Dec 302013
 

Bess black sea foundation comparison02

This review is an accompaniment to The Beauty Lookbook’s extensive look at Edward Bess Black Sea Mousse Foundation. This was sold in a set with a foundation brush exclusively on QVC.com, and sold out very quickly. I’m hoping that it will be offered again, either on QVC or in another venue. This foundation is unusual in a few respects, and so I thought it was worth posting a few words in case it becomes available again (I don’t have any formal word either way).

Bess black sea foundation comparison04

Because her review is so comprehensive, I won’t repeat everything that Sabrina at The Beauty Look Book has already said.  As Sabrina notes, she was gifted all three shades of the foundation. Kind soul that she is, and I mean that sincerely, she in turn gifted the lightest one in 01 Fair to me so that I could try it out. I’m so glad that she did because I’ve never encountered such a full coverage foundation before which feels like absolutely nothing on my skin.

Bess black sea foundation comparison10

This foundation is idea for imperfect skin, as it has anti-aging benefits. No concealers required with this formula. It covers absolutely everything, but aside from a refreshing feeling when it is first applied, it becomes quite weightless. It gave me a beautiful satin finish which lasted all day. I got a bit of breakthrough glow in the afternoon, but not nearly as much as some foundations. By the way, the included brush is a full-sized, synthetic fibre, gorgeous foundation brush that is right up there with Chanel and other premium brands.

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Brush from the side, pictured below, to show you that this brush knows how to get into all of the contours of the face.

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I applaud Edward Bess for including the brush. The first time I tried the foundation, I used my usual finger-application technique. Then out of the corner of my eye, I noticed this beautiful brush sitting on my counter saying “hint, hint, don’t you want to buff that in a bit more?” I found that using a brush to do so really gave me a much better, poreless textures. The brush was also useful for getting an invisible edge near my hairline.  So my advice is, use the brush if only to buff it in.  Ingredient list (click to enlarge):

Edward bess black sea ingredients Although Fair 01 looks a little dark in the pot, and a little deep in my arm swatch, it really seemed to color adjust to my actual skin tone when applied to my face.

Bess black sea foundation comparison1

Overall, I believe there are a lot of individuals who are looking for a very natural, very lightweight high coverage foundation. Most high coverage foundations look (and feel) like a mask. Edward Bess’ Black Sea Mousse foundation gives high coverage without the need to build up the product, and looked very skin like. The fact that it has skincare ingredients is a nice plus, although I’ll continue to use my regular routine. If applied carefully, this could go to medium and even light coverage if you use very very little because it spreads so nicely.  If this becomes available again, it’s worth checking out if these are the criteria which you have for a great, long wearing foundation. If you do get it, don’t follow my example–use your brush! 

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Jan 052013
 

Edward Bess Eau La La

Lauren at the Edward Bess counter at Bergdorf Goodman, New York City, was kind enough to send me a small sample of the new Edward Bess fragrance, Eau La La ($125/0.25 oz.). The fragrance was inspired by Cafe Makeup’s favorite city in the world, Paris.

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Edward Bess Eau La La is infused with frankincense, fresh gardenia, and amber. The scent is complex and harmonious. I love incense notes in fragrances. What is unusual about Eau La La is that the incense is filled with light and florals. The amber grounds the scent, which keeps the impression very sophisticated. The inspiration (click to enlarge):

Edward Bess Eau La La 1

Other incense fragrances can be a bit dark, and not particularly fitting for a social event or romantic evening. Unlike those, there is something a tiny bit sweet about Eau La La that is optimistic, warm, and beautiful. The scent remained balanced throughout the day, without an overly aggressive silage. Overall, this was a beautiful first step into fragrancy by Edward Bess. This is well worth obtaining a sample, or a spritz at your nearest counter.

edward bess eau la la1

 It’s available at Bergdorf Goodman (Lauren is so helpful!), Edward Bess online, and Sephora online. The image on Sephora shows a set with a purse container, a large crystal bottle for your makeup table, and a funnel to transfer:

Edward Bess Eau La La set

Along with my little sample, Lauren sent the following description of the perfume: (click to enlarge):

Eau-La-La-The-Inspiration2a

Cafe Makeup reviewed Edward Bess Eau La La  from a sample sent free of charge from Bergdorfs

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Dec 172012
 

Edward Bess Eyeshadow Palettes

Edward Bess Eyeshadow Palette in Over the Moon ($68) is a soft combination of cool tones that create a soft, foolproof smokey eye. Like Edward Bess Cosmic Bliss and Sun and Stars that were also just released, the pigmentation is soft, wearable, and long-wearing over a base.

