I went in the MAC store other day to grab a concealer, but also walked out with a brow mascara in tow. Well, I was overdue for a new one anyway! I was super curious about the limited edition MAC Pro Longwear Waterproof Brow Set (P1,000), part of the Waterproof Brow Collection Summer 2014, so I chose this instead of the regular one.
I originally wanted the color that's similar to Girl Boy, a golden blonde, but since most of the shades were already out of stock I went home with Quiet Brunette. Boy am I glad! It's a taupey brown shade with a reddish tint to it, just the perfect color for my dark hair. I think this is the first EVER brow mascara I've tried that doesn't require me to layer it with other colors. This is pigmented enough that I can just wear it straight from the tube, plus the color suits my hair and complexion.
The wand is now small and conical so it's easier to coat eyebrow hairs without making a mess. Staying power is excellent - I've sweated quite a bit while wearing this, but it didn't fade or smudge at all!
MAC Philippines has several exciting new releases, and as usual I'm here to share everything I know about them! ;) For Spring, check out A Fantasy Of Flowers - a dreamy, ultra-feminine collection of fresh shades that'll brighten up your face. Think lots of pinks and iridescent textures! (Aren't the promo images so inspiring?)
I know some of you gals are shy to go up to the MAC counter to ask, so here's the full list of products, descriptions, and prices for your reference. Enjoy!
The past week has been more hectic than usual. I organized and executed events for two different clients so I am just dead tired right now. I just wanna lie down and not get up until next week! I'm not saying I don't like my job, it's just that it's not always as glamorous as it might sound. It involves a lot of literal leg work and generous trading of limited social currency.
At the end of the day, however, I live for the feeling of giving my best work to my clients and friends in the industry.
Anyway, I thought I'd keep today's post chill by sharing with you some of the things I'm loving at the moment. I made it a point to include only items I haven't mentioned here yet! I'm probably doing a full review on them next time, but for now here are some of the reasons I pick up these beauties.
Etude House Don't Worry I'm On Your Side Lip Balm. I've actually had this since September last year and I use it ALL THE FREAKIN' TIME. Why I haven't written about it yet, I don't know. But here it is now. :P This is a moisturizing balm that leaves a pretty and long-wearing salmon pink stain on the lips. It's what I used during autumn in Tokyo because the other lippies I brought were just not hydrating enough!
I'd be lying if I said that everyday is a mega hyper inspiring blogging day. Sometimes I just really want to get work out of the way and/or attend to my other hobbies. Sometimes I don't feel like adding yet another beauty product review to the hundreds that this website already contains. I mean did you even notice that I've already written 2,210 posts in the last six years? I don't but sometimes I do notice.
Obviously I can't blog forever. Maybe I'll stop when I reach 5,000 and finally, truly feel that I've said all I can possibly say about the beauty industry. That's still some time in the future though! When I don't feel inspired, I try to be consistent instead. Inspiration is awesome to have but it won't sustain me and take me all the way to the top. Consistency, while dull and repetitive, is reliable. No one can't take it away from me except me.
Anyhoo, we're back to MAC Week. I have here the Prep + Prime Fortified Skin Enhancer SPF35 PA+++ (P1,450), a tinted sunscreen that has illuminating properties. This was a CC cream before CC creams were born. It's quite sheer but it brightens my complexion wonderfully!
This isn't a primer in the sense that it makes makeup stay on longer. It's really designed to correct complexions with certain issues like redness (Neutralize is recommended, a yellow), dullness (Adjust, a peach), and sallowness/yellowness (Illuminate, a lavender cream). I have Neutralize here and true enough it can tone down redness and keep my skin bright while at it.
Mineral makeup used to be a messy affair - well, I suppose it still is if you like the loose formulas (I do). But if you're rushed for time but still like the flawless, glowy finish that only mineral powders can provide, go for pressed! There are lots of great ones available now. One of them, an oldie but a goodie, is the MAC Mineralize Skinfinish Natural (P1,700+).
Coverage and finish. The Mineralize Skinfinish offers sheer to medium buildable coverage that has a slight sheen to it. It could be a setting or finishing powder due to the glowy effect, but it can also be used as a daily base if you don't need a lot of coverage.
This has an extremely lightweight formula that feels like nothing on the face! It also doesn't cake due to the thin texture, yes, even when layered heavily.
Matte and satin are forever but there's a renewed love for shiny lips in 2014. Glossy, luscious colors are all the rage as new formulas come out that challenge the stereotype. The new MAC Huggable Lipcolour (P1,150) is one such formula. It promises six whole hours of wear while moisturizing your lips at the same time. Too good to be true? Nope! It's for real alright.
The Huggable Lipcolour is a cross between the Sheen Supreme and the Pro Longwear. It's shinier than Sheen Supreme, but it has the staying power of the Pro Longwear. It hugs my lips tightly and is loathe to let go even when I eat or drink!
This is limited edition! The Huggable Lipcolour comes in a gunmetal tube, as opposed to the usual black MAC packaging.
