Not too long ago I put out a call for products that are versatile, space saving, and above all, beautiful; and the amazingly generous people over at Ellis Faas responded in a big way. They sent a package with some of their favorite products as well as a lovely little booklet about the full Ellis Faas line and an instruction sheet detailing how to use their specialized product dispensers. Here’s what I learned:
First, a bit about the company, created by and named for acclaimed makeup artist Ellis Faas:
This is a higher end brand (particularly for university students) with prices hovering around 35 USD per item. Each cosmetic in the line is housed in identical silver bullet pens (complete with brush/applicator) giving them a chic look. These pens were designed to fit in the Ellis Holder, a large bullet shaped case with space for all of the products you need to keep your full face of makeup organized while you’re on the go.
One of the most interesting things about this line is the colors; the inspiration for which is said to be derived from the human body itself. The brown tones are stolen from freckles, the pink from tongues, and the red from blood, and they’re not kidding. According to Faas and her team, this helps make the colors universally flattering. While it’s hard to imagine that even one color could look good on everyone, let alone a whole line—it is an intriguing thought.
All in all the Ellis Faas products are definitely versatile enough to merit a spot in your tightly packed travel make-up kit. They are high quality and can be used to create a variety of looks. You could easily utilize the same products for a classy day at your internship and a never-ending night out. The colors are gorgeous and the pens, despite a few drawbacks are fairly easy to work with. Read on for my thoughts on individual parts of the line.
The Ellis Holder: I don’t actually have the holder but it seems like a pretty ingenious way to keep your makeup essentials organized while you travel. The only drawback I can see is an obvious one; it only holds Ellis Faas products. If you’re looking to invest some money and try traveling with only products that fit in the Holder, I’m sure you could do given the range of the line. If not, I’d say there’s no need to invest in the Holder, no matter how chic it looks.
The packaging. Don’t lie, how you feel about a product is half how it works and half how it looks while it’s working. Well, I’m here to tell you that Ellis Faas products do not disappoint. The packaging looks great in my bag and has a sturdy, expensive feel (which is good because these products aren’t cheap). For reference, each pen is about the size of a typical mascara tube, which means that, even though I don’t have the holder, when filled with Ellis Faas products my makeup bag is still organized and clean, looking.
Using the pen. The products are great and it’s nice that each pen has a built in brush but, personally, I find using them a bit trying at times. In order to fill the brush with product you have to twist the bottom of the pen, a process that quite honestly stressed me out from the first time I did it. Not only does it take longer than my extreme impatience allows for, it’s also a “you can’t put the toothpaste back in the tube” situation. You see, in an attempt not to waste too much of the product that I love, I twist the bottom slowly which leads to me growing frustrated and impatient. I understand that this is more a personal problem than a problem with the product itself but it’s worth mentioning.
The colors are beautiful. The colors are highly pigmented, buildable, and have a way of melting into your skin. They weren’t kidding when they said the human body inspired these colors. The Ellis Red lip color looks so much like blood that it kind of startled me when I first saw it appear on the lip brush.
The lipsticks really last. Dude! I put a light layer of one of the creamy lipsticks on and it made it through a cup of tea without leaving marks on the cup. A healthy layer of one of the milky lipsticks lasted through my shower (through. my. shower!).
The mascara. The mascara is good but not the absolute best I've ever used. It only comes in black and brown, which isn't a problem, defines lashes well, and lasts all day. Where the mascara falls short, in my opinion, is that it doesn't pass the sleep test. If you fall asleep in this mascara you will wake up with it all over your face; and not in a lovely smokey eye sort of way, in a trashy "please don't ask what I was up to last night" sort of way. Technically you should take off your mascara before you go to bed but that just isn't always possible. For all of those nights, I say use this mascara at your own risk.
The concealer. It seems kind of wrong to end by singling out just one product but man oh man, is this an amazing concealer. I’ll even go out on a limb and say it is maybe the best concealer I’ve ever used. Even without foundation it beautifully blends into my skin and helps me feel polished and put together. In addition, it comes in 8 different shades and the texture is suitable for all skin types.