Sunday, July 22nd, 2012

MAC Illustrated - Smoky Eye Plum Kit
MAC Illustrated – Smoky Eye Plum Kit

New from MAC – Smoky Eye Plum Kit

MAC Illustrated – Smoky Eye Plum Kit ($49.50) includes three eyeshadows, two travel-sized brushes, Technakohl Eyeliner, and a travel-sized Zoom Lash mascara. It’s a Nordstrom exclusive set and available both in-stores and online. There is another palette available, but it contains all permanent shades, so I only purchased this one for review.

  • Creative Whim is a pale lilac with subtle cool undertones and a soft white frost. It has a satin finish. The color payoff was just so-so–there was obvious sheerness. MAC Dynamic Duo 2 is similar but more metallic in finish, slightly less pink. Tarina Tarantino Diamond Dusk is paler, cooler-toned. MAC Silverwear is lighter.
  • Drawn to Drama is a darkened violet purple with a blue shimmer-sheen. The texture was on the dry side, which you can even see in the swatch, which resulted in decent pigmentation but nothing to get excited over. Urban Decay Ransom is lighter. MAC Pink Union is brighter, more red-toned. MAC Parfait Amour is lighter. Urban Decay Frigid is nearly the same. Estee Lauder Untamed Violet is more subdued.
  • Moody is a brown-tinged medium-dark gray with a satiny sheen. It is a veluxe pearl, and it is also a repromote. The texture of this is not at all like your typical veluxe pearl, because it lacks the buttery, dense feel. The color payoff is lacking, and it’s not usually the case with veluxe pearls that pigmentation is a problem. Instead, Moody feels dry and applies that way, making it difficult to blend out. Shocker of shocks! — it’s from an old nemesis, Evil Eye, where I actually made the same observations then as I did today. MAC Hint of Sapphire and Inglot #434 are most similar to this.
  • Purple Dash is a red-toned plum with subtle shimmer-sheen. This shade is part of the permanent range. Make Up For Ever #4L is just like this shade.  Technakohls tend to wear between six and eight hours on me.

All three eyeshadows are full-sized ($45.00 value), and the eyeliner is also full-sized ($14.50 value). The travel-sized mascara is half the size of a full-sized one ($7.50 value), and it’s hard to put a value on the travel-sized brushes. The brushes were scratchy when I tried using them, and I’m not a huge fan of the 212 as a good multi-purpose/general brush. It’s more of a specific action brush, so I don’t think it makes sense to include it in a set like this (you’d probably one brush to apply eyeshadow and another to blend it out). Though Nordstrom lists the value at $100, I’d put the value around $67 realistically.

While I personally like the collection’s illustrations, this palette is unwieldy. It’s just unnecessarily large, and it really does so in order to hold the brushes, eyeliner, and mascara. This might be something that would have worked better if they had made it a double-decker palette and hidden the brushes and eyeliner underneath the eyeshadow and mascara.  Too bulky to be a great travel palette!

I tried wearing the three shades together, and the nice thing about them is they coordinate well with each other.  The downside is that none of them are good eyeshadows; they’re all disappointing in some way or another.  All three shades suffer from lack of pigmentation, and Drawn to Drama and Moody are very dry and are difficult to blend during application.  Without a primer, they wore seven hours before looking a bit faded. With a primer, they lasted a full eight hours without creasing or fading.

The Glossover

palette

MAC Illustrated's Smoky Eye Plum Kit Review, Photos, Swatches

D+
I don't know if I've ever given so many D+ grades in a week, but here's another one for you! I imagine most will be interested in the palette for the eyeshadows over the travel-sized brushes, mascara, and eyeliner, so go out and buy three good MAC eyeshadows individually and save $4.50. It's not a value if the products included are sub-par.

Product

6.5/10

Pigmentation

7/10

Texture

6.5/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

3/5

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Sunday, July 22nd, 2012

MAC Freehand Cremestick Liner
MAC Illustrated Red x3 Lip Color & Bag

MAC Illustrated: Freehand, Totally Fab, Must Be Red!