Edward Bess Over the Moon05

Over the Moon has an overall matte impression, although a closer look shows that there is a tiny bit of shimmer in some of the shades. This shimmer is beyond subtle, adding a touch of dimension but no obvious sparkle once the powder is applied.

Edward Bess Over the Moon04

These shades applied beautifully with the Edward Bess Luxury Eye Brush, or any with a similar shape. Certainly the shadows work well with more precise brushes, and blend beautifully. However, Liz and I found that it took very little time and care to give a polished appearance effortlessly.

The colors include the same matte cream base that appears in the other palettes. The 2nd color Swatches:

Edward Bess Over the Moon Swatches

Another set of swatches:

Edward Bess Over the Moon07

Liz did this very quick eye with the Edward Bess Luxury Eye Brush.  We found that the colors were quite dark and dramatic, yet not at all heavy or overbearing. Rather, Over the Moon gave a very flattering, soft smoke impression.

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Liz used the three lightest shades only to get this soft and pretty look. 

As you can see, although Liz didn’t dig into the deepest mauve shade, the other colors give a very cool mauve-gray impression. Overall, this eye took less than a minute and gave a very easy, smokey look.

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Dec 152012
 

Edward Bess Eyeshadow Palettes

Edward Bess’ new four eyeshadow palettes (introduced here) includes the warm neutral Cosmic Bliss ($68). The minute that I opened the palette, I knew that this would be the one that I’d be reaching for most often.

Edward Bess Cosmic Bliss1a1

I realize that preferences between these palettes will vary by personal preference. For me, Cosmic Bliss is an ideal color palette for my warm-toned, NC15/20 skin tone. It’s an effortless look for me, particularly on those mornings when I’ve already put in a few hours of work before my morning 8 am commute. In a very busy life, Cosmic Bliss gives me a polished,  appropriate look for almost anything I might encounter.

Edward Bess Cosmic Bliss4

Just like Edward Bess Sun and Stars, the Cosmic Bliss palette has a light matte shade that nearly matches my skin tone. I use this in my inner corner (I’m using this over a Laura Mercier Eye Basic in Linen, so my lid color is already neutralized with this as the base shade). From the left, the second shade is a soft light shimmery brown with a very slight touch of khaki. The third shade is a neutral shimmery brown. The fourth shade (on the right) is a deep shimmery brown with a touch of red. Swatches:

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More swatches of Edward Bess Cosmic Bliss:

Edward Bess Cosmic Bliss6

Because you might be considering this for an online purchase, here are a few more pictures.  

In shade:

Edward Bess Cosmic Bliss2

One more:

Edward Bess Cosmic Bliss3

Liz did this simple eye, focusing on using the two middle colors:

Edward Bess Cosmic Bliss Eye

As with other items in Edward Bess’ line, Cosmic Bliss is a “use it all the way up” product. His line is full of products with stable, finely-milled products that I can always count on. The shades are beautiful, flattering, and look gorgeous on a wide range of skin tones. These are available at Bergdorf Goodman, select Neiman Marcus stores, and online at Sephora.com.

 

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Dec 132012
 

Edward Bess Eyeshadow Palettes

Edward Bess has recently released three new eyeshadow palettes, Over the Moon, Cosmic Bliss, and Sun and Stars ($68 each). Each offers a selection of lovely neutral shades with gorgeous pigmentation and very smooth blendability.

Edward Bess Es palette

These are slim glossy black mirrored palettes packed with tiny brushes (one end is a sponge, the other a brush). I found that these applied beautifully with Edward Bess’ Luxury Eye Brush (pictured here). This review is for Sun and Stars, a lovely selection of a matte neutral base shade, a coppery brown, a khaki-toned taupe, and a lovely soft black.

