Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

MAC Reflects Blue Glitter
MAC Reflects Blue Glitter

MAC Reflects Blue Glitter

Another permanent to PRO stores product is included in the upcoming Love & Water Collection: MAC Reflects Blue Glitter ($20.00 for 0.15 oz.). It’s described as a “sparkling blue.” It’s more like white glitter that shifts between blue and blue-violet. It’s iridescent and really needs to be seen in person to see the beauty of it, which is the case for most glitters! MAC’s glitters are not recommended for eye use, so buyer beware. Some suggested uses for glitter: nail polish, hair (add it to gel/mousse/pomade), or body (add it to a cream/lotion). I suspect that Make Up For Ever #7 Diamond Powder is fairly similar (which says it can be applied to eyes).

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Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

MAC Naval Blue Pigment
MAC Naval Blue Pigment

MAC & Chen Man – Love & Water Collection: Naval Blue Pigment

It’s the lone pigment in the upcoming Love & Water Collection, but MAC Naval Blue Pigment ($20.00 for 0.15 oz.) is a great pick to repromote, as it is part of the permanent PRO range (and it’s been in a few sets before, if I remember correctly!). MAC describes it as a “deep smoky blue.” It’s a dark navy blue with a hint of purple–all of the blues in this launch seem to have this kiss of purple–that makes it a real pain to photograph, because sometimes it looks purpler than it ought! It’s similar to MAC Blue Storm, which came out this past fall (and was a repromote then). It’s also similar to Givenchy Lune Mordoree.

Pigments can be used wet or dry, but they tend to perform their best when applied damp or with MAC’s Mixing Medium (which is a clear liquid with an adhesive base, so it adheres and smoothes out better when you go to apply it). MAC actually says that the pigment itself contains ingredients that will make the pigments adhere to the skin and are long-lasting. Pigments tend to apply a little muted and can be more prone to fall out (given that it is a loose product) when applied dry, and it really needs to be used damp to have it adhere to the lid at all. When I tested out pigments based on how MAC described their formula, I was able to get eight hours of wear with minor creasing and fading only if I used them damp (over bare skin). If I used them with MAC’s Mixing Medium, then there were no fading or creasing issues even after twelve hours or if used over an eyeshadow primer.

The Glossover

coming-soon

MAC Naval Blue Pigment Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
MAC makes an excellent loose color product if you combine it with a wet or adhesive base, because they have a good formula that enables the color to bind well when damp and stay vibrant all day--but when used dry or alone, they tend to under-perform.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

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Wednesday, February 8th, 2012

Video Review: MAC Vera Collection

First impressions and swatches for the MAC Vera collection that will launch in-stores on the 9th (previously the 16th).  Don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel! :)

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012

Video Review: MAC Shop MAC, Cook MAC Collection

First impressions and swatches for the MAC Shop MAC, Cook MAC collection that will launch in-stores on the 9th.  Don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel! :)

Monday, February 6th, 2012

MAC Hot 'n' Saucy Tendertone
MAC Hot ‘n’ Saucy Tendertone

MAC Shop MAC, Cook MAC: Tendertones

In the collection, there are four limited edition shades of MAC Tendertone Lip Balm ($15.00 for 0.20 fl. oz.), which are: Hot ‘n’ Saucy (soft cherry red), Hush, Hush (sheer gold with yellow gold pearl), Purring (sheer tangerine with pearl), and Tread Gently (soft lime green with yellow pearl).

  • Hot ‘n’ Saucy is a watermelon pink once applied. It looks cherry red in the pot, but when it’s applied, it really just provides lips with a tint of red. Hourglass Primal looks similar when applied. Urban Decay Red Light is a bit similar but settles into lines more.
  • Hush, Hush is a golden beige with gold shimmer. There’s no real color, but it adds champagne and gold shimmer and a glossy sheen. A warm sheer gloss will provide similar color, so there are lots of dupes.
  • Purring is a sheer tangerine orange. I have no idea why MAC Described this as having pearl, because it doesn’t appear to have any shimmer–it has the same shimmer-less look as Hot ‘n’ Saucy. On my lips, it adds warmth and gives them a peach tint. MAC Kumquat looks a bit similar but more pigmented and it has orange-gold shimmer.
  • Tread Gently is a sheer green-shimmered balm. Like Hush, Hush, there’s no real color, just pastel green shimmer. I think the only shade that’s really going to be similar that I can think of is MAC Spring Bean, which may be a little more yellowing.

