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Are You In Control?: ‘Black Mirror: Bandersnatch’ contemplates mankind’s free will

(01/09/19 3:55am)

Popular Netflix series “Black Mirror” is back, but this time with an innovative twist. Rather than closing 2018 with the release of a long-awaited fifth season, the British series premiered “Bandersnatch” on Dec. 28, a choose-your-own-adventure movie in which viewers make decisions that influence the plot. The viewers’ choices lead them down different paths, creating a unique viewing experience throughout the film along with multiple alternate endings. Even for those who aren’t “Black Mirror” fans, the novelty and excitement of an interactive movie, along with a gripping story line and impeccable acting, is enough to make “Bandersnatch” an experience unlike any other.

Slaying the cold: A guide to winter beauty

(10/31/18 5:14am)

As November approaches and temperatures in Houston finally drop, expect cooler winds and dry air. While it’s nice not to  be drenched in sweat every time you step outside, this change in climate also transforms the texture and moisture of your hair and skin. Chilly days may leave your skin chapped and peeling, and your hair brittle and dull. Here are special winter beauty tips to combat the cold temperatures and leave you looking refreshed and vibrant. Disclaimer: Tips are based on personal experience and results can vary from person to person.

Establishing healthy habits at Rice: Don’t “beat” the changes, understand them

(09/18/18 12:35am)

While students can expect to gain weight during their time at college, buzzwords like “the Freshman 15” are not college curses that afflict all unsuspecting victims. Factors like school-related stress and social pressure can very much affect eating and exercise habits, but it’s all a part of settling into a new lifestyle. Adjusting to college is difficult for everyone, and gaining some weight while coping with such a drastic change in lifestyle is totally normal. Understanding that this weight gain is commonplace is essential. 

Tingles & Triggers: Delving Into the Calming World of ASMR

(09/05/18 4:14am)

Ever open a can of soda and feel satisfied by the pop and sizzle? Or get chills throughout your spine when someone plays with your hair? Those experiences are tastes of autonomous sensory meridian response, a new trend that has taken YouTube by storm. ASMR is a relaxation method that induces tingles and sleepiness through visual and auditory triggers that range from whispering, tapping and stroking, to chewing, licking and kissing. “ASMRtists” dedicate their YouTube channels to videos that feature all kinds of these triggers. According to Netflix series “Follow This,” in the last year, the number of YouTube videos tagged “ASMR” has more than doubled from 5 million to 11 million. ASMR albums can also be found on Spotify, SoundCloud and Apple Music. Many people have gone as far as pursuing ASMR as their full-time jobs, earning money from sponsorships, ads and donations from dedicated viewers. Even existing YouTubers have given ASMR a try because of its simplicity and popularity; all you need is a microphone and some household items to tap, rub or do anything else to that will tickle your fancy.

The Chainsmokers are washed up on ‘Sick Boy...Everybody Hates Me’

(04/11/18 8:38am)

In response to the scathing reviews of their most recent album, The Chainsmokers have released a jaded rebuttal with their latest EP “Sick Boy...Everybody Hates Me.” Clearly they’re out of touch. Somebody should have told The Chainsmokers “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” two years ago at the peak of their success, during the era of bangers like “Roses,” “Don’t Let Me Down” and “Until You Were Gone.” College friends turned DJs, Alex Pall and Andrew Taggart became known as the “frat bros” of electronic dance music for their love of partying, alcohol and girls. Their beats mixed over female vocal samples could be heard blaring at college ragers all over the country, but all of that crashed when the duo decided to move in a new direction.

​From New York to Texas: How Southern living changed my lifestyle

(03/07/18 6:01am)

“Are you gonna bring a cowboy home?” and “You better invest in some boots!” were just some of the ways my friends and family teased me after I committed to Rice. I knew moving from my New York City suburb to Houston would be a culture change, but I wasn’t sure what to expect. My knowledge of Texas stemmed only from stereotypes of Southern hospitality, fried food and thick accents sprinkled with lots of “y’all”s. Yet, upon my first six months of living at Rice, I found that these were just exaggerations, especially in a diverse, urban city like Houston. However, there are some notable lifestyle differences that have rubbed off on me from living 1,600 miles away from home. I’ll never forget my New York roots, but I can justly say that the South has shaped me in ways that New York could never have. From how I dress to how I talk, here are some of the ways I assimilated to my new Southern life.

Ballin’ On A budget: The best makeup products at the drugstore

(02/14/18 5:42am)

Sia once sang, “Baby I don't need dollar bills to have fun tonight, I love cheap thrills,” and, while she may have been talking about partying, the same goes for shopping for makeup. Makeup is such a mundane part of so many individuals’ daily routines that we sometimes forget just how pricey it can be; a one fluid-ounce bottle of foundation can run you $50. But when you want to look good on a budget, there exists a magical place that fulfills every makeup lover’s dream: the drugstore. But beware of the low prices, as some products prove to be worth even less. It can be hard to navigate the endless aisles of Maybelline, Loreal, NYX,and many more — how do you know which products will be hits or misses? That’s where I come in. As a makeup artist, I have used products esteemed enough for Kim Kardashian’s makeup routine or fancy enough to carry a $60 price tag. But I’ve also scoured the drugstore, stocking up on products that won’t burn a hole in your pocket. Here are my finds for the best deals at the drugstore.

