Monday, January 4th, 2010

Make sure you also read the follow-up to this post, which compares Kitschmas vs. Kitschmas.

Old vs. New MAC Pigment Jar Packaging: A Tale of Comparisons

The news may be old, but the feelings are still raw. MAC has changed up their packaging for their pigments, which are loose color (often multi-purpose). The MAC website, just today, updated and not reflects the new jar packaging.

This post is extremely image-heavy (22 images, 4mb), so please be patient if it takes awhile to load.  If you like this post, please feel free to link to it, but we would really appreciate if you did not hotlink the images!  Thank you!! :)

Here’s why some are upset:

  • New packaging (we often do not like change, period)
  • Sizing has decreased from typical 7.5g/0.26 oz. to 4.5g/0.15 oz.
  • Pricing is the same ($19.50 U.S.)

Because this post is designed to give you a very detailed insight into the differences between the sizing and packaging of both the old and the new…

Here is a summary for those find this post too long to read.

After dumping a new jar and an old jar, seeing it in real life, looking at the heighths, widths, density, etc., I suspect you’re losing around 1/2 teaspoon worth of pigment.  It may be more, it may be less, depending on the pigment in question.  (I estimate roughly 4 teaspoons of pigment per old jar, on average.)  You’re still getting plenty of pigment for your money–likely more than the majority of us will use up in a lifetime. Pigments often differ in texture and density; they’re not all made alike. Some are very chunky (e.g. Kitschmas) while others are very smooth (Vanilla). At the end of the day, I think you’re still getting much more than you think (and you’re not getting as little as you think).

See my detailed comparison with LOTS of photos…

Above is why I think you’re not losing very much.

On the left, we have Universal Mix, which is a new and limited edition pigment debuting this Thursday. On the right, we have Blonde’s Gold, which is an older pigment (no longer available). I chose Blonde’s Gold for comparisons for two reasons: 1) I know I’ve never used it, so it’s totally and utterly full; 2) it had similar texture – very fine, though it’s not 100% the same. Universal Mix has a very, very fine and smooth texture. It’s like silk almost. It almost feels wet when you smoosh it together, and it has a tendency to clump together (see the photos above — Universal Mix looks like lots of chunky bits), whereas Blonde’s Gold is looser and doesn’t clump up nearly as much.

The piles may look a little different, which is a result of their textures - I just dumped both out on separate sheets of wax paper. The Universal Mix pile is smaller in size, but it’s taller; Blonde’s Gold just kind of splat and so it’s wider, but much shorter (which is why I took heighth photos, too). I don’t have a scale to which to weigh, which is unfortunate, but hopefully pictures tell you the bigger story.

I then clean and refilled the new packaging with Blonde’s Gold, which fit snugly into the old packaging. Do you see what remains? It’s a very small amount — roughly half a teaspoon or less of pigment. I used to sell pigment samples (like four years ago), and I can’t even tell you exactly how many teaspoons are in a jar — usually round four, sometimes more or less, depending on the pigment’s texture. If I really wanted to, I could have really compacted the Blonde’s Gold pigment into the new packaging and probably could have fit the rest in, which brings me to my next point…

On the bottom left, you’ll see Universal Mix back in its new packaging. Do you see how much is overflowing? Do you see all the residue beside it? Pigments can be “fluffed” or they can be pressed down and compacted. When brand new, all of it fit neatly and nicely in the new packaging, but unpacked and you can’t fit it all back in the jar without pressing the pigment down to fill it up again.  I’ve had matte pigments that say they’re only 2.5g in weight, but they fill up the entire jar… but I’ve also had matte pigments that say they’re only 2.5g in weight and barely fill half of a jar.

Thoughts on New Packaging

Straight from MAC HQ, the new jars were designed to reflect the packaging of MAC’s entire line, particularly their nail lacquers and foundations. They hit it on the head with the new packaging. It’s slim, compact, and reminiscent of both the nail lacquers and foundations. The new packaging is slightly taller than the old packaging and the insert has a little plastic tab to make it easier to pull up (my big thumbs, however, did not find it easy to remove it). The new packaging uses a thinner plastic as well. The tops are similar, but obviously the newer jar top is taller, but the jar itself goes over halfway into the “top” (the black portion).

The labeling is also much different. The new packaging doesn’t list the weight on the jar itself, only on the box. The new packaging has the logo on the front, and then it has the name of the product and the location of MAC HQ. The bottom of the new packaging lists the same information as the back of the jar, plus the pigment’s name and the batch number (A99). The old packaging has much of the same information, but it doesn’t have some of the extra words like “Dist. By” and “Made in.” Again, the old packaging lists the weight of the product as well. The old packaging also has a label on the bottom with the pigment’s name and batch number.

Thoughts on Pricing

It’s very, very rare for a brand to reduce price. It’s usually not a good sign, actually. I wouldn’t have expected MAC to reduce the price. Seeing how much I’m still getting in terms of actual quantity and usage? I’m not too concerned about the price staying the same. Yes, you get a little less, but you really do get more than you need. I still think you’ll have plenty of product to press, though Universal Mix, because of its ultra fine texture, would likely still require a bit more pigment than some of the more frost-finish ones (e.g. Teal or Fuchsia).

But let’s not forget two points… MAC’s Richmetal pigments were 4.3g in the old jar packaging. I didn’t see much of an uproar then. But wait — those pigments still came full. 4.3g of those pigments still filled up the jar that also holds 7.5g of other pigments.  Second, this is not the first time (and few seemed to care then) MAC has changed packaging, given you less, and made you pay the same or more — Dazzleglass is a prime example. Dazzleglass was one of the first lip products rolled out in the larger-sized tube packaging, but it contains much less gloss — 0.06 oz. — compared to their traditional Lipglass, which is 0.17 oz. You lost 0.11 oz. AND you pay $4.50 more. It bothered me then, still bothers me now, but I just don’t remember nearly as much backlash as there has been over the pigments.

So…

While the OCD in me will miss the old packaging, I’m not going to stop purchasing pigments just because they’re in a newer jar. I’m, personally, going to get the same enjoyment out of them as I always have, because I’ve never, ever finished a jar. It’s not like I’m going to have to run out and buy a second jar because they’ve given me so much less. I’m still going to end up with a jar that looks practically full, even two years from now. Like all the other pigments I own. (The only pigments I have that are less than 90% full are either because I sampled out from them years ago or I’ve spilled it at some point.)

I’m not going to tell you to buy or not to buy, because it’s more about the value you see in pigments and your own money. I just wanted to tell you what I’m going to do, and I thought I would show you, as best I could, why the difference isn’t big enough to merit me getting upset.  If you’re upset, let MAC know, because I know they’re listening. :)

Sidenote: the best way to compare between the old and the new would be to take the same pigment and compare the new vs. the old that way.  It would also be helpful to have a scale handy, to weigh both and see where they came out.  I may or may not do this at some later point, but we will see.

What are your thoughts?

Look how much does fit into the jar – you probably could press it enough to get it all to fit.

Look how much is LEFT OUT of the jar when I put Blonde’s Gold back into the old packaging!  Does the jar look empty to you?  To get it all in, I had to press the pigment down to compact it.

Just to show you all the steps…

The fluff… the fluff… the fluff is on fi-yah!

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272 thoughts on “Old vs. New MAC Pigment Jar Packaging: A Tale of Comparisons

  1. anonymous

    oh thats pretty could you do a swatch please? is there anything else new?

  2. I do not like this new packaging at all . It is sad they are charging the same for less product . True I may never use all the pigment , but still I paid for it and I want what I pay for .

    • anonymous

      I agree they shouldn’t charge more for less.

    • lisa

      If the product is less then the price should be less too!

    • Bea

      I TOTALLY AGREE!! I paid for it and I want it! Not cool MAC not cool!!

      • rowan

        the price increase is ridiculous, i feel like boycotting mac =/ i always loved that pigments last forever…

        • Desiree

          WHO CARES?!

          It’s like crying over spilled milk! I’m never one for corporate greed but MAC has always been extremely practical when it comes to the prices of their products. Seriously, out of all of the high-end brands, MAC is by far the most economical!

          Christine makes a good point with her post: you still are getting WAY MORE than you’ll ever use!

          Stop being babies… ;)

          • Desiree

            AND, by the way, you never know what the MAC company was going through:

            On the consumer end it looks like MAC may be ‘price gouging’ but in reality they probably aren’t.

            Like I said above, MAC is super reasonable when it comes to product pricing. It brings me to the conclusion that MAC was most likely losing money and, instead of making a quality cut in foundations or eyeshadows or whatever, they reduced the size of their pigments.

            $19.50 for 4.5g, instead of 7.5g, is probably much more reflective of the value you are getting. They were just giving us extra before, without charging us for it.

            Thanks again, Christine. The hysterics over this are COMPLETELY unwarranted.

            • Desiree

              All of you guys saying that you will stop buying MAC pigments are not being completely honest. I think all of you will still run and buy a gorgeous color when you see it, regardless of the packaging or the amount.

