LIFE UPDATE: New Job, Life Plans, Moving?

Hello frenz and Happy Humpdaayyy! This was supposed to be Monday’s post, but better late than never! If you follow me on Twitter, then you pretty much know the things that have been going on in my life — and if you’re not following me, click here and give me a follow…it’s a fun place to be! I haven’t gone into full details on the things that have been going on in my life behind the scenes, so here I am with my large iced coffee and Sk8r Boi playing on Pandora to bring you the latest deets on my life.

So when I wrote one of my first blog posts waayyy back in April (I’m in disbelief that it’s almost the end of August), I might’ve mentioned once or twice or maybe a thousand times that I’m unemployed. To keep a long story short, I’ll briefly explain (or you can read that post here). I basically got laid off without a recall, meaning they fired me but told me it was a lay off. Whatever, I hated that job anyways and the money was complete garbage. But I am proud to say that after an entire summer of searching for a job, while also going back and forth about enlisting in the military, I finally landed a job…but not just any job…A GOOD PAYING JOB.

You’re looking at a brand new Customer Service Agent! I will be working for a company that is new to my town and is just starting up. From what I’ve been told about the job description, I will be handling inbound calls to help small business owners with Quickbooks, which I think is a program that helps to budget money (I’m a noob & should probably do my research). I have a six week long training to complete that doesn’t start until September 5th, which is perfect because it gives me enough time to get posts and makeup looks scheduled!

I’m mostly excited for this job because:
A. the pay is excellent!
B. it’s full time!
C. because I’ll finally be able to break out of home health care!
It’s not that I don’t like home health care. I mean, it was a fairly easy job and you can get paid a decent wage with experience, but all of the agencies I’ve worked with completely turned me off from the field. It’s so refreshing to have a different field of work give me a chance with what little customer service experience I have!

So since landing this job, I’ve been doing some major life planning. I’ve been really into makeup for some time (as you can obviously tell lol), and I really think I want to turn it into more than just a hobby. I’ve been trying to get a job at Sephora for FOREVER, and they just recently called me for an interview, but I already landed a job that offers a higher wage and more hours. More money, more makeup is how I look at it.

My dreams of working at Sephora might have died, but I still have this blog and my Instagram. What I really want, and what I plan on doing is basically work two jobs; one being my 9-5 day job, and the other being makeup/blogging. I know it’ll be a lot of work and take a lot of time, but let’s be honest, I don’t have much of a social life away from my dog, sister and boyfriend.

Having a job with a decent wage brings about sooo many opporunities. My boyfriend and I realllllllyyyy want to leave Pennsylvania. It’s probably the worst place to live; 12/10 would not recommend. So having more money leads to saving more money which, in turn, leads to the possibility of moving. We’ve made a goal to have enough saved up within the next two years to leave this shit hole and never look back. There are so many opportunities elsewhere, especially for my goals in life. There’s something about where I live now that makes me feel so small. Maybe it’s the drugs, maybe it’s the people who spend their entire lives on welfare, but I need to get out of here for my own sanity.

I don’t have the most interesting life. I’m a pretty big loner with an obsession with makeup, but I thought it would be nice to give you all the deets on my life. Make sure you stay tuned for Friday’s post – it’s gonna be a scream!
rl

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BATTLE OF THE PALETTES: W7 Lightly Toasted vs. Joly NK1

Hello frenz and Happy Friday! I hope you all had a wonderful week! I can't believe it's Friday already! I'm not sure where these days are going, but today is going to be fun because we're going to be talking about eye shadow palettes! I have about 12 palettes currently, some I use frequently and then there are some that I forget I even have (I can't be the only one). Today I will be talking about two palettes by two brands that don't have too much publicity…so let's just jump right into this, shall we?!

In one corner, weighing a whopping three grams with an expiration of five years is the Joly NK1 palette. I purchased this palette off of Amazon about two years ago. The colors were insanely similar to the Urban Decay Naked palette, and I thought it would be a possible dupe.

In the other corner, coming in at a whopping 15.6 grams and an expiration of 18 months is the W7 In The Buff: Lightly Toasted palette (ain't that a mouthful).

I purchased this palette around the same time that I purchased the NK1 palette, again, hoping it would be a dupe for UD Naked. Do you see an ongoing theme here? I can't tell you for sure if either of these palettes are dupes for UD Naked because I've never owned it, nor have I ever swatched it, but the shades look very similar.

So in preparation for this post, I did some research on both of these palettes. When I looked up the brand Joly on Google, I found the brand's website…which is rather sketchy, if you ask me. They don't have very many products, which I thought was a bit odd.

