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  • Sephora15% off for Rouges w/code ROUGESPRING, 15% off for VIBs w/code VIBSPRING (starts 4/19), 10% off for BI w/code BISPRING (4/20-4/23), starts 4/18 and ends 4/24.

MAC Bloggers’ Obsessions Collection


MAC Bloggers’ Obsessions Collection

No one<3’s M∙A∙C more than a beauty blogger. To thank them for their passionate devotion & always honest feedback, we invited nine of our favourites to our lab in Toronto to custom-create their own Eye Shadow or Lipglass. Exclusively online, just like the makeup-mad minds that created them.

Eyeshadow ($14.50 U.S. / $17.50 CDN) (Limited Edition)

Lipglass ($14.50 U.S. / $17.50 CDN) (Limited Edition)

availability: June 21st, 2011; online only, U.S. and Canada

You can read all about Jealousy Wakes and my experience here!

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Tour of MAC Cosmetics’ Production Facilities


Toronto, Canada is the birthplace of MAC Cosmetics!

Tour of MAC Cosmetics’ Production Facilities

In April, I traveled to Toronto, Canada for a whirlwind press trip (seriously, about 24 hours in Toronto!) with MAC Cosmetics. Several beauty bloggers, including myself, were given an opportunity to tour The Esteé Lauder Companies Canadian Innovation Centre and production facility, both located in Markham, Canada.

In order to tour the facilities, we had to get decked out in oh-so-sexy safety gear, including steel-toed shoe covers, hair nets, safety googles, and lab coats—and dangling hair or jewelry is not allowed! As we traveled through the different areas in the production facility, which smelled a whole lot like vanilla, we saw lipsticks in liquid form get poured into molds, cooled, and then popped out and inserted into their tubes.

The facility still has manual lines in addition to more high-tech automated runs (which actually employ more people than I’d expect, just to watch over the machine and its output). We saw an automated line making—what seemed like—an endless supply of MAC Shy Girl Lipstick, along with a manual run of Origins’ lipsticks. In the manual line, there were employees who had to “flame” lipsticks, which is a process of fixing any minor imperfections and smoothing out the bullet as well as giving it that brand-new-lipstick-shine.

It was a very out-of-body experience to see so many machines cranking out hundreds (thousands?) of products of all types, but my favorite part was meeting the employees who ran the lines and walked us through what they do each day. It was amazing to spend a few hours getting to know the people behind the makeup, because they take as much pride producing the product as the people who create the color stories and shades.

After touring the production facilities, we headed over the Innovation Centre, which is where products are initially created. We had lunch with many of the facilities chemists (there had to been at least twenty at the table!)—the ones behind the science of makeup, really getting down to the nitty-gritty in terms of proportions, ingredients, and how each formula comes together.

For instance, to make a small test batch of eyeshadow, all of the ingredients get added to a mason jar, then blended using a regular ol’ blender (no, seriously—you’d think it would be some fancy schmancy machine, but it’s not!), poured into a small metal pan, and then they have a press to lock it in. It’s like a one-stop-shop for eyeshadow! And to think, I was using denim jeans, a quarter, and brute force to press my own eyeshadow.  Once shades are approved, they go on to bigger and better machines (the real deal).

There is also the quality assurance lab, which is focused on ensuring each new batch of a shade is consistent with the original shade. They swatch in quadrants such that the original color will be in the top left and bottom right, and the new batch will be in the top right and bottom left to compare. Those wishing to work there have to take a hue test (looked like the Farnsworth-Munsell Hue Test, which you can challenge yourself with this online version) as one way to evaluate a person’s ability to see color.

It’s amazing how many people are involved from start to finish of each product and shade. I now have more much appreciation for all of the work brands and their employees must put into their products!

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Liquid Eyeliner Comparisons & Swatches


Illamasqua Abyss, MAC On the Hunt, MUFE #13, Stila Sequins, MAC Marked for Glamour

Liquid Eyeliner Comparisons & Swatches

There are several variations on the liquid liners lately, including Illamasqua Precision Ink, MAC Superslick Eyeliner, Make Up For Ever Aqua Liners, and Stila Sparkle Liners. I swatched through them to compare, and these are the results:

  • blacks: There are really no distinguishable differences between Illamasqua Abyss, MAC On the Hunt, or MUFE #13–they’re all a really deep, dark inky black. Stila Sequins is similar but has noticeable shimmer. MAC Marked for Glamour is a little grayer than Stila Sequins, and MUFE #15 is comparable to Marked for Glamour. MUFE #14 and Stila Starry are comparable, while MUFE is a little darker overall.
  • golds: There are no distinguishable differences between Illamasqua Alchemy, MAC Pure Show, or MUFE #1.
  • olives: MAC Desires & Devices has more gold shimmer and a blacker, less green base compared to Stila Flash.
  • greens: MAC Treat Me Nice and MUFE #3 are indistinguishable from each other.
  • teals: MUFE #4 and Stila Electric are indistinguishable from each other.
  • blues: The darker blues are rather varied; none of them look alike. From the lighter blues, MUFE #5 has more shimmer and is a lighter, more neon blue than Stila Bora Bora.
  • purples: Similar to the darker blues, there is quite a bit of variation of the four purple shades available. MUFE #8 and Stila Royal are the only ones that are comparable, but Stila is less red toned, more violet shimmered.
  • browns: None of the brown shades look alike.

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MAC Surf Baby Online Now!

MAC Surf Baby Online Now!

Looks like MAC Surf Baby has popped up online: Colour & Face.   It’s not officially up, so you can also go through the product types (e.g. eyeshadow) to see the products.   Keep in mind that if something you had your eye on sold out, just watch out for when it launches on other retailers’ websites, such as Dillard’s.  Not sure what the free shipping code is at the moment, but you could try something like SURF.  There is the code SANDRA, but it may have expired already.  Macy’s has free shipping for orders over $50.

Photos, Reviews, Swatches

MAC Pro Eye Makeup Remover Review, Photos

MAC Pro Eye Makeup Remover
MAC Pro Eye Makeup Remover

MAC Pro Eye Makeup Remover

MAC Pro Eye Makeup Remover ($18.00 for 3.4 fl. oz.) is touted as a gentle eye makeup remover that is “mega-effective” but will still “calm, hydrate, and soothe skin.”  It’s gentle, all right!  While it’s a dream to apply–no stinging, burning, or cloudiness–there’s not much else it does well.

As a makeup remover, it just doesn’t do an effective job at removing eye makeup, even just regular mascara and eyeliner prove to be too hard to handle for this remover. On waterproof/long-wearing products, it doesn’t cut through it at all. I’ve pressed a cloth soaked in the remover against my eye for thirty seconds or longer, but I wasn’t able to get much product removed. It seems to be okay for eyeshadow, but it doesn’t remove eyeliner, mascara.   Given that it’s an eye makeup remover but doesn’t excel at that task at all, I definitely do not recommend this product.

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