MAC Brunette, Blonde, Redhead Review
OVERALL, I had relatively high expectations for Brunette, Blonde, Redhead that weren’t really met. I admit that I should have gone in with no expectations, but I couldn’t help myself; it seemed like neutrals, classy shades perfect for everyday wear would abound so it seemed I’d be in love with it all. I was disappointed in both the eyeshadows and the lipsticks, but I did like the mineralize skinfinishes and a few of the lipglasses.
The eyeshadows, on the whole, just weren’t impressive in pigmentation or texture–even some of the colors that looked promising didn’t quite swatch the way I’d have liked. The lipsticks were all sheer formulas/textures, so they didn’t work well on my lips (compared to creamier formulas). For those with less pigmented lips, they may find these a nice reprieve! Red Devil is one of the standout products from the launch, because it’s a richly pigmented coral-red shimmery gloss that can be worn alone it’s so color-rich.
Flip eyeshadow is the best bet out of the nine shadows, because the shade doesn’t quite exist in the permanent range and it has good texture and color pay off. Henna is gorgeous, but easily duped by Sumptuous Olive; and Femme-fi is a great eyeshadow but I have it from Neo Sci Fi (so it’s still good, but not new, y’know?).
Of the mineralize skinfinishes, I liked Blonde the best for its light pink coloring it gave me and the shimmer level. Brunette makes me wary, because I feel it will end up being too dark on my skin. Of course, you can use a light hand with it, but Redhead is quite similar in the tone (perhaps more copper than bronze) and lighter so I can just use that instead!
Must-haves: Red Devil, Flip, Henna (if you don’t own Sumptuous Olive), Femme-fi,165
Nice-to-haves: Strawberry Blonde, Quick Tease, Henna, Blonde
Skip: Most of the lipsticks, Live & Dye, Peroxide, Knight, Top Knot
See a review breakdown of each product…
- All’s Fair looks like a berry-crimson shade, but when swatched, it’s a pale medium pink shade with a little bit of berry in it. On lips, it’s even lighter. It’s a lustre formula, which generally means it is going to be sheer rather than rich.
- B-Babe is a frosty medium pink with raspberry tones. It’s pretty, and I bet lots of people are going to love the shade. It’s more raspberry than Bombshell (which is quite pink on me), and it is sheerer than Bombshell. The finish/frost level of the two are comparable, though.
- Blow Dry looks like a bright coral-orange shade in the tube, but when swatched, it’s a muted coral-brown. As a lustre, it goes on quite sheer both swatched on skin and on lips (it pretty much looks like nothing on my lips). I had high hopes for this one!
- Chignon is a plummy purple shade with red shimmer and tnoes. Again, it is a sheer vampy color, which makes it more wearable as far as vamp colors go. It did show up better on my lips than many of the other BBR lipsticks, but the shade isn’t my fave, since I don’t wear vampy lips often.
- Marquise d‘ is a beigey peach shade with no real shimmer, mostly sheen. It has a lustre finish, and again, it is a pretty sheer shade. This came out with holiday sets in 2007, I believe.
- What A Do! is a frosty, bronzy-brown shade. It actually ends up being more nude and wearable on the lips, because the brown isn’t too pigmented when applied.
- Live and Dye is a light-medium pink with pink shimmer gloss. There’s nothing that stands out about this shade, other than it looks very wearable. On my lips, it did nothing for me; it was just way too sheer and looked more like shimmer and clear gloss.
- Peroxide is a sheer, ultra light pastel pink shade. I almost want to call it a frosty milky white shade with pink shimmer instead. Like Live & Dye, it was ridiculously sheer and didn’t look like anything except shimmer on my lips.
- Red Devil is a stand out shade amongst the six lipglasses, because it’s rich in pigment and added a nice coral-red color to my lips. It’s wearable on its own or paired with lipsticks. It’s richer than similar shades like Lychee Luxe in terms of the gloss pigmentation.
- Strawberry Blonde is a raspberry-pink with reddish tones. I really thought I’d love this gloss, because it looks so delicious in the tube! It’s not quite so pigmented when applied to my lips, but it still gives me a subtle color that can be worn alone or used to deepen some pink lipsticks I have. I don’t feel like I’ve seen this particular shade a lot either, which is a huge plus!
