The Estée Edit by Estée Lauder has been one of the loudest beauty launches this year. As the fresher, younger sister of the classic makeup line curated by guest editors, the new line lets you channel different “attitudes” from edgy to bare.
While the line definitely hits more of a millennial chord, the prices are still what budgeting beauties would consider a splurge. But are the products worth the hype, and the money? I’ve been testing out a handful of products from the new collection and while some definitely make my high end heroes list, there are a couple that I’d pass up too.
Let’s start with the great, since you’re probably here for the heroes.
WORTH IT: Skin Glowing Makeup Balm with Pink Peony ($36)
This is a tinted moisturizer on steroids. With an extremely creamy texture and decent buildable coverage, this is a tinted moisturizer I’d trust wearing out for more than just errands. Ingredients include shea butter, evening primrose, and muru muru seed butter, which efficiently hydrate tired skin and give the most gorgeous, healthy natural finish. It definitely sits dewy on the skin (not for my oily skinned ladies!), but still feels light and gives off more of a radiance than it does shine. With twelve shades to cover a range of skin tones, a little bit of blending will ensure you find a match.
WORTH IT: Flash Illuminator ($28)
This might be the most intense highlighter you’ll ever use, with five shades you can use for a range of purposes! This illuminator contains hyaluronic acid, the “it” ingredient to hydrating skin, and is intensely pigmented with a strong glow. Use it as a traditional highlighter, mix it into your foundation, use the tinted shades as blush or even add shimmer to your whole body. For a highlight, you get a generous amount (.85 oz) and you hardly need a pea size to top all of the high points on your face.
WORTH IT: The Barest Bronzer ($32)
One side a matte bronzer, the other a splash of gold illuminating powder… which is a spray over. So once the shimmer is gone, you’re left with a nice matte bronzer which is generous in size. Something I’ve noticed is that the bronzer on the matte side is lighter in shade than what’s under the shimmer. So then, after all the shimmer’s gone, you’re left with one side that’s pretty good for contouring and the other for adding a warm glow to the face. It’s got pretty great color payoff as well, with a soft texture that’s easy to blend and buildable for an intense sculpting effect.
WORTH IT: Beam Team Hydrate & Glow ($42)
Another multi-purpose illuminator that is so luxurious. In the tube, we have a creamy, moisturizing lotion with hyaluronic acid that contains shimmering micro-pearls that give off a glowing radiance for an instant skin pick-me-up. Use as a moisturizer under makeup, over makeup as a subtle highlight, or mixed in to give your foundation a glow… even use it on its own when you’re forgoing makeup but need to brighten things up. In the flip cap, we have a golden cream highlight to add intensity to the high points. Now, do you need this if you already have the flash illuminator? This is definitely more subtle so it really just depends on what look you wear most often.
And now for the products I wouldn’t think about splurging on…
NOT WORTH IT: Flash Illuminator Fluid Powder ($32)
While this powder has it’s pros, like its velvety texture and incredible blendability, it’s just too glittery for my taste. I prefer highlighters that give off more of a glow or sheen, rather than straight up glitter particles. Especially since the liquid version of the Flash Illuminator comes with so much product and is so intense at $4 less, I don’t see a use for this in my own routine.
NOT WORTH IT: The Blackest Liner ($22)
While I really like this liner’s pigment and formula, the felt tip brings it down. Not only has it started to fray at the tip after a month, it’s also dried up significantly already, making application streaky and difficult.
NOT WORTH IT: The Edgiest Up & Out Double Mascara ($24)
I’m a strong advocate for saving on mascara— especially since it’s the makeup item that expires the quickest. Yes, the comb side does separate and lift my lashes well and yes, the brush side does add volume, but I don’t get a big enough “wow” to blow my drugstore mascara favorites out of the water.
WORTH IT IF YOU’RE NOT PAYING: Cocobalm ($22)
Very cute packaging, yes, with a squeezable reservoir that pushes the gloss up through the small applicator tip hidden under the twist-off curve. The formula is really hydrating, fairly pigmented for a gloss, and not sticky at all… but $22 for a small lip gloss? I can’t. However, if someone else was footing the bill, or I had a gift card, I’d grab one since I really do enjoy wearing these for a subtle hint of color and keeping my lips moisturized.
Skin Glowing Balm in Wheat
The Barest Bronzer in Medium/Deep
Flash Illuminator in Day Light
Flash Illuminator in Spot Light
The Blackest Liner
The Edgiest Up & Out Double Mascara
Cocobalm in Coco Berry