Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

Products pulled for Cham-Pale/Stylishly Yours Comparisons

MAC Stylishly Yours Dupes & Comparisons Swatches

  • Dark Diversion is a burgundy berry, while Macroviolet is a blackened violet with flecks of fuchsia-violet micro-shimmer. Very different.
  • Follow Your Fancy is redder than Off the Page, while Sugarpill Asylum is darker and more orange.
  • Madly Personal is a little darker and less frosted than Fuchsia, while Bright Fuchsia and Bold & Brash are both much brighter, deeper, and darker–the latter has a stronger iridescent fuchsia sheen. New Fixation is redder.
  • Neon Orange is slightly darker than Morange but the difference is very, very subtle.
  • Something New is a glossier version of NARS Schiap, while Smashbox Flirty is a lil’ sheerer and Girl About Town is a bit darker. Trimming Talk is frostier and lighter, but Most Popular is totally different.
  • Style Curve is similar to Show Orchid, which is brighter and more fuchsia, while Violetta is purpler and darker. Go For It is too purple, and Purple Rite is more plum than fuchsia. Love Forever is also similar but more fuchsia than purple.
  • Play It Proper is a very pale, powdery pink, and it’s really not much like Benefit Dandelion, Shell Pearl, Porcelain Pink, or Oh So Fair. Pearl Blossom is the closest, but the texture is so different; plus it has a sheen, rather than a powdery finish.
  • Too Chic is closest to NARS Albatross, which is a little yellower, while Chez Chez Lame is more beige. Benefit Dandelion is too peachy while Pearl Sunshine is significantly darker.
  • Madly Magenta is significantly more purple than both Show Orchid and Love Forever.
  • Movie Star Red is more pigmented but similar in color as Gesina, while Russian Red has less pink in its base.
  • Tickle Me Pink is closest to Viva Glam Gaga (slightly lighter and cooler) or Snob (cooler), but it is similar to Overtime, which is a yellower pink (almost looks peachy in comparison). Unlimited looks nothing like it.
  • Virgin Isle is a touch lighter than Vegas Volt, while Jazzed and Ever Hip are significantly lighter.

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Tuesday, December 28th, 2010

Products pulled for Cham-Pale/Stylishly Yours Comparisons

MAC Cham-Pale Dupes & Comparisons Swatches

  • Chez Chez Lame is darker and more beige in comparison to NARS Albatross, less pink compared to Sunsparked Pearl, and lighter and less brown compared to Soft & Gentle.
  • Rose Ole is slightly darker and less frosty than By Candlelight, while Stereo Rose is significantly darker and Porcelain Pink is a little lighter and pinker. Play It Proper doesn’t resemble it at all.
  • Chilled On Ice is much more golden than Bare Study, while Cuddle is a bit yellower and more of a true white gold, which is the same reason why Benefit’s Tattle Tale is not quite a dupe either. Benefit Sippin’ ‘n Dippin’ is nothing like it.
  • Dangerous Cuvee is most similar to Benefit Strut is a darker, more pigmented version–it has the same bluish cast; on the other hand, Benefit Skinny Jeans seems close at first glance, but it’s much more of a pewter shade with a taupe rather than a blue cast.
  • Vintage Selection is slightly cooler than Benefit RSVP.
  • I Get No Kick is virtually the same as Make Up For Ever #23 and Urban Decay Midnight Cowboy.
  • Calm Mode is nearly identical to Feelin’ Good.
  • Gel is less pink, more bronze compared to Beigeland, while Quiet, Please looks more bronze than pink when compared to Beigeland.
  • Luxure looks the same as Resort Life when worn (on my lips), but the latter is beiger in its color base–which is still rather sheer on lips; and the same goes for Sin-tillation.

Unfortunately, I do not own Rubenesque to compare to Let Me Pop nor Shimpagne to compare against Chez Chez Lame. My deepest apologies!

