Here are some possible dupes/comparisons for a few of the eye products from Surf Baby.
SAFFRON is closest to MAC Coppering (permanent), but it’s not quite as red and the finish makes them look different. Red Brick (PRO) is redder.
SHORT SHORTS is closest to Nylon (permanent), which is golder. Soft Force (limited edition) is a lot yellower, while Fresh Daisy (limited edition) is whiter. Femme-fi (limited edition) is beige in comparison.
SUN BLONDE is closest to NARS Mangrove (permanent), which is a little greener. MAC Jasmine (limited edition) is similar but lighter. Gorgeous Gold (permanent) is shown more for the family of color as it is far too light to be a dupe. Goldmine (permanent) is shown to contrast against what a yellower, truer gold looks like in comparison. Crest the Wave (limited edition) and Going Bananas (limited edition) are shown so you can see how much yellower they are compared to Sun Blonde.
SURF USA is closest to Gulf Stream (limited edition), which is just a hair lighter. Newly Minted (discontinued) and Melody (discontinued) are similar in color but not as dark.
SWELL BABY is probably closest to Print, which I don’t own (or couldn’t find if I do own it), and it’s not really similar to other grays that I own. Electra (permanent) is too light, while Silver Ring (permanent) is darker and cooler toned (almost looks blue in comparison). Copperplate (permanent) looks almost edged with plum. Smoke & Diamonds (limited edition) is too brown in comparison.
BLUE MOON is a lighter version of Urban Decay Covet (permanent). Float on By (limited edition) is a little darker and bluer.
MAC Surf Baby Eyeshadows ($15.50 for 0.05 oz.) come in five shades: Saffron (deep coral caramel), Short Shorts (frosty white champagne), Sun Blonde (dirty yellow gold), Surf USA (frosted teal), and Swell Baby (mid-tone grey).
Saffron is a rusty orange-red with a soft sheen. It has a satin finish, and it was originally launched with Mickey Contractor (’11).
Short Shorts is a pale white gold with a frosted finish. It has a frost finish. This is a shade we’ve seen before–think Soft Force, White Tie, Manila Paper, etc.–for a permanent dupe, Nylon is your best bet, though is a little yellower and more metallic in the finish.
Surf USA is a vibrant medium-dark teal that leans green. It has a frost finish–but it is a very, very subtle frost. It’s more like a cross between a satin and frost finish, actually. It’s a more vibrant version of Gulf Stream–the closest permanent dupe would be Shimmermoss, which is bluer and not nearly as vibrant. You’d be better off trying NARS Misfit as a dupe, though it’s a little greener.
Sun Blonde is a golden mustard yellow with a satiny sheen. It’s this great mix of gold and mustard yellow. It has a frost finish, but like Surf USA, looks less like your typical frost and more like a satin. It’s kind of like a much richer Gorgeous Gold (without the duochrome, obviously!). I can’t think of a dupe for this one in MAC’s past/present line. Maybe a darker, metallic version of Jasmine. NARS Mangrove would be comparable though.
Swell Baby is a medium, silvery gray. It has a satin finish. It’s a little lighter than Print.
These are some of the best eyeshadows MAC has put out in the past year (excluding Peacocky’s Mega Metal Eyeshadows, which were some of the best eyeshadows put out by MAC ever, if you didn’t pick up any, FOR SHAME!), and the reason being is that all five have excellent color pay off with smooth texture. To hit all five out of the park, I think, is quite a feat–for any brand–and MAC does so well with these.
Every shade is worth getting--it just depends on your personal preferences for colors and the like. Short Shorts is the least unique of the five, while Sun Blonde is the most unique.
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Where to Buy
This product can be purchased at the following retailers:
MAC Cosmetics, in-stores on May 26th
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There are four new and limited edition Eyeshadows ($14.50 for 0.05 oz.) in MAC’s Mickey Contractor Collection. They include: Marvel (deep purple with soft pink pearl), Oomph (forest green with soft gold pearl), Rani (bright fuchsia with soft pink pearl), and Saffron (deep coral caramel).
Marvel is a grape purple with soft purple micro-shimmer. I had some pigmentation issues with this shade; it seemed a little sheer–really couldn’t get it to build up as nicely as I’d like to see. This is a frost finish. It is a brighter version of Top Hat (Starflash ’08), less intense version of Push the Edge pigment (Make Up Art Cosmetics ’09), less pigmented version of Grape pigment, similar to Violet pigment, and more purple than Fertile (Strange Hybrid ’08). I’d also say it’s a mix of Satellite Dreams and Purple Haze as far as permanent shades go.
Oomph is a blackened forest green with subtle gold shimmer-sheen. This is a veluxe pearl finish. Given the veluxe pearl finish, it seems less pigmented and not nearly as buttery as other shades in the same finish. It’s slightly greener than Greensmoke (discontinued), darker and blacker than Humid. NARS Night Porter is closest but more pigmented.
Rani is a brightened medium fuchsia pink with subtle white micro-shimmer. It’s a little sheerer than I’d like to see. This is a frost finish. It’s a less iridescent version of Romping (C-Shock ’07, Hello Kitty’ 09), significantly pinker than Passionate, and pinker (less fuchsia) than Madly Personal (Stylishly Yours ’10). I’d opt for Make Up For Ever #75 if you want something really pink. NARS Divine (pink side) also seems quite similar.
Saffron is a softened, burnt orange with subtle micro-shimmer. This is a satin finish. It was smooth, pigmented, and easy to blend out. It’s a less orange, rustier version of Rule. Maybe like a combination of Red Brick and Rule but with a satin finish.
Oddly enough, it is the neutral shade (Saffron) which has the best pigmentation and smoothest texture. The other shades were a little disappointing in pigmentation, and I think they are easier to dupe. Also, noteworthy, Oomph only has 0.04 oz., while the other three are the typical 0.05 oz. size. I wonder why that is!
MAC Mickey Contractor will be available on January 6th at select North American stores and January 2011 for select international stores. It will be available online on approximately January 4th but may not be available until the 6th.
FINAL THOUGHTS: I would skip Marvel, consider Oomph and Rani, while Saffron would be my top pick. I’m not keen on handing out an overall rating across four eyeshadows with varying pigmentation issues. Saffron certainly does not deserve a lower rating because Marvel suffers from pigmentation and textural issues! Saffron lies in the B+/A- range, while Marvel is at the bottom at a C/C+ range. Oomph and Rani hover around a B/B-.