Thursday, October 28th, 2010

MAC Tartan Tale

MAC Tartan Tale Collection (Colour): Overall, Round-up, & Recommendations

OVERALL, Tartan Tale doesn’t do it for me.  The eyeshadows look really cool, and they have a lovely soft and smooth texture, but they just seem so muted when you apply them.  Glamora Castle and Semi-Precious were the best of the six, while the other shades felt more appropriate as soft, springy pastel kind of shades.

I don’t like the value of Dazzleglass Cremes, and this batch of five tends to run rather sheer and they start to all look like the next when worn on the lips, and there were too many that were similar to permanent or recently released shades–a few also looked just like Dazzleglass and lacked the “creme” part.   Sheer is great, but seeing it over and over within the same collection is redundant.

My favorites are all of the Pearlglide Eyeliners, though three of them are repromotes–all worth a peek if you don’t yet have them! It’s just such a rich, pigmented formula that glides on like butter and still wears long, I can never pass these up.  I also really enjoyed the pigments that came out with the launch, because I felt like they had depth and stood out amongst past and present pigment releases.  Both nail lacquers were stunning on, but the brushes on both were a bit thick, so I’m not sure if there was a manufacturing defect there or not.

Much of this launch felt decent to good but only some items were really great.  On the flip side, I didn’t feel like anything here was really lacking in quality to merit a skip.

Temptalia’s Recommendations

Must-haves: Pearlglide Eyeliners (pick your poison!), Style Clan Nail Lacquer, Pigments

Nice-to-haves: Sly as a Fox Nail Lacquer, Gone Romancin’ Dazzleglass Creme, Courting Lilac Lipstick, Glamora Castle Eyeshadow, Semi-Precious Eyeshadow

Skip:  Nothing is terrible, most things just lie in the middle

Skip if…

  • Skip MY HIGHLAND HONEY if you have UTTERLY GAME; they’re pretty similar–Utterly Game is a touch coral.
  • Skip LIGHTLY PRANCING if you have BARE NECESSITY; it doesn’t have as much gold shimmer, but it’s pretty close in color.
  • Skip SOFT DAZZLE if you have MOTH TO FLAME; they look incredibly similar when worn.
  • Skip RADIANT JEWELS if you have CREME ALLURE; it’s a touch darker but similar enough.
  • Skip DEEPEST WISH if you have KITTENISH or MEDIA; it’s just a blotchy version of both of those.
  • Skip SEMI-PRECIOUS if you have HEPCAT or PLUM DRESSING; they are all very close to each other.
  • Skip HER BLOOMING CHEEK if you have AZALEA; Azalea is PRO but incredibly close.

Don’t forget to Check your stash for…

LATER (repromote), SOFT DAZZLE (repromote), FULL FUCHSIA (permanent at PRO).

Recommendations by Skin Tone

Please note that this section is merely suggesting shades that would complement a particular skin tone better than other shades, but these lists are meant to be rather exhaustive of the entire collection; it’s not reflective of must-haves for your skin tone. When it comes to cooler/warmer skin tones, these are products that lean noticeably cool/warm and therefore complement the corresponding skin tone better (but it does not mean you can’t wear a warmer product if you’re cooler!).

Pearlglide Liners: I recommend all shades for all skin tones.  Seriously.

  • Best Picks for Lighter Skin Tones: My Highland Honey Blush, Style Clan Nail Lacquer, The Family Crest Pigment, Moonlight Night Pigment, Soft Dazzle Dazzleglass Creme, Gone Romancin’ Dazzleglass Creme, Courtly Lilac Lipstick, Deepest Wish Lipstick, The Faerie Glen Lipstick, Glamora Castle Eyeshadow, A Wish Come True Eyeshadow, Semi-Precious Eyeshadow
  • Best Picks for Medium Skin Tones: Sly as a Fox Nail Lacquer, Style Clan Nail Lacquer, The Family Crest Pigment, Later Pigment, Moonlight Night Pigment, Passing Fancy Dazzleglass Creme, Courtly Lilac Lipstick, Cut-a-Caper Lipstick, The Faerie Glen Lipstick, Glamora Castle Eyeshadow, Enviably Fun Eyeshadow, Semi-Precious Eyeshadow
  • Best Picks for Darker Skin Tones: Her Blooming Cheek Blush, My Highland Honey Blush, Style Clan Nail Lacquer, Later Pigment, Moonlight Night Pigment, Radiant Jewels Dazzleglass Creme, Deepest Wish Lipstick, Full Fuchsia Lipstick, Glamora Castle Eyeshadow, Semi-Precious Eyeshadow
  • Best Picks for Cooler Skin Tones: Sly as a Fox Nail Lacquer, The Family Crest Pigment, Later Pigment, Moonlight Night Pigment, Gone Romancin’ Dazzleglass Creme, Radiant Jewels Dazzleglass Creme, Courtly Lilac Lipstick, Deepest Wish Lipstick, The Faerie Glen Lipstick, Glamora Castle Eyeshadow, A Wish Come True Eyeshadow, Semi-Precious Eyeshadow
  • Best Picks for Warmer Skin Tones: Sly as a Fox Nail Lacquer, Style Clan Nail Lacquer, Moonlight Night Pigment, Passing Fancy Dazzleglass Creme, Soft Dazzle Dazzleglass Creme, Lightly Prancing Dazzleglass Creme, Cut-a-Caper Lipstick, Enviably Fun Eyeshadow, Follow Your Fantasy Eyeshadow, Golden Crown Eyeshadow

What are you loving? What are you looking forward to?

