Wednesday, May 12th, 2010

MAC To the Beach Collection
MAC Marine Life High-Light Powder

MAC To the Beach Collection — Marine Life High-Light Powder Review, Photos, Swatches

MAC To the Beach is much anticipated, but I think the Marine Life High-Light Powder is easily the item most coveted.  With its raised seahorse pattern and metallic look, I’m not at all surprised that it sparked a lot of interest.  As many of you already know, the metallic finish is just an overspray.  There are two distinct colors that remain — an orange-coral and a light baby pink.  The overlay is a metallic bronze, but a few swipes or sweeps and it’s gone.

Oddly enough, I really don’t feel the overspray did very much to the color, which is really a good thing.  It made the color a little more orange-y and obviously imparted a more shimmery finish.  Without the overspray, it’s more of a coral-pink with a smidgen of shimmer.  It’s decently pigmented though not overwhelmingly so.  It’s surprisingly pigmented, however, for something called a highlight.

It’s not like Instant Chic.  It’s not like Hipness.  It’s really not.  Instant Chic is lighter, subtler, and has a peachiness to it that neither Hipness nor Marine Life have.  Hipness is noticeably pinker and less intense than Marine Life.

I like it.  If you even think you might like this, I would snatch it up right away–and I mean the day it goes online or in-store for sale.  It will sell out.  And I’m also not talking selling out in a matter of days but hours.

See more photos & swatches!

MAC To the Beach Collection
MAC Marine Life High-Light Powder

MAC To the Beach Collection
MAC Marine Life High-Light Powder

MAC To the Beach Collection
MAC Marine Life High-Light Powder

MAC To the Beach Collection
MAC Marine Life High-Light Powder

MAC To the Beach Collection
MAC Marine Life High-Light Powder

MAC To the Beach Collection
Swirled (with overspray); top half; bottom half

MAC To the Beach Collection
MAC Marine Life High-Light Powder

MAC To the Beach Collection
Bye-bye overspray!

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210 thoughts on “MAC To the Beach Collection — Marine Life High-Light Powder Review, Photos, Swatches

  1. GretalovesMAC

    AAHHH!!! Can’t wait!!!! I will be up at 4 am to buy my stuff!!!

  2. meghan

    Wow I wouldn’t really use this as a highlight with all that pigmentation! I still plan on buying though! Not as pretty without the over spray, sad :( haha Do you know if the tote bag will be available online?

  3. Darrien

    This is really pretty but it sucks that as soon as you use it the top layers goes away! I think this may be one of the products I buy two for show, the other for use. :)

  4. Nadine

    That is super pretty! Is to the beach coming on thursday?

  5. Kathie

    Don’t need it. Pretty though but no need for it. Thanks Christine!

  6. Valene

    With my pale skin, this will definitely be used as a blush, not a highlight. But I think it’s very pretty. I figured I’d ONLY like it because of the design, how cute is that seahorse right? So I was planning on skipping it. But thanks to these swatches, I really think I’ll enjoy the actual product as well, so I’m going to try my best to grab one of these asap.

  7. Christine

    I lovethis powder! I already ordered it from our German MAC Website. :-)

  8. lauraaaaaaaa

    thats a gorg color

  9. ohh i want this soo badly..

  10. Donna

    sooooo pretty!!!! i am more convinced that i gotta have it. though i think it will be more suitable as a blush 😀 mil gracias for the swatch !!

  11. Rawrzellers

    Yuck, I thought it was going to be like Dame Edna but I guess not. Oh well I think I’m just going to get the bronzer.

  12. Dawn

    It looks beautiful, but I couldn’t bear to ruin the look of it, so for that reason I won’t waste my money buying it. I can’t afford to buy two.

    As for selling out, it did indeed sell out online in the UK within hours, so you need to act fast if you want to buy this

  13. HC

    LOL after the overspray is gone, IT LOOKS SCARY!!

  14. Katie

    Oh dear, I’m so in love! I think I may buy two because it’s so stunning and beautiful! I’m pretty psyched about this collection, but I’m anticipating In the Groove even more! I can’t wait for the MSF’s!

  15. I LOVE this powder and I’ve been lemming after it since I saw pictures, but then I compared these swatches to your swatches of Ripe Peach Blush Ombre from Spring Forecast and they look EXACTLY the same. This one is just a little bit more sparkly. I guess if someone missed Ripe Peach they might want to grab this one up quickly, but otherwise I think I’m skipping. Sucks, because its so pretty =(

  16. I love this, it’s so pretty. I actually got two of them because I couldn’t bear ruining the overspray. :) At least it’s nowhere near as expensive as Chantecaille! :)

  17. the most beautiful powder in the worldddddddd!

