Lips: MAC's Lipstick in "Evening Rendezvous" (LE) [MAC Magic of the Night 2015]

;_; I know! I'm sorry. A special sorry to Maxi and all my other Maaya-followers. My review for Follow Me Up is coming I swear!! Amongst others...

Life has been ridiculously chaotic for me since mid-July. So much has changed - SO much - but I don't think I'm ready to disclose those changes here. All I can say is that I'm sorry for dropping off the face of the Earth for all of these months.

In character with the fact that a shit-ton of time has passed, we're already moving fast into the holiday season. As far as makeup is concerned, nothing much has changed for me, thankfully (or not). I still love MAC - hence this review - I still love trying new products, lipstick is still my happiness, and I'm still a bit of a collector. I see these kinds of reviews as the best way to pull myself back into my blog, so bear with me.

MAC's big holiday collection this year was released in different parts - Magic of the Night, Enchanted Eve, and Irresistibly Charming - with different individual products, sets, and teal/blue/purple reflective packaging. More color than last year's Heirloom Mix, but still in line with MAC's focus of sets versus new, limited edition colors.

...And I just tried to find 'my post' for the Heirloom Mix collection just to discover that I took pictures of the lipsticks I bought BUT NEVER WROTE THE REVIEWS. For fuck's sake.

Anyway...I didn't look much into this collection, as I'm not really big on sets, but in the end I did pick up one set - the red lip bag - and the only new, limited edition lipstick, which I'm reviewing in this post, "Evening Rendezvous." I've been wearing this color quite a bit lately so I thought I'd start here with my second attempt at blogging regularly.


The IceBlock [25]: The Big ED

I remember once, in passing, how I read that every long distance relationship has that one ultimate goal: the end date.

That is to say, we that put ourselves in this unnecessary position all aim towards that rough estimate in time where we aim to close the distance. I don't know why, but that sounds kind of ominous. Or maybe that's an accurate way for it to sound since, you know, maybe once there's no distance, our relationships will crash and burn so viciously that we'll join the crowd of "LDR ARE SO FUCKING STUPID OMG."

Anyway...I'm here to say that I have an end date. Rejoice.

But what I'm here to say even more is that there is so much...more to what this means. Has meant. For years. I talk primarily about my long distance relationship because I know a lot of people hear that I'm wanting to, planning to, preparing to move and automatically think that it's because of my long distance relationship. I'm here writing this post because there is so much more beneath the surface to my decision - to all of the decisions I've made over the past decade of my life.

Warning: this is a long one.


Lips: MAC's Lipstick in "Romantic Breakdown" (LE) [MAC x Bao Bao Wan 2015] + Comparisons

Yes! The last review for this collection and I have 40 minutes to write it, if I want to get in just over six hours of sleep!!!

"Romantic Breakdown" is the last of the four limited edition lipsticks in the MAC x Bao Bao Wan collection, and it is the only lipstick in the lustre finish. I used to really enjoy the lustre finish by MAC - you can see my review of "Hug Me" here, the first lustre I ever reviewed. A lot has changed since then, though, as I discovered the amplified finish and MAC made their matte finish more comfortable on the lips. The lustre finish - and the cremesheen finish, while we're on the subject - have taken a backseat since then.

Don't misunderstand me, though. Lustres still have their place, and that place becomes evident with colors like "Romantic Breakdown."


Lips: MAC's Lipstick in "Forbidden Sunrise" (LE) [MAC x Bao Bao Wan 2015)

I figured, why not just finish with the matte lipsticks? "Forbidden Sunrise" is the third and last of the matte lipsticks from MAC's Bao Bao Wan collection, the lustre being left to review.

I'm sure I've mentioned before that I don't like orange lipstick, as flattering as it is on me, but something about "Forbidden Sunrise" really caught my interest when information and swatches became available on the color. It seemed to be a brighter, lighter orange without being pastel, and I couldn't help but think how radiating it would be in the the summer...when everything is brighter and lighter and not so damn depressingly gray.

