MAC Wash & Dry Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powders Reviews, Photos, Swatches

MAC Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powders
MAC Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powders

MAC Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder ($35.50 for 0.35 oz.) is a new product in the upcoming Wash & Dry collection. I wasn’t a fan of the Studio Sculpt Shade & Line Eyeshadows, and these aren’t winning me over, either. The texture is stiff, thin, and hardens incredibly easily; I had to jab at the pan’s surface with a metal spatula to get enough visible color for swatches. It’s this texture that is the real bane of this product, because I couldn’t get color out of this with a brush as a result. I don’t have any official descriptive information regarding the new formula, and I can only make some generalizations that it probably has the same type of technology behind it as the eyeshadows and the permanent Studio Sculpt Defining Powder. If I get more specific information, I may adjust the review (e.g. if these were intended to be ultra sheer). For now, I’m reviewing these based on the descriptions of the previously released eyeshadows and current Defining Powders and looked for these to have: “medium buildable coverage” that will “blend easily and comfortably” with a “silky and cream-like” texture.

I’m not sure if it these are limited edition or permanent (most likely limited edition), and as soon as I find out, I’ll be sure to update this post (for now, I’m marking them as limited edition).

MAC Delicates Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder ($35.50 for 0.35 oz.) is described as a “neutral deep bronze with fine gold shimmer.” It’s a muted, medium-dark brown with soft, warm undertones and a golden shimmer-sheen finish. In order get color payoff for a swatch, I had to scrape off a layer of product with a metal spatula. The surface hardened noticeably after using it three times (once to swatch, twice to apply to the face). The texture is very thin and stiff, which made it difficult to dislodge color from the pan. Applied, it doesn’t look bad, and it has a nice, satin-matte finish that doesn’t look flat but isn’t luminous, but unless you’re very fair, you’ll need to pack it on with five or six layers (I used eight just to get it to show up in photos). The powder that I did manage to apply lasted for seven hours before fading. It’s actually blendable once you get it on the brush, so it’s such a shame that it is pressed so firmly. Hourglass Luminous Bronze Light (P, $50.00) is warmer, yellower. Dolce and Gabbana Desert (P, $51.00) is more matte. Urban Decay Naked on the Run Bronzer (LE) is lighter. Too Faced Spice (LE) is more shimmery. Too Faced Chocolate Soleil (P) is more matte, cooler-toned. MAC Nude on Board (LE, $30.00) is similar. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

MAC Golden Rinse Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder ($35.50 for 0.35 oz.) is described as a “light brick reddish bronze with fine shimmer.” It’s a light-medium tan brown with subtle, warm undertones and a barely-there, satiny sheen. The texture felt smooth to the touch, but it was extremely stiff and firmly packed into the pan, so it was a challenge to grab pigment from the powder without scraping off layers or jabbing a rough brush against the surface. The powder itself, once loosened, has a very silky feel that is blendable and sits beautifully on the skin–but getting it on the skin is frustrating. With how firm the powder is, coverage is very sheer, but turned into a loose powder, it is more medium to full coverage depending on application. Applied, this shade wore well for seven hours on me. Guerlain #03 (P, $53.00) is darker. Dolce and Gabbana Desert (P, $51.00) is slightly darker. MAC Matte Bronze (LE, $70.00) is darker, matte. MAC Scone (LE, $25.00) is darker, matte. MAC Aphrodite’s Shell (LE, $33.00) is similar. See comparison swatches / compare dupes side-by-side.

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See more photos & swatches!

MAC Delicates Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
MAC Delicates Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder

MAC Delicates Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
MAC Delicates Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder

MAC Delicates Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
MAC Delicates Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder

MAC Delicates Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
MAC Delicates Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
** I had to scrape off a layer in order to get color payoff to show on my arm.

MAC Delicates Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
MAC Delicates Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder

MAC Golden Rinse Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
MAC Golden Rinse Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder

MAC Golden Rinse Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
MAC Golden Rinse Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder

MAC Golden Rinse Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
MAC Golden Rinse Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder

MAC Golden Rinse Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
MAC Golden Rinse Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder

MAC Golden Rinse Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
MAC Golden Rinse Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
** I had to scrape off a layer in order to get color payoff to show on my arm.

