Second Life Steals, Deals, and Freebies: Group Gifts of Bakes on Mesh Skins from WOW Skins

The advent of Bakes on Mesh has meant that many people are now looking for BoM skins for their mesh avatars. Today, I wanted to share with you a true bargain: the group gifts from WOW Skins! It costs only L$99 to join the WOW Skins group, which gives you literally dozens of system/Bakes on Mesh skins, which works out to about L$2 per skin, a real deal! In some cases, the group gift skins come in only one skin tone, and in other cases, they come in a range of skin tones.

Just to the left of the main entrance to the store (exact SLURL), there is a panel where you can pick up the current month’s group gift, plus a gift box on the shelf below the panel, where you can pick up all the previous group gifts, all at once! Very efficient.

But first, without joining any group, you can pick up The Stay at Home Club’s free gift from WOW Skins, Sonia, which comes in a full range of skin tones:

The Stay at Home Club gift is in the gifts and lucky boards room, which is located in the far left-hand side wing of the main Wow Skins store. There are also a number of gift boxes with skins, if you join the various SL groups listed on the panels below each gift, such as Fabulously Free in SL and SL Frees & Offers:

Now, let’s take a look at some of these free group gifts!

This is the July 2020 group gift, the Malaika skin in the sandy skin tone, which comes in system/Bakes on Mesh versions as well as Maitreya, Catwa, and Omega appliers:

Here is the June 2020 group gift from WOW Skins, the Anita skin in the sandy skin tone:

And here is the group gift from May 2020, the truly lovely Elora skin in bronze:

Now, please keep in mind that for some of the older group gifts (a few of which date back to 2013), there will be some problems at the fingernail bases and the toes when applied to mesh bodies. For example, here is what the Dama skin looks like on the Classic female mesh body by Meshbody:

Fortunately, there is an easy fix for this! Just pick up the free set of Bakes on Mesh feet and finger fixes available at League (here’s the exact SLURL). They come in a wide variety of skin tones, and you should be able to find a close match.

With that problem addressed, let’s take a look at the group gift system/Bakes on Mesh skins from WOW Skins! Please note that all of these skins have the makeup baked in; you won’t be able to remove the eye shadow, eyeliner, or lipstick on any of these skins.

WOW Skins come in a variety of skin tones. If the group gift skin tells you what the skin tone is, I have listed it in parentheses after the name of the skin.

Dama

Janette (Tan)

Ryanne (Tan)

Angy (Caffé)

Nahia (Milk)

Savanah

Creamy (Bronze)

Rosalia

Noralie (Bronze)

Kendra (Bronze)

Gisella

Stella (Tan)

Suvi

Prezione (Tan)

Moon (Tan)

Angel (Tan)

June (Bronze)

Yolanda (Tan)

Kathy (Bronze)

Salma

Rory

Petals

Mady (Bronze)

Love (Tan)

Kesia

Jada

Ina

The avatar in these pictures is wearing:

  • Mesh Head: the Cat Calm head from Genesis Lab (more information here)
  • Mesh Body: the Classic female body from Meshbody (more information here)
  • Hair: Dolly hair in rich brown by Firelight Hair, a gift from The Free Dove (more information here)
  • Choker: the Nefert gold choker by Poison Rouge (a free gift from the recently concluded 5th anniversary round of the Três Chic shopping event)
  • Dress: the Nice ballgown by JUMO (a free Advent calendar gift from last December)
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UPDATED! Second Life Steals, Deals, and Freebies: Second Pride Festival Freebies and Pride Group Gifts

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

June is traditionally the month when LGBTQ* Pride festivals happen in cities around the world, but of course, most such festivities have been cancelled because of the ongoing public health emergency that is the coronavirus pandemic.

Luckily, Second Pride, Second Life’s biggest Pride party, starts tomorrow, June 5th, and runs until June 14th, 2020! This year’s theme is Together, and there’s never been a better time for queer people and their allies to come together to celebrate in virtual worlds, when meeting up in the real world is difficult or impossible!