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Monday, December 20th, 2010

MAC Stylishly Yours: Overall Review & Recommendations

OVERALL, Stylishly Yours knocks it out of the park in terms of top quality, highly pigmented products–but it’s just a matter of whether or not bold colors are your thing. It is definitely a contrast to Cham-Pale, even in the finishes, as these finishes are mostly creamy.

All four of the Cream Colour Bases work well on cheeks (as blushers) or on lips (as a base, stain, or alone), and since they’re so pigmented, they also stain a little, which also helps them wear well. A little goes a long way, though, so I anticipate a few practice runs to perfect blush application of these–even just a dab may be more than enough on paler skin. The good news is that both lighter and darker skin tones can wear these and achieve a sheer, glowy look or a rich, intense one.

The lipsticks coordinate with the Cream Colour Bases, which is always nice when it is all laid out, but in reality, you could easily just get one product rather than both orange products (Virgin Isle and Neon Orange). The pigments also coordinate, but since the Cream Colour Bases are not eye safe, then they are less redundant. I found the texture and finishes of the pigments to be really gorgeous–pearly sheen over high frosts.

I think the two beauty powders are too pale for most people to get a lot of use out of them; I like them more than the Special Reserve Highlighters from Cham-Pale, but I just seem them looking a little pale, powdery, or ashy on medium to dark skin tones. When I first saw them, I initially thought they would be similar to the Barbie beauty powders from long ago, but texturally, they’re different, and color-wise, I think so, too. Similarly, Style Curve is another sheered out, less-than-potent purple lipstick; with such a bold collection with completely unapologetic colors and pigmentation levels, I don’t know why they didn’t make this a purple with gusto.

I will review New Hue separately and the review is forthcoming, but having worn it twice, on my blacker lashes with no primer, the color is difficult to distinguish. I anticipate that if you have naturally dark lashes, you will definitely need a primer to get more zing from the mascara. Mine also seemed a little dry, even though it is brand new, and Zoomlash can clump if you are not careful.

Product Photos, Swatches, Reviews

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Monday, December 20th, 2010

MAC Cham-Pale:  Overall Review & Recommendations

OVERALL, Cham-Pale stays true to its name–pale, light, and shimmering.  If you prefer matte, satin, or more pearly finishes to your makeup, I don’t think Cham-Pale will be the right collection for you.  On the other hand, if you love shimmer, shine, and glitter, it may be just perfect.  From the glittery, glimmering, high-shine Lipgelees to the sheered out, frosted paint pots, this collection is all about finishes that catch light.This also appears to be a collection that is better worn with products you own and not exclusively products from within the launch itself–you may find it is shimmer overload if you don’t mix and match!

In general, the product quality is good, though a few products were disappointing.  The paint pots are on the sheerer side and weren’t easy to layer for greater intensity, while Very Important Platinum was a gloppy, thick polish that was difficult to work with.  Caviar Dreams Eyeshadow Quad has two permanent shades and a repromote, but also two lustre shades, both of which suffer from fall out issues.

Product Photos, Swatches, Reviews

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Sunday, December 19th, 2010

MAC Stylishly Yours: Video Overview

First impressions/initial review of Stylishly Yours!  Like Cham-Pale, this video was shot right after I finished photographing the products, but the swatches you see in the video are the first swatches I’ve done/seen of the collection.

MAC Stylishly Yours Collection is a limited edition launch (official information and photos here) that is set to launch in-stores on December 26th in North America, January 2011 for international MAC locations. The approximate launch date for online is December 24th.

Sunday, December 19th, 2010

MAC Cream Colour Bases
MAC Cream Colour Bases: Madly Magenta, Movie Star Red, Tickle Me Pink, Virgin Isle

MAC Stylishly Yours: Cream Colour Bases

MAC Cream Colour Bases ($16.50 for 0.12 oz.) are multi-purpose cream-based colors. Stylishly Yours includes two permanent (but PRO) shades: Madly Magenta (vivid pinkish purple) and Virgin Isle (vivid bright coral); and two limited edition shades: Movie Star Red (medium toned blue-red) and Tickle Me Pink (poppy creamy bright pink).

