Saturday, October 17, 2015

How to Wear Colored Mascara

If you're friends with me, you know I love to try outrageous and unconventional makeup. I live for black lipstick and a blue smoky eye. But I recently rediscovered a more wearable unconventional makeup product: colored mascara.
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Maybelline Great Lash limited edition colored mascara (source)

I bought three of the Maybelline limited edition Great Lash mascara back in the summer of 2013 when they came out (in Wink of Pink, Teal Appeal, and Vision in Violet), along with the one colored mascara from their permanent line (in Royal Blue). I remember I had the toughest time choosing which colors to buy. I was there with a friend, and was on a seventh grader's budget. Yesterday I had to dress in all pink for spirit day because I had a swim meet that evening. I thought it the perfect opportunity to don pink mascara (with matching pink lipstick, too). It was a big hit at school! A classmate from the swim team mentioned it at practice because she heard about it but didn't get to see it in action. I got tons of compliments! But pulling off colored mascara is no easy feat. Allow me to offer some tips and brand suggestions.

Where to Buy Colored Mascara
DRUGSTORE brands that offer colored mascaras:

  1. NYX's "Color Mascara", $7
  2. Maybelline's "Great Lash Washable Mascara," $7
  3. Milani's "Lash Art Colored Mascara," $5
  4. Physicians Formula's "Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Mascara," $11
  5. Covergirl's "Exact Eyelights Eye-Brightening Mascara," $9
  6. Here's some high-end/department store ones
Outdated drugstore limited edition colored mascara lines:
  1. L'Oreal Paris's "Voluminous Color Creations Mascara" from 2014
  2. Wet n Wild's "Color Up! Colored Mascara" from summer 2015
  3. Maybelline's "Great Lash Limited Edition Colored Mascara" from 2013
My suggestion? The NYX one, by far. It's the most opaque and readily available from what I can tell.

My Tips on Rocking Colored Mascara
(the links are to more detailed articles)
  1. Pick a color that compliments your eye color. Brown eyes can rock just about any color, there's a plus for those of us with boring eyes! Here's a chart on what colors compliment what eye colors.
    Best Colored Mascara for Every Eye Color
  2. If you're wearing pink/red and it looks like you have pinkeye from far away, you're doing it right. You want your lashes to be completely covered. Don't worry, from up close you can tell it's the lashes, not the eyes.
  3. If you can still see black (or whatever color your natural eyelashes are) through the color, you're doing it wrong. Try applying it with a fan brush (see #4) or using more coats.
  4. To get the color all the way to the roots (especially from the aerial view of your lashes), use a fan brush or flat eyeshadow brush. This tip is also great if you have blonde lashes and use a brown or black mascara on a daily basis! How to Apply Mascara With a Fan Brush
  5. You can make your own makeshift colored mascara by heating up colored eyeliner. We all know colored liner is easier to find than colored mascara.
  6. To avoid clumpy, spidery lashes, wait for each coat to dry before going in with the next one.
  7. If you still end up with clumpy, spidery lashes, separate the individual lashes with a small tweezer or a sewing needle. If this method is good enough for Audrey Hepburn, it's good enough for you! It sounds tedious, but it's actually not that bad. Audrey Hepburn Mascara Trick
  8. Apply your mascara after you pick out your outfit, so you can match it better without having to guess what color you're going to wear today.
  9. I'm sure you could get away with it, but if you're doing winged liner, I wouldn't go for the standard black. I would use the mascara as liner so your eyeliner matches your eyelashes. There's a life hack/travel tip that if you forget eyeliner but you have your angled eyeliner brush, use your mascara as gel liner. Don't use it on your waterline though! I'm looking at you, people who used liquid eyeliner on the waterline as a kid. How to Use Mascara as Eyeliner
  10. As far as eyeshadow goes with colored mascara, I would stay away from it. I simply dust translucent powder across my eyelids to cut shine, and apply the mascara. Eyeshadow would distract from the mascara and make it look overdone.
  11. To make the color pop, use a matching, white, or nude pencil liner on the waterline.
I might make a similar post in the future for colored lipstick. If only I had readers to tell me if I should do it or not.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Tips, Hairstyles & Haircuts for (Straight) Middle Parted Hair

All over Pinterest and the Internet, I see girls with side-parted hair. I've tried a side part, and it doesn't look good with my hair or with my face and I feel like I can't pull it off or don't know how to. In any case, I have a middle part and I never see tips or hairstyles that work for girls with middle parted hair.  A lot of Pinterest hairstyles show models with side parted hair, and it doesn't work on middle parted hair. Or the models have bangs and I don't.

  1. Your hair may be straight and organized-looking, and you may have a middle part right where everyone can see it, but you don't have to have a flawless part. A messy part (but not TOO messy. Not "one half is on the left, one half is on the right") can look effortlessly cute.
  2. You may have a middle part, but you can still do that thing where you finger-comb your hair from the front of the part to make it fall effortlessly and give temporary volume.
  3. No, you can't use texturizing spray. If you curl your hair, you can, but don't do it if your hair is still straight. It just emphasizes the weird, accidental waves that happened while drying.

