Monday, January 31, 2011

The G.I. Jive

Doug of Atomic Age Pictures put together this video--didn't he do a fabulous job?

Amanda Lee

Makeup Mondays--Skincare

Maria asked me to talk about my skincare routine, and I’m very happy to oblige! My skin is the sort that is very sensitive and easily irritated, and I struggled with it in my teens and early 20s. I began using cold cream at that time, and my skin loved it—it cleared right up, in fact. I was a loyal user of Pond’s from that point forward until about two years ago, when it seemed that cold cream no longer agreed with my skin. It was back the drawing board then, though I never really found a suitable replacement for my beloved cold cream. A few months back I read that Pond’s had changed the formula of their classic cold cream, and had added a number of potentially irritating ingredients. Apparently, the store brand cold cream (CVS or Walgreen’s) continued to be made using the original formula. Intrigued by this bit of information, I picked up a tub and tried it out—and the skin issues I’d been dealing with (mostly excessive oiliness) disappeared in just a few weeks, and my skin is back to normal once more. So, I wholeheartedly recommend trying cold cream—for anyone who tried Pond’s and didn’t like the results, you might try the store brand and see if that works for you!

My routine is fairly simple: morning and night I apply cold cream to dry skin, massage it in, and then remove it with a warm, damp washcloth. In the mornings, I follow cleansing with a light moisturizer and sunscreen—my morning routine is quite simple, which is a good thing as I am usually running behind (I wouldn’t describe myself as a morning person.) In the evenings, I follow cleansing by exfoliating with an BHA product, and then apply moisturizer and a retinol cream. That’s it—my skin stays smooth and clear and I’m quite happy with the results.

I adore Arcona’s Magic White Ice serum; this lightweight moisturizer is wonderful for normal to oily skin types. It applies easily and absorbs quickly, and it smells delicious too (like grape Nehi—I love the scent, as does my Sweetie.) It’s the perfect base under makeup, and I like to mix it with any treatment products I apply in the evening, to buffer the active ingredients. I’ve already repurchased it twice, and plan to purchase another bottle when I run out of my current—and for someone who is a product junkie, and is always trying new things just because, that really says something!

For sunscreen, I use BurnOut’s Clean and Clear SPF 32 sunscreen. I’ll confess to avoiding sunscreen for many years (having temperamental skin makes one shy away from it, it’s a catch 22 for sure—wearing it can cause breakouts, not wearing it means skin damage in the long run), but now I use it faithfully. It took a number of tries for me to find one that works for my skin—chemical sunscreens are out (as they cause major irritation for me), but most physical sunscreens are thick, greasy affairs—not an elegant product to apply on their own, and absolutely horrid worn under makeup. I finally found an excellent product in BurnOut’s offering—a physical-only sunscreen that feels light and non-greasy and works fabulously under makeup. Oh, and it does its job well—the only sunburn I’ve gotten in the past six months that I’ve used this was due to me missing an area when I applied it (at the military benefit I forgot to apply sunscreen to my chest, and had a delightful red “V” for a few days. Lovely, it was.) Again, I’m already on my second tube, which really says something! If you’d like to try this product, it can be found here; it applies best on damp skin, so I apply moisturizer and then follow with sunscreen right away.

In the evenings, I use Arcona’s Raspberry Clarifying Pads—I cut the pads in half, as they are quite large. I adore these as well—they are well-suited to sensitive skin, and have a light, fruity scent. The other product I swear by is Avene’s Ystheal Emulsion, a retinol product that is the only one my skin has ever been able to tolerate. I mix a pump of it with a pump of Magic White Ice and apply after using half of a clarifying pad; this has been my nightly routine for the past few months and I am very pleased with it.

That’s it—my skincare routine is fairly basic and streamlined. It took me a number of years to find the right products, but I’m quite happy now, and recommend all of them. I'd love to hear your favorite products--what works best for you?

Amanda Lee

Monday, January 24, 2011

Ahoy There!

I apologize for the cheesy blog title, but I couldn't resist ;-)

The military vehicle show turned out to be great fun--I had a fab time hanging out with Brenda Lee and Melissa Moxie. Both ladies were lots of fun to chat with, and I think our booth was quite a hit! Brenda Lee was representing the Pinup Angels, a group of pinups that puts together care packages for the troops. Melissa and I were both selling our 2011 calendars, which proved to be quite popular (everyone should have a pinup on their wall every day of the year, don't you think?) Doug Monce of Atomic Age Pictures photographed and filmed us (video clip to follow soon, so stay tuned!)--I wore my cheesecake Marine uniform (a custom design by V Vintage) on Saturday, and a pinup sailor outfit (borrowed from the Brenda Lee) on Sunday. Melissa and Brenda Lee also dressed in pinup military attire--and let me tell you, a lot guys asked us where they needed to go to enlist! We also met a gentleman who enlisted in 1945 at the age of 13 (he had some great stories) and a spitfire named Helen who was a WAVE--as you can see in the photos, her uniform still fit! All in all it was an enjoyable event, and I hope to be back next year.