They have three eye shadow palettes; NK1, NK2 and NK3, which I'm assuming are supposed to be similar to the UD Naked line. They have a set of brushes, along with a brush stand and some powder puffs. When going to their about page, they don't specify anything about the company or the makeup they sell on their site…instead they talk about baby care products?

The whole site was incredibly confusing and gave zero insight into what the company is and what they do. They list that they are based out of California, but then list another address out of China. I won't even begin to tell you about their description of the product, because it was an absolute mess and was probably written by someone with less than half a brain stem. It also says to keep away from contact with eyes…but it's eye shadow so I'm confused???

Upon doing further research on this company and its products, I found absolutely nothing, which is really bizarre to me. If they are selling enough products to be at the top when you search on Amazon, then why isn't there more information about them? Am I just looking in the wrong place?

W7 is a popular brand in the UK, while also having an online store for the States. They have a vegan line, as well as hella palettes to choose from, along with other products like setting powder, foundation, eyeliner and whatever else your little heart desires. At least this brand's website seems a lot more legit that Joly!

The Lightly Toasted palette has 12 colors, ranging from nudes to coppers to golds. There are two matte shades, with the rest being shimmery and metallic. W7 also claims that the colors are highly pigmented with little fallout and they're not prone to creasing. Well, we're just going to put that to the test.

Now first off, these palettes aren't exact matches. A few of the shades are darker or lighter or more metallic than the latter, but all in all, they're seemingly similar palettes.

NK1 doesn't have shade names listed in or on the packaging, whereas Lightly Toasted has them listed on the back. If you're anything like me, you love your shade names — ten points to Lightly Toasted.

My arm isn't long enough to swatch 24 colors, so I split the swatches up into four each, going from left to right in the palettes.

As you can see, the beginning four nude shades hardly have any pigmentation from either palette, so I wasn't too impressed and was concerned about the pigmentation on the eyes. The NK1 palette is a lot creamier to the touch than Lightly Toasted. With Lightly Toasted, you really had to press hard to get product, and the product you did get had very little pigment.

You can see with the darker shades that they are highly pigmented for both palettes, although they still aren't exact matches for one another. Lightly Toasted has more sparkle in the shades, whereas NK1 has more of a metallic sheen.

When applying to the eyes, I find that the creaminess of NK1 gives it the ability to blend out seamlessly, without completely blending away. It also left fall out, but not enough to be bothered by it. Lighlty Toasted wasn't patchy when applied to the eyes, but it was a bitch and a half to blend, especially the darker colors. The metallic colors weren't as metallic as the NK1 shades and the two darker shades in Lightly Toasted (Up in Smoke and Dawn) have EXTREME sparkle to them. So when I tried to smoke out my look a little bit with the black shade, the sparkle and uneasiness to blend made those shades hard to work with.

Below is the look that I created using both of these palettes. The camera captured the colors beautifully. Can you spot the differences?

W7 claims that Lightly Toasted has little fall out, so at least I knew what I was getting myself into. What was most annoying about the fallout was that it was really only present on the darker shades, which were the most pigmented; leaving the process of wiping away the fallout a pain in the ass. It would just smudge and the color wouldn't budge (haha I made a rhyme). The creaminess of the NK1 palette causes the shadow to break and crumble, so I definitely had to use a lighter hand when dipping into those shades.

I wore these shadows all day (like 8 hours) to give you guys an accurate review of their wear. Today was a hot one – though I rarely was outside, I could still feel my skin build up more oil under my foundation. These shadows were really put to the test.

On the NK1 eye, you can see that the metallic sheen has worn off almost completely. Although the picture gives this look better justice, in person, you can see that the outer and darker shades have starting to slide a bit into the crease with lost pigmentation.

Lightly Toasted is still going strong. The metallic shade has hardly lost its sheen, although you can tell that awful blending job on my outer V with Up in Smoke (I told you they're hard to blend!)

These weren't the worst palettes I've ever used. Most of the colors have decent pigmentation and the formula of both weren't terrible, although I prefer the creaminess of the NK1. They're not something I think

I would use for everyday looks. I wish that there were more matte shades in these palettes. I love shimmer and metallics but it's hard to work with almost all shimmer shades. NK1 went on so pigmented and smooth — I really wish that pigmentation would've lasted throughout the day.

If I had to choose one to go with, I would favor Lightly Toasted. Although I wish they were creamier and had better pigmentation in their nude shades, I really like that the shadows lasted all day without creasing or smudging. It's a really decent palette for only $12.95 and I can't wait to try more from W7! I don't want to shit on the Joly brand because this is the only thing I've tried from them, but I really wish their website made more sense. Their palette isn't horrible, but there's very little information available about it which drives me a little bonkers.