              And, by the way, the new amount/packaging of the pigments is probably MORE REFLECTIVE of what we SHOULD HAVE been getting from them with the old 7.5g jar.

              Think about it: $19.50 for 7.5g is a STEAL! 4.5g for 19.50 is more in line with what other companies give for their pigments (ie. MUFE Star Powder. You get 0.09oz for $18-19. MAC pigment gave 0.26oz for 19.50! The new packaging gives you 0.15oz for $19.50. It’s more in line with MUFE but you STILL GET MORE!)

              All of the other ‘calculations’ stated in the comments are not being fair to MAC. Sure, they make hundreds of thousands/millions of dollars a year but we live in a capitalist system! Competition is important.

              I have 3 pigments from CCOs and my sister has 4 (we share). The ONLY color that gets even SPORADIC use is my 1 teaspoon portion of my sis’s Smoke Signal. I still have a ton! (She has a ton!)

              In sum, we MAC addicts/lovers/etc. should not bash MAC for a decision that does not even affect us in the slightest. You’ll still have a generous amount of pigment with 4.5g. You still get much more than from MUFE (which I feel is ridiculously overpriced…$30 for a concealer? Um, sis no…). If you don’t want to buy MAC, fine, but is it really fair to bash them when they were giving us much more than we needed for FREE?

              (Also $14.50 for an eyeshadow is still cheaper than pretty much all of the other high-end brands. With their excellent palettes, you can get that shadow for $11! Hello?! And their palettes are superior to MUFE, Stila, whatever. UD doesnt even do palettes for their $16 shadows…BOO!)

              <3

            • luckyyou

              im not agree … be4 they give us 7.5 g they should keep the same or they should not give 7.5g be4 if they do i think they should keep the same g .

        • Karen

          It’s not a price increase. Clearly the price will remain the same but the quantity will be less. And although I don’t agree with decreasing the quantity, the fact remains that you (and countless other “boycotters”) will be 1st in line @ your local MAC stores & counters purchasing them…..

          • I think, also, if you don’t like the way a brand does business, boycotting the brand is probably a more impactful move than merely refraining from purchasing pigments — particularly if say, you already own a lot of the permanent or older shades in old packaging, so you’re really only contemplating any new shades that come out, which aren’t many! I don’t know if MAC is going to see it reflected in their bottom line as they would if you said “No MAC!” period.

            • kat

              haha I also never understood the concept of boycotting a brand like MAC. Unless you really don’t want to buy it, then just don’t buy it. But it’s not really boycotting because, beleive me, MAC will not notice!

  3. Nice comparison! I think I’m going to miss the old packaging though, I really like it… Nice and sturdy, the new one looks so… breakable? =) And I like everything uniform, same shapes, very easy to stash that way…

    But still, I think I’ll keep buying them, just because I love the pigments so much… I do like the eyeshadows for everyday use, but pigments just give your look that little bit more.

    Anyways, I’ll keep buying!

    And BTW: thank you for the pictures, and for making such a mess, just to show it all to us! Must have been hard to see all your lovely pigment scattered around the jar! =)

    xoxo

    • The plastic is marginally thinner (from what I could tell and eyeball), but it’s a hard plastic and feels sturdy enough to me. My boyfriend couldn’t tell the difference between the two (he is, obviously, the least biased party). I was worried about these feeling and being cheap, but I don’t think they’re a big step down from the old packaging.

      Do I like the old better? Overall, probably. The new packaging is like a mini nail lacquer, which is kind of cute in its own way, lol.

      • Yeah, though I do kinda like the way the old one has a broader… base? I m a klutz, and I fear that Ill tip the smaller ones over more easily. =P But, as you say, Ill just have to wait and see for myself… Though I think Ill go get myself one last big jar of pigment, got a giftcard for christmas that I havent used yet, so that would be a good use for it ^^ Good excuse to go check out the warm cozy collection again too, Im kinda wishing I bought some more stuff from that one after seeing swatches over here so… Whiiii ^^

        Thank you for your amazing reviews!!

        • Letitia

          You know, I thought the same thing (about the tipping it over), but I have a NYX pigment shaped in this manner, and the smaller opening will not allow as much pigment to fall out, so maybe I’ll be able to save it!

          I don’t know, I just thought it was funny that someone else besides me was preparing for the “tip over”, lol.

          • When I first saw the pigment photos come out, I thought they might be cheap feeling like the NYX ones, too. They’re kind of similar, but these definitely have the more “high end” feel to them (plus they’re not squeezy, I remember NYX being squeezy!).

            • Jep… I will just have to wait and see/feel for myself but I’m still scared that, if I buy one of these smaller packaging pigments, I’ll tip it over much more easily…

              I had hoped that there would be sifters maybe, on top, because of the smaller opening, which will make it harder to dip your brush in… I kinda expected they would have these little sifterthingies on top of them, but I realized just now that there’s nothing like that in the pictures. That’s really a shame, would have been nice!

      • eryn

        Hi Christine- How will this new packaging fit in the tiers of my MAC train case? Will I be able to put it on a shelf other than the top and still close the case?

        I have the older ‘tackle box’ style.

        Much thanks and appreciation for your site.

    • Heather

      I agree, similar shapes make it easy to organize… So that would be my only complaint about the new packaging.

  4. Sixx

    I like the new packaging better- just wish you were still getting the same amount.

  5. baybee415

    noooooo!! i hope my freestanding stores have the full size available!!

  6. Leah

    It’s not really the amount (I can never finish pigment up anyway, regardless of the amount).

    What matters for me is the packaging and I think many would agree. After all, we’ve all admitted to buying something solely for the packaging before :P
    The old packaging is cute, screams “buy me” and looks nice with my other pigments on my nail rack. It’s like having an assortment of colors and hues.

    The new packaging screams “chunky, tipsy, tacky, and awkward.” I’m not loving it. I’m not even liking it. I think I’ve purchased my last pigment, Christine. *tears*

    D’know if the MAC Pro pigments are going through the same “embarrassment”? ;)

    • I like the new packaging. I don’t like anything cheap, but I don’t really feel that these are cheap like NYX pigments were (are?) packaged. These are hard plastic and kind of cute, actually :) After fiddling with it on my desk, I’d also say they aren’t tipsy, I can swirl and make ‘em like spinning tops in a sense, and it rights itself well. Since the base isn’t as wide as the old packaging, it’s not as solid as the old packaging, but it’s doesn’t fall over at a sigh, you know?

      I’d at least suggest checking them out in store to see and feel for yourself. :)

      All of MAC’s pigments are affected as far as I know, and it is a permanent change.

    • Brenda

      MAC PRO in Toronto is having the same packaging. The artist told me they will have the old ones around until they are sold out, at least until June, then MAC is “culling” what’s left of the old packaging.

  7. I don’t like it. The new packaging doesn’t fit into my train case drawers at all.

  8. Jennifer

    Well maybe if people dislike the change enough they might lower the price of it.

    I only have the bluebrown pigment in the old packaging, and I rarely use it. I guess if you are a big pigment person this would be a disaster, but for me it’s eh.

    However I don’t know why they wouldn’t reduce the price two bucks or something …

  9. Charlotte

    so bottom line: MAC decided to charge more for the pigments. To make more profit. Period.

    i’m just so mad!

    • Wilcoa

      I agree, there was no way MAC had to raise prices and reduce amounts to remain competitive. They have a HUGE following and more people coming to it every day. It’s a just a money grab in my opinion which seems to be happening with a few of their products lately (i.e. dazzleglasses which I find empty so quickly it’s barely worth the money). I’ve definitely have been converting over to other brands for certain products because of some of these (with regards to all products, not just piggies) changes.

    • You perfectly summed up what I think from the beginning.

      They simply did what we call here a “made up price increase” (when the price doesn’t change but the quantity dicrease, it’s supposedly to be more acceptable than increasing the product price) and I suspect the redesign to be the main reason for the change far above their will to have a design unity.

    • kristina

      That may not be necessarily true. Inflation, cost of materials etc, could have been a very likely reason for this change. Products within many industries have increased pricing in the last three years, and expect to see much more of this.

      Raw materials simply cost more now and companies have to find some way to compensate, would people have been more pleased with the old package and pay twice as much?

      • Jo

        This, 100%. The prices can’t remain the same forever, so instead of upping the price, they’ve redesigned the packaging so you’re getting less but paying the same price.

        Either way consumers would feel stung, but it had to happen.

      • kat

        Couldn’t have said it better myself!

        Prices can’t just float on, they have to change.

        I think it was a very smart product to increase the price on. I never really use up my pigments anyway so I won’t notice the difference and I wouldn’t miss it. It’s still cheaper than other comparable products on the market… who cares! Maybe this increase will help keep the general prices of the other products down. I’d so much rather pay more for pigments than the eyeshadows (well, because I buy so many more of those haha!)

