How to ACTUALLY De-Stress during Exam Week

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I use to think that I handled stress really well because I’m the sort of person that never procrastinates, manages time well and always keeps on top of work…. that was until my grades in one course started to drop because of my assignments and everything went sort of downhill from there. The stress of grades and the rigid schedule left me no time to relax and slim opportunities for creative outlet periods. I had a nervous breakdown, broke out with acne, my ears started ringing and I was just not sleeping well or eating well. On top of that, living on your own means managing your chores and house as well. The only thing that gave me any semblance of distraction from the stress was really blogging.

I experimented with a lot of different relaxation techniques in the past three to four weeks and these are honestly the best ones that work for me as an anime-loving, manga-reading otaku blogger. If you identify with any of these labels, then these might work for you too.

Ritsu Onodera

5) Turn off your phone, hide your textbooks and grab your tablet or your laptop and read your manga. I don’t mean power read that latest chapter to catch up and then go back to work, I mean shut yourself off from everything else in your life and marathon at least twenty chapters of it. If you’re the type of person who goes on long periods of study time to cram and crack down on your course work, make sure you set an equal amount of time where you just binge read something that is not study material. When you’re studying, you are consciously working your brain to make connections and memorize facts, reading something for leisure that requires little to no brainpower that actually entertains you will help you sleep better. Whether you’re re-reading those fifty plus volumes of Naruto or something totally new suggested to you by a manga hosting site, visuals rather than chunks of text will significantly unwind your mind.

Reading Manga

4) Exercise your other senses. When you’re studying, you’re mostly straining your eyes and this can leave you with dizziness, fatigue or even a migraine. Whether you go out and exercise your entire body, or you lie on your couch just listening to music or you just do a face mask for twenty minutes or even going out for a Starbucks snack, I’ve found that a great way to de-stress is to do other activities that allow other sensations to overwhelm your mind so that you’re not thinking.

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3) Go to your favourite otaku online store and do some browsing or shopping. For those of you who enjoy collecting figures or merchandise, you’d be surprised at how therapeutic shopping can be. You’ll get really excited and start fangirling over new figures coming out and fangirling is probably one of the easiest ways to let all that pent up stress out. Naturally you shouldn’t splurge and go off budget, but a little pre-order item you know that will be delivered to your house when your exams finish, is a real treat to look forward to.

Haruhi Computer

2) Find a video game to play. I don’t care if it’s the original 8bit red version of Pokemon or 3DS Mario Kart, World of Warcraft or League of Legends. I personally like Cytus, a music app on my phone, and Osu, a music rhythm game on my laptop. You’ll be surprised at how good it feels when you get a high score or when you’ve totally slayed an entire tribe of monsters. Gaming is an activity that dominates your mind and often, all your senses. It’s a great way to tune out of the world filled with worries and into a world filled with fairies.

SAO Nerve Gear

1) Talk to someone. This sounds so cheesy, but I honestly think that talking about it and ranting about your problems is both mentally and emotionally beneficial. When you’re locked up in your room with only textbooks and notes, you’ll panic and worry, then you’ll find yourself googling and self-diagnosing your headaches or migraines and trust me, the internet is THE WORSE place for self-help. Seriously, go talk to a friend, you will be so surprised at how much you realized you were freaking out for nothing when you have someone close to you tell you IT’S GOING TO BE OKAY. And seriously, IT WILL BE OKAY. I slept over at a friend’s house this week because of some apartment problems I was having and I realized right before I fell asleep that I felt so much more lighthearted after hanging out with my best friends for a whole night.

Kill La Kill Best Friends

Seriously though, DO NOT PANIC. NEVER PANIC. This stress will pass, these unhealthy bodily symptoms will pass and you will pass your exams if you’ve given your all. University and College exam month is probably one of the most stressful times of the year but at the end of the day, your health is way more important. The most important thing to remember is to breathe deeply when you think you’re about to explode or implode from the anxiety. Just breath, and you’ll get through it. Don’t overdo it, get enough sleep, eat well and good luck to everyone on their finals!

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

Beauty Tips for Cosplayers @ Cons

Hi guys! Today I’m here to share some beauty tips for cosplaying at a convention. Since FanExpo Canada is coming up, I was inspired to write this post for all you lovely cosplayers out there. It can get pretty hectic at a convention and after putting so much work and so many hours into a costume, you definitely want to look your best for all those photographers out there. I know by first-hand experience how things can go wrong the last minute whether its costume, makeup… or that nasty pimple that appears the day before you need to show off your costume so here are five big tips that I swear by when it comes to cosplaying at conventions.

1) Planning your Cosplay Beforehand- If you’re making your cosplay and if you can, try to choose lighter and thinner materials for your cosplay. The worst thing about conventions is sweating through your cosplay from the lights and from the body heat of other con-goers. Walking non-stop for hours is already tiring in your regular clothes. Wakling around with a heavy Gundam cosplay made of wood is impractical and just torturous. If you’re going for mecha, I suggest cardboard or foam and if you’re cosplaying a character, layer your thinner fabrics so that they’re wearable and breathable.