Amanda Lee

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Vintage Military Vehicle Show

Cheesecake Marine Uniform by V Vintage
Photo and artwork by Jensen Photography

This weekend I'll be appearing at the Vintage Military Vehicle show along with local pinup models Brenda Lee and Melissa Moxie--the three of us will be at a booth selling our pinup photos and calendars. There promises to be a good turnout of military vehicles and other goodies, including uniforms and other collectible items. I attended last year's show, and had the honor of being one of the auction girls--it was great fun :-)

Amanda Lee

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Calendar Girl

Doug of Atomic Age Pictures and I put together a classic one-page calendar for 2011 (his talented sister Donna Monce was the graphic designer), and I realized I never mentioned it on my blog! So, although January is almost through, there are still 11 months in which one can use and enjoy this calendar ;-) We're selling them for a mere $10 (plus S&H), so if you'd like one, do let me know!

Amanda Lee

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

A Little Marilyn

A few shots from my latest photo shoot with Matt Carson. For this shoot we went to the Tumacacori Mission ruins, which are located about 40 miles outside of Tucson, and I have to say the ruins are amazing! The history behind the mission is incredibly interesting, and the area where they are located is incredibly peaceful.

My outfit for this shoot was a copy of the costume Marilyn Monroe wore in the movie "Bus Stop". V Vintage did a wonderful job creating it; the peasant blouse was done up in olive green crepe-backed satin with an emerald green lace overlay, and the skirt was made in a satin with a bit of stretch for wearing ease. I highly recommend this seamstress, as she can create anything you can dream up, and is a delight to work with as well.

The purse and necklaces came from Matilda's Vintage Closet; seamed fishnets and my Remix platforms completed the look.

Amanda Lee

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Little Red White and Blue

I thought I’d share a few photos from Saturday’s benefit show—these were taken by my talented photographer friend Matt Carson. The event was well-done; the band started a bit late as the other portions of the benefit went over the planned time, but it was a very nice tribute to the military. The people who put on the show were incredibly nice and appreciative, and we were glad we could help out!

Amanda Lee

Monday, January 17, 2011

Makeup Mondays—Kryolan Cream Liner

I’ve been a long-time user of Joe Blasco Ultamattes, as these liners work very well for me—both Midnight Brown and Eddie Leonard are excellent rich brown shades well suited for fair blonde complexions, and the formula is wonderfully water resistant and non-irritating to my sensitive eyes. However, when I bought a new tube of my favorite foundation, Kryolan TV Paint Stick, I couldn’t resist trying out a pot of the cream liner (I was almost out of my current liner, so it was a justifiable impulse buy.) I’m glad I did—the color Cacao is a lovely chocolate brown (a wonderful shade for pale blondes and redheads), and the formula has proven to be just as budgeproof, if not more so, than my favorite Ultamattes. I’ve been wearing this liner for the past several days, and it wears like iron—no smudging or fading, and best of all, no irritation (I have very sensitive eyes, and many products cause them to water like mad.) The texture is that of a firm gel/cream, and as it is highly pigmented, you only need a little to create that sought-after vintage cat eye. I apply it with a small sable filbert brush (Cinema Secrets #2)—the formula is creamy enough to apply smoothly, but not so creamy as to smear about as you apply it (like the formula of Clinique and Bobbi Brown’s cream liner options—I found both of these to be a royal pain to apply.) I have to say that Kryolan’s cream liner may be edging out my standby! So, if you are in the market for a new eyeliner, or looking to try a product that delivers what it promises, I highly recommend checking this one out!

Amanda Lee

Friday, January 14, 2011

Second Annual Salute to American Veterans

This Saturday, my Sweetie's band will be performing at the 2nd annual Stand Up and Stand Proud Salute to American Veterans event. The event, which supports Arizona StandDown (an organization that helps homeless veterans) is being held from 10-2 at The Mesa Marketplace. The Heymakers will perform at noon, and will be followed by the Buddy Holly tribute band Come Back Buddy. Tickets are only $10, and all proceeds benefit Arizona StandDown--if you live in the valley, make sure you come out to the show! You'll be supporting our veterans while listening to some great rockabilly music!

