About Besame Cosmetics
Besame Cosmetics is a luxury makeup brand that designs products to recreate glamor of the past. They sell highly pigmented eye, lip and face products, plus accessories including brushes and makeup bags. The vintage-inspired brand boasts a cult following and creates custom, limited edition collections inspired by past decades and iconic characters like Marilyn Munroe and Lucille Ball.
This Besame lipstick review will discuss the brand and a selection of bestsellers, customer reviews, promotions, and more, so that you can decide if their lipstick is right for you.
Overview of Besame Cosmetics
Besame Cosmetics was founded in 2004 by Gabriela Hernandez, a designer and cosmetics historian (side note: how cool does cosmetic historian sound?). Her mission in creating the brand was to channel the simplicity of her grandmother’s beauty routine, and to bring this classic elegance to the modern world of cosmetics.
Gabriela and her family continue to own and operate the company, which is committed to high quality ingredients and clean beauty. Besame vintage makeup is produced locally in Los Angeles, California and products are cruelty-free, long-lasting, low-waste, and designed for sensitive skin. They’re also free of glutens, parabens, and mineral oils and use only natural ingredients.
Unlike some other companies offering a wide variety of products and shades, Besame Cosmetics focuses on curating its relatively small product list featuring lipsticks, eye shadow, mascaras, rouge, powder, and accessories.
Besame’s makeup shades are vintage reproductions: the brand collects vintage makeup from estate sales, auctions, and antique stores, then recreates the colors and textures so their products match the originals (using modern ingredients, of course).
Before we dive into this Besame lipstick review of their bestsellers, here’s a sum up of the brand:
- Sustainably made with natural, high-quality ingredients
- 100% cruelty-free, long lasting, and low waste
- Free of gluten, parabens, and mineral oils
- Safe for people with sensitive skin
- Points reward system that offers product discounts
- Full 30-Day exchange or return policy (some exceptions apply)
- Limited product selection
- Due to licensing, special collections are only available for a limited time
- As a self-described luxury brand, products can be pricey (it’s more expensive than many drugstore brands, but not as expensive as some other premium brands)
Besame Vintage Lipstick Review
Besame Lipsticks are triple-pigmented to create rich shades, with a long-wearing satin finish and a subtle vanilla flavor (ok, yum). They contain Vitamin E, squalane, and aloe. Each Besame vintage lipstick costs $24, and there are currently 15 shades available, plus a mini lipstick trio set priced at $15.
Besame Lipsticks range from medium pink to deeper red shades, to orange-red, maroon, and pink-purple territory. The rich shades have a gentle shine to them, packaged in sleek, attractively vintage gold tubes with rounded tops.
Perhaps one of the coolest things about Besame Lipsticks is that they each have a year in the past that they’re associated with. If you’re unsure which lipstick shades suit you best, you can take a short quiz on the website to discover shades that compliment your skin tone, hair color, and desired uses.
This Besame lipstick review contains a mix of my own reflections and info taken from the website. I’m a history nerd, so I’m really into all things vintage. I’ll take you through the popular lipstick shades between the 1920s and 1960s, decades that coincide with the Hollywood Golden Age.
Let’s travel in time.
The ‘20s: Deep and Daring
They call it the Roaring Twenties for a reason: an economic boom, Prohibition, flappers sneaking into speakeasies, parties like the ones hosted by Leo DiCaprio—I mean Jay Gatsby—in The Great Gatsby. This Besame Lipstick was inspired by women taking risks in the ‘20s, daring to display their femininity in the way they wanted.
The deep, sensual red of Bésame Blood Red from 1921 went with sparkling jewelry and risqué dresses that were shorter than ever before. Ladies were letting loose and their lips showed it with soulful, warm-toned red. A century later, this shade still commands attention and is one of the brand’s top-rated shades.
The 30s: Dark and Sultry
The Hollywood Golden Age continues, and iconic actresses like Joan Crawford and Greta Garbo don sultry plum shades that stood out in black and white films. Besame Noir Red circa 1930 is inspired by the lively parties and intrigue of the ‘30s. Imagine wearing this lip color while attending a murder mystery dinner party (those were all the rage back then). If you want to make a dramatic statement with your pout and love red-purple shades, channel the 30’s.
The ‘40s: Bright and Bold
With the hardships of the Second World War behind them, women yearned for brighter, more optimistic shades. Women were still in the workplace, and many would remain, but were also pressured to return to their duties at home (ugh). They felt confident repping bold shades much like this 1945-inspired Besame American Beauty. It features a flirty berry shade with magenta undertones, with one reviewer calling it a “stunning pink.” I second that.
Besame Red Velvet is the brand’s top selling lipstick, based on a popular hue from 1946 that was carried by many makeup brands. It uses a neutral undertone that works with all skin tones, which no doubt contributes to its bestseller status. Many buyers praise its smooth, long-lasting formula and versatile shade.
