Friday, June 1st, 2012

MAC Keep It Casual Casual Colour Lip & Cheek Colour
MAC Keep It Casual Casual Colour Lip & Cheek Colour

MAC Keep It Casual Lip & Cheek Colour

MAC Keep It Casual Casual Colour Lip & Cheek Colour ($20.00 for 0.43 fl. oz.) is described as a “warm wine.” It’s a muted red that turns a little raspberry red-like when it’s blended out. It looks a little like MAC Mocha when applied sheer on cheeks. MAC Mighty Aphrodite is pinker. Smashbox Blushing/Peony is similar. On lips, it’s a raspberry red with a muted quality, and it’s opaque with little product needed. NARS Flamenco is redder. NARS Afghan Red is darker. Guerlain Rose Bengale is a smidgen lighter and has shimmer. Guerlain Guet-Apens is more berry-hued. MAC Positively Dashing is more berry, less pink. MAC Deliciously Forbidden has less red.

For an in-depth review of the formula, please see this post. The main takeaways were that as a blush, this yields a dewy finish that might be just the wrong side of dewy for some, but it may be the perfect recipe for those with drier skin; as a lip color, the finish is more like a satin matte, and it has a slightly clingy nature that works as a way to make the color lightweight and very natural-looking.

This shade in particular is one of the more intense shades, so it does have a lot more color payoff, which means it’s best to use a lighter hand with it. It’s very blendable, but it’s also incredibly buildable–this will be a real stunner on deeper complexions.  I tested the wear of this yesterday, and it managed to wear as a blush for about seven hours, which was pretty good, and on the lips, just under six hours.

The Glossover

LE
product

Keep It Casual

A-
This reads like an autumnal hue, even though it's certainly wearable during the summer, but it will make for a nice transitional blusher later on this year. It will be really lovely on darker complexions, too.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Thursday, May 31st, 2012

MAC Have a Lovely Day! Casual Colour Lip & Cheek Colour
MAC Have a Lovely Day! Casual Colour Lip & Cheek Colour

MAC Have a Lovely Day! Lip & Cheek Colour

MAC Have a Lovely Day! Casual Colour Lip & Cheek Colour ($20.00 for 0.43 fl. oz.) is described as a “neutral nude.” It’s a rosy, almost mauve-toned shade with hints of beige. Tarte Exposed is browner. Burberry Cameo is a bit darker, plummier. On the lips, it’s pinker, less visible mauve tones. MAC Annemiek is lighter. MAC Angel is pinker. Chanel Candeur is lighter.

For an in-depth review of the formula, please see this post. The main takeaways were that as a blush, this yields a dewy finish that might be just the wrong side of dewy for some, but it may be the perfect recipe for those with drier skin; as a lip color, the finish is more like a satin matte, and it has a slightly clingy nature that works as a way to make the color lightweight and very natural-looking.

When I tested Have a Lovely Day! on the lips, it wore for four hours. I’ve been testing out the wear of this shade since six am, so after five hours, it’s a bit faded and could use a reapplication. The texture is soft, creamy, and incredibly blendable; it’s buildable to true-to-pot color, but this lighter shade is impossible to overdo. It will be particularly great as an everyday shade on light to medium skin tones.

The Glossover

product

MAC Have a Lovely Day! Lip & Cheek Colour Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
The texture is soft, creamy, and incredibly blendable; it's buildable to true-to-pot color, but this lighter shade is impossible to overdo. It will be particularly great as an everyday shade on light to medium skin tones.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Thursday, May 31st, 2012

MAC Evening Stroll Casual Colour Lip & Cheek Colour
MAC Evening Stroll Casual Colour Lip & Cheek Colour

MAC Evening Stroll Lip & Cheek Colour

MAC Evening Stroll Casual Colour Lip & Cheek Colour ($20.00 for 0.43 fl. oz.) is described as a “violet cream.” It’s a red-toned purple that can look pinker when sheered out, but it’s still more purple than it is pink, no matter how sheer you go. If you’ve ever wanted a “true purple” blush, this gets you close. I couldn’t think of a comparable blush shade; MAC Azalea Blossom isn’t as purple, and MAC Sakura is much pinker. If you’re looking to replicate it as a lip color, MAC Seasoned Plum is slightly darker, MAC Playtime is pinker, MAC Goes and Goes is darker, less pink, and MAC Go For It is slightly less pink.

This is a new (and limited edition) product and shade. MAC describes the new formula as “[v]ersatile, lightweight all-in-one colour for cheeks and lips … [c]reamy, super-blendable, barely there” with vitamin E. I think the best way to think of this product is like this: you’ve spent all day at the beach, and you don’t have time to go home and get ready for an evening out, so you quickly pat on one of these on your lips and cheeks–you look a little dressed up, but it’s never over-the-top, and it’s always natural and easy-going. That’s the best way I can describe the formula in a big picture sense. (The only problem is that this scenario isn’t exactly hygenic usage of this product.)