Many Second Life stores are giving away group gifts to celebrate Pride month. For example, if you join the Luas group for L$50, among the many free group gifts you can pick up in the Luas store is this new, versatile Claim minidress, which comes with a HUD to allow you to tint the top and bottom parts of the dress to any of six different colours, as well as choose one of six different stickers for the front (including a pair of rainbow lips for Pride). You can also choose to go logo-free if you wish!

As you can imagine, this is the time of year to pick up rainbow-coloured freebies! The rainbow flag was popularized as a symbol of the gay community by San Francisco artist Gilbert Baker in 1978. The different colours are often associated with diversity in the gay community, but actually have literal meanings as follows (source):

  • life (red),
  • healing (orange),
  • sunlight (yellow),
  • nature (green),
  • harmony/peace (blue),
  • and spirit (purple).

The store group for EQUAL is free to join for a limited time, and among the many free group gifts are these wonderful, rainbow Jensen sneakers, which come in sizes to fit Maitreya Lara, Belleza (male and female), Slink (male and female), Signature (male and female), Legacy (male and female), EXMACHINA, and Aesthetic mesh body feet, as well as an unrigged pair which you can probably adjust to fit many other avatars:

Fancy Decor has a trio of free, lovely decor items for your Second Life home. Head on down to The Arcade gacha event, and just inside the entrance to the arcade to the left (SLURL), the Fancy Decor gacha machine has a free gift of two different Pride coffee mugs. Unfortunately, they don’t come with a hold/drink animation, but they will still look fabulous in your virtual kitchen!

And, in one of the small white tents that circle the central stage on the Second Pride sim, Fancy Decor has another gift: a beautifully-decorated Pride cake on a platter! (Here’s the exact SLURL so you don’t go hunting all over the place.)

There are a few of the other freebies you can find at the stores at the Second Pride festival. Here’s a fun, spilled-paint rainbow shirt, courtesy of the Saint Elizabeth Catholic role-play university for women (who knew that such a thing even existed?), which comes in both men’s and women’s versions (here’s the SLURL of their tent):

The gift from Lucky Lola’s tent is this festive set of helium balloons (SLURL):

At both their tent (SLURL) and their store (SLURL) on the Second Pride sim, the Gay List is giving away oodles of free stuff from the Regimade Factory Store: animations, dance fans, particle effects and attachments, and a box which, when unpacked, gives you several hundred different dance effects to experiment with! Here’s a shot of one pair of dance fans, and one of the dance animations in the boxes:

RIOT’s free gift is a Pride flag you wear as a cape! It comes with a HUD to change the design to one of six different textures, in sizes to fit both men and women:

See you at Second Pride! Here’s a complete schedule of performers and events.

UPDATE June 11th, 2020: Cat Pink has just released another one of her videos, giving an overview of other Second Life stores that are offering Pride-themed group gifts:


*which, of course, stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer…and the asterisk at the end of the acronym is meant to cover everybody else who feels that the previous categories don’t include them. We queer folk are nothing if not inclusive!

UPDATED! Second Life Steals, Deals, and Freebies: The Cat Calm Bento Mesh Head from Genesis Lab

Genesis Lab is offering yet another steep discount on a Bento mesh head for female avatars. This one is called Cat Calm, and if you join the GenesisLab group for free, you can pick one up for only L$55, a 99% discount!

As you can see, this head has a striking, angular, chiseled appearance, with a sharp, defined jawline and high cheekbones:

The package includes Bakes on Mesh skin in six different skin tones with brown brows, light brows, and no brows options, but I decided to use a recent group gift Bakes on Mesh skin I picked up from Wow Skins instead, called Elora Bronze. Here is what the Cat Calm head looks like without any adjustments to the head or body sliders:

The cellphone HUD on the right is the Material Editor, which allows you to change various aspects of different parts of the head: tint, full bright, transparency/blend, glossiness, etc. The default head comes with an absolutely hideous white, diamond-shaped tattoo under one eye (?!??), which I immediately removed by clicking on the Tattoo button, then the reset arrow icon in the upper right-hand corner of the phone.

To the left are five of the mini-HUDs that control eyeshadows, eye colours (the mesh eyes are included in the package), hairbases, eyelashes, and lipsticks. (You can also tint and adjust all of these features using the Material Editor HUD.)