      • Courtney

        Exactly x100! Its been happening in the grocery store for the past year, because the economy sucks and inflation just keeps going. For all of you that buy Dreyers/Edys ice cream, did you stop buying it when they shrank the package but charged the same amount? I bet you didnt!

      • Rio

        **Applauds*** one of the few comments that make sense!!!! at the end of the day, MAC is a company and they will make decisions that will benefit them. I’m tired of listening to the complaining, if you don’t want it, don’t buy it. I always thought the piggies were fairly priced and even with the change in packaging I still think its a good deal. This wont stop me from purchasing pigments or MAC products… The ones whining over such a little thing without realizing how companies must be run annoy me to no end…

    • Sylvie

      I agree! I’m slowly but surely turning my back on MAC

    • Rengirl

      That’s exactly what’s going on here. I actually saw this on the news recently – a lot of companies reducing product size but maintaining prices so they can keep their bottom line.

      Even though MAC has a huge following, I’m sure quite a few people are scaling back on their purchases and MAC is feeling the crunch. But still… 7.5g to 4.5g – that’s almost half!

    • jollie

      I agreed with you, MAC is just doing what some other companies(including food companies) are doing. They are repacking into smaller sizes, so they can save money as the same time that they keep their profits up. Who can blame them, on this economy. What I don’t like is that I am paying the same price for less product.

  10. stacy

    Thank you for posting this comparison. At first I was annoyed with the change, but now it does not seem so bad. I did, however, purchase four pigments before the packaging changed on macpro.

  11. cloudburst

    I dont care about the new packing either way, but it is dissapointing to be charged the same amount for less product. I would rather they upped the price of the original size. That being said I will still be buying pigments.

    • Vijaya

      Seconded. I really liked the old jars, and I think I’m going to head to the counter near me to get a few in the old jars. I don’t think I’ll be buying any pigments after this.

  12. Rachel

    Im personally glad that theyve decided to repackage them. I have always found the pigments to be overwhelming in size and quantity. Whenever you take the cap off..its just overflowing and falls all over the place. And no matter how much you use..they dont seem to go away! I dont care that the price is the same..I think it makes more sense. Just my opinion (and not the popular one!)

    • Jessie

      But you’re paying the same amount for less and do you think that the pigment in the smaller jars won’t overflow and fall all over the place either?

      Besides, if you like the colour why would you want it to go away? Some of my pigments I love so much and they were limited edition and I can’t get them anymore and I use them all the time. So it sucks to have less of something that is limited edition.

      • I’m clumsy in a lot of areas of my life, but I don’t think I’ve ever spilled a pigment… maybe once, and I think I lost a little bit, but not too much. I guess I’ve just never had many issues with pigments spilling or falling out of the jar in the years I’ve used them. So thanks for pointing out something I missed (since I don’t encounter it myself) :)

    • Rengirl

      If this debate has shed any light for me, it’s that the pigment “servings” are too big and not user friendly. I say they make them available in much smaller sizes that people can actually finish (that way I and others like me don’t have to go through ebay or something to get them this way).

  13. I wish the new pigments were more spill proof. :( I like pigments but I am terrified of using them because I am clumsy.

  14. ok, yes it does suck that were getting less for the same price but at the same time, i will never finish a pigment unless i drop it or something. also, i have the holiday gift set thing of 5 mini pigments and i dont even see myself finishing those and you know how small that packaging is. it was an unnecessary change but its their perogative and there are people who like pigments and will still purchase so mac is probably not worried. worse case scenario, the backlash will be so bad that they lose out and revert back to old packaging but how likely is that? i own one full-sized pigment (old packaging) and if its really a huge deal, ill grab whatever colors i just NEED to have from a CCO in the old packaging. for the time being stores will probably sell out of product they have in the old packaging so those who are really upset should go out and purchase now.

  15. stephanie

    not a problem. pigment lasts for ever and has so many uses its pays for itself :)

  16. Thank you for this post, Christine! :)

    Ill still be hunting for old XL jars. Cant pay as much for smaller amount. :(

  17. margot

    I never found the packaging of pigments incredibly practical so I only have two pigments. But I personally like the new packaging, and maybe with a more narrow opening, less pigment will go everywhere ? That is the only thing I am concerned with. And to be honest, price wise, I dont mind paying the same for a little less. I will probably never ever use up an entire jar, so less doesnt bother me. If I can buy dazzleglasses without complaining about the price (although they are ripping us off) I can buy pigments without complaining either. I cant wait to see them now, the packaging is kinda cute :)

  18. Honestly, while I think MAC is a good deal for the price, if Im going to get loose shadows Im going to stick to a lot of the mineral makeup that I like these days. Though the old pigments from MAC really do last a long time. Ive had some of my jars for years and never really put a dent in them, like Violet and Fairylite.

  19. Rosie

    Im not a diehard MAC fan and know very little but I can say that just by picture comparison I like the new packaging :). I bought some pigments a year ago and they look like I havent used any up at all, so Im not worried. I like the nail polish packaging as well, and so I like seeing the pigment look like that. Looks more sophisticated for some reason when its elongated. It just went on a hardcore diet :).

  20. Naomi

    I actually like the new packaging; especially now that I can fit more jars in my freelance makeup kit without having to use sample jars.
    I definitely see myself purchasing more in the future.

  21. Lydia

    than K YOU FOR THIS!
    I never use it all up anyways :)

  22. Thanks for the comparison. I don’t quite understand why so many are upset in the change in packaging. It looks pretty cute from what I can see. I have lots of pigments in old packaging at the moment, some with 7.5 grams and some with 4.3 grams. I think people should consider how much they actually use before getting upset.

  23. Julia

    I understand what you are saying about the pigment being “fluffed” and how much can actually be in a jar, but still: look at the amount that’s left over of the Blonde’s Gold when you put it in the new jar. Customers are losing that, and not saving money.

    • Brynne

      Yes, but there was also a lot of leftover when she put the Universal Mix back into it’s new container. Or how much Blonde’s Gold didn’t fit when she switched it back into the old jar. Not a huge difference IMO

  24. Mel

    Thank you so much for breaking it down for us! :)

  25. Aramis

    I’m sorta indifferent about it! i only have push the edge pigment. If i bought more of the new pigments my liddo pte pigment would feel like and outsider. lol

  26. Jenny

    This was very informative, thank you for posting this! I haven’t tried the MAC pigments yet, mostly because I’ve read some people have had allergic reactions to them. I know plenty of people use them with no problems, but with my experience I’m scared my eyes will be too sensitive for the product. Maybe I’ll try them when I have my next break, I don’t want to go to school with swollen eyes…

  27. Jasmine

    I’m still irked. I will think twice before purchasing pigments in the future.

  28. anon

    You’re losing 40% of your product. That’s a significant difference.

  29. I still hate MAC for doing this. Pigments were my favorite product from the entire MAC brand.

  30. monique r.

    Alright- just sheer aesthetics here- the old packaging is much more appealing. I like the the logo was centered on the jar rather than at the top. The new cap just looks weird…and I’m not sure how making it look like the nail polish makes sense because those are liquid products and not powder….next, are we going to change the loose powder products to look like the nail polishes and foundations too? C’mon just doesn’t really make sense.

    PURE PHYSICS: being that pigments are almost by definition A MESS- making the jar opening smaller and the bottle taller, doesn’t really make any sense. I actually figured they were going to make the jars like the Solar Bits…

    yes, this is disappointing but to me, not about the reduction in product, more about interaction between the reduction in product and the non-sense change in packaging.

  31. Ashley

    I am really curious to see how the new pigment jars compare to a holiday pigment vial in size. Ive had sets of holiday pigments for more than 3 years and i’ve hardly put a dent in any of them. I like the look of the old pigment jars and i feel it will be weird adding in new jars next to my old one because i like a uniform look hahaha. I agree that it’s lame they’re not lowering their prices but i also agree that pigment goes a long way.

  32. I like the new packaging, it’s much neater than the old jar. But I’m not happy at all with the fact that they are charging the same for less product. It’s an injustice. I never bought a Dazzleglass due to the small amount of product for a ridiculous price, but I don’t know what I’ll do about pigments. We’ll see…

  33. cmferrets

    i just think all of us mac people are greedy and dont like change-but we should , bc we always go out and buy everything in their collections and should get what we paid for. i also think mac is being greedy as well, knowing that we buy their pigments and they know they can save more pigment and still charge the same.
    but …… what can u doo, its not the end of the world. i bet u in a couple of months we wont notice it and still buy their product just like we did with the dazzleglasses situation.

  34. Jenny

    Ummm…I don’t get it. Besides possibly space issues, how is this an improvement? I doesn’t get rid of the fact that pigments are messy and a horror if you spill some and by changing the shape of the bottle, they’re just facilitating more spillage. Anything taller and thinner just lifts the center of gravity.

    To me this just looks like bad marketing. They’re reducing the amount per bottle (because like you said, no one really *needs* that much pigment), changing the shape to hide that fact better without improving the packaging, and frankly while I was unlikely to buy a pigment before, this just makes me more sure that they are not the way to go for me. I imagine however, that people who like pigments probably won’t stop buying them but this isn’t going to help attracting more buyers.

