AUGUST FAVORITES 2017

Hello frenz and welcome back! It's the end of August and that means it's time for a favorites list! I can't tell if this month flew by or if it took forever. Seriously, this month felt never ending but I'm still a little shocked that tomorrow is September. Anyways, I've had a lot of favorites this month, but I narrowed it down to some holy grail products I've this month. Let's jump right into this, shall we?!

First up is Benefit's POREfessional Primer. I actually just found out that this is considered a primer hahaha, well good, because that's what I've been using it as. My sample size is pretty much empty, I'm having to curl the tube and squeeze out product lol, but this primer is AAAA-MAZINGGG. I have huge pores on my nose and the tops of my cheeks, and this seriously fills them in and blurs them better than any other pore blurring product I've tried (and I've tried a ton). You can actually see it fill in your pores as soon as it's rubbed into the skin. It has a smell that I would call "cheap chocolate" haha, like those cheap chocolate quarters or something — but it's not a scent that turns me away. I actually quite like it! This is a little pricey, at a whopping (according to Sephora's website) $12.00 US (sample size) to $49.00 US (full size). I'm OBSESSED with this stuff, and plan on repurchasing this weekend! Maybe I can talk my boyfriend into buying me the full size lol…MAYBE.

Next up on the chopping block is Too Faced Shadow Insurance Eye Shadow Primer. Please excuse my veiny wrist and hand. They're gross, I know lol. I bought this product off of Wish (before they priced high end makeup accordingly lol). I can't remember the exact price I purchased this for, but I believe it was under $10! Looking at Sephora's website, it looks like the packaging on this product has changed, which I can believe because I purchased this like two years ago. I honestly can't tell differences between eye shadow primers other than their consistency. I don't buy nor test out too many eye primers, but I really love this primer for dark, smokey looks and for working with bright colors. It holds color incredibly well without creasing. I try not to use this on a daily basis because I know I'll have to repurchase at full price lol, which is a total of $20.00 US. I guess that's not too bad!

Onto one of the greatest drugstore finds, ELF High Definition Under Eye Setting Powder. It might be one of the best drugstore setting powders.It's very finely milled and you don't need too much, which is good because the pot it comes in is rather tiny. The old formula used to have a bit of sparkle in it, which is what I think turned a lot of people off to it, but the formula now is INCREDIBLE. I don't know how it does it, but it has this ability to blur your under eyes. I use a powder puff and just pat it into my skin (sometimes my whole face, lol). It sets your concealer so friggin' well, it doesn't budge AT ALL. Seriously, it takes a lot of rubbing to get my concealer off at the end of the day. I heard from a beauty YouTuber (I can't think of who), that it can be used as a dupe for the Laura Mercier Setting Powder. At $6.00 US, you can't get a better and more affordable under eye setting powder!

Speaking of concealer, I rediscovered Maybelline's Dream Lumi Highlighting Concealer and OH MY GOD GUYS, why did I ever stop using this?! The shade I have is in Radiant and holy crap, does it live up to its name. It's rather apricot-y when you first put it on the skin, but when you blend it out, it leaves your under eyes so bright and concealed (haha duh). I would say that this is a high coverage concealer. It covered up a huge zit on my cheek once so that's good enough for me. The only thing I wish was different is the tube it comes in. I always feel like these type of packages jip you out of product because it comes out through the brush, but it gives out more product than anyone would ever need. I dunno, am I the only one that thinks that? Anyways, this is a whopping $6.44 US at Wal-Mart (which is where I purchase 95% of my drugstore makeup, btw). You can't go wrong with trying this stuff out!

You didn't think I forgot about eye shadow, right? Good, because I didn't. Please excuse my wonky shaped arm lol I broke it when I was a kid and it didn't heal correctly. Anyways, Maybelline's The Nudes palette is literally my holy grail. I use this palette every single day. I live and breathe for this palette. I bought this a little after it dropped a few years ago, and to be honest, I didn't like it at first.

It's definitely one of those palettes that needs to be broken in. The top layer, for some reason, doesn't have a lot of pigment, but once you get past that, HOLY COW. They are so pigmented and blend like a breeze. There's also no fallout, even with the darkest shades! I actually use the medium brown shade to fill in my brows! If I have wear any brown or neutral eye look, there's a 100% chance I used this palette. For being a $10.00 US drugstore palette, I would say it's pretty damn good and it's one of my holy grail products.

