MAC Pro Longwear Concealer
The Mysterious Case of Tired Face
MAC Pro Longwear Concealer ($16.50 for 0.30 fl. oz.) has been a product I’ve felt compelled to test for the past two weeks straight. I don’t like to review a product until I have a good handle on how I feel about it, and I’m not big on reviewing anything that I’m waffling over.
Admittedly, I’ve been sleeping a lot less and not nearly as well as I usually do, which is good news for concealer-testing purposes, given that my under eye circles are more prevalent this week than they normally are! Often when I’m running on low sleep, I suffer from a phenomenon I’ve named TIREDFACE. The primary symptom is tightness around the eye area (at least for me). So, one of the things I’ve had going on has been this feeling of tightness when I’ve been wearing this concealer, and I wasn’t sure whether it was due to the concealer itself or more to the exhaustion. For about three days, I wore concealer under one eye and none under the other. The concealer does contribute to some of the feeling of tightness.
The concealer does last a miraculous twelve hours, though, without creasing or budging. It is a very dry product, and if you have a lot of dryness around the areas you’re trying to conceal, I think this may emphasize those areas rather than hide them. I felt like it pulled a little underneath my eyes (which is where I used it most of the time), which is why I felt that tightness despite no discernible dryness in the area. It conceals good, though for the heaviest of dark circles, it may not be enough, and it’s difficult to layer this product for additional coverage due to its fast drying time.
It has a creamy feel when dispensed, and it’s not too thick–there’s a good consistency to it, but it dries quickly, so you’ll have to work just as quickly. I actually recommend doing one eye at a time, because if you don’t move fast enough, it can be difficult to blend out! I also liked using a flat concealer brush like the 195 for application; the 217 seemed to sheer it out too much. I have noticed that it will settle a little into fine lines if you don’t blend out the area first. Once you’ve blended it out, though, it won’t creep back in.
I originally tried this in NC30, but it’s definitely a little on the orange side. I received a sample of NC20, so I figured I might as well give that a shot, though I’m ultimately thinking that NC25 or even NW25 might be the best match for me (I am NC25). NC20 seemed like a pretty good match, but next time I’m at the counter, I’m going to grab samples of NC25 and NW25 to see if either of those is a better match.
I was incredibly frustrated by the inclusion of a pump that–wait for it–pumps out enough to cover half your face in concealer. If the technology is not available to create a pump that easily distributes just enough for the product’s purpose, why use something inferior? It is certainly possible to get just the right amount out, but after two weeks of use, I couldn’t do so consistently. Sometimes I got just enough, sometimes a nice blob that went down the sink. If you’re having pump troubles like I have had, I recommend pumping once or twice into a small sampling jar. No need to pump it all into there, just whatever excess–that way you can go back and use that during the week and not let it go to waste.
All in all, this concealer does last all day long for me. It doesn’t crease later on during the day, and this is a big deal for a lot of us. I do feel a little tightness around my under eye when I wear this, though, so I probably won’t wear this every day. It’s definitely worth trying out for its long-wearing prowess–but if you can, grab a sample, so you can find your shade and decide if you like it without having to purchase from the get-go.
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- Product: 28/30
- Value: 8/10
- Ease of Use: 4/5
- Packaging: 2/5
RECOMMENDATION: If you have really dry skin that you’re looking to use this concealer on, I think this may be too drying and end up just looking cakey on you. The wear of this is fantastic, and the coverage is good for light to moderate under eye circles or blemishes. If you have really heavy under eye circles, this might not be enough coverage. Overall, it’s worth a try, particularly if you’re able to grab a sample.
Before / After
Concealer Reviews: Bobbi Brown Tinted Eye Brightener
Bobbi Brown Tinted Eye Brightener ($38.00 for 1.5ml) is a lightweight concealer/eye brightener. This is a long-standing product, but it was recently repackaged into a pen delivery system. The original version was available in a pot form, which some found a bit messy. It always did a nice job of covering up undereye circles and instantly brightening the eyes on those hurried mornings, but I feel like the product in the new packaging just doesn’t do it for me–on all points!
