MAC Marilyn Monroe Nail Lacquers ($17.50 for 0.34 fl. oz.) include five shades: Flaming Rose (true red), Kid Orange (coral), Rich, Rich, Rich (glittery gold), Stage Red (dark berry red), and Vintage Vamp (rich deep retro wine). Both Flaming Rose and Vintage Vamp are permanent, so they can be purchased at a later date or in regular packaging (for $16.50).
Kid Orange is a brightened, medium-dark orange with subtle red undertones. It has a cream finish, but it almost looks a little squishy like a jelly to me. The consistency was thin without being watery, and it was mostly opaque after two coats. This shade was released previously. Chanel Holiday is lighter, less red-toned. NARS Lal Mirchi is similar. MAC Morange is a bit lighter. MAC Oriele Orange is more subdued. Essie Meet Me at Sunset is similar but a bit redder. Essie Braziliant is similar.
Rich, Rich, Rich is a golden bronze with a micro-glitter/large shimmer finish. It dries down pretty quickly, and it was fairly opaque after two coats. This is/was an online exclusive, and I’m not sure if that means only to maccosmetics.com or not. Chanel Delight is warmer, browner. MAC Soiree is almost more of a peach-brown.
Vintage Vamp is a medium-dark brown with burgundy and red undertones. It has a cream finish, and it is part of the permanent range. This shade was very streaky, and it didn’t look opaque after two coats (which seemed more the result of the streakiness of the polish). Guerlain Lou-Ling is darker. Deborah Lippmann Single Ladies is also darker. China Glaze Velvet Bow is more opaque and darker. Zoya Anja is darker and more purple.
I only had problems with Vintage Vamp, which was streaky and significantly sheer after two coats. For such a dark, vampy color, I’m surprised–the market is flooded with similar shades that are all easy to work with and opaque. The formulas of Flaming Rose, Kid Orange, and Stage Red had a great thin consistency that made each coat dry faster but without sacrificing ease of application or opacity. I typically get a week of wear out of MAC’s polish formula.
Keep in mind, online retailers like Nordstrom, Macy’s, Dillard’s, and Bloomingdale’s will also launch the collection online. These retailers typically launch close in time to the in-store release date (October 4th).
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Where to Buy
This product can be purchased at the following retailers:
MAC Cosmetics; September 27th online at maccosmetics.com and October 4th for in-store. $17.50 each
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MAC Nail Lacquers ($16.00 for 0.34 fl. oz.) has thirty-one new (well, some newer than others) shades being added to the permanent range. I don’t have any of the brand spankin’ new ones to share with you, but I did receive a press kit that included a set of swatches on plastic nails. Since I didn’t do the swatching, I have no idea how many coats were used or anything like that. As soon as I’m able to purchase the polishes, I’ll do so and have swatches for you at that time. For official descriptions, please see this post. For now, here are my descriptions of them based on the included swatches:
Deep Sea is a deep, dark blue-teal with a hint of green. It has a cream finish. I reviewed it here when it first released.
Midnight Tryst is a bluish gunmetal gray with fine teal and silver micro-shimmer–there appears to be some brushstrokes in the swatch. This is a new shade.
Formidable is a dark purpled burgundy base with a duochrome of blue-teal to fuchsia-purple. It has a pearl finish. I reviewed it here when it first released.
Mean & Green is a dark olive green base with a duochrome of rosy plum to golden olive green. It has a pearl finish. I reviewed it here when it first released.
Vintage Vamp is a dark burgundy-red cream. It has a cream finish. I reviewed it here when it came out during the holidays.
Rougemarie is a medium-dark blue-based red. It has a cream finish. I believe this was always part of the permanent range, but I don’t think I have it.
Flaming Rose is a brightened medium red with a cream finish. This is a new shade.
Sparks on Screen is a red glitter polish with multi-sized particles of ruby red, crimson, and lighter red. It has a pearl finish. It is a new shade.
Shirelle is a brightened orange-red cream. I believe this was always part of the permanent range, but I don’t think I own it.
Impassioned is an orange-coral with a cream finish. I reviewed it here, though it seems slightly pinker on the plastic nail (my natural undertones could make a color appear more or less warm). I’ll have to pick up a new bottle to see how they compare.
Morange is a brightened medium orange with a cream finish. I reviewed it here.
Fiestaware is a lightened tangerine orange with a cream finish. I reviewed it here.
Soiree is a champagne and copper shimmered shade with a frost finish. I reviewed it here.
Skin is a light peach-orange with a cream finish. This is a new shade.
Faint of Heart is a soft ivory with a hint of warmth. It has a cream finish. This is a new shade.
Delicate is a pale white-pink with a cream finish. I reviewed it here.
Snob is a slightly warm, mostly neutral light-medium pink with a jelly-like finish (but it is a cream finish). I reviewed it here.
Girl Trouble is a silvered, pale purple with a pearl finish. This is a new shade.
Screaming Bright is a muted metallic gold-champagne–possibly a little pewter. This is a new shade.
Saint Germain is a light-medium pink with blue undertones. I reviewed it here.
Steamy is a medium-dark blue-based pink with a cream finish. I believe this has been part of the permanent range for sometime, but I haven’t reviewed it previously.
Girl About Town is a rich, nearly-neon fuchsia pink with blue undertones. It has a cream finish. I reviewed it here.
Quiet Time is a gray–tinted light-medium beige with a cream finish. I reviewed it here.
Coffee Break is a medium-dark gray-tinted brown with a cream finish. This is a new shade.
Anti-Fashion is a subdued, smoky purple with subtle red-brown undertones. It has a frost finish. This is a new shade.
Dark Angel is a deep purple with red undertones and a cream finish. I reviewed it here.
Spirit of Truth is a brightened navy blue with a cream finish. I reviewed it here.
Discotheque is a metallic light silver with silver shimmer. It has a pearl finish. This is a new shade.
Nightfall is a dark, gunmetal gray with silver shimmer. It has a frost finish. This was released previously, but I don’t think I have it.
Nocturnelle is a glossy black cream. I reviewed it here previously.
Some MAC nail lacquers are great, while others are less stellar (some being notorious for poor application). The majority of these shades, from what I remember, were easy enough to apply. I know the lacquers from the recent Fashion Sets collection were fairly good overall. Formidable and Mean & Green were two highly coveted shades from MAC’s Venomous Villains collection, even though both have several exact dupes on the market (Bad Fairy was the harder one to dupe).
I think the biggest issue I have with MAC’s nail lacquers is that they’re priced as if the brand were high-end, rather than mid-end. For example, NARS’ lacquers are $18 a pop, while their lipsticks are $24–MAC’s lacquers are $16 a pop, while their lipsticks are $14.50. Additionally, most high-end nail brands still give you 0.50 fl. oz., but MAC bottles contain only 0.34 fl. oz., so you’re really getting squeezed on both ends. For some reason, the price of MAC’s nail lacquers seems to have accelerated far faster than the rest of their product’s price tags. So without a stellar formula, they’re absolutely not worth it. If the formula is on point and the color up your alley, they’re certainly worth a look.