Amanda Lee

Monday, January 10, 2011

Hawaiian Honey

Doug Monce of Atomic Age Pictures and I worked on a series of Hawaiian-themed shots--as you can see, we were very much influenced by Varga's Hawaiian girls! In this set, I am wearing a WWII-era hula skirt made from parachute cord, which came from the museum collection of Matilda's Closet. A couple of well-placed leis, 1940s wooden hibiscus earrings, and a pink and yellow tropical flower in my hair complete the look (I'm wearing LipSense in Blu-Red too). This is the first in our new series of cheesecake images--I hope you like these as much as we do :-)

Amanda Lee

One of the pinups that inspired us

Sticking to those New Year Resolutions--eBay Goodies

1940s purple and hot pink crepe evening gown

Well, I pledged that I would organize my clothing collection in 2011, and here's my first round of eBay listings! I've listed a little something for everyone--from a 1940s glam evening gown to a classic 40s day dress, with a couple of stellar western pieces for good measure. Let me know if you see something you like--more items to follow in the coming weeks ;-)

Swinglindy's Auctions


Amanda Lee

Aqua and brown pinstriped 1940s day dress

1940s-50s dusty pink and forest green western skirt used in television work

My best gal pal Jere helped model this stunning turquoise western suit by Ranch Maid

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Book Review: Mildred Pierced

I love to read, and often spend my lunch hour with my nose in a good page turner. A few months ago I stumbled on a series of hardboiled-style detective novels set in 1940s Hollywood. Written by Stuart M. Kaminsky, the books star a detective named Toby Peters who always manages to find himself working on celebrity cases, none of which could ever be called run of the mill or straightforward. Mildred Pierced, the second to last book in the series, involves Joan Crawford, who is about to start working on a movie that she knows will put her back at the top—Mildred Pierce. Unfortunately, Ms. Crawford is the only witnesses to the death of inept dentist Sheldon Minck’s, wife—who just so happens to have been shot with an arrow while Sheldon is out practicing his archery skills. Ms. Crawford wants Toby Peters to get to the bottom of the mystery while keeping her name out of the papers—for such publicity would definitely put a wrench in her career plans! Sheldon, who rents a tiny space in his dentist office (torture chamber is the better term for it) to Toby, wants him to prove his innocence even though he was at the scene of the crime with crossbow in hand. The end result is a witty tale with just the right amount of twists and turns.

I find the Toby Peters series to be a fast reads with snappy, creative storylines. Kaminsky is an author who knows his history, especially Hollywood history, and that makes the series a good pick for retro lovers. I enjoy his detailed descriptions of people and places, which serve to bring the characters and stories to life very vividly, and I definitely appreciate an author who loves the past as much as I do!

Amanda Lee

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Fashion Inspiration: Paulette Goddard in "The Cat and the Canary"

A couple of weeks ago, my Sweetie and I watched the 1939 movie "The Cat and the Canary," starring Paulette Goddard and Bob Hope. This lighthearted spooky comedy was a delight to watch, and not only because of Bob Hope's fantastic wry sense of humor (which never disappoints, I have to say.) Paulette was a lovely actress and is an absolute vision in this film, and oh, what a wardrobe her character has! She is outfitted in everything from snappily coordinated daywear to a rich, creamy satin nightgown, which meant I spent the entire movie wishing her outfits were in my closet! If you haven't seen this movie, I highly recommend it--the storyline is cute and entertaining, and I'll bet you'll be wishing her wardrobe was yours too!


Amanda Lee

The keyhole neckline on this dress reminded me of Able Grable's "For the Boys" frock

This gingham frock was one of my favorites--I wonder what color it was?

Monday, January 3, 2011

Ruby Red Lips

I'm wearing Lip Ink Energy Red in this photo

I’ve mentioned before that I’ve been a long-time fan of Lip Ink liquid lipstick, and Riika’s comment on another post inspired me to write a full-fledged review about it.

