Thursday, October 20, 2011

Detrivore Swatches, White and Black Primer

I placed a small Detrivore order, a handful of shadow samples and the two new primer shades.

Detrivore's moved - their new site is I like the new site, more user friendly. also like the search feature, just start typing in a few letters and a little drop down box with options will appear!

There's also a little note that says 20 new shadows due November 1st. Ooooh, can't wait for that!





Gargoyle - dark gray satin with purple sparks glitter

Dreary - dark gray

Contamination - light brown

Anomaly - dark red based purple

Ancient - dark purple color, because you can never have enough purple
I agree, never enough purple. It looked more medium orchid on me, a gorgeous shade.

Ghost - sheer white highlight
After a few minutes seemed to blend into my skin, a cream ivory with a hint of pinkish/blue shimmer.

Frostbite - white satin
blueish white, more solid than Ghost

Golgotha - light gray

Switchblade - light shimmery gray

Fortress - gray matte


I love Detrivore's Original primer. I use it everyday, but there's barely a dent in the container because you don't need to use a lot.




I should've used a different color shadow to show you how the primer affects the color, but my brain was running in a thousand different directions and I just grabbed the Frostbite in front of me. Duh.

Well, I hope you've found the pictures helpful, and thanks for looking!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Morgana Eye See You Halloween Swatches + 3 glosses

I ordered Morgana's sample set of Eye See You Halloween shades. They're swatched over UDPP.






Color Descriptions:

Cronea - slightly metallic champagne with silver & gold sparkle

Pumpkin Eye Patch - vivid orange with gold tones and metallic orange sparkle.

Glaring Goblin - slightly metallic olive with an intense gold sheen and golden shimmer.
This makes me think of a sumptuous gown that Guinevere would've worn. Beats me why, but as soon as I swatched it that's the first thing that popped into my head.

Oogling Ogre - vivid green with a tint of blue & orange-copper-gold sparkles

Creepy Peepers - deep grey-brown with a shift of green, steel blue and red-violet

Sneaky Seer - Lavender with sparkles of shifting gold and silver.
This one's my favorite. No surprise there!

Freaky Peekers - grape with a shifting sheen of violet to blue-green

Evil Eye Candy - dusky red with turquoise sparkles

Vampy Voyeur - wine with a violet sheen & violet-blue sparkle.

The lip glosses


Witches' Brew - Deep wine with red, red-violet, and gold sparkles

Sexy Spellcaster - Grape with intense blue sheen that changes green. If you love the balm Spellcaster, you'll love Sexy Spellcaster

Fantastic - Rich red with gold to green & sparkle

I apologize for the swatches here - they're glopped on because I couldn't find my lip brushes and used shadow brushes instead. A storm was coming and I wanted to hurry up & get a picture of these - I realized the Sexy Spellcaster looked awful, went in to redo it, but too late, it was downpouring within a minute. The sky was a really odd blue shade (which you can see in the pic) but turned black in the blink of an eye.

These are available in a variety of scents/flavors as well as unscented.

A word of warning on the glosses - these are filled to the top! Be really careful when you open the lid, and have a brush ready to grab any gloss trails that hang from the lid as you move it away. You don't want to lose any of this fabulous gloss.

Hope you've found the swatches helpful, and thanks for looking.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Fyrinnae Halloween Swatches

I didn't get all of the new Fyrinnae Halloween swatches, but here's what I did.



Some very sloppy lip lustre swatches



Color Descriptions:

Are You my Mummy? - It starts out a vibrant, gleaming emerald green. Closer to light or at an angle this shade takes on an aqua, then a striking deep pink color. It's not simply a highlight; the entire shadow's hues change

Purgatory - Almost metallic red shines over a black base, making this shade perfect for liner as well. It was intended to be a replacement for our old "Still Breathing" from 2006, but it is a much more velvety-red shade.

Wake Not the Dead - This shadow has a solid, slightly shimmery, deep orchid purple base. It's filled with captivating sparkles in varying hues of gold, green, and blue, which all change to give the shadow a distinctly pink-purple cast.

Alchemist's Curse - This shadow is pink shimmer and sparkle on black, but closer to light or at a different angle and it becomes a vivid gold to green, the black base setting off the highlights.

