I still feel like a tourist…

California Ocean - Haphazard Notions

Only jumping dolphins would make this picture better

When you aren’t originally from California being here can make you feel like you’re on perpetual vacation. I keep forgetting that I’m here to live not to vacation. Everyday has been “Oh, let’s go to the beach!” instead of “Oh, I need to go to the DMV or I should get my brakes looked at like I’ve been meaning to for weeks”. How can anyone get anything done when they catch a glimpse of the glittering ocean or get a whiff of the sweet, salty ocean air?

It’s been incredibly de-stressing and stressful all at once. I’ve never been the kind to go with the wind and forget all I need to do. I’m a list-maker, an activity planner, a worrier, and a do-er but during these last few days I’ve done nothing but breathe in the air, wiggle my toes in the golden sand, and let the waves wash over me.

Simon the Seagull

My new friend, Simon the Seagull

The California Dreamin’ has finally ended

BECAUSE I’M HERE!

Only a few short days ago, the fiance and I packed up our belongings and kitty-cats, jumped in a Uhaul and drove through the desert to our final stop in the city of unending traffic, “I’m not just a waiter” waiters, and plentiful silicone boobies.

When you tell someone who hasn’t lived in a LA or really explored the city (those types tend to think LA is just the area around Disneyland and California Adventure) that you are moving to Los Angeles you get one of two responses:

1- “Oh geez, how are you going to deal with the god-awful traffic, fake people, bums, drought, densely packed neighborhoods, and high home prices?!”

or

2- “Oh wow! Good for you. What an adventure, good luck!”

Of course, I much prefer response #2. But, what is my answer to response #1?

Just look at the picture below:

Haphazard Notions - California Beach

Urban Decay Electric Palette + a little Tanya Burr love

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So, I’ve been absent on the blog. I’m writing practically everyday after work until bedtime, polishing up some spec pilot scripts to send off to a few screenwriting fellowships this month. I’m naturally an optimistic person, but I’m trying to not get my hopes up too much. I’m a newbie at screenwriting and I’m sure the talent pool applying to these fellowships is massive and filled with amazing writers.

However, April is my birthday month which means the fiance gave me MAKE UP because he knows me so well! And, what did he give? The amazing and brand new Urban Decay Electric Pressed Pigment Palette and I’M IN LOVE! I seriously debate every morning wearing a full-on crazy, colorful eye to work just because I love this palette so damn much.

 

20140430-212313.jpgI mean just look at these colors! Sorry for the iPhone photos, my regular camera was DEAD because I NEVER FRIGGIN CHARGE THE BATTERY. What is wrong with me? I either lose all my SD cards or I don’t charge the battery. Anyway, scroll down for more badly-lit photos of these pigments.

 

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Okay, this one isn’t badly lit. I think I had my camera when I took this picture. I used Urban Decay’s Naked 3 palette on the crease with L’Oreal Lineur Intense Felt Tip Liquid Eyeliner (which I’m pretty sure is a dupe of this Lancome liner). Then starting from the inner corner of my lower lid I smudged Revolt, Thrash, then layered a bit of Chaos on top of Thrash to create a more aquamarine type color.

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Okay, here we see the terribleness of using an iPhone to take close-up face shots at night in your bathroom. Here I used Urban Decay shadows in Scratch and Toasted in the crease, then on the eyelid I patted a thick coat of the Electric palette’s Chaos shadow. Finished off with a swipe of Maybelline’s Gel Eyeliner and Maybelline’s The Falsies Mascara.

20140430-212326.jpgI truly believe that everyone should give themselves a birthday present. So, I ordered three lip glosses from one of my favorite make up artists/youtuber Tanya Burr. They glosses are creamy and long-lasting with a sweet Vanilla-ish scent. I’m not much of a lip gloss girl but these babies have definitely changed my mind. Starting from the left are Champagne Toast, Vampire Kiss and Aurora.

Now off to hone my mad screenwriting skillz.

My favorite Blogger/Facialist/Amazingly Cool Lady has started a Youtube Channel

That’s right, who else could I be talking about? Of course, it is Caroline Hirons, the skincare goddess herself. Watch her first video below. I would STRONGLY recommend visiting her blog and reading it all, especially her cheat sheets on the side bar. Seriously, my skin feels so much better after I discovered all her advice via Pixwoo’s Body Talk Daily video with her. 

 

Now, who wants to fly me to the UK so I can sign up for a coveted spot when she does skin consultations? :)

OCC’s Primary Pack All-Star Mini Lip Tar Set – A Color Addict’s Dream

 

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I have a confession. Even though I’m a major make up addict who mercilessly empties her bank account for every new “it” product of the month… okay, it product of the week…. I haven’t ever tried the Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tars (or an OCC product for that matter). This has plagued me for months, years even. The Tars look so lovely but so intimidating. A tar? On my lips? Can I even apply it, let alone wear it out and about?

Well, the other day I saw Sephora run their ads for the new OCC All Star Mini Primary Pack and I thought, well, this is my chance. I’ll get the true red color I’m looking for, a chance to try out the “tar” formula and mix n’ match my colors like a true make up artist, all for only $29 (which includes a full-size lip brush).