Okay, let's talk about foundation. Having fair, oily skin with huge pores and dry patches makes it really hard for me to find a good foundation. I'm super picky —they need to be demi-matte, medium to full coverage and not be too light or too dark (duh). You'd be surprised how hard it is for me to find the correct shade lol, but again, ELF has outdone themselves with their Flawless Finish Foundation (with SPF 15). This foundation has everything I could ever want, including being only $6.00 US! This foundation has the ability to be full coverage, but still look like your skin! It looks a little wonky in the swatch, but once it's blended well and dries, it lives up to the adjective "flawless."

The only thing I would say is you shouldn't over apply with this because it will turn cakey…fast. It also has a floral-ish scent. I don't know why I want to say it smells like peonies because I don't know what the fluff those smell like, but it's the first thing to come to mind when I smell this. For someone who can't stand floral smells, I can handle this scent. It's not too strong and it's rather refreshing! If your skin is sensitive to scents, I wouldn't recommend you use this, but if not, go out and buy it. You won't be disappointed!

Two more products left, guys, and both being my favorite part of doing makeup. I recently rediscovered Anastasia Beverly Hills' Powder Contour Kit. I forgot how fabulous this kit was! This is another product I bought off of Wish, most likely under $20 (can't be sure). It came broken (so sad), but it's still very usable. I love how easy these are to blend. They're smooth and not patchy at all. For being the medium to light kit, I would say that these are still way too dark and warm for me, so it definitely helps to go in with less product and a light hand. I'm not sure why I stopped using this but it's definitely back in my good graces. I can't believe I got this so cheap when it's $40.00 US at Sephora. I definitely think it is worth the money anyhow and chances are, I'll repurchase the refill pans.

Last, but certainly not least, is my holy grail highlighter – L'Oreal True Match Lumi Powder Glow Illuminator. I have a few highlighters that I think are gorgeous, but I can't help but always reach for this one. I'm one that LOVES a blinding highlight, and that's exactly what this one does. I use the whitest shade the most, but they're all so gorgeous. They're incredibly pigmented (more in person than through camera) and they don't accentuate skin texture. It has some sparkle in it, but not enough to bother me. I bought this at CVS for $12.99 US and it was so worth it. I've had it for over a year now and not even close to hitting pan. 10/10 for L'Oreal on this highlighter!

It was hard not to add more products to this list, but we would be here all night. What were some of your favorites this month? I'd love to hear about 'em! Until next time, XO.

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Rimmel London Stay Matte Liquid Lipstick Review

Hello frenz and happy Monday! First, off let me say how sorry I am about the absence of posts last week. I could lie and say I had a lot going on, but the truth is that I wasn't in the mood to blog. I've been feeling a little down about my blog recently and that's why I've shied away. But good news! I'm back with some awesome products to talk about! I went shopping sometime last week and picked up some new makeup and today, I want to talk about the Rimmel Stay Matte Liquid Lipsticks. Are you excited? I'm excited! Let's get right into this, shall we?!

It seems like every makeup brand now has their own liquid lipstick, whether it be matte or not so much. I found Rimmel's Stay Matte liquid lipstick at Wal-Mart and it was priced at $4.97. I've honestly never tried any liquid lipstick (I'm a noob to new things), and I figured this one was inexpensive enough that I might give it a go, and if I didn't like it, then it would only be $5 down the drain. You get .21 fluid ounces per tube and it is good for two years.

Unfortunately, this product is not cruelty-free…

This liquid lipstick line has 14 shades, ranging from brown nudes, pink nudes and some darker and fun colors. I picked up the shade Mocha, which is a medium brown nude shade. I always get nervous when purchasing nude lip colors because it could go one of two ways; either I look like a walking corpse or I look insane. My skin tone is pretty fair with a pink undertone, so it's very difficult to find any brown nude that flatters my skin. I hoped for a miracle when picking up this shade.

Rimmel claims that this product will give you bold color with just one stroke, that it is kiss proof, transfer proof, water proof, and that it is lightweight with a velvety matte finish. If you follow me on Instagram, you saw the initial swatch of this product last week on my story.