  18. Oh and it’s already sold out on the UK Mac website! :O

  19. Wendy

    It looks so pretty! But I’d definitely use it as blush lol.
    But it kind of looks a tad too orange for my liking… 😐

  20. rissy

    Christine, would you use this more as a blush since it’s so pigmented? I have medium skin tone.

  21. Rachael


    I have had this around a week and think its lovely but your right Christine it is very pigmented for a highlighter, tbh im using it as a blusher more then anything! The gold leaves a very fine shimmer although my gold is also gone now!

  22. I have been anticipating this collection like no other!!! I have serious yellow undertones so the Summer is my time to literally shine…like bling, bling POW lol!!! I bronze it up and I love coral, pinkish shimmer powders :-)…thanks for the fabulous swatches per usual!!!

  23. milly

    I recieved this item couple of days ago…&…i’m in love!!!! haha x

  24. Melissa

    It’s sick, I know, I know, but I might have to get two so I can keep one unspoiled and beautiful forever.

  25. Do you think this is kind of similar to Hipness Blush?
    I want this but do I really need both, which one do you recommend Christine?

  26. Very cute. The seahorse got me.

  27. glitter princess

    hi christine,

    do u think this would suit someone with nc40 skintone? x

  28. Tina

    Oh no! That gorgeous gold is gone!

  29. SUZI


  30. Jas

    This is soo gorgeous and better then expected! But i wanted to no how similar this colour is to hipness since i wanted both at first but now im not sure….so between this and hipness which is the must have? TIA and thanks for the advanced sneak peack and swatch!!

  31. Hay Mich

    That powder is so pretty! Do you think it would look good on fair skin?

  32. Crystal

    Its mine!

  33. Viridiana

    Awww it looks so sad without the over spray

  34. This is soooo pretty! I can’t wait ’till this collection launches! 😀

  35. This collection came out last week in Italy and Europe and I really have to say I don’t like this highlighter :( it’s way too orange-y!
    I love the packaging, though, but I decided not to buy it in the end…

    • Rachael

      I didnt find any orangeyness to this at all and ive been using it as a blush for a week on very pale skin

  36. starr

    in others peoples pics the top half was pink and the bottom smaller half was coral. was that a default on theirs? or are some marine lifes like that?

  37. baby in a corner

    i just don’t really see what’d you do with this! yes its pretty but the coral orange colour would be hard to wear for paler or even medium skintones! maybe a collectors item!

  38. Daliah

    i’m probably the only person that isn’t interested in this lol. it’s gorgeous but it’ll probably just end up sitting in my vanity.

    • Jessie

      I feel the same :) its so gorgeous, I couldn’t bare using it- and then it would bug me if it just sat around :(

  39. Aww it looks so sad with the overspray! :( haha. I think this might work well as a blush…I might pick it up if my country ever gets the collection (they’re so slow here!)

  40. Sass

    I want it! I’ll get two for sure!

  41. This is the product I wanted most from the collection so I got two. I think it is absolutely beautiful unswatched and untouched but I am so disappointed that it is just an overspray. I think it’s prettier with the gold.

  42. Laura

    aww i wish the gold would last, at least just on the seahorse it looks so beautiful!

  43. Connie

    I did a prepaid order of this line and have a funny feeling I will be getting more than what I did get. Anyway, first purchase was the Marine Life. Gorgeous!

  44. Patty

    Hey Christine! I love how quickly you have these swatches up, you are so good!
    I just wanted to ask if this product is similar to some of the Mineralize Blush Duos that were released recently, especially the Sun&Moon one? Thanks!

  45. felicia

    Hey Christine!
    I’m nw 45, do you think this powder would work for me?

  46. Aoife

    Hmm it looks a bit like Coralista to me which on my Irish skin is definitely not a highlight. I may have to pass on this… :-(

  47. Christa

    Is there any shimmer in the product besides the overspray??

  48. SB_sweetie

    Hmmm. I’m glad you posted this. I originally thought this was a “must-have” for me b/c it’s so beautiful in the compact. But now, looking at the swatch, I’m not sure what I’d actually DO with this. Certainly not a “high-light” in the true sense of the word. More of a blush. Plus, the compact looks so sad once the metallic has worn off! I’ll be at a launch party next Tuesday, so I’ll figure it out by then! Thanks for swatching this!

  49. Christa

    Sorry forgot to ask as well…any dupes colour wise to this. Is Instant Chic similar in colour…something else? Thanks! (I’m trying very hard to resist ;-))

  50. rowan

    that is the most artistic powder compact i’ve ever seen! it’s a shame it’ll go away though

  51. Carrie

    So lovely. I wouldn’t want to touch that overspray, though. I think I’d use this powder very sparingly.