  35. Erin

    I am angry that we’re getting less and paying more, any way you look at it, but I will probably still buy the new ones because I love pigments. I did stock up on five full size ones before the sizes change.

  36. We all need to boycott MAC. I think this is so ridiculous, it’s just like the less product in dazzleglass, but prices higher than their lipglass!!

  37. Peg

    Thanks for the comparison pics. What’s interesting is my Blonde’s Gold is in the old pkg but it’s marked as 4.3g/.15oz which is the same weight as the new pkg.

  38. amy

    It doesn’t bother me that they change the packaging. Though, I wish that I was getting the same amount of product as the old packaging for the same price, it doesn’t bother me either that I am getting a little less product because it is still a lot of pigment. More than I will ever use.

  39. Brian Kelly

    I hate it. The previous design was perfect and it stood out as a PIGMENT jar. I don’t want to have to look at it and not be reminded of a nail bottle or foundation. Not to mention, these won’t fit in any of my traincases.

  40. Laura

    I don’t know what the point of comparing two totally different pigments was?

    • Because my store only has old jar packaging, since this is something that has just taken effect… I thought it would help, regardless if there are (as I stated) other improvements to make the comparison even better. I also assumed people may want to know about it as soon as possible (particularly for the new, LE shades coming out on Thursday), rather than waiting weeks or months for new packaging to trickle into stores, you know?

      I’m sorry you felt it wasn’t worth doing, but I really do feel like it was.

  41. Jennifer

    Im not a big pigment person so I dont care that much. I do think these new containers are more conducive to storage-esp for makeupholics.

  42. The new packaging may look cute but the amount is not. Im guessing that I need to go buy Melon and Teal in the original packaging before they are all gone! :O

  43. i actually like the new packaging. my only gripe is that they do not match my “collection” of pigments I have acquired. Although there is less, there is still more than enough pigment to last me a lifetime. My only concern is that this tiny jar would more likely tip over than the wider base of the original jars.

    • I swirled and pushed at the new jar and old jar on my desk, the new one didn’t feel like it was particularly flimsy. Of course, a wider base is always more stable, but it felt pretty sturdy to me.

      • Thanks for updating me with that. That’s good to know. I have two little boys and with all the running around I do not want a nice jar of pigment to topple over. On a side note…just like my Air of Style bottle (original release) i can’t even put it in the pretty glass bottle, boo =(

  44. Natasha

    I just wanted to say that you are so dedicated to all your readers!!! I know that was a lot of work to do. Yet you wanted to share that information with us. Thank You!! You are very much appreciated!!!
    I have never bought any Mac Pigments because my MUA always gives me samples(because I’m scared to buy it and have it go bad after awhile). But I do want to start purchasing my own jars to have and the new packaging will not stop me from buying it. You may not get as much but you do still get a lot. I kinda of like the idea of the new container matching the foundation and nail polish bottles. .(Quick question how long are the pigments good for before they go bad? Do they go bad?)
    But anyways Thanks Again for your hard work!!!!

    • Hi Natasha,

      Happy to do what I can when I’m able to :)

      Technically, they shouldn’t, since they’re powder and shouldn’t harbor bacteria. If you’re worried, you could always purchase a full jar and use sample jars to hold whatever you’re using at the moment, so you never use from the original jar.

  45. imamakeupaddict

    Thank you SO MUCH for posting this, Christine! I’m pretty sick of all the b*tching and moaning about the change, and you explained very well that there’s really not much difference at all. Like you said, there’s still WAY more in a jar than anyone will ever finish in their lifetime. Give MAC a break, people!

  46. Abby

    You actually made me excited to get the new jars! I think that though it sucks having some of one size and some of another, I’m just going to keep the new ones together and the old ones together, and it will all work out I’m sure :) The size thing annoys me but I’d never use up an entire pigment anyways, so when I spend $20, I’m probably not going to use it all.

    Also, have we considered the thought that maybe they lessened it so people wouldn’t sell samples so much? Because clearly the pigments were so large that people shared, etc.

    • imamakeupaddict

      Abby, I think you are definitely on to something about the selling of samples…

      • You know what is interesting about samples… I used to sell pigment samples 4-5 years ago, way long ago… I believe I would get about $60-70 per jar of pigment (at $18 cost, at the time) on the top line (obviously I wasn’t making that much after shipping – $1 each and packaging – $1 each), but just think… at $3.50 per 1/4 tsp (and I’m using 4 tsp per jar), that’s really the equivalent of $60 for a jar. But of course, people are happy paying such an inflated price, because they’d rather spend $3.50 than $19.50, but it is an interesting, you know?

        • Rengirl

          I would rather pay $3.50 for product I’m going to use than $19.50 for a product I’m only going to use a tiny bit of (while the pretty jar sits there waiting for my clumsy hands to spill over).

  47. Tiffany

    I love the new packaging and I will still continue to buy pigments. I love them. :) Thank you for this!

  48. egon

    yes for people in the US who pay 19.5 they may still get more than what they are paying for but what about MAC in other countries?! in mine we pay 29 something dollars on a jar of pigment so it’s already expensive to start with, then they cut half?!!!! this it theft in broad day light MAC =(

  49. thanks christine for this helpful post! i’m still disappointed with the change even though it doesn’t appear that we’re losing that much. the principle is the pricing change which i think is completely wrong. one other thing, isn’t blonde’s gold a perm pro pigment? i thought i saw it on the pro site still but i could be wrong.

  50. Mariana

    the new pigment looks so chunky… :S

  51. Sasha B

    my problem with the new jar is that it looks like it’s hard to dip a brush in there if the jar is half full, and get a sufficient amount of product.

  52. daphne

    Here’s what is sort of silly: the actual cost to MAC of making the pigments is probably pennies. These are not expensive ingredients. This is not the kind of thing that costs a lot of money. The difference between the larger amount and the smaller amount is marginal and I can’t imagine it makes any appreciable difference in their profit to give you less for the same price. So that critique sort of goes out the window…but it also makes me wonder why.

    • I think at the end of the day it’s a business decision, and if it’s MAC being greedy, that’s because demand is high and ultimately, they think they can charge that and sell enough to make up any drop in volume from those who refuse or can’t afford to buy. I know other high end brands have pigments, but they charge the same as MAC but give way, way less (even with the new sizes).

      I guess for me… it’s beauty and cosmetics and makeup. Everything is, generally, significantly marked up if you just look at the cost to produce the product vs. the price tag. Last I read, the majority of costs for a beauty brand often stemmed from R&D and marketing (with marketing often the biggest piece). I’ve paid $50 for a lipgloss (which is my choice, and I would never expect everyone to agree, support, or do the same!), and I can be honest and tell you that it’s not worth $50 or that it’s twice as good as a $25 lipgloss or that $10 lipgloss is only half as good as a $20 lipgloss.

      And because it’s beauty and makeup… it’s fun for me. It’s supposed to be something I enjoy. If I start letting price hikes, increases, or whatever get to me, it loses the fun aspect — at least for me.

      But I do respect and encourage everyone to decide for themselves and voice it here — MAC is most certainly reading Temptalia and this post. I certainly bothered HQ enough about the nitty gritty details on it, so I’m sure they’re a lil’ curious about it.

      • daphne

        Yep, I pretty much agree with everything you’re saying here. But then, it’s probably easy for me, not being a pigment collector myself ;)

        (I so hear you about the expensive lipgloss comparison. The only thing I have that is comparable is my purchase of Guerlain Gems – is that lipstick worth three times my beloved Nymphette l/g or Viva Glam IV l/s? Heck no, not even with the special case. But in that one instance, I just wanted to have that one particular color and formula and that was how to get it. I don’t regret the purchase, but I’m not going to pretend that’s because a Rouge G is soooo much more valuable to me than a MAC l/s…just like 7.5 grams of pigment wouldn’t be that much more valuable to me than 4.3 grams, because god knows I can barely go through any of my 1/4 tsp samples :))

        • I have fifty or so pigments… I don’t know, enough, haha. I use maybe 2-3 pigments a month, if that. I guess maybe I’ve also gotten over it a bit ;)

          Exactly!! If I buy it, it probably means it’s *worth* it to me – whether it’s because it’s that perfect color, I personally ADORE the formula and willing to pay more for it, etc. I’m all for whatever makes you happy and doesn’t make you broke ;)

          I think the only pigment I’ve ever used much of is Gold Dusk, but I was wearing it ALL THE TIME… but I haven’t touched it in over year, probably. I was obsessed, but then I moved onto whatever else was the latest and greatest, lol!

