When I was in high school, I was wild about makeup and red lipstick in particular. My fave was called Brick Red by Halston. (Yes, I spent quite a few babysitting bucks on my lips.) Dark and dramatic, with Halston I thought I was the cat’s meow.
Since red is the lipstick color for fall I’m revisiting my passion for the color with lipsticks from Bésame Cosmetics Inc. I was thrilled to find Bésame available through Vintage Blue Moon at the recent Vintage Fashion Expo. The Bésame line offers six shades of vintage inspired red lipsticks all in high-pigment, semi-matte formula.
Bésame Cosmetics Inc was launched in 2004 by Gabriela Hernandez and her husband Fergus Hernandez. (The name Bésame comes from an old song – Bésame Mucho, which means kiss me lots.) Originally from Buenos Aires, Gabriela immigrated to the US when she was 12 years old. Her life has always been about art, having studied fine art and worked in photography and graphic design. Working also as a make-up artist and a cosmetics historian instilled in Gabriela a desire to create a new line that offers women classic glamour of the 1940s.
I spent quite a long time standing at the Bésame display pondering my options. The shades run from Carmine, a light orange-red to Cherry, a bright true red to Merlot, which is a brown red.
All the lipsticks are made in America of natural ingredients including aloe, ginseng, avocado oil and vitamins A, E, and C. Bésame products are not tested on animals.
Looking for a shade I could were daily, I settled on Red Velvet. A rich medium red, it’s flattering on my fair complexion without being too bright. All the colors come in a lovely gold tube container and the best thing? The lipstick itself is in the 1940s style bullet shape, making application precise. In fact, with the bullet shape a lady can get perfect cupid bow lips. The color is rich enough that I can dab it on as a stain and top it with gloss for a lighter look. For the full vintage red effect it applies evenly with one swipe, two swipes for drama but it does take a steady hand and a mirror. Where it goes, it stays – just ask my beau.
Kudos also to Bésame for the packaging. Attached to each tube is a nicely designed card depicting a vintage model wearing that particular lip color. On the back of the card is listed all the red colors with descriptions. The only downside is the semi-hard plastic wrapping, which I hope can be recycled.
I’m having fun this fall with my new Bésame Red Velvet lipstick and I look forward to trying their other products.
Oh, and congratulations to Gabriela on the publication of her new book: Classic Beauty: The History of Makeup, Schiffer Publishing. It’s due out on September 28, 2011.