Wednesday, 26 March 2014

The Pulp Zine: Jewellery Box Collective - Outtakes

Here from The Pulp Zine? Carry on. Blog visitor? Halt. You may want to click here to see the lovely photos and short interviews with the designers featured below. All of these are the photo outtakes, as obviously not all photos could be used; some photos that should be in the outtakes section have gone missing, but as always there are some lovely shots. The original post will be live shortly!

 Enchanted Creativity

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Jai Mala Rose
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Emmy Eff Designs
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Gemini Rising
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Crystalsoup! and Lily Jane

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Luna Wonder

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So, dear friends, if you were wondering what I wanted for my birthday there's this lovely bunch of designers I know... hehe
Much love to everyone who took part in this collective. So many people were behind getting the interviews coordinated and completed, as well as special photos for this set. There were no photo outtakes for The Serpents Club. Also keep an eye out here for something with Rachelle Tratt of The Neshama Project who was unable to be with us for this collective due to her travels - she was very enthusiastic. 

All photos were provided by their respective designers, please do not reproduce any of these images without credit. Some photos were pre-watermarked, other photos have had a watermark added in. If you do reproduce a photo, please remember that on top of the credit the watermarks are not to be removed.

What did you like most about this collective of mine? Please share your thoughts below, any messages will be relayed to the designers.

Friday, 21 March 2014

Controversial Opinion: Iconic WWII Kiss

Before getting into this blog, I want to state that I will not be accepting any rude comments or comments that come off in an attacking way. I realise that my opinion is going to be very controversial, but I will be stating it with evidence. Everyone is entitled to their own theory and opinions on this, but one thing needs to be straight first: disrespecting the dead is acceptable in no way, shape, or form - no matter who they were while living.

Alfred Eisenstaedt/Getty

Above, the photo in question. This week the local news station Facebook accounts have made posts like this one, where they talk about the iconic WWII photo of the sailor kissing a nurse. Much of these posts have been met with a 60% negative feedback on how he was assaulting her and strings of rude comments.


The photo became an icon, and has been met with much backlash. Many people call the man a sexual assailant, claiming that seconds after this was taken she reached up to slap him as shown by the blurring of her hand in other photos from different angles. Has anyone thought that the blur in the photo may simply be due to age? The photo above shows just a slight blurring movement of her hand, not even a second after the previous photo was shot. You may need to enlarge the photo to see it.

Many have been misled about this photo, and have said things like:

"Good [that he's dead] I hope he rots in hell after forcing himself on that women. I hate that this photo of him assaulting her is so famous its sickening. Look at her bodly language she doesn't look very happy."

Pasted directly from the prior post link. After becoming extremely tired of seeing such negative things about a man who fought for my country I decided to post something - plus, she was the only negative one on the whole thread. My response, directly pasted:

"Everyone complains about her being assaulted like he seriously harmed her. First reaction to being grabbed by anyone - known or not - is to reach up and hit them. SO WHAT if he kissed her. Anyone give any thought to how this was right after the war and all these men were just happy to be home and alive? Let him rest in peace instead of reprimanding him for a mistake that happened ages ago."

While I do realise that assault is a serious thing it also needs to be clear to people who wish to act in the way this woman (from Facebook) does that back during WWII there was really no such thing as assault. Something like an unwanted kiss that may result in more action now would likely have been met by police telling her to go on home then.

After posting my bit, I decided to do a bit more research than I had earlier this week. New research showed me that the woman who has been given credit for being in the photo, Edith Shain, did not claim that she had been "assaulted". Assault came into the mix after it was revealed that the sailor and nurse in question did not know each other - and of course, band-wagoners jumped on with how disgraceful this man is. Many fail to do even enough research to find that the man who has just died is one of ten who originally claimed to be the man in the photo. The women who had previously commented with her negativity responded, unassumingly to me:

"Yup who am I to judge someone who sexually assults women lol"

And was met with someone else saying:

"Lol sexually assaults. HAHAHA HAHAHA. Good one."

I decided that maybe it was time I share a little something else with her - this article from 26 June 2010 in the Los Angeles Times, and another message:

"Maybe you should read this where it has been documented that given the situation she did not mind and let him. This isn't the only article around either, if enough looking is done, where she states that she didn't mind."

Which is true! I found multiple articles where representatives and journalists had interviewed her and had her recount the day and how she felt. Below is a quote directly from the above linked article in which she explains what the kiss was for her.

"You can imagine how people felt. They were just elated," she said. "Someone grabbed me and kissed me, and I let him because he fought for his country. I closed my eyes when I kissed him. I never saw him."

This is very important. She states that she let him. Yes, she gives a reason, but that is irrelevant. She let him. Endless amounts of band-wagoners can call this assault, but it is the words of the women in the photo which are important. Yes she states that they were strangers, but no where does she state that it was assault.