          Such is beauty :)

      • Sixx

        You hit the spot with that one. I too, buy a lot of things I know deep down are “not worth the price” but I buy it anyways ‘cos it makes me HAPPY! =)

        • I think that’s why we have luxury goods in general, LOL. They sell a feeling and/or a sense of “I made it!” I don’t know. I pull out my Rouge G and I’m like SEXY! So classy! Ohh, I love using this! It’s just that feeling of yay and happy and beauty. If makeup was solely about utility, I could just keep my butt at the drugstore and use that, but it’s so, SO much more for me :D

      • Bridget

        I agree with you for sure. Any company charges the maximum price that it can and still have people buy their products. AT&T charges twice as much for the iPhone service than they do for any of their other smartphone plans, and the iPhone is still the most popular smartphone on the market. Similarly, MAC is only doing good business for themselves. The people who publicly complain about these kinds of things are in a pretty small minority, and most people who buy pigments from MAC will continue to do so. I don’t think the pigment issue is as important as other things they’re doing. Like you said before, why don’t people complain about the Dazzleglasses? I refuse to buy them and I resent that other new limited edition lipglosses MAC is selling have a similar pricepoint and the exact same packaging, while discontinuing some of the colors of permanent lipglasses. And the fact that a lot of the collections aren’t as good as they have been, with products with almost no pigmentation but pretty packaging, repromoting the same products and colors, etc. MAC has been doing these things for quite a while, and while I can’t really blame them with the economy being bad, and just simple rules of economics, but why are consumers just now taking notice?

        • You make some excellent points, Bridget :)

          Maybe it’s my business-y, entrepreneur background (and my mom’s while growing up) that makes me go, “Good job, MAC!” from a business standpoint, at least. And yet I know I’m a consumer and am paying for that “yay for MAC!” feeling, haha. But that’s addiction for ya!

        • I think with the Dazzleglasses it isn’t that people didn’t complain about the “increase” in cost vs product, its that it was a new line with new packaging, not a change to something that already existed. If they had introduced a new line of “Loose Shadow” lets say, I guarantee that an uproar such as this would not have ensued.

          The bottom line is people are resistant to change, yet open to new things. A new product line will be easier to receive than a change to an old one (even if it is an improvement to the quality of packaging, product, etc). I personally disagree with the repackaging of their pigments, but mostly because I like things to match, and the new pigment jars don’t match my old ones. The lack of pigment was a big deal to me in the beginning, and I can see how it would upset certain individuals, especially those that sell sample sizes and now have less to work with, but I got over that aspect of things, because aside from choosing not to buy MAC anymore (something that I cannot even think about doing) there isn’t much I can do but express my opinion. I’m still busy being upset about the fact that the makeup brand created in my country (Canada) costs more here than it does to export it to the US. Now THAT is a kick in the head.

          Also, I dos NOT go unnoticed that most of the collections are simply the same items repackaged and resold with different names as limited edition, and within the community it has also been noted by several beauty gurus I follow that the quality has decreased since the Estee Lauder acquisition.

  53. Justine

    while i agree that paying the same amount for less product sucks, i have never ever even come close to finishing a bottle of pigment. you literally get SO MUCH it’s not even funny. i’ve split some in half to share with a friend and still not even come close to using it all up! so i’m ok with it. they are a business – i’m sure there’s inflation – and they need to make the $$$ to stay in business to give us more beautiful things :D

  54. Nic

    This is a huge pet peeve of mine. Companies do this all the time! They make the packaging smaller and charge you the same amount. It’s even more annoying to me that MAC isn’t printing the size on the new jars. Normally my feeling is that if a company wants to charge more for a product that they should keep the packaging the same and raise the price. To be fair, that might not have been the best option in this case. $19.50 is already a lot to plunk down for a single pigment. I always considered it a fair price because you got a TON of product, but I probably wouldn’t be keen on spending more than that. Given the choice (only in this particular case) between getting less pigment for $19.50 or paying more for the regular 7.5g, I’d probably choose the former – because, as you mentioned, I will probably never finish a whole jar of pigment. But I can’t help that it still gets under my skin. I don’t find the new packaging unattractive, but it looks less practical for those who like to store their pigments upside down.

    As for Dazzleglasses: The packaging of them annoys me too, but for different reasons. It bugs the hell out of me that they obviously package them to look as though you’re getting far more product than you actually are (and charging you more, to boot!). But I purchase them anyway because they’re a different product from Lipglass, and I’m willing to pay more per ounce for a product I like so much. Also, Lipglasses still exist. So if I decided that I just wasn’t willing to pay $18 for .06 oz, I could just go back to buying only Lipglasses. The difference in packaging is frustrating, but it’s not quite the same (in my view) as if MAC repackaged all of their of their lip glosses in Dazzleglass tubes. If they did that, I would probably stop buying glosses from them altogether.

    Anyway, thank you for posting this comparison, Christine.

    • I do wonder what the reaction would have been had MAC kept the weight at 7.5g but charged you $25 for it!

      One concern I’ve always had about the Dazzleglass packaging is whether MAC is testing out consumer response to new packaging and sizing/pricing. It just seems like MAC pricing has been going up a little faster than expected, particularly on any “new” product type. (Part of me is further paranoid, because Cremesheen Glasses and Dazzleglass Cremes were both in the new tube-tastic packaging.)

      I do understand, and I certainly don’t condemn anyone for being upset. It’s all about value and what’s worth it to you. At the end of the day, even if I keep pigments until I’m 50, at some point, I’ll be throwing them away (disuse, grossness that it’s 25 years old, whatever) and likely still throwing away a significant amount of product that went unused.

      Do I think MAC is being greedy? I don’t know, it’s hard to say. I think it’s an obvious business/corporate move, and I don’t know enough about the cost structure of makeup as a whole nor MAC’s. In the end, they’re probably being more greedy and less economical per se, but like I said, it’s all just guessing without more info!

      • Sixx

        MAC prices going up so dramatically at this rate is scary! I bought a full jar of Reflects Transparent Teal less than a year ago for only $17.50!

  55. Kristine

    Thanks for posting this Christine!this was really helpful for me. I have one more question though…does this mean that all of the pigments are now on a new packaging? or are they still mostly packaged in the old jars and mac will just wait til they run out of the old packaging then start selling the new packaged ones?

    • Hi Kristine,

      I asked this question on Twitter an hour ago, and it looks like stores have the new packaging. It’s a mixed bag as to what you can buy – it does sound like if they’re out of a pigment in the old packaging, they’ll be giving you the new stuff. Some readers said that the stores have them but won’t sell them until old jars are out. Another reader said her artist told her that they were sending all the old jars back and putting new jars out right away.

      • Kristine

        Thanks for the reply. =)

      • Letitia

        Man…this makes me excited sort of. If they send the old jars “back” does that mean they might show up at a CCO? (Preferably one near me!) I surely hope so :) I could get the old jars to $10!

  56. Katie

    Thank you so much for doing this comparison! It makes me feel much better about the change after seeing all of this. :)

  57. While realistically I understand that this is still more than most will use up in a lifetime of owning a pigment, I still think it’s kind of… (can’t think of a proper word, but something very conniving and bad) that they’re giving us less and charging the same. It just doesn’t seem fair at all to do that. And honestly I hate the little holiday set jars because it’s so hard to get the color out without smushing the brush so I’m sure it will be ok but I’m not a fan of narrower containers…

    Ok. Done ranting. :)

    • *but I’m sure it will be ok since it’s not as narrow as those jars, but I’m not a fan of…[blahblahblah]

      • lol, no worries! I understood :)

        It’s definitely big enough for you to get a 239 in there. I get grossed out by dipping the brush into the jar, so I always tap it out myself. But I’m also a germaphobe :P

    • It’s okay, let it all out :) I completely understand & respect anyone who is upset and/or won’t be buying the pigments in the new jars!

  58. K

    First of all, I am totally going to pick up Universal Mix now.

    Secondly, thank you so much for creating such a thorough, extremely detailed post on this topic. You are my #1 rated beauty blogger out there and this is an excellent example of why. You’re not afraid to address controversial topics and weigh in with your own opinions which I always find have logic behind them (hey, many don’t when it comes to make-up!)

    I personally am not affected by this change other than the OCD in me wishing all the jars were the same. I will still continue to buy pigments. It is a smart move on MAC’s part – I am sure there are cost savings with the new jars plus think how much money they are saving by selling less product for the same retail price. I don’t think this will affect the average consumer. Most don’t look at the actual quantity of product they are buying.

    • Thank you! :) I just thought, “OK, let’s be real!” It was partially to satisfy my own curiosity, but I figured it could at least help some people out.

      I do agree that it’s very much a business move, and I think sometimes us addicts think we are everything to MAC, but there are a lot of consumers that don’t know about every move they’re making and just buy when they stop by. Like MAC’s best-selling shades may not even be popular amongst die-hard MAC fanatics (I remember seeing a list awhile back and being like, “WHAT?!”). I’d also like to think that a company of MAC’s size and distribution would have done at least some, if not extensive, testing of the packaging and didn’t just slap it together in a month!

      One thing about the new packaging is it looks very modern to me. It makes the older packaging look a little dated and old, surprisingly. I’m not exactly sure why it does that (at least for me), though.

