Another Fifteen-Minute Second Life Avatar Makeover: A Complete Head-to-Toe Bollywood Beauty Makeover for Only L$150!

You probably already know that my passionate hobby is to create a complete head-to-toe Second Life avatar look from scratch, while spending as few Linden dollars as possible! (You can find all my previous, patented 15-minute SL avatar makeovers tagged here on my blog, including this latest post).

I have had an alt that I have styled as a Bollywood actress for many years now. She used to pick up all the saris at hunts such as the semi-annual ones held by FallnAngel Creations (remember them?), a store which has long since left the grid but continues on in the SL Marketplace. I hit every single hunt, and picked a collection of gorgeous system-layers-and-flexiprims saris which I wore on my classic, system avatar.

Here’s the Before picture of what she used to looked like:

And here are the After pictures. I think you’ll agree that this is a definite upgrade!

This avatar is wearing:

Mesh Head and Eyes: the Freya head by Catwa (a free group gift; the group is free to join, but if you haven’t picked it up yet, you’d better hurry, because this gift is only available until May 24th, 2020! More information and locations to pick up this fabulous freebie are here. The mesh eyes are included in the Freya package.)

Mesh Body and Nails: Juliet by Altamura (this was a limited-time group gift from Valentine’s Day 2019, which I turn to again and again on this blog; at the time I joined the Altamura group it was only L$50, but it now costs L$100 to join their group; this Juliet body is now for sale in-store only at the full price). In order to use the Essences skin below, I needed to buy and install the Omega system kit for Altamura (available for L$99 at this exact SLURL).

Skin Applier: The Sibyl skin applier for Catwa heads from Essences (free group gift; group is free to join; more information is available here). At the back of the Essences store, you can pick up a set of Omega body skin appliers in all eight skin tones for only L$1! (This avatar is wearing the darkest skin tone, E8.)

Hair: What you see here is a combination of a black hairbase from Catwa’s Master HUD, paired with the Pulled Back Bun hair that is already in your Second Life inventory! Just open your inventory, and scroll down to the very bottom of your inventory window to find the Library folder. It’s in Library / Accessories / Hair Design Options / Pulled Back Bun folder. It’s free, completely adjustable, tintable, and uncomplicated, and it fits well under hats and hoods, too!

Sari: This lovely sari is a free gift from the Habibi sim (just join the Habibi group for free, and click on the sign at the spawn point of this Middle Eastern themed sim).

Shoes: red flats by Garbaggio (part of a free sample pack of Slink-compatible shoes from Garbaggio, available on the SL Marketplace; Altamura mesh bodies have Slink-compatible feet)

Animation Override: Those of you who have been following the fifteen-minute SL avatar makeovers on my blog already know that my favourite freebie AO was one that was put out by a store called [ImpEle], called Chubby Girl AO. That store closed down years and years ago, but until recently this AO was still available to purchase for free from the SL Marketplace. All you had to do was add a separate hands-only AO for Bento hands (which were thoughtfully included for free with the various freebie versions of the Altamura mesh bodies) and you were all set to go! Unfortunately, this item has now been removed from the SL Marketplace, but I have provided step-by-step instructions on how to assemble your own Bento AO for only L$2!

In fact, the only thing that the Before and After avatars have in common are the earrings! These glorious Arpita earrings are by Mashooka Designs, a wonderful Indian clothing and accessories store which left the grid a long time ago, but continues on in the SL Marketplace (unfortunately, these earrings are no longer available).

TOTAL COST FOR THIS AVATAR LOOK: Only L$150! (It cost me L$50 at the time to join the Altamura group to get the Juliet mesh body group gift, L$99 for the Omega system kit for that body, and I paid L$1 for the Omega body skin appliers from Essences to match the Sybil Catwa head skin.)

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Second Life Steals, Deals, and Freebies: The Limited Akeruka Bakes on Mesh Bento Mesh Head

Akeruka posted the following message to their group, called [AK] Heads News & Support:

Hi ladies, since we all are in this incredible hard time because of coronavirus, we thought about giving to you all ladies a bit of happiness doing this amazing GROUP GIFT; [it] is a LIMITED head, this head will NEVER be sold after it.

We don’t know until how much time it will be as gift, we will just wait [for] the things to get better in our life.

Guys, I know you want a gift as well but we are still working on [a] beta male Advanced head. Soon more news for you guys!!!

If you are not already a member of the [AK] Heads News & Support group, it will cost you L$150 to join it. Then visit the Akeruka store (here’s the SLURL) and click on either the big poster up top, or the three smaller ones underneath it. Pay the vendor L$1, and you will receive the Akeruka Limited head package.