THESE ARE NOT SAFE FOR USE ON THE EYES. Each of these came with a safety insert, and I’m going to retype it in full, because it’s a good reference for other Cream Colour Base shades, too.  (I italicized the four shades from this launch.)

The following shades are not for use in the eye area: Bamboo, Cooled Pink, Devilish Orange, Fabulush, Flaming Fuchsia, Flighty, Fuchsia Perfect, Full Fuchsia, Improper Copper, Madly Magenta, Movie Star Red, Orange Alarm, Pink Shock, Plumed Violet, Premeditated, Reel Red, Rich Coral, Rich Spice, Soft Rose, Tickle Me Pink, Vintage Rose, and Virgin Isle.

The following shades are not for use in the lip area: Brown, Dusk, Fawntastic, Greensmoke, Mid-tone Sepia, Pink, Plumed Violet, Slick, Vintage Rose, and White.

  • Madly Magenta is a cool-toned fuchsia purple with a glossy sheen and nearly opaque color coverage.  This is a permanent shade at PRO stores.  It is similar to Love Forever and Dolce & Gabbana’s Violet.
  • Movie Star Red is a medium-dark pinky-red with opaque color coverage.  This is a limited edition shade.  It is a darker version of Gesina.
  • Tickle Me Pink is a pale pink with opaque color.  It’s a little milky, but it’s not too pale, though it is a rather light pink (and I don’t love it on me personally).  This is a limited edition shade.  It is a cooler, pinker version of Unlimited.  It’s a warmer, pinker version of Viva Glam Gaga and Snob.
  • Virgin Isle is a softened orange with a hint of coral, and it has opaque color coverage.  This is a permanent shade at PRO stores.  It is a lighter version of Vegas Volt.

The good news is that all of these are lip safe, because they all make for lovely lip colors as well as blushers.  Even though they are not safe for the eyes, I will address general Cream Colour Base wear on the eyes:  they will crease if worn alone, but if worn over a good eyeshadow primer or set with powder eyeshadows, they hold up quite well.  CCBs have an emollient texture that’s more gel-like than cream-like.  All four of these are insanely pigmented; you will have no trouble getting good pay off whether you use it as a blusher (go easy!) or as a lip color.

For blush application, I liked the 130 or the 188 for blush.  Just one push of the brush against the product yields plenty of product, so tread softly when applying any of these four as a blusher.  You can always go back for more, but you should not need much!  I like to use a stippling brush to pick up the color then lightly stipple on the apple of the cheek once and move a centimeter or so outwards and stipple again–then blend with small, firm circles.  I like to use my foundation brush (which still has some foundation on it, as I use liquid) to buff gently around the edges of the blush for a finished look.

For lips, I prefer to take a clean metal spatula (MAC recently launched one) to take out some product and then pat on with my finger or you could use a lip brush for more precision.  These shades were surprisingly emollient and comfortable to wear; they didn’t feel dry or tight at all, and they will stain if left on for longer than a few minutes!  You can also pat a little on and then finish with clear gloss or balm for more of a stained lip look.

P.S. — In the full face photo, on eyes, I wore Chilled on Ice as a base, Retrospeck and Caviar Dreams on top with Dark Diversion to line (upper lash line) and I Get No Kick (lower lash line), and then New Hue on lashes.  Cheeks and lips are indicated below the photo (it is the CCB worn both on cheeks and lips).

MAC Stylishly Yours Collection is a limited edition launch (official information and photos here) that is set to launch in-stores on December 26th in North America, January 2011 for international MAC locations. The approximate launch date for online is December 24th.

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

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: They work well whether you wear them as a cream blush or on the lips, so if you see yourself using them in those capacities, I definitely think they are worth checking out.

AVAILABILITY: MAC Cosmetics on December 26th (U.S. stores), January 2011 (International)

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