Tuesday, December 4th, 2012

MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder
MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder

MAC Making Pretty has a Mystery–Powder That Is!

MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder ($65.00 for 0.56 oz.) is a sheer, pressed powder. Each year, MAC launches it with their “couture” collection (typically at the end of the year), and this is one of three shades. Light Medium is likely a good bet for NC/NW20. It has a mostly neutral undertone, and when sheered out, matches my forearm pretty well (which is around NC20).  It also is available in Medium Plus and Dark Secret.

It can work as a finishing or setting powder. It has a lightweight, finely-milled texture that’s very soft and silky-smooth. Now, one aspect that must be mentioned is that you actually get a refill with your purchase (each pan is 0.28 oz.). To compare, MAC’s Select Sheer/Pressed Powder is $24.00/0.42 oz.  I’ve used this many times in the past, and it helps to set or mattify makeup.  What’s nice about the finely-milled powder is that it doesn’t look powdery on the skin, and it’s impossible to overdo.

This collection is all about packaging, but I think it’s a let-down.  Over the years, the Mystery Powder compacts have gotten lighter and lighter, and this year’s feels the lightest so far.  It’s in the same style as this year’s holiday palettes, but instead of the pastel cushion, it has faux shagreen.  It’s just the metallic edging is all plastic. It doesn’t feel like a $65 compact without some heft.

See more photos & swatches!

MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder
MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder

MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder
MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder

MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder
MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder

MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder
MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder

MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder
MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder

MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder
MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder

MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder
MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder

Product & Review FAQ

Where can I purchase it? How much is it?

MAC, $65.

Is it limited edition?


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25 thoughts on “MAC Light Medium Sheer Mystery Powder Review, Photos, Swatches

  1. Eh…the packaging certainly is pretty but no amount of pretty packaging can get me that excited for what is essentially a basic sheer, pressed finishing powder. Especially for $65 :/

  2. I wish I could get something from this collection, because the packaging is stunning. But I doubt anything is going to be worth the exorbitant price.

  3. Veronica

    I was fine with the product until I saw the price tag…$65?! Wow. I mean, I guess there’s the refill, but that still comes out to $116/oz. I use Too Faced Invisible powder, which at $27.00 and 0.32oz comes out to $84/oz. I mean, it’s a great product, but I admit the price surprises me.

  4. Jaune

    I use the MAC Blot Powder to keep my face matte throughout the day. Does this have a similar effect?

  5. blueraccoon

    For one thing, the powder’s a bit too dark for me – I’d need a fair to light, or just light, not light medium. If the compact were metal, maybe I could see it being worth $65? Maybe? But for plastic and faux shagreen, there’s no way it’s worth that much. (I will admit I use the Guerlain Meteorites pressed compact, which is also plastic and not really “luxe”, but the product inside is worth it IMO.)

  6. $65…that’s one heck of a mystery…can’t do it. Even if I had all the money in the world.

  7. t_zwiggy

    There is no way such a basic product and imo tacky and cheap looking packaging is worth $65.

  8. Carly

    I think they call it “Mystery Powder” because nobody knows where the color goes!

  9. ridiculous price for something so tacky looking

  10. Emily

    I am really not a fan of the packaging for this collection. It looks cheaply made. The original types of compacts this collection takes inspiration from wouldn’t have been plastic-y and they wouldn’t have looked cheap. Big miss from MAC.

  11. Jessica

    Do you remember the Stylistics compact from MAC? Now that had some heft to it. Too bad you can’t buy refills for it because I would still be using mine.

  12. Laura

    I’ve really gotta say I hate the packaging. It just looks cheap and nasty. I’m not feeling it at all. And for those ridiculous prices I will definitely be giving this collection a miss.

  13. Chantal

    I think I’m more resistant to sticker shock than most people. I bought the sheer mystery powder when it came in a Hello Kitty compact with Swarovski crystals, and that was $95!

    I think the trick with couture collections is to make the aesthetic aspirational; the packaging has to have a magic to it that makes it special every time you use it (I feel this with some Guerlain products, for example). I think this packaging would have worked so much better with a lower priced collection; it’s cute, which will appeal to many, but it is NOT luxe. I would love to see a retro motif couture collection, but it will need to have an heirloom quality. Women used to reuse their compacts, powder sifters, etc.; they weren’t disposable. They need to be timeless, weighty, beautiful, enduring. That is something worth making, and worth paying for.

    • Well, at least you could tell yourself it had Swarovski crystals (which, while marked up a bit when glued to anything and sold, at least adds some value), LOL! I don’t think I bought the Mystery Powder from that one — $95 was too steep for me just to review! I do remember buying the glosses, though!

      I remember the couture collection feeling like MAC’s way of saying, “Yeah, we give you high-end, high quality makeup and charge you a normal price for it… because we don’t have fancy packaging. So, we’ll show you what it’s like when MAC does both!”

  14. yingying

    is this coming with the powder puff?

  15. Tracy

    How does this light medium shade compare to the MAC mineralize skinfinish natural in light medium (that is now discontinued sadly)?

  16. Stacey

    Bought this in all three shades of powder. And I just bought them yesterday. For some reason, their order was cancelled but this MAC free standing store received them anyway. So bought all three colors and the two lipstick colors. I dont think the compact is cheap quality….light but not cheap….I had cheaper versions. Would not have bought it if the container was made in China. I own the Prada powder compact….discontinued, and that pink compact cost more with less amount. So happy that I finally got 3N and (2) Runaway Red….for I waited so long before lusting for them. Checked the lipsticks and they were in pristine condition. Despite what alot of people have experienced, so far, I have been able to purchase all the MAC products since reading Christine’s blog. Yes, I did have to go a bit of my way to get stuff from this collection and the Strength lipsticks, but I didnt buy them when they first came out.
    If you really want the product, you just have to follow Temptalia’s blog and literally fly to get them when it is posted available. The secret is reading Christine’s blog and timing the purchase.