So by now y'all know I LOVE fashion, and love to express my own personal style. Today I'm going to give you a rundown on the collection of items I've purchased from Vixen by Michelline Pitt, what I liked, what I LOVED and what I thought about the items in general.
*Disclaimer* I am in no way affiliated with Vixen by Micheline Pitt or its owners. This is an account of my own personal opinions and experiences, and I have accepted no payment or compensation for my views.
Let's start with the troublemaker wiggle dress in black.
This dress for me was love at first sight......as soon as I saw images of it on Instagram, I knew I NEEDED it in my life!! I ordered it in black and also in leopard and waited their arrival with great anticipation!!
The fabric is absolutely TO DIE FOR. Such beautiful quality dense knit, with plenty of stretch. The kind of fabric that washes up like brand new every time, and is warm enough to wear in winter, yet not too warm to wear in the warmer months. A strong sturdy zip closure in the back makes getting into this baby a breeze, and the matching belt adds the perfect amount of detail without being too much.
Sleeve length is perfect on me, as is the length of the dress itself. I stand at 176cms and often find the length of wiggle dresses and skirts to be a little short for my preference, but this sits easily below my knee without needing to constantly hitch it down.
What surprised me was the fit. I expected that this design would be an absolute no brainer for my shape, but when I tried mine on, wasn't struck with the overwhelming love I expected I would be. It took me a little while to work out what it was, but after a little while hanging in my wardrobe with countless hopeful try on's, I realised I actually could have done with the size down. Sizing is surprisingly generous with this dress, and although I followed the size chart on the Vixen website, due to the stretch in the fabric, to get the jaw dropping fit that you see in the pictures, I realistically needed an XL instead of the 2XL I ordered.
This is sooooooo not the end of the world!! And the more I tried this baby on, the deeper in love I fell with how it felt on my body.........I just know now, that when I go to buy the same dress in Red (you know I will!!) To order a size down for a knockout fit.
Pretty much all of the above applies to the troublemaker wiggle in Leopard Print!
The fabric is slightly different in the leopard, still just as beautiful but not quite as dense, making the fit even less firm than the black. I absolutely need the size down in the leopard.
The matching leopard belt doesn't do it for me though, I LOVE it in the pictures from Vixen, but it just doesn't translate on my body, so I swap it out for the black one, and even mix and match the leopard belt on the black dress sometimes!
Overall, there's nothing not to like about these dresses!! For sure I ordered the wrong size, but that's the gamble of online shopping!! Now I know better, you better believe I won't make the same mistake again!
Honestly, this is the easiest dress in the world to wear! The weight of the fabric combined with the cut of the garment makes it as comfy as a pair of PJ's whilst looking absolutely SMOKIN hot!! The long sleeves make it an easy choice when its cold out, and its a number that can go from casual to classy with as little as a change of shoes.
Thumbs up from me!
For more Vixen by Micheline Pitt reviews, check back next week, where I'll be talking about the Vixen pencil skirt, bad girl crop top, and troublemaker top........don't forget to SUBSCRIBE to keep up to date with all things Jessi Leigh xx
All images courtesy of Elgar Images
HMUA Jessi Leigh's Hair & Make Up Artistry
Firstly, let me begin by saying that I wear make up because I LOVE MAKE UP!!! I love to create, and make up is just another medium for me, like an artist paints a picture, I paint my face.
Using make up I can express different feelings, moods, and even personalities within myself. I do not however, wear makeup to cover things I dislike about myself. Make up is not a mask for me, nor do I use it to feel better about myself. I love my face with or without it, and have no shame in the world seeing me fresh faced. I use make up as a tool of self expression and an outlet to exercise my creativity.
There is nothing 'natural' about my style, and in turn nothing 'natural' about the way I wear my makeup, so this may not be the tutorial for you....... If you are interested in learning how to achieve a 'natural look' post your requests in the comments below and I will do my best to fulfil them.
If full coverage glamour is your cup of tea........ENJOY!!
Step 1. Prepare your base
Read my last post on skincare to prepare your skin for perfect make up application every time. A fresh, well looked after face will make your job so much easier!
Always start with a clean, freshly moisturized face, depending on your skin type you may like to use a primer. Sometimes I use them, sometimes I don't, but my favourite at the moment is Velvet Veil from Miss Kiss Vintage
After priming, apply your foundation. Depending on what foundation you select will obviously determine what tools you use to apply. Some are better suited to sponges, some brushes, and some are even designed to activate with the heat of your fingertips. For the purpose of this tutorial, I am using Revlon Colourstay Foundation in Ivory, applied with a foundation brush.