MAC Golden Rinse Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powder
MAC Delicates (your left) | Golden Rinse (your right) Studio Sculpt Defining Bronzing Powders

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Makeup Look

On face:
  • Guerlain Parure Gold Foundation
  • Urban Decay Naked Loose Setting Powder
On eyes:
  • MAC Permanent Press & Warm Wash Eyeshadow Trios
  • MAC Colour Matters
  • Practice Makes Perfect
  • Sudsy Eyeliners
On lips:
  • MAC Girl On Board Lipglass

About the Reviewer

Reviewer

Christine has normal-to-dry skin with areas of dryness (cheeks, nose, and under the eyes). She has a light-medium skintone with subtle, warmer yellow undertones. Her best foundation matches include: Tarte Rainforest of the Sea in Light-Medium Neutral (best match), Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup in Desert Beige 2N1, Giorgio Armani Maestro Glow in 4.0, Hourglass Warm Ivory Vanish Seamless Finish, Laura Mercier Candleglow Soft Luminous in Dusk, MAC NC20/NC25, Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Liquid in Y305 (140). For more matches, please read our full Foundation FAQ. For more information on our review process, please read our Review FAQ.

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72 Comments

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Well,on a positive note, you look cute and summery and my bronzer drawer will not have useless additions. πŸ™‚

This was the product I was most thinking about getting from this collection. Guess not anymore! Wow. I always say wow whenever I see an F grade from Temptalia. Anything below a B is questionable, but I can’t believe a company would release something that would warrant an F grade.

There seems to be a big divide on the reviews of the regular Defining Powder (that’s permanent) – 1 star or 5 star – and the 1-star reviews had similar texture issues it seems like πŸ™

I like that lipglass on you~ Delicates is a good description of that bronzer and while I think scraping a layer of product off to get payoff is unacceptable, the colour and subtlety of the product is really quite beautiful. I wouldn’t buy this product, but at least it’s not loud and saturated and fake looking..and worst of all..orange. Get the texture right and it would be such a winner IMO.

I’ve just hit pan on Aphrodite’s Shell from last year which has been my go to bronzer over the past year. I was hoping Golden Rinse would be similar, and though it seems it is I don’t think I can buy something that got an F.

They should be embarrassed UGH…On another note, Can you believe i have been going crazy looking for the perfect emerald green eyeshadow and I see you actually created it once upon a time? I know I’m late and I’m DYING to get that shade!

I’m not a bronzer person so these wouldn’t be on my list, however, other products in the Wash & Dry collection are. I hope the quality is better in the rest of the collection than these two

Oh dang…. Hm. I actually LIKE the swatch of Golden Rinse because it’s sheer but even. I’m very fair and bronzers are always too strong on me. Do you think I could make this work with a dense angle brush, or like would a buffing brush loosen it up? Or you think it’s not even worth it for anyone?

I could only get a really scratchy brush to work on it initially, but after that, the surface is rock-like and I had to scrape off layers. If you’ve ever seen a powder product tester that crusts/hardens over because of all the oils from people fingers? it’s like that, but it was just the minor amount of oil you naturally get from your face to your powder etc. Most powders can take it, but this one had trouble with it. I guess if the color is one you don’t feel you can replicate, then maybe you could turn it into a loose powder? But I don’t think you’ll get the sheer application you want out of it – once it gets loosened, it’s more medium coverage (since it is easier to get a lot of product onto the brush, though it depends on how much you’ve loosened).

Thanks for explaining :). I think I will look at The Body Shop, they have some bronzers that are designed for fair skin. Haven’t bought makeup there in like 15 years!

I’ve noticed that certain powders are like that — they just grab any trace of oil from your brush and hold on for dear life. My original NYX powder blush in Taupe was like that, and I’ve had a few other blushes that would get that inexplicable shiny hard surface. I wonder what makes some powders like that. I mean, I’m applying makeup right after I was my face, there’s hardly any oil to transfer.

Ha! Given my earlier complaining, these actually sound EXACTLY like what I’d like. Something I can use maybe with a poky duo fiber brush to give me ultra sheer bronzer fabulousness on my barely yellow toned pastiest white skin.

I wanted both ! Seriously, I was so excited for this collection, I wanted everything, but there’s more and more things I’m going to skip ! I’ll end up with only the highlighter and a blush.

Oh no! This is terrible. From the reviews, sounds like QC issues with different batches. So basically, you would need to drop this on a tile floor, have it shatter into a thousand pieces to get a loose powder to make it work…

OOOOH EMMMM GEEEE! They need to slow down, this is very disappointing, they are really giving themselves a bad rep. There are too many other brands making excellent products, how long are they going to rely on their past performances.