Shinigami (this is from the Halloween 2009 collection) - Deep, smoldering royal purple entwinted with a scattering of blue and crimson sparkle. Darker than it appears in swatch photos. Not lip-safe, slightly reformulated in 2/2011

Dorian Grey - I can't find an "official" description, but it's super dark, some say navy, others say black, with multi shimmer. It's not as dark as Raven's Prophecy, and looks more grey/green when applied lightly.

Raven's Prophecy - Deep black, this shadow glitters with lime and pale blue. Closer to light or at different angles, and the sparkle takes on a pink and turquoise appearance. Photos don't even begin to show the effect

Lip Color Descriptions
Ultra Phantom - (not Halloween) Sheer aqua sparkle that turns to pink in different light or angles, and sometimes almost pale orange. Looks neat worn alone, stunning over black or dark purple lipstick, or perks up a plain pink.

Diabolic Masquerade - (not Halloween) Dark, vampy, and perfect if you're tempted by black lipcolours, but just want a more wearable shade. Diabolic Masquerade is a glowing red shimmer embedded in soft black, though applies more as a deep, dark crimson glow rather than just glossy black. Opacity depends on the amount applied, but it is not sheer.

Sweetest Poison - Sweetest Poison is a brilliant true red filled with glittering red sparkle. May stain temporarily; we recommend applying over balm. Halloween 2011

Coffin Velvet - Coffin Velvet is a rich, vibrant purple, leaning slightly warm. It has a satin to matte finish (a hint of satiny shimmer, but just barely). Halloween 2011

My favorite shadow is Wake Not the Dead. My pics don't capture the sparkle, Fyrinnae's description of "captivating sparkle" is right. Raven's Prophecy is a close second, once again my pics don't capture the beauty of this one. You need this. Purgatory - I don't wear much red shadow but this is fucking gorgeous.

The lip lustres - Coffin Velvet is lovely, but I think Sweetest Poison actually just beats it for my favorite. Diabolic Masquerade is wonderful, it looks more black in my pics but the red really comes through in person. Ultra Phantom is hard to see in the second photo (I put an arrow in there to help) but it's really flattering on all by itself.

Fantastic shades, all of them.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

UD Naked Eyes

You've already seen these pics but I haven't posted any LOTD's in months.

Nars Siberia Sheer Glow foundation
Tarte for True Blood LE natural cheek tint

The Siberia is just a tiny bit yellow on me, but it helps minimize my rosacea. The cheek tint is applied high on my cheekbones and swept back. The color on the apples of my cheeks isn't color, but roscea. The blush helps make it look better and not like two big circles of red.

Eyes - all shadows from UD Naked palette
Detrivore primer
Virgin on lid, browbone
Buck in crease
Naked in crease
Sin above crease to lighten & blend into browbone
Creep in brows
Black Out gel liner
Rimmel Lash Accelerator mascara in Extreme Black

Evil Shades Hardcore Lips in Roue



I feel so much better now that my hair's fixed. I felt there were shades I couldn't wear with my weird orangey red mix, particularly red lipstick. I can enjoy my favorites again! It's also nice to not have to try and figure out what the hell to put in my brows. I was using coppery shades of shadows which matched the hair, but didn't look good with my skin and overall coloring.

Thanks for looking!

Friday, October 14, 2011

A Very Long Hair Story - Part Four (finally, the end!)

Wow, you've stuck with my epic novel this long? Thanks! It feels good to get it all off my chest.

The day of my appointment finally arrived. I got there 10 minutes early, parked out front, and was happy to see the double front doors to the salon were wide open on this beautiful evening. I walked in and Samantha greeted me immediately. She hung up my coat while another staff member poured me a glass of water and asked if I needed anything. There was a place card on the shelf in front of the mirror with my name on it.

Samantha reviewed what we'd discussed earlier, and I didn't need to correct her or remind her about anything. She put a cape on me, mixed up color, and got to work. She had a high round work table on wheels for her supplies, which included an enormous stack of foils. The table was interesting, with various sized holes around the edge so she could slide her combs, clips, and other tools in and out. It even a timer built right in. It was well thought out, and while small things like a table don't seem like a big deal, it meant she was prepared with everything she needed, instead of a few minutes here and there getting supplies or moving things around as she needed them or finished with them.