Pour a small amount of foundation onto the back of your hand and load up your brush. Apply dots of foundation to cheeks, nose, forehead and chin, and then blend out these dots using your brush to cover your whole face. Cover lips and eyes and be sure to blend foundation into hairline and past jawline.
Then using a powder brush or Kabuki, powder your whole face (I'm using Revlon Colourstay Powder in Pale) to set your foundation. You may also like to give an all over dust of translucent at this point.
If you have areas needing concealing (blemishes, dark circles under eyes or uneven skin tone) apply concealer to these areas and blend out using your fingertips or a small concealer brush. Another coat of translucent powder will set the concealer.
Step 2. Brows
Brows, in my opinion, can make or break a face!! I am blessed with relatively full brows, however I still pencil them in! Full sparse or non-existent, I'm a firm believer in filling them in to some extent as it creates a wonderful frame for the rest of your face. I personally prefer to use a pencil, however there are a plethora of different options available from gels, to powders to stencils!
If you are using a pencil like me (I've used one by Models Prefer available at Priceline), be sure to sharpen it every time, a sharp pencil will give you a precise result whereas a dull edge will result in less than impressive brows, and nobody has time for that!
Begin by outlining the shape you wish to achieve. I like to begin at the base of my brow and follow the natural line, extending the tail out slightly. I then create the arch by extending the line from the top of my brow out past the natural hairs and curving around to meet the base line, if this sounds confusing here is what I mean.
Once you are happy with the shape of your brows, fill in the gaps with your pencil (or powder) keeping away from your natural brows, and then using an angled brush, blend the pencil out through the natural brows to soften the intensity of the guideline you have drawn. Use a small concealer brush with a dab of concealer to sharpen up your edges and once happy give another dust of translucent powder to set everything in place.
Step 3. Eyeshadow
Feel free to skip this step and go right to the liquid liner for an 'everyday' pinup look.
Begin by applying highlighter to your brow bone and across your entire lid, I used Miss Kiss Vintage's illuminator applied with a sponge tip applicator.
Then using a mid brown (I've used Brown Matte from Miss Kiss Vintage) and a sponge tip applicator, apply to the lower lash line and the crease of your eye, starting at the outer corner and finishing 3/4 of the way in.
Take a fluffy brush and run it back and fourth over the harsh edges of the brown to blend it out, it should look like this.
Then take a darker shadow (I used Truffle from Miss Kiss Vintage) and a flat eye shadow brush, and apply again to the crease starting from the outside corner, but this time only work it up 1/2 way.
Using a smaller fluffy brush, blend out the harsh edge.
Step 5. Liquid Liner
The thorn in a lot of peoples sides, however a very necessary part of the pinup look. My favourite has always been Face of Australia Liquid Eyeliner in Black. There are hundreds of options available and it really is personal preference and what you are comfortable with.
The trick to perfect liquid liner is, there is no trick!! Practice makes perfect I'm afraid. I have been wearing black winged liquid liner since the first time I ever wore makeup so have got it down to a fine art now, but honestly it's one of those things you just get better at the more you do it. I like to hold a compact mirror up close to my eye and slightly below it, so I am looking down into the mirror, which stretches out my eyelid for smooth application. I start at the flick, some people start from the corner, again its what ever works for you! So, I work with the line of the bottom of my eye and extend that line continuing the same angle outwards, removing pressure on the brush towards the end to create a tapered flick. I then draw a kind of triangle from my lash line out to meet the flick, and fill in the centre of it. Then from the inner corner of my eye, I taper a line out to sit flush with the wing, and finish by lightly smoothing out any bumps in the line by filling in any wiggles in the line with the very tip of the brush.
An angled brush dipped in the tiniest amount of black shadow run along the bottom lash line from the outside corner to 1/4 of the way in will nicely finish your liner.
Step 6. Mascara
As I have very fair, long , thick natural lashes, I need to wear mascara even if I plan to wear false lashes, as my luscious blonde lashes look silly on the underside of my jet black falsies! If you have naturally dark lashes, feel free to skip the mascara if you wear false lashes, or in turn, feel free to skip the false lashes if you get the desired result using only mascara. I, never one to do anything by halves, always wear both!!
Apply mascara to your top lashes, concentrating on the lashes closest to your nose, these lashes need a good coating of mascara as they are what will blend into your false lashes should you choose to wear them.
I am in constant re-evaluation as to weather or not to apply mascara to my bottom lashes, up to you entirely whether you do or don't. Mine are naturally very long so without mascara, I find I achieve more of a doe-eyed look and with mascara maybe I feel like it closes up my eyes a little bit? Either way, for this tutorial I have applied mascara to my bottom lashes on the outside corners only.
Lash application is another practice makes perfect situation, however here are some handy hints to de-mystify the situation a little.
