Woman makes 'emotional' discovery in vintage powder compact: 'I would have cried'
Buying vintage can be a smart way to reuse timeless items and live sustainably. But as one woman recently learned, it can also be a unique way of connecting with the past and the people who came before us.
In a viral TikTok shared by Amber Ortolano (@amberortolano), the self-described “artist, storyteller, and glamorous orb” showcases a makeup compact she recently purchased at a second-hand store.
“I was cleaning a vintage powder compact when I found something,” Ortolano explains in the text, as the video shows her removing the old makeup and scrubbing out the nooks and crannies.
That’s when it comes into view: In the back of the compact sits a black-and-white photo of Bette Davis, which appears to be from a 1940s or ’50s newspaper.
“I can’t help but get emotional thinking about the woman who carried this in her compact,” Ortolano adds while zooming in on the image of Davis.
As the video plays, the popular TikTok sound “How I Love Being a Woman” — which comes from the Netflix series Anne with an E — runs in the background, bringing to mind the many complicated facets of womanhood.
In the comments, others were just as moved by Ortolano’s find.
“This is so precious!” one person wrote.
“I would have cried!!” added another.
“Such a sweet little detail! She would’ve never guessed another woman years later would treasure that clipping just as she did,” another person said.
Many, just like Ortolano, found the small detail to mean so much more than just an interesting find.
“I can’t explain it to its full extent. But thinking about people we are connected to through time & things leaves me in a daze,” wrote one person.
“Truly!” Ortolano wrote back. “Makes me so emotional.”
“I wish I knew more about the woman who owned this vintage powder compact!” the TikToker added in her post caption. “But I can see that she loved glamour, so I immediately felt connected to her.”
As you might have guessed, Ortolano wouldn’t dare toss the old newspaper clipping out. Instead, she said she’ll leave it inside the compact and carry it wherever she goes — just like the original owner.
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