She sectioned my hair, clipped it up and out of the way, put down a foil, and brushed the color on. It was a lot of work, and she was careful to saturate every piece of my very thick hair this way. It took her a little over an hour (hour & fifteen I think) to apply color to my entire head. She asked the staff member who had given me the water to mix up additional color each time she needed more. I don't remember exactly which shades, it was either 2N and 3NN, or 2NN and 3NN, with a 10 volume developer. I had to stop smiling like an idiot at that. 10 volume was perfect to deposit the color without causing more damage. The red she used was 6VR, a nice violet based red very close to the shade I wanted back in June.

I processed for thirty minutes, and Samantha was no more than twenty feet away from me the entire time. She brought me to the sink in a smaller back room with two sinks, and closed the door over for privacy. The wash area smelled really nice, like soothing fresh herbs. It was clean there too, and I could see the restroom, which was also immaculate. The rinsing and washing was very relaxing, and I just sat there and enjoyed it with no talking. Her scalp massaging technique relieved the sinus pressure from my allergies, which was an added bonus. Another stylist brought in his male client to get washed next to me, and his stylist put a hot towel over his face. I wondered if the guy was gonna fall asleep!

The sinks were so comfortable, pedestal type sinks that tilted, with higher chairs than the usual wash area ones. There was a rubber gasket right at the neck, and all I had to do was sit, move my head ever so slightly, and the sink tilted up to meet my head. Yeah, I know, I sound like a geek getting all excited over a sink, but once again, I appreciate something well thought out. Low sinks suck, you have to lean back in a chair and it's uncomfortable, particularly when you're getting washed multiple times. The rubber gasket meant Sami could rinse the back of my head without me having to hold my head up while leaning back, and I wasn't gonna get a stream of water down my neck like my previous salon visit. I'd rather a salon invest in something that makes the process easier and more comfortable for the client and the stylist, rather than on decor that serves no purpose other than looking pretty.

Samantha brought me back to the chair and asked me about drying and styling (which I am far too lazy to do myself), then sectioned my hair and began blowing it straight so she could really see the color. The dryers are all on retractable cords in the ceiling, so she only had to let go when she needed both hands, then reach up and grab the dryer. The few overprocessed blonde streaks were a little lighter than the rest, but I knew this would be an issue, and we had discussed it during the consult. Given what she had to work with, I was amazed how well it turned out. The entire appointment took two hours.

She used Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Wild Ginger Hydrocream Whip (mousse) in my hair while drying it. It smelled fantastic. I bought a container of that, as well as a PM Color Care shampoo and conditioner. I scheduled my next appointment for 6 weeks later, a recolor and cut. While I do want to let it grow, I don't think I'll let it get as long as it was originally. I gave Sami a big hug as I left - she might've thought I was a bit nutty, and some people aren't touchy feely so it can be weird to hug someone, but I don't think she realized the weight she lifted off me.

I took this picture the next afternoon, so it's slept on. The red is very visible in the sunlight, but still noticeable indoors too.



I've had this lovely color for a week (as I type this) and I've even attempted to brush it straight while I blow it dry a bit. I'll have to let it air dry & curl and take some pics to compare the before & after.

Hindsight being 20/20, this is what I should've done in the first place, kept it mainly dark and added some red. After changing my entire head to red myself a few times, I didn't think it would be such a fiasco. I feel like me again, and have realized a good many things along the way - but since this adventure has been so long already, more on that another time.

Now, who's the magician? If you're anywhere in northern/central NJ or eastern PA, I highly recommend Samantha at Salon Gratitude in New Hope, PA. I witnessed two of the other stylists (one being the owner) at work, from consultations to cuts and color, and I was sincerely impressed with everyone there. I wish I had known about this place when I started the journey, but in the end, it was worth it. I have a great new stylist!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A Very Long Hair Story - Part Three

**Note this was originally published on October 12, 2011.  Not sure what went wrong, but somehow it's disappeared.  I can see the post in my list of postings but it doesn't appear on my blog at all.  Original comments have been lost, so sorry!**

I was upset with the results of the second appointment. I didn't want to call and talk to Amy or the owner and ask for a refund, or even to say that I was unhappy. I didn't want either of them to ask for the chance to fix the color. While I had known all along that the black might be tough to remove and it might take multiple steps to get me to my goal, I never imagined how miserable I'd be. Yes, my hair was sort of red. But it was the coppery red I didn't want, a mish mash of colors, damaged, and much shorter than I wanted.