Oh wow! What a surprise! I bought Delicates 2 weeks ago and have been using it every day since I received it and I usually don’t like bronzers at all. Actually it’s the first bronzer I really love and already bought a backup! It swatches super nicely, I use a regular MAC Blush brush for it. Shows up well, blends easily and it stays in place for 14 hours (I have combination/oily skin) which rarely ever happens. Maybe some production issues?

Best
Franzi

Wow. You know, I think the most frustrating thing would be that the actual powder seems to be decent quality but it’s so ridiculously difficult to use! We appreciate your perseverence!

Oh wow! I’ve actually experienced the same problem with my Studio Sculpt Powder in Light. The surface hardens really easily to the point where I have to check if my brush is actually picking up anything before I use it everyday. Glad it’s not because I’ve been using it wrongly or anything!

I bought Golden Rinse and I have absolutly no problems O.o Its easy to use and look really great on pale skin πŸ˜€

Is it just me or does MAC release Refined Golden in a lot of its LE collections?
It’s getting to be a NARS Laguna / Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Bronzer ‘situation’.

I always want to see the mangled products after reviews where you have to scrape, poke or smash LOL!!! I am disappointed – Delicates was on my birthday wishlist.

Just to give my two cents…I bought this today but I was not planning on it after seeing your review. The thing is, I really love the sheen and sheerness this gives and I also noticed mine has a decent pigmentation as well (I can easily get the intensity of your swatches from mine)…All in all, I think this might be holy grail for me, so if someone likes sheerer and buildable products, then this might be for them.

Happy to hear it, Marikuska! I hope the surface stays good for you πŸ™‚ Mine got harder with each use! πŸ™

Hi, What brush are you using. The MAC artist suggested a 109 brush but I read that it sheds a lot, so am looking for alternatives. I’m trying out different brushes in my collection, like Charlotte Tilbury’s define & sculpt brush but the MAC bronzer is too hard for this brush and I can’t afford to wreck it…it’s beautiful!

Thanks for any advice.

Tracey

Delicates if you had to have one from this formula, but I don’t recommend the formula (just like to be clear!).

I wonder if you had a dud one. Because I picked delicates up when it was released in the UK last week, and mine is about the same colour you got on you arm with one swatch but i didn’t have to scrape the top layer off.
And mine doesn’t feel dry at all!
So hopefully if any of you buy this, you get a good one =)

Have you used it often since getting it? After about four or five uses, mine is completely rock hard – it just got harder and harder. I had the same issues with their eyeshadows and pressed powder in the same line!

I’ve used it 4 times! and as of yet it hasn’t got rock hard. Hoping it doesn’t!
Maybe it is a bad formula and I was just lucky then! Shame really, could’ve been a good concept

Thank you!
Would also like to say how much I love your website, this was my first comment after stalking for about 3 years! haha. I usually won’t buy a mac product until I’ve read your review. For some reason the UK got this collection first for once, and before you reviewed.

πŸ™‚ Thank you for taking the comment! And it is really good to hear that some people are having good experiences with the bronzers as well – and I hope mine is a one-off! I love the color/finish once it is on!

xoxo

Hello Christine, I bought Golden Rinse and didn’t have the same problem as you…I am quite happy with it, it is not hard to take the coulour from the pan, and for me (I am very fair) the pigmentation is very fine.
Maybe the product you got wasn’t a good one ? …
PS = I love your website and folow you for many years now.

Thank you Christine to have answered me ! I I thought about this after I wrote the post. Maybe it depends the brush you use to take the product. With Sephora bronzer brush 43 it is ok. With a fluffy blush brush I don’t think it works well because the product is not powdery.
Have a nice day, and thank you again to have ansered me !

I just received Delicates today and really love it! I had no trouble getting product onto my brush and was actually relieved that it is very buildable. I am fair (NW15/20) and was able to easily control just how much I wanted to apply without there being too much product on the brush. I’ve never used a bronzer before and didn’t want to dump a ton of product onto my face with the first application.

I can see that this would not be an ideal product for someone with a darker complexion. If you are fair and it is your first foray into bronzers, it would be worth a try!

I Just purchased Dedicates on Sunday and i’ve worn it to work the last two days and its perfect. I really like it, its not something that you have to be super careful with. Its not too dark and gives just a subtle look for when i’m in the office. That was kind of what i was hoping for lol. My Chocolate Soleil is much too dark for work.

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