MAC Violet FX Hyper Real Foundation ($31.00 for 1.00 fl. oz.) is a pale lavender with a cool, pink pearl sheen. It had semi-sheer, buildable pigmentation, so it had a subtle, violet sheen on bare skin when applied all-over and layered underneath foundation but could still be worn as a standalone highlighter on the high points of the face and be visible. The liquid highlighter’s consistency was lightweight, thin, and watery with some slip, which helped it adhere well to bare skin without breaking up my foundation. It sat well on bare skin or dabbed on top of liquid foundation, as it had a natural sheen that wasn’t overtly shimmer. It wore well for nine hours on me before fading slightly.
- Wet 'n' Wild Halographic (P, $5.99) is more shimmery (95% similar).
- OFRA Cloud 9 (LE, $29.00) is more shimmery (90% similar).
- Pat McGrath Iridescent Pink 003 (LE, $25.00) is more shimmery, more pigmented (90% similar).
- Colour Pop Hippo (P, $8.00) is more shimmery, more pigmented (90% similar).
- Jouer Celestial (LE, $24.00) is more shimmery, more pigmented, warmer (90% similar).
- Laura Mercier Obsession (LE, $45.00) is more shimmery, darker, warmer (90% similar).
- NYX Lavender Steel (P, $7.99) is more shimmery, more pigmented (90% similar).
- Morphe Stardust (P, $14.00) is more shimmery (90% similar).
- MAC Cold Comfort (LE, $33.00) is cooler (90% similar).
- Bite Beauty Blush Pearl (P, $24.00) is more shimmery (90% similar).
$31.00/1 oz. - $31.00 Per Ounce
The formula is supposed to be a "weightless liquid highlighter" that has a "refined high-pearl finish" that wears for "eight hours." It can be "layer[ed] under foundation" or applied "over foundation as a highlighter." The consistency was smooth, thin, and had a touch of slip to keep it from feeling like water but was still easily mixed into foundation and moisturizer, applied on its own all-over the skin (like a primer), or dabbed on top of high points of the face to highlight. The latter I liked using fingertips or putting a touch on the back of my hand and swirling a synthetic brush in, then tapping onto the high points and using the edge of the bristles to diffuse the highlighter onto my skin.
It had semi-sheer, buildable coverage, depending on how much was used and how it was applied. It added noticeable luminosity when layered under foundation or mixed with foundation (assuming one did not layer a full coverage, matte formula on top!). They had a very skin-like luminosity--natural, glowing, but not overtly shimmery and definitely didn't emphasize my skin's natural texture. The formula dried down in 10-15 seconds and stayed on well for eight to nine hours on me (when worn as a standalone highlighter).
Browse all of our MAC Hyper Real Foundation swatches.