It's very pigmented and not streaky, even with one quick swipe. It comes with a pointed sponge applicator, which is great because it ensure that you get a decent amount of product, instead of having to dip into the tube often.

It has a faint sweet smell, reminiscent of the scent from the Rimmel Long Lasting Lipstick line. It dries completely matte and is completely budge and transfer proof (at least upon swatching). It doesn't take long to dry, maybe a minute and a half tops.

When applying to the lips, it is very soft and creamy. You don't need to constantly dip into the product and it doesn't dry instantly, so you're able to layer without it getting cakey or patchy. It's not extremely lightweight, but it's not so heavy that you feel like you can't move your lips. It doesn't get too sticky and there's no pulling on your lips as it dries to a matte finish.

The initial swipe of the lips with my finger after drying proved this lipstick to be smudge and transfer proof. I also kissed my dog to test the claim of this product being kiss proof, and indeed, it is. Also, the color is gorgeous. It was surprisingly the perfect brown nude for me! (peep the selfie for some lipstick action)

I wore this product for over eight hours. It does become a little drying on your lips as the day goes on. I'm one of those people that constantly licks their lips and the corner of their mouths, so I was able to notice the drying feeling almost instantly. However, I was able to lick my lips without this product moving or fading whatsoever.

I decided halfway through the day to apply a lip gloss on top of it. I wanted to see how it worked with other products laying on top. It stayed well with the gloss and even stayed put when the gloss was removed. I was able to tell a bit of fading after the gloss was removed, but nothing that called for reapplication. Even throughout eating and drinking, this product didn't move a bit nor did the color fade.

By the end of the day, you could tell that the color faded just a smidge and that the corners of my mouth were completely without product (which I expected to be the case anyways). There wasn't noticeable cracking or patchiness. It stayed put suprisngly well throughout daily activities.

I hate wearing lip color for the main reason that it never stays put and I constantly have to reapply, but this product was not like that at all. I was able to apply it once and forget about it. I even checked on it at random parts of the day to see if there was any fading or cracking, but it looked just as perfect as it did after the initial application!

All in all, I give this product a 10/10. For being $5 from the drugstore, this product is really one of the best. I've always liked Rimmel, especially their Stay Matte line. Their products keep getting better and better. I can't wait to pick up more shades to try! What are your favorite liquid lipstick brands? I'd love to hear about 'em!

Why I Began Special Effects Makeup

Hello frenz! Welcome back! You might notice that things look a little different here on my blog, as well on my other social media accounts. I’ve recently started doing special effects makeup, and it turns out that I’m rather decent at it. I enjoy doing it so much that I’ve shied away from my blog for a little while. When I started blogging, I thought that I wanted to be this magnificent writer, but some thoughts have changed. Don’t get me wrong, I still LOVE to write…but I also LOVE doing makeup. But I’ve been thinking, why choose between two passions when I can do them both? So here it is, my new and improved blog…all about SFX makeup. For my readers who prefer my serious, article-type posts, I will still post those as a way to get my thoughts out, but the bulk of my content will be about SFX makeup. I’ve been told to create a YouTube channel for my looks, but I’m not too good with cameras, editing and talking. I’m better with written words and I only think it’s fair to give you all the best of my content.

First off, I want to say that I am in NO WAY a professional makeup artist. I do makeup for fun and all of the opinions expressed here on out are based off of my own experiences. If you’re looking for professional makeup advice, you’ve come to the wrong place, my dear. With that being said, I’ve been doing makeup since I was very young. It started with toy makeup as a baby nugget and progressed to spending all of my hard earned money at Sephora. I’ve been practicing my skills for some time now, and I’ve just now gotten to the point where I can say, with confidence, that I am good at makeup. Practice most certainly makes perfect, and with practice comes understanding. When you’ve played and practiced with makeup for so long, you begin to understand its use. It’s like an art — you begin to understand highlights and shadows and what colors flatter certain skin tones and eye colors. That’s when it starts to get fun.