  1. Stick-straight. This is achieved by straightening or blow drying your hair. Flat ironed straight hair looks better on girls with a middle part. Yes, even though you have straight hair you can still buy a straightener, and no, it's not a waste of your money. But make sure it's sleek and not frizzy!
  2. Normal, but not stick-straight. This is usually how I do my hair anyway, regardless of hairstyle. I part my hair before the shower (so I don't have to brush it after showering), brush my hair in the shower (after conditioner, to help evenly distribute the conditioner), and towel-dry it when I get out. I don't brush it after getting out of the shower. This helps with volume and avoiding having stick-straight hair (which can be boring or drab). Once it's completely dry, I brush it though and add moroccan oil.
  3. Half-up half-down. There's two ways I do this. The first way is by taking a three-inch section from the top of my hair and brushing it back, not leaving the part (Figure 1). The second way is by taking a bigger section from halfway between the part and my ears and brushing it back but leaving the part (Figure 2). Both look great when a hair bow is added on top of the hairband.
  4. Messy bun. I do the messy bun by tipping my head over and using gravity to my advantage to create a voluminous high ponytail, then twisting from the base to the tip (not starting at the tip and just twisting- this creates an off-center, lopsided bun) and twisting around, then using the hair elastic (Figure 3).
  5. Waterfall braid(s). I waterfall braid one or both halves of my hair, and bobby pin it in an X shape about halfway back. (Figure 4)
  6. Sometimes I take an inch sized piece from the front of each side of my hair and bobby pin it in an X about halfway back. Sometimes I twist these sections. It's sort of like a modified half up half down.
Figure 1

Figure 2
Figure 3 (xxx)
Figure 4

  1. The Rachel... from season 4-5 (of Friends). (Figure 5a & b) I have this haircut and while it's annoying when it sometimes curls outwards from the angles, it still ends up looking pretty good and when I make an extra effort to make the angles dry inward, it looks amazing. It also looks great when doing tip #2.
  2. Bangs. (Figure 6a & b) The only way to bangs is to middle part.
  3. The "U" (Figure 7a &b). This haircut looks far better with a middle part. I had this haircut for a long time and loved it when straightened. However, my hair sometimes curls up a bit, and it didn't flatter my accidental waves.
  4. Angles and layers (Figure 8). This is a toned-down and straighter version of #1. The angles are longer and shallower.
Figure 5a
Figure 5b
Figure 6a
Figure 6b
Figure 7a
Figure 7b
    Figure 8

Friday, October 9, 2015

Article Response: Don't Compare Yourself to Others

After submitting my discussion essay on "Self-Reliance" by Ralph Waldo Emerson, we talked about it in class. In English, we just discussed what the article was saying and summarized/paraphrased it, and we didn't get to share our opinions on what Emerson was saying. That's what I've come here for.

The article said a lot of things, but this is one thing that particularly strikes me (aside from what I wrote about yesterday, pre-class discussion).
"Imitation is suicide."
Envy is ignorant because we're all unique and you need to be yourself. (Ex. I'm jealous of so-and-so's hair. But maybe I have nice hair too, so I shouldn't go out and get their haircut.) Envy dehumanizes you because it robs you of your uniqueness. In modern terms: be yourself because everyone else is taken; don't compare yourself to others.
I struggle a lot with comparing myself to others. I think it's mainly because I have a unique face. It doesn't look like everyone else's. I can't exactly match my face shape to any of the seven face shapes (oval is probably the most accurate, but it's more of a squarish/round oval). My nose is wide but not triangular, and I have a small mouth. I look at other people and see something very different than what I see on myself. I'll see a girl whose eyebrows are pointed and on fleek and think, "I wish my eyebrows looked like that." But the thing is, if you copied and pasted some harsh, defined, shapely, arched, pointy eyebrows onto my face, it wouldn't look right on my soft features. Or I'll see a girl with a perfect, ski-slope nose and think, "I wish I had her nose." But my nose looks good on my face. I've been told by friends, "I like your nose!" My nose has character, okay? I'm sure when other people look at me, they don't think, "her eyebrows aren't pointy enough."

Another thing (unrelated to the article): "If you've ever caught yourself saying, 'they're only saying that because they're my friend' when a friend gives you a compliment, stop yourself." (I remember hearing this in a YouTube video, but I couldn't find the video.) Logically, if they didn't believe what they said, they could've said nothing. They didn't have to compliment you. That's not to say you should get your self-worth from what others think of you, but don't put yourself down when you receive a nice compliment.

Another thing: It's all fake. All the beautiful girls you see (especially online) who you're jealous of are wearing craploads of makeup. If you wear a shit ton of makeup, you can look like that too.
[Extension: The concept of wearing makeup because it's fun and you enjoy it vs. wearing it because you're insecure and want to cover up blemishes/etc. is tricky. Your goal as a makeup-wearer is to wear makeup because it's a fun way to express yourself, not correctional makeup to cover up blemishes, redness, sparse eyebrows, or anything else you're insecure about. If makeup is making you insecure, you might want to stop wearing it. Even if you have redness and insecurities. You can stop wearing makeup. (maybe I should take my own advice...)]

