Sephora Play! Unboxing – April 2016

Sorry about not posting in a while, I’ve been having Bodily Adventures.  (That’s just a way of saying that my pain meds are really sedative, and I’ve been sleeping so much that school’s about the only thing I can do when awake.)  But here, have me gleefully unboxing my Sephora Play! box for April.  It’s my first one, so I’m really happy with the whole thing.

My Favorite Things, January 2016, Part 2

Beauty Stuff

Smooth Sensation Body Lotion by Nivea

Most of my beauty regimen stays pretty uniform during the winter months, and honestly, year round.  I follow a 10 step Korean skin care routine that does not change much in the winter months because my skin doesn’t really change.  Still an oil slick in January versus June.  I just exfoliate three days a week instead of five.  No changes from the neck up, really.

But from the neck down?  My skin is crying.  Moisture!  Dear god, moisture!  From the heating to the wind outside, my hands and arms and elbows and legs – they go through the ringer. My skin will actually start to sting and ache because of overdryness. This lotion to the rescue.  For those with sensory issues, it’s not too goopy and doesn’t stay too goopy on the skin for very long (I’d estimate about six minutes).  The other amazing thing is that it keeps my skin soft for about 24 hours.  So I don’t turn into one of those people that reapplies every hour, or becomes obsessed with asking if my skin feels dry or not.  Nope, I just put it on before bed every day, and my skin hasn’t hurt since.

Entertainment

Books

Uzumaki by Junji Ito

I read a lot.  I love horror films, horror books, horror comics, and horror manga.  Nothing’s really scared me much, though, except this manga.  This is a sort of Lovecraftian otherworldly horror manga.  It didn’t scare me while I was reading it, but about four days after I finished it, I started to dream about it, and see things out of the corner of my eye.  That’s the terror of Uzumaki.  It’ll stick in your craw.

Music

Foresight Dream by Yezi

You thought you were gonna get away without KPop?  What, do you know me?  Have we met?

Seriously, though, Yezi’s debut maxi single Foresight Dream dropped.  Crazy Dog was on it (and that was on my 11 songs I can’t stop listening to in 2015 and yes, I still listen to it on the daily), but there were two new songs and one song extended out from a performance on Unpretty Rapstar 2.  Yezi was the standout on Unpretty season 2, at least for me, and getting two new songs from her was a joy.  The whole maxi single is on this list because I love it, but here’s the first MV for the main track, Cider.  The MV’s concept is that she’s on a stereotypical MV shoot and is just over the whole BS of it and trashes the set.  (Also, she looks gorgeous and dear god, her legs.)

 

So.  What are your favorite things so far this year?  It’s already freakin’ February, so if you tell me about any Valentine’s Day things, I’m probably going to try to hit you via internet, be warned.

My Favorite Things, January 2016

I know, I know, I stole it from Oprah, I’m sorry.  You think she’ll fine me for that?  Has she trademarked “favorite things” yet, so that every time there’s a performance of The Sound of Music she gets a million dollars?

But I digress.

Sometimes I wanna talk about stuff in my life that I absolutely love, but I don’t wanna come off as a salesperson to my friends.  (At least I don’t own a trench coat, then I’d come off like the merchant in RE4.)  I figured this would be a cool way to let people know what I’m diggin’ on without being obnoxious and bringing it up all the time.

Home Goods

Holy Crap, it’s Cold

I live in Chicago, where it gets really cold really frequently.  Right now it’s not so bad; it’s 35 degrees Fahrenheit (or 2 degrees Celsius), but with the windchill it’s substantially colder.  (That’s pretty much always true for Chicago.  The windchill isn’t why we’re called the “windy city”, but it may as well be.)  Last week, it was 8 degrees Fahrenheit (or -13 Celsius), and -11 F with the windchill (or -23).  That’s cold.  That’s really cold.  To make things worse, my apartment is the basement of a home from the 1920s that was modified into apartments, where each floor is its own two bedroom flat.  I have a lovely garden window right over my bed … that isn’t insulated.  When the wind blows, I can feel it on my arms and head.  I sleep with two to three blankets.  The cats all burrow around me until we’re a pile of limbs and warmth.  Fortunately, I’ve found a few ways to combat the chill in my room.