New Hell City problems.

Anyway, while "Burmese Kiss" fell into the 'favorite color of lipstick' category, and "Lavender Jade" fell into the 'unique color of lipstick' category, "Forbidden Sunrise" ended up being my favorite from this collection. Yes, an orange lipstick was my favorite.

First browns, now this! Just wait - I promise you by the end of July it will get even worse.

Lips: MAC's Lipstick in "Lavender Jade" (LE) [MAC x Bao Bao Wan 2015] + A Comparison

Next, I've decided to review "Lavender Jade."

Purple used to be my favorite color. I guess I'm glad it isn't anymore, because there is just something about limited edition purples from MAC that make them highly coveted - these lavenders especially.

"Lavender Jade" is the reason I classify the Bao Bao Wan release as one of the most chaotic, frustrating releases I've ever experienced from MAC. This particular color was gone in an instant at nearly every retailer. By chance I happened to read that a Nordstrom in California was taking preorders over the phone and I thought I'd try my luck. Somehow it all worked out and I ended up with my tube of "Lavender Jade."

One of the big questions surrounding this color that I also felt compelled to ask was how closely it compared to the only other MAC lavender that I own, "Dodgy Girl" from the Osbourne collection last year. For some "Lavender Jade" seemed more of a true lavender, while for others it was simply "Dodgy Girl" in different packaging. In the end I decided I would purchase the color and figure out for myself what the outcome would be. In the worst case scenario, I would end up with a backup to "Dodgy Girl," which is the only of its color that I own from MAC.

Lips: MAC's Lipstick in "Burmese Kiss" (LE) [MAC x Bao Bao Wan 2015] + Comparisons

More often than not I find myself deciding what I should be doing, or arguing over whether I should be doing something or not when I have a list of other things to do. Right now, I should be packing for my flight on Wednesday, but truth be told I've been doing nothing. So I'm going to try now. I'm going to try to write as many of the reviews for this collection  as I can tonight.

I want to get this collection out of the way and move on to the next, which is already just as irrelevant but eh, it's either do it or don't. I don't want to fall into the latter anymore.

I have all four of the limited edition lipsticks from MAC's collaboration with Bao Bao Wan, and I decided to start with my review on "Burmese Kiss," which was the color I wanted the most.


On Power

Sometimes I do these short posts with no tags. When I want to share but I don't want my words to be easily found. Posts that get pushed away by everything I do to forget, to be happy.

Power is a great thing, right? I mean it's made out to be that way. Sought after. And it is in some ways.

Power can be control. It can be independence. It's confidence and certainty. It's being able to do things on your own. Being able to change things for the better. I could list more but all I see right now is the power I don't want to have.

Pets and euthanasia. I know to some of you reading this, the weight of the topic has suddenly dwarfed to nothing. But for any other pet owner, you're still feeling as much a burden as I am. I've gone through putting a few pets to sleep, yes, but the third dog from my childhood is at that point right now. Hell, we even have a highly likely time frame: tomorrow.

I hate it. Who am I to take something - anything - else's life? Who am I to decide when enough is enough? Sometimes it's clear. Sometimes, like with the other dog from my childhood, the suffering is beyond obvious. It's heartbreaking. You can see the struggle in them as they try to greet you, because as much as they love you and want to greet you cheerfully, they just can't.

I don't see that with Luna. But we hear her crying, we know she's in pain, we see her shake as she goes down the stairs. We see the blood that could mean the cancer has spread.

I wish I had more patience. I wish I've done things differently. We never know how short time is until it's too late, right?

I know tomorrow she may sleep her last time, but she doesn't. And I'll continue to know that as many times more in the future as I have pets. I'll know when we call it a day. I'll know when that life isn't worth sustaining. I'll make that call, call that judgment. And I hate it.

It's not right. I don't want that kind of power.