As a Cream Blush

If you like matte and loathe words like “dewy” and “glowy,” this isn’t the right cream blush formula for you. These are rather dewy on my normal-to-dry skin, and they never seem to dry down completely for me. It feels a little “oily” to the touch; it doesn’t seem oily or greasy, but there’s some kind of slickness that enables it to be pushed and moved around even after a couple of hours after application. I was expecting it to wear off quickly as a result, and while the two shades I’ve trialed (Evening Stroll and Weekend Getaway) so far haven’t made it a full eight hours, they both wore for six hours before starting to look faded.

The consistency is soft, pliant, and creamy without being too thick (it’s not as thin as the Cremeblend Blushes, but it’s not as thick as the Blushcremes were), so it spreads and applies over the skin easily. Though it’s not sticky, there is transfer when I pressed my finger against my cheek or even just put a cloth against it (I wanted to pretend that it was clothing, because there have been many times where I’ve transferred makeup onto my fiance’s shirt). Because not a lot of product is applied to begin with, it’s not as if it all “kisses” off, but some does transfer over. It is vanilla-scented, though I didn’t notice any odd taste when using it on my lips.

I found the best application method was using fingers, because it enabled it to melt better against the skin and blend out evenly. I also liked the 188 and 130 brushes, and both achieved a similar result, they just took a little longer. It blends well over foundation and on bare skin, though I prefer the look of it over foundation, because I don’t have perfect skin, and it just seemed to make my cheeks look splotchier than usual more often than not, and I felt like my pores were beacons in the night, but I’m also more sensitive to “dewy” finishes.

The spectrum of dewy to oily is always hard to judge, because it really ends up being a matter of taste. There are times where I love the glowy, dewy finish of a product, and a reader will comment about how oily my skin looks–and there are times where I think something makes my skin look oily, and then a reader will comment about the glow! On my skin, it read slightly more pronounced than natural dewiness finish–there was a definite sheen and shine that went and went for nearly the entire time it wore.

As a Lip Color

Oddly, though, when it is applied to lips, it has a tendency to really dry down and set, almost feeling clingy without being sucked into every nook and cranny on the lips. It is incredibly lightweight and natural-looking on the lips. Despite the thin consistency on the lips, it’s not drying. It wasn’t moisturizing, but  it wasn’t drying. I recommend using lip balm prior to applying this product, and possibly exfoliating lips, because it does cling and will emphasize any flakes or roughness on the lips. It’s more forgiving than a true matte lipstick, but it can do so. On the lips, I was able to get four hours of wear out of Evening Stroll.

MAC was very generous with this product; it contains four times the amount of most lipsticks or twice the amount of most blushes (for instance, this is over double the size of the Cremeblend Blushes). This is great, except, this is a tub of product that is best applied with fingers yet cream products are much more prone to inhibiting bacteria. I would use this by taking a small amount out with a clean utensil (like a cosmetic spatula), and then using your fingers at that point. Otherwise, I think this is the type of product that will easily spoil before you finish it. A little goes a long way, both on cheeks and on lips, so this oversized pot of color will last you quite awhile.

The Glossover

LE
product

Evening Stroll

A-
I think a lot of people will love these, but there will be some who will not. If you don't like dewy finishes, or if you have really oily skin around your cheeks, I'd look elsewhere for a cream blush option. If you're looking for better wear out of your blush, I'd also steer you somewhere else. I liked it best as a lip color, surprisingly.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Friday, May 25th, 2012

Bobbi Brown Gold Shimmer Cheek Glow
Bobbi Brown Gold Shimmer Cheek Glow

Bobbi Brown Gold Shimmer Cheek Glow

Bobbi Brown Gold Shimmer Cheek Glow ($39.00 for 0.31 oz.) is described simply as a “yellow gold.” It’s exactly that: a sheer, sparkling traditional gold, so it has warm, yellow undertones. Guerlain Terracotta Sun in the City has a comparable look but is a more opaque product. Chanel Empreinte de Chanel is more orange. MAC Sun Rush is slightly more orange. Chanel Shimmering Tweed is also similar.

According to Bobbi Brown, the Shimmer Cheek Glow is a gel and powder hybrid, and it’s supposed to give a “just back from vacation glow.” I think the brand should have done a better job describing this product, particularly the texture and the overall effect of the product. It’s very, very sparkly. It’s not really shimmer–the particles are larger than that, and the way it looks against the skin is more like Bobbi Brown’s Sparkle eyeshadows. This feels a little wetter, more gel-like compared to the Sparkle eyeshadows, but I felt like they were comparable. Also, something I noticed while photographing the compact was that the product had separated from the edges, and it will slide around. I’d describe it as shrinkage.