Edward Bess Sun and Stars 4

I’ve worn this over Laura Mercier’s Eye Basic in Linen and got all-day wear. I used the middle two shads side-by-side on my lid, with the black as a liner. The lightest shade, which is a soft neutral that nearly matches my skin tone, was placed in my inner corner. So easy, it’s perfect for those times when you want to look confident and effortlessly perfect.

Edward Bess Sun and Stars 1b

The lightest shade is matte, and the other three have a touch of shimmer. This gives a touch of glow on the lid, without leaving any obvious sparkle.

Edward Bess Sun and Stars1

More swatches of Edward Bess’ Sun and Stars:

Edward Bess Sun and Stars2

So far, I love it. This price point is similar to Edward Bess’ Soft Smoke Palette (which I still use quite frequently). I found that the quality of Sun and Stars eyeshadows is remarkably similar to the Edward Bess eyeshadow singles. Here’s Liz’s eye look, using only the three lightest shades (blush is Tom Ford Wicked):

Liz Edward Bess Eye

One more:

Edward Bess

Bottom line:  Lovely, effortless and perfect. The colors of all three are so universal. The palettes are so easy to use, and give a gorgeous, polished and flattering eye.  These are finely milled and blended like a dream. Over my eyeshadow base, I had all-day beautiful wear.

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Apr 282012
 

At our makeover by Edward Bess at Bergdorf’s last month, Liz and I fell in love with his Ultra Slick lipsticks.  Our purchases included Edward Bess Ultra Slick Lipstick in Demi Buff ($32), a creamy neutral with a pink-mauve kick.

Why did I wait so long to try these? When Liz and I lined up a row of numerous lip products to swatch, she immediately noticed a difference when we got to the Edward Bess. If I recall correctly, she said, “Wow! So luxurious!!” The creamy, moisturizing feel of this lipstick does feel like putting  on a cashmere sweater after you’ve worn some scratchy wool. The texture is noticeably better.

Lipsticks were the first product in Edward Bess’ line, and so it is no surprise that they are stars. The luxurious texture translates into a soft, moisturized glow on the lips. We found Demi Buff an excellent everyday color–perfect for brunch, office, or any everyday activity. It adds just enough color, staying quiet and sophisticated.

Here are comparisons with some of the neutrals. By comparison, Burberry Rosewood is more sheer (it takes a few swipes to build up this color with the Burberry, but only a single creamy swipe of Edward Bess layer down plenty of color).  Chanel Patchouli is lighter and more beige. Chanel Baroque is far deeper, and more brown.

Bottom line: Lovely. Really an amazing treat. Don’t be me–don’t wait so long to try these out. You’ll love them.

Edward Bess Demi Buff

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Mar 222012
 

Liz and I were so fortunate to meet Edward Bess in person at Bergdorf’s last week. As we were walking through the magical beauty floor, we found him standing near a counter of his beautifully formulated makeup line. Even more incredibly, he offered to do our makeup. I took some pictures for you to enjoy–and we hope that you do!

First of all, Edward Bess is even more charming and knowledgable in person than we had imagined–and we are some of his biggest fans. A prodigy, his taste level and expertise is incredible. Also, his personality is so pleasant and easy-going–he had us laughing along with him throughout. If you could choose anyone to do your makeover, Edward Bess would be a most delightful (and talented) choice.

Edward began with Liz’s eyes–he explained that cleanups are so much easier if the color product somehow migrates.  We were so lucky to try his new Edward Bess Eye Primer.   This product, which comes in three different shades, is distributed via a brush pen to the lid. Above, the product is coming out of the tube before it is smoothed out (with fingers or the built-in brush). It creates a blank canvas on the lid, drying to an opaque matte finish. I noticed that both Liz’s and my eye makeup lasted beautifully until we removed it much later that evening. The finish is amazing. I cannot wait until this product is available in the next 2-3 weeks. I need it.

With a few exceptions, nearly all of the color products used on both Liz and I were from the Edward Bess Back to Basics Palette ($75). Although I realized that this was a very versatile travel palette, I was stunned to see how easily Bess could use this palette to create our “you but more glamorous” looks. With just a few of his brushes and his fingers, Edward used some of his collection’s favorite colors. You can see Sabrina’s review and swatches of this palette here at The Beauty Look Book.

