What MAC PRO products do YOU recommend as must-haves? Share your favorites!
Question courtesy of Kris.
MAC Cosmetics: Guide For The Newly Addicted, Part 7
- Skin Care | MAC is not particularly known for their skin care, but they have been expanding it in the past few years to try and gain better market share in the skin care industry. Popular favorites have been the makeup removing wipes (raved for their scent), and Cremewash caused quite a bit of a stir when it originally debuted as a creamy, lathering cleanser. Cleanse Off Oil is known to get off even the most stubborn liquid liners. Moisturelush cream (face and eye) was recently released in late 2007, and it has been well received thus far as an extra hydrating moisturizer choice. There is a cult following for Fast Response Eye Cream (FREC) for its ability to de-puff and minimize lines around the eyes. Strobe Cream offers an easy way to give a glowy, dewy finish. If you enjoy water spritzes, MAC offers their Charged Water line, which infuses water with certain characteristics. Fix+ is known as a good way to finish makeup, and it seems to have quite a bit of a following amongst MAC users.
- Nails | MAC does offer solutions for nail fanatics, including lacquer (color coat), overlacquer (top coat), and underlacquer (base coat). There is a very small range of permanent colors to the nail lacquer line (it is rumored that they are revamping the formula), but some colors to look into would be Rocker, Spicemix, and Nocturnelle.
- Fragrance | There are five fragrances offered by MAC, from MV 1 (light feminine scent), MV2, MV3 to Hue: Turquatic and Hue: Pinkaura. There seems to be a split of those who enjoy the fragrances, and others who dislike them immensely.
- Accessories | Each year, MAC revamps, repromotes, or relaunches their line of bags, including MAC logo jacquard weave bags or classic black bags. They also have softsac bags which are really light and great for travel. In late 2007, MAC relaunched and added to their accessory line to include a range of travel containers emblazoned with the MAC logo, as well as sponges and puffs.
Confessions of a Beauty Addict: When your collection looms before you, growing by leaps and bounds, and you have no self-control to stop it from exploding, that is when you know you are a beauty addict. I spent tonight going through boxes of products I hadn’t yet organized to come up with a better system than a bunch of cardboard boxes scattered about my living room! I didn’t include a few things, like my MAC eyeshadow/blush palettes and regular, everyday products since they’re totally strewn all over my bathroom countertop, but there’s only so much one girl can organize in one night!
We all know I use a TV stand/dining cabinet as my main makeup storage, so some of this is old, but I did have to find homes for a whole lotta stuff… which means plenty of new things to see.
Share your photos of your collection! Send images to us, or simply link to them in the comments.
Check out my storage solution to the madness… Continue reading →
MAC Cosmetics: Guide For The Newly Addicted, Part 6
- Face | These are the brushes I could not live without: 129 (for blush and powder), 168/169 (to contour), 182 (for buffing), and 187 (for stippling). Brushes that are good, but you could get away with not having are: 150 (good for powders), 188 (smaller stippling, more precision), 183 (flat buffer), and 194 (concealing).
- Eyes | These are the brushes I could not live without: 210 (for precision lining), 219 (for lining with shadow, precise crease definition), 239 (shadow application), 249 (cream product application), and 266 (for upper lash line lining and brows). Brushes that are incredibly popular: 217 (blending), 222 (blending), and 224 (blending).
- Lips | I like the 318 because it is a retractable version of the 316, which makes it convenient for on the go. The 311 is nice, but I find I can line well with cremestick liner already.
- Sets | Once or twice a year, MAC puts out brush sets with four to five brushes in them. Each set comes with a brush bag and then four or five miniaturized brushes. Typically, they have a basic set, which includes both face and eye brushes; an eye brush set; and a face set. I always encourage newcomers to check these out as a great way to get quality brushes for less. They also make excellent travel options.
- SH vs. SE | SH stands for “Short Handled,” which means the brush is specially made for a certain launch or collection. It may be pink handled or ornately decorated, but the brushhead is of the same quailty as the typical version. SE stands for “Special Edition,” which tend to be short handled brushes included in brush sets. These are man-made, mass-produced, and do tend to have less quality than a full-sized version. However, they are packaged in sets, which are much less expensive than individual, full-size brushes making them a good deal. To be sure, I personally find that the difference in quailty is not really that big. I mostly can feel it in a fluffy brush like the 129, which does feel a bit rougher compared to the full-size version.
Do you have brand loyalty or do you use all sorts? Do you stick with just one brand, or do you have several favorites stashed away?
MAC Cosmetics: Guide For The Newly Addicted, Part 5
If I’m new, what are some good basics that I should get into first?
It is important to note that everybody is a little different, and their preferences for the type of makeup or kinds of products are not the same across the board. You should use this only as a guideline, but not as something that is universal to every person.
- Foundation | MAC has several varieties in foundation, and it is a good idea to go to your local MAC store to get color-matched and determine the appropriate foundation for you. Certain formulas are better for those who want full coverage, while others are preferential for light coverage. Lightweight formulas include Studio Mist, Select Tint, Select CoverUp, and Studio Stick. Medium coverage includes: Face & Body, Mineralize Satinfinish, Studio Fix Fluid, and Studio Fix (Powder). Heavier coverage includes: Studio Tech and Full Coverage.
- Powders | MAC offers a good range of different types of powder, including pressed and loose. Blot powder (pressed or loose) is designed to help reduce oil build-up for those with oilier skin. The line also offers several bronzing powder options and iridescent pressed powders/highlighters. Beauty powders, which are loose powder highlighters, are also fun to play around with.
- Concealer | While MAC offers several options for concealers, many rave about Select Cover-Up and Studio Stick Concealer. Studio Lights are great for specific kinds of concealing, like brightening dark circles.
- Powder Blushes | Pressed powder blushes are easy to use, and there is a large variety in colors to choose from. There are bold colors like Frankly Scarlet (deep red) to dark pinks like Dollymix to warm peach like Springsheen. Some blush colors that are often highly reviewed: Ambering Rose, Blushbaby, Breezy, Dame, Dollymix, Honour, Margin, Peachykeen, Springsheen, Sunbasque, and Well Dressed.
- Blushcremes | These are cream blushes, which means they give a bit of a shiny and dewy finish to cheeks once applied. These are ideally applied using a stippling brush like the 188. Some favorites are Blossoming, Brit Wit, Lilicent, and Sweet William.
- Cream Colour Bases | Similar to cream blushes, these are a creamy formula (though not as creamy as blushcremes) that are used as a multipurpose product, but they can be used to highlight and blush cheeks. Virgin Isle is gorgeous on apples of cheeks as well as lips. Pearl and Shell make amazing highlighters on cheekbones as well as on the inner tearducts.