MAC Prep + Prime Highlighters
MAC Prep + Prime Highlighters
MAC Prep + Prime Highlighters ($23.00 for 0.12 fl. oz.) are a new and permanent product that will release in-stores on April 7th. There are three shades: Bright Forecast (mid-tone peachy coral), Light Boost (soft yellow cream), and Radiant Rose (light shell pink). They come in a twist-up, pen-type applicator. These highlighters are designed to provide a “sheer wash of color to highlight, brighten, and perfect.”
- Bright Forecast is a soft peach with subtle orange tones. The peachy tones of this shade are good for brightening and lightening dark under eye circles without creating a green cast (that yellow-based correctors can cause). I found this one did the best to minimize my dark under eye circles while still looking natural.
- Light Boost is a pale beiged yellow. Yellow is good for lightening darkness. This would work well as a subtle cheek or brow highlighter on those with yellow undertones.
- Radiant Rose is a soft, pale pastel pink. Pink helps to brighten the skin tone. It can also be used to brighten the under eye area, like Benefit’s Eye Bright. This shade felt more opaque than the other two, and when I used it underneath my eye (without concealer on top), it was a little pale on me. I loved it more as an eyeshadow base and brow highlighter.
The Prep + Prime Highlighters come in a click-type brush pen that takes several initial twists to release the product, but after that, you should only need a couple clicks to dispense the product. Over time, I’ve become less of a fan of brush-type products, just because I hate the way the brush feels and looks as you use it and the product seems to just sit in there. I’d much rather use a separate brush that you can wash without fear of getting water back into the product. I did find that while it can be easily applied onto the skin with the applicator, blending and application went better using a fluffy brush like the 217 for small areas (or fingers).
I applied each shade over my cheeks and under eye area, because I really wanted the effect to stand out. I felt like when I just did the under eye, it was difficult to really see what was going on. I wouldn’t normally use these as I did for the swatch photos, but I figured what good are photos if you can’t spot the difference? These have a subtle effect, and if you layer concealer over them, the effect is even harder to pick up–not necessarily in a bad way (like, ooh, so subtle it’s not worth it), but it’s a subtle, natural effect that works well and looks lovely. More like, “Oh, you look pretty today, did you cut your hair?” kind of way.
These wore really well for me, and I even used Radian Rose as an eyeshadow base. It looked really beautiful as a brow highlighter and lid brightener by itself, but it also held up as an eyeshadow base, too. I didn’t notice any fading and certainly no creasing or settling into fine lines over eight hours of wear.
There are numerous brands with highlighter pens, including:
- Dior (Sun Beam may be comparable to Bright Forecast; Roseglow to Radiant Rose)
- Fresh (nothing seems comparable in color–these are skintone shades)
- Fusion Beauty (nothing seems comparable in color–these are skintone shades)
- Givenchy (Moon Light seems most comparable to Radiant Rose)
- Guerlain (nothing seems comparable in color–these are skintone shades)
- Sephora (#01 seems like Radiant Rose, #02 seems like Light Boost; #06 seems like Bright Forecast)
- YSL (Light Peach seems comparable to Bright Forecast, Luminous Ivory to Light Boost, and Luminous Radiance to Radiant Rose)
These can help correct and brighten but they won’t necessarily conceal on their own. Bright Forecast can help a good deal with under eye circles, but it’s not opaque, so for some, it may be enough on its own. They’re definitely comparable to cult-favorite YSL Touche Eclat. Sephora also seems to offer a very comparable color range in their variation on the highlighter pen, and at $12 a pop, it might be worth trying (overall Sephora ratings show it to be good, though I have not tried it myself, so I cannot weigh in).
MAC is roughly half the price of the higher-end highlighter pens, and they seem to provide double the product (I saw many listed at 0.05 oz., a couple closer to 0.10 oz.), so the product seems to be priced in line with quantity and MAC’s price range.