SDCC 2015: Change is Good, Part 2

Day 1

With Preview Night and settling into the hotel I’d be staying at out of the way, it was finally time to take on Comic Con. I had arrived early Thursday morning with one of my group to join others at the Convention Center. For most of us, our mission was to hit up the Bandai and Hasbro booths. Bandai didn’t sell anything on Preview Night, so it was pretty much everyone for themselves. The only way to guarantee entry into these booths was either by 1) Getting a ticket with a specific time slot to return (Hasbro), 2) get one of the first 40 tickets to go immediately to the booth to make your purchase (Bandai), or 3) grab a raffle ticket for the item(s) you wish to buy and hope your number gets chosen for you to return for your purchases (Bandai). Of course, that’ll involve waiting in lines…again.

See how #LineCon fits into the equation now? Both lines move quickly each day, but your place in them determines how good your chances are of getting to the booths early, or even at all. A friend was nice enough to give me their raffle ticket for Bandai, which unfortunately was off by just 1 number. BUT another friend got a winning number, allowing me to buy the one thing I wanted from their booth. In return, I helped them with the LEGO raffle that was happening the same day. Yes, another line to get into. But these SDCC attendees love their LEGO, so it really wasn’t a big deal. Remember, I chose not to attend any panels this year, so walking around and standing in line did make up the majority of my 4 days here. LEGO had 2 raffles, one for an exclusive building set (a different one each day) and one for an exclusive mini figure (again, different one each day). So you can imagine how long this line could possibly be. Believe me, long is an understatement! Like the Hasbro and Bandai lines, it moved quickly once the raffles opened. I was lucky and won both the set and the mini figure (gave that to the friend who helped me with Bandai) for that day.

Good (free) things can come to those who wait in line...
Good (free) things can come to those who wait in line…

Once my friendly mission was accomplished, the only things left to do were head back to the Hasbro booth to get my exclusives, and then head over to Tokidoki’s booth for a signing with their creator Simone Legno. For the latter, wristbands were handed out every morning of the convention to the first 60 people who passed by the booth. 2 of us, myself included, were able to get them. These two things were a must for my Thursday since I would be too busy Friday and Saturday to fit this in. I was very happy to get them crossed off the to-do list.

Hasbro, take my $$$!
Hasbro, take my $$$!

I was about to dread having to drag around my ginormous Hasbro bag since the Transformers Devastator exclusive I got from them was pretty heavy, but friends headed back to our hotel room took it with them. Thank goodness! My friend and I then waited for the Simone Legno signing to start at Tokidoki. We were among the first 10 out of the 60 people for that day, so I was pretty much in and out of there. I had a plan to get the first vinyl figure I ever got from them signed. It was given to me by my best friend several years ago. I also managed to have a small conversation with him while he was signing it. Gotta love a guy with an accent! He even sketched Iron Man for another friend who was shopping around their booth. She loved it, of course.

And with that, my second day at the Convention Center was done! My friend and I stopped over at the Petco Interactive Zone to check out the food trucks and other attractions. Grabbed my dinner from the Salt & Lime truck and ate while waiting for other friends to meet up with us before walking over to Petco Park for the MTV2 Fan Fest event.

Our now group of 4 headed to meet up with 2 more people at Petco Park. Unfortunately, they wouldn’t let portable chairs into the venue, which those 2 people had, so they ended up not coming back for the event (boo). Those in attendance were part of a taping for the MTV2 Fandom Awards ceremony, which also had live performances by Flo-Rida and All Time Low. Each person was given a pass that allowed them 1 free food item and 1 free drink item (non-alcoholic or alcoholic with ID). Since we attended last year’s event, we decided to avoid being near the stage. It was nice to chill out and watch the performances for the remainder of the night.

Looks like I’ll need to do a few more posts for the remaining days of my SDCC experience since there’s just too much to write about. Stay tuned for Part 3!

ZOYA’s Win Me Wednesday

Received the memo late on this, but plugging it in since I know a few followers love this brand. Every Wednesday, Zoya is giving away different shades of their nail color. Winners are picked randomly through Facebook and Twitter the following day. Apparently it’s been happening since April and is still ongoing. Check out how to enter here. Good luck!

The Beauty Blogger Award

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Thank you StashMatters for the nomination!

Rules:

1. Tag the blogger that nominated you.

2. Answer the questions you were given.

3. Nominate 10 people whose blog is about beauty or fashion

4. Make 10 questions for your nominees to answer.

5. Inform the bloggers you chose that you nominated them.

Questions given by StashMatters:

1. How do you do your eyebrows? Not much maintenance with these guys. I usually just brush them into place, but I will use a brow product like Benefit’s Gimme Brow if it’s for a special occasion or I just feel like doing a full face of makeup.

