I love cruelty-free beauty. That, and a desire to help others, are what drove me to create IntegriBeauty. However, there are some other things brands can do to stand out and make an impression in my book. I admire brands that formulate their products to be vegan-friendly, and also those that keep their products affordable to be more accessible. Even more admirable, is when a brand sets out to make the world a better place in some way. One of those brands that I just discovered recently, is Barks and Beauty Cosmetics. In today’s post, I’ll be reviewing the Barks and Beauty ExtraMatte Lipsticks.
First, I’d like to provide more information on this amazing brand. Barks and Beauty Cosmetics is a new indie beauty brand based in California. I have spoken to the owner, Ashley Forsythe, several times and she is a great person with a special purpose in her heart. Like me, she loves both beauty and dogs (she is a dog mom of seven!). She combined those passions to create Barks and Beauty Cosmetics.
The mission of this brand is to offer quality products and fight both animal abuse and cosmetic animal testing. A portion of sales are donated to animal rescues. The brand’s launch was actually delayed because when the pandemic hit and hand sanitizer was in short supply, Ashley decided to put production on hold and focus on making hand sanitizer for animal rescues and veterinary clinics.
Barks and Beauty Cosmetics was able to “soft launch” in August 2020 with its hand sanitizers. It wasn’t until July 2021 that the Barks and Beauty ExtraMatte Lipsticks, the brand’s first makeup products, launched. These lipsticks are currently the only makeup products available from the brand, but I look forward to seeing what they launch next!
After I expressed interest in Barks and Beauty Cosmetics and explained to Ashley what I’m all about, she added me to her PR list. I couldn’t be more happy to be working with such a special brand that aligns so closely with my own mission. I was thrilled to receive all four of the Barks and Beauty ExtraMatte Lipsticks to test and review. I’ve had these lipsticks for a few weeks now and really enjoy them. Please continue reading to learn more about these lovely lipsticks that help animals in need!
Please note that while I did receive these products in PR, that in no way has swayed my opinion of them. Barks and Beauty Cosmetics didn’t ask for anything other than my honest opinion, and that is what I share in the following product review.
- Price: $14.00
- Net weight: 0.14 oz. | 4 g
- Made in Italy
- Cruelty-free (Leaping Bunny certified)
- Shelf life: 24 months
- Where to buy: BarksandBeautyCosmetics.com
- BarksandBeautyCosmetics.com currently only ships within the United States; however, that may change as the brand grows
- Overall rating: 6.8/10
- Shade range: 3/10
- Packaging/ease of application: 9/10
- Hydration: 7/10
- Staying power: 8/10
- Price: 7/10
Please note that I am not a makeup artist. The opinions expressed in this review are my own, as a regular person that loves makeup.
Barks and Beauty Cosmetics launched the ExtraMatte Lipsticks in the following four shades:
- Teddy: Warm beige nude
- Chihuahua: Neutral beige nude with a touch of pink
- Bambi: Medium pink
- Pimento: True bold red (it looks like a deep pink in most of my photos, but this shade really is red in person)
The shade “Chihuahua” is currently unavailable, but I am hopeful that it will be restocked. Between the two nude shades, I prefer that one over “Teddy.” They are both nice nude shades, but “Teddy” almost looks like a concealer shade on my lips since it is close to my fair neutral skin tone. Those with skin tones different from mine are likely to feel differently about these shades.
This is a very small shade range for lipsticks. However, I understand that Barks and Beauty is a very small brand and also very new. It made sense for them to start small. I expect the shade range will expand over time, especially as they receive customer feedback.
There are several shades that I would like to see added to this range. Specifically, a brown nude, berry, and a bright orange. There are many other shades that would also be nice additions to address every shade preference.
I rated this shade range very low, only three out of ten. However, I’d like you to take that with a grain of salt since this is such a young brand. Considering that fact, I think the shades chosen are great choices. Nudes are always good to have, then “Bambi” is a good “middle of the road” option, and “Pimento” is bright and bold! They’re all very pretty and can be customized by pairing with a lip gloss and/or lip liner.
Packaging/ease of application
Barks and Beauty ExtraMatte Lipsticks are traditional bullet-style lipsticks. The packaging is black plastic, but it looks very nice and sleek. While this packaging is quite basic, it is just as effective as any twist-up bullet-lipstick I’ve ever had. My only complaint about the packaging is that the lipstick shades aren’t visible anywhere on the outside. There is a sticker on the bottom that shows the shade name, but you can’t see the actual color of the lipstick without opening it (you’ll see this in another photo later in the review).
You likely can’t see it in this photo, but there are actually lips and paw prints printed on the outside. Very cute! I love that special touch. It’s a nice reminder of what Barks and Beauty stands for. 🙂
The application of these lipsticks is very easy. These are obviously matte lipsticks, but the formula feels and applies more like that of a creamy lipstick. There is no tugging; they glide over the lips smoothly.
I rated this category nine out of ten because the three lighter shades aren’t very pigmented. Pigmentation is subjective, as some people prefer more pigmentation while others want less. I don’t feel that strongly either way, but I thought it was worth mentioning.