Wow, look how hard she hit him you guys. Nearly knocked him over! Okay, I'll stop with the sarcasm - my mum just said something like that and I thought it was a really good one when this next photo is shown.

No source

Do you see how gently she is touching his face, with just the tips of her fingers just barely? Disrespecting the dead is acceptable in no way, shape, or form - no matter who they were while living. By today's standards this could definitely be considered assault, though she'd have to state that it was assault as well as press charges. That could go either way with the way the justice system is in favour of those who work in it or are well-known. Would someone today be charged with assault for kissing a nurse after returning from war? Police get away with so much worse daily, for simply working in law enforcement. That fact alone leads me to believe that a similar case today would be ignored. And anyways, those interviewed or who gave statements about the day said everyone was hugging and kissing each other - everyone was happy that the war was over. I honestly believe if something similar were to happen today that it would be just the same.

All that stated, say it with me now:

Disrespecting the dead is acceptable in no way, shape, or form - no matter who they were while living.

Disrespecting the dead is acceptable in no way, shape, or form - no matter who they were while living.

Disrespecting the dead is acceptable in no way, shape, or form - no matter who they were while living.

Disrespecting the dead is acceptable in no way, shape, or form - no matter who they were while living.

Again, please keep in mind that I do realise that sexual assault is a very serious thing and should not be taken lightly. However I also believe that we should all treat others with kindness and "be the bigger man" so to speak, instead of stooping to the levels of others in the way we hate. Before the woman died, she said her bit - that is something I wish everyone to know, because I don't think I can stand to see another hateful comment about a hero that may potentially not even have been the man.

A comment left where I originally posted this, I feel is very important to share with you all and will be the closing of this blog:
"Well said. I have looked into this whole thing myself and it's just one of those things that people need to educate themselves on instead of letting others try and reason with them.
It's one of the reasons why I don't like certain websites geared towards pop culture and social commentary---there is a lot of misinformation that is spread through these sites, and it's accepted as truth. Yet people fail to realize that not everything they read or see is what it seems."

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Self-care date featuring Boots Botanics Iconic Clay Mask #powerofplants

Bonjour! Last I blogged here with any bits in French was introducing my J'Adore VoxBox from Influenster at the start of the month. It's been enough time now that I've decided on my favourite product from the lot, and I think it is obvious which when the title of this blog is read. If you read my last blog about the products you will see that my rating for the Boots Botanics mask was a 10/10. Now I will show you how I use this product. Let's get to it, shall we?

For a lovely self-care day as my recommendation with this product, you will need the following:
  • Boots Botanics Iconic Clay Mask
  • Warm running water
  • Cold running water
  • Bathtub
  • Book of your choice
  • Music of your choice
  • Any facial products you use (Though I do suggest the SimpleCare Products Conditioning Oil and a Dove beauty bar)
  • Friends if you want them (Start one with space between so you can each use the bath)

Step one
Using warm water to open your pores, wash your face using your hands or a soft facial towel. If you are wearing makeup try to remove as much as possible only using water. I find that this helps lessen irritation of my face.

Step two
Begin by pinning your hair back from your face. Apply your Boots Botanics Iconic Clay Mask to your face surrounding your mouth and eyes. You will want to put this on your nose to help clear pores, as black heads are likely to form there. If you aren't uncomfortable doing so, cover your eyebrows as well. 

Step three
Set your timer or alarm for 10 minutes and crack open the book you chose. If your face begins to burn or feel irritated, you will want to wash it immediately and pay attention to further reactions. If your face has not dried within the 10 minutes and you wish to leave the mask longer, you may do so.

Step four
After the timer goes off or you decide you want to take the mask off, begin to rinse it away using warm water. As your face cooled off previously, the pores closed. You will want to use warm water to re-open them and clean them out. Do so with your hands or a soft facial towel. You may need to dry your face off with a soft towel before repeating the process with some sort of facial towel to remove any staining green colour - I use my hands both times so that I do not irritate my face. As you can see my face appears to be nice and smooth, which it did not before I started. You can also see a stain from my all-natural water-proof makeup that I kept forgetting to take off.

Step five
When your face is good and not green, start running your bath. As the tub fills, use your conditioning oil or moisturizer on your face. If you are using an all-natural conditioning product, leave it whilst you soak. Steam is great for the face. Filling the bath with lavender oil helps for relaxation. If you wish, play some music or continue reading your book. I prefer listening to a full album or at least a 30-minute equivalent while soaking in a bath heavy with epsom salt. Maybe even have a nice cuppa.

Step six
When you are done with your bath, you may like to rinse off standing due to dead skin that flakes off into the water. You might also like to wash your face using warm water and a cleanser now; my recommendation being the Dove beauty bar, as I've noticed it generally left my face nice and soft. (Yes, the bar shown below is in Russian.)