As you can imagine, the store is quite busy, and it might take you a little while to be able to teleport in. In a second message to the group, the owner of Akeruka added:

Ladies, the gift will stay DAYS so [you] don’t need to rush, and do not click multiple times on vendor, it will not make difference, [the] vendor is processing all deliveries, so [you] need to be patient!!

So, if you can’t get into the packed sim, use a tool like the handy free Teleport Hammer, or be patient and wait a few days. But please, don’t wait forever!

Also, and this is a very important point: Limited is the name of the head, but this does NOT mean this is a head with limited features. This head is Bento and fully-adjustable. The package comes with many extras and nice additions.

Instead, Limited only refers to the fact that this is a limited-time offer, and after it is over, this head will no longer be available for purchase, unlike the past group gifts of Akeruka Bento heads, which would then be placed for sale at the regular price. Once this head is gone, it’s gone.

One more very important thing about the Limited head is that it is 100% Bales on Mesh. There are no skin appliers for this head, unlike previous group gifts; there’s just a folder of system skins in eight skin tones (in versions with and without eyebrows), and a folder of tintable eyebrow, blush, and hair base tattoos.

The Akeruka skin tones have quite a range. Here is the darkest skin tone of the eight (the eyes are mesh, they are included in the package and their colour can be changed on the HUD):

And here is the lightest, which would work well for goth girls and vampires! The alien version of the eyes is also included as an option in the Limited head HUD. Included in the Limited head package is a separate teeth HUD, which gives you the options of monster or vampire teeth—a nice touch, and something to keep in mind if you do vampire roleplay in Second Life.

I must confess that I spent a quarter of an hour tearing my hear out, trying to pull a look together using this new Limited head! No matter what I did, the Limited head remained a stubborn red colour. I was obviously doing something wrong, but what?

You see, I had paired it with the Altamura Juliet mesh body I had picked up as a group gift on Valentine’s Day in 2019, adding the Altamura Omega system kit (available for L$99 at this exact SLURL) to it, so that I could apply matching body skin. (The Limited head package contains a separate box to unpack, which contains body skin appliers in all eight Akeruka skin tones for Maitreya, Belleza, Slink, and Omega-compatible mesh bodies, so you should be all set to go without having to purchase anything else, something I have always liked about the Akeruka group gifts. Other stores sometimes offer a free head, but then you have to shell out for matching body skin.)

What I did wrong was, without thinking, I automatically added the default body-and-head alpha from the Altamura Juliet package like I usually do in setting up a new head and body from scratch, completely forgetting that you need to remove all alphas for Bakes on Mesh to work! Once I took off the Altamura body-and-head alpha, and put on a body-only alpha which was part of a freebie version of the eBody Curvy mesh body which I had in my inventory, I was then able to see the skin properly on the Limited head. It just took me a while to figure out.

So, let’s take a look at our finished avatar!

This avatar is wearing:

  • Mesh Head: Limited head (L$1 group gift from Akeruka; it costs L$150 to join their group)
  • Mesh Body: Juliet by Altamura (a limited-time group gift from Valentine’s Day 2019; at the time I joined the Altamura group it was only L$50, but it now costs L$100 to join their group; this Juliet body is now for sale at the full price)
  • Head and Body Skin: Akeruka skin tone 4 (part of the Limited head package; I bought an Omega System kit for Altamura for L$99 and used the matching Omega body skin applier that was also part of the Limited head package)
  • Hair: Iris by D!va (free group gift located on the other side of the wall behind the front counter; the group is free to join)
  • Dress: Kattie by Arcane Spellcaster (purchased using a free group gift card last year; at that time the group was free to join)
  • Shoes: Sonnet pumps by Hilly Haalan (free group gift; group is free to join)
  • Animation Override: Chubby Girl AO by [ImpEle] (unfortunately, this free product is no longer on the SL Marketplace). This is a nice, simple, calm, free AO with no crazy movements. The Limited head includes a complete facial animation HUD in the package. The Altamura Juliet mesh body comes with natural Bento hand animations built in.

TOTAL COST FOR THIS AVATAR: L$300 (L$151 for the Akeruka head, L$50 for the Altamura group fee at the time I joined it, and L$99 for the Altamura Omega system kit)

UPDATED! Second Life Steals, Deals, and Freebies: A Free Bakes-on-Mesh Compatible, Bento Mesh Head for Female Avatars from the Genus Project

I just learned today from the Free*Style blog that the Genus Project, a major Bento head retailer in Second Life, is giving away a free version of their Strong Face model of female avatar head, which is Bento (fully adjustable) and supports Bakes on Mesh:

The Free*Style blogger, Helena Stringer, reports:

You can try to fight the horde that are grabbing Skin Fair Heads, or you can join the in-world group, which is free to join, and grab the head out of the notices: secondlife:///app/group/b153906f-38dd-0dd6-d327-345bef9f446e/about

They have also reduced their heads by 40% until an undisclosed time. 