I’ve always had a love for horror and gore. The first horror movie I ever watched was The Nightmare on Elm Street when I was really young. I was hooked after that. I enjoy the rush of being scared. I enjoy watching a bloody masterpiece in someone’s mind come to life. Call me weird, call me crazy, but it’s something I’ve always been fascinated with. I’ve always had an appreciation for art, too, but the problem with that is I’m not very artistic. I can’t draw for shit but I can color the shit out of a coloring book. Years ago, my sister introduced me to Glam and Gore on YouTube. I had found a new appreciation for special effects art. I would watch in awe as she created stunningly bloody looks, knowing that I would never be able to create it due to the lack of artistry in my veins. I became a bystander to the very thing I loved.

Thinking I could never do it made me never want to try. I thought I needed all of these products and a boatload of cash to be able to create these looks. But there was one day where I just said, fuck it, I’m gonna try. I broke out the eye shadow palettes and went to town. I was surprised with how natural it came to me. I’ve never been good at art, so how was I good at this? I found my new hobby and passion that day. Now fast forward three weeks — I’m shocked by my progression. Three weeks of practice has me creating looks that I never dreamed of being able to create. Not only have I impressed myself, but the public support has been overwhelming. I can’t figure out why I waited this long to do what I love, but I’m happy I started when I did.

I hope you enjoyed my little background story. If you’re interested in doing SFX, dramatic/glam, or even everyday makeup looks, my advice is to just do it. Try it and see what you’re able to create. Your undiscovered skills might shock you.

spooky

Liebster Award Nomination 2017 & My Nominees

Hello frenz and welcome back! This post is extra special and near & dear to my heart. I was nominated by the lovely Rena for the Liebster Award! For those of you who aren’t familiar with what that is, it’s an award for bloggers. No trophy involved, just recognition and support for your blog. It’s a big deal for me, because I’ve literally never been nominated for anything. I once won a 3rd place Track and Field award in elementary school, but that’s about the extent of my award winning abilities. If you haven’t, go check out Rena’s blog. She’s a cat loving personal blogger who writes about some pretty relatable stuff – plus she’s super sweet, so give her blog a read. Now, without further adieu, let’s get into this thing! 

Rena’s questions to me are as follows, with my answers. I hope you enjoy getting to know a little more about me!

1. What is your go-to dressed up outfit? Every time you want to look done up, what do you tend to do?
Well, let’s address the outfit portion — I usually where anything that I feel comfortable and confident in. It really depends on my mood. Sometimes I want to wear a dress, and other times leggings and a cute top can suffice as “dressed up”. Don’t judge — comfortable can also be dressy. As for what I do to look done up, I definitely gotta fill in these sparse brows and add a sharp as shit winged liner.

2. What is the last book you read?
I’m one of those people that read half a book and then put it down and start another one. I’m currently in the middle of reading three different books, but the actual last one would be Salem Falls by Jodi Picoult. This book caught my eye on Walmart’s book shelf AGES ago, mainly because it had Salem in the name. I hardly remember what it’s about but I know I really enjoyed it. Perhaps I’ll make it the fourth book in my ongoing reading frenzy.

3. Why did you choose the blog platform you are on?
Mainly because I wanted a site where I was able to gain followers straight from the platform. Plus, I’ve heard very good things about WordPress. I honestly don’t think I’ll ever transfer platforms. WordPress is where it’s at for me.

4. What is one goal you have accomplished this year that you are really proud of?
Finding what I want to do in life. It’s not so much of a goal I had, but I’m really happy that I found my calling this year. I know I want to write for a living, and in learning that, it’s completely changed my outlook on the future.

5. What hair product would you rather not live without?
Leave-in conditioner. My hair has a nice, natural texture to it. I can live without styling it, but I definitely need it to be hydrated so it doesn’t turn into broom bristles.

6. What methods do you use to plan your blog posts?
I take mental notes most of the time. I get an idea and outline it in my head. If it’s a more complicated post that requires research and planning, I free write on my phone just to get my ideas out. Then I paste it as a draft in WordPress, get on my laptop and paste it into a Word document for edit. 90% of the time, I plan and upload posts from my iPhone.

7. What is one beauty trend you’re afraid to try but really want to?
Bright colored hair. I once dyed my platinum blonde hair a non-permanent blue and it stained my hair. I spent countless nights bleaching my hair to get it out, leaving it dry and lifeless. I love the look of ombre’d colored hair and I would kill to have it, but I’m way too apprehensive due to a bad experience.