MAC's Bao Bao Wan Sneak Peek

It feels like forever since I last wrote about a MAC collection. Trust me - they've been coming out and I've still been purchasing things here and there from them - I just haven't been on top of my reviews. To be honest, this Sneak Peek post really feels like a waste of time, because the products I purchased from MAC's Bao Bao Wan collection - the collection's lipsticks - are mostly sold out, both online and at MAC counters.

MAC has this obsession with making limited edition products extremely limited, and I have to say the company's collaboration with jewelry designer Bao Bao Wan was perhaps the most limited collection I've personally experienced to date. First the online release was pushed back, then it magically launched online for retailers that were supposedly not receiving the collection, then people were able to order products before they officially launched at one of said online retailers, then MAC released the collection one day earlier than officially announced on its own site...people were placing phone [pre]orders at counters, counters were sold out before the doors opened, shipments were never received...have I traumatized you yet?

It was insane. The true center of all this chaos was one particular lipstick, "Lavender Jade," which I somehow managed to purchase [over the phone from a store across the country]. It shouldn't come as much of a surprise, then, that I don't have the lipstick yet to share with you. I wouldn't even be surprised if it never made it here, LOL.

Anyway, what I do have to share quickly with you today are the collection's other three limited edition lipsticks: "Forbidden Sunrise," "Burmese Kiss," and "Romantic Breakdown." Let's sit back and enjoy those, then, right?


Sakamoto Maaya: Shiawase Ni Tsuite Watashi Ga Shitteiru 5-Tsu No Hoho/Shikisai (LE) + First Press/External Bonus (01/28/15)

Okay everyone, say it with me: Shiawase Ni Tsuite Watashi Ga Shitteiru 5-Tsu No Hoho -

/ Shikisai. God damn.

That mouthful up there, out just over a month ago on 01/28/15, is Sakamoto Maaya's first release for the year of her 20th anniversary, and currently her most recent single. I preordered my limited edition copy back in November and received my precious package the first week of February. As such, I've been listening to this single for a generous month. I should have published this review a long time ago, clearly.

Due to the enormous delay, I'll be publishing only one post for this single, as it would be embarrassing to delay the full review further by splitting it into two parts. Today, then, we will be admiring the limited edition copy with its first press/external bonuses, and I will share my thoughts on that which matters most: the single's content, some of Sakamoto's latest work.



The IceBlock [24]: Snow & Song

It's been a while since I've stared at a blank screen. I've been out of it lately. Confused. Eager. Reaching out for more of something that might not be there. May have never been.

This week Sakamoto Maaya's newest single comes out, and my copy shipped out this morning. I'm in love with the second track on it - "Shikisai" - and plan on doing a cover very, very soon. I might have even had one today except for the fact that my computer is stupid (or maybe it's just me). I thought I did a great job only to find out that Audacity had the audacity to record with the computer microphone. You know, the one that captures the sound of my computer's engine taking flight, for fuck's sake. But I'll actually share the link to it on here once that magically comes together, because I really love the song.

I watch the pile of stuff to review get higher and higher, and I pull the blanket over my head and go back to sleep.

Today it snowed, which sucks. I hate snow. Winter too. On the bright side, my job closed early yesterday and was closed for the entirety of today. First official snow day in quite a while.

What is wrong with me? I have not the grandest clue. All I know is that I want more...and keep trying for more.

Something interesting that has been taking shape is my future. You know, the one that never seems in reach. Things are falling into place - not unexpectedly, but I guess I've been so disappointed with 'tomorrow' that I'm having trouble realizing that my goals are tangible. I have my necklace, I have myself.

I'm trying to say 'yes.' I'm trying to see what I'm capable of. I want things to be different for a change. I want the spring to come. I want to know what's going on.

I sit here anxiously and strain for more.


UPDATE [05/7/15]: As promised, here is the link to my cover of "Shikisai."

I thought about including this link in my next music post but...I don't know. I'm still not huge on publicizing my covers, because I'm shy and I think my singing is mediocre lol. Anyway, hope you enjoy it if even just a little. =)