Thursday, July 25th, 2013

MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment
MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment

MAC Pressed Pigments ($21.00 for 0.10 oz.) are back for fall with a few limited edition shades, some repromotes, and then a few permanent additions to the existing shade range. The formula is described as “an intensely creamy highlighter offering extreme pearlescence and versatility of finish.” It can be applied dry for a sheerer, high-shine finish or applied on damp skin for a more dramatic, wet look.

The Pressed Pigments are incredibly pretty with their sparkling, light-reflecting ways. They’re seductive at a glance for anyone who gets excited about all things shimmering and glimmering. If you use an adhesive base and don’t mind some fall out, they’re an interesting product you may fall in love with (these seem to very much be a love it or hate it kind of product). Applied dry, the fall out is never-ending and horrendous. In the past when I’ve tested, my eyes have been irritated throughout the day when I’ve worn these without some sort of extra base/adhesive product to minimize the fall out.

That being said, I wore Vanilla Diamond (inner lid), Summer Honey (middle of lid), Pink Pepper (outer lid), and Damson (outer crease) yesterday. There was fall out during application, which is as expected, and is the reason I would apply these first, then foundation, so you can really clean up underneath the eyes. I applied all four shades damp with MAC’s 249 brush to the lid, and after eight hours, there was noticeable fall out, but the sparkle used in the those four shades was much finer than previous shades in the range (though there has always been some variance), so it didn’t look like big bits of glitter (that can sometimes look like dirt, when it’s not catching the light). My eye didn’t feel all that irritated either, which was a very, very happy surprise, so all in all, I would definitely say there was less fall out than previous shades I’ve tried. So yes, I think these are improved–to a degree–with the fineness of the shimmer/sparkle used as well as the texture. These all felt creamy and slightly wet, but if you nick at them, they dislodge like a powder product. The biggest improvement was that, generally, you didn’t need to crush up the product as much to get it to smooth out on the skin.

If you’re not into fussy eyeshadows, adhesive bases, and the like, I would continue to skip these. If you already own an adhesive base like Fyrinnae Pixie Epoxy, Too Faced Glitter Glue, etc., and you love yourself some glittery fun, you may want to consider trying a shade or two. I’ll be testing these a bit more over the next few days (the other four shades, specifically, as well as trying a few over an adhesive base). They just don’t work well on their own due to major fall out. There’s definitely a part of me that loves these. I swatch them and go, “ooh, ahh!” and then I wear them, and I’m always less impressed.

Black Grape is described as a “deep aubergine with multi-pearl.” It’s a medium-dark, silver-shimmered purple with plummy-mauve undertones. The base is lightly warmed-up, while the shimmer is cooler-toned, which gives it an overall cooler color. Applied dry, it’s semi-sheer, and applied damp, it is mostly opaque. The consistency isn’t chunky, but this is not the finest shimmer of the new shades. theBalm Lavish Latoya is less shimmery. Milani Purr-fect Purple is less shimmery, slightly lighter. MAC Grand Galaxy is cooler-toned. bareMinerals Encore is similar in color but not as sparkly. See comparison swatches. (This shade is permanent.)

Damson is described as a “deep brown with gold pearl.” It has a plummy-brown base color with a muted, golden bronze shimmer/pearl that gives it a warmer, golden bronze coloring overall. Applied dry, it was semi-sheer, and applied damp, it was semi-opaque. Blended out, it looks more and more plum and less and less bronze. MAC Smokeluxe #3 is darker but very similar. Urban Decay Nevermind is similar to the golden bronze coloring but doesn’t have a plum tone to it at all. MAC Universal Appeal when applied sheer actually looks similar, as it is a mix of brown and plum, but applied wet it is much more plum. See comparison swatches. (This shade is limited edition.)

Lime Ice is described as a “seafoam green.” It’s a pale, lightly yellowed green with a metallic finish. Applied dry, it was very sheer, and applied damp, it was semi-sheer. The consistency of this one was chunkier, more like past Pressed Pigments, so I would expect this to be more prone to fall out. It doesn’t smooth out as nicely and should be “crushed” with an applicator (whether fingers or brush or something else). Chanel Delicatesse #1 is darker, less metallic. MAC Fresh & Mint #1 is darker. MAC Lucky in Love is less warm-toned, darker. MAC Zestful is warmer. Lancome Fashion Forward is less sparkly. Chanel Promesse #4 is less shimmery. bareMinerals Sensational is less sparkly. See comparison swatches. (This shade is limited edition.)