The eyeshadows were used to create a very natural eye, using the neutral colors on the lid, and the darker shade just above the crease. Edward used his Edward Bess Luxury Eye Brush ($40) (pictured with the palette, above, which I couldn’t resist buying).

A little Edward Bess Defining Eye Liner ($29)….

 More work on the eye area:

 And bringing some color under the eyes:

Edward gave Liz incredibly long, defined lashes with his Edward Bess Lash Designer Volumizing Mascara ($30):

Edward mixed his Edward Bess Platinum Concealer ($38) with a touch of his moisturizing Edward Bess Black Sea Deep Hydration Cream ($90) to do Liz’s under eye area. He also used a mix of this moisturizer with his Edward Bess Sheer Satin Cream Compact Foundation ($60), which he dabbed on Liz with fingers. Although I don’t own this foundation yet, it did provide a very lightweight, moisturizing feel. The finish was lovely. I do own at least three of the Platinum Concealers, which I keep at home, work, and in my purse.  It has amazing coverage and the quality is excellent. I’m discontinuing the use of the Cle de Peau stick concealer in favor of the Edward Bess.

He then began to dab on the blush and highlighter from the Back to Basics Palette to add subtle color to Liz’s cheeks:

He used very soft lipstick and pencil on lips:

Edward then used the South of France Quad Royale ($45) applied with his Luxury Face Brush ($56) to add a glow to Liz’s complexion.  This quad gave Liz a very natural sheen–really, we couldn’t leave the counter without picking one up for her.

The Beauty Look Book’s review and swatches of the South of France Quad Royale are here. If you love a soft, subtle, beautiful glow, this is a must have.

I hope you enjoyed this little essay–we certainly felt very fortunate to have met with Edward Bess. What an enormous talent–I cannot wait to see what else he will be releasing in the coming months.

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Oct 102011
 

This Fall, I’ve begun to notice a heavily contoured cheek used on the runway and in magazines.  For example, look at this look from last week’s Paris runway show of Louis Vuitton Spring Summer 2012:

I noticed another heavily contoured look in this feature from the October ’11 Vogue in this androgynous take on the trend:

I was tempted to try this look, because I love nude blushes, light bronzers and highlighters and have several in my stash.  However, I did not want to apply the product so heavily and dramatically because the heavy application that you see in these examples seem best suited for a runway or fashion studio.  Some ways that I played with the look include using a deeper foundation shade on the lower cheek, and a subtle highlighter on the upper cheek.  This is the most subtle version of the contoured cheek that I can create.

Another is to use a deep blush and highlighter combination, such as the Chanel Soho blush/ highlighter that was released last Fall (limited edition)

If you prefer a cream version of the colors in the Chanel Soho palette, Nars Multiples in Maui and Luxor is a good substitute (swatches below).  I bought the Nars multiples as mini’s in this Sweet Disposition set.
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A third way is a highlighter/combination, including this Hourglass Illume Creme-to-Powder Bronzer Duo in Bronze Light ($40), which is sold at Sephora.  On the top of the compact, there is a champagne gold sheer highlighter.  On the bottom, the compact holds a warm-toned cream bronzer that runs to a medium-toned depth.  The top mirror keeps the compact sleek when stored, but can be swiveled up so that the large mirror can be used.
This Hourglass duo can be worn with the two tones applied separately to create a defined, contoured cheek.
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Alternatively, I can wear the bronzer more traditionally with the highlighter all over the cheek and on the brow bone. The Hourglass Bronzer duo holds one of the deepest bronzers that I can get away with, and I have to apply it sheerly to get it to work.  If you have a medium warm skin tone, you can be more liberal with the use of this bronzer. Those with cooler skin tones may find this duo is too warm.
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I also own Soleil Tan de Chanel Bronzing Makeup Base ($48) (swatched below).  The Hourglass bronzer is a traditional creamy texture that dries down to a powder on the skin and can be beautifully sheered out.  Chanel’s cream bronzer feels drier in the tub, and feels as though it contains some silicon.  Chanel’s is lighter in tone than the Hourglass.  The Chanel tub is a rather enormous 1.0 ounce;  the Hourglass duo holds .39 ounces of product in total (both bronzer and highlighter).
Here is a comparison of Nars Multiples in Luxor and Maui, the two shades from the Hourglass Illume Bronze Light compact, and a combination that I created the Soleil Tan de Chanel Bronzing Makeup Base and Edward Bess All Over Seduction in Sunlight ($38) (reviewed here).
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 Have you played with a contoured cheek?  What are your thoughts?