Here’s what the head looks after I made some slider adjustments to the mouth area, and with some hair (a free gift I picked up at last year’s Hair Fair called Lara Winks):

One of the things that drives me crazy is when stores do not include adequate documentation in their mesh head or body packages. There is a single notecard in the Cat Calm package that mentions a few new features, and nothing else at all! Even worse, unlike some more popular heads, I could not find a brand website with any online documentation, either, which many brands offer. It’s basically trial and error here, folks.

In particular, the included facial animation override is absurdly tiny, with lettering that is impossible to decipher, and I had to make guesses at what the various buttons did. Not impressed, Genesis Lab.

Here’s a full-length shot, after I played around with the body sliders to my satisfaction (I paired this head with the Classic mesh body group gift from Meshbody):

This is a strikingly beautiful head, and at L$55 it is a real bargain.

UPDATE June 3rd, 2020: Here’s another look, once again pairing the Cat Calm head by Genesis Lab with the Classic Meshbody group gift, and using the included Bakes-on-Mesh skin tone number 5 with brown eyebrows:

I have a little test I perform to judge how attractive a female avatar is: I plunk her down next to the dancefloor at Frank’s Jazz Club (as I have in the picture below), and I wait to see how long it takes before some male avatar hits on her. This one? I broke my old record! Less than 15 seconds! And there were two of them! (Yes, I am evil. But I don’t catfish. I just ignore their instant messages.)

I think this avatar look compares quite favourably with a Maitreya Lara mesh body/Catwa Bento mesh head combination which would set you back at least L$7,750 (and that’s before you spend any money on skin appliers, hair, clothing, shoes, etc.).

The hair, gown, gold choker, shoes, and AO were all freebies I picked up somewhere along the way. So the total cost for this entire avatar was only L$56 (just L$55 for the head, and L$1 for the body)…truly an outstanding bargain for a beautiful avatar!


Now, I do not know how long this promotion will last, so you might want to pop down to the Genesis Lab store soon (here’s the exact SLURL of the vendor panel in the store).

Second Life Steals, Deals, and Freebies: Mangula

Mangula is one of those stores that specializes in sexy, skin-baring outfits. (Hey, if you have the perfect body in Second Life, why not show it off?)

Mangula has recently implemented a L$100 subscriber join fee (it used to be free, and lucky are those of you who joined the subscriber group when it was!). This group does not take up one of your precious group slots, either. To join, just right-click and pay the subscriber group panel located behind the front desk:

They also ripped out all the lucky boards, and in their place, they have put up subscriber gift panels. In total, there are no less than 32 subscriber gifts to pick up, and many of them are complete outfits with many options and components, even footwear is included! So you actually get quite a lot for your L$100.

Let me show you a couple of examples.

This is the most recent subscriber group gift that I have seen other bloggers post: this so-called Summer Party outfit comes in a complete fatpack of 32 colours, including the ass-kicking boots, three heights of fishnet stockings, the see-through dress, even a bodysuit option to wear underneath instead of the included, separate top and panties you see here! This is truly a mix-and-match outfit!

The downside to this outfit is that it is going to cost you dearly in Avatar Rendering Complexity—a whopping 326,644 for this particular outfit combination! You may look good, but trust me, you’re going to appear as a coloured “jelly doll” to pretty much everybody else in Second Life. So keep that in mind (it’s all the fishnet and the see-through minidress that brings it up to such an eye-watering figure).

However, there are many, many more outfits that will actually be visible to other SL avatars, such as another subscriber gift, the slinky laced-up-the-back Violet minidress with the high-heeled sandals included! This dress comes in a short version, a longer bodycon version, and just as a top! There are separate, optional sleeves. The fatpack HUD gives you 20 different colour choices for each part of the dress, top, and shoes.

And there are 30 other outfits you can pick up for your L$100. Not all of them are fatpacks, but as you can see, you are truly getting your money’s worth here! Considering that you could easily drop L$300 or more on just a single outfit in Second Life, this is a real deal.

Here the SLURL to the Mangula store. Happy shopping!