  59. amazing post! Thank you!!! You didnt miss a thing!

    • David

      As someone who has worked for MAC for over 11 years, while I feel your pain, I can say that over the years, customers have constantly asked if the pigments came in something smaller. I understand everyone’s feeling about the price, but really… I have pigments from when I first started that I have used barely half of still.

  60. Jennifer

    Unless you are using the pigment everyday and for a bigger area than just your eyes, this smaller amount is still a ton. With the new amount you are getting lets say three to four of their pressed single shadows for basically the price of one. And the 7.5g one gives u about 5 pressed powder sizes. So it isn’t too much more…But yeah the price is about the only thing that bugs.

    However single shadows come in 1.3 and 1.5 g’s and they charge the same for both, so yeah.

  61. Lorna

    i like the look of the new pigment packaging. i just wish i hadn’t already bought pigments in the old packaging because like many OCD people, i like my products to match and it will drive me bonkers to have pigments in the old style and then the new style sitting side by side and NOT matching. admittedly, i am not a HUGE pigment fan; i still prefer pressed e/s because i am less likely to be clumsy and spill them everywhere.

    i think another reason why people are getting so mad is because the change is visibly obvious. with the dazzleglasses, it’s easy for people to say it is a different product and maybe the glitter they used cost more than a lipglass so a price increase would not be so readily noticed. with a change in pigments it’s like the consumer is getting less of the same product for the same price of the same product. it’s a lot harder for some people to swallow than taking a product and reformulating or renaming it and then selling at a higher price point. maybe if MAC had “done away” with pigments and then reformulated the product and named it something else, people wouldn’t kick up so much of a fuss.

    thanks for the comparison.

  62. Angela Ott

    It is still a lot for a loose eye shadow BUT its not marketed as an eyeshadow, its marketed as a multi-use product. If you only use it in eye shadow, than its probably not a big loss, but if you use it in other ways– like its supposedly intended, it is a big deal(it is sort of like an eye cream vs a body cream.) What other company would get away with giving you nearly half the product for the same money besides maybe food? Most would not have the nerve.they essentially doubled the price of the product, most companies would not do that either.

    I do think there was uproar about the Dazzleglasses and I heard of lots of people that were not buying them because of the cost/size comparison. I am included in that, I won’t buy them anymore, not once I realized they were more expensive per gram than Chanel gloss. Personally, the numbers don’t lie and no piles will make it feel right that MAC is choosing to do this.

    All that said, I don’t plan on buying more MAC, I will be spending more time and money getting to know Nixie and Make up forever better :D

    • Is Nixie still around? They totally disappeared for a while (site was down, people didn’t get orders.) When I saw the site was back up, I contacted them to confirm
      they were still taking orders & I never got a response. Just something to be aware
      of.

  63. Brenda

    This was an EXCELLENT idea!! In all honesty, I’m 30 years old, have been using makeup regularly for 15 years and have NEVER hit pan on a single eyeshadow!!! I have SO MANY it will just never happen, and with pigments you get so much more (about 4 times the amount of a regular eyeshadow)..i checked the weights on the packaging, they are 1.5grams

    the only thing I may see as a problem for myself is I am messy, when I’m doing art pieces, baking, cooking, makeup…I’m a bit of a klutz so I’m afraid I may knock the new package over more easily than the squatty ones. And I do think the MAC logo should be lower on the jar.

    That’s my 2 cents worth :)

  64. Norma

    this just depressed me.

  65. I think what bothers me most is this: MAC may say that the new, taller-but-skinnier package was chosen to fit in better with their other packaging, but it also conveniently fits in with consumer studies that say that people perceive that there is more product in a taller-but-thinner container than a shorter-but-wider one. In other words, not only are they giving you less for the money, they’re trying to hide it by changing the packaging dimensions in a way that will optically conceal (or, at least, make it hard for you to compare) the extent of the difference between the old size and the new size.

    Now, I’m all in favor of selling cosmetics in smaller quantities, and I’ve blogged about thinking that most cosmetics products are really just Way Too Big. (How many blog posts or MUA comments have you seen in which people mention that they’ve never actually finished a product?) So yes, give us less, by all means (it’s ultimately more beneficial for both the company and the consumer) — but not for the same price, and don’t try to disguise the change by optical illusion.

  66. Mommy2Maya

    This would explain why my CCO had about 10 pigments when I shopped there yesterday…I was like a kid in a candy store!

  67. ocelot1

    what irks me the most is that they do this when the economy is in such a crappy state…its like they dont give a f about people…they make themselves seem like a “midend” brand, but at times the value of their stuff is not “mid end”.i will prob stop buying pigs or look elsewhere for pigs (hello fyrinnae!)

    • I think that’s the worst about it. We’re not even really getting ripped off, because the amount hasn’t changed (’cause the Richmetals were the same grams) just the packaging has. But the timing… when the economy is SO BAD, and SO MANY of us are struggling to even pay our bills, to see a favorite product LOOK like it’s getting smaller isn’t great for their image.

  68. I just realized something Christine! Im looking at my MAC Heritage Rouge pigment that I got at the CCO. And it is in the old packaging but the amount that is listed is 4.3g/.15 US oz. So wouldn’t it be that they are just changing the packaging and not decreasing the amount since it has been done?

    • I know for the Richmetal pigments, they were always listed as 4.3g, though my jar says 7.5g. Other pigments are still listed as 7.5g and have been (e.g. Fuchsia pigment in the older jar was still 7.5g!). I know mattes are typically 2 or 2.5g, but some mattes are 7.5g (True Chartreuse is 7.5g, I believe).

  69. Maggie

    I think the packaging is cute but I guess I’d only think that if I didn’t already have a few pigments & glitters in the old jars. Like everyone else, my OCD tendencies are worrying about organization. I’m not too bothered by the size change, only because I’ve had a few pigments for over a year and they are at least 98% full, if not more. It kind of makes me sad they’re doing this but I do understand the business motivation. It just irks me that we’re paying the same amount for less, even if we will never finish it.

    I didn’t even think about the fact that they won’t fit standing up in a traincase & that really bothers me as well. But most of all, I keep having these awful, awful visions of me accidentally knocking it over. I spilled a bit of my Mutiny pigment, and that was in the old jar! I can just see myself accidentally hitting this & having it topple over like a huge tree in a forest, hahaha. I know MAC = makeup, not physics, but come on guys… Fail. :P

  70. Ribbons

    I can totally understand why people who use pigments a lot are upset about the new packaging meaning a loss of product but I personally am not too fussed about this. I buy pigments with grand ideas of using it everyday and then 6 months down the line I realise I swatched the product once and havent been back to it since so it would be rather hypocritical of me to start having a go at MAC about it now. It seems to me that there is enough product there to last a life-time (at least for someone like me who never uses them yet still feels the need to buy buy buy) and Im getting used to prices going up on everything so I will just accept it and continue to purchase. I can, however, totally understand why people may be aggravated by this not just with the less product but also with storage. I dont think anyone really likes packaging to be different sizes once you have a storage system you like!

    Thanks for the comparisons Christine.

  71. Leea

    I dont like the new packaging, because a lot of people have them organized, like me, and these will just mess it up or not fit in my containers -.-

  72. Im not terribly concerned myself, mainly because I know there are soooo many other companies producing quality pigments at much more reasonable prices. I will always check Barry M, TKB, Stargazer, Kryolan and several other sources when I know Im in need of a specific shade. MAC may be a last resort for me, but If theyre the only ones making the shade Im looking for, or they happen to release a LE that catches my eye, am I going to stress about spending $19.50 now that its a smaller jar Ill never empty? Probably not :)

  73. Rita

    I’m a bit confused. I have only one normal size pigment, Heritage Rouge from MAC Collection. The jar looks like the old one, but it says 4,3 g – what package is that?

    • Some pigments were 4.3g – the new ones are 4.5g – mattes are often 2 or 2.5g (I can’t remember exactly). The majority of pigments were 7.5g though.

  74. Wow! Thank you Christine! This was very informative! And helped ease my mind about it a lot!

    And kudos to you for having the guts to pour out a jar of pigment! I totally would fret about it! (What if I sneeze???)

    If anything, these pictures just make me want the new Universal Mix pigment, because the pictures are so pretty! (And makes me kick myself for never getting Blonde’s Gold!!)

  75. Lydia

    It’s clear that MAC wanted to increase the price of the pigments (perhaps production costs have risen?) Rather than a price hike, I would prefer a size reduction. A price hike would require me to increase my budget; not so with a size reduction. If you don’t like it, or can’t afford it, don’t buy it. The argument that a volume reduction must be followed by a price decrease makes as much sense as that a price hike must be followed by a volume increase.

    The only problem with size reduction that I could see is when one intends to sell or share the pigments; profit margin for the reseller will of course be reduced. But that is how the world works: prices go UP over time.

  76. Jessie

    MAC doesn’t fill the pigments up by how big the jar is though. They do it by weight don’t they? So, dependent on the pigment weight is how much product you get.