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Jun 222010
 

For summer, I’m taking a look at Edward Bess’ Ultra Luminous Bronzer in Daydream ($48 for 0.3 oz.)), a soft, natural bronzer. This bronzer has an understated elegance that I can easily and confidently wear.

It’s impossible to over-do it.  Unlike some bronzers I’ve tried (I’m looking at you, Giorgio Armani!), Daydream does not give the faintest hint of orange or cakey build-up when densely applied.  Yet, Daydream is not too subtle.  Unlike Guerlain Blondes, which can sometimes look a little beige even on my pale skin, Edward Bess’ Daydream is soft and easily picked up by the brush.  Daydream is an easy bronzer, even for those normally reluctant to add a little glow.

Daydream is sold in a large round compact with a mirrored lid.  The compact is very slim and easy to pack for travel.

This bronzer is very soft and natural—arm swatches simply do not do this product justice.  I asked my daughter Liz to pose for one picture without bronzer (on the left), then to add Daydream for a second picture (on the right):

Liz applied this product with a Sephora Bronzer Brush, added the color nearly everywhere, but more heavily on the chin, cheeks and forehead. As you can see, Liz’s picture on the left is her normal pale NC15/20 (Chanel Cameo in Tient Innocence Fluid) skin tone.  Adding Daydream for the picture on the right, Daydream’s almost-matte texture gives Liz a “your skin but better” glow.  The powder is very easy to work with, and seems to take away any oil-glow from being outdoors in summer.

  • Tutorial:   Bronzers can be used to sculpt and contour by focusing on the forehead, chin and cheeks.  Makeup artist Lisa Eldridge has done a lovely bronzer tutorial at her site.

Liz finished her makeup by adding a blush, here Nars Lovejoy, to finish her look:

Overall, I like Edward Bess’ Daydream bronzer for an everyday, subtle and sophisticated look.  It’s very appropriate for work or for a formal outdoor event where I want a bit of glow.  For example, if I were attending a wedding, business meeting or a formal lunch, this is the bronzer that I would reach for.  I can see myself purchasing Desert Sun, Edward Bess’ darker bronzer, for a more dramatic look and to add variety.

Stay tuned–this week, I am hoping to post a review for the newly reformulated Guerlain Blondes bronzer for a comparison.

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Mar 242010
 

Edward Bess has been getting high regards from several beauty bloggers that, in my estimation, have high standards including The Beauty Look Book, The London Makeup Girl and The Pink Sith.  Recently, I placed a phone order from the Bergdorf’s counter in New York City for two Edward Bess eyeshadows–Intimate and Dusk ($30 each).

When I ordered, I wasn’t entirely sure of the difference between them and so my review for both is consolidated.  Although there are excellent swatches out on the Internet already, I had to play with them myself to see the comparison.

Overall, the texture of these two is excellent. The pigment is easily picked up by the brush, the powder is very soft and there is excellent color payoff.  They look almost matte in the pan and at some angles.  However, there is a discernible sheen to each.  Both have a very sophisticated look–the colors will look appropriate anywhere, anytime and no matter what else you are wearing.  They are truly universal.  Not sure what kind of eye to do? These are go-to colors that look gorgeous, understated and yet very polished.

All images can be clicked for a larger view.

Here is Intimate, the lighter of the two.  Its a soft light tan with a touch of gray.

Here is Dusk, a deeper complicated taupe:

Here are some swatches (no primer):

Here are more swatches because few of us are able to go to a counter to swatch.  These should also give you a better sense of the way that the texture looks in different types of light:

They look lovely as a wash of color with a matte ivory highlighter, or can be used together for a subtly contoured eye.  Highly, highly recommended for a gorgeous neutral look.

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