I wanted Donna's advice on what to do next. I was at the point of buying a box of black dye and covering it all up, but hesitated because I didn't want to make an emotional decision. I'd invested so much time and money, and wondered if it was possible for anyone to get my hair to a red shade, even if it meant going burgundy/super dark red. I was worried that trying to continue to reach my goal shade was going to make things worse.

I spent hours looking up other salons, particularly those who specialized in corrective color. I didn't want go for multiple consultations, and I didn't want to risk having someone promising me they could do the job and fail. My hair was damaged enough, how much more was I willing to put it through?

I wrote my "What Do You Look for in a Salon?" post three weeks after my second appointment. It was therapeutic, even though I didn't want to tell everyone exactly what was going on at the time. I'm not usually so girly about my hair; you guys know it's usually messy and I don't bother with it much. I think the hard part was that I lost my confidence, and I just didn't feel like me.

Amy's salon was gorgeous - very plush, big place, very busy. Some of the salons I looked up online were similar, and I was afraid to end up in the same position, being shuffled around and not having the colorist/stylist pay careful attention to my hair. Amy's juggling clients is what the main problem was, IMO. She was so busy trying to work on several people at a time, and I ended up sitting too long and overprocessing.

I'd spent six and a half hours the first visit, three and a half the second, so I did see many of salon's customers. While I never like judging a book by its cover, it was obvious that I was not their typical customer. Red is super popular right now, so I didn't think I was asking for the impossible. Perhaps I should've brought in specific photos or given exact color names/numbers that I was looking for. Did Amy simply forget our consultation and what we discussed at the start of each appointment, wing it when it all started to go wrong, or reinterpret my requests to conform to those of her other clients?

I found three possibilities. One salon used Pravana, and I thought that perhaps going there, the staff might know how to handle my black Pravana better, and get me to the Pravana shade I wanted. I thought basing my decision on a brand wasn't a great idea.

The second looked ok online - a big place with full spa, remodeled, every amenity. I asked Donna if she'd ever heard of the place and she had, and gave me the name of a colorist there. I looked up a little more info and found a lot of negative reviews. I know enough to know that you can't necessarily trust online reviews. People might give an unfair review for any number of reasons, from dissatisfaction to being just plain crazy. We've all seen makeup reviews where someone slammed a product for ridiculous reasons, so you all know what I mean. Was it one or two people leaving the same poor review everywhere they could, or multiple clients? Many of the reviews were negative due to pricing - when I looked at the prices posted online, yes, they were high, but they were also the going rate for a decent salon.

I asked another friend about the place, and she told me she'd gone about 8 years ago. She also said to make sure I scheduled an appointment with the owner. Many of the bad reviews were about the owner, so this made me worry. There were several reviews that expressed dismay at the staff's overly sexy attire, and one reviewer claimed she had worked there and the staff gossiped about the clients while they were in the chairs. I know salons are gossip havens, but I don't want to read that the staff is talking about me while I'm right there. Jeez, at least wait til I leave! I was also concerned that a posh salon meant the stylist's rent would be higher and I didn't want to take the chance of having another overbooked stylist not giving my hair the attention it required.

I decided to drive over and check it out. I found the place, but was unable to pull into the parking lot because a delivery truck blocked the entrance. There was on the street parking, but no available spaces due to other businesses in the same building. I saw several clients, in gowns, with their hair either under caps or in foils, standing in front of the door smoking. I realize people smoke, but shouldn't the salon have somewhere for clients to smoke? Isn't there a designated smoking area inside or on the side of the building, or somewhere other than smack in front of the entrance? I don't want to walk through a cloud of smoke to get inside. I know that's a dumb reason to reject a place, but it was the nail in the coffin for me.