2. Name a lipstick that you can apply without a mirror. M.A.C. Syrup.

3. When you wear makeup, do you typically play up your eyes or your lips? I don’t wear eye makeup very often, so lips it is.

4. Are you a fan of the hair style where one side is shaved? Although I used to have the bottom half of my head shaved back in the day to thin out my hair a bit, I’m not diggin’ this style. At least not on me.

5. What’s your favourite liquid eye liner?  L’oreal Lineur Intense (drug store/mass retailer) and Lorac’s Front of the Line PRO (dept.store/high end).

6. When was the last time you washed your makeup brushes? A few days ago.

7. Your best tip for keeping your makeup from melting off in the summer heat? Use a primer before and setting powder after applying makeup.

8. Preferred nail shape: square, pointed, rounded or squoval? Plain ‘ole round works for me, although I don’t mind square when I actually get them done.

9. Lipgloss or lipstick? Lipgloss.

10. What was the last makeup related present you received? A friend gave me the Shiseido gunmetal eyelash curler for my birthday earlier this year. Love it!

And the nominees are (feel free to disregard if you’ve been nominated before):

Here are my questions for you:

1. What makeup do you wear on a regular day (e.g. before heading to school/work)?

2. When was your last beauty splurge and what did you purchase?

3. Help! I’m looking for a new eyeliner, preferably one that’s long lasting and works well for lids that tend to get oily. What would you recommend?

4. Water lining. With it or over it?

5. Describe your go to “casual” outfit.

6. Do you call jean leggings “jeggings” *cringes*? Be honest!

7. What’s your all time favorite beauty brand?

8. You’re stuck on a deserted island. What beauty product will you take with you? You can only take 1!

9. When it comes to jewelry, do you prefer silver or gold?

10. Who’s your celebrity style muse, if any?

SDCC 2015: Change is Good, Part 1

***Apologies in advance for the wordy post!***

For those of you that are currently following my blog, you know that I traveled to San Diego a few weeks ago for their annual Comic Con. This was my 7th year in attendance, and I decided to finally make some changes to my usual Con routine. With the exception of the first year, my itinerary has included Preview Night, which occurs on Wednesday, before SDCC starts for the general public the following day. This gives collectors and anyone else interested a chance to check out the exhibit hall to get a first look at the booths and exclusive items being offered that year. Regardless of what your level is with collecting, Preview Night is a golden opportunity to get whatever you want in advance. Of course, that’s if you can get in for it. Much of the group that I’ve gone to SDCC with has been fortunate enough to get that day during registration, myself included.

One part of Comic Con that I’ve always taken part in was watching panels. It was much easier back then to simply get in line early morning of the day you wanted to watch them, but it has changed drastically since then. One of the popular panel venues, Hall H, recently started a wristband system last year in order for attendees to secure a spot inside the area for the panel day they wanted if they received one. The wristbands are allotted by color and letter to determine 1) your place in the line to get into the hall, and 2) how good your chances are that you will get in for the first panel of the day, which would depend on the color/letter of the wristband received. This year, friends of mine that were interested in Hall H had the option of either staying in line overnight after getting their wristbands, or coming back in the line before a designated time frame the next morning before the hall opened. Of course, you needed to have at least a few people in that line in order to secure your spot. This is where team work comes in, even more so if you happen to have a small group that wants to watch panels. I decided to avoid them altogether this year since I’ve done everything involved in the panel process for several years straight.

My goal for this year was to check out more off site events. As Comic Con got closer, I listed at least 2 that I’d be interested in attending each day. Most of them were free, although there were a few paid ones I had in mind just in case. Here’s how this year’s SDCC panned out for me with those changes.

Day 0 – Preview Night

MY view from waiting at the Convention Center Wednesday morning.
My view of downtown SD from the Convention Center Wednesday morning.

Despite a delayed flight on Tuesday, my friend and I were still able to get into San Diego late afternoon/early evening and get together with other members of our group for a pre-SDCC meeting. Here we discussed what our plans were for Preview Night, and if we needed to collaborate to help others with certain exclusives. A few of them were at the Convention Center around 5:00 am to secure a place in line. Yep, that’s how we roll! I met up with them before 7, then went back and forth to my hotel room and other places throughout the day while others in our group joined us. Mind you this was the first of several occasions my group and I lined up during the event. Once we were upstairs and got our badges at registration, it was off to another line to get into the exhibit hall for Preview Night.

Once we were settled in our positions, we waited a few more hours before the exhibit hall opened. This was a 12+ hour day of waiting and buying things for a few of us. For anyone who happens to be a newcomer to SDCC and also happens to be attending Preview Night, here are a few things you should remember:

1. Make a list of the items you want to buy.

2. Know the booth numbers of the vendors selling said items, and use the exhibit hall map from the CCI website or the map from the event guide given to you after receiving your badge to get an idea of where you need to go first.