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If you’re looking for some really great cosplay photography of yourself, remember to plan your poses beforehand. Learn your character’s mannerisms, their attitudes, their signature gestures. Have at least three poses that are trademark to your character and think of a bunch of other general stock poses that accent your body lines. Stand in front of a mirror and figure out your best side and your best angles. If you’ve scheduled a one-on-one shoot with a professional cosplay photographer, remember to be prepared so you can get the most of the shoot with the best pictures!

2) A Change of Clothes- It’s always best to keep another outfit on hand… especially if you’re a first time seamstress and your handiwork is still a little iffy, you don’t want to be walking around the convention and slowly lose pieces of it. Sure, it’ll make for some interesting photos but I doubt you want to lose the cosplay you’ve been working on for so long. Also, conventions heat up pretty quickly and you’re constantly surrounded by crowds of people, maybe spending three to four days in your minecraft box costume isn’t the best idea to enjoy the con.

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3) Makeup- Keep your makeup light. I know that when it comes to cosplay photoshoots, you spend hours in front of the mirror getting the right colours and doing the best eyeliner. However, about half of the photographers are there to take amateur “in-the-crowd” hallway photos of your cosplay. Heat and fatigue can melt your makeup right off and you’ll end up looking like a really sleep-deprived version of your character. Keep it simple. Light foundation, some eyeliner and maybe a bit of blush or bronzer to keep yourself from looking awake and lively, not wrinkly and shiny. Also, mascara is an instant sharp eyes makeup tool so it’s essential that you have one really great tube of mascara that’s waterproof!

4) Skincare Kit- This is really important for cosplayers or even normal convention go-ers. My skin gets drier than the Sahara desert, I constantly lick chapped lips from the dryness of the air and my eyes get irritated. If you’re a bit more sensitive like me, then you’ll want to bring a little kit with you. Wash and refresh your skin in the bathroom with water and remember to have your regular moisturizer with you. I like to keep a small tube of lotion and lip balm with me at all times. If you’re cosplaying with contacts, eye drops are a must!! Sunscreen is also a big one if the con photo shoots take place outside and don’t forget to bring a brush for your wig if it gets windy!

You don’t want your skin to suffer during the convention and have to deal with the consequences like sunburnt, peeling, flaky dry skin or dirty pimple rashes. Especially if you’re planning on going full-out at a cosplay shoot in the morning, you’ll want your proper makeup removal products in nicely packed travel sized bottles for you to clean up your skin and enjoy the convention in the afternoon. Having full cosplay makeup on for more than a few hours is just uncomfortable.

5) Stay hydrated!- This tip is probably the most important one. I’ve seen my fair share of ambulances at conventions. Water also keeps your skin hydrated so that you retain a healthy glow when you’re photographed. I always lose track of time in the Artist Alley and forget about my body’s needs when I’m rushing from panel to panel at conventions but at some point you need to stop and remind yourself to eat, drink and yes, use the bathroom. Have a water bottle on you at all times and maybe a few stashed in your car or hotel room. Your skin and your body will thank you for it.

Hopefully you learned something helpful here. I hope you guys enjoyed these tips and if you guys want more of these posts, remember to click like and follow me for new content every day. The most important thing is to take in all that the convention has to offer. Have fun and good luck!!

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

 

Cloudy’s Summer Beauty Favourites

Hi everyone! Today I’m doing another Light Otaku Living Segment but it’s going to be geared a bit more towards the girls. Welcome to Cloudy’s Summer Beauty Favourites! I don’t get new beauty products ALL the time but lately I’ve been experimenting a lot with new creams and scrubs since summer weater has been harsh on my skin.

The first product that I wanted to share was the Advanced O’Three Collagen Eye Treatment Patch. It’s actually a Korean brand that I found in the drug store section of a Korean Supermarket. I’d never tried eye patches before but I thought, “what the heck,” might as well give it a go, the worst thing that can happen is that nothing happens. Your dark circles couldn’t get any worse right?

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There’s about five to six packages inside with a pair of patches in each of them. You peel off the film and there’s a jelly-like mask coated in the product. You lay it right under your eyes and you leave them on for 30-40 minutes (or two episodes of anime) and then you take them off, rinse and apply your regular moisturizer.  Since there are no early classes or early work in the summer, I’ve been staying up super late every night and I’m starting to look like a panda from my new sleeping patterns. This eye mask brightened up my circles right away, the greyness was faded and I instantly looked more lively. After about two of the masks (and lots more sleep), my dark circles were all but faded.