After you've finished your relaxing facial care, you can continue on however you'd like. Mani-pedi, eyelash extensions, reading, writing. Finish your self-care day however you enjoy most.

Products: Boots Botanics Iconic Clay Mask ($10, £6) | Simplecare Products Conditioning Oil ($9, £6) |  Dove Fresh Touch Beauty Cream Bar ($2.5, £1.5) | The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield ($15, 
£9) | Farewell Fighter "The Way We Learn" Digital Album (Free)

I received this product complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.

Monday, 17 March 2014

Author? Me? + Lucky Cate McNabb

16 days. That is how long it has been since I was last here, which is completely unacceptable. Of course there have been loads of thins I've been meaning to blog about including products I will be testing, sweet gifts from friends, and things I've been up to. As a blogger and a student and an artist, however, I've found it extremely hard to make time when life gets in the way - rather, make time and remember. My lack of a camera or proper phone for photos has also created a problem. To the two lovely ladies that won my giveaway: I have not forgotten and hopefully it won't be in the latter half of the 6-8 weeks that the postcards actually reach you.

Soon enough I shall be blogging about various teas that I've tested - either from smaller, independent companies or as gifts. Along with gifts you'll get to see my crystal collection which has recently been added to by some of my lovely tumblr followers over holiday. As soon as I get all the pictures together, I'll write about my time at Holi on 8 March; amazing people, amazing time, and loads of books to read and review.

Speaking of books, I've recently started a class for Creative Writing. CalArts hosts this class and every Sunday I take a train, subway, and a bus to get to Sunset where the class is held. It's quite the experience every time. We've had a few different assignments in class, none of which I actually enjoyed the results of on my part. There are a few students that have marvelous writing, like Patrick, who has quite a way with words. I've most enjoyed how he seems to write things in poetry style, instead of paragraphs. The teachers are pretty swell, too.

The most recent assignment we've had was an out of class assignment in writing a flash piece. A flash piece is a short writing which conveys a specific moment in great detail. For this, in order to make sure we were all writing about the same amount, the piece had to fit on the back of a postcard and cold not be more than 10pt font if typed. The biggest struggle, for me, was choosing a postcard that went with my piece, was meaningful, or looked nice. This arose after I became attached to the one I had bought from Stories cafe and originally planned on using - "Ready for the big Indian pow-wow" from M36.

Postmarked 28 June 1950 from Wisconsin Dells the card was sent out to a Mr. & Mrs. J Erickson in Mundelein, Illinois, the card read:

Dear Grandma + Grandpa
Having a swell time - this will probably reach you after we get home but we wanted you to know we were thinking of you. Marie - Bob + Mary Celeste

Complete with the standard card information "NATURAL COLOR POST CARD MADE IN U.S.A. BY E.C. KROPP CO.. MILWAUKEE, WIS. -- (HEY)" as well as lot or card number 23761 and a one cent postage stamp. I found it very fascinating and decided to keep it in exchange for painting on one of the many stationery postcards I had from an old 1950's or 1960's set.

Do you see my dilemma?

These are all the different postcards I could find in my house: from LACMA, from an old scrapbook, ones my aunt sent me. The second row is the one painted by myself with oil paint and the one I had originally purchased. I enjoyed this assignment so much, I'm going to share with you my writing.

Cold fingertips, cold glass. Odd how the daily routine transformed from normal to haunting in seconds flat. In an instant her face filled with stress, eyes a window to things falling apart. Slow movements made it seem as if time had stopped. Such a blank look on her face made the heartbreak evident – the drop of her fragile heart could be felt with one glance. Through the halls she moved, distressed; tears clearly blocking her vision. Pacing back and forth only caused the small room to close in tighter. An illusion. Voices; a jumbled mess actually, turned to white noise rising louder and louder. Still the ticking of the clock stood out as immensely as her pain. Such a sorrowful sound her crying was, as it had appeared that she was no longer breathing. How could it be true? An instant, unbearable heaviness descended. Her knees giving out, the flow of tears continuing soundlessly as she sank to the ground.
21 is not supposed to be a year to die, it is supposed to be the year to live.

In the middle of writing this the postman came around with a delivery from Cate McNabb cosmetics - my favourite - from the St. Paddy's competition I won. And right on time! The eye shadows came in loose gold (You're Golden) and green (Kiss Me, I'm Irish). The packaging was so lovely, complete with a sticker for me to show off my luck and Paddy's themed confetti! For now I've done little swatches on my hand (which looks oddly swollen) but will definitely be doing other photos soon. These are the perfect colours for me and my green eyes.

Oddly, the golden seems to be showing very subtley - almost not at all on the computer - when it showed so nicely whilst I was taking the photo. Anyways! Both colours are absolutely wonderful, so I'm sure the rest of the collection is too. This is part of their just-released collection which features all new containers and colours. Each product they have is high quality, so I do recommend it. What do you think?

