MAC Cosmetics - Smoke Signals Collection Review

Overall, I really enjoyed the cool smoky eye quad compared to the warmer one, and I definitely see Burnin’ being a fall favorite. Vampy, dramatic lips are in, and Burnin’ leaves nothing to be desired. Raven is going to make an excellent colored liner to make my eyes pop. I also love the color of Smoke Signal pigment, but we’ll have to see how real application goes, since matte or matte-like pigments and I are not always compatible.

Gentle Fume Eyes
Rondelle has come out before, and Carbon is part of the permanent ilne, but this is such a great combination of shadows to make a truly perfect smokey eye. I found myself instantly gravitating towards this cooler palette compared to the warmer quad also launched. Rondelle is quite shimmery, though, and even though it has come out before, I feel like they aren’t the same, but I never owned the original. Gentle Fume reminds me a bit of Print eyeshadow, though.

Smoking Eyes
Unlike the cooler quad, Next To Nothing is a great highlighter color (Rondelle is a bit too shimmery for most people’s tastes for highlighters). I have to tell you, I think MAC needs to come up with a new matte brown to put in their quads, because I feel like Showstopper shows up in all of their pre-made quads these days! I really liked Smoking, because it’s a matte black base with gold shimmer, so pretty. Satin Taupe (I believe this is a repromote, as well) has great payoff, and it’s a nice color if you don’t already have it.

Barely Lit: Super, super sheer. Even with a bit of foundation on my lips, I couldn’t really get the color to grab on. The texture was lovely, though, as it is a lustre, just far too sheer for me to use personally. Maybe on paler lips!
Brew: This sounds so familiar, so I’m not sure if this has come out before or not, but it’s a great neutral lip color and a touch sheer since it is also a lustre formulation.
Burnin’: If you want a vampy lip, this is the perfect lipstick to do it. Amplified texture (my favorite) and awesome color pay off in such a deep burgundy/wine color.
Mellow Flame: I can see this color be more popular with warmer skintones, as it is a bit brown and warm.
Sparks Can Fly: Lovely little pink lipstick with lots of shimmer, but this isn’t a must-have.

Bare Truth: Opaque beige-brown with lots of pink shimmer, real glossy and smooth.
Bizaarish: Imagine how dark and vampy you can make Burnin’ lipstick look by layering this over it! Very dark and shimmery.
Illicit: I thought this wuold be sheer, but when I tested it, it was quite opaque. A pale pink with a touch of beige in it, making it a great neutral lipglass.
Soft & Slow: A medium pink lipglass, but it isn’t over the top in brightness, so I really like that about it. It’s not a Barbie pink or anything of that sort, but it isn’t dull or pale either.

Kohl Power
Orpheus: A lovely smooth, deep olive-green kind of color, which would make a great liner even by itself.
Raven: The color is kind of like the Smoke Signal pigment, only a bit shimmery and in kohl form.

Ablaze: A deeper matte (or almost matte) rose blush, a bit brownish, and I have a feeling this won’t be a huge hit for a lot of ladies. It just seems like it might be a hard color to wear without overdoing it.
Emote: As far as I’m concerned, I’m definitely going to try using this as a contour color for me. It is a grayish brown, with a bit of warmth, but not a whole lot.

Dark Soul: Part of the permanent consumer line of pigments, this is a shimmery almost black, semi-gray pigment with a bit of a matte feel to it (not so frosty).
Silver Fog: This pigment is part of the permanent PRO line, and it is a very, very bright silver. It looks almost wet because of how shimmery it is.
Smoke Signal: Seems like a matte pigment to me, and it is a gorgeous smoked out cranberry color. It’s a great burgundy, with a lot of coolness to it.

Nail Polishes
Wildfire: A deep purple with red shimmer, which makes it completely different than what the original color description was. I do wish it was a bit more saturated in color, a touch brighter/bolder.
Nocturnelle: This is a repromote, and it is for all things… a high gloss black creme finish polish, which is lovely, but not unique by any means.

View product photos and swatches here:

We hope you'll consider supporting Temptalia by shopping through our links below. Thanks!
We hope you'll consider supporting Temptalia by shopping through our links below. Thanks!


Comments that do not adhere to our comment policy may be removed. Discussion and debate are highly encouraged but we expect community members to participate respectfully. Please keep discussion on-topic, and if you have general feedback, a product review request, an off-topic question, or need technical support, please contact us!

Please help us streamline the comments' section and be more efficient: double-check the post above for more basic information like pricing, availability, and so on to make sure your question wasn't answered already. Comments alerting us to typos or small errors in the post are appreciated (!) but will typically be removed after errors are fixed (unless a response is needed).

We appreciate enthusiasm for new releases but ask readers to please hold questions regarding if/when a review will be posted as we can't commit to or guarantee product reviews. We don't want to set expectations and then disappoint readers as even products that are swatched don't always end up being reviewed due to time constraints and changes in priorities! Thank you for understanding!

Comments on this post are closed.
We hope you'll consider supporting Temptalia by shopping through our links below. Thanks!

You are correct about Brew, I have it. Glad you brought it up-I hate when I accidentally buy something I already own :/ Love your reviews!

That’s what I thought! Haha, me too 🙂 Luckily my makeup memory is awesome (unlike my academic one…), so it doesn’t happen very often.



Yup, Brew is a color that has been out before, in the High Tea collection from ’04.

And Satin Taupe is a repromote of a color already in the Perm line.

Love your blog!

Hi Christine!

Thanks so much for the review, VERY HELPFUL!

Just wondering, is it me or does ablaze feel and look like a matte blush instead of a frost one? Does you see the shimmer/frost in it at all?

What lipliner would you recommend to go with burnin? (It’s such a sexy fall color!) and is there anything in the perm line that’s similar to mellow flame?
Thanks hun!

No problem, Meme!!

Oh, man, it feels like a matte blush to me, LOL. There might be a TINGE of shimmer, but you have to look closely.

Maybe Velvetella or Plum Side cremestick liners (I prefer these over the other pencils).

Jist or Spirit, but I’m not really sure. I haven’t played much with that lipstick color family, actually!

Wish I could buy the eyeshadows individually (or mix and match the quads) instead coz I have Showstopper, Rondelle, Carbon and Satin Taupe already.

The Smoke Signal pigment sounds really pretty and I can’t wait to get my hands on it! Haven’t dealt with any matte pigments yet and I hope this one will look pretty on me (I’m scared that dark matte pigments will look like dirt on me).

That would be a really good idea, and I know others feel the same way. You need to find a friend who loves MAC and wants what you don’t, depot and split the shadows 😀 LOL.

It should look gorgeous on you, no fears!

Hey Christine!

I just wanted to say that I love your site and that this is one of the best reviews of the Smoke Signals Collection I’ve come across! Thanks for being so detailed and for taking amazing pictures as well. 🙂 Can’t wait to see some looks you pull together too! Kee up the great work! 😀

Hey Noel! Thank you so much 😀 I’m happy to help, and I know that no review is complete without details and pictures!

We try to approve comments within 24 hours (and reply to them within 72 hours) but can sometimes get behind and appreciate your patience! 🙂 If you have general feedback, product review requests, off-topic questions, or need technical support, please contact us directly. Thank you for your patience!