On the skin, I’m not sold. It’s too sheer and ends up giving a sprinkling of sparkles but doesn’t evenly highlight the area. I kept focusing on my cheeks and seeing the attention being drawn to my pores. This–to me–is that disco ball effect that some worry about with shimmery, frosted, and more metallic highlighters. It gives a certain look that does appeal, but I don’t think it’s something I’d reach for regularly; it’s a glistening, almost wet-like sparkle and metallic glow. I love that look on lips, but not so much on cheeks, because I think it emphasizes imperfections on the skin. The sparkle also travels while you wear it, so you may find sparkle on your nose, chin, or even in your mouth. It wore about four and a half hours on me before it seems to have disappeared or traveled elsewhere.

The Glossover

LE
product

Gold

C
I'm not keen on the short wear time (a mere four and a half hours), amount of traveling ("fall out" in a sense) of the sparkles, and the way it sits and lies on the skin--just seems to emphasize every pore and line on my skin!

Product

7/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Friday, May 18th, 2012


MAC Refined Golden Bronzing Powder

MAC Hey, Sailor: Refined Golden Bronzing Powder

MAC Refined Golden Bronzing Powder ($24.00 for 0.35 oz.) is described as a “finely spun golden with soft pearl finish.” It’s a medium-dark tan brown with warm undertones–a little red, a little yellow–and gold sparkle. This is the darkest/deepest bronzer of the launch, so for more than just a warm tint on deeper complexions, this would be your best bet (though you might consider other shades within the permanent range). This is like a darker version of MAC Soft Sand. Urban Decay Toasted is more red-toned.

The texture is soft, but a little dry, but it applies smoothly and evenly on the skin. I didn’t have any trouble blending it out (not like Soft Sand), and it’s very buildable, so you can go for softer, lighter coverage or intensify it, depending on your preferences and needs. I didn’t test this specific version of Refined Golden, but I tested one I already had (as it gets repromoted often) a couple of weeks ago in anticipation of the launch, and it wore for about seven hours.

The Glossover

product

MAC Refined Golden Bronzing Powder Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
This shade is the most suitable for deeper complexions from the four available in this collection. It can still be used on lighter skin tones, because it is a buildable and blendable product.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

7.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Friday, May 18th, 2012


MAC Nude on Board Pro Longwear Bronzing Powder

MAC Hey, Sailor: Pro Longwear Bronzing Powders

MAC Hey, Sailor! Pro Longwear Bronzing Powder ($28.00 for 0.42 oz.) is a new (but limited edition) formula that features two shades: Nude on Board (bronzy, yellow tone) and Sun Dipped (dirty red tone). This new formula promises to yield “sheer-low transparent coverage” with “long wear” and a “natural finish.”

  • Nude on Board is a soft light-medium golden tan with subtle gold shimmer-sheen. On my skin tone (about NC30 at the moment), it adds subtle warmth and golden glow. This would be the shade most suitable for light to medium complexions. MAC Soft Sand is darker, redder. MAC GIve Me Sun! is a little more orange.
  • Sun Dipped is a light-medium brownish tan with a subtle beige-gold sheen. This shade is a little more buildable than Nude on Board, but it’s still more appropriate for light to medium-dark than medium to dark. I think it could still add a subtle warmth to all complexions, though. MAC Soft Sand is redder. MAC Golden is a little lighter. Chanel Sable Beige is a little yellower, more golden.

Side-by-side, Nude on Board seems lighter and warmer compared to Sun Dipped, which looks a bit dirty, brown, and gray. When swatched, however, the differences get minimized. Nude on Board is distinctly golden, yellow-toned in comparison, but Sun Dipped isn’t really darker, just a little less warm and it has more of a sheen than a shimmer. As I’m writing this review, I’m looking at them side-by-side on my forearm, and in my office lighting, it’s hard to tell them apart. The same is true when they’re applied to the cheeks! Moral of the story: you don’t really need both.  I anticipate that cooler complexions may see more of a difference.

The texture of the Pro Longwear Bronzing Powders is very, very soft and smooth–these powders are incredibly finely-milled and feel like silk against the skin. They apply even better; they apply softly, evenly, and blend out effortlessly.  It’s almost a creamy feel, because of how silky the powder is.  When I tested out the wear, Nude on Board lasted for eight hours without fading or migrating.  After ten hours, it was a little faded and patchy.

The Glossover

product

MAC Hey, Sailor Pro Longwear Bronzing Powders Review, Photos, Swatches

A+
Both of these are some of the best products from the collection. It's a shame that the formula is limited edition--what's the point?--but you get so much in each compact, it should last you until MAC repromotes it next summer (assuming they do).

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
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