MAC Illustrated Red x3 Lip Color & Bag ($39.50) includes three products plus a small makeup bag: Freehand Cremestick Liner (new and exclusive), Totally Fab Dazzleglass Creme (repromote), and Must Be Red! Cremesheen Lipstick (new and exclusive).  This set is limited edition and exclusive to Nordstrom for their anniversary sale, but it is available in-store and online.

Freehand Cremestick Liner is a medium yellow-based red that’s not too blue-based. It has good color coverage. The Cremestick Liner formula is fairly creamy without being something that would slip and slide–it will stay in place on its own or help your favorite lipstick last just that much longer. When I tested Freehand on its own, it lasted for an impressive eight hours, but my lips were noticeably parched after that.

Totally Fab Dazzleglass Creme is an ornage-red with pink and white sparkle. Chanel Triomphal is blue-based and darker. MAC Russian Red is more opaque and blue-based. MAC Sonoran Rain has mor gold shimmer. YSL Golden Red is comparable but the gold shimmer is larger. MAC Wonder Woman is similar. Dior Little Red Dress is also comparable. It has semi-opaque color coverage. It wore for four hours and was neither drying nor hydrating. There was some settling into lip lines, but the color coverage helped to hide it.

Must Be Red! Cremesheen Lipstick is a subtly yellow-toned red with barely-there gold micro-shimmer. MAC Ruffian Red is a little more orange-toned. MAC Red Racer less yellow-toned, but they are similar. CoverGirl Hot is similar but more opaque. Bobbi Brown Old Hollywood is also comparable. It’s mostly opaque, but you can still see a hint of my lip freckle peeking through. This applied more easily than a lot of other Cremesheen lipsticks–it seemed a bit creamier. It wore for six hours and was slightly drying.

Whenever MAC releases lip kits like these, it’s actually one of the few true value sets they launch. You’re getting three full-sized products for $39.50, and if they were available individually, would set you back $48.50.  This set was definitely better than the pink set, though Must Be Red! was still a little drying (not as bad as Vivid Imagination, though!).  Even though all three reds are lovely shades, they seem rather dupeable, so you may already have similar reds in your stash.

The Glossover

product

MAC Illustrated Red x3 Lip Color & Bag Review, Photos, Swatches

A-
This set was definitely better than the pink set, though Must Be Red! was still a little drying (not as bad as Vivid Imagination, though!). Even though all three reds are lovely shades, they seem rather dupeable, so you may already have similar reds in your stash.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Sunday, July 22nd, 2012

MAC Pink Treat Cremestick Liner
MAC Illustrated Pink x3 Lip Color & Bag

MAC Illustrated Collection: Pink x3 Lip Color & Bag

MAC Illustrated Pink x3 Lip Color & Bag ($39.50) includes three products plus a small makeup bag: Pink Treat Cremestick Liner (part of the permanent range), Julia Dazzleglass Creme (new and exclusive), and Vivid Imagination Cremesheen Lipstick (new and exclusive).  This is a Nordstrom exclusive and is available both online and in-store now.

Pink Treat Cremestick Liner is a medium-dark neutral-cool pink. It comes in a twist-up mechanical pencil, and it contains 0.009 oz. I think Pink Treat was the first lip liner I ever bought (for sure, the first mid-range/high-end one). I don’t have that many lip pencils in my stash, so I don’t know what may or may not be dupes for this particular shade. It is significantly darker than the lipstick included in the set, though. I like Cremestick Liners, because they’re a lot more forgiving during application and when worn than other lip pencils. The only downside is, like most mechanical pencils, there isn’t a whole lot of product in ‘em, and if you use it regularly, you’ll find yourself going through it relatively quickly.  This lip liner wears about six hours on its own.

Julia Dazzleglass Creme is a rosy beige-brown with soft pink and gold shimmer. There’s not a lot to the gloss–it’s really on the sheer side and adds mostly shimmer rather than color. It seems to bring out the redness in my natural lip color. It looked and acted a lot more like a regular Dazzleglass than the Dazzleglass Cremes (which typically have more color payoff). You could easily dupe this with any sheer, shimmer-filled gloss. Here’s a whole gallery of options. When I wore this, it lasted a mere hour and there was some traveling glitter particles.