Thanks, Helena! I would also very strongly advise you avoid the doubtlessly jam-packed sim where the Genus Project store is located. It will be an exercise in frustration.

Instead, join the GenusProject group for free (just copy and paste the above link into local chat in your SL client, and it will generate a group join link), and pick up the free Strong Face head from the group notices. The title of the notice you are looking for is: Support from the Genus Project team, and the head will be an attachment to that notice that you can click and download into your inventory. Group notices expire after two weeks, though, so please don’t wait too long!

The package includes:

  • the Genus Strong Face head itself and a head alpha;
  • a modifiable default shape (which should be your starting point);
  • Genus “jaws” (I assume that this is the teeth for inside the head);
  • a Genus neck fix;
  • Genus eyes and an eye alpha;
  • a Universal Setting HUD in two sizes (big and small);
  • a Basic Animation HUD in two sizes (big and small), and a variety of animations;
  • a Genus skin applier in three skin tones: Honey, Toffee, and Brownie, and four eyebrow colours: Blonde, Ginger, Brown, and Black (a nice bonus!);
  • an Information notecard explaining how to wear the head;
  • a Frequently-Asked Questions notecard.

As you can see, the included skin applier gives a beautiful result (I am also wearing the included Genus mesh eyes, and I have not changed any of the sliders from the included default shape):

The included Genus skin applier HUD (showing Honey skin, Brown eyebrows)

There are tons of options in the Universal HUD! These are just two of the three tabs:

And the animation HUD has plenty of eomtional moods and facial expressions! Here’s I selected the sleepy/yawning mood:

And this is the angry/annoyed expression:

In short, this is one of the nicest, most fully-featured freebie Bento mesh heads I have ever encountered in my many years of freebie shopping. So go and get this for your female avatar! You won’t regret it. Here’s my final look (I paired this head with the Atenea mesh body by LUCYBODY, which I wrote about here):

P.S. I will add this news to my ever-expanding, ever-popular blogpost on free and inexpensive mesh heads and bodies for female Second Life avatars.

P.P.S. SL vlogger Naria Panthar has just released a half-hour YouTube video demonstration of the various features of the Strong Face head and its HUDs:

UPDATE April 4th, 2020: I forgot to mention that this free Strong Face head is also Omega compatible! You will have to purchase and install an Omega System kit for it, though. You can purchase the Omega System kit for Genus Project heads for only L$99 from the Omega Solutions in-world store (at this exact SLURL).

So I paired the Genus Strong Face head with the Altamura Juliet body (which I picked up at Valentine’s Day 2019 as a free group gift), and applied the free Elvira Omega skin applier in snow (which was an Advent calendar gift from 7 Deadly Skins last Christmas). I was quite pleased with the results! This is the makeup-free face, since fairies don’t wear makeup 😉

Absolutely stunning!

This avatar is wearing:

  • Mesh Head: Strong Face by Genus Project (free group gift; group is free to join)
  • Mesh Body: Juliet by Altamura (former free group gift; the Altamura group costs L$100 to join)
  • Omega Skin Applier: Elvira in snow by 7 Deadly S[k]ins (a free group gift from last Christmas; I joined the group when it had a free group join period)
  • Mesh Eyes: Genus mesh eyes (comes in the package with the Strong Face head)
  • Hair: Aria by D!va Hair (a free group gift; the group is free to join)
  • Jewelry: Daphne choker and earrings by from Beloved Jewelry (free; a hunt gift from a couple of years ago)
  • Gown: Luminessence gown in white by Oi Bae! (free group gift; group is free to join; I’m not sure if this store is still on the grid or not, but they are on the SL Marketplace)
  • Shoes (not shown): white flats by Garbaggio (part of a free sample pack of Slink-compatible shoes from Garbaggio, available on the SL Marketplace; Altamura mesh bodies have Slink-compatible feet)
  • Iridescent Wings: these were a freebie I picked up many years ago and I forget where I got them
  • Magic Wand: like the wings, I forget exactly where I picked up this freebie.
  • Animation Override: Chubby Girl AO by [ImpEle] (free from the SL Marketplace). This is a nice, simple, calm, free AO with no crazy movements. I added a free, separate Bento hand animator from the Altamura Juliet package.

TOTAL COST FOR THIS ENTIRE AVATAR: Only L$298! (L$100 to join the Altamura group, L$99 for the Genus Omega system kit, and L$99 for the Altamura Omega system kit.)

I’m all set for my next fantasy roleplay experience in Second Life!

Happy freebie shopping!