Monday, May 13th, 2013

MAC Golden Elixir Strobe Liquid
MAC Golden Elixir Strobe Liquid

MAC Golden Elixir Strobe Liquid ($31.00 for 1.7 fl. oz.) is described as a “golden shimmer.” It’s a warm-toned, bronze and gold-shimmered tan brown. I don’t know of any specific dupes, as I’m not as familiar with the liquid illuminator category, so I haven’t reviewed many products previously. NARS Maldives is somewhat similar, but it is more pigmented and in stick-form, but NARS does have a liquid illuminator range, so my guess would be that this would be somewhat similar to Laguna. The thing with illuminators like this, though, is that they are very subtle once applied so while Tom Ford Fire Lust doesn’t look similar when swatched, when applied, they seemed to both offer the same effect.

The formula is described as a thin liquid that “produces a soft, radiant light on the skin … by providing a natural-looking glow.” It’s supposed to spread smoothly and absorb quickly. MAC has Strobe Liquid (the original) available year-round, while this is a bronzy take on the formula. This type of product can be applied in many ways (and as with any beauty product, apply however you wish! the possibilities are endless!), but the common ways are mixed with moisturizer, foundation, and patted along the high planes of the face. The consistency is thin, almost water-like, and it seemed sheerer and thinner than even original Strobe Liquid (but it’s been a long time since I’ve used it, so I might be remembering incorrectly).

Golden Elixir seemed to add a smidgen of warmth to my skin while giving it a radiant finish, which some might find too dewy that it looks oily, and I think on camera, it can look too reflective, but in person, it’s quite lovely and natural-looking. A light dusting of setting powder will bring it down and make it photo-ready, though. I didn’t have any trouble with it interfering with the wear of my foundation when I wore it mixed with it (I used Guerlain’s Lingerie de Peau as my base). When I wore it as a spot highlighter, it lasted six hours well and then seemed to slide around a bit.

The Glossover

LE
product

Golden Elixir

A-
Golden Elixir seemed to add a smidgen of warmth to my skin while giving it a radiant finish, which some might find too dewy that it looks oily, and I think on camera, it can look too reflective, but in person, it's quite lovely and natural-looking.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Dupes
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See more photos & swatches!

MAC Golden Elixir Strobe Liquid
MAC Golden Elixir Strobe Liquid

MAC Golden Elixir Strobe Liquid
MAC Golden Elixir Strobe Liquid

MAC Golden Elixir Strobe Liquid
MAC Golden Elixir Strobe Liquid

MAC Golden Elixir Strobe Liquid
MAC Golden Elixir Strobe Liquid

Product & Review FAQ

Is it limited edition?

Yes.

Any dupes?

I'm not as familiar with the liquid illuminator category, so I haven't reviewed many products previously. NARS Maldives is somewhat similar, but it is more pigmented and in stick-form, but NARS does have a liquid illuminator range, so my guess would be that this would be somewhat similar to Laguna. The thing with illuminators like this, though, is that they are very subtle once applied so while Tom Ford Fire Lust doesn't look similar when swatched, when applied, they seemed to both offer the same effect.

What makeup are you wearing?

On eyes: Giorgio Armani #3 Eyes to Kill Palette, Tarina Tarantino Spark of Envy. On cheeks: Edward Bess Secret Affair. On lips: Chanel Pygmalion.

Discussion and debate are highly encouraged, and we expect community members to participate respectfully. When asking a question, please check the FAQ section (above) for information about purchasing, price, dupes, and the like. If you have general feedback or need technical support, please contact us.

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55 thoughts on “MAC Golden Elixir Strobe Liquid Review, Photos, Swatches

  1. I love the look you’re wearing! It’s beautiful!!

  2. Interesting! But I’m quite oily so I first have to see if this won’t make me look even more greasy, looks great on you though :)

    • collier

      Me too. I’ve only recently discovered the whole highlighters/shimmer powder thing (largely due to Temptalia!), and I’m finding powder types usually work better for me. Most of the cream or liquid ones end up looking too intense, and too shiny/oily on me after not very long.

    • Marquina

      You could put it on your legs too!

  3. What lip color are you wearing? It’s so pretty and suits you well!

  4. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Melissa Melissa

    How does this compare, in shade and consistency, to Sun Rush Luster Drops? That full face picture of you is absolutely STUNNING btw!

  5. Jules

    What lipstick are you wearing? It’s gorgeous!

  6. Loving that ETK palette on your eyes!

    I’ve never tried strobe liquid. Strobe cream was not a favourite product, but perhaps the liquid is less greasy. Pretty!

  7. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Dee Dee

    I LOVE the idea of these types of highlighters/illuminators. But I find that after a couple hours, my face creates it’s own glow :) Might be ok for the middle of winter when my cheeks get a little too dry.

  8. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Anamelia Anna

    Christine, how do you take care of your hair? It’s AMAAAZING!

    • It’s probably just that way because I don’t style it very often with heat/tools (I also don’t dye my hair)! The past few weeks, I’ve used primarily Head & Shoulders for shampoo/conditioner, and once a week or every week and a half, I use Aussie’s 3-Minute Miracle deep conditioner instead of regular conditioner!