Moth is described as a “mauve with silver pearl.” It’s a soft, muted pink-mauve with a frosted, metallic finish. The consistency is slightly chunky/gritty, and it is quite sheer applied dry and then semi-sheer applied damp. MAC Tendersmoke is much darker, as is MAC Circa Plum. See comparison swatches. (This shade is permanent.)

Pink Pepper is described as a “deep coral with gold pearl.” It’s a warm-toned, coral-orange with a gold sparkle and metallic finish. This was one of the more pigmented shades in the bunch; still semi-sheer applied dry, but mostly opaque applied damp. MAC Caribbean is darker, more orange. L’Oreal Cherie Merie is darker, more orange, less sparkly. See comparison swatches. (This shade is limited edition.)

Rock Candy is described as a “mid-tone fuchsia.” It’s a light-medium pink with a very frosted, glittery finish. This was the chunkiest shade out of the new shades that I tried. It seemed to have faint yellow undertones. It applied semi-sheer dry and then more opaque damp, but it does really need to be buffed, pressed, and worked into skin to get a smoother look. MAC Pinkluxe #2 is similar, not as bright. MAC Supersweet #2 is cooler-toned in the base color. MAC Cheryl Chic is less sparkly, a bit lighter. MAC Love Power is lighter, cream. MAC Rose Light is more muted. See comparison swatches. (This shade is permanent.)

Summer Honey is described as a “pastel coral.” More like a soft, peachy-beige with a frosted, metallic finish. It is very sheer applied dry and then semi-sheer applied damp. This one had finer shimmer/sparkle. MAC Pastelluxe #2 is more golden and metallic. Disney Midnight Hour #2 is darker, less sparkly. Urban Decay Sellout is a smidgen lighter. NARS Delphes #1 is less sparkly. MAC Light Touch is more beige, lighter. Chanel Raffinement #2 is less sparkly. See comparison swatches. (This shade is limited edition.)

Vanilla Diamond is described as a “warm yellow beige.” It’s a pale, champagne with subtle warm undertones and a frosted, metallic sheen. It was sheer applied dry, and then semi-sheer applied damp. It has a finer sparkle/shimmer compared to the formula overall. MAC Smokeluxe #1 is smoother. Disney Sea Shells is more opaque. MAC Dazzlelight is less sparkly. Bobbi Brown Bone is similar. See comparison swatches. (This shade is limited edition.)

* Note: Midnight is another new (and permanent) shade that is listed as “coming soon” online, so I haven’t been able to purchase it. I will review it when I am able to do so.

The Glossover

P
product

Black Grape

C

Product

7/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

6/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Dupes
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LE
product

Damson

C

Product

7/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

7.5/10

Longevity

6.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Dupes
LE
product

Lime Ice

D-

Product

6/10

Pigmentation

6.5/10

Texture

7/10

Longevity

5/10

Application

3/5

Results
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Dupes
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See more photos & swatches!

MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment
MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment

MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment
MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment

MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment
MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment

MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment
MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment

MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment
MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment

MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment
MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment (Damp)

MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment
MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment (Damp, Angled)

MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment
MAC Black Grape Pressed Pigment (Dry/Damp)

MAC Damson Pressed Pigment
MAC Damson Pressed Pigment

MAC Damson Pressed Pigment
MAC Damson Pressed Pigment

MAC Damson Pressed Pigment
MAC Damson Pressed Pigment

MAC Damson Pressed Pigment
MAC Damson Pressed Pigment

MAC Damson Pressed Pigment
MAC Damson Pressed Pigment

MAC Damson Pressed Pigment
MAC Damson Pressed Pigment (Damp)

MAC Damson Pressed Pigment
MAC Damson Pressed Pigment (Damp, Angled)

MAC Damson Pressed Pigment
MAC Damson Pressed Pigment (Dry/Damp)

MAC Damson Pressed Pigment
Vanilla Diamond (inner lid), Summer Honey (middle of lid), Pink Pepper (outer lid), and Damson (outer crease)

MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment
MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment

MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment
MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment

MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment
MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment

MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment
MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment

MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment
MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment

MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment
MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment (Damp)

MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment
MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment (Damp, Angled)

MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment
MAC Lime Ice Pressed Pigment (Dry/Damp)

MAC Moth Pressed Pigment
MAC Moth Pressed Pigment

MAC Moth Pressed Pigment
MAC Moth Pressed Pigment

MAC Moth Pressed Pigment
MAC Moth Pressed Pigment

MAC Moth Pressed Pigment
MAC Moth Pressed Pigment

MAC Moth Pressed Pigment
MAC Moth Pressed Pigment

MAC Moth Pressed Pigment
MAC Moth Pressed Pigment (Damp)

MAC Moth Pressed Pigment
MAC Moth Pressed Pigment (Damp, Angled)

MAC Moth Pressed Pigment
MAC Moth Pressed Pigment (Dry/Damp)

MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment
MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment

MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment
MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment

MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment
MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment

MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment
MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment

MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment
MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment

MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment
MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment (Damp)

MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment
MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment (Damp, Angled)

MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment
MAC Pink Pepper Pressed Pigment (Dry/Damp)

MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment
MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment

MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment
MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment

MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment
MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment

MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment
MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment

MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment
MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment

MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment
MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment (Damp)

MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment
MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment (Damp, Angled)

MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment
MAC Rock Candy Pressed Pigment (Dry/Damp)

MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment
MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment

MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment
MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment

MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment
MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment

MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment
MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment

MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment
MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment

MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment
MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment (Damp)

MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment
MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment (Damp, Angled)

MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment
MAC Summer Honey Pressed Pigment (Dry/Damp)

MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment
MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment

MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment
MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment

MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment
MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment

MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment
MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment

MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment
MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment

MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment
MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment (Damp)

MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment
MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment (Damp, Angled)

MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment
MAC Vanilla Diamond Pressed Pigment (Dry/Damp)

The Dupe List: Black Grape

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The Dupe List: Damson

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The Dupe List: Lime Ice

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40 thoughts on “MAC Pressed Pigments (Fall 2013) Reviews, Photos, Swatches

  1. A couple of these shades are really cute (Lime Ice, Moth, Pink Pepper). But considering how much eye shadow I already own, I can’t be bothered fussing with these if they aren’t that great.

    • With you there. Got two from the last collection just because I thought they would add some extra sparkle to my cheeks (when I’m feeling disco-ball-ish) but wouldn’t and haven’t used them as an eyeshadow. Too much fallout.

  2. Not all swatches look equally good, but I do love the super shimmery finish!

  3. Banafshe Sharifian

    I just ordered three of these: Pink pepper, Black grape, and Damson. They are set to arrive on Tuesday so we shall see. :) Which base do you like to use with these Christine? I was thinking of Lit cosmetics base? What do you think? Also, there is a Pro only shade I believe called midnight which is a beautiful dark blue. I keep checking the site and it says “coming soon.” I hate when MAC does that! :) Thanks again for the wonderful reviews!

  4. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Elyssa Ceebee

    I still don’t understand pressed pigments. They look just like regular glittery eyeshadow once applied, but they require an extra product to make them stick and they have a ton of fallout. What am I missing here? Why would anyone use these?

    • Carrie

      This is pretty much why I skip them. I’ll use loose pigments on occasion and don’t mind the fuss, but if this doesn’t make them easier to apply or wear than what is the point?

  5. Erin Nichole

    I really liked these but too bad the reviews aren’t great. I own one Mac shadow and I’m not too impressed.

  6. OMG super shimmery.. !! No for me..

  7. I love the swatches of these, but I just can’t deal with Mac’s pressed pigments. I understand that they’re full of glitter, but I just hate all the fallout. Not even just when you’re applying it. I find glitter all over my face during the day as well and that just ruins it for me. If they made the glitter bits a tad smaller I’d go for them though. Beautiful colors.

  8. Oh, these have turned out to be so pretty!! If I decided to buy any I’d definitely play around with them over different colours to see what sort of effect they’d have

  9. Love the look of Damson in the pan and swatched on your hand but with the quality being so low (as with most of their pressed pigments) this will be an easy “pass”. I know you said it has plum undertones, Christine but I would imagine that they’re hardly discernible when it’s actually on the eyes so it seems to me that there are probably a lot of awfully close dupes for this shade which have much better wear, application and pigmentation.