Twin Star Home 1,500 Watt Portable Electric Cabinet Heater by Duraflame

Okay, this thing is amazing.  I have one in black, and just aesthetically, it looks like a cute little portable fireplace.  It runs really well but remains cool to the touch, so my babies are safe to lay around it and shlorp up the heat.  I was able to find mine for 50 USD, and I use it during the day when it’s cold outside (one shouldn’t use a space heater when they’re not awake anyway).  It makes my room warm enough where I actually sweat a little.  Bless this thing.

Room Darkening Thermal Insulated Blackout Grommet Window Curtain by Deconovo

I was completely unaware that thermal curtains even existed until recently.  But since purchasing these, I sleep better due to it blocking out the streetlamp that’s by my window, and also because they’re thick enough to block the draft that comes from my poorly insulated window.  They’re also super cute – I love anything that looks vaguely industrial and black is my favorite color.

Smell Goods

That’s what we call air fresheners and stuff that’s designed to make your home smell good in my household.  What else are they, if not smell goods?

Lotus Aromatherapy Diffuser by ZAQ

Before you think I’ve gone all woo woo on you and I’m going to recommend essential oils for your arthritis and that I can cure it by rubbing one on your earlobe, let me explain.  This is in the smell goods category.  So guess what it does?  It makes my bedroom smell good.  Some smells make me relax because they’re so nice, some make me feel comfortable, but that’s a brain/body thing that’s individual to everyone.  I was raised by a mother who loved smelling good.  She always said that we might have been poor, but we could always be clean and smell nice, no matter what.  I still live by that.

So, this little unit (stupid name aside), is amazing.  One fill of it and it lasts a good 16 to 17 hours, so I fill it when I wake up and before I go to sleep.  Five drops of whatever essential oil I want into that, and my whole bedroom smells amazing.  I got one for my roommate as well, so our whole flat smells lovely.  Also, because it uses water, I find I’m shocking my cats less often with static electricity, and my skin’s a little less dry.  Bonus!  I also use the LED lights whenever I have it on – during the day, it’s pretty, and at night, it’s a nightlight that helps with my PTSD.

Cheer Up Buttercup! Oil Blend by NOW Foods

Aromatherapy diffusers use essential oils and waters to function, and there are a lot of them out there to choose from.  The first one I got is a relaxation blend, but it was 23 USD.  That’s a lot of money for 15 ml of fluid.  Then I got this stuff.  It was 10 USD for one ounce (30 ML).  Half the price for double the product?  It must suck, right?  No.  It smells amazing.  It’s got bergamot, orange, lime, grapefruit, and lemon oils in it, and makes my room smell as cheery as that blend sounds.

 

Okay, so this post is kinda longish already, so Part 2 will be coming on Sunday, January 31st!

KPop/KHipHop Songs I Listened to Too Much: 2K15 Version

2015 was a really good year for KPop, in my humble opinion. A lot of people put out top ten lists, but screw that. I can never rank things in order of preference; everything’s kind of a jumble of what I like best at any given time. Besides, what if you’re in a happy mood? That automatically changes the ranking system! Nope, “top” anything lists are silly. Instead, here’s the 11 KPop songs that got the most play from me in 2015 in random order.

1.  “Fire” – Mad Clown feat. Jinsil

You guys, this sooooong.  Jinsil’s voice is ridiculously perfect for a noir “I hate you don’t leave me” sorta jam, and I am so so glad she’s here.  Mad Clown for me is kinda hit and miss, but this song is outta the park.

2. “Chained Up” – VIXX

This is a KPop song about emotional and physical BDSM.  I feel like I shouldn’t have to explain a lot more about why I love this song.