  9. Squee! Excited for this one :) I love the original Strobe Liquid – it’s one of those products I use all the time… constantly and forever. I have a TON of liquid illuminators but I always reach for Strobe Liquid by default cause I know it wears well and looks good on everyone. Products like this are great for mineral makeup or powder foundation wearers who don’t want to look so “dry” (as often powders will do). This with Studio Fix powder by MAC and you’re set! Super simple and really nice looking :)

    Off the soap box. Wee! :P LOL

  10. Very pretty! I have very dry, dehydrated skin, so this might be great for me!

  11. You look so beautiful! All of those products look ideal on you. Now I want them all :)

  12. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of kate Kate

    Product looks lovely on you! Do you think it would work on NW20?

  13. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Mallory Mallory

    You always look beautiful in your reviews but this picture in particular was like “Bam!” You look stunning!

    Great review as always!

  14. Just a bit too “glowy” for my liking. Especially in summer, I often get glowy enough all on my own!

  15. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Naomi Naomi

    Wow you look stunning :-)

  16. What are you wearing on your lower lash line?

  17. Anna

    Christine, thank you for your reviews- they are so helpfull!
    To be honest I still spend too much money on make up, but at least since I read your reviews it doesn’t happens to me to be disappoined with product that I bought just because it looked nice ..
    We already have Temperature Rising collection in Israel, and when I tried Golden Elixir Strobe fluid I had to buy it because it’s really amazing product! I’m nw20 and this doesn’t look too brown or orange, but just gives the skin beautiful glow. It’s really thin and as you said water-like. However I have combination skin and on the nose it did look a little bit too shiny/ oily, but with powder it’s OK.

    • Thank you! :)

      I’m happy to hear it’s working well on your NW20 skin! I had to powder a bit for a few other photos, because it is a little much on camera, lol!

  18. Kellyn

    Your hair looks beautiful in the pic :)

  19. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Chelle daheep

    I noticed that illuminator tones do actually affect my make-up overall. I’m neutral/yellow (BECCA Noisette/ MUFE HD 123/UD 5.0) & if I wear MAC Strobe or BECCA Opal mixed with my foundation, it give my face a noticeable pink cast in comparison to my chest & neck. When using them for spot highlighting (cheekbones, bridge of the nose, brow bones, & Cupid’s bow) the color doesn’t seem to matter. I do notice that BECCA Moonstone & MAC Whisper of Gilt flatter my skin a touch better than the aforementioned & I don’t run into a problem with my face not matching the rest of me when I use them.

  20. [email protected]

    MSF in soft and gentle or this ?

  21. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Adriana Chanterais

    Christine, you are the most wonderful kind of beautiful: the kind that makes other people feel warm and fuzzy to look at. It’s not a remote, intimidating, trying-to-impress beauty. Yours is really joyful and accessible. I think it’s because you’re clearly not wrestling with any ego issues around how you look–I love that you cheerfully test green lipstick with as much panache as a red one! It’s such a lovely quality in a person, and it’s ace to be in your company.

    I’ll stop being creepy now, I swear.

    • Aww, thank you Chanterais :) (That is such a pretty name!)

      And you could never be creepy! It is always nice to hear that I’m coming off as accessible, because that’s definitely something I want to be! :)

  22. This photo of yours is really eye-catching, Christine! But, we all know you look beautiful with and without make-up. :) I’ve been dying to read this review, I wanted to know your thoughts on this particular product before I add it to my list. I’m really glad it turned out well. Whew!

  23. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Romina romina

    you should try Becca shimmering skin perfector in moonstone or in opal. Becca highlighters are amazing

  24. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Vincent Vincent

    Is there any chance we can see what this looks like in a video?

  25. Monica!

    This reminds me of the Huile Prodigeuse Or, by Nuxe, which by the way smells A-M-A-Z-I-N-G.
    Looking pretty Christine!

  26. You look absolutely lovely, Christine! Love your earrings, also.

  27. I soo wish I could get the hang of these types of illuminizers, but I feel like my skin is too oily naturally to wear them. Either that or I’m just so paranoid of shine that I blot it all away. It would be great on legs and decolletage, though!

  28. Gauher

    Christine,is this only used for cheeks ? not for the whole face ?

  29. silvi

    Hey :) Is this similar to mac lustre drops in sunrush? I have the drops, so Im debating if I should get the strobe cream or not

  30. Mandy

    You look so pretty! I wonder if this product is similar to MAC’s lustre drops in Sun Rush? Because I already own that…

  31. beck

    Did you notice a scent with yours? Mine has no scent. I love the Strobe Cream scent I was hoping this would have it too, I know that is silly but I just lovehow it smells.Haha

  32. zey

    Hi, can you compare this to MAC’s lustre drops? I am currently searching a face liquid highlighter for a dewy look, but nothing with bit shimmer particles. And I have a medium complexion, a shade darker than yours, if it helps, can you guide me if MAc’s lustre drops in Sun Rush will be better for my complexion or this exilir? Any help will be appreciated :)

    And one more thing, should someone with a medium, wheatish complexion with yellow undertones go for a goldeny highlighter or will they be able to pull of something like MAC’s lustre drops in Pink Rebel as well? :S

    Thanks for any assistance!

    • Lustre Drops are thicker and more shimmery, so you’d use it as more of a spot application or mixed in with moisturizer/foundation.

      You can definitely wear either with warm undertones!

  33. Nyla

    Could I mix this with my body moisturizer to get glistening legs?