Even though the pen makes it much more portable and easier to use on-the-go, because you don’t have to use a separate brush, and you also don’t have to worry so much about it drying out… It can also allow for more bacteria growth, since the product is coming into more direct contact with your skin and if you don’t clean or wipe off the brush, it can cause build-up. For that reason alone, I’ve just never been a huge fan of brush-type anything (gloss, concealer, whatever!). Because the product gets twisted up and delivered by being pushed up onto the brush, the product itself feels like it’s much thinner/runnier than the original pot version. I find this almost makes it easy to over-apply, because you don’t have the same level of control over how much squeezes out of the pen.
My last complaint is the size — they really reduced the amount of product you get and upped the price. It takes me awhile to get through a concealer (read: never), but I imagine for more dedicated concealer users, it can get pricey real quick. (It used to be $32 for 7ml as compared to $38 for 1.5ml!) I can get down with new packaging costs, upward costs, but this was a severe reduction in quantity (it’s not just 10%, it’s 7ml to 1.5ml — 5.5ml less!) along with a significant increase in price (it’s not just $1, it’s $6). If it was the same as it was before, in terms of quality, it might still be worth it, but it’s not! Bobbi Brown is not YSL (the most direct comparison I could find), which is $40 for 2.5 ml, so I wouldn’t expect Bobbi Brown to be priced higher than YSL (by the ml).
It performs nicely–it brightens and lightens my under eye enough to give me a fresher, more awake appearance. It doesn’t settle into fine lines or crease throughout the day, which are definitely two important necessities when it comes to an under eye concealer! It’s a little on the thin side, though, so while it certainly feels lightweight, those with darker under eye circles may find this doesn’t give them enough coverage.
I would skip this, to be honest. It’s not quite as good as the pot version, plus with the price increase and severe quantity decrease, it’s not good enough to fork over $38 for it. Though I haven’t tried it myself, I’ve heard good things about Bobbi Brown’s Creamy Concealer, so I’d probably recommend that if you were looking for a concealer from Bobbi Brown! Surprisingly, the Bobbi Brown website has a review system in place, and based on 52 reviews, the new Tinted Eye Brightener only has 3 stars–the Creamy Concealer has 282 reviews and 5 stars!
If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ!
- Product: 25/30
- Value: 4/10
- Ease of Use: 4/5
- Packaging: 3/5
Recommendation: Keep the new packaging in mind–it may or may not be your cup of tea; and the price may keep you on the hunt for a different concealer–maybe Bobbi’s Creamy Concealer instead…
Mario Badescu Drying Cream ($12.00)
When it comes to small, flesh-colored acne, this is the king for me. Whenever I spot any that crop up, I’ll smear a little of the Drying Cream on the area before I go to bed. In the morning, they’ve totally vanished, and I mean vanished! I’m pretty skeptical about acne spot treatments, especially how their ability to work quickly, but this one delivers (at least for me).
In fact, I noticed a few small fleshy bumps last night, put this on the area, and voila–no troubles this morning. I find this to be less drying than the Drying Lotion, which means I can use it more often and without fear of getting dry patches in exchange for clearer skin. (The Drying Lotion is fab, but I find I need to use it every other day or two to avoid drying my skin out too much!) This is also my go-to acne spot treatment if I “feel” one coming on.
Mario Badescu offers several acne spot treatments, and so far, I’ve liked all of them and found them to work on different types of acne. I know some of you would rather an all-in-one spot treatment, but in a way, knowing that each one is designed to work with specific types of acne makes me feel like they’re more efficient.
For $12 you got a big tub of Drying Cream–seriously, this will probably lose efficacy before you finish using it. I would prefer tube-packaging over an open jar, but it’s cheap enough where I don’t feel I’m breaking the bank rebuying it after a few months, you know? So any issue with packaging isn’t enough to keep me from loving this product.
Mario Badescu Buffering Lotion ($17.00)
The Buffering Lotion is formulated to help you cope with deep, cystic acne. It’s sulfur-based coupled with allantoin (helps with inflammation). Mario Badescu recommends using this before/after their Drying Mask as well. It’s good for combination and oily skin, and being normal-to-dry (and sometimes normal-to-barely-oily), it’s worked just fine for me.