The ‘50s: Brazen Babes
If this color makes you think of Marilyn Munroe, you guessed right: This 1959-inspired lipstick shade was favored by the blonde bombshell herself. Besame Red Hot Red pays homage to this brazen Hollywood actress who became one of the most famous cultural icons of her time.
This Besame Lipstick features a brilliant red with a warm yellow undertone. History remembers Marilyn for being exceptionally bright, as well. Dozens of customers express their love for the shade on Besame’s website, and although it’s too bright for me, I think shades like this look really attractive on others.
The ‘60s: Pretty in Pink
If you’re more into natural everyday looks, like I am, you might like the softer pink shades that were popular in the ‘60s. Besame Portrait Pink circa 1963 a soft shade between pink and mauve.
Women in America were captivated by First Lady Jackie Kennedy in the early ‘60s, and beauty companies satisfied the craze. Mrs. Kennedy actually did wear shades resembling this one. How do I know this? I used to watch a lot of Mad Men.
As the decade went on, pink shades still reigned supreme. Besame Dusty Rose inspired by 1969 is a dark pinkish mauve color. It’s well-loved with with nearly perfect ratings on the site. If you like these shades, The Beatles, and all that peace and love stuff, maybe you actually do belong in this era.
Besame Lipstick Reviews: What Do Customers Think?
Besame products are generally well-reviewed across the web, and most customers seem pleased with product performance, especially for lipstick. The brand’s bestsellers all have near-perfect ratings of 4.8 and 4.9 stars.
Based on hundreds of reviews, MakeupAlley.com and Facebook give Besame 4.4/5 and 4.8/5 stars. Both on and off the brand’s website, hundreds of Besame lipstick reviews show that buyers overwhelmingly enjoy the longevity and smooth feel of the brand’s lipsticks and their gorgeous vintage colors, with one reviewer calling it the “perfect lipstick formula.”
The occasional Besame lipstick review complains of color or texture issues (perhaps caused by a manufacturing problem), or about undelivered items. Besame consistently responds to these comments, encouraging the purchaser to get in touch with their customer care department.
Is Besame Lipstick Worth It?
Based on this Besame lipstick review, Besame lipstick seems like great makeup to invest in, if you have the budget for it. While they fall on the pricier side and have a limited selection, they’re of much higher quality than what you can find from cheap drugstore brands. Despite their limited selection, the shades are quite varied across the 15 shades.
Besame gets extra points for making lipsticks that are cruelty free, sustainable, and healthy overall. If you have sensitive skin and struggle to find lip products that work, Besame could be your solution. The overwhelming majority of Besame customers are satisfied and enjoy the lipstick, so it seems like they’ve actually earned their cult following.
A big selling point for Besame makeup is historical accuracy, so if you’re not into vintage, it may not be for you. If you are, Besame is a great way to celebrate the icons and ways of life that influenced beauty throughout the 12th century.
Besame Cosmetics Promotions & Discounts
At the time of this Besame lipstick review, there are currently no deals on their website, but check there regularly, and on their instagram (@besamecosmetics) for promotions.
Besame Rewards Program
Another way to save on Besame Cosmetics is to join their rewards program, which offers you product discounts as you rack up points. Once you sign up for the program, you can earn points in by:
- Leaving a Verified Purchase review on a Besame Product: 10 points
- Referring a friend: you each get 50 points
- Following them on Facebook.com/BesameCosmetics/: 20 points
- Follow them on Instagram (@besamecosmetics): 20 points
- Spending $1: 1 Point
- Having a birthday: 50 points
When you redeem points, you’re given a Besame discount code. 200 points is equal to $10.
Where to Buy Besame Cosmetics
Besame makeup is available primarily through their brand website, BesameCosmetics.com. They also have a flagship store in Burbank, California. Some of their products can be found at independent wholesalers throughout the US, and on Amazon or eBay.
Besame Cosmetics Shipping Policy
Besame ships within the United States and internationally to the United Kingdom, Canada, Japan, and the European Union. Free shipping is offered for Domestic (US) orders of at least $55, or for international orders over $150.
Shipping costs are calculated and displayed at checkout based on your location. Besame estimates for delivery time depend on the order volume.
Besame Cosmetics Return Policy
Besame offers a full 30 day exchange or return policy, excluding sample sets and final sale items. All returns are subject to a $7.95 handling/processing fee, and customers may only process an exchange once per order (unless an exchanged item is damaged upon arrival). Note that Besame does not refund original or return shipping fees.
Contact Besame Cosmetics
If you have questions beyond this Besame lipstick review, you can contact the team via:
- Contact form on BesameCosmetics.com
- Phone: 1 818-276-9400 (Monday to Friday, 8:30 am to 5:00 pm PST)
- Email: [email protected]
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