* False lashes should not come all the way in to the inside corner of your eye, this will close the eye up and camouflage all the hard work you have put in to your eye shadow.
* Trim your strip lashes from the outside edge to properly fit the width of your eye, ideally the lash should come 3/4 of the way in to the corner of your eye and blend into your natural lashes.
* Apply the glue to the edge of your false lashes, not your eye. Then blow on the glue for 10 seconds or so to encourage the glue to get tacky, this will help the lash to grab straight away rather than slide around on your eye.
*I like to use a pair of tweezers to apply my lashes looking down into the mirror of a handheld compact, this way your eyes are open, but lowered enough to be able to see where to attach the lash.
* Place the edge of the strip lash as close to your lash line as possible attaching the centre first, then using the pointy end of the tweezers to attach the outer then inner corners.
*Using the end of a make up brush or the blunt end of your tweezers, poke the entire lash line to fuse the lash in place.
In this picture I am wearing Miss Kiss Vintage human hair lashes in Screen Siren.
Step 7. Contour
There is a whole lot of buzz around the art of contour at the moment. Some people LOVE it, and some people HATE it. Also, like everything in the land of make up, there are a million different degrees of contour as well as a boat load of products available to achieve your desired result.
I guess you could say my taste for contour sits about mid range. I absolutely appreciate the artistry in good contour, and the incredible transformations one can achieve when skilled at the craft. The thing with contour though, is that everyone's face is different, and no one method is going to work for every shape face...remember this people!!
When contouring my own face, there is not really much about the structure of my face that I wish to change, so for me a bit of bronzer dusted diagonally from the top of my ear to almost the corner of my mouth accentuates my cheekbones enough that I'm done. A quick swipe of coral shimmer highlighter from the Body Shop across the apples of my cheeks, gives me a bit of colour in my face without looking rosy, and if I'm feeling particularly fancy a swish of golden glow illuminator from Miss Kiss Vintage across the height of my cheekbones and the bow of my top lip.
Step 8. Lips
Lips can be broken into a few steps depending on the look you wish to achieve, but for this tutorial its a straight forward two step process.
Lip liner can be a wonderful tool for altering your pout without the need for invasive procedures, lining slightly outside your natural lip line with a slightly darker pencil than your lipstick or gloss can give you the illusion of a much fuller pout, but be careful not to go over board. A line pencilled in too far from your lips natural edge can be very obvious!
I was blessed with a naturally pouty kisser, and for this reason simply line my lips natural shape, if anything, I line on the inside edge rather than the outside to save may natural lips from looking TOO full. Put simply, I use lip liner as a guide to 'colour in' with my lipstick. Like with your eyebrow pencil, be sure to sharpen your lip liner before you begin, to ensure a crisp sharp line to work from. I have used MAC lip pencil in Cherry.
Then, all that's left is to fill in the space you've outlined with colour!
Lipstick has made a massive comeback in the last few years, with an entire rainbow of possibilities. This, for someone like me is both wonderful and devastating at the same time.....I could literally go broke from my lipstick addiction!!
Due to being lazy, I have a huge LOVE for matte glosses. The idea that once my make up is done, I don't need to re-apply my lipstick throughout the day excites me no end, and also my nature is to greet everyone I see with a kiss, so not branding everyone with an imprint of my pout is another huge plus!
I encourage you to experiment with different colours when choosing a lipstick for the pinup look. Red is not your only option, and I often parade a brightly painted pout in all kind of colours like pinks, purples and my personal favourite, orange.
When talking traditional though, a pinup's best friend is her red lipstick, and I am a firm believer that there is a shade out there for everyone, so if you haven't found yours yet....KEEP LOOKING!!
Here I've used my tried and true never fail RED VELVET velvetiness from Lime Crime.
And there you have it!! Pinup make up in 8'ish easy (once you get the hang of it) steps!!
I love, love, LOVE reading your feedback, so please direct all comments and questions to the Comments section below. I'll get back to you all as soon as I can.
Till next time
Have you ever had the feeling that you are doing EXACTLY what you were put on this Earth to do??
Well that’s how I feel about Pinup…………..I know that the whole ‘scene’ is super popular right now, and that’s great…..it keeps me in a job…….but once upon a time those obsessed with things from decades past, those that teamed red lipstick with false eyelashes IN PUBLIC, those that trawled op-shops for original glo-mesh clutches and nanna’s old girdles, were put on the FREAK shelf along with the Goth’s, emo’s and punks. Now we are awash with ‘Vintage Emporiums’ and ‘Retro Bazaars’, where you can pay through the nose for an old tea cup or save for a month to purchase a rotary telephone.
