How Soviet cosmetics differed from modern ones. Photo.

Yana SonchkovskayaLife
Cosmetics in the Union were still different
Cosmetics in the Union were still different

Modern beauty standards in the USSR were radically different from the Soviet ones. Nowadays, girls want to look natural, despite the variety of cosmetics in stores. Women in the USSR, on the other hand, wanted to stand out from the crowd as brightly as possible, but the cooperatives had only one mascara and three shades of eye shadow. And it wasn't because technology was lagging behind, but because there was a ban on imported brands such as Dior, Chanel and others.

Soviet fashionistas used to spit on the jar to paint their eyelashes, and to blend their eyeshadow, they mixed the pigment with petroleum jelly. OBOZREVATEL talks about the most popular cosmetics in the USSR.

  • Leningrad mascara

Leningrad mascara was launched in 1947, but it did not look like the modern mascaras that people around the world are used to. Soviet mascara was also applied to eyebrows and eyelashes. The hard and dry soap-based paint contained soot, beeswax, petroleum jelly and stearin. The box came with a flat brush made of stiff bristles.

How to use. To make the make-up process more comfortable, the girls had to spit into the jar. The mascara was terrible and constantly crumbled off, and it was also difficult to wash off: no one woke up in the morning without dark circles under their eyes.

  • Ballet foundation

Ballet foundation was first released in 1981. Nowadays, even in the mass market, there are products for every skin tone and type. However, in the USSR, only three shades were available to women: natural, peach and beige. Its consistency was very different from the modern creams that everyone is used to now, and more like a thick paint - plaster.

How to use. We applied the cream with our hands, because there were no brushes or sponges in the aisle. It was not possible to create a natural and almost invisible skin tone because the foundation was very pigmented.

  • Charm hairspray

In the USSR, metal curlers served as stylers and curling irons, but the hair could not hold the shape of curls all day, so you had to use a fixative. The Charm varnish even did its job too well, because the hair was glued together tightly. Nowadays, structured curls have long been considered an anti-trend, and fashionable styling is done with a hairdryer. The hair of modern fashionistas has a natural look.

How to use. It was better to apply the hairspray in the open air or in a large room because it smelled of toxic chemicals. It was impossible not to overdo it with the fixation, so that light strands did not turn into rigid sculptures.

  • Lipstick "Freedom"

Pigmented lipstick was the most scarce cosmetic product in the USSR. "Freedom" lipsticks brand were available for Soviet women. Just like mascara, lip pigment was difficult to wash, as the cosmetics contained carmine, a substance obtained from the acid released by insects after treatment with ammonia. The colour palette consisted mainly of bright warm shades from carrot to pink. Modern fashionistas prefer cold shades of burgundy, beige and red.

How to use. To save money and not spend money on a new lipstick, women extended the life of the old one. Manufacturers put more product in the drain than the tube could unscrew. Beauties would take a match, pick at the lipstick and apply it to their lips.

  • Olena eyeshadow and vaseline

Vaseline was an integral part of a Soviet woman's cosmetic bag. Every girl dreamed of blue, purple or green eyeshadow, but the effect was quite imperceptible. Nowadays, girls don't use bright eyeshadow every day, but only for evening outings. The variety of colours available in cosmetic stores today was something a Soviet woman never dreamed of.

How to use. To make the pigment more visible, the girls mixed the eyeshadow with petroleum jelly. No one uses the foam brushes that came with the eyeshadow anymore. Nowadays, the trend is for evenly shaded lines that can be drawn with a bristle brush.

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