Monday, 24 July 2017

Advice I wish I received when I was a Baby Bat

***Taken from my old blog***

The inspiration for this post is what kind of advice I would give to my baby bat self.  What would future Syl tell little baby bat Syl? I am not telling anyone how to be Goth, I simply just want to share some embarrassing stories from my younger years when I was experimenting with the style. Remember, this is before the Internet and we didn’t have the Online resources that we have today! Well here it goes:

First and foremost, do not and I repeat, do not use Halloween makeup. I remember buying white foundation from the Dollar store because I wanted to look dead. It is cheap (well it came from the Dollar Store, big surprise there!), it clogs pores and I ended up looking like a mime instead of a vampire!

It is fine to experiment with makeup but do so in the privacy of your own home. There were many times it looked like I fell into a makeup box and I went out in public that way!

Woolen capes can look nice but do not over do it. Also, they should be worn in the winter, not in the middle of a summer heatwave!

DO NOT SHAVE YOUR EYEBROWS! - I thought it looked cool except the shaved brow and re-penciled look never looked right on me. I tried penciling them by using various techniques but it never worked for me. I had more experienced friends (both goth and non) to help me and I just ended up looking ridiculous. This is for me, really. If you want to do it, go right ahead but I do advise to partially shave them off and then pencil them in first before taking the first plunge! I didn’t do this! This way. if you don't like the look, you won't have to wait for them to grow back like I did! Perhaps my makeup skills at that time needed some tuning but I have never attempted this move again. I never will.

Thrift stores were and still are my best friend.

Learn to sew better because many times a lace trim I added easily came undone.

Crow makeup, unless you plan on dressing like Eric Draven for Halloween, it has been overdone. Do not go out in public. To anyone else, if this makes you happy, then do so but please note, there many within the subculture that kind of frown upon that. Don't get me wrong, I love the Crow. I read the comics and own all the movies and seen them many, many times. In fact, the Crow was one of the first links I had towards the subculture. It holds a special place in my heart and maybe this is why it has been overdone?

Swirly eyeliner is cute but do it properly. Sometimes less is more.

Do not attempt to bleach black out of your hair the night before an important event. Make sure you have ample time to run to the store to buy more bleach or a hairdresser to fix it. Trust me. I did not do it properly either. My roots went white, the rest went yellow, the ends went a bright red that darkened to black. It looked like a science experiment gone wrong. My godfather wanted me to go blonde for my high school graduation photos that was scheduled for the next day and offered to pay me a generous amount of money to do it. Being a teenager, I thought about all the CDs/tapes and clothing that I could buy. I did not even consider that this could go wrong. Being the stereotypical night owl, I did this at 10:00pm on a weeknight when all the stores were closed. I was up Shit’s creek without a paddle because I obviously didn’t have time to fix it. It gets better: The company who did the photos from my school did not offer retakes! My dad bought the photos of me wearing the graduation cap but having a sense of humour, bought a couple, including a huge photo (11x17) without the cap as a reminder to never, ever attempt a stunt like that again.

If I wear a lock around my neck à la Sid Vicious style, DO NOT lose the key. My father was not too impressed when he had to get tools from his workshop to remove it. We were late for a funeral. I could have changed clothing but I think he was also looking for an excuse to remove it!

For the younger kids reading this: Don't worry, the baby bat phase will end. Perhaps you will "grow out of it" as some of our folks think or you may not. You could be like me and dropped out for a while and come back. Either way, with time and practice, you will have a more sophisticated look and hopefully look back at your younger years with a smile. To this day, I still thank some of the elder Goths who knew me back then. Some of them took me under their bat wings and steered me in the right direction. It doesn't mean you should take everything any elder goths says to you to heart, whether it is mean or not, sometimes, it is helpful to take criticism as positive criticism. I know I did and I stopped looking like a mime!

 I hope this post made you laugh. I sure had fun writing it!

Sadly, I do not have any photos of my younger years available but when I originally shared this post in my old blog, I was so happy to share these ones! I am more than happy to put these up, once again as compensation, oh well, we don't always get what we want dear readers!


  1. I'd have one more thing to add: don't try to fit in with group of gothy folk who look down on you for being not goth enough. Do your own thing and discover the subculture at your own pace, taking your own path.

    1. Yes! Excellent advice! Thank you for adding to this!

    2. Yes definitely that too!

  2. My eyebrows never grew back the same when I shaved them off *cries*
    It really is my only regret along my goth journey after 15= years.



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