 

3. “Apology” – iKon

To be fair, I could’ve probably put any iKon song here, I love all of them.  As of this post, two new songs just came out, and I could’ve even put them on.  I’m a Bobby fan first (hello, bias!), and an iKonic second.  I love these boys.  People argue that they’re nothing new, but I don’t think many boy bands or groups are upon their first release.  But this song is perfect – Junhoe’s voice is so raw and lonely, and the raps are contemplative and remorseful.  This is what I want in a ballad.

 

4. “Diamond” – f(x)

When Four Walls got announced, it felt really random and rushed.  Sort of a OH SHIT SULLI’S GONE MAKE AN ALBUM decision.  But considering Sulli’s absence and the fact they could add her vocals in later had she decided to stay, it made sense for SM to do this.  And I wasn’t too worried about Sulli’s absence; my favorite f(x) song is Beautiful Stranger, and she’s not on that either.  She was the visual, not the main vocal, let’s be honest.  While I like Four Walls as a song, this banger was my immediate favorite off of the album.  Not only is it catchy as all fuck, it has what I consider the f(x) message: be quirky and cool, because you’re amazing and nobody can stop that.

 

5. “Lion Heart” – Girls’ Generation (SNSD)

Is this song not on anyone’s list?  It’s possibly the most earwormy thing SNSD has put out, and that’s saying a lot.  I’m a sucker for a faux doo-wop beat, and the chorus makes me run into rooms and sing randomly.  It gets stuck in my head a lot, okay?  And the MV is the actual cutest thing.

 

6. “If You” – Bigbang

I could’ve easily put any song off of MADE on here because I listened to the whole thing obsessively this year, but this was the song I listened to the most (I checked), beating out “Bang Bang Bang” by five listens.  And it’s probably because of two things: GD and TOP’s singing voices.  GD when he’s sad sounds like the most heartbroken of little boys, and TOP needs to sing more.  Good lord, his singing voice hurts my heart.

7. “Crazy Dog” – Yezi feat. SanE

I care not a bit that this just came out; we’ve been humming it under our breath since Yezi killed it on Unpretty Rapstar 2.  People complained that she used that line too much, but I didn’t care.  She took that line and made it hers.  She’s our crazy dog, and I want more from her.  Full length album, Yezi.  Now, please.

8. “Bo$$” – Jay Park (Feat. Yultron, 로꼬 & Ugly Duck)

Fun fact, I had to copy and paste the feats on this song because I did not remember them all.  ANYWAY.  I love Jay Park, and the drop on this song in particular.  Theory: if you play the drop in this song in a crowded room, anyone who doesn’t dance is a zombie and/or vampire.  Jay Park is gonna save us all with this banger during a zompocalypse.

9. “Hello Bitches” – CL

The queen is back.  Long live the queen.  Talk about drops – when CL does the first dance move to those na nas, I get actual chills.  If this was a throwaway song from her upcoming album, I cannot wait for that whole thing to drop.

10. “Dumb Dumb” – Red Velvet

I really wanted to hate Red Velvet; the’ve gotten a lot of stuff that f(x) hasn’t from SM (fandom name, light sticks, attention) – but that’s on SM.  I also rationalized that f(x) is moving toward an older, more mature sound; they started on that trip with Red Light, and are keeping it up with Four Walls.  Red Velvet fulfills the sort of young teenager pop slot with SM, and they’re just cute.  I think this song is almost evil with how catchy that damn chorus is.  How are you a teenybopper song AND a banger at the same time, Dumb Dumb?

11. “Closer” – Oh My Girl

Okay, I lied.  I know I said that these weren’t in any particular order, and for the most part they weren’t.  But this has been my 2015 earworm, my I will love it until the day I die, forever in my rotation, song of 2015.  I love this song.  I love it so much, you guys.  I love the MV, I love the choreo, I love them, I love this song.  I want everything OMG does to be like this song.  More this, less Hot Summer Nights.  You got that, WM?