When applying “Teddy,” “Chihuahua,” and “Bambi,” it takes a few layers to achieve full opacity. “Pimento,” on the other hand, is much more pigmented and doesn’t require as much building up. I probably still spend just as much time, or maybe a little more, applying “Pimento” just because it is such a bold shade, I want to make sure I don’t smudge it.
Matte lipsticks have a bad reputation for being very drying on the lips. Not only do many of them not provide hydration, but it seems like some suck the moisture right out of your lips! I’m very happy to report that the Barks and Beauty ExtraMatte Lipsticks have a non-drying formula. I think this is partly because they contain vitamin E which moisturizes and strengthens the skin barrier.
Since the formula of these lipsticks is quite creamy, they’re also very comfortable. The texture feels smooth and lightly hydrating. To illustrate this, I’ll share a comparison. When wearing some matte lipsticks, you can’t really rub your lips together because they’re so dry. With these lipsticks applied, however, you can still easily rub your lips together.
While the Barks and Beauty ExtraMatte Lipsticks provide enough hydration to make them comfortable, I don’t consider them to be very hydrating compared to some other types of lip products out there. One thing that makes me say that is that when these lipsticks wear off, I don’t feel as though there is any hydration left behind. Lip glosses, balms, and some lipsticks that are very hydrating will leave some hydration on the lips after the color and shine has disappeared.
As far as matte lipsticks go, I’m actually quite pleased with the level of hydration and comfort these provide. The focus of most matte lipsticks is color-payoff (which is understandable) and lovevity, but the comfort factor is often overlooked. I’m really glad Barks and Beauty didn’t make that mistake. 🙂
While matte lipsticks aren’t generally thought to be hydrating, they are generally very long lasting. In most cases, there is a “dry down” that makes matte lipsticks resistant to smudging or fading. The Barks and Beauty ExtraMatte Lipsticks don’t really do that, which is tied to the fact that they are pretty hydrating and creamy for being matte lipsticks. Unfortunately, this means they also aren’t the most long lasting.
This was a tough category for me to rate because the staying power of these lipsticks isn’t consistent between all of the shades. I find that the staying power of the two nude shades isn’t very good. “Bambi” has average staying power, and “Pimento” stays in place the longest. I think this is at least partially due to the varying levels of pigmentation. In a previous section, I mentioned that the nude shades are the least pigmented, while the bold red “Pimento” is very pigmented.
All of these lipsticks will last pretty well through normal wear, i.e. talking and drinking water. If you’re wearing the nude shades all day, you’ll likely need to reapply at least a few times, especially after eating. “Bambi” performs similarly, but lasts just a bit longer than the two nude shades.
“Pimento” will fade a bit over time when I drink water or eat, but the color never goes away fully until I wash it off at the end of the day. This shade fades very gracefully. Like many red lipsticks, this one fades to appear like a dark pink shade. Even when most of the lipstick is gone, my lips will still be tinted pink from this shade as it seems to have a staining effect.
You might be surprised to see that I rated Barks and Beauty ExtraMatte Lipsticks eight out of ten for staying power since overall, their staying power isn’t the best. I took into consideration that while these lipsticks have a matte finish, the texture is creamy and somewhat hydrating. Therefore, it makes sense that they would perform more like creamy vs. matte lipsticks. The good news is, these lipsticks aren’t too fussy to apply so I don’t mind reapplying these.
I am very supportive of companies with a philanthropic mission. However, many of those companies price their products quite high in order to afford the added expense of donations. Since Barks and Beauty Cosmetics donates a portion of its sales to animal rescues, I was afraid their products would be in the high-end price range.
Barks and Beauty ExtraMatte Lipsticks are $14.00 each. There are several drugstore lipsticks available for less than $10.00, some only a few dollars like the e.l.f. SRSLY Satin Lipsticks. Compared to those lipsticks, these from Barks and Beauty are quite expensive! On the other hand, they are also less expensive than high-end which usually starts around $18.00 for lipsticks.
While I wish the price of these lipsticks could be lower (maybe $10.00) I understand why they cost a little more and I think $14.00 is fair. I already mentioned the added expense from donations to animal rescues, but Barks and Beauty Cosmetics is also a very small new brand. It’s expensive to start a cosmetics brand.
I am so grateful to Barks and Beauty Cosmetics for sending me their ExtraMatte Lipsticks! Their mission, first and foremost, is amazing and warms my heart. I am very happy to have the opportunity to work with them!
The Barks and Beauty ExtraMatte Lipsticks have all gotten a good amount of use since they joined my collection. They are comfortable and I’m almost always able to match one of the four shades with what I’m wearing. If you’ve been on the hunt for a matte lipstick that doesn’t dry out your lips, these may be perfect for you!
I’ve actually surprised myself because I was never one to wear nude lipsticks much (with the exception of brown lipsticks), but those shades are the ones I’ve worn most from this collection! Since I have fair skin, I feel that they look best when worn with a lip liner to give my lips some definition, but they really are great! I enjoy the other shades as well but don’t wear them as often since they aren’t quite as versatile.
Which of the four shades is your favorite? While I’ve worn “Teddy” and “Chihuahua” the most, “Pimento” is actually my favorite! It’s such a pretty red shade.
Are you interested in trying the Barks and Beauty ExtraMatte Lipsticks, or possibly future launches from the brand? If so, please let me know in the comments!