    For example in the larger jars my blondes gold pigment came pretty much overflowing, I use it all the time and it always seems full, however with heritage rouge it pretty much came half empty brand new because of the pigment weight.

    So, the Universal Mix even though it overfills that jar when puffed what happens when we get a heavier pigment like heritage rouge or a glitter for example. We’ll still get WAY less.

    Though I am greatful for the comparison, I would like to see it with glitters also, since they are something that cannot be puffed up.

    • I think glitters have a different weight? Glitters also used to be priced at like $14 or $15, but then went straight to $19.50 a pop recently, I believe… I remember they were definitely cheaper than pigments at some point, and then they were the same and I was confused, lol.

  77. Liza

    Thank you for taking the time to do that comparison. While I understand that companies change their packaging/products all the time, what I find annoying is that in Australia we already pay so much for MAC and to lose some of the product seems a little unfair – for lack of a better word. Pigments cost $39AUD for 7.5g (that’s approx $35USD at the current currency rate.)

    Overall I don’t foresee the change affecting me purchasing pigments, I just might complain about it occasionally.

  78. To my opinion, this is maybe just a symbol, but I won’t buy these new pigments. Of course there is still plenty of product inside, but I refuse to pay the same for less product.

  79. I am still very unhappy (=mad) about the change of the packaging, decreasing the amount but still keeping the old price.

    Blonde’s Gold in the old jar is only 4.3g so I don’t think we can really see the decrease in comparison to Universal Mix which is 4.5g in the new packaging. If the texture of both is the same it is basically a comparison of almost the same amount of product.
    A comparison between a perm Pigment in the old and new packaging would look more drastic I think because 3g less it a lot.

    Sure 4.5g still will last a very long time but because I assume that MAC made profit with the old jars/amount too I think this price increase of almost 67% is pretty rude if not even nasty.

    • Mine is 7.5g… the jar says that. So, I’m not really sure what I can do for you – that’s why I grabbed this one, it said 7.5g on the back and it was 100% full since I’ve never used it. I don’t know if I’m ever going to bother purchasing a pigment just to waste it (literally, to buy a dupe… and I don’t know if I have full jars of anything permanent, so I might have to buy 2 – an old jar and a new jar, assuming I can find an old jar), since I don’t have a scale (and I’m not going to throw away money on a scale I don’t need, you know?), but maybe someone else will do it :)

      • Have you got a preview/sample of the Overrich Pigments? If so maybe they have sent the samples with the standard 7.5g print. My Blonde’s Gold which I bought directly from the Pro Store says 4.3g on the packaging and jar.

        It would be a waste to buy an old and a new jar just to compare them yes. :(

        • Nope, bought in-store (regular freestanding when they came out).

          I know that I buy makeup willy nilly, but man, something about buying jars just to dump them out and compare seems so, so wasteful, lol. It reminds me of artistic photos where they dump out or cut off lipsticks!

  80. Roxanne

    First and foremost, lots of kudos to Christine for messing around with her pigments, eh? I like that someone is able to give us an opinion based on facts (e.g. pictures).

    It’s very interesting to follow this discussion. I think it has gone a lot further than a bit of fuss about a “packaging change”. We all have to keep in mind that MAC is a corporation… not charity. That doesn’t mean they’re stone cold money-grubbers, but as with all companies, their goal is to make money. Period.
    It’s kinda funny though. I don’t think there would’ve been as much uproar if the amount stayed the same, but the price went up. A lot of people seem to think that that would be a completely different thing but in essence, it’s not. If they would up the price but keep the amount the same, you still wouldn’t be getting your money’s worth. You would get LESS than what you’re actually paying for, right? Same thing. It’s just feels different because there’s a minus in the equation and not a plus.
    And as Christine already mentioned, the Dazzleglasses aren’t exactly the best deal you would come across. It’s also pretty curious that people are reluctant to pay $20 for 4.5g but are willing to pay $3.50 for 1/4 teaspoon as a sample. Let’s do the math here: $3.50 x 4 = $14 x 4 (teaspoons in one jar) = $56. Relatively speaking, again, you’re getting LESS than what you’re actually paying for.
    Lastly, I don’t know if we’ll be able to actually tell until someone puts two identical p/m –1 old jar, 1 new jar– next to eachother for comparison. This one was pretty helpful too, though. As usual, very thorough and well thought out. She makes some very good points, concerning textures etc.

    You just need to look at things in perspective. Besides, I don’t think there is anyone who will completely give up on pigments just because of this. You’re too addicted! And I’m pretty sure MAC is aware of this fact too, LOL.
    I’m just glad I haven’t gotten into them yet myself. I will say this though: if MAC continues to increase prices, I don’t know if I will continue to buy there. It’s supposed to be mid-end, not high-end, right?

    • Thanks, Roxanne!

      You really make an excellent point, and it’s something that we as customers often forget. Customers are, obviously, incredibly important and even vital to a company’s success, but MAC is not non-profit. They are here to make a profit, and so, sometimes they will do things you dislike. I personally think they churn out so many LEs because it’s particularly profitable for them to do so, even if the quality may not be as good as it was when they only had 20 launches, at least in *our* eyes.

      Based on the price per ounce of the 0.15oz. for $19.50 jars, the price hike would have been $32.50 for the size of the old jar. I would be curious if people would have still felt as compelled to purchase pigments at $25 or $27 or at $32. I know at $32 I’m looking at like, “WHOA!”

      It’s kind of like how some don’t purchase Benefit Powders because they’re $28, even though they have a ton of product (0.42 oz. – most blushes are 0.21 oz. or less) because they don’t think they’ll ever finish it and they’d rather not spend $28 on one product, but would rather get 2 blushes or a blush and a half.

      Which is kind of why pigment samples still work, even though you’re totally right that people are paying much, much more that way. When I used to do samples, I got around 16 samples out of a jar, sometimes more, and sometimes a little less.

      But I do share your concern about some of the pricing of MAC lately. $18.50 for glosses? $25.00 for the new blushes from Spring Colour Forecast…

      • Roxanne

        This is seriously too much math for me. I have a final in Statistics tomorrow and my head is already spinning. I just figured, if I calculate with MAC pigments instead of X’s and Y’s, I might pull it off, LOL!

        Anyway, you make a good point about the LEs. Why not make Feline permanent? Or Queen’s Sin *wink*? Or some MSF’s? Because they know people love those and will stock up if they’re unsure about the next release.
        I do feel like MAC is getting more and more expensive. Which is sad, because the founders intended this makeup to be high qualtity BUT affordable for everyone, right? But then of course, Estée Lauder bought the company… which already worried me back then, frankly.
        I just hope they refrain from any more price increases. It’s pretty much the only mid-end brand we have. We have Dior, Chanel,… at one end of the spectrum, and then drugstore stuff at the other end (which isn’t a bad thing). It’s right there in between, you know?

        As for the Benefit Powders… It’s all about your comfort zone and personal likings, IMO. Some people are afraid to turn to other brands, because they have no experience with them. Even though it’s quite clear you get a better bang for your buck (which is why I like your comparions by the ounce/gram since I have NO idea how much gram there is in one ounce… I’m guessing like… 50?).
        I would looove me some Benefit though. It’s a little too pricey here as well. Not that I don’t want to spend the money… I just can’t really tell if I adore something until I’ve actually tried it on my (sensitive and acne-prone, boo!) skin. The Benefit gals aren’t too happy with me swatching or trying out stuff so that’s what’s holding me back :) But I digress!

        On another note, I’m pretty sure some people who are against “paying more for less pigment”, aren’t so worried about spending $50 on an “okay” high-end lipgloss (I’m not talking about EVERY single one of you, of course). If you are however madly in love with those lipglosses, money’s not really that much of an issue anymore, you know (or it is, but we pretend it’s not, LOL)? See? Personal likings!

        I guess at the end of the day, it just kinda sucks. But so does a final of Statistics (boo!).
        Ya damned if ya do, and ya damned if ya don’t :)

        • Good luck on your final, Roxanne! I hate, hate Stats! With a passion :( I just started yet another stats class yesterday, booooo.

          It’s good that you’re swatching and trying it on at the counters, though :) Better to make one good purchase than a bunch of little just okay or bad-for-you purchases!

          Yeah, I realized after I paid $50 for a lipgloss, my view on value is totally on the tilt now, lol! But I’m not so swayed by marketing that I’m close to believing it’s twice as good as a $25 lipgloss… but man, I just love that color!

          • Roxanne

            Thanks, I hate it too! This will be my third time :( I suck at math.

            And I didn’t want to judge anyone by saying that, but it just shows that makeup is very subjective :) You can’t put a price on lemming.