I know this post was long, but I had a lot to say about these palettes. What good is having a makeup blog if you're not going to write detailed reviews? I had a lot of fun using these shades and doing the research to put this post together — let me know in the comments if you'd like to see more Battle Of series! What are some of your favorite eye shadow palettes? I'd love to hear about 'em!

SFX MAKEUP TIPS: Reference Pictures

Hello, frenz and happy Monday! I hope you all had a fantastic weekend. I took a little break from makeup this weekend to heal my poor, dry facial skin. The cocoa butter has yet again saved the day and returned my skin to its regular, moisturized state. Anyway, today's post is all about my favorite type of makeup…that's right, we're gonna be talking about special effects makeup! Let's jump right into this, shall we?

I've been doing special effects makeup for about three weeks, maybe a little longer. I've definitely progressed since my first go at it and I've learned certain things along the way. One of the most important things I've learned is using reference pictures to bring your look to life. There's one specific look that I think of when I talk about referencing, and that's my third-eyed gypsy look that I created a few weekends ago (or maybe sooner, I don't know, I'm terrible with time). 

What you don't know about that look is that the one I posted on Instagram was the second rendition. The original look was thrown together in about an hour…and looks nothing like the version that took me two hours, just on the eye alone.

image1 (3)

If you look at these pictures side by side, you can obviously tell which one is better. You can see on the first one there is absolutely no shading and highlighting. The pupil and iris itself look completely fake. There is no tear duct detail. There is no illusion of the eye actually being a part of my forehead. The funny thing about the first one is that I was actually planning on that being the final look! But I couldn't do it — I didn't have it in me to call that wimpy, pathetic looking eye the final product. I scratched the idea completely.

My future mother-in-law tagged me in an article a few days later about a girl who does illusion makeup. I will link it here because this girl is seriously phenomenal at SFX and illusions. Anywhoo, as I was scrolling through, I saw this look that she created of eyes all over her face.

As you can see, the details are immaculate and the eyes look so incredibly real. That's when I knew I had to do the third-eyed gypsy makeup over again. And that's when a new skill was formed.

What I learned from this is that you must have something to go off of, especially if you're a beginner. I saved the picture and studied it. I referenced it throughout the entire process of creating my own eye. Now, obviously, I didn't copy it completely. Chances are she used entirely different products than I, and I don't have the skill that she has. But the point is that referencing can make all the difference. I referenced the shading on the whites of her eyes. I referenced the shading around the outer eye to make it appear circular and to give the illusion of it being a part of my face. It turned into something I never in a million years thought I could do. I've been using reference pictures ever since, and it has progressed my SFX skill to the high heavens.

You have to remember that makeup is an art. In art classes, pictures are referenced and recreated. It's the same with SFX makeup or even every day makeup. If you're really trying to get into SFX makeup but can't quite get the hang of it, try studying and referencing. And hey, even if you're not into makeup, you can always try this tip for painting or drawing or whatever kind of art you're into. It might make all the difference.spooky

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.

The Problem with Modern Day Job Searching

Hello frenz and welcome back! How are ya?! So I made a poll on Twitter the other day, talking about making a to-be-honest, cut throat, rant-style blog post about the struggle of job searching. The ballots are in and it seems yes won by a landslide. So here it is, and believe me the struggle (and frustration) is real!

Money, money, monnnaaayyy!

Everything revolves around money. Money has become a survival tool, especially with the value of a dollar gradually decreasing. In order to obtain and sustain money, a job should be in order. In most parts of the world, jobs are hard to come by, especially semi-decent, well paying jobs.

"How are we expected to live like this?"

I don't know about you, but I'm definitely in the market for a job, since losing mine in March. The job search for me has become increasingly difficult and tedious. I don't think I'm being too picky when I ask for full time hours at decent pay. The minimum wage in Pennsylvania is $7.25 an hour. That equals out to $290 a week (40 hours) BEFORE taxes. You get about $100 (sometimes more depending on how much you make) taken out for taxes. That's $190 a week, or $760 a month.

What makes employers think that that low of a wage is livable for anyone? Yes, when you're really broke, money is money. But what do you do when you can't afford your rent or the electric bill or gas for your car, among all the other bills you might be juggling, and you're only getting paid $190 a week? It's not reasonable. I could live off of a $9 an hour wage, which only equals out to $360 a week (before taxes). In some states, $9 an hour or MORE is the minimum wage! To reiterate, I don't think I'm being too picky when I ask for a decent wage.

