’t really add much time to my morning routine. Hooray for multi-tasking! I was extremely worried at first about burning my fingers, but while they were quite hot, I didn’t. You just have to keep your fingers moving and everything will be fine; don’t just sit there holding on to a fully heated hot roller. There’s even a place on the unit to heat up the clips, so you get heat from inside and out, making things a lot quicker and more efficient. I found that when you’re curling the bang area it’s too hot to have that clip lying against your head if it flops over a bit, so just stick a little tissue under there to protect your forehead. So the heat level was great, and I’ll get back to this too because the benefit was two-fold.

Speaking of the clips, I love them. I remember my mom’s old set having pins, and they were impossible to use. I could never get them to stay. And according to a lot of the hair tutorials I’ve seen, it’s very common for girls to swap out these pins for claw clips. The Conair hot roller set actually uses claw clips! So there’s no denting, they don’t poke your head, and they’re a lot easier to use. And they MOSTLY stay in place easier. Mostly, because – and this is the only con I can see to this item – I’ve found they don’t like to stay onto the biggest size rollers. I’ve had enough of them pop out that I just stopped using that size. For me this is not such a big deal, I don’t need the whole set to curl my whole head, and I like using the smaller sizes anyway.

My first set with the hot rollers. Quite nice if I do say so myself.

For me, where this product really shines is that because it’s such a quick alternative to a wet set, I’ve found it to be invaluable to saving my hair when that fails, which is surprisingly often. In fact I’ve already used them for this purpose three times this week, today included, and now I don’t have to worry anymore about going out in public with one side of my hair curly and the other straight, or the whole thing straight because that was the only way to even it out. That always felt like such a waste of effort, and I don’t like having straight hair. Blah. Now, problem solved!

And speaking of the heat level again, the best part about this is that since they don’t get as hot as a curling iron, they don’t seem to loosen or undo the curls that DID work. At least half of my effort doesn’t go to waste, and the remaining curls can now be salvaged. And the results are even enough that nobody would notice what a mess I woke up with that morning. I’m extremely grateful to have these.

So if you’re going for a modern curled style or need “vintage hair insurance”, I’m sure you’ll love these hot rollers.

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer, Surreal Skin Foundation and Stila Eyeshadow

Wow that’s a long title!

Remember when I reviewed Benefit Playstix and Kat von D Autograph Eyeliner and said I would continue to pay for the good stuff where warranted? A few weeks ago I returned to Sephora, that magical and expensive candy land for girls and fabulous men. This time I had two things in mind. Foundation again, because I was out, and eyeshadow primer. As happy as I was with the quality and application of the Benefit Play Stix, that color issue wasn’t so great. Four shades do very little to accommodate most skin tones, and as Mike pointed out in the car one day, it didn’t accommodate me – at least in daylight. While it looked perfectly fine in the terrible yellow, shadowy lighting of my room, outside my face was half orange. Mmmm…nope.

So the first thing I did, after nearly losing myself at the Kat von D display, was ask the sales girl what was the most similar product in a color that suited me. When I told her the Benefit was orange on me she seemed very confused. She looked at the stick, then back at me in a sort of disbelief. Finally I put it on and she saw how the color looked much different. I also showed her the example of a drug store brand I was carrying which looked very dark in the pot but almost like white-face on my skin. I think she learned something. You really have to try makeup on.

Luckily Sephora lets you do this, and I finally landed on something that looked good, Urban Decay Surreal Skin Foundation. Still not 100% perfect, because you don’t get a whole lot in the pot and the brush isn’t the best, but an improvement nonetheless. I’ll stick with it if it lasts long enough.

As for the primer, I walked around for about 45 minutes with the Kat von D stuff until I noticed Urban Decay Primer Potion in the discount bin, because it was still in the old packaging. I didn’t really know what I was doing anyway, so I grabbed it because it was 2$ cheaper. Good move! I found out later that day that I got the gold one (I thought the gold bottle was just standard, silly me) so it can also be used as a shadow and highlighter. Then I REALLY put the stuff through its paces. I put it on in the morning, went to work, came home, went to bed, got up, went to work AGAIN, and by the end of that second day it still looked way better than just one hour in shadow without any primer, with only minimal fading. Holy shit! And yes, yes I do know that sleeping in your makeup is wrong. I often do it anyway. A tip: Because yellow is the opposite of purple, the gold shade works as a great color corrector for under-eye circles under concealer.

Yesterday at work my mom and I suddenly got on the topic of primer. I don’t think she’d ever even heard of it. She said she never wore eyeshadow anymore because of how badly it creased, smudged, and faded. When I told her about the primer she had to have it, along with a face primer to combat summer melting. So I’m going to pick that up for her on the weekend, and she also wants to take a trip down there with me one of these days to see what other awesome goodies she can find that she never knew existed.

Finally, the Stila eyeshadow in the “It Girl” palette. I got this in the discount bin too, and since I had about 20$ left and that’s what it cost, I bought it. I figured it was a great neutral palette that could be worn natural or smokey, and loved the gold glitter in the deep brown shade and pinky pearlecsense (sp?) of the champagne shade. The palette is gorgeous, highly pigmented, and blends beautifully. It even feels good, it’s so soft! I adore it. Mom wants this too but in a more age-appropriate matte version. Do they have this? I’ll take a look.

So now my eyes look totally pro, for a long time, and my face is no longer orange. I’m going to replace my autograph eyeliner with tattoo liner because I’m forever opening my eyes too soon before it dries and getting horrible black smudges, but beyond this I think I’m about done stocking up on everything I need and can move on to things that are more purely for fun. I wonder what that will be?