The last few months have, however, been rather blue for me, for reasons I won't yet go into. I've tried not to let any moping creep into my blogging either, because most people consider this blog something like light relief - full of eye candy and (hopefully) interesting things, not whinging and whining about how rubbish everything is! Because, if you read me regularly, you'll know that everything is most decidedly NOT rubbish - things have been going rather well for me recently! But then there's just the one rubbish thing that's marring my enjoyment of literally everything else. Or is it more that the everything else is keeping me sane? I'll elaborate at some point, I'm sure my readers can cheer me up one way or another!
But, coming to the point, when I am feeling downbeat, the one thing I absolutely do not do, is let my appearance slip. I might find it hard to get out of bed and going, and I certainly don't get dolled up when I'm not leaving my house; but when I do, I always, always feel better if my hair looks nice and my makeup is done. It's like war paint: looking good helps me face the world and feel confident. You may read this and think me shallow, but if you do... then stop reading this blog, because most of my posts are about shallow things like frocks and lipstick! ;)
There are some fabulous images of working girls during the war, with their pincurls protected by colourful headscarves, and their red lips firmly in place. In the UK, it was often considered one's 'duty' to keep everyone's spirits up, but not letting standards slip. Here's a photograph that's actually from America, where it was considerably easier to get lipstick during the war, but it illustrates my point, nonetheless!
From the Library of Congress Flickr
While the British ladies of WWII had to queue eagerly around the block to get their mitts on a new lipstick, to keep their brave faces bright, we don't have any such trouble. There's nothing like a bit of retail therapy to cheer one up in gloomy circumstances, though in this day and age, girls are more likely to pick up a lipgloss than a lipstick. Not us vintage girls, obviously!
But though my lipstick application tutorial post last week has gone down well and prompted several people to tell me they've finally had the courage to go out and buy a lipstick to try it out themselves, it's fair to say that at with the lipstick and liner together weighing in at a whopping £22, MAC cosmetics are not in the 'cheap pick-me-up' category. And you may not be confident that red is going to suit you (which is nonsense as there's a red for everyone - I promise!), or that you'll be able to do the look well enough, and you don't want to waste your money.
Well, after I met them at the Cosmo Blog awards back in September, the budget makeup brand of my youth, Collection 2000, got in touch and asked me if I'd be interested in reviewing some of their recently launched line. Having used many of their wonderfully inexpensive products to experiment with my look in my younger days, and due to the fact that I would certainly never say no to free slap, I said yes; on the condition that if I liked it, I could give some away to my readers. They agreed, and so here I am, launching a new giveaway, cunningly disguised as a review! I have not been paid a penny to do this, I only got a few freebie bits of makeup, and you can be sure that if I didn't like it, I wouldn't be doing this giveaway!
So, on the left is a photo taken after I filmed the video. I'm wearing MAC Cherry liner and Ruby Woo lipstick. I'd say the colour is a bit off, those who know it will say it's a bit pinker than it appears here (or maybe it's my screen). On the right I'm wearing Collection 2000 Paprika Lip Pencil and their Lasting Colour Lipstick in Queen of Hearts. The difference in price is substantial, with the lipstick costing £3.49 and the liner around £1.99. But can it be any good for the price?
I will confess I did put on some of my MAC Prep and Prime, because the lip pencil was quite a bit harder than the MAC, and it wasn't going on very strongly until I did. But with the addition of the primer, it went on nicely (more on primer later). The lipstick itself has a very decent amount of pigment, perhaps requiring a few more swipes than the MAC, although it also has a very different formula - much more moisturising. This translates to a slight shine, but that can be blotted down to matte with a tissue. I applied in exactly the same way as I did in my video, using the liner afterwards to touch up. It's a very good match for the lipstick, and all in all, I was extremely impressed with it. After eating dinner, I did experience a small amount of bleeding, even with the primer; and I think this can be attributed to the more moisturising formula. It's nothing that can't be touched up with a tissue (or reapplied afterwards - which I tend to do anyway)
I'm also wearing Collection 2000 Extreme Colour Lengthening Mascara (though black, which is not very extreme!) and again, I was quite impressed! I usually wear MAC Zoom Lash, and I found it gave a slightly softer look, with nicely separated lashes. I never get undereye smudges (and I do put mascara on my bottom lashes, unlike others) and I didn't with this either. For £2.99, you can't really go wrong.
What I am not wearing is the eyeliner they sent me, which was one of the Extreme 24 Hour Felt Tip liners. I just cannot get on with felt tip liners, maybe it's my eyelids, maybe just because I'm not used to it! We were planning to give one of those away, BUT, because I'm planning to do a liquid liner tutorial, I've asked them to throw in a liquid liner instead. I'll do the tutorial soon. Can't say fairer than that!
So what will the winner get? Well, we thought we'd put together a mini Vintage Face starter kit, using the above Collection 2000 products. You will receive:
- Paprika Lip Pencil
- Queen of Hearts Lipstick
- Extreme Colour Mascara in Black
- Fast Stroke liquid liner, also in black.
So if you are just getting into vintage, or have yet to try a red lipstick on for size, this could be the perfect opportunity! And if you aren't my lucky winner, then I would definitely recommend you try out Collection 2000 for yourself - for the incredibly low price, the products really are excellent, and it's a brilliant way to dabble in something a bit different without breaking the bank.
The giveaway will run from today until Midnight on Friday 22nd October and is open to anyone, anywhere in the world!
If you would like to enter:
- Simply leave me a comment below for one entry.
- Tweet about the giveaway for another entry, but leave me a separate comment with a link to your tweet! If you leave me one comment to say you've done both, it will be counted as one!
That's it! Good luck gals (and chaps).
PS. If you're not interested in slap but you are interested in frocks, there's another giveaway that launched today over on In The Heyday, where you can win your very own Fleur dress! Shona's doing it to celebrate a fabulous 100 followers, go and enter right now!