I continued my search and found another salon. This place had a good amount of info online, and the reviews were great. There two lukewarm reviews, but the concern was pricing. Their posted prices were comparable to other area salons. I looked around for it but realized later my Google directions were wrong.

I finally called one afternoon. I spoke with the receptionist and told her I needed to schedule a consultation for corrective color. I gave her the condensed version of trying to go from black to red and the fright that was currently on my head. She was really nice and very informative so I scheduled the consultation.

I got there 30 minutes early, since I wasn't sure about the traffic during rush hour or exactly where the place was. The traffic was minimal and I found it right away. I parked right outside, which was nice since it was pouring rain. Went in and was instantly greeted by a staff member who walked to me (instead of having to wait at the front desk for someone to look up and acknowledge me). The receptionist took my coat, offered me a beverage, magazine, and a seat, since I was early and the stylist was finishing her previous client.

This was a small salon - 4 chairs, and a small bench. I thought, this is great. They can't schedule multiple clients at a time because there's no where to put them! The salon was nice, an older building with gorgeous wider plank floors, lots of character but without being forced. It didn't need all the rich pillows, wall art, or jewel toned paint colors on the wall. It was simple, clean, bright even through the downpour, and had just enough of a funky vibe. The staff members were neatly dressed, stylish without looking like they were going pole dancing. Their color bar was great, all the bottles lined up on shelving so I could see them mixing it up, instead of in the back room (at the other place, when the door to their color room swung open, I could clearly see dye splattered on the wall and overall messiness).

The stylist, Samantha, finished up and came over to talk to me. I gave her the rundown and she listened, really listened. I told her the whole sad story and my mixed feelings on what to do. She looked through my hair, checking all around. She must've been doubtful that a professional had worked on my hair, because it sure didn't look it. She agreed that there was damage to my hair, and she didn't want to push it further. She agreed that going darker would be a good option, but felt dark brown would be a better option for me than black.

We talked about adding a second color, and she felt she could give me some red to satisfy my initial urge for red. She felt a violet based red would be best, which was what I wanted originally. She offered to put color on immediately, but I couldn't stay. I felt very pleased with the consultation, and set up an appointment for two weeks later. I really looked forward to the appointment - this was one misadventure I wanted behind me once and for all.

Wow, this is an epic novel. But there's an ending in sight, I promise. Part Four to follow.

Very Long Hair Story Part Four - click here.

Monday, October 10, 2011

A Very Long Hair Story - Part Two.

My second salon appointment was 10 weeks later. I'd known all along the black might not come out, so I was willing to give Amy another chance at getting my hair closer to red. My second appointment was also set up as an open one, with blocks of time set aside. It was three and a half hours, not including drive time.

The assistant Mark no longer worked at the salon. Another assistant, Sue, helped this time. There were scheduling issues with overlapping clients, which caused small delays (5 to 10 minutes) between each step.

Here's what happened:

Amy put bleach on (in foils) to add in more highlights
Sue rinsed and washed me
Amy added color to the bleached areas
Sue rinsed and washed me again
Amy added more color all over
Sue rinsed and washed me again, and during this wash water poured down the side of my neck and front, soaking my shirt.

I sat under the dryer for about 15 minutes. The dryer and timer both shut off, but it took about 15 minutes before anyone checked on me.

Amy turned the dryer back on for another 15 minutes. I waited approx 20 minutes before anyone checked on me. Amy had another client sitting across from me under a dryer, and a third client in her chair. As soon as the third client was moved to the wash area, Amy brought me to her chair and started to dry my hair with the regular hair dryer. She noticed some "blonde" pieces and had Sue mix up some additional color to apply on these areas.

Amy applied the glaze to the entire top of my head
Sue rinsed and washed me again
Amy had me sit under the dryer for about 20 minutes

Amy brought me back to her chair and looked through my hair. She told me I'd be very happy and that on my next visit, she'd do more highlights and lowlights and I'd reach my goal. The lighting wasn't great but it looked ok. I was tired, hungry, wet, and just wanted to leave.

When I got home I really looked carefully and was unhappy with the results. I didn't take any pictures then. The first three pictures were taken Sept 27, four and a half weeks later, and the color had lightened during this time.

without flash. You can see bits of blonde closer to the front and scattered throughout, which have a slight green tinge in person.

with flash, the red is more vivid, but you can the color is uneven.

the back, also very uneven.