DSC_0012My next thing I wanted to show you guys is the the Cover Girl Outlast Stay Brilliant Nail Polish. I got the a turquoise blue and baby yellow from summer series and I loved it. I painted the blue on my nails with a bunch of other colours from other brands and this polish lasted the absolute longest. The colour seen in the bottle is exactly the colour you get on your nails, so it’s pretty accurate. I really wish I bought more of these because the colour is really so pigmented and I think it goes great with a Hatsune Miku cosplay 😉

DSC_0001The next products I wanted to show you guys have become my new holy grail when it comes to my skin. It’s the Clean & Clear Morning Burst Skin Brightening Facial Scrub (the yellow tube) and Smoothing Scrub (the purple tube).  In the summer time, the heat always feels like it’s clogging my pores. You have to put on sunscreen which is usually oily and there’s dust and sweat and at the end of the day your skin just feels nasty. I believe the morning burst line is meant to be used in the mornings but I don’t really think it matters so I usually use them at night and it just adds to my relaxing and refreshing shower experience.

I got the skin brightening facial scrub first just because it was on sale. I remember always hearing “Clean and Clear and under Control” on TV so I thought I’d give it a try. I bought the smoothing scrub after the wonders the brightening scrub did on my face. The smoothing burst doesn’t have as many little exfoliating beads as the brightening scrub but it’s pretty good for dry skin because it’s a bit creamier while the brightening scrub is more gel-like. Your skin instantly feels refreshed, it looks brighter and it just feels so good! Thank you Johnson and Johnson!

DSC_0002 (2)bMy last product has been really useful all summer. It’s the sunscreen from Ombrelle. I got the hypoallergenic lotion with 60 spf. It’s fragrance free, colour free, moisturizing and contains antioxidants. I’m usually a paler than average person so I burn really easily if I’m constantly under the sun. My skin burnt red after Saturday of Anime North and I think it would have started peeling if I wasn’t constantly using this sunscreen. I’ve always avoided sunscreen all my life even though I should have it with me all the time. I hate how oily sunscreen usually is and how it smells. Ombrelle gets rid of all my little sunscreen pet peeves and I actually enjoy putting it on my face.

It is, to a certain degree, oil because it’s sunscreen but it doesn’t run off your face when you sweat, so it’s pretty great if you’re doing cosplay photography. I’d advise, washing your face, regular moisturizer and some light sunscreen before you put on foundation for makeup. Even though your foundation may have some spf, it’s not as strong as Ombrelle and if you’re cosplaying as someone with pale skin, you don’t want to get darker as the shoot goes on (LOL) Ombrelle is a little pricier than regular sunscreen but it’s completely worth it. I’ve been using the bottle all summer and I haven’t run out yet so it’s a product worth having.

Thank you girls so much for sticking with me throughout the entire long post. If you girls want more beauty-related reviews and tips for cosplay, conventions or just daily life, let me know but hitting like or comment below! Thanks again for reading and I will talk to you all soon!

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?

 

Homemade Strawberry Yogurt Mask

strawHey guys! I don’t usually treat myself to a beauty time because I’m so busy on a daily basis but now that the school year’s over and I’m at home, I have tons of time to experiment and try different do-it-yourself facial scrubs, beauty masks, hair masks, etc. This strawberry yogurt mask is TO DIE FOR! It is absolutely amazing. I’ve done quite a few different masks in the last two weeks and I think that this little recipe is the best so far.

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(This is a great mask to have one while you’re watching anime or your favourite TV series!)

If you’re just interested in reading about the recipe, feel free to skip down to the rating!

I spend a lot of time on Youtube and I subscribe to a variety of different channels from music to comedy to drama and of course, beauty gurus. Every Youtube-obsessed girl has her favourite beauty guru. My favourite beauty guru has to be Bubzbeauty. Her real name is Lindy Tsang and she is of Northern Irish-Chinese ethnicity. What I love about her channel is that she not only talks about outer beauty with makeup, hair and nail tutorials, but constantly posts Girl Talk videos about inner beauty, body image happiness and self-confidence.

g02She just launched her new line of Bubbi makeup brushes and I’m definitely going to be placing an order soon for my very own set. I started subscribing to her when she first started uploading videos. She’s open-minded, down to earth and so very inspiring. Have a look at her website! http://www.bubzbeauty.com/

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Some of my favourite videos are the DIY face masks or craft ideas. The strawberry yogurt mask is one of her older videos but the recipe is GOLDEN. My face looks brighter, clearer, smoother and feels great. I ended making an entire bowl of the mask so I turned it into a body scrub and it also felt AWESOME! (However, don’t try this mask if you’re allergic to any of the ingredients)

yogurtWhat you’ll need…

– 4-5 small strawberries

– 2 spoonfuls of Bio-Yogurt

-1 Teaspoon of Olive Oil (I used Grape seed oil because I didn’t have Olive Oil)

– 2 Teaspoons of Honey

– 2 Spoonfuls of Oatmeal

– A bowl and spoons

– A brush to apply the mask

“Willing to try. Willing to learn. Making life bubbi-ful.”

I hope you guys enjoyed this quick little rant. Try this out for yourself and marvel at the amazing results! Good luck!

– Cloudy

What are you pondering today?