    • It actually turned more plum than brown on me – I’m wearing it in the outer crease in this post!

      • After looking at your swatches, I was expecting more brown, but noted how plummy this turned out on your eye. This is what I was expecting from a shadow called Damson. I quite like it.

        • Allison

          Ditto. I was intrigued by Damson when I saw it in the pan. I was ‘wowed’ when I saw it swatched…absolutely gorgeous.

  10. I love wearing anything Mac. My favorites are Rock Candy, Summer Honey and Black Grape. They look beautiful. Great pics! Thanks for the review.

  11. These are indeed pretty but I think I’ll stick with UD’s Moondust shadows for my glitter fix as they’re more pigmented when wet and a little cheaper.

    • Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Marilyn Marilyn

      Exactly what I was thinking. Even the Maybelline Tattoos seem to be a better product, and they can be had for like $5 if you wait for a sale.

  12. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Denise S. Denise S.

    I like these and I own Too faced glitter shadow primer but they’ll probably irritate my eyes. Glitter shadows and eyeliners just seem to make me feel like I have something in my eyes all day, too bad cause I like glitter.

  13. Omg, Damson is full on gorgeous. Too bad there is so much fallout with these, they are absolutely beautiful! I love the shimmer and shine these bring and that look that you did with the colors is one of my favorites that I’ve seen in a long time! I might just have to try one and deal with all of the fallout just because they all are so pretty.

  14. beck

    black grape looks cool, but I wont be purchasing any of these
    A hard seller at my MAC store was trying to get me to buy these last year, the product was kinda sucky in person for me any way. Skipppp

  15. Gemma W

    oooh..The SWATCHES are beautifull.but the rating for them are quite low…
    I won’t buy them..I just bought so many TOM FORD’s quad..aahahaha

  16. Christine, would you say that the MAC Glitter is better in terms of application/pigment?

  17. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Chelsea Chelsea

    I love Black Grape & Damson, I don’t see the point of all the neutral/pale colours in this range, they are hardly distinguishable on the eye itself, though I do love the finish personally.

  18. Loved pink pepper… I want them all :)

  19. faerieevenstar

    Those are beautiful. Such a shame about the fall-out. I may have to buy some Pixie Epoxy from Fyrinnae or that Lit one… just so I can buy the pretties.

  20. The colors are just so gorgeous, but I don’t have the time for formulas that are not user-friendly. :(

  21. I find Damson and Moth to be really interesting even though I’m not typically into super shimmery shades. I may have to grab Moth at a minimum. It looks like a really lovely inner corner/inner third of eye brightener. Damson looks like it has a a nice amount of depth.

  22. rachel

    Always love your thorough reviews! Thanks!

  23. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Mariah Mariah

    The colorful ones are BEAUTIFUL! I think it’d be worth a little work to wear these! I wish there were more regular shadows (like veluxe pearl?) like that one with the deep plum with gold!

  24. I love Pink Pepper and Rock Candy, but I don’t think I have time to deal with them if they are fussy! Such pretty colors, though.

  25. zainab

    I like the swatches of some of these (Damson is beautiful, and I like the wet look of Summer Honey), but I can’t imagine a time when I’d wear these and when I hear ‘MAC’ and ‘fallout’ in the same sentence I just think of the Lustre eyeshadows that promise way more than they deliver.

  26. wow these are a bit disappointing aren’t they. look at that chunkiness in the glitter. great for some night looks but the quality on some of these seems lacking.

  27. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Kim Kim

    Thank you! I’d really be interested if anyone has any tips on using the primers. I have Too Faced Glitter Glue and I use it for loose glitter, but mainly over eyeshadow and I use my finger to pat it on and pat the glitter on – not very precise. Also, it dries pretty quick. What is the right way to apply these tackier bases so these products stick better? Thanks!

  28. Tatiana

    I LOVE pressed pigments and find the best way to apply them is with your finger ! Can’t wait to get these!!!

  29. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Monica Monica

    I didn’t intend on buying any of these or even go look at them in person. I was preordering my Indulgence items due out 8/22 and my MUA suggested I give these a look. I fell in LOVE with pink pepper, damson and black grape. I can’t wait to pick these up tomorrow. I Swatched all colors and the three I purchased were the most pigmented with less fall out. I do want to say that Moth was a lighter version of Damson in my opinion. She stated works best on eye with NO product and apply with finger.