It hasn’t always been that way……… yet my love for the era from 1940 to 1969 has never wavered. I remember as a child, WISHING to dance in black and white movies, DREAMING of wearing red lipstick and fur, HOPING that one day I would grow up to be as glamorous as Judy Garland, as beautiful as Doris Day or as charming as Lucille Ball. I remember rather than reading magazines as a teenager, I much preferred to admire my grandmother’s old photo albums, meticulously studying the fashion, hairstyles and Make Up. I remember choosing the midday movie over cartoons, imagining myself as the leading lady opposite Gene Kelly or Elvis Presley. I would play my Grandfathers old Sammy Davis Jr records over and over, pretending I was one of his tap dancers, and put on shows in the lounge room to audiences of no one. My friends were not into such things, and I found myself struggle to fit in through my entire childhood and well into my teenage years.
For as long as I have been wearing Make Up (maybe 15 or 16 years old) I have worn black liquid winged eyeliner……ALWAYS. It was not in fashion then, and yet I saw it as the absolute image of beauty. People labelled me as ‘dramatic’ and ‘over the top’, yet I continued to do so…..it has just always felt RIGHT to me. As I grew older and into a career in Hair and Make Up, it was hard for me to comprehend that not everyone saw the beauty in vintage inspired styling, quite often I would have clients look at themselves in horror after I had transformed them into a Hollywood starlet of times past. It took me a long time to open my creative eyes to more modern styling and broaden my repertoire to include ‘now’ looks and stay in touch with the latest trends. I developed quite a reputation for myself and became a Hair and Make Up specialist…..I enjoyed it…….I wasn’t unhappy…..but it didn’t make me sparkle.
I have always known that Pinup existed……..I just had absolutely NO idea of how to get involved. Before the internet it was almost impossible to buy clothing unless you came across a gem in Vinnie’s, and for a girl that grew up on the Mornington Peninsula and never left, the world of pinup seemed forever out of my reach. For my 21st birthday, I decided I would have a girlfriend take photographs of me for my party invitations. I spent the morning setting my hair and applying my make up, and had her take head shots of me wrapped in a white feather boa……I had them printed in black and white and created an invitation to resemble an old playbill featuring me as the star attraction……..I guess that was my first ever Pinup shoot…….I had never had photos of myself that I liked...........but I LOVED these.
It was a LONG time between those first photographs, and me actually taking the step to become a ‘Pinup’…..almost 10 years!! But my infatuation for such things never calmed. I never really enjoyed shopping….I would spend hours dragging myself through store after store, looking for things that simply did not exist…….so I taught myself to sew…….now I would go shopping for fabric and create beautiful circle dresses……and THAT was when my issues with body image disappeared…..instead of feeling wrong for not fitting into the fashions that were available in stores, I felt BEAUTIFUL and for the first time the BEST version of ME I could be!!
People noticed the change in me and I guess it just sparked a chain reaction…….the more positive feedback I received the more confident I became in my own ‘look’ and I just ran with it!! I also discovered that there was a market for my skills in vintage styling……there were other women out there JUST LIKE ME……..maybe not committed to supporting the look on a daily basis, but certainly desiring to step back in time for a day in front of the camera, and they needed MY help……all those years of watching old movies and studying my Grandmothers photographs were about to pay off!! No one my age in my industry knew victory rolls or pompadours or marcel wave sets like I did…..and if they knew what they were hey CERTAINLY had no idea of how to achieve them, add to that the fact that I am also a Make Up artist that has a broader repertoire than a ‘smoky eye’ with a ‘nude lip’ and all the ingredients were there…….I HAD to find a way to make a career out of this!!
It was as if by magic, right around the time I had made the decision to really crack this market, I came across an add on Gumtree of all places, seeking models to pose pinup for a photographer that was trying to establish herself as a Pinup Photographer. At first I contacted her to offer her my services in the line of styling……without the right hair and Make Up, a Pinup shoot is not a Pinup shoot……..one thing led to another and I ended up modelling for her…….well that was it!! From then on I KNEW that this is what I NEEDED to be doing……for the next year I established myself as a Pinup model and grew my reputation for my skills in Vintage styling……….and all of THAT has lead me to THIS…………………..I am a self-employed vintage Hair and Make Up specialist, who owns her own full service Salon…………WHO WOULDDA BELIEVED IT!!!!!! I honestly believe that when you allow yourself to do whatever it is that truly makes you sparkle, the powers that be will allow everything to fall into place as it should……..There is not a single thing in the UNIVERSE that I can imagine enjoying more than this……unless of course I could co-star opposite Elvis with Anne Margaret???!!!!!!
Photo Credits: Photography - Derrierre by JLP, HMUA - Jessi Leigh's Hair and Make Up Artistry, Wardrobe - Handmade creations by yours truly!