March 18, 2009

Beauty is skin deep

It got suggested to me a while ago, that the skin I used is not up to speed anymore. I know (female) friends who change their skin all the time, and spend literally L$-fortunes on getting the latest skins. And while I admire the quality, it is rather confusing to me nonetheless. My SL sister Trinity is just like me - she used her skin for ages until recently she changed it for a new version. Since I was honored to give my feedback I know that she shopped around for a long time, until she found a skin she was comfortable in.

I tried a few demos of male skins, but they all changed me. I spent a good deal of time tweaking my avatar. I don't like the majority of male avatars - many look like caricatures, using Conan the Barbarian and the Incredible Hulk as role models. Grossly oversized chests on ridiculously small hips - muscles exaggerated as well. The market for male skins seems to cater for that - hairless chests and shiny "sixpacks" dominate. However my shape is rather small, with realistic proportions. Peter Stindberg is a fragile avatar with a subtle maleness - not a bodybuilder.

What made me most reluctant however was how a skin changes your face. I like my face, I like the expression of softness, affection, empathy and curiosity with a subtle smile. All the demos I tried ruined this.

My favorite elf and wonderful friend Elusyve pointed me towards Hart Larssons PXL Creations and urged me to get some demos of the new "Jude" skin. I tried the demo and my mouth fell open. What I saw was me, but in a new, enhanced version! The face stayed the same, the body features stayed the same, but all of it had a subtle enhancement, a fresh polish.

Well, enough words, let the images speak:

The chest hair (which I like despite any fashion trends) is much finer than on my old skin. The pubic hair is a bit strong, but usually invisible anyways.

Extremely important for me is the face. I remained the same unshaven look. They eyebrows are more defined and my eyes come out more prominent.

The butt on my old skin was a bit more contrasted, but then again the shadow in the butt crack was a bit too strong. With the new skin the shadow might be a tad too subtle though. The arms and back of the hands are more defined.

The skin came at a whopping 2000 L$, including a set of 15 different body-hair options, but only one face. Since I only ever wear the same body hair, I would have preferred a pack which would include all 10 different face options. I might spend another 2000 L$ and get the clean shaved pack.

Despite this minor issue, I am extremely happy with the skin. It is still me, does not change me, subtly enhances my characteristics and features. Thank you everybody who encouraged me, who gave feedback - and thank you Hart for such a beautiful skin!
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