Okay, what is it with employers asking for 3+ years experience for an ENTRY LEVEL job? In order to gain experience, you need someone to give you a chance, but in order to get a chance, you need to have experience. I'm a fast learner. Give me two, maybe three days top of training and I bet you I could do the job. I understand wanting to hire a person because they already have experience in a certain field, but come on! Give us a chance to do the job before you decide that we're incompetent.

Not only do employers ask for a massive amount of experience, but it seems like nowadays they are only willing to give part time hours (usually only up to 20). In Pennsylvania, the employers do it so they don't have to pay the extra money to offer you benefits. Isn't that fucked up? Not only are you not getting any benefits whatsoever, but you're also getting paid less money per paycheck — and it's not like you're working for much as it is.

A lot of employers straight up lie on their job ads, especially healthcare positions like Home Health Aides or CNAs. They list that they offer full time or part time positions and that they pay $18 an hour. So you think to yourself, fabulous! I can work part time and still bring home decent money! Uh-uh, wrongo. You apply, end up getting the job, and then realize that you're working ten hours a week and that they can't offer full time hours. THEN WHY SAY THAT YOU DO? It's a way to sucker people in and leave them still living in poverty. It's a lose/lose situation.

And for the people who have military experience, forget about it. At least where I reside, employers will swear up and down that they hire veterans. But do they? My boyfriend has applied to a billion jobs (with only having military experience) and has received zero phone calls. So you hire veterans, huh? I bet.

It's the same with college graduates. You might have graduated top of your class, but employers don't care. They say you're too young. You're too inexperienced. You're too this, you're too that. It's utter nonsense. It's like employers are looking for specially programmed robots rather than taking a day or two to train a real person.

It's come to the point where so many people who are living on their own can't find a job. They're forced to move back in with family and take a minimum wage job at Burger King, never using their degree (or training) and feeling like they've wasted the last however many years of their lives.

Is this an issue that can be changed? Or is it going to get to the point where the economy becomes so bad and jobs become so scarce that society just collapses?

Just know that if that does happen, the people living poverty will survive, because it already feels like society collapsed right on top of them.

[Photo Credit: Pixabay]

GUIDE TO: Running a Mobile Blog

Blogging is hard. Blogging is tedious. Between tweeting, instagramming and the pride and glory blog itself, it can take up your entire day. Unless you're totally fine with spending the majority of your days indoors, you might want to try running your blog from a handheld device, like a tablet or even your phone.

I've been blogging for a few months now, and most of it has been completely done from my phone. That's right; whole posts, picture edits, proofreading, all done from my iPhone. I don't have a set space to blog. My laptop screen doesn't work, so it has to be hooked up to a TV, which isn't my ideal blogging setup. I like to blog on the go, that way I never miss the chance at writing down an idea. Here's how you can, too!

First, you're going to need an app (or some sort of internet browser) for your blog. WordPress and Blogger both have apps for iPhone and Android devices with an easy to use interface. You want to be able to check your blog stats, read other blogs and also be able to upload posts from your handheld.

You're also going to want to download a notepad to your handheld. Just look up notepad or notebook in your App Store and choose the one you like best. I personally use an app simply called, Notebook.

It allows you to create different notebooks with pretty designs and it has fun background colors. You can also change your font! It's easy to use and there's no sign up required.

You'll want to create a folder on your handheld specially for your blogging apps. I keep all of my social and blogging apps in one folder, since mobile blogging can be a little chaotic.

Along with social apps and a notepad, you're going to need some photo editing apps. My favorite is Photo Editor.

It allows you to adjust the lighting and overall look of your photos. I also use InstaSize for their adjusting features and filters.

You can always download different photo editors to play around with and decide which you like best. Now you're all set! Get to typing that newest blog post!

Once you've typed your first (or final draft), go ahead and copy & paste it into your blog's app (or internet browser). Chances are the format is going to be a little off, so make sure you're triple checking your work. You don't want to spend all this time on an amazing post, just to have the published version look wonky.

You'll need to do the final touches, like bold or italicize text and add links all in your app or internet browser. I haven't found a notebook app that does all of that….yet! If you know of one, PLEASE let me know.

I've found that uploading your content first and then editing/uploading your pictures last can save time and cause you less hassle. Try creating an album on your phone dedicated to blog pictures. You can even delete all drafts of pictures except for the final, just so it doesn't get messy.

There are some things, however, you might want to use your computer for — like editing your theme. I've tried and tried again to edit my theme via handheld internet browser, but it just doesn't work for me. Everything is entirely too small and you're not able to see the true look of your blog. Save theme editing for your handy dandy computer.

And there you have it. You're now well equipped to run your blog completely from your handheld! Now go out there, live your life while also strutting a blogger's paradise right in your hand!

[Feature Photo Credit: Pixabay]

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.