Tendertones have SPF 12 and are supposed to combine the glossiness of a gloss with the moisture of a lip balm. MAC describes their scent as “strawberry-kiwi.” It’s very, very sweet, and a little too synthetic for me, but it’s a sweet, fruit-based scent. The texture is like a gel-like balm that glides across lips easily and smoothes out if you press your lips together. It’s non-sticky, and these wore for three hours or less on me. I tried wearing some of these to bed, but they didn’t wear long enough so I woke up with slightly parched lips. They feel good when they’re applied, and they aren’t drying; they’re hydrating while they’re on but don’t seem to have prolonged benefits from the past few days I’ve been testing them.

I’m not a big fan of lip balms that are packaged in pots–it’s better than a dysfunctional squeeze-tube that splits in your pocket–but application on-the-go is more difficult. This is a product I’d only use at home, where I could use a clean spatula or brush to take the product out and then apply it. It’s housed in a glass jar with a screw-top lid (very much like Paint Pots).

I’ve been holding off on this review, because I really wanted to give this product a few days of testing, since it’s not a formula I’ve used in years. The way I review products today is ten-fold better than I did before; the process is much more systematic and technical. They’re good, and if they were in a tube, they’d be something I’d consider using more often. Lip balm is a tough category to crack with me–it’s hard for me to get enthused about a lip balm that’s good, or even really good, because I’ve found a holy grail lip balm that keeps beating out the products I try.

One thing I do really like about these is that they’re really comfortable to wear, are moisturizing for the time they’re on and maybe a wee bit after it wears away, and they provide a little extra oomph, whether it’s a tint of color or a hint of shimmer. They’re a good, solid product.  I’ll reach for something else when I want my lips to be totally hydrated and pillow-soft, but when I want a little extra color or shimmer, I’ll definitely keep it in mind.

The Glossover

product

MAC Shop MAC, Cook MAC Tendertones Review, Photos, Swatches

A-
One thing I do really like about these is that they're really comfortable to wear, are moisturizing for the time they're on and maybe a wee bit after it wears away, and they provide a little extra oomph, whether it's a tint of color or a hint of shimmer. They're a good, solid product. I'll reach for something else when I want my lips to be totally hydrated and pillow-soft, but when I want a little extra color or shimmer, I'll definitely keep it in mind.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

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Sunday, February 5th, 2012

MAC Strawberry Patch Crushed Metallic Pigment
MAC Strawberry Patch Crushed Metallic Pigment Stack

MAC Vera: Strawberry Patch Crushed Metallic Pigment Stack

MAC Strawberry Patch Crushed Metallic Pigment Stack ($34.00 for 0.21 oz.) has four shades: Moon Rose (bright dark pink), Rose Light (metallic yellow pink), Star Crystal (pink champagne), and Strawberry Patch (light blue pink).

  • Moon Rose is a bright medium-dark pink. There’s a subtle red base to it, so it does not turn fuchsia. Urban Decay Woodstock is brighter and cooler toned. MAC Bright Fuchsia is redder and brighter. Inglot #450 is a bit more burgundy.
  • Rose Light is a light-medium rose pink with yellow undertones. It looks very different from the pot–it almost looks like a coral in the pot. Definitely a shade you have to swatch! Inglot #399 is fairly similar. Giorgio Armani Sweet Fire is less pink.  This shade is a repromote from holiday.
  • Star Crystal is a peach-tinted white. It’s a bit darker compared to MAC Pearl. MAC Snow Season is darker. Urban Decay Midnight 15 is cooler-toned.
  • Strawberry Patch is a light-medium pink with lilac shimmer-sheen. This was really, really chunky and harder to work with compared to the other three shades in the stack. Urban Decay Hot Pants is a bit similar though the finish is very different. MAC Swish is not as blue-based.

You can read a more in-depth review of the formula itself here. As more of a high-level summary, these are supposed to have lots of color payoff with a strong metallic finish that is crease-resistant and long-wearing. Technique is key to using these successfully, as you really need to crush the bits and bobs of pigment before applying it. By doing this, you’ll achieve smoother textures and longer wear without fall out.

Strawberry Patch was the only shade that was difficult to work with; it had a rather chunky texture that was difficult to crush well, so it certainly requires more patience.  The other three shades were easier to use, though, as they were finer and softer, so they would apply smoother without a lot of attention to technique.

The Glossover

product

MAC Strawberry Patch Crushed Metallic Pigment Stack Review, Photos, Swatches

B+
Strawberry Patch was the only shade that was difficult to work with; it had a rather chunky texture that was difficult to crush well, so it certainly requires more patience. The other three shades were easier to use, though, as they were finer and softer, so they would apply smoother without a lot of attention to technique.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

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