Thursday, September 27th, 2012

MAC Flaming Rose Nail Lacquer
MAC Flaming Rose Nail Lacquer

If You Can Get Your Nails on ‘Em…

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).

Flaming Rose is a medium-dark red with subtle blue undertones. It has a cream finish, and it is part of the permanent range. The consistency was thin but not watery, and it was opaque in two coats. It dries down quickly and finishes with a fairly shiny result. Dior Marilyn is similar, slightly lighter. Cult Nails Evil Queen is a bit brighter. MAC Touch of Red is similar, a bit more jelly-like. MAC Russian Red is very comparable. Zoya Sooki is lighter. butter LONDON Pillar Box Red is very close.

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.

Stage Red is a deepened red with a cream finish. It’s opaque after two coats, and it had a thin (but not watery) consistency that made it easy to apply. butter LONDON Pillar Box Red is lighter. MAC Obey Me is a bit lighter. MAC Asiatique is lighter. Zoya Burke is similar. MAC Get Noticed is a bit darker.

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 RoseKid 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).

The Glossover

product

MAC Marilyn Monroe Nail Lacquers Reviews, Photos, Swatches

A-
Worth noting, Vintage Vamp brought down the overall rating significantly--if not for it, the other four would have received As.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4.5/5

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Saturday, February 4th, 2012

MAC Al Fredo Nail Lacquer
MAC Al Fredo Nail Lacquer

MAC Shop MAC, Cook MAC: Nail Lacquers

The collection features three limited edition shades of MAC Nail Lacquer ($16.00 for 0.34 fl. oz.). These include: Al Fredo (bright acid green), Kid Orange (coral), and Salad Dressed (mid-tone dirty aqua).

  • Al Fredo is semi-sheer dirty yellow. Honestly, it looks a lot like Deborah Lippmann Yellow Brick Road on me, with the same sheerness, but with a less jelly-like finish. The bottle looks a bit green-tinged, but the polish just looks yellow against my skin tone. It is a bit difficult to work with some streaking, and the consistency was a little thick. I did two coats for swatches, and it was clear that there was going to be visible nail line even with three coats.
  • Kid Orange is a orange-coral with a cream finish. It was opaque in two coats, and it had the best formula of the three shades. It wasn’t too thick or too thin, so it applied evenly and easily without bubbling or streaking. MAC Oriele is a bit lighter. Essie Meet Me at Sunset is a bit redder. Essie Braziliant is pretty close. China Glaze Life Preserver is redder.
  • Salad Dressed is a medium teal-blue with a cream finish. It was mostly opaque in two coats, but I did have some issues with it being streaky. It had a longer drying time, and it would benefit from patience–you really need to let each coat dry. The consistency is on the thicker side as well. MAC Ocean Dip is greener and darker. Essie Turquoise & Caicos is greener. China Glaze For Audrey and Chanel Nouveau Vague would be the closest dupes, though they seem perhaps lighter.

The formula on Al Fredo and Salad Dressed left something to be desired, and MAC did not indicate that Al Fredo was going to be as sheer as it turned out to be.  It wasn’t just slightly under-pigmented; it was the type of sheerness that I would expect to be called out explicitly.  Kid Orange applied beautifully and had good color payoff, though.  Salad Dressed had better pigmentation but still had some streaking and formula issues.  At this price point, MAC really needs to fine-tune their lacquer formula so it’s consistently good.  Keep in mind, the rating is an average of the three shades, so while Kid Orange is higher than a C+, Al Fredo is lower.

The Glossover

product

MAC Shop MAC, Cook MAC Nail Lacquers Review, Photos, Swatches

C+
Often, high-end brands put out some really complex, interesting colors, and while MAC can launch beautiful shades, they're not known for innovating in the nail category. Sometimes this innovation can forgive a less-than-stellar formula. Without it, it's just pricey, under-performing polish.

Product

7/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

3/5

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