From my observation as an ardent M·A·C user, the brand is often late to the party when it comes to following beauty trends. Or rather, they simply do not see the point in rushing into conformity and churning out low-quality products that would potentially tarnish their good reputation. But more often than not, you can be sure it’s worth the wait. Hence, when M·A·C finally announced that they were bringing out their own line of liquid lipsticks (literally years after every makeup brand had already done so), I had my hopes up and was eagerly awaiting their launch in January last year.
M·A·C Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour‘s debut saw the introduction of 15 robustly saturated colours in a liquid-suede finish (basically what you would expect from your Retro Matte lipsticks but in liquid form) packed in an all-black box and encased in a long clear plastic tube screw-capped with M·A·C’s trademark black dome-like lid. Each tube contains 5 ml / 0.17 fl oz of vanilla-scented product and comes with a fluffy yet flat applicator for better precision and control.
To date, there are already 31 shades in this range and most of them – including the three below – are permanent.
#1 To Matte With Love
To Matte With Love is a cool fuchsia pink described by M·A·C as a bright raspberry. It glides across the lips without skipping or tugging and upon application, the lipstick dries down almost instantly, transforming an initially creamy texture into a budge-free velvety (as opposed to a powdery) and matte finish. The product is so intensely pigmented and opaque, it fills the lips entirely with just one swipe. It has an even consistency which makes it easier to define the lip shape. On top of that, it does not crack when I move my lips (at least for the first few hours of wear), even without any form of lip nourishment. It is extremely long-lasting but feels drying on the lips and will start flaking and peeling the moment it comes in contact with grease.
I vaguely remember this as an online-exclusive product (which was why I bought it because I wouldn’t have gotten a shade that’s so not me) but it doesn’t seem to be the case. No regrets, though. To Matte With Love is gorgeous even though I already have something quite similar 😭
#2 Dance With Me
Dance With Me is a cool darkened red described by M·A·C as a deep cranberry red. It has a more watered-down consistency even though on the whole it still applies somewhat thick, creamy and with some tugging. It needs just one swipe to fill the lips with a reasonably opaque wash of colour.
However, it doesn’t build well especially when it is still in the wet stage as the initial layer tends to shift around with the movement of the applicator and thereafter, leave an uneven and blotchy appearance. It dries down completely to a slightly velvety and matte finish (with a rubbery texture which made my lips feel synthetic 😭), albeit in a longer time (about 2 minutes). But my lips feel increasingly constricted as traces of moisture wear off from the lipstick every millisecond. The dried-down finish also highlights every crinkle and crevice and accentuates flaws to some extent. But no doubt, it is very long-lasting. This is relatively difficult to remove as it stains the lips.
#3 High Drama
High Drama is a deep burgundy purple described by M·A·C as a deep dark plum. It has a thin and streaky consistency and hence would require at least two passes to completely fill the lips. It lends a sheer smear of colour at the first swipe and has very limited buildability even though it is rather pigmented. It seems like the more layers I apply, the patchier (marked by very noticeable dark spots) it becomes. It feels like it has the tendency to bleed (which it sorta did around the edges).
This shade yields a satiny texture with subtle sheen which gives the impression of hydration when in fact, it is extremely drying. The heavy and hardening sensation on the lips while wearing High Drama makes the experience uncomfortable. Moreover, the product bunches and is distributed unevenly across the lips, causing them to look wrinkly and rough. It starts cracking and becoming flaky after three hours of wear without eating or drinking. Needless to say, its longevity would be a lot shorter when it comes into contact with anything (more particularly food and drink).
While there’s definitely much to work on for the darker shades, the lighter ones (more specifically To Matte With Love) seem to offer a more seamless application on top of a thicker and a more velvety consistency. But then again, these were purchased more than a year ago when they were first launched so, I don’t know, there could already be some improvements made to the formula. When in doubt, drop by any M·A·C outlet and swatch them to your heart’s content!
Thanks for reading!