3. Have your funds ready! If you plan to use a credit/debit card, it’s best to alert your banks prior to SDCC so that you don’t get any decline errors when charging for several transactions. Otherwise play it safe and bring cash for everything, if not a few things.

4. If for any reason others not attending SDCC request for you to purchase items for them, Preview Night or throughout the remainder of Con, have them either give you the funds in advance or forward them to you via PayPal or VenMo to help save yourselves some time. If any item you pick up happens to be large/heavy, don’t hesitate to ask that they add a little extra, especially if you plan to ship everything back home. It’s very likely that they won’t mind since you’re putting in effort to help them aside from yourself.

Behold. the madness that is Preview Night!
Behold, a sneak peek of the madness that is Preview Night!

I managed to acquire a few items that I had my eye on, which allowed me to focus more on other things the following day.

The Preview Night haul. :)
The Preview Night haul. 🙂

Once my full day of lining up and waiting came to a close, the friends I was rooming with for the weekend and I had a late dinner, then transported ourselves along with Preview Night purchases in tow to our hotel. Lucky for them, they got to sleep in the room that night while I took a shower, changed, and got picked up by another friend to head back to the Convention Center. Yep, more lining up! I got there before 3am the next morning. Such is my Con life. You can add the hashtag #LineCon to the start of my list of other things SDCC is known as from my perspective.

My view before getting a few hours of sleep to get ready for the official start of SDCC.
My view before getting a few hours of sleep to get ready for the official start of SDCC.

This is basically how my group and I prepare ourselves for the Con madness. Trust me when I say it does get better from here, as you shall see in Part 2.

Saturday Makeover

My best friend was asked to do a challenge since receiving her MUA certification. She’s approaching the halfway point to doing 60 faces. I just happened to be lucky number 13. 😛 I requested to have her use Urban Decay’s Smoky palette and tried out the new NYX Liquid Suede lipstick she picked up from Beauty Con (the shade used is Soft Spoken. Love it!). Of course, these 2 items are now on my wish list. Here’s my before and after.

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I forgot to fix my bangs before having the “after” pic taken. Oh well!

That’s her IG handle on the bottom left if you’d like to give her a follow. Also, she’s recently joined the WordPress community by starting her own beauty blog. Feel free to check it out here. Hope everyone’s enjoying their weekend. I’ve pretty much shaken off this post vacation lazy mode and will be working on my SDCC posts. I’m hoping to have at least the first one up by next weekend, if not sooner. Stay tuned!

Studio Calico July PL Kit – Fairground

By far the “sunniest” themed Project Life kit from Studio Calico! Here’s what I received:

and check out these adorable embellishments!

I have a lot of catching up to do with my Project Life pages. I haven’t even touched on last month yet! Hopefully I can get all caught up soon.

It’s the Pits! – Underarm Detox

*This was supposed to be posted yesterday, but work had me drained. Sorry for the delay!*

During the summer, we all tend to make some changes to our health/beauty routines. Lighter makeup application here. More use of waterproof/sweat-proof products there. Speaking of sweat, it usually comes on pretty strong for me during this time of year. By some random encounter via Twitter, I found out about how one user tried an underarm detox to help lessen “that funk” before starting their use of natural deodorant. I was intrigued by how easy the process was. Basically, a clay mask was applied to the underarms, and left for a few minutes in order to rid the body of any toxins and residual that made their current deodorant less effective. Being a target of constant perspiration on my pits, I decided to give this a whirl.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 teaspoons of bentonite clay. (I purchased a 16 oz bag of it from Amazon, which will more than likely last me a few months)
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1-2 teaspoons water

Mix all ingredients in a non-metal bowl with a non-metal spoon. Add an additional 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of water if needed to reach desired clay mask consistency. The original recipe called for a tablespoon of the clay, but the mixture was too dry, thus the need to add more water. Plus there was way too much leftover.

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This is the bentonite clay I used for this mask.
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All ingredients prior to mixing. This is with just 2 teaspoons of the clay. Now you know why I tweaked up the measurements a bit.

Apply an even layer over underarm areas and allow to sit for 5-20 minutes. I started at just under 10 at first in case I had any sensitivity, which I didn’t. After a few times, I was able to leave it on for as long as 10-12 minutes. I recommend trying not to move your arms around while it’s on. Clay masks will dry up and get crumbly!

Once your desired time is reached, rinse off with warm water and a washcloth. I normally use this mask prior to showering. This can be repeated daily or as needed. I used this twice a week prior to my SD trip and it did minimize odor. Unfortunately, it didn’t stop me from sweating altogether. What was most noticeable was that I didn’t have that “waxy” feeling on my underarms anymore. The mask managed to get rid of any residual from the deodorant that I regularly use. Definite thumbs up for that.

In one of the many blog tags I participated in, I had asked readers if they have tried any bizarre beauty regimens. This would be my answer to that question. Bizarre indeed, yet beneficial.