What I like about the Buffering Lotion is it’s essentially clear. You shake it up, and put a drop or two on your finger, then massage over the blemish. You can lay makeup under or over it as you need to, so when you’ve got a painful bugger… you can treat him while you do your day-to-day activities. (Both the Drying Cream and Drying Lotion are less daytime friendly, if you’re actually leaving the house!)
I find I don’t use this very often, compared to the Drying Cream and Drying Lotion, which I use regularly. I think it’s because I prefer to treat mostly at night, and I’m often working at home for most of the day, so if I need to do some daytime treating, I’m not worried about pink patches on my face. (Though, I’m sure the UPS man wonder…)
It’s also harder to judge the efficacy of the Buffering Lotion simply because it’s treating nastier pimples that normally linger for at least a week, if not two (and sometimes take several days just to surface!), you know?
I personally suffer less from deep, painful pimples, too (less chances to try, LOL). However, the last time I had one, I would say that using this product in conjunction with the other acne spot treatments, it seemed like the painful pimple wasn’t painful for long and was gone within a week–which I was happy enough with. So it seems to work, but it’s not as quick as the other two, but it does have more work to do!
Yves Saint Laurent Touche Éclat Radiant Touch ($40.00) is an often celebrated product for concealing and hiding under eye circles. Technically, it is called a luminizing pen that is used to help brighten and highlight the skin. They recommend using it between the eyebrows, along the sides of the nose, and even on the chin and around the lips. It’s available in four shades: 1 Luminous Radiance (fair/light/medium with pink undertones), 2 Luminous Ivory (fair/light/medium with yellow or golden undertones), 3 Light Peach (warm/golden beige), and 4 Luminous Toffee (deep).
I bought shade #2 during Sephora’s Friends & Family sale last November, and at first, I worried it was far too light for me–but it was perfect. These are designed to run lighter than your skin tone, so don’t expect to try and color match it to your foundation! The whole point of the product is that it lightens areas that are normally darker or more pigmented, like your undereye circles, scars, hyperpigmentation, etc. So I expect this is part of the reason only four shades are available, because most people will find one that lightens to their specification.
The product itself is housed in a pen that has a brush at the end. You click the other end to get the product out onto the brush tip. When you first purchase, expect to do a lot of clicking! I had to click so many times, I swore I had a broken one! But alas, eventually, I finally hit pay dirt. I like the way the product is packaged, because you don’t need a separate concealer brush, nor do you have to worry about getting more concealer than you need. One or two clicks is plenty.
The formula of Touche Éclat is creamy, smooth, and designed to go on sheerly. It really does help disguise my undereye circles/bags after a week or two of not having slept well. I don’t use concealer on a regular basis, but when I need it, I really need it. I’ve found great results with Touche Éclat, and one of the best things about it is that it doesn’t sink into fine lines or creases underneath your eyes during or after application. It also doesn’t ball up when I’ve used it on top of an eye cream, which is a definitely plus. It is also nice to use to highlight the inner corner near your eye, too.
For the high price tag, you get a concealer that’s travel-friendly, easy to use, and will last you quite awhile. It’s not as if I have to replace it on a monthly basis. For me, it should last me at least a year. There’s quite a bit of product stored in the pen, so for me it’s worth it since it works quite well.
You can find yours at Sephora.com!
Benefit The Overnighter Gift Set ($38.00) is the classic Justine Case, plus their “hanky panky thong.” The Overnight Set includes California Kissin’, Eyecon, Benetint, and Some Kind-a Gorgeous. All of these products are designed to help make you look flawless even when you’re not feeling your best. Benetint is a classic lip tint, but it’s also great on cheeks, too. Eyecon helps to reduce the appearance of dark undereye circles–perfect for that late night out. California Kissin’ is a “smile brightening lip shine.” Some Kind-a Gorgeous is a foundation “faker”; it’s a translucent powder that helps to brighten your complexion. All in all, it’s a cute set, but you can grab the Justine Case set for $32 and save $6. It seems like you’re just paying for the thong. Of course, if you need a lacy pair of panties, then maybe the set is up your alley ** Edited: Looks like a few of you have purchased the panties alone for $18, so then this is a deal if you like thongs!
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