Monday, February 18th, 2008

MAC Cosmetics: Guide For The Newly Addicted, Part 1

Company Back Story

MAC stands for Make-up Art Cosmetics. It was created in 1985 in Toronto, Canada by Frank Toskan and Frank Angelo, both who worked in the beauty industry. They coined the philosophy and company ideology of “All ages, all races, and all sexes.” MAC was thus privately held until Estee Lauder acquired the company in 1998. Frank Angelo passed away in 1997, and Frank Toskan left the company after Estee Lauder bought them out.

MAC Aids Fund was begun by the original creators of the brand, but has since been continued by its parent company. They utilize fundraising through the selling of products labeled Viva Glam, which include lipsticks, lipglasses, and limited edition lip palettes. 100% of the sale price of any Viva Glam product is donated directly to the MAC Aids Fund. They recently celebrated raising over $100 million for the charity.

Where to find MAC Cosmetics?

MAC Cosmetics is divided into three distinct type of stores. The company originally started as a resource for professionals and makeup artists working in the industry, so in keeping with that origination, there is a special line of products and certain stores that sell what are known as PRO products. Like other cosmetic brands, MAC also has counters that you would find in department stores like Macy’s and Nordstrom. Additionally, MAC has standalone stores called freestanding stores that are found in malls, and they are their own entity and only sell MAC.

MAC Cosmetics can also be purchased online in several countries. Visit www.maccosmetics.com, their official website, to make purchases online.

What’s the difference between the types of stores?

In terms of what you can buy, counters offer the most limited selection. Freestanding has a wider range of products, while PRO stores carry the entirety of MAC’s permanent products.

What you might not find at…

Freestanding Stores: No products marked “PRO only,” which includes lip products such as Lip Erase, PRO Lipstick shades, PRO Gloss, Lipmix; eye products such as PRO eyeshadow shades, PRO pencil shades; certain shades/formulations of foundations, powders, concealers; PRO only blush shades, blush palettes, and blush pans; multi-purpose products such as PRO only shades of cream colour bases, Paint Sticks, PRO only shades of Pigments, Chromacakes, Glitter (loose), Mixing Medium, and Airbrush makeup/supplies; and certain accessories like PRO only brush types, bags, and cases.

Counters: In addition to what you won’t find at a freestanding store: no empty palettes, pan eyeshadows, pigments, smaller range of many products (cream colour bases, brushes, etc.).

Online: Online offerings are much like freestanding stores in the range of products and types they offer, but certain products like empty palettes and eyeshadow pans will not be available.