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Conformity as a Teenager

I'm a caucasian female teenager (as you might have assumed), and there's a lot of stereotypes associated with us. Especially because I'm not particularly unique in my dress or manner. We all try to avoid being a "basic bitch" to an extent, but this notion is particularly prevalent in girls like me.
I read an excerpt from "Self-Reliance" by Ralph Waldo Emerson for English homework tonight, and the assignment was to write a discussion essay on "pick two lines that strike you and react." Here's what I wrote.
Ralph Waldo Emerson’s “Self-Reliance” explores the theme of conformity. In the essay, while discussing human nature and his own experiences, he observes: “The objection to conforming to usages that have become dead to you is that it…blurs the impression of your character” (332). Emerson argues people strive for uniqueness and unconformity because it’s what differentiates them from everyone else. One’s unique quirks are what defines his personality. Furthermore, a person wants to be unique because it gives him value; it makes them worth something.
Fighting the “basic bitch” stereotype is a daily struggle in my life. I try not to drink my iced coffee with cream and sugar, I avoid wearing oversized sweaters, and I stay away from listening to pop music. However, fads are popular for a reason: because they’re delicious and energizing, or comfortable, or pleasing to the ear. I deprive myself of these small joys to preserve my uniqueness. Sometimes I try to walk the line between my unique preferences and “white girl” trends, such as wearing Uggs but in purple instead of beige, or buying a generic black backpack but covering it in pins that express my individuality, or wearing a sweatshirt and leggings but with Converse instead of running shoes. I’ve always been aware of this “white girl” stereotype but it came to my attention when a friend accused me of being one when I wore an oversized sweatshirt with leggings. I protested, “but I’m wearing it with Converse!” but in the end, there’s no fighting the stereotype. There will always be someone else doing the same thing as you, so if it makes you happy, it’s worthwhile to stay with the trends regardless of it interfering with your individuality.
I hope my English teacher doesn't mind my usage of swears. In my defense, it was the only way to get my point across! "White girl stereotype" just wasn't cutting it.
Anyway, I mainly just wanted to share my essay with you because I thought it could help someone out there who's trying to go against the grain but to no avail. I just wanted to let you know it's okay to be basic. Don't sweat it! We'll all be adults someday, and those pumpkin spice lattes you consumed will all be trivial.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

How to Eliminate Frizz for Straight Hair

I have dealt with frizz for many years now. Everyone seems to think people with straight hair have no problems, so I don't see any advice online. I think I've successfully defeated the enemy. I tried to find a picture of it but couldn't! Because the Internet doesn't know the straight hair struggle!
  1. Rinse your hair after conditioner in the shower with cold water. I've started doing this, and while it's very uncomfortable in the shower while you're doing it, it makes my hair exponentially smoother and less frizzy.
  2. Moroccan oil to keep it hydrated, smooth, and shiny.
  3. Blow dry it.
  4. Straighten it. In my experience, there's no one product you can slap on your hair and eliminate frizz. Frizzy hairs with straight hair are those curly hairs that float around your head. They have split ends, which is how they're also near the roots. You need to either prevent them from happening (rinsing with cold water or blow drying) or flatten them out with a heat tool once they've happened (straightening).

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Tattoos I Want

(updated) Honestly, I will probably never get any of these tattoos. But right now, I think it would be cool to have these tattoos.
I like minimal tattoos, but I'd be down for a more complicated one if it means a lot to me.

1. Asterisk
I'm not sure, but I might want something more minimal than this. This one is the Hot Chili Peppers logo, which is why it's so thick, but a big thick tattoo is a big commitment and it's all about RHCP, which isn't what I want. I also like the RHCP one, but I think I'd just want the traditional five-point asterisk.
Meaning: the asterisk is the fine print. It's the * and the afterthought at the end. I think life comes with a great deal of fine print. There's a lot of stuff no one tells you about. No one tells you people are selfish and primarily self-concerned, and you can't 100% rely on anyone. No one will be your codependent. There won't always be someone there to be your net to catch you and your safety blanket to provide security.
Location: my right side, upper middle thigh.

2. Pink Floyd Dark Side of the Moon Prism
Meaning: The first time I heard Pink Floyd was the first time I realized I can think for myself and I don't have to accept what I'm told without question. I believe it was in eighth grade, and I had this self-actualization moment in the car with my brother when he was telling a story.
Location: Next to my left pelvic/hip bone, on my stomach but near the bone.

(xxx) sorry this is a Harry Styles tattoo forgive me, it was cute and minimalistic
not my picture
not my picture

3. Twenty One Pilots |-/
Meaning: nothing really, I just like their logo and I think it looks dope. I wouldn't get it with the circle around it though.
Location: on the bottom of my foot (on the arch).
Location: finger? I don't know, I definitely wouldn't get this. I like the idea though.
4. XO
Meaning: fake bitches. Staying true to yourself. Nothing.
Location: under my left armpit. Not right under, a few inches below.