            • I thought I was done with math forever after undergrad stats & calc, but NO, MBA requires THREE MORE STATS COURSES AHHHH. It’s like death :(

              Exactly! You just can’t. Value/worth is so, so subjective :)

  81. I dont like the new packaging too. And I will buy my favorite colours now asap in the old packaging, and I will stop buying pigments in the future, just if there is a new limited colour that is really interesting I will maybe buy it. I will not help MAC to earn more money in this way!Absolutely ridiculous

  82. Sarah M

    It’s not ideal but I really don’t mind, for the simple reason that I’ve paid more for pigments weighing less than this. A classic example would be £15.00 for Illamasqua’s pure pigment, weighing 1.5 grams or £13.50 for Benefit’s lust dusters, weighing 1.8 grams (FYI MAC pigments cost £15.00 in the UK) & I probably wont even get through those. The way I see it, there is no point in me getting upset because in all reality I will probably still buy the pigments anyway. I am sorry, however, for those of you who are upset by this. :-(

    • Sarah M

      … Oh, & I kind of love the new packaging too. I think it’s real cute! :-)

      • I like it. I don’t love it, but I think it does look newer, sleeker, and more modern. Side by side, I feel like the old jar looks exactly that – old and dated. It’s kind of weird!

        • Sarah M

          You know what? I have totally change my mind. I wasn’t bothered at all by the new packaging or the size/price, like most people were but now… I just bought four glitters with the new packaging and all of the lids cracked. I am so upset. I’ve never made a complaint to mac before but this is just unacceptable! :-(

          • Oh no! Did they come cracked or what happened? I haven’t had that happen (I only have four jars, though).

            • Sarah M

              I don’t have a pro store near me so I placed a mail order and they just arrived in the post this morning. None of them had the lid screwed on right (they were kind of sitting diagonally… if that makes sense) so I unscrewed them and twisted them shut the way they should be. I didn’t apply much force at all but then I looked to see a crack in the side of every jar lid meaning they are really loose now so if I turn the jars upsidedown (which is normally how I store them, so that I can see the names) the lids will just fall off and there will be a whole lot of glitter everywhere it shouldn’t be. I’m not happy! :-(

            • I would call and complain — they should take care of it very quickly, if it’s broken!

    • Here’s a lil’ breakdown of high-end pigments (since you brought it up)… U.S. prices, but you get the idea…

      MUFE Pure Pigments $158.33/oz. (0.12 oz. for $19.00 – MUFE size varies PER shade of Pure Pigment, as low as 0.03 oz. as high as 0.16 oz.)
      MUFE Star Powders $211.11/oz. (0.09 oz. for $19.00)
      MUFE Diamond Powder $342.86/oz. (0.07 oz. for $24.00)
      Illamasqua Pure Pigment $600.00/oz. (0.04 oz. for $24.00)
      MAC Old Packaging $75.00/oz. (0.26 oz. for $19.50)
      MAC New Packaging $130.00/oz. (0.15 oz. for $19.50)
      Urban Decay Loose Pigment $666.67/oz. (0.03 oz. for $20.00)

  83. Kate M.

    Thanks for such detailed descriptions…you’re so thoughtful in all your posts!!

  84. Nicole

    Thanks for the compairson, Christine.
    I welcome the new and smaller packaging, because the old size seems to be too much product to use, which was always the reason for me not to buy a pigment.
    But I don’t like the fact, that the price is still the same.

  85. J

    If you think $19.50 for a smaller amount of product is a rip-off, us Aussies will probably still have to pay $39 for a smaller amount of product.

    Thank god I dont ever intend to buy any full size pigments -_- totally ridiculous.

  86. mirta

    thankfully I always buy used stuff, never been to a mac store and I rarely use pigments but I like this new packaging a lot more, my only complaint is the price, it should be like $16.50 now.

  87. Not good, not good :)

  88. Sum

    hi christine thanks so much for such a fab detailed review..i was just wondering, reading the posts below that if u dont dip your brush directly into the pigments, what do u do? because any other method would make such a mess? Can everybody share ideas of what they do as that would be a great help to me..especially with holiday sets pigments because the top is too small to get my brush into it :(
    thanks so so much! :)

  89. ann

    It still is more money for less product. MAC is losing more and more of my business, and this is the final straw.

  90. Annie

    Thanks for this post, Christine!
    I don’t care what anyone says though: I’m still effing annoyed. I like the old packaging, the thinner opening on the new ones seems to be a guarantee that you will spill some product. Also, I like the shapes to be the same, because I’m obsessive that way.

    & I’m still mad that we’re paying the same for less – even though you will probably never finish it, that doesn’t justify it in my eyes!
    I will have to get some more of the old ones before the new packaging comes in here. Though I’ll probably never stop buying them, IMO pigments are – next to brushes – the best thing MAC has to offer.

    • Let it out, Annie! :) I was also hoping to make this post a place where everyone can express themselves and let it all out. And maybe feel a little less annoyed and a little better that there are lots of customers who are upset too! Sometimes just venting helps. :)

  91. Ruby

    I agree. It sucks that they’re charging us more for our pigments and we’re getting less of it. But your right I’ll never use it up. I’ve had my vanilla pigment for 3 years and it’s only probably 15% finished. It’ll be many more years before I need to buy another. But still I’m a collector too and I’m OCD about how things look, the new packaging is going to drive me crazy, because its not going to fit into the same drawer as my other pigments.

  92. Evelyn

    It doesn’t matter if realistically we never use them up. It’s still less product for the same amount of money which is annoying and makes you think twice before buying. I’m indifferent to packaging but a spillproof lid would have been nice, maybe like they use on spices. :)

  93. Annett

    The new packaging is interesting, but not my fav. As for charging more, that’s kinda a rip off.
    .at

  94. Mora

    I don’t now, if someone already mentionned.
    But Mac says that they sell Pigments in Weight not Volume. That’s why sometimes the jar doen’t look full.

    I have a few pigments and this is true. So, your comparison is nice, but we still lose 40% of the product (in weight) and we still pay the price for 100%.

    And is doesn’t matter for me, if I use the whole jar or not. Fact is, we pay 100% of the price for 60% of product and i don’t think mac will changs its mind, because people will still buy it.

    I mean, I love the pigments and i’m sure i cannot resist to buy a special color which really appeals me.

    But, i really appreciated this comparison, thank you!

    (sorry for my bad english – I’m from Switzerland)

    • I know it’s supposed to be sold by weight, but like a lot of things (e.g. food), I wouldn’t be surprised if they always gave you a little more rather than right on the dot. I’ve only had mattes or metals come less than half full, but all of the other pigments have been totally full (I have about fifty or so). But it’s a great point – teaspoons are a volume measurement, grams/oz are a weight measurement.

  95. I’m starting to like the new pigment jars now since it was hard to accept it and now OCD in me will miss the old pigment jars as well. I’m still going to keep buying pigments since I love them so much.

  96. lauraaaaaaaa

    seeing this makes me realize a really want Universal Mix

  97. Julia

    I know some people don’t ever finish a pigment, but there are some people who do. Plenty of makeup artists will be effected by this, and lots of diehard pigment fans will also be hurt. Some people ONLY use pigments and no other eyeshadows, and can finish a jar if it’s a color they love.

    At the end of the day, you are spending more money per product. It may not be a big deal for those of us who never finish a pigment, but it will be for those who do.

  98. sleepyhead

    well, don’t be fooled by the “illusion”. mac is using the same “taller but thinner” trick as they did with dazzleglasses. we all know that mac pigments have different textures, so depending on which texture you choose, it’ll be filled differently. try fitting an old jar of frost in the new jar, you’ll probably end up with half of it

    there are 2 ways to judge how much product we actually get. weight and volume.
    1. the matter of the fact is that even mac admits it’s 3 grams less than before
    2. if you do the math, the old jar is indeed about 60% bigger than the new jar, volume-wise. sure, it looks “marginally thinner”, but volume for cylinder shape is proportional to the square of the diameter. from the 1st picture, the diameter of the new jar is 145 pixels, where as the old jar is 187 pixels. so the new jar would have to be 70% taller than the old jar to have the same volume.

    i’d like to see you filling up both jars with water, and compare the difference in volume

    and you forgot one of the reasons why we are upset is because the new jar is thinner, taller, with bigger top than bottom, didn’t have an insert. all of these make it much more likely to tip over and spill. it’s hard to believe mac is putting customer first when they come up with such retarded design.

    • RE: size

      I do address concerns about the size – it does also have a plastic insert at the top… I twirled and spun it around, and it doesn’t just topple over if you breathe on it. Nothing with a smaller base will be as grounded as something with a wider base, but I don’t feel this is just going to knock over if you breathe too hard around it, you know? If you turn and knock into it with your elbow… both pigment jar packaging styles still tipped over for me, because the force is still too high for either jar to take and be stable.

  99. I’m not going to stop buying pigments because of the new packaging. I think $19.50 is a good price, even if we get a little less product. Pigments will last a lifetime and they are less expensive than an e/s from a high-end brand (Dior, Chanel…).

  100. HC

    I love pigments. I think I have a condition of collecting pigments. Sigh. I’m definitely going to lash out and pick up some Universal Mix! So pretty :)