  52. Mirna

    At least the seahorse is still there! No overspray is no biggy. That’s why I am purchasing 3!

  53. Chi


  54. sharon

    “bye bye overspray” hahahahah make me laugh sooo much hahahahha

    thats a shame.. it looked sooo pretty.

  55. Fernanda Harmony

    Ohhhh this is not fair!
    Should be nice forever!

  56. Amy

    When I scrolled down to the last picture, it’s like looking at a dead seahorse. It’s really funny though! Haha!! Btw now I’m thinking of buying two since that sounds like what others are doing….

  57. Christina

    Thank you so much for this Christine. I’ve been wanting this since you first told us about the collection but I wasn’t sure how it looked.
    I’ll be away for a work internship in Disney World and I won’t have a car so I will have to order off line. This has been tremendously helpful.
    You’re the best!

    • No prob, Christina :) Enjoy your internship at Disney!!

      • Christina

        Thank you! I definitely will!
        I’ll be away for 7 months, I’m sure I’ll make it to a MAC while I’m there. If not, i’ll be fine, your site will be my guide for my online MAC purchases. Lol.

    • Amy

      Have fun in WDW! I worked at Outdoor Foods in the Magic Kingdom in ’97. Sniffle, sniffle….

  58. lily

    if all of you are getting 2 or 3 i have no choice but to atleast get 1 of these 😉

  59. lulee

    christine… you are amazing. it literally blows my mind how you got all these reviews up in such a short amount of time. maybe you have house elves or something working for you like in harry potter, hmmmmm

  60. Alexis

    I LOVE Seahorses – so you can imagine how excited I am to get this. Even if I don’t use it daily this summer – I’ll have a pretty seahorse to look at, even after the overspray fades….

  61. Nadia

    hmmm, i dont seem to be liking this collection! Oh well, get to give my wallet a break :)

  62. Celeste

    do you think this could be a blusher for someone with porcelain skin?

  63. Yaaaaaaaak looks horrible when the overspray goes


    can it be used as a blush?

  65. It always bugs me when the top pretty shimmer part rubs off. I’ve bought a few shadows where this has happened (I didn’t know at the time it was supposed to come off) and the colour is no longer as I dreamed it to be :(

    • It only bothers me when it doesn’t seem obvious (like this seemed pretty obvious to me, lol, but maybe I’m just experienced now!), and when the product underneath is sooo different (which it’s not, in this case).

  66. Brittany

    I hate oversprays!
    but the colors are still gorgeous so i’ll get it

  67. Dominique

    So pretty! Love the color and the design, but since the design is way too gorgeous i dont think i will ever be able to use it!

  68. Emily

    Does this look at all like Nars Orgasm to you?

  69. macpriness

    i am piking this up the day it comes out!!! after school though…

  70. Cecilia

    Oh.. I thought that the gold on the seahorse and seaweed parts stay that way as you use it up. Thanks for the heads up. Now I am not sure if I want it. Bummer.. :\

  71. Noelle

    oh. My Gawd. I need this! Its even better than I thought!

  72. Noelle

    By the way, when does go on-line?

  73. Margot

    This will be the only item I’ll be picking up from what I’ve seen so far at least !!
    It will make a gorgeous blush I think, more than a highlighter !

  74. Ashley

    Christine, does that mean this powder will be like Lancome Temptingly Bronze Bamboo Bronzer? Which sadly, mine faded so easily…

  75. this is absolutely gorgeous! sad to see the golden seahorse gone but the beautiful colors stay :)

  76. Kristen

    If you were to wear this all over your face, would it give a nice glow? or would it be too heavy?
    BTW love all the sneak peeks/reviews!!

  77. aksaiyo

    Hey! Awesome review! Thanks a lot, now I just have to wait till it gets to Asia. I’m so worried I might miss it because they have such inconsistent launch times here. :(
    SO I was wondering why your marine life has a different top-bottom color than the other reviews I’ve seen or in the promo pics? Like the lighter color is at the bottom? (Don’t get me wrong, I like it much better your way)

    • Hi Aksaiyo,

      I really have no idea, and all I can say is this is how mine looks — it was in regular retail packaging, so I don’t think it’s a sample, but perhaps there was some mix-up in the manufacturing process. Again, can’t really say!

      • aksaiyo

        Lol okay, I’ll just hope the ones they get here will be like yours!

        • I bought two from Mac UK and they’re both like yours Christine, in fact all the pictures I’ve seen on Specktra are (except for the promo pictures). Maybe they decided to change the colours around after the initial batch?