8. Do you prefer sweet or salty snacks?
It ultimately depends on my mood. Sometimes I have a hankering for chocolate that can only be satisfied by eating four bags of M&Ms. And then other times, I can eat 12 bags of potato chips like it’s nothing. I honestly don’t snack too often, but the type of snack I want is usually reliant on my mood.

9. What is one song you can’t stop listening to at the moment?
I don’t have one specific song as I do one specific artist. I went full 2006 emo kid and listened to My Chemical Romance for a month. Now I’m on a Melanie Martinez kick. I give it a few days until I’m jamming to Cannibal Corpse for weeks.

10. Do you have a favorite magazine and why?
I might be in my 20s, but I’m still a huge fan of Seventeen magazine. They have a lot of nice tips and trends — plus they always have vibrant colors which usually catch my eye. Their articles/stories are also very well written and their magazine is nicely put together.

11. What is one piece of advice you would give a first-time blogger?
Just do it. You might feel silly or like a noob, but the blogging community is extremely supportive of all types of blogs. I thought since I didn’t write about makeup or beauty that there wasn’t going to be a place for me in the blogging world, but the reactions to my posts are just the opposite. I have tons of blogger friends. I honestly have more online friends than I do in real life. Blogging is a commitment, but if you’re truly passionate about it, you will love every second of it. Just put yourself out there and go for it.

Now that you learned a little about me, it’s time for my nominations! Since Rena nominated me, I’ve been constantly thinking of who I want to nominate. There’s this rule about only nominating blogs with “200 followers or less”, but I feel weird about asking someone or creeping on their blog. So I’m going to nominate some of my favorite bloggers that really need some love and recognition.

Mystic Mogwai – I found this girl on Twitter and she’s so incredible. I love her style and her blog name is ingenious. She’s not one specific type of blogger, which is why I love her blog so much. She’s chatty and her blogs are fun to read!

Natural Hazards and More – This girl deserves so much recognition for her ongoing battle of informing the internet world on science. Her blogs are extremely important to the future of the planet.

Ditzy D Blog  – She writes about her self journey through anxiety and depression in such a beautifully honest way. Her blog deserves so much recognition.

The Emma Lifestyle – She’s a lifestyle blogger who writes about everything — from beauty products to book reviews to everyday life. She’s a sweetheart and I really enjoy her blog.

Howling Libraries – I really love book bloggers. Although I’m not currently too much of a reader, I enjoy reading book reviews. She writes really solid reviews, so why not go give her blog a read?

Black Tulip Beauty – And last, but certainly not least, is one of my FAVORITE beauty bloggers out there — mainly because she’s a total babe and I wish I could jack her style. She writes incredible product reviews and also has sunflower yellow hair!? She’s the total package when it comes to beauty bloggers.

Below are the questions for my nominees, if you choose to accept! Have fun!

1. If you could be any animal, which would you be? Why?

2. What is your holy grail beauty product and why?

3. What is the one thing you want most out of life?

4. How do you come up with ideas for blog posts?

5. Who is your biggest role model? Why?

6. If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

7. What is your dream job?

8. Do you think you would survive in a zombie apocalypse? Why or why not?

9. What are you most confident about?

10. What’s your favorite movie and why?

Goals for the Rest of 2017

Hello frenz! Welcome back to whatever this blog has come to. I've been bored with my blog lately, so I thought about doing something a little different. I've seen these done before and I think it's fabulous to share goals with likeminded individuals. I've tried to keep this post upbeat, but to be honest, I haven't been so positive lately. So here goes – my goal list for the rest of 2017.

GET A JOB
I've been unemployed since March, so that makes a total of almost five months now. I was planning to join the Air Force, but realized that I was leaving too much behind (also I'm too old to be tricked by military schemes). I put that goal behind me and now I have another – to find a job. Not only do I need one to pay my bills and buy food, but I'm tired of not working. Every day since losing my job has turned into a blur and I'm ready to be productive again.

