8 Must-Have MAC Pigments

8 Must-Have MAC (Consumer) Pigments

About the Temptalia Must-Haves Series
A series of posts showcasing must-have products from MAC Cosmetics’ permanent line of products. Selections are based on quality, universality, uniqueness amongst the line, and the like. Limited edition shades are deliberately excluded to make buying easier. Readers’ comments act as a supplement to these lists of their favorites and must-haves. You can find the entire series here.

Old Gold pigment is a stunning combination of yellowed green and green-gold mixed together. It’s an interesting mix of green and gold with a little bit of brown. This is a particularly good pigment for those with warmer tones in their skin.

Teal pigment is exactly as it is named — teal. It’s pigmented, smooth, and looks rich on eyes.

Golden Lemon pigment is a bright pop of yellow gold with lots of frost in its finish. It’s not necessarily a product for those who don’t love shimmer/frost in their eye products, but it is one of the best bases to use for gold, orange, and red eyeshadows.

Golden Olive pigment is a gorgeous soft, olive green. It’s smooth in texture, rich in color pay off, and feels soft. If you wear green eyeshdaow often, tihs is an absolute must.

See four more must-have pigments!

Melon pigment is a sunny, peachy-pink combination that can be worn alone, as a base, or to highlight.

Pink Opal pigment is perfect for highlighting and accenting the face, lips, or eyes. It’s one of the most versatile pigment shades, and definitely a favorite of mine.

Violet pigment is a beautiful shade of rich, medium-to-dark purple. It’s not too cool, not too warm–almost neutral–so it is great for all skin tones. Like the other pigments on this list, the product is pigmented and smooth to the touch.]

Vanilla or Naked pigments are superb highlighter/neutral shades to have in your pigment collection. Vanilla tends to work better on cooler skin tones, while Naked works on all skin tones, but it can lean just a touch warm.

Note: This list only considers consumer pigments, so it does not include PRO-only pigments. (There is a separate list for PRO-only pigments.)

What are your favorite pigments?

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Saira Avatar

Another Saira – I’ve not met many other people with the same name! I only just met another Saira for the first time a couple of weeks ago!

amy Avatar

I’d like to give a shout-out for Tan~~ this is a really under-rated neutral for blue-eyed makeup lovers or if you cannot handle the richer shades like violet or teal

Saira Avatar

I really like Old Gold and Pink Bronze pigments. Those two pigments have lots of different tones in them which come out depending on the way the light catches them.

margot Avatar

I love melon and pink opal. I love using pink opal on my lips to do a nice pinky lipgloss and i’m definitely loving naked these days :p

Miss Trendy Avatar

my go to pigment is “deck chair”… its no longer available but it was oh so pretty and my jar is still nearly full and i’ve had it since 2005 i think. current shades i love are rose and vanilla and melon! mutiny is becoming a new love … need to get me pink opal.

Nathalie Avatar

My favorites are generally duochrome

– “Old Gold” (my first pigment!)
– “Blue Brown” (that gorgeous red brown with blue-green reflects! – it’s my big favorite)
– “Steel Blue” (medium blue with gold reflects)

…but I also really love “Violet”. Not a color I thought I could wear because so far from my usual range but surprisingly, it works on me! I’d love to pick “Teal” someday.

As much I adore pigments, there are some I hate: Mutiny (really gorgeous on the jar but awful on me) and Helium (I’m having hard times with pink duochrome).

Miss Trendy Avatar

oh yes i need to add blue brown to my collection! violet is awesome i agree! i use hellium in my tear ducts… I get compliments asking what’s that colour!!! give it a try.

Emily Avatar

I live in mauritius and MAC cosmetics are not available in my country 🙁
Do you know an online store where I can order them. The colours are beautiful

Ilona Avatar

My faves are blue brown and tan… I just hate how I have to be so careful so it doesnt get all over the place. But the colors are worth it!!


press ur pigments in a pallet either Mac pallet or I used an old estee lauder eyeshadow palette n saves you from making a mess xx

Miss Trendy Avatar

yuppers and makes them portable by putting them in a quad for touch ups… but with pigments you rarely need to touch up because they have such great staying power if you use a good emollient base. keeps your jars fresher longer too and less chance of contamination – we all want to save $ these days replacing makeup (so we can buy more of course!)

sugarcrumb Avatar

Actually an easier way to deal with it would be to transfer a small amount of pigment into a jar (MAC sells those little see thru jars or you can use others) and its really easy to use that way. you can use the lids like a little dish to mix with your mixing medium. you also reduce risk of contamination of the whole jar of pigment which will last FOREVER!