I took these pictures October 5. Honestly, it looks better in the pictures than in person.



In direct sunlight, it looked a bit better.


I should have called Amy immediately - or even within a week or two - to let her know I was dissatisfied with the results. I didn't want Amy or the owner of the salon to ask me to come back and let either of them correct it. I felt I'd given Amy the opportunity to get me closer to my goal with the second appointment. I though this appointment took me in the wrong direction, and I couldn't take the chance of a third attempt.

My hair had suffered damage, worse in some spots than others. This really pissed me off, because I could've fucked it up at home for far less money and in far less time.

See, I told you this was a long story. Thanks for being patient and sticking with me through it. Part Three to follow.

Very Long Hair Story Part Three - click here. 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

A Very Long Hair Story - Part One.

I talked to my friend and sometimes stylist Donna back in June about going back to red hair. She sent me to her stylist, Amy, a lovely woman with over 20 years experience, who worked in a plush, reputable salon about an hour away.

I scheduled a consultation first. I met with Amy for about 15-20 minutes, explained what I'd been using for the last two years (Pravana Chromasilk in Black), my goal (vivid violet based red), that I expected it to be an all day event and likely need a second visit, particularly if the black was stubborn and wouldn't come out. I also talked about the possibility of losing length if the black didn't come out on the ends. Finally, I told her I was worried because my hair goes *poof* and turns into a triangle on my head when there's not enough length to pull it down.

my goal shade, Pravana Chromasilk Light Red Violet Blonde, 7.62

Amy reviewed each of my concerns, and although I still wasn't positive the black would come out, I felt comfortable with her and scheduled an appointment for two weeks later.

Here's my "old" hair, long and solid black, still damp in the pic but you can see my s waves forming. This was in early June. I've cropped out my nephew Oliver since I didn't get a chance to ask my sister if it was ok to post his pic. He's really a cutie pie though!


The day of my appointment, I arrived a few minutes early. I had a book with me, water, Clif Mojo bars, paper and pencil to take notes. Amy introduced me to her assistant Mark, who was very professional and really seemed capable. I didn't specifically write each time they shampooed my hair (I think it was every time they rinsed) but here's what happened:

Mark washed my hair and conditioned it.
Amy applied the color remover.
I sat under a dryer for approx 15 minutes.
Mark rinsed, reapplied color remover under Amy's guidance.
Sat another 30 minutes with a cap under the heat.
Mark rinsed, reapplied color remover.
Sat another 30 minutes with a cap under the heat.
Mark rinsed me again, then did a deep conditioning treatment.

Amy moved me back to her chair to see how much black had lifted, and she seemed disappointed. There was a very small change, but the last 6 to 8 inches hadn't budged. We agreed to cut at that point, going shorter than I wanted, but I was willing to sacrifice length for color. She talked about adding highlights to further lift the black and get more red in.

Amy applied one more application of remover (the 4th), and back under the dryer for another 30 minutes.
Mark was busy, so a second assistant rinsed and washed me.
Amy applied an all over semi permanent glaze.
Mark rinsed that out, then Amy applied highlights throughout.
Mark rinsed that out, then he applied a second deep conditioning treatment.
I sat under the dryer for another 15 minutes or so.

Amy blew my hair straight, which I did not enjoy because my scalp was sore from all the chemicals. I'd been at the salon for six and a half hours and was tired, hungry, and just wanted to go home.

These pics were the next day. I used the flash so you can see the red.



Although I wasn't happy with the results, I had known all along that the black might not come out and I'd lose length. The last time I had a salon take me from black to red, it took 7 hours, I lost 6 inches of hair, but I did leave with vibrant red hair. I felt more disappointed, felt I should've just done it myself because I could've gotten more of the black out in less time. I reassured myself by realizing that at least my hair felt great, still soft with minimal damage despite all the chemicals.

It took about 2 weeks before I decided that I was ok with it. I felt I should go to the second appointment and let Amy continue, since I had already invested so much time and money into it. I was hopeful that the next visit would get me closer to my goal.

Part Two of this very long story will follow.

Very Long Hair Story Part Two - click here.