​Love and sociopathy collide in ‘The End of the F***king World’

(01/24/18 4:39am)

Combine a 17-year-old psychopath and an angsty teen girl and what do you get? A surprisingly touching love story and one hell of an adventure. The new Netflix series “The End of the F***king World” premiered internationally on Jan. 5 and follows British high schoolers James and Alyssa, both equally tortured by the world around them. James is a self-diagnosed sociopath whose only “hobby” is murdering animals and inflicting pain as a way to feel something. Now he’s ready to move on to a bigger project: his first human kill. That’s where Alyssa comes in — the tomboyish new girl in school takes an interest in James after feeling frustrated with her self-obsessed and shallow classmates. James decides Alyssa will be his first victim, while Alyssa determines James will be her first love — talk about not being on the same page. But this unlikely companionship encourages a newfound courage in the pair as they run away from their troubled homes with nothing but the clothes on their back and a stolen car. It’s not long before disaster strikes, and they find themselves with the police on their trail for theft and murder while they deal with their developing feelings for each other.

​‘Black Mirror’ season four continues to question technology’s role in society

(01/17/18 3:16pm)

“Black Mirror.” Whether you’ve watched the gripping series or not, you’ve definitely heard about it. With a new season released on Netflix on Dec. 29, “Black Mirror” is all people can talk about this new year — and for all the right reasons. The series, created back in 2011, takes place in the future, where technology is more advanced and usually comes with a price. The title itself reflects on humans’ obsession with electronics, as staring at a black screen of a device acts as a “black mirror.” This fixation reveals a dark reflection of mankind, whether it’s murder, exploitation or manipulation, all done by the hand of technology. Most importantly, “Black Mirror” brings important social commentary to the stage. Although the series is captivating for its disturbing content in a fictitious world, this world is not as far out as it may seem. “Black Mirror” could be the future of our world, where technology is already overpowering and getting more and more complex. And perhaps that is why the series is creating such an enormous buzz — within it hides the terrifying truth about our future.

Beauty hacks to save your wallet

(11/15/17 11:29pm)

Picture this: You’re watching a makeup tutorial when the blogger pulls out four eyeshadow palettes, three concealers, two primers and a dozen other products — all for a “simple, no-makeup-makeup” look. With advancements in the beauty industry, it’s easy to find products marketed to pinpoint every single specific issue. It’s hard enough to decide what you’re going to eat for breakfast, let alone decide between 20 different mascaras. (Do I want one that lengthens my lashes or one that volumizes them? Maybe both?) Makeup routines are getting longer, with hundreds of different steps and tons of makeup products. But let’s be real — as college students, we are two things: tired and broke. Who has time to spend 45 minutes on makeup before a 9 a.m. class or blow money on new products just to keep up with increasingly intricate tutorials? Shorten your routine and save money for Coffeehouse with these hacks that show you how to get the most bang for your buck out of products that you already own.

Fall 2017 Fashion Trends for Houston Weather

(10/25/17 4:59am)

Fall has finally arrived — days are shortening, temperatures are dropping and the leaves are changing. Oh wait — we’re in Houston. Three weeks into October and it’s still 80 degrees by 3 p.m. While your friends at Cornell and the University of Michigan have been wearing cardigans, jeans and boots for the last three months, you are still rocking the same athletic shorts, oversized tees and Birks from the summer. But don’t let the Houston heat stop you from flaunting the latest trends premiered at last month’s fashion weeks. Here are this year’s fall trends along with ways to adapt them to the not-so-fall weather.

​Fenty Beauty: The first inclusive makeup line?

(09/27/17 6:22am)

Makeup fanatics around the world have been glowing (literally) since the release of Rihanna’s new makeup line, Fenty Beauty. The line, named after Rihanna’s surname, was teased for two years, before finally being released on Sept. 8. It features nine beauty products, ranging from Gloss Bomb Lip Gloss ($16) to Match Stix Trio Face Sticks ($54), and eight beauty tools, such as Invisimatte Blotting Paper ($16) and the Full Bodied Foundation Brush ($34). The line is limited compared to most, including only foundation, primer, highlighter and lip gloss. However, the products are designed for versatility and portability; the Match Stix Trio consists of a conceal, contour and highlight shade all in magnetic packaging that snap together. Prices are similar to other high-end makeup products, and the quality is nothing less than expected from Rihanna. More important than its quality is the collection’s statement; it opens the door to the beauty world for women of every color, race, religion and culture.