Nic15 Avatar

I have all these except for Old Gold & Pink Opal but Pink Opal is my next purchase, not sure why i haven’t gotten it sooner. It’s a staple. I love Vanilla & use it everyday practically in some form or another. I totally agree with this list. These pigments are definite must-haves!!!

Nic15 Avatar

Another fave pigment of mine would have to be Fuschia! If you mix Fuschia pigment with Deep Coral pigment (PRO) you get the most beautiful vibrant shimmer peach ever. Love it for summer!

Macaddict Avatar

I have all except:
– Teal (but want)
– Pink Opal (want)
– Golden Olive (really want)
Of all the pigments I own, my faves are:
– Naked
– Dark Soul
– Copperized
– Mauvement
– Clear Blue Sky (PRO)
– Silver (PRO)
– Deep Blue Green
– Milk
– Smoke Signal
– Pink Pearl
– True Chartreuse
– Forest Green
– Helium
– Naval Blue
– Softwash Grey
I know, that’s a lot! 😛

Hyzenthlay Avatar

Yesterday I was at MAC, and I got three pigment samples (along with the mineralized Blush in Warm Soul and the eye shadow duo in Odd Couple) . . . I was thrilled to read your list when you posted it, because all three samples that I got yesterday are on your Must Have list! I got Vanilla, Violet, and Melon, and I am definitely looking forward to using them 🙂

Kim Avatar

Can i ask a maybe stupid question – hope someone answer me.Is NW in MAC -cooler skin tone or warm? I’m guessing W is for Warm but i’m not 100% sure.Thank you

Roxanne Avatar

Hey Kim,

NW are for cooler-toned skins in MAC language.
It means that you have a beige/pink undertone vs. a yellow undertone which is classified as an NC.

Hope this helps 🙂

Maren Avatar

All the mentioned pigments I have in fullsize, I LOVE them so much. I would add Pink Bronze to the list and Chartreuse is my favorite PRO-pigment.

mlou Avatar

My favs of current line:
Golden Olive

Other favs out of my MAC collex:
Subtle -great go to shade for me
French Violet
Viz A Violet
Naval Blue
Blue Storm
Emerald Green
Golder’s Green
Gilded Green
Antique Green (now Pro only from 2008 rushmetals)
Blonde’s Gold (same as above)

Natalie Avatar

I have most of Pigments, but the ones that I use all the time are Gold Dusk (so versatile), Naked, Pink Opal and Your Ladyship. I also love all Overrich pigments, especially Blonde’s Gold, Museum Bronze and Mega Rich!

shonn Avatar

I only have a few full sized pigments, but I own probably 30 samples. My fav’s are violet, fairylite, helium(for my lips), golder’s green, white frost. Really all the purples and violets and all the greens are favorites. And I love all the reflects glitters. I get my samples from the body needs. Any other good sites?

Julie DK Avatar

My current faves are:
Apricot Pink
Violet (Gret together, check it out)
Cornflower (only as liner, since it gets messy)
Copperized (stunning dark olive green)
Blue (rebel rock)
White Gold (totally underrated and forgotten)
Emerald Green (original, not reformulated)
Coco Beach
(I have 73 in total, so it is very hard to narrow it down)

sugarcrumb Avatar

I have Violet, Teal, Golden Olive, Mutiny, Little Darlings in Warm (Xmas 2008; which came with Melon and others) Deep Blue Green, Dark Soul and Quick Frost. Quick Frost is a fantastic pigment cos its got a really beautiful gold shimmer; i mixed up a little of Dark Soul with Quick Frost and i got a beautiful shimmery dark grey that’s perrrfect for smoky eyes.

My MAC store does not carry that many pigments that are bright colours =(

Haley Avatar

i love vanilla, rose, circa plum, and antique green! also love naked, chocolate brown, violet, forest green, steel blue, smoke signal, nocturnal plum, and cornflower!!

Katie Avatar

My favorites are non-pro pigments are Melon, Copper Sparkle, Kitchmas, Old Gold, Pink Bronze, Tan, Teal, and Vanilla! My favorite pigment EVER is Lovely Lily! So glad I have a ton left!

veew1983 Avatar

rose gold pigment from mac is a favourite of mine, but they discontinued it at pro. is there a dupe for it by anyone do you know??

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