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After swatching the colors on my arms and lips, which I regretfully forgot to take photos of because I was having fun with the formula and the opacity of the tars, I started to experiment. Above is the red color (NSFW) mixed with a bit of the yellow (Traffic) and the white (Feathered).

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After marveling at the shellac-like sheen upon my lips, I realized that this set is perfect for “ombre-ing” almost any color under the sun. Above is the same formula but with a little more of the white (Feathered) in the center.

 

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Next up, I mixed red (NSFW), a little blue (RX), and a smidgen of black (Tarred) focusing the darker pigment on the edges of my lips while dotting then blending a small dab of white (Feathered) in the center. If the lip brush doesn’t help blend the ombre effect as well as you’d like try rubbing your lips together softly till it meshes a bit better.

 

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Now, my fiance walked in when I was playing with the blue tones. As someone who truly doesn’t understand the fun, self-expression that I get from make up, he was completely flabbergasted by why I’d even create this ice blue look. “For fun!” I said when he asked. Why wouldn’t I want to look like I was going to a space age rave?

As you’ll probably guess, I mixed blue (RX) and white (Feathered), adding a bit more white to the center.

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Last, but not least, is my favorite and most unexpected combo. Using a bit of the leftover blue mixture, I added in yellow to created a nice blue-toned green which I applied to the entire lip. Then instead of white, I applied the yellow to the middle of the pout creating a warm to cool green ombre lip. Upon seeing my lips, my fiance proudly exclaimed that this would be great for a Poison Ivy Halloween or Cosplay look. Which I highly agree with.

Any cons??

As a first time OCC lip tar user, I felt the formula wasn’t near as tricky to worth with as I had heard. However, that said, I wish I would have had lip liner on with the looks. I’m sure many of you don’t need lip liner with this product but something about the formula just ran into every nook and cranny around my top and bottom lip. The wear time was really good, a few hours until the colors faded into more of a stained look but did almost wipe away completely when I ate.

All in all, I’m completely smitten and will be buying a few more of the more iconic OCC lip tar colors (Anime, Stalker, Grandma, Black Dahlia, etc.) and definitely buying the corresponding liner to the more “out there” colors. Have any of you tried OCC’s other lip tars or other make up products? I’d love to hear more reviews or thoughts about the brand!

 

Battle Royale: Mac Fix+ vs. Contact Solution to wet your eye shadow

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Top: Mac Fix+ Middle: Contact Solution Bottom: Dry brush

 

I used to think setting sprays or make up mixing mediums were a hoax along with most primers. It’s just a ploy to get you to buy more, I’d tell myself. But, like with so many other things I WAS WRONG! I’d die if I didn’t use Urban Decay’s All Nighter before a sweaty concert or wedding in the blazing hot sun. Seriously, I would probably get some melted eyeliner in my eye and die in a fiery crash while driving home. Setting spray not only saves your face but SAVES LIVES!

 

Now, that I’m done with the dramatics, I’ll move on to what this post is really about. MAC Fix+ vs. contact solution. I’d hear contact solution was a decent dupe for Fix+ and wanted to test it out. Now, you are probably wondering why I didn’t test water to intensify my eyeshadow. Well, simply put, I didn’t want to. Every time I’ve ever dampened my brush with water and then placed said brush on a pressed shadow, I’ve found that the shadow soaks up the water and hardens to a shiny patch of dried pigment. I’m not sure if my tap water is extra hard or has some kind of chemical in it that reacts badly with my eyeshadows (sort of a worrying thought, I suppose). Plus, I don’t do my make up in my bathroom and having a cup of fresh water by my make up ever morning would be ASKING for disaster. My cats are assholes and love to tip any cup over that they see. You are more than welcome to use water to create a wet, intense look with your eye shadows but I prefer to use a mixing medium.

 

Now onto the results. In the pictures, the top line is MAC Fix+ with Mac eyeshadow in Cranberry (one of my favorite shades), the second line is contact solution, and the third is plain old dry eyeshadow. With the first swipe the both the Fix+ and contact solution is a million times more pigmented and intense than the dry shadow which I had to continually build up with multiple layers to even show upon my alabaster arm skin. So far, so good. Both Fix+ and contact solution are awesomely awesome when mixed with shimmery eyeshadows. The contact solution definitely wins out as far as price and convenience goes. I always have a bottle of it around since I am nearly blind with my contacts.

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Same order, just smeared by my hand

 

Even after I gleefully tried to smear the eye shadow all over my arm the Fix+ and contact solution were holding pretty strong. However, out of sheer laziness, I learned that there was an advantage that Fix+ had over the contact solution. It has AMAZING staying power. Nearly 7 hours after applying and smearing the eye shadow the swatch mixed with Fix+ was still going strong. The contact solution-mix was visible but only just. The dry shadow was LONG GONE. So, I’d say if you have some MAC Fix+ use it and savor it for special occasions while rotating in some contact solution for convenience and to save your wallet. And, even cheaper if you dare risk the impurities that may be lurking in your tap water go ahead and use that too. However, I think you’ll be surprised at the difference even just switching to contact solution will make.

 

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Here is a picture of me trying to smile after visiting the dentist. I’m looking a little freaky with this lopsided grin.