Thursday, February 17th, 2011

MAC Viva Glam Gaga 2 Lipstick
MAC Viva Glam Gaga 2 Lipstick

MAC Viva Glam Gaga 2 Lipstick

MAC Viva Glam Gaga 2 Lipstick ($14.50 for 0.10 oz.) is described as a “light warm beige.” It’s a peach-tinged pale beige-nude with an amplified finish. The amplified finish gives is a creamier consistency, more color pigmentation, and a semi-matte finish. I did find this shade a little on the drier side, so I would recommend prepping lips accordingly (keep the moisturized, exfoliate prior).

my thoughts on the formula: MAC Lipsticks are vanilla-scented but taste-free. I typically get four hours of wear, but some of the lighter lustre and glaze finishes tend to disappear by hour three. Amplified cremes and amplified finishes, however, tend to go beyond four, but with lighter shades like Viva Glam Gaga 2, I expect around four.

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  • Product: 25/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: The warm undertones are very slight and subtle; they’re not overwhelming, so this nude will still work on cooler skin tones. It’s like a peach version of Creme d’Nude; lighter version of Peachstock. I wish it was more forgiving on lips–perhaps less dry–because it tends to show imperfections on the lips.

where to buy: Nordstrom

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Thursday, February 17th, 2011

MAC Viva Glam Gaga 2 Lipglass
MAC Viva Glam Gaga 2 Lipglass

MAC Viva Glam Gaga 2 Lipglass

MAC Viva Glam Gaga 2 Lipglass ($14.50 for 0.17 fl. oz.) is described as a “light neutral pinked beige.” In reality, I found it more of a neutral light-medium beige with subtle white micro-shimmer. The finish was creamy, not quite milky, but as such, there was some settling into lip lines. It is a thicker gloss, too, so be careful when applying it to ensure an even finish (also avoiding smooshing your lips together too much, as it will push around the gloss and making it look uneven).

my thoughts on the formula: MAC Lipglasses are vanlla-scented, and they are typically thick and sticky. However, because of their tackiness, they do tend to wear better and longer (four hours for me).

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  • Product: 25/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: The color itself is a great neutral nude; I do see it working for most skin tones and under tones, assuming you like nudes. It’s not too pale, not too deep that it’s more brown than beige. Surprisingly, I couldn’t come up with a great MAC dupe for this shade; it is closest to Illicit but it’s less orange.  C-Thru would be your closest within the permanent range but much paler.

where to buy: Nordstrom

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Friday, February 4th, 2011

MAC Spirit of Truth Nail Lacquer
MAC Spirit of Truth Nail Lacquer

MAC Wonder Woman: Spirit of Truth

MAC Spirit of Truth Nail Lacquer ($15.00 for 0.34 fl. oz.) is a creamy is a deep navy blue. It has a cream finish, but when it dries down, it looks almost like pleather, because it loses a lot of its glossiness. (If you want it shiny, just add a top coat, like Seche Vite). MAC describes this shade as a “navy blue,” which is a fair assessment. Like Obey Me, this shade was plenty pigmented; it was nearly opaque in one coat, though I did two. The formula was equally as impressive as Obey Me with its creaminess and how evenly and smoothly it applied on the nail.

my thoughts on the formula: Historically, MAC doesn’t have a great reputation for their nail lacquers; in fact, some of the feedback I’ve seen on MAC’s nail lacquers mirror Chanel’s! Often interesting and different colors, but many complain of chipping or poor wear. I haven’t experienced this with MAC’s nail lacquers (or Chanel’s). MAC polishes always wear a full week for me, with no chipping, and minor tip wear. Sometimes the formula itself doesn’t lend itself to the most beautiful application, but their creams are most consistent. Spirit of Truth, however, is an exemplary shade from MAC’s polish range.

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  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: This blue will flatter both cool and warm skin tones, because of its deep hue. It is a richly pigmented shade, too, which is always a nice find.

where to buy: MAC

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Friday, February 4th, 2011

MAC Obey Me Nail Lacquer
MAC Obey Me Nail Lacquer

MAC Wonder Woman: Obey Me

MAC Obey Me Nail Lacquer ($15.00 for 0.34 fl. oz.) is a creamy, blue-based red. One of the easiest ways to determine the undertones of a red is to use it sheerly; blue-based reds often look a little pink. MAC describes this shade as a “true red,” and I think it is certainly close, because it doesn’t read cool (and certainly not warm, since it has no orange in its base), but it does have an inkling of blue in it at the very least. This shade has excellent pigmentation, almost a one-coat masterpiece, though I did two. The formula also was insanely fluid and creamy–one of MAC’s bests–it wasn’t too thick or thin, and it applied smoothly and evenly.  It does dry down to an interesting finish–it’s not that glossy on its own; instead, it almost looks like pleather.

