Sunday, 3 March 2013

Beginning on the Vintage Hair & Make Up Journey....

Hello Ladies and Gents,
The other day one of my good friends was going to a 1940s/50s party and asked me for some hints and tips on how to achieve this style. I was flattered that she asked me and sent her an email with lots of useful links for hair and make-up. I then thought I could share these tips with the wider community so I copied the email (minus the gossip) and here we have it! I still use these tutorials today as although I wear it as often as I can I still sometimes get in a tangle - quite literally with the hair - and need a quick reminder on how to get the perfect victory roll. 

So, for the hair....  the best piece of advise I can give (and being tip 1) is don't wash your hair!  I know we all love clean and shiny hair but for vintage hair it makes it virtually impossible to style and hold sooo please don't wash your hair! Dirty hair makes styling so much easier and definitely creates a much better hold. My hair (being fine and blonde) needs a lot of encouragement to stay in place so I usually don't wash it and put my hair in soft rollers. This leads onto tip try and curl the hair either by using rollers or a curling ironing or some sort of item. It is not essential and not all styles need this, but the majority of them do. If you use rollers I would recommend setting them with mousse or something. I use Lottabody which I think works really well on my hair - it does pong a little but by the time it has dried it's hardly noticeable. I don't necessarily put the rollers in any order - I just make sure all the hair is in and rolled over the roller and put in a headscarf overnight or for as long as possible. And the final tip, tip 3, please allow time and be patient! Initially, these styles will take time and with practice become easier but I always allow an hour (this usually is for three victory rolls - see piccie below) just in case one of the little buggers decides to be particularly awkward!

Trio of Victory Rolls
Now the tutorials I rely on are any by Classic Retro Glamour on You Tube. They're easy to follow and not over complicated - simple is the key! Below are some of her links:

'Victory Rolls' -

'Rolling with Pin Ups' -
'Glamourous sweep to the side' -

A great thing about these styles is that you will be able to recreate them without spending a fortune on new items. If you're like me, you'll have tried and tested many styles before and have bits of hair wax and hair grips just lying around. To create these fabulous styles you'll need: a hairbrush (what ever you usually use), hair grips, hair wax or pomade (I use Layrite as it is amazing and takes care of all those pesky fine hairs) and hairspray (I use TRESemme Freeze Hold Hairspray). I use a lot of hairspray as I  like my hair to hold even if hurricane Bill arrives but I know that the rock solid look is not to everyone's taste. It maybe an added bonus to curl the hair first either by using rollers or curling iron (or if you're clever by using your hair straightners) - but this is not essential.

As for the make-up most ladies are armed with a mascara, eye-liner and an assortment of eye shadows not to mention a red lipstick that you bought but not sure how to wear -  so now is the opportune moment to use it and use it glamourouslyAgain the tutorials I rely on are any by VividMakeUp on You Tube (she also does great hair tutorials too). They are clear and easy to follow - piccie below of me after following the tutorial and here is my fav link:

'Authentic 1950s Make Up' -

Vintage Make-Up
When it comes to make up I use a mixture of brands from Benefit to Clinique. I adore the Benefit's mascara and as soon as my eye shadows run out I'm going to treat myself to the new 'Most Glamourous Nudes' set. I use MAC Blitz & Glitz Fluidline for my eyeliner as I find this the most precise to use and get magnificent flicks. I also wear their Cherry red lip liner and Ramblas Red lipstick (as well as my newly purchased Rockalily Sailors Beware lipstick).

The best advice I can give is practice. You don't need to shell out on new gadgets or products - you can use what you have to hand and add items as and when you want. In a short time you will be looking like a 1950s glamour puss and wonder why you didn't rock this look before!

Happy Glamourising!  


  1. These are really good tips.

    Am guilty of breaking no 1 though -I hate not washing my hair every day so use lots and lots of dry shampoo to dirty it up again. I know it is counterproductive and isn't as good as dirty hair but is almost as good.... but yes I agree that the best thing is to practice. I think that is why a lot of people give up before they master it - it does take time to get it right but once you do you can get some really great results with your hair.

    1. Thanks for your comment - dirty hair is the way forward... or setting lotion!

  2. Thank you for sharing your tips! I love wearing my hair in victory rolls but it takes me so long to get them right I don't do it as often as I would like. I'll definitely be taking notes from your suggested tutorials :)

    Vicky x

  3. Fab tips! You look very glamorous in your headscarf and love the make up :)


    1. Thanks - I will be making more headscarves soon x

  4. Hi, I've just found your blog and I'm really enjoying reading it.
    I have a hair issue and I'm wondering what your thoughts are...
    I have very fine but thick straight/wavy waist length hair. Is it possible to style as you have described above ie victory rolls, etc? I won't cut my hair, that's not an option, so I usually just opt for a quiff and bun with headscarf, or quiff with hair hanging straight down. I'd appreciate advice from yourself or readers.
    Thank you,

    1. Hi Helen,

      Thank you for taking the time to read my blog.

      The first thing I was going to say was have a little bit taken off... I think that vintage styles were usually based on mid-length hair however as this is not an option here is an alternative...

      I do love lottabody and it really does help set your hair. I would wash your hair, spray with lottabody and blow dry so it's damp and not wet. When damp take some sponge rollers and roll your hair. Leave them in for as long as you can (over night is good) and in the morning they should be dry. In the morning take them out and as you have naturally wavy hair the rollers should have really taken. Once all removed take a barrel brush and gently brush out the curls...brushing the hair under. When doing the victory roll I backcomb the section on the side of the roll you won't see (I use a denman D91). I find it helps to wrap your hair around your fingers then pull them out and roll so tight against your head and then use a bobby pin to set. Your victory roll maybe quite heavy so it may take a couple of extra bobby pins to set. Then make sure the back is tucked under then set.

      As your hair is so lovely and long the brushing under may not work - you could always just take the rollers out and leave it curly and curls will help with the victory rolls.

      Another method for good curls is by using straightners but as I can't do this method I can't explain how to do this but my hairdresser and friends use this method!

      It may take a few times to get it to work but do keep trying....

      Below is a great hair tutorial that may help....
      Faux Victory Rolls Vintage Hair Tutorial by CHERRY DOLLFACE

      Let me know how you get on xx

    2. Hiya,
      thank you so much! I can't wait to try these tips. I will let you know how it goes.
      Wish me luck!!
      Helen x