Saturday, 1 March 2014

Oui, j'adore VoxBox!

Délicieux, utile, adorable, sucré, charmant, amusement - all words that come to mind when I think of the beautiful VoxBox I received from Influenster in the post just a short time ago. J'adore VoxBox was a nightmare at first, arriving late and to the wrong house which caused me quite a bit of anxiety. But the amazing products inside definitely made up for it.

So what products was I sent to test?
  • Shine Away Ionic Clay Mask from Boots Botanics
  • 3-Day Straight Flat Iron Spray from John Frieda
  • Looks So Natural Lashes from KISS
  • Crème Caramel Simply Indulgent Tea from Red Rose
  • Lemmon Chiffon Simply Indulgent Tea from Red Rose
  • Family Size Bag of chocolates from Hershey's
Photo taken from my twitter.

The products definitely work well for someone who may be on their way out and goes through a special routine - I however, do not, and wanted to give about a week to test the products before posting full reviews. As I gather the pictures for this, I can totally see myself with the clay mask on struggling to take a sip of my tea and enjoy a chocolate; deciding instead to straighten my hair and prep my lashes. My excited tweet from when I first got the box.

Another photo taken from my twitter.

How fitting that my coffee/tea cup has the Eiffel Tower on it. Crème Caramel is probably a really odd flavour for a tea at first thought - caramel usually being a preferred flavour for a frappuccino perhaps. Since I was sent more samples of this than the Lemon Chiffon, I decided it would be my first test and there aren't any words for it. The tea had an amazing scent, and a taste to mach. Though I had to be up early the next morning I still refused to sleep until I finished. Not only was it pleasing to smell and sip, but it was definitely preparing me to sleep as it calmed me. I only tested this tea once, because I'd like to find a retailer near me before wasting the other samples - it was that good! Another tweet of mine.
My personal rating: 10/10

Also, I'm wearing a mask as I complete this blog.

"Oceanic minerals help draw out deep-rooted impurities and oil without overdrying. Skin is left clearer, softer and smoother." Now it says to use this product weekly, but since my face naturally produces a larger amount of oil daily, I used it two days in a row and then every other day. Plus, this was my first ever clay mask and I really enjoyed it. Each result was the same - my face was extremely dry, though overall smoother and softer than with other products. For me this is great, because any product without oil leaves my face severely dry. 

Cleansing with a light warm water for about five minutes to wash away the green tint left behind, (Though who doesn't want to feel Wicked fabulous while they're singing in their room?) and using my conditioning oil from Simplecare Products was a perfect combination. After the first use, my face was a little redder in the immediate cheekbones than it has been over the last few months and I did break out, but I chalk that up to all the trash that has passed my pores being pushed out as I convert to mineral products.

My younger sister also tried the mask, and seemed to like it well enough. She didn't say much or take a picture, but visibly her face looked 100% better.
My personal rating: 10/10

Left: KISS lashes. Right: Creey wide-eye to show my own.

This last few years I have experienced much loss of my own natural lashes. For what reason, I do not know. Compared to many other girls in my area, though, my lashes are still extremely long - almost as long as these KISS Looks So Natural Lashes - in "flirty". As someone who never wears lashes due to trouble trimming, clipping, shortening, etc. I was very excited for these - perfectly natural lashes from the start, no need for me to mess around with them. However, putting them on was such a hassle for me that I didn't even bother with the other. 

For whatever reason, I just can't seem to get false lashes to stick to my lash line properly. This may be because of my already lengthy lashes, so I don't mind. For every type of lash in every type of brand, someone is able to use them successfully - as I will assume true for these lashes. Looking up, they looked really nice and really natural, though with eyes closed it was a different story - I'd suggest some eyeliner, with a wing perhaps. The corner kept popping up, but trying it farther from the corner of my eye only made them lose the natural effect.

As you can see from the set of four pictures to the left, these lashes are great quality! They have tapered ends so they look more natural, and with the right styling I don't doubt they'd do good for others. For now, I'll just have to ask for some tips on how to work with false lashes if you have naturally long lashes or don't enjoy the terribly obvious look. And if you are looking for a natural set, I recommend these.
My personal rating: 7/10

Of course, the Hershey's kisses were fabulous. Now the only thing left to do is to test John Frieda's 3-Day Straight Flat Iron Spray. My cousin has said she would test it out with me, so I'll be getting in a follow up blog with that review. For your convenience, the below links for these products are straight from the company websites, with prices rounded to the nearest dollar.

Boots Botanics Clay Mask ($10, £6) KISS Lashes ($4, £2,40) Red Rose Simply Indulgent Teas ($5, £3John Frieda Flat-Iron Spray ($10, £6)
These beauty products can be found at most beauty retailers near you, the tea and chocolates at most stores. Each have many online carriers.

I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.