Vivid Imagination Cremesheen Lipstick is a light-medium yellow-toned pink with a creamy finish. Le Metier de Beaute Fiji is darker. Bobbi Brown Orchid PInk iis lighter, less opaque. MAC Please Me is extremely similar–at most, marginally darker! It yields mostly opaque color coverage, and the consistency is thin for as creamy as this looks. It does pull and tug a little bit, though not like a particularly dry, hard-to-apply lipstick, but it doesn’t glide-on. I tested the wear on this shade, and it managed four hours (which is average), but it was a bit drying.

Whenever MAC releases lip kits like these, it’s actually one of the few true value sets they launch. You’re getting three full-sized products for $39.50, and if they were available individually, would set you back $48.50.  I’m not over-the-moon about this set, unfortunately.  The best part about it is Pink Treat as far as quality goes, and if you like the design, then the bag might take the prize. (I dig it!)

The Glossover

product

MAC Illustrated Pink x3 Lip Color & Bag Review, Photos, Swatches

B
I'm not over-the-moon about this set, unfortunately.  The best part about it is Pink Treat as far as quality goes, and if you like the design, then the bag might take the prize. (I dig it!)

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Friday, July 13th, 2012


MAC Illustrated Collection + Nordstrom Exclusives

Three renowned illustrators transform classic M·A·C makeup bags into mini masterpieces. Julie Verhoeven’s bold colours and outright wit come alive, featuring an array of abstract faces swept with vibrant hues. François Berthoud’s intricate flowers convey pop art chic in fluoro-brights. Nikki Farquharson ’s design is a graphic, bold hand-drawn black-and-white pattern, hit with swirls of red and yellow. Available in two sizes—one scaled for just necessities, the other for total beauty. Limited Edition. M·A·C Store exclusive.

Illustrated Bags ($30.00 U.S.; $35.00 U.S. / $36.00 CDN; $42.00 CDN)

  • Petite Bag by Nikki Farquharson Black, gray, yellow, orange, blue
  • Small Bag by Nikki Farquharson
  • Petite Bag by Francois Berthoud Flowers
  • Small Bag by Francois Berthoud Flowers
  • Petite Bag by Julie Verhoeven Faces
  • Small Bag by Julie Verhoeven Faces

The following products are exclusive to Nordstrom for their Anniversary Sale!

  • Smoky Eye Plum Kit by Julie Verhoeven ($49.50) Includes Creative Whim, Drawn to Drama, Moody eyeshadows; 275 and 212 brushes, Purple Dash Technakhol Eyeliner, Mini Zoomblack Zoom Lash Mascara
  • Smoky Eye Black Kit by Julie Verhoeven ($49.50) Includes Naked Lunch< Wedge, Carbon eyeshadows; 275 and 212 brushes; Graphblack Technakhol Eyeliner, Mini Zoomblack Zoom Lash Mascara
  • Peach Lip Color & Bag by Julie Verhoeven ($39.50) Includes Ravishing Lipstick, Sublime Shine Dazzleglass Creme, Creamkiss Cremestick Liner
  • Pink Lip Color & Bag by Julie Verhoeven ($39.50) Includes Vivid Imagination Lipstick, Julia Dazzleglass Creme, Pink Treat Cremestick Liner
  • Nude Lip Color & Bag by Julie Verhoeven ($39.50) Includes Creme d’Nude Lipstick, Natural Talent Dazzleglass Creme, Sublime Culture Cremestick Liner
  • Red Lip Color & Bag by Julie Verhoeven ($39.50) Includes Must Be Red! Lipstick, Totally Fab Dazzleglass Creme, Freehand Cremestick Liner
  • All Over Brush Kit by Julie Verhoeven ($49.50) Includes 129, 227, 224, 219, 266 brushes
  • Face Canvas Brush Kit by Julie Verhoeven ($49.50) 187, 130, 282, 286 brushes

Availability: Illustrated Bags @ online at maccosmetics.com on August 16th and MAC Stores on August 23rd, 2012; September 2012 at select international MAC locations; July 12th, 2012 for Nordstrom Exclusives

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