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A Walk Down Makeup Memory Lane & An Ode To The Classics

HELLO STEREO ROSE!

This post contains affiliate links (denoted by a ‘*’) & gifted items (denoted by ‘gifted). You can read my full disclaimer here.

I like life organisation. I like tidying. I LOVE streamlining. But you know what? I also love holding on to sentimental items too. YES – all those things can be married together *cough* ‘An Edited Life’* available worldwide *cough*, you can enjoy cutting out the s**t that you don’t need, whilst also keeping items that maybe you don’t need, but take you for a good ol’ stroll down memory lane.

Case in point: my makeup collectibles drawer. Over the years these items have survived numerous declutters and continue to make me beam whenever I open it and have a rifle through. Sure they’re not my most-worn items these days, but once upon a time they were. Some were my first fancy schamnsy beauty purchases I’d ever made and caused me to sweat as I hammered in my pin, others I found on blog sales after months of trawling eBay for them. Some items were gifts from friends and family and some were special gifts from me, to me. However they came into my life they all have their own story and I get slapped in the face by nostalgia whenever I go through and have a swatch-a-thon. I can smell the fake tan, heady perfumes and hairspray from here…

Let’s start off with a C-L-A-S-S-I-C. If you had even one iota of interest in makeup in the early 2010’s then you would have most definitely heard about this blush. MAC’s Mineralise Skinfinish in Stereo Rose was first released in 2005 and then re-released in 2010 as part of the ‘Into The Groove’ collection – remember that? MAC knew they were in for a good thing and released it in 2012 and 2014 too, and I remember the hype train turning on the engine each time it made a reappearance. There just wasn’t much on the market in terms of baked, pearlescent powders – especially not in the size and shade-range that the Mineralise Skinfinishes offered – and so they had quite the cult following. My dedication to owning Stereo Rose was so strong that I scoured my Twitter feeds and Blogspot reader to eventually track down this one that came from a blog sale, and to this day it still has a spot in my collection. A peachy coral powder, with a copper shift, I can’t say it was ever my most-worn blush (MAC Blusher in Melba* takes that title), but I still remember it as one of the only times that I had to visit the Post Office depot at University to pick up a parcel and how I kept it on my lap the whole way home like it was the most delicately precious item I owned, which to be fair it probably was.

The majority of items that I’ve collected and keep in my drawer are MAC*. They just did limited edition collections SO WELL, plus I feel like they were the logical next step for beauty lovers who knew the aisles of their local drugstore like the back of their hands. The counters from the CHANELs and Estée Lauders of the world, still seemed intimidating to me in my teen-to-twenties years, but MAC seemed fun and slightly less terrifying, with a price point that my bank funds student loan could handle. When I was a student I would devour all the information about each new collection from U.S beauty blogs, make a shopping list and then camp outside the MAC store in Nottingham on each launch release day so that I could be the first one in store. You know, I studied real hard when I was at Uni. I remember going particularly ham with the ‘To The Beach’ collection in the summer of 2010 and the ‘Venomous Villains’ collection in the September of that year too. Speaking of which, ‘Innocence, Beware!’ Lipstick still remains in my drawer from the latter. A Cruella de Vil themed sub-launch with a creamsheen lipstick formula that’s a nude? SIGN. ME. UP. I’d still buy it now. Ok, I’ll admit that it’s a little nude for my tastes these days, but look at that packaging. Pure comedy. Still love it.

Fast-forward to spring 2011 when MAC released their much-anticipated ‘Wonder Woman’ collection. The excitement around this one came from the fact that some of the items were supersized and therefore guaranteed to look absolutely banging in your makeup stash or in your low megapixel, slightly blurry blog photos. I’d earmarked the Mineralise Skinfinsh in Pink Power as a purchase (those MSF’s AGAIN!) and this purchase really sticks in my head as I bought it off the internet, which back in those days before a world where 1789 ASOS parcels would arrive to your workplace every single day, just wasn’t the done thing. Or maybe it was, but I literally had the maximum figure of £15 in my bank account at any given moment and would actively try and find cashpoints that gave out £5 notes to withdraw every last drop. It released, I purchased, it posted and it was a thing of absolute beauty when it arrived. Just look at the sheer size of it. I used it an absolute tonne and it still looks barely used. Supersized, it sure was.

My list of ‘YouTube Made Me Do It’ purchases, would be as long as a list of possible conspiracy theories for ‘Line of Duty’, but one of the first high-end purchases I made was thanks to Tanya Burr who was 100% the reason why I visited the Dior counter for the first time to buy Diorskin Shimmer Star in Amber Diamond. It first hit in the scene in 2008 and was discontinued around 2013-2014, but was one of the few powder highlights available at the time. A time where contour and highlight wasn’t really a thing? I KNOW. Heck, we didn’t even touch our brows except to pluck them to a uniform one-hair thickness. But this powder compact was the *ONE* to have and I adored the pretty intense sheen to my cheeks that it gave. As soon as I developed texture and pores it wasn’t my BFF anymore, but it takes me back to a moment where my Boots Advantage Card points got a serious boost and that was very exciting.

I could go on and give you the back story for EVERY single item in here, but consider this part one of my ‘Desert Island Discs: The Old Makeup Edition’ for now. I’m sure that these purchases weren’t the smartest for a money-lacking student to make, but the whole thing was fun and ultimately a huge passion for me that I put ALL my time into researching (how I ever got a 2:1 in my degree I’ll never know).  And hey – I guess all that graft paid off, because nine years later I’m still holding onto them tightly. These ain’t ever going anywhere.

Photos by Emma Croman

‘An Edited Life’ is now available to purchase worldwide HERE

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