SAVE MONEY
I really don't want to live in Pennsylvania anymore. It's poor and highly taxed. The weather sucks and my town should be known as Drug and Crime Central. By getting a decent (and steady) paycheck from accomplishing Goal #1, I hope to be able to start saving enough money to get the hell out of here within the next two years.

GAIN A FOLLOWING
I want to write for a living, I've known that for some time now. I want to be a full time writer or even a full time blogger at some point. I want to get my blog out there and create a name for myself. I need to start creating my empire.

LIVE STRESS FREE
I don't think I've ever had this amount of stress in my life. I have nervous breakdowns almost every day, mostly due to lack of money. I can't afford things I want and need. I want to live stress free again. I want to be able to enjoy life and wake up happy.

BEGIN SFX MAKEUP
This is something I've wanted to do for some time, but haven't had the money or want to invest the time in. But Halloween is coming up and you best believe I want to scare all the kiddos on the block this year.

MAINTAIN A HEALTHY LIFE
Since money has been so tight recently, I've only been eating once a day and skipping the gym to conserve gas. I need to get back into the routine of working out regularly and eating enough so I don't waste away into nothing. It's easier said than done when you have $-33 to your name.

TAKE ANOTHER TRIP TO FL
My trip to Florida at the beginning of July was so incredible. Seeing and spending time with my family meant so much to me. I want to make it into a regular visit.

READ MORE
I really do enjoy reading, but I lack the interest to do anything other than nap (thanks depression). I also find myself reading the words but daydreaming about something else, which leads me to reading the same paragraph ten times. I have so many books but have only read maybe five of them. I'd like to read them all and then add to my collection.

BUY MORE MAKEUP PRODUCTS
It sounds a little materialistic but I'm a sucker when it comes to makeup. I watch and read tons of reviews on new products and I want them all…but lack the dough to get them. I haven't purchased any new makeup in at least a year, and it's breaking my heart.

GIVE GIFTS AT CHRISTMAS
Last Christmas was horrible. I wasn't able to get anything for anyone and it made me feel so low. Christmas is my second favorite holiday and I love giving to others. I want to be able to give to everyone I can this year, and even to the less fortunate. I miss having the means to be generous.

BE GENUINELY HAPPY
I haven't been happy in such a long time, and I really miss the feeling of enjoying life. I need to get that feeling back for my own sanity.

I'm keeping this list as my own little time capsule of things I want to accomplish. I hope to look back in January 2018 to have accomplished all of these and then some. Here's to my future endeavors.

23 Things I’ve Learned in 23 Years

I’ve been on this planet for 23 years now. That’s 8,359 days and 201,480 hours. Within that time, I’ve learned some things about myself and my life, as most do when they grow older. Some things take a longer time to learn because you need to experience self growth, while others are learned in an instant. Below are 23 things I’ve learned in 23 years — things I wish I could tell younger me.

1. Perseverence is Key
Hard work really does pay off. Don’t give up.

2. Do What You Love
Even if it’s a hobby like painting yard gnomes, do it any chance you get. You deserve to have a joyous passion.

3. Blood Doesn’t Mean Family
It’s all about how you’re treated. My boyfriend’s family is more of mine than my own…because they treat me like family. See how that works? Don’t feel obligated to stick by someone just because of blood relation. You don’t need that negativity and stress in your life.

4. Nothing Lasts Forever
Whatever you’re going through, it won’t last forever. Keep pushing through the hard times and keep having good times. It all gets better.

5. Friends Come & Friends Go
Your best friend when your 15 might not be your best friend later in life. You might keep in touch and catch up once in a blue moon, but it might not ever be like it was. And that’s okay.

6. Less is More
I’ve been living on my own for three years, I’ve just now begun to realize how much stuff I actually own…and it’s driving me to insanity. Don’t clutter your space because you really want a turtle statue that you have no place for.

7. Prepare, Prepare, Prepare
Mentally prepare for events or things that make you anxious or scared. It makes the experience less traumatic.

8. Read
Read the newspaper. Read about current events. Read everything you can. Knowledge is power.

9. Drink in Moderation
Drinking way over your limit, being sick that night and/or the next morning, along with a headache and a craving for McDonald’s? No, thanks.