I’ve been a loyal user of Lip Ink for three years, and it is pretty much the only lipstick I wear anymore. Though I do adore Besame’s lipstick (Red Hot Red is my fave shade), and though I admit to the occasional impulse purchase tubes of ‘regular’ lipstick (just bought Revlon’s vintage-style tube of Fire n’Ice), I almost always reach for my Lip Ink! I love not worrying about my lipstick smearing, bleeding, or transferring to my coffee cup (and of course my Sweetie appreciates the fact that he can kiss me and not end up wearing lipstick too!) Over the years I had tried a number of indelible lipsticks—Cover Girl Outlast, MAC Pro Longwear, Revlon Colorstay—and was never very pleased with any of them. For one thing, they felt like I’d just applied a thick layer of lacquer to my lips. They also cracked, peeled, and dried to a lighter shade (and for someone who is addicted to bright red lipstick, having your color fade to a dull shade of red just won’t do.) On a whim I tried Lip Ink, and found it to be a true stain—but one that was comfortable to wear. The color stays true, it doesn’t crack or fade, and it’s non-drying as well (I find it actually heals dry lips.) I also find that it photographs like regular lipstick (instead of looking like you’ve applied a coat of paint to your lips), and so I wear it for nearly all of my photo shoots and fashion shows (it’s fantastic to not have to worry about smearing your lipstick on your clothing.) My favorite shade is Energy Red, a rich 1940s shade that I think of as very “Hedy Lamarr”, though I am also fond of Red (a bright pink-based red), Hot Pink (a shocking pink shade), Fuchsia (a deep raspberry shade), and Coral (a bright, true coral shade).

Lip Ink is a two-product lipstick—you apply a layer of color, let it dry for a few moments, and then top with a coat of their Lip Shine gloss. If you decide to try Lip Ink, I do recommend picking up a tube of Lip Shine as well—I love the LemonMint flavor—but unlike the other type of long-wearing lipsticks, you don’t need to reply it multiple times over the day to keep the color from cracking off. It just moisturizes and adds a nice shine to the lips. Lip Ink also sells a remover for their product, as most cleansers won’t take it off—but I discovered that plain ol’ rubbing alcohol removes it with ease. I realize that this sounds very unglamorous and drying to boot, but as I said above, there is something in the color that keeps my lips nice and soft (and my lips definitely are on the dry side to begin with), and I’d rather save my pennies for another tube of color or shine.
Lipsense Blu-Red

Now, I will say that it appears as though Lip Ink has changed their formula slightly, as the lipstick isn’t quite as indelible as it was when I first started wearing it. I still prefer it to regular lipstick hands down, but I do wish they would go back to the old formula! This led me to another product though, a similar liquid lip color made by Lipsense. I ordered a tube of Blu-Red over the holidays to compare (I read that this is Christina Aguilera’s favorite), and I find that in terms of staying power, Lipsense beats Lip Ink soundly. Applied once in the morning, I don’t need to touch it up all day, though I do refresh the gloss after lunch. There are two things that I don’t like as well though—the smell/taste (a horrid fakey rose scent that unfortunately lingers), and the finish (it dries to a very tacky finish, though the gloss remedies this fairly easily.) But on the whole I’ve been very pleased and will most likely purchase this again (I’d like to try the Cranberry shade next, I think.)

Lip Ink Red

So, that’s my two cents on this subject—I’d highly recommend either of these products to anyone on the hunt for a long-wearing red lipstick!

Amanda Lee

Sunday, January 2, 2011

We Can Do It!

A few months ago I worked with Hardwood Pinups on this iconic Rosie the Riveter image--he was doing a series of Rosies and asked if I wanted to be one of the models. Of course I said yes, as the "We Can Do It" illustration is one of the most enduring images of WWII, and I had never done a shoot with this theme. And of course, Mr. Hardwood is a fantastic and fun photographer to work with, so I was more than happy to work with him again! Last week he sent me the finished image, and ironically, it turns out the woman who was the face of the original Rosie had just passed away. I am sharing this picture as a tribute to her and all of the other Rosies who served our country.

Amanda Lee

Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Year's Wishes

Happy New Year to all my followers--I wish all of you a wonderful and exciting 2011!

My Sweetie and I celebrated in a low-key fashion last night; his band was booked to play until 10:30 out at Pinnacle Peak Patio, and so we weren't able to take on the town until it was almost the new year. We did have a nice dinner at FEZ, and I got to wear my favorite Christmas gift from my Sweetie, Vivien of Holloway's aubergine satin sarong :-)

I have two resolutions for the new year--the first is that I aim to update my blog on a daily basis, or at least several times a week. I'm working on some weekly ideas that should make my blog more interesting for my readers, and I'm looking forward to posting each week! My talented sis has offered to help me by taking photos for me, which will be fab as my forte is really in front of the camera, instead of behind it! Also, my brother-in-law was able to help with some computer issues that were it making it a major pain to upload photos to my posts--a big thank you to him!

My second resolution is to really work at organzing my collection. I'm sure my collector followers can relate--when you get into collecting vintage clothing, knick-knacks or anything else, at some point your collection outgrows its home! So, my goal is to get my collection in order, paring down what needs to (read: keep a lookout for the eBay auctions I'll be posting--I'll be parting with some goodies) and figuring the best way to store the rest. Wish me luck, readers--I'm gonna need it! ;-)

What are your resolutions for 2011?

Amanda Lee