Eight hours is the longest I've worn this lipstick. At the end of it, there was still a glossy color on my lips. Seriously. It starts fading by the 5th hour but it never really goes away until I take it off. Even though it's long-wearing, it's moisturizing enough by itself. I can skip lip balm and my lips would feel alright!
Noel, a MAC Makeup Artist, applying the new lipstick on me
There is only so much you can learn from YouTube and beauty blogs. It's better to stand in front of a true artist and see how he does his fabulous tricks up close! That's why I always try to attend events where brands bring their own international makeup artists. There's always a new technique to see, a new style to absorb. I may not have formal training but I'm fortunate enough to be invited to witness these masters at work.
Last Saturday, I did just that. Gregory Arlt, the Director of Makeup Artistry for MAC Cosmetics, came to visit the Philippines to demonstrate new techniques and products. Gregory does the makeup of Dita Von Teese, Gwen Stefani, and Katy Perry to name a few. He's done covers, campaigns, and shows. I loved watching him since he was so eloquent and entertaining!
He showed us a simple, everyday look and a more glamorous yet understated evening look. You may have heard much of the advice if you already know the basics of makeup, but he also imparted a few lesser-known gems that I think would help all of us improve our daily makeup routine. Here they are!
Tip #1: Moisturize, prime, and spritz. What you wear under your makeup is just as important as what’s on top. Remember to use a brightening moisturizer, a smoothing primer, and a lip conditioner before you put on anything else. Spritz something like the MAC Fix+ to liven up your skin and plump it up. Your moisturizer and primer will seal that water in for better hydration throughout the day.
Tip #2: Use a flat foundation brush to apply heavy coverage powder foundation. You think you can only use THAT for liquid foundation? Think again! If you use powder foundation like the MAC Studio Fix, apply it with a paddle brush to get a finer, more precise coverage. We tend to slather it on with sponges and dense powder brushes, I know, which gets us a mask-like finish. Build it up patiently with a synthetic flat brush, like what Gregory did here.
I tried this at home with a loose foundation and it works!
MAC's latest collection brings the holidays to a fever pitch - of the disco persuasion. (I thought about this line for one whole day, because I'll be damned if I didn't put "disco" and "fever" in my opening sentence.)
Anyway! Divine Night is MAC's flagship collection this season, dominated by rich shades of gold, bronze, plum, and pink champagne. The look is composed of a fierce darkened eye, stark contour, and a dirty plum lip - a very modern discotheque vibe. Check out the photos from the super fun launch that happened last week!
Divine ladies: Ria Bolivar, Catriona Grey, Jessica Yang, and Ella Pap
A matte, neutral brown eyeshadow can do more than just shade your eyes - it can also perform well as eyebrow makeup. You're basically paying once for two items! How's that for a good deal?
One of my favorite eyebrow powders is the MAC Espresso Eyeshadow (P1,000). This single eyeshadow is a neutral, mid-brown that suits most skintones, making it famous with makeup artists as a brow color. I actually like it better on my eyebrows than on my lids; it sticks to the skin so well, it can be a tad difficult to spread.
It lasts on my eyebrows all day. It's great for oily skin, where other more emollient products seem to break down faster. It's also fairly easy to work with as long as you have a stiff eyebrow brush like this one from Charm.
I find that Esperesso isn't intense on the first layer so you can get more control in terms of pigmentation.
I have a love/hate relationship with SM Aura. I hate that the food choices are limited (as are seats during the weekend) and that the cinemas are almost always full. Seriously what's the point of having an IMAX theater near me when it's fully booked most of the time? I love the SM Store - so many well-curated items in there - but it's also limited.
Still, the shopping at SM Aura blows High Street, Serendra, and Market! Market! out of the water. Before I would need to go to Makati to shop at stores like Forever 21, Uniqlo, Miss Selfridge, and Bershka. Now all that is 10 minutes away! I also love Suite Blanco (it's like a much cheaper Zara) and L'Indochine.
Aside from clothes though, beauty shopping at SM Aura is also leveling up. The SM Beauty and Watsons there have excellent drugstore selections, but I love that MAC is also now available in the mall.
It's a huuuuge store, bigger than the one in Rockwell I think. It's all gleaming black surfaces and bright lights, as if you're in a real studio. The latest collections are also available there - check out these palettes!
The MAC Illustrated Ccllection by Rebecca Moses features limited edition kits and palettes. The palette containing the blush, four eyeshadows, and two lip colors retail for about P3,000. Not bad!
Here are more photos from the event!
Sugar, spice, and everything nice would be the best words to describe MAC's latest collection: Baking Beauties! I like that it's not overly saccharine with the pink, cream, and mint; the dark lipstick and luscious new Paint Pot shades are an interesting contrast to what could've been a bland sweets-inspired collection.
I managed to attend the launch of this collection in Glorietta two Sundays ago, so I have some pictures of the demo! (Don't worry, the rest of the branches only had BB last weekend). The makeup artist, Noel, did the Baking Beauties look on the model of the day. That would be dramatic chocolate eyes and a pale pink lip, same as the promo images.