10. Wear Whatever You Want
Honestly, life is too short to care what someone else thinks.

11. Stop Comparing Yourself
You’re YOU for a reason — you don’t need to be like anyone else. Become comfortable with yourself. Self love shines through.

12. Exercise More
Relieve your stress and lose some weight in the process.

13. Challenge Yourself
Set goals for yourself and force yourself to get there. Future you will thank you. 

14. Follow Your Dreams
We all take a different path sometimes because we’re not 100% sure of what we want. But when you come to that great realization, chase that dream. You can do anything you set your mind to.

15. Stop Feeling Bad for Being Lost
So you don’t know where to go or what to do in life? Stop feeling bad for it. There are people who seemingly have it all that are just as lost as you are. 

16. Have a Backbone
Stand up for what you believe in. Don’t take shit from anyone.

18. Stop Eating Fast Food
Cooking is fun and you can choose what goes into your food. Fast food makes you feel like garbage. You don’t deserve to feel like garbage.

19. Be Yourself
Stay true to who you are. Don’t lose yourself in the mindless trends or the competitive nature of life.

20. Learn About Your Planet
Grow familiar with where you live and the nature surrounding you. Mother Earth is a beautiful planet. Take care of it.

21. Plan and Prioritize
Plan out everything and learn to prioritize your life. Routines and plans can save you from chaos.

22. Love
Fall in love. No matter what you think, you will be accepted by another human. Stop being scared of that.

23. Build Your Empire
No matter what you have set for your life, work and build it. Be a boss. 

Is Social Media a Popularity Contest?

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Ah, social media, the time waster and meme maker. The internet and social media are incredible technologies. We can create content, whether it be a video, writing, artwork, whatever you’re into — we create it and we’re able to share it with anyone in any part of the world at any time. There are thousands, if not millions, of creators trying hard to be noticed on social media, through the vast sea of like-minded internet peers. We want our content to be seen and heard by everyone. It’s almost like high school, trying to be noticed by the cute senior with the car. It’s a popularity contest based solely off of follows and likes from total strangers.

Between Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and other social media platforms, there are millions of people trying to get noticed; either by a company, record label or just likes on a picture. When did numbers begin to validate our existences? I remember a time when I would delete pictures off of Instagram or Facebook if they didn’t get “enough” likes. I was so wrapped up in the validation of perfect strangers that I lost track of who I was in real life. I was trying to portray a version of myself on the internet; a person that someone would like — and for what? Follows and likes. Since coming out of the “it’s all about numbers” phase, I’ve been able to be one of the more honest folks on the internet. I stopped caring about the numbers because it doesn’t define me or my content. If they like me, they’ll follow me. If not, oh well.

Recently, I’ve become increasingly aware of creators who have, let’s say, 14k Twitter followers, but complain that they only have 40 blog or video views. It’s not about having a great number of followers; it’s about having an audience, people who like what you create and genuinely want to read/listen. I can’t figure out why so many creators take so much time to gain unengaging and, ultimately, fake followers, when they could be producing a potential groundbreaking masterpiece. Not everyone is going to like what you produce, just like you may not like what someone else produces. We all have our likes and dislikes, and you can’t be upset when someone doesn’t necessarily like what you create. For example, I’m not going to follow a blog that has a niche in childcare when I don’t have kids. My follow won’t matter if I’m not reading and engaging with the creator.

We need to stop getting caught up in false validation and get back to creating unique and incredible content. As a creator, I enjoy writing. It gives me a creative way to get my thoughts out of my head and onto a virtual notepad. I started a blog because I wanted to share my thoughts and my seemingly different opinions. I wanted to have a voice in this world and maybe even make a difference. I want readers to relate to my thoughts, and maybe take something away from my experiences to better themselves. I put hard work into my posts. I do the research when necessary. I revise the same sentence and paragraph a million times before I’m satisfied with the way it sounds. I get joy out of creating my little space on the internet.

“I like to do it. If someone doesn’t like it, they don’t have to read it.”

Social media can be a gift to creators who really want to make something out of their passions. It’s no longer a popularity contest when you care less about the numbers and more about the real-life person behind that follow or like button.

To all of my readers and followers, thank you for reading. You all mean the world to me and you make my little space on the internet radiate with light. I wish you all the very best.

rl

[Photo Credit: Pixabay]