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41 thoughts on “MAC Tartan Tale Collection (Colour): Overall, Round-up, & Recommendations

  1. dana

    i ordered glamora castle two days ago…and I’m relieves to see the nice swatch of it. I may get a lipstick or two…I really am reluctant because of my giant VV splurge…

  2. Janet

    Super helpful, as usually! Thanks for everything, especially doing this during your midterm week!

  3. Angel

    Christine you are amazing<3 i take your word for everything haha. Definitely getting a few Pearlglides, they look so niceee.

  4. SiaM

    I really liked your swatch of Undercurrent Pearlglide eyeliner, love that greenish sheen with the intense color. Also got Style Clan, Courting Lilac,and the Reelers and Rockers palette, super helpful round up!

  5. joanne w

    Thanks so much for always doing this! You always have things done so quickly and thoroughly! And I just love how you’ve broken down the math for us.

  6. Shannon

    I picked up today Her Blooming Cheek Blush, Courting Lilac, Gone Romancin’, and Semi-Precious. I am returning Courting Lilac and Gone Romancin’ tomorrow. They were so sheer, it wasn’t a point in wearing them. I’m an NC50 by the way. I love HBC and S-P.

  7. Moeko


  8. Lauren

    I bought Glamora Castle on impulse last night. I have paired it with a Benefit’s Leggy on the inner corner of my eye. I then threw a little patina in my crease to soften the edges. I’ve had 3 compliments on my eyes today. It’s a cool colour that I definitely did not have in my collection, anywhere. I’m in love.

  9. Edelmc

    Thank you so so much for all your information on this collection! Normally there are 1 or 2 things that I want in a collection but this collection has gotten me very excited. I am going to get 2 maybe 3 of the pigments, black swan liner and 1 or 2 dazzleglasses. I know what you mean about the value in comparison to the lip glasses but I never get to the bottom of a gloss so I am not having to worry about how often I need to repurchase and I much prefer the dazzleglass packaging. Will you be able to do comparison swatches like you did for previous collections. It’s a great help to see the swatches side by side. Can’t wait for collection to launch in Europe next week.

  10. Chrissie

    I fell in love with Black Line pearlglide liner when it came out earlier this year so I’m definitely getting backups along with Black Swan PL. I’m surprised you didn’t put Her Blooming Cheek blush as a must have – I’m still debating that one since I am warmer toned and lighter than you Christine – I’m scared that it’ll make me look like a clown.

  11. fabiola

    I am a nc20 or 25, and i only got her blooming cheeks and two lipsticks: courting lilac and cut a caper. I agree with christine, semi precious looks like plum dressing.

  12. fabiola

    Hi christine, thanks for all your information with the collection, it really helped me out to make my choices, so i did not go crazy yesterday when i went to my mac store.

  13. Nayeli

    I’m loving her blooming lovely…. Would it look nice on my NC40 skin?

  14. Thanks Christine, this was a great post! As usual, I love how you sum everything up, it’s very useful when planning a haul.

    I’m glad to hear you like the pearlglides, I ordered Petrol Blue online last night.

  15. Hannah

    Thanks for tips Christine….. Your reviews are always so helpful and I’m sure we all appreciate how fast you get things up on the web, even during your mid terms, so I personally appreciate that :)

    I did buy one of the makeup brush sets, well I pre-ordered them. I actually ordered the one Christine reviewed here, and I was so worried that I wouldn’t like mine as well. So I went by my local MAC counter yesterday to pick up my brush set and purchased 4 other things from the Tartan Tale line (I got the black line and petrol blue pearlglide eyeliners, the Her Blooming cheek blush, my first bright pink blush and the Gone Romancin Dazzleglass creme). I am super happy and excited with the eye liners, blush and dazzleglass creme.

    However, I was not at all too happy with the brush set. I have the MAC 252 full size brush, and the travel 252SE was allot thicker and didn’t feel as smooth compared to the full sized. I don’t have the 219 full sized brush, which is why I got the set, but I expected the 219SE to look like the full size brush, which it didn’t. It was rounded and thicker, I wanted the point of the brush head to look like a pencil. So in the end I returned the brush set; I didn’t even open the bag it came with :( I exchanged the brushes for full size brushes. I got the full sized 219, 266 and 227 :) I paid a little bit more but I’m sure it’ll be worth it.

