I wasn't going to post this, because Betty, a limited edition Edward Bess lipstick was only available for a blink before it got completely sold out. But I changed my mind when a third email arrived asking if it's worth paying extra for this Bergdorf Goodman exclusive on eBay or from various makeup scalpers (apparently it's a thing). While I can't tell you what to do with your money or what a super limited-edition product may be worth for you, I can give you some facts and show you the goods.
Edward Bess created Betty as a tribute to a good friend, Betty Halbreich, a personal shopper at Bergdorf Goodman known for her style and flair (you can imagine it takes amazing skills and extraordinary patience). This lipstick (made in Italy) is of the same Ultra Slick formula that made so many of us Edward Bess devotees, but with an interesting twist. It's rich, luxurious, pigment-saturated, and utterly elegant. Surprisingly (or not, it's been a while since I last bought an Edward Bess lipstick) there's no fragrance, which is good for those of us who weren't crazy about the fig jam scent. The box says it's flavored, but I can't say I've detected any.
Betty is described as a "velvety matte russet hue". It's dark, somewhere between mulled wine and plum, with--- yes--- a hint of russet. Since my lips are darker and rosier than most it pulls more purple on me. It's dramatic, for sure, and not for the demure or faint of heart. The "twist" I mentioned above is the velvet finish that is, indeed, quite matte. The lipstick doesn't look or feel dry, but it's very long lasting, leaves a serious stain (I actually had to use an eye makeup remover on my lips), and hardly transfers once it's set. A good lip prep is necessary and I'd recommend using a lip liner for precision. I know that the slightly less-than-perfect look is still going strong, but it only looks good in magazines and on the very young. At my age a smudged stain is neither flattering nor is it an indication of good mental health.
So, is it a must-have? It's a lipstick, not air and water. Personally, I adore it and glad I was quick enough to buy Betty. I wouldn't pay more than retail, but the number of plummy lipsticks in my plum lipstick drawer (yes, I really have one) might be skewing my view here.