Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Review: Edward Bess Ultra Slick Lipstick

Edward Bess has amazing hair.  Having met him at the recent Zuneta launch, I was mostly jealous of his gloriously swishy, curly at the ends but utterly smooth, very shiny tresses (which apparently he swears blind is not rolled.  Right).  Not only does he have amazing hair, but he's also very charming and has a rather exclusive and luxurious makeup line, as Sarah mentioned in her coverage of the launch.

Me being me, I was most interested in the lipsticks, which were the first product launched by Bess.  In addition to the Secret Desire shade, which was a PR freebie, I decided to purchase Night Romance, a deeper pinky raspberry, as I rarely wear a nude lip.

Firstly, the Ultra Slick moniker is very descriptive of the lipstick texture.  They are incredibly smooth and silky, apply gloriously moist, and are almost a little bit too emollient on the lips immediately after application.  They do set after a few moments, and you are left with a comfortable, moist coat of lipstick which has a semi-matte finish; there's a creamy shine, but no sparkle.  The pigmentation is excellent; both lipsticks apply fully opaque directly from the tube in one swipe.

They wear pretty well too; for me, one application at seven in the morning lasts through til after lunch, when the smallest of touch ups is required.  I can generally get a whole day (14 plus hours) of opaque colour and creamy shine from one application and one touch up.  Although the lipstick does eventually dry out a little bit, leaving the lips looking more matte and feeling less well moisturised, it's nothing extreme - my lips have never ended up cracked after a day's wear.

One thing I really love about the Ultra Slick lipstick line is the range of shades.  They are all fairly neutral in tone; none of the eleven shades jump out as being difficult to wear.  This is what Edward Bess does so well - beautiful, wearable neutral shades which offer subtle enhancement, rather than a palette of bright, strong, difficult to work with shades.  Here are a couple of swatches:

Secret Desire
creamy pinky nude

Night Romance
pink raspberry

So far, so fabulous right? As you'd probably expect, such fabulousness comes at a price - and at £24 a lipstick, these are not affordable.  They are decidedly luxe - and often described as "aspirational", which I don't really understand (I don't aspire to be a lipstick, nor do I aspire to be Edward Bess).  The question is whether they're worth it.  In my mind, they tick pretty much all the boxes as far as lipstick goes - flattering shades, good wear, comfortable feeling, and good application.  But these are things you can find elsewhere - as I wrote this review, it occurred to me that I said pretty much the same thing about NYX lipsticks when I first discovered those.  So what justifies the price difference?

Firstly, you're paying for Mr Bess and his lovely hair.  You're paying for the exclusivity of the name, the beautifully shiny and minimal packaging.  But you're also paying for a relatively foolproof experience; I think you'd be able to randomly choose one of the eleven shades from the Zuneta website, order it, apply it, and find that it suits you.  So much thinking has clearly gone into the shade range to make them wearable that I really believe you can't go wrong.  And given my experiences in trying to find NYX shades that actually worked with my colouring, that foolproofness is probably a worthy reason to spend the extra cash.

If you'd like to try an Edward Bess lipstick for yourself, you can find them in all their fig-scented glory exclusively at Zuneta, where they will cost you £24 each. 


  1. i've heard SO much about the edward bess lipsticks recently and i'm so intrigued right now; they sound FABULOUS!

    both shades you have on look gorgeous but i especially love night romance.


  2. I really want to try these lipsticks, and do agree that it is very hard to go to a range and just pick one out and it be OK, I have at least 10 MAC mistakes which are supposed suits all shades and they are either a tad too warm/cool/mauve/full on.


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