    My wonderful MUA at the MAC counter did inform me that the brush sets are man made and are not typically suppose to last as long as the full sized brushes. I was very surprised but extremely happy that she was honest with me. She also advised me to buy the MAC full sized brushes one at a time since they are quite expensive. So that’s my plan :)

    Oh, I wanted to also mention that my MAC 187SE had black bristles. I asked my MUA why the full sized one is white, but the SE one had hints of black. Even the display one was black. Weird huh. My sister bought the other face/eye brush set and she loves hers. She’s never owned MAC brushes so this is her starting point. Whereas my expectations are allot higher as I have a few brushes from MAC, which I love and adore :)

    Anyway, I just wanted to say that next time before I pre-order anything I’ll make sure to check out Christine’s opinion before I make a purchase :) :) Hope you all have a spooky Halloween :)

  16. Marie

    I agree with you Christine. I bought all the pearglides. They are like mini greasepaint sticks. All the pigments are incredible. I don’t really care for the shadows.

  17. Thanks for the reviews Christine! They were helpful like always. Honestly I had bigger expectation from these but at least now I know which one to choose. :)

  18. Melissa

    Have to agree with you about the collection. Wanted to save my $ for all those new paintpots coming out later; when I saw Tartan Tale in person it didn’t really do it for me. Bought Fairie Glen and Glamora Castle, really love the eyeshadow but still on the fence about the Glen. I think my MAC SA was a little let down by me because I nearly always haul the day of a new launch, but with limited funds it’s really been pared down to a “gotta have” basis.

  19. Luna

    Just wanted to say that we were told at update that the eyeshadows are meant to be sheer…kind of a bummer since they are so gorgeous in the pot. They have cornstarch in them which makes them have the soft texture.

  20. Thank you for saving me money- again! I was excited for this collection but I found out that I wouldn’t have nearly enough money to get what I wanted from your swatches actually made me feel a lot better. I don’t care for any of the color collection and I am not in love with the palettes but since I’m new to pigments I really want the pigment sets.

  21. theetrilobite

    I totally agree about the pigments. I might grab the black or blue pearlglide liner too.

  22. Jenny

    I got Her Blooming Cheek blush, and it is definitely HG status for me! I am lighter than NC15, olive-toned, with black hair and brown eyes. It is GORGEOUS! It gives me the perfect just-got-in-from-the-cold flush.

  23. Liv

    are you going to review the pigment sets?

  24. ano3000

    has anyone tried the pearlglide pencils on their waterline? I know it’s not recommended but was just wondering..
    p.s. thank you christine for taking your time to do these in depth reviews.

  25. Grace

    Hi Christine! I know you said to skip My Highland Honey if you have Utterly Game, but do you think you could post a comparison swatch? I really love Utterly Game, so I wouldn’t mind having a similar shade as a back-up of sorts, but I would love to see how they compare. Thanks!

  26. Kristine

    How long are collections usually available for? I’d like a couple of things from this collection (really want the pearlglide liners!), but I won’t have the budget for it for at least a couple weeks. Thanks!

  27. Tasmin

    This collection was launched here in Scotland yesterday. Love it (I’m Scottish/Asian). Christine I’m a Mac NC42 am I cool toned? Thanks

  28. aida

    I just got the Glamora Castle eyeshadow, it is true that the other colours are way too sheer and frosty on my skin, the dazzleglasses cremes were nothing out of the ordinary and the blushes were not my cup of tea. I want the pearlglide eyeliners but I am on a budget so I wanted to know if there are any pearlglide eyeliners that permanent (PRO or not)?

  29. Morgan

    I love Radiant Jewels! As soon as I saw it, I ran out and bought it before even looking at the rest of the collection. I saw your post where you swatched it next to Creme Allure, and they are EXACTLY the same. Did Creme Allure come out with a collection, or is it permanent? If its permenant I know I’ll have the option to repurchase, otherwise, I need to go buy a few more Radiant Jewels!

  30. Leticia

    Hello Christine! Thank you so much for your great reviews on this collection. Unfortunately, work was very complicated with a major event at the time you published your reviews and I was not able to check them out. When I was finally able to go to my usual MAC counter, I was told the collection was going to be officially released the following day (here in Mexico it came out around November 6 in most counters), but my fave MUA showed me everything at that moment and I was able to pick first hand. I made the mistake of buying the Dashing Lassies palette :(, but well, I’ll try to make the most of it! I am happy with the single eyeshadows I got (a wish come true, follow your fantasy and semi-precious) but agree with you that the stars of this collection are the pearlglides!! Love them!! Thanks again for everything you do – I learned my lesson and will ALWAYS read your posts before hitting the counter!

    • Thank you, Leticia! :) I’m sure you can rock Dashing Lassies!

      • Sadie

        Do you think the Dazzleglass Cremes are worth it? I’m very new to MAC, and I’ve had my eye on Lightly Prancing, but I’d rather not waste 18 bucks on a sheer gloss, when I could get another lipglass for less than that. What do you think? Thank you so much for your swatches, you’ve helped me so much! xo

        • If it’s a gloss you will use often, you might go with one with more product in it – if it’s something you won’t use all the time but really love the color of, then I could see it working :)