- Soft Wave is a frosty, multi-colored shimmer gloss with a brownish/bronze base. It reminds me way too much of Naked Frost from Chill collection. I know you can’t always be original, but I wasn’t expecting to see a dupe so soon.
- Quick Tease is a vampy berry shade. It’s not like Jampacked (from Cult of Cherry), which was incredibly dark and more purple. This is a more wearable vamp color. It’s almost not dark enough to be considered a vampy color, actually. It’s darker in the swatch than on the lips, so you may want to try it before you dismiss it as being too dark!
- Knight is a dark, silvery-gray shade; and you better believe that it’s similar to Knight Divine. The finish is different, which makes this a little smoother, but I don’t feel like it’s up the normal great texture of veluxe pearls, to be honest. It didn’t go on as pigmented as many other VPs do for me!
- Femme-fi is a beige-peach highlighter with sophisticated shimmer (read: not glittery). This was originally released with Neo Sci Fi in Summer 2008, so it isn’t an original shade. It is, however, a great highlighter, so I’m happy to have a back-up now.
- Henna is a gorgeous shade of antique gold, but it looks very much like Sumptuous Olive. Just think instead of calling it Sumptuous Olive, it’s Sumptuous Gold. The sheen and undertones are a little more gold than green–the difference is not so great that you need to own both.
- Deep Shade looks like a deep navy blue, and of course, immediately conjures images of Deep Truth and the ten other Deep Truth lookalikes from 2008. It is not Deep Truth, because it goes on much darker and less blue. In a sense, this is a poor imitation of Deep Truth. It does, however, resemble the coloring of Contrast in a way, though perhaps a touch bluer.
- Pincurl is a duochrome pink-white-silver kind of color. It has a little bit of shimmer, and the texture is not as smooth as I’d like. It reminds me of the feel and pay off of Club eyeshadow. It’s just not as smooth and pigmented as I’d like it to be. The color reminds me of a pinker, lighter Vex or a lighter Seedy Pearl.
- French Cuff is a bronzy-pink shade. I’m not sure where they got the description “ice pink” from. It looks a lot like Mythology; perhaps it has a little more pink to it. The texture feels like a lustre–the glitter/shimmer is chunky/gritty.
- 100 Strokes is a deep burgundy-brown shade. It looks so pretty in the pot–like a more jewel-toned version of Sketch–but on my hand, it looked pretty blah. It lost a lot of the burgundy tones and ended up mostly brown. Perhaps over a good base you can retain more of the burgundy.
- Flip is a yellowed gold-bronze color. I want to say it’s similar to Elite eyeshadow (from awhile ago), but it’s not nearly as dark or ultra-pigmented. If I had to pick any shadow that was a must-get, this would be it.
- Top Knot looks like a really deep, dark purple. In reality, it’s mostly black with very subtle purple nuances, which means they’re not easily seen by the eye. Feels like a chalky black with some purplish shimmer–I’m kind of over chalky black with [insert color] shimmer shades.
- Brunette is a bronzy-coppery shade which lends more to the bronze side than copper side. As far as I can tell, it’s really too dark for my skintone (NC25/30)–it’d probably turn out a little muddy/overly bronzy on me.
- Blonde is a pinky-raspberry shimmer gradient, and I like this one the most, actually. It does add even a little bit of pink color to my cheeks, despite being medium-toned. I used the 165 brush to apply it this morning, and I liked it quite a bit.
- Redhead is suitable for those looking for something with warmth, but nothing too bronze. If Brunette is too dark for you, definitely check out Redhead! All of the strips in the mineralize skinfinishes are wide enough to allow you to use them singularly if you really wanted to. I recommend the 165, because the tapered tip actually can pick up quite a bit of product.
- 165 brush is a small, tapered brush best used for placing color with precision or used for highlighting. It’s a very dense brush, and it picks up color so well. I definitely like using it to highlight cheekbones, which I’ve been doing with the 129 lately–now I will be applying highlighters using the 165!
- 214 brush looks like a stubby 239! It really does. I see myself using this brush for lower lash line application of eyeshadows or to smudge/smoke out colors on the lash line. Perhaps for a really defined crease you could use it to deposit color, too.
- 226 brush is a smaller 224. It has the same shape, but the brush head is smaller and it’s quite fluffy. I don’t find it overly dense, and it will be interesting trying to incorporate it into my routine, since I currently bypass crease brushes!