Bare faced and ready to go
The Paint Pot in Eclair was applied all over the lid, almost up to the browbone.
This review is part of a series: the Blush Week at Project Vanity. Read my first two blush posts (if you haven't yet)! ;)
The MAC Dollymix Blush (~P1,300) is a hot pink shade with very fine silver and gold shimmer - intimidating in the pan, but utterly lovely on the cheeks. It's is one of the brand's most famous shades, with a whopping 4.4/5 rating at Makeupalley. I can see why!
It's scary off the bat, but once you apply it you won't see much of that Barbie pink intensity or shimmer on your skin. This blush actually looks like a darling medium pink with a satin finish when worn. I guess I better show you!
I've been to a lot of parties and even throw some (modest ones) myself, but nobody - and I mean nobody - does parties like MAC. A couple of weeks ago I had the chance to attend the MAC Archie's Girls collection launch. In keeping with the well-loved comics' setting, the Mall of Asia activity center was transformed into a 50's paradise. There were sock hop dancers, vintage-y music, a jukebox, and a kissing booth. The food was right on theme as well with soda floats, burgers and fries, and mini desserts!
But of course the real star of the event was the eternal love triangle - Archie and his girls, Betty and Veronica. MAC released the Archie's Girls collection with two sub-categories. Betty had light, girl-next-door makeup, whereas Veronica had daring and vampy colors fit for boyfriend stealin'.
The MAC Brow Set in Girl Boy is one of those must-have things we always hear about. I've been meaning to try it for the longest time but, well, other amazing eyebrow products always crop up. Good thing Lannel Boutique sent me a tube some weeks ago! Here's what I think about this cult favorite.
Girl Boy is a dark blonde shade with a subtle golden shimmer. The gold might look weird at first, but it does give brows such a lovely dimensional look.
What I love about the product
- It's a nice topper for dark eyebrows - it sort of highlights the hair and gives it more depth and lushness. If you're light-haired and/or have extremely dark brows then this is okay to use by itself; if you have sparse brows, make sure to use eyebrow color underneath it first.
- Doesn't smudge or fade during the day.
How do you feel about face mists? I don't use them all the time but they're nice to have around. Say, you over-applied your foundation or powder and would like to take the thickness down a notch - spray some mist on your face. You want to intensify your eyeshadow or powder liner? Mist your brush before dipping it in the color. You want to moisturize your face in the middle of the day without actually removing all your makeup? Mist up! See I told you it's handy. ;)
Now there's an argument to be made for simply filling up an atomizer spray bottle with water. But I swear it's not the same. Proper face mists - the one you buy off the shelves for a price that sounds ridiculous for what is basically bottled water - is better than a DIY attempt. That's not to say that a DIY mist is not any good, I'm sure it will work fine, but it's not going to be quite as nice as a cosmetic mist.
The MAC Mineralized Charged Water is water infused with diamond powder (supposedly) and a nice citrus tea scent. It delivers a very fine spray to distribute the water evenly all over the face.
I'm building my MAC makeup stash and would like to ask you Liz as well as you guys which MAC products are your top faves. Foundation, concealer, powder, blushes and lipsticks? I have medium, combination- oily skin. Dyed my hair caramel brown with medium blonde hi-lites. Kinda like Sophia Vergara. :) Im NC 40 Studio sculpt foundie, NW 20 in concealer. This kind of puzzles me...Hope you can share your MAC stash with me. Thanks in advance! - Jen
Hi Jen! I love MAC, but I wouldn't call myself a connoiseur or a collector. I am missing some key products and colors in my collection because I don't need them yet, what with all the makeup I already have! You should definitely ask Sophie, Brigitte, and Phoebe about their MAC stash, they're avid fans.
That said, my modest collection contains pieces that I cannot live without (figuratively that is). Some of them are gifts, some I bought myself. MAC makes fantastic colors, but their neutral makeup are some of the best out there. They flatter my NC35 skintone very well; I wear them when I want to look as beautiful as I can make myself. :P You'll notice I don't have a MAC foundation. I bought one before but I broke out so I didn't try it again. Maybe I should? I think they've reformulated.
Anyway, here goes!
You know that feeling of going back to an old love, then finding out (with the utmost delight) that it's even better than you remember it? That's what I felt when I dipped into the MAC Fluidline in Dipdown (P1,100). The Fluidline was my first ever high-end eyeliner and I loved it so much that I used it for almost two years. I kept it for three years just for the nostalgia, and believe it or not, it was still creamy and usable until the day I threw it away.
I received a fluidline in a MAC event that I attended a couple of months ago. I didn't want to use it since I have got quite a few brown eyeliners on rotation already, but I was curious to see if this gel eyeliner is as good as I thought it was. It is!
This is the best gel eyeliner I've tried, hands down. If you thought your drugstore gel eyeliner was creamy, the Fluidline is waaaaay creamier than you'd think possible.