Bésame Cosmetics Mini Lipstick Set Swatches and Review

Bésame Cosmetics is an essential brand for any pinup’s makeup kit. Their colours are authentic recreations from the 1910s through to the 1970s (at time of writing), are highly pigmented, long-lasting and don’t dry out your lips. I have a few of their lipsticks already and I wear them more often than any other brand. My three favourites are 1955 Exotic Pink, 1946 Red Velvet and 1941 Victory Red.

My in-laws were kind enough to gift me the Bésame Cosmetics Mini Lipstick Set for Christmas (from 19 Black), so I figured I’d show you what they look like on as well as a general review of Bésame Cosmetics. The kit contains five lipsticks – 1930 Noir Red, 1935 Cherry Red, 1946 Red Velvet, 1969 Dusty Rose and 1970 Chocolate Kiss. We’ll go through the set chronologically, with each lipstick being applied with a lip brush on bare lips. For reference, I have very light skin with cool undertones (Ivory Nude in Estee Lauder’s Double Wear foundation, my everyday foundation shade).

Packaging

Packaging.jpg

The lipsticks come in little push-up tubes styled with the classic Bésame gold and red. My only complaint is that the lipsticks are so small they feel very fragile – I worry about them breaking if I apply with too much pressure.

Swatches

swatches

Swatches from L to R: 1930 Noir Red, 1935 Cherry Red, 1946 Red Velvet, 1969 Dusty Rose and 1970 Chocolate Kiss.

1930 Noir Red

1930-noir-red

From the Bésame Cosmetics site:

A deep plum, boysenberry red. Goes on dark and dramatic on lighter skin tones and a bit lighter berry-red shade for dark skin tones. A semi-matte finish with one coat full coverage.

I think this one is my favourite. It’s a beautiful deep plum that I tend to wear with darker coloured dresses to create a more goth pinup look. A neat thing about Bésame Cosmetics is they include a little blurb about the inspiration for the lipstick and the website says it was created to invoke the look of Gatsby era glamour. I’ll have to give it a whirl if I end up heading to Art Deco weekend in Napier at any point.

1935 Cherry Red

1935 Cherry Red.jpg

From the Bésame Cosmetics site:

Deep, rich cherry red that can be worn as a sheer rose stain or opaque. A semi-matte finish with one coat full coverage.

This one is probably in the bottom of the bunch for me. It’s a beautiful deep blue-red, but colour-wise it’s pretty hard to tell the difference between this and the Red Velvet. I actually had a lot of trouble telling the photos for these two colours apart. You do need to layer it if you prefer a more opaque look because, as the description says, it goes on as more of a stain the first time. Another downside is my lips are still stained after taking it off despite using a makeup wipe and cleanser, plus I have a little swatch stain on my wrist. Gorgeous colour, but not for me.

1946 Red Velvet

1946 Red Velvet.jpg

From the Bésame Cosmetics site:

A deeper red suitable for every day wear. This neutral undertone red looks wonderful on all skin tones. A semi-matte finish with one coat full coverage.

I think it’s cheating to say this is one of my favourites, as I already owned this colour before getting this kit. It’s one of my daily go tos, along with 1941 Victory Red. Red Velvet is deeper and has more blue tones than Victory Red (which is much closer to a “true red”). Fun fact, this is the shade they used on Marvel’s Agent Carter as Peggy’s signature shade.

1969 Dusty Rose

1969-dusty-rose

From the Bésame Cosmetics site:

Natural rose for every day wear. Looks like your lips but better! Best on light-to-medium skin tones. A semi-matte finish with one coat full coverage.

This is one of the closer shades Bésame does to a nude (along with 1963 Portrait Pink). I can’t say I’m a fan; for some reason it looks really dark on me, even compared to the sample photos on the website. I think this is one of those instances where it would look better on me if I had a natural-ish hair colour and/or had warmer undertones to my skin. It is a beautiful shade and I would recommend it for people who prefer the ‘my-lips-but-better’ shades of lipstick as the Bésame formula is to die for.

1970 Chocolate Kiss

1970-chocolate-kiss

From the Bésame Cosmetics site:

Neutral milk chocolate brown, especially flattering on red-heads. A great nude shade for medium to dark skin. A semi-matte finish with one coat full coverage.

Honestly, I thought I wouldn’t like this shade as I lean more towards pink-neutrals and it explicitly says in the description it’s not made for my skin tone. All that said, it’s grown on me. Maybe not an everyday shade for me, but one that would look great with any 60s/70s era outfits.

My verdict

Buy full size: 1930 Noir Red, 1946 Red Velvet
Maybe: 1970 Chocolate Kiss
Pass: 1935 Cherry Red, 1969 Dusty Rose

The travel kit is no longer widely available as a set, but you can now buy some of these lipsticks in the mini travel size individually from Bésame Cosmetics for $8USD; perfect for if you’re not sure about a shade before committing to a full-sized tube. As a general recommendation, I highly recommend any Bésame Cosmetics lipstick. There’s plenty of inspiration on their website and on Instagram for finding someone with a similar skin tone to yourself to see how it will look on you.

So what do you think? Which shade was your favourite? Do you have a favourite shade of lipstick from Bésame Cosmetics?

Lots of love,
Mrs Greatnews xx

Bésame Cosmetics is available from a number of New Zealand retailers and be shipped through YouShop by NZ Post. None of the content in this blog post was paid for or sponsored.

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2 thoughts on “Bésame Cosmetics Mini Lipstick Set Swatches and Review

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