my thoughts on the formula: Historically, MAC doesn’t have a great reputation for their nail lacquers; in fact, some of the feedback I’ve seen on MAC’s nail lacquers mirror Chanel’s! Often interesting and different colors, but many complain of chipping or poor wear. I haven’t experienced this with MAC’s nail lacquers (or Chanel’s). MAC polishes always wear a full week for me, with no chipping, and minor tip wear. Sometimes the formula itself doesn’t lend itself to the most beautiful application, but their creams are most consistent. Obey Me, however, is an exemplary shade from MAC’s polish range.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: Excellent pigmentation, lovely formula, and the color is certainly something many could wear. It is, however, a red cream, and as such, if you are a nail polish collector, I don’t doubt you have something similar.

where to buy: MAC

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Tuesday, February 1st, 2011


MAC Lightfully Bright Comparison Session

MAC Lightfully Bright Lipglass Dupes & Comparisons

As promised, here are comparison swatches for the four new and limited edition lipglasses from Lightfully Bright.  These are sheerer shades, so they are easier to replicate, especially when actually worn, as their effect is subtle.

  • ASTRO COOL is less pink in comparison to Lightning and Pas-de-deux, while it is a touch more lavender than She-Zam. They all look comparable on lips, with She-Zam being the closest.
  • ATMOSPHERIC is similar to Like Venus, just slightly darker. It is also comparable to Rags to Riches when worn, as it is a darker pink, but it does have gold shimmer in it,so it isn’t as cool-toned. Frozen Dream is more pigmented and cooler-toned, while Lavender Wind is purpler.
  • ETHEREAL is a slightly darker and more shimmery version of Chillin’, while it is a lighter version of Best of Breed. It looks more like Chillin’ when worn.
  • OUTER SPACE is similar in color to Snowscene, but it is less milky in its base. Almondine has a similar milkiness but is more of a white gold.

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Tuesday, February 1st, 2011


MAC Lipglass: Astro Cool, Atmospheric, Ethereal, Outer Space

MAC Lightfully Bright Lipglass Swatches, Photos, Review

The Lightfully Bright Collection contains four skincare products (which I am not currently reviewing, since skincare requires 6-8 weeks of testing and I already decide on what to try 3-4 months in advance to plan accordingly) along with four lipglass shades. Each lipglass retails for $14.50 and comes in standard MAC packaging. The shades include: Astro Cool (light lavender with pink pearl), Atmospheric (pink with blue pearl), Ethereal (pale blue with pink pearl), and Outer Space (white with pink pearl).

  • Astro Cool is a pale silvered lavender with flecks of white, silver, and pale lavender shimmer. It just looks like clear gloss with lavender and white shimmer on my lips–it does seem to mute my natural lip color a tad. It looks very similar to She-Zam Dazzleglass–slightly more lavender but hardly noticeable when worn.
  • Atmospheric is a light, neutral pink with silver, white, and teal shimmer. Though I have no idea where mine went off to, it is completely different from the original Atmospheric from Blue Storm (’07). It looks like near-clear gloss with white shimmer on my lips. It is similar to Like Venus Dazzleglass.
  • Ethereal is a pale, cloudy blue with pink, white, and teal-blue shimmer. It gives my natural lip color a cooler tone to it, while adding a lot of silver shimmer. It’s like a shimmery version of Chillin’ Cremesheen Glass or a lighter version of Best of Breed Lipglass.
  • Outer Space is a pale, milky white with pink and white shimmer. It looks like a semi-sheer milky pink with white shimmer on my lips. This is the most pigmented of the four. It is similar to Snowscene. In the tube, it looks very white, but when swatched, there is a lot of pink sheen, so it is also a lighter version of glosses like Cultured, Docile,or Icescape Lipglasses.

As you can tell, these glosses are all quite sheer.  They are great for those who want shimmer without much on lips or else as something to layer over lipstick.  These are all cool-toned, so they will add some coolness and shimmer over any lipstick.

my thoughts on the formula: MAC Lipglasses are vanlla-scented, and they are typically thick and sticky. However, because of their tackiness, they do tend to wear better and longer (four hours for me). The Lightfully Bright Lipglasses seem like they have a finer shimmer, though I wouldn’t describe it as micro-shimmer.

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  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

final thoughts: These shades are sheer, which makes them easier to dupe, because on lips, they look more like clear gloss with shimmer than anything else.  (Usually, when you have more noticeable color, the nuances between colors can be more apparent, but with sheer, there is less to differentiate shades.)  I kind of feel like for as cool as these names are (and the theme), I would have loved to see the shimmer play more with the light; perhaps more reflective or yield a duochrome finish/sheen.

where to buy: MAC Cosmetics

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