Despite my age, in some ways, I consider myself very millennial. In others, I’m soooo not!! Of course, I love social media, start-up culture and coffee shops. Selfies and reality trash TV? Nah, not so much.
The new Estée Edit line from Estée Lauder is aimed at millennials on the face of it, but dig deeper and it’s got universal appeal. For starters, there’s the packaging, taking the signature blue element from the traditional Estée Lauder branding and refreshing it with bold Klein-blue-and-white graphics. The result is fresh and dynamic with ‘The Estée Edit’ written in a handwritten flourish. In millennial-ese, blue is recognised as perfect for Instagram as research says that blue-toned images get more engagement than, say red (who knew?). And the handwritten font is personable and energising, nodding to the motivational phrases that define Pinterest and Insta.
So well done branding team for the eye-catching graphics. But what of the products? Well, it’s a mixed bag with mixed reviews. It’s a big collection of 82 products and while a lot of thought has gone into cute concepts, some are more successful than others. For me, the yellow ‘Lip Flip’ lipstick has limited appeal (some call it ‘gimmicky’), and some of the palettes aren’t my bag, shade-wise. The Beam Team Hydrate and Glow has potential as a moisturising highlighter but doesn’t quite deliver. It’s just too subtle. It has a secret solid reserve of shimmery balm in the lid, which is a fab idea, but again, the product is too sheer. But that aside there are still plenty of winners in the line. I’ve had a good play with my samples and my most-used products are:
Pore Vanishing Stick An oil-controlling, blur balm in stick form (£21, below), this can be used under makeup but I use it on top to blur pores and de-shine. I like the size of this for on-the-go grooming.
White Mud Exfoliating Scrub and Mask I love the texture of this mask (£28, below). It’s very thick and creamy, so you don’t squeeze out too much and it feels luxe. It contains small Jojoba beads to massage in gently and leaves skin looking noticeable brighter and less congested.
Dissolve The Drama Make-up Remover This isn’t pictured as it’s in permanent use in my bathroom but it’s a great buy if you love oil cleansers. It’s not perfect – the oil is runnier than most and doesn’t come out easily from the bottle, so it can be messy. But it’s very effective for end-of-the-day make-up removal, including eye make-up. And I love that it’s a big, 200ml sized bottle; for £22 I think it’s good value.
Flash Photo Gloss There are lots of supposedly selfie-friendly products here, including this slightly blue-tinted clear lip gloss (£15, below) designed to ‘help your teeth flash selfie-white’. Um, I can’t say my teeth look super-white but as a clear gloss, I really like it.
Flash Illuminator (in 04 Day Light) To me, this is like a paler, liquid-cream version of my holy grail Estee Lauder Shimmering Nudes Allover Illuminator. It’s great for adding subtle iridescence to tops of cheekbones on a minimal make-up day. But you know what? It’s even better for a rose gold glow on forearms and shoulders (£22, below).
Skin Glowing Balm Millennials, it seems, can’t get enough of illuminating, shading and glow-giving products, so the scope for tinted moisturisers and glow balms is pretty huge. Skin Glowing Balm (£26, above) is a sort of tinted moisturiser for those days when your skin doesn’t need coverage but you want to look like you’ve caught the sun. The trick is to apply sparingly and blend. It leaves a lovely sheen and a just-tan-enough tint. It works on darker skin tones too, on which note, I love how the Estée Edit shows its products on different skin tones on social…
And so to the overall concept. Being a millennial-tailored brand, The Estée Edit isn’t just about product. Remember, millennial beauty is experiential beauty, so it’s also about social media, endless content and fun personalities. The brand launched with Sephora as a partner, tapping into the beauty retailer’s insights into the very specific ways this customer likes to shop. As the name suggests, the brand relies on guest ‘editors’ to help curate and promote the product. So for launch, we have Kendall Jenner and Irene Kim creating videos, appearing in social and generally making us want in on the Estée Edit way of life. “They are guest editors of the collection and the idea is that the clients are inspired by their attitude, their style, their point of view,” says Jane Hertzmark Hudis, group president for The Estée Lauder Cos.
It’s also an inclusive, global vision, which means that racial diversity extends from model casting to darker foundation shades, and I notice that the social editors make a point of engaging with commenters and giving advice. Yes there is some great product and yes, there’s room for improvement, but in the long run, I think it’s the brand ‘personality’ that fans buy into. As Estée herself used to say, ‘beauty is an attitude’, and for The Estée Edit that has plenty of potential.
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WORDS AND IMAGES: Disneyrollergirl/Navaz Batliwalla
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