          • I think promo shots may have been taken many, many months before mass production begins, so maybe they’re product samples that later got changed?

  78. Audrey

    Christine, how do you think this compares to Ripe Peach Blush Ombre? and Would this work for NC40? Thanks! :)

  79. ellie

    This is gorgeous but isn’t it too orange for a blush? I have nars orgasm do you think they’re similar?

  80. Johana

    Thanks Christine for these pictures. I already call in my order with double of this item to my mac seller. LOVE IT!!!

  81. That’s so pretty. I’m definitely adding that to my wishlist :)

  82. karen

    I MUST get this!!

  83. LNU

    Well, my wallet will be happy I actually don’t like this, but I’m disappointed cause I was looking forward to it.

  84. It’s pretty but not extraordinary or revolutionary as a product really . I doubt I’ll ever use it. So this is a no!

  85. amy

    The colour is gorgeous and I am going to grab this when I go to the preview event next week! I do like the look of the overspray on the product, though it does nothing on the skin.

  86. Natalie

    As I always ask this – is the shade similar to anything? :) I don’t care much for the design, but the shade is really pretty!!

  87. Kim L

    This might be one of those things that I can buy and never use just because it’s sooooo cute

  88. Freya

    Ok this is going to sound silly – what is Overspray?

  89. Toukie

    Soo pretty! It looks really pigmented, i might use it as a blush not sure…I’m NC30 so it depends on how it shows when i swatch it.

  90. JoElla

    That looks very, very close to Bobbi Brown’s Nectar shimmer brick. For those who wanted that, this could possibly be a great dupe for it. What do ya’ll think?

    • To be honest, I don’t think so — Nectar is kind of similar in color, but the *finish* is so, so different – BB’s is so shimmery and frosty in comparison!

      • JoElla

        Thanks Christine! I like Nectar, but sometimes it is a bit too much. I think nectar would work better for me after a wee bit of color on my face (kids, soccer, no matter how much SPF I use, I still get some) but this looks like it is what I wanted Nectar to be. But the Mac is oh so pretty.. I wouldn’t want to mess it up and just ooh and aahh at it.

  91. K7P*

    Awww… I liked the gold over spray. ;( Maybe I’ll have to skip this.

  92. Melanie T

    The overspray!!! LOL I’d probably work AROUND the seahorse~ It looks like someone butchered the poor thing to me! Haha~ Christine, here’s my ‘pretty’ long list of coral blushes to get~ Please advice me on what’s good to get compared to Marine life!
    1. Givenchy’s Blush Quartet in Euphoric Orange
    2. Lancome O My Rose!
    3. Coralista
    4. Nars Deep Throat
    5. Nars Torrid
    6. Bobbi Brown Cabo Coral
    7. Guerlain Rose Plein Vent Blush 4 Éclats Sculpting Blush

    I know this is a hard request!
    Thanks so much , Christine!

  93. Nadia

    I just can’t decide!! Originally, I was sure I wanted this. But it seems to be more of a blush than a highlight. Which makes me think…do I really need another coral/pink blush. I think if it wasn’t an overspray, it’s uniqueness would have tipped the scales in favour of me purchasing. But in light of that last sad (no overspray) photo…it’s making me go…hmmmm. I think it’ll come down to me going and actually trying it on my face!! Thanks for the swatches!

  94. aradhana

    i wasn’t going to get this, but after swatching at the counter i just had to….!

  95. Sophiie

    omg i loveee it!!! but i don’t think i would want to actually use it because its so pretty :/. i don’t wanna mess it upp lol

  96. maggie

    if im an nw20 should i get refined gold or golden bronzer?
    also should i get hipness blush and the Marine Life High-Light Powder? or are they simlar enough i could just get hipness blush and be okay?

    • Refined Golden – either one would work, but I think you may like Hipness more.

      • Laura

        After getting this today, I feel like Marine Life might be a little too dark for us NW 20. Is this just because of the overspray? I swatched at the store but I am considering returning this and just sticking with Hipness. Any Advice?

  97. Hi Christine, do you know how much this will retail for? And is the Canada launch day the same?

  98. Ada

    Thanks for the swatches, it’s gorgeous. The real product and the promo pics have the pink and coral reversed.
    Thanks also for the heads up that it’ll sell out quickly. I guess I might have to buy both this and hipness at the same time.

  99. derri

    hey christine, this is sooo pretty but i have a question. Im about the color of gabrielle union and i was wondering if i should buy this item? like would it show up and what could i use it for? blush? or? anyways thnx and love the site :-)