REVIEW: M·A·C NICOPANDA Lipsticks in Galactic Mint, Pop Babe & Toung ‘n’ Chic

Hello everyone!

With almost every colour on the spectrum made into cosmetics, much of consumerism now boils down to the aesthetic appeal of the products. In this aspect, we can always trust M·A·C to come up with irresistibly enticing packaging design that has the ability to trick you into wanting makeup you might already have, such as those in the NICOPANDA collaboration.

M·A·C NICOPANDA

M·A·C NICOPANDA

My M·A·C NICOPANDA haul

My M·A·C NICOPANDA haul

M·A·C taking cute to the next level with a panda-theme packaging

M·A·C taking cute to the next level with a panda-theme packaging

Founded by Italian-Japanese fashion director Nicola Formichetti and his brother Andrea in 2015, NICOPANDA is a New York-based street brand best known for its edgy and playful approach to ready-to-wear and accessories, and it revolves around the panda cartoon that looks like Nicola whose bear-like chubby frame and long beard during his younger days had earned him the nickname “Nico Panda”. Despite the relatively short time the fashion line has been on the market, Nicola has, in fact, more than a decade of experience in being the creative force behind some of the world’s most influential brands, publications, and pop stars including Lady Gaga and Brooke Candy. Busier than a one armed paper hanger, he currently serves as fashion director of Uniqlo apart from managing his personal business venture.

Chose this picture of Nicola Formichetti because #dogsarelife

Chose this picture of Nicola Formichetti because #dogsarelife (source)

Launched in April, this M·A·C collection features an infusion of fresh spring colours in the form of matte lipsticks (Kawaii Party, Pink-Off, Toung ‘n’ Chic, Nico Kiss, Galactic Mint & Pop Babe), Lipglass (Sugar Coat, Dreamz, Panda Kiss & Glitter Parade), a Gleamer Face Powder, Full Face Kits (Stay Cute, Primapanda & Preppy Panda), lashes, an adornment and a brush bag, all of which come entirely in the most adorable panda-centric packaging (which, I have to admit, isn’t too practical storage-wise). But in spite of the fancy presentation, the prices of the lip products – surprisingly – remain largely the same (at least in the U.S.), so purchasing the three lipsticks below didn’t feel much of a pinch on the wallet.

Galactic Mint

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Galactic Mint (US$18.50)

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Galactic Mint (US$18.50)

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Galactic Mint

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Galactic Mint

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Galactic Mint

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Galactic Mint

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Galactic Mint

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Galactic Mint

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Galactic Mint

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Galactic Mint

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Galactic Mint

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Galactic Mint

Galactic Mint is described as a clean seafoam green with a matte finish. Moderately emollient with some slip, this bright cyan deposits a great deal of pigment (a rarity for a fluorescent shade) upon application but most of it ended up settling into my creases and putting a spotlight on the rough texture of my lips. A fairly thin coat gives an opaque but awfully chalky consistency (marked with gaps that are impossible to fill) which amplifies with additional layers, hence making it a challenge to get an even coverage out of this problematic shade without the aid of a primer and a lip brush. It is probably more suitable for creating a small portion of an ombré lip as opposed to being used as the main lip colour.

Swatch comparison for Galactic Mint

Swatch comparison for Galactic Mint

Pop Babe 

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Pop Babe (US$18.50)

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Pop Babe (US$18.50)

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Pop Babe

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Pop Babe

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Pop Babe

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Pop Babe

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Pop Babe

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Pop Babe

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Pop Babe

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Pop Babe

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Pop Babe

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Pop Babe

Pop Babe described as a bright clean pink with a matte finish. The only sold-out lipstick shade from this collection online, this non-drying cool-toned fuchsia applies easily while providing an intense and opaque colour payoff with a subtle shine in a single swipe. The texture is lightweight enough to comfortably and evenly conceal all the creasing and cracking going on. As someone who isn’t too big on vibrant colours, I think Pop Babe is a gorgeous and versatile colour that suits most skin tones. Whether you are going for a rebellious bombshell or a quintessential girl-next-door image, this lipstick can also somehow be paired with various looks.

Swatch comparison for Pop Babe

Swatch comparison for Pop Babe

Toung ‘n’ Chic

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Toung 'n' Chic (US$18.50)

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Toung ‘n’ Chic (US$18.50)

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Toung 'n' Chic

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Toung ‘n’ Chic

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Toung 'n' Chic

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Toung ‘n’ Chic

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Toung 'n' Chic

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Toung ‘n’ Chic

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Toung 'n' Chic

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Toung ‘n’ Chic

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Toung 'n' Chic

M·A·C NICOPANDA lipstick in Toung ‘n’ Chic

Toung ‘n’ Chic may be described as a deep plum with a matte finish, but this medium wine is nowhere near as drying. Gliding effortlessly on the lips without tugging or pulling, it imparts a lightly glossy sheen that could pass the lipstick off as a Satin one. Although fully opaque in one swipe, the product tends to build up on drier and uneven parts of the lips, resulting in an inconsistent texture and unsightly dark patches like those in the pictures above. It also sinks into the lip lines within the first hour of wear, further intensifying the parched condition of the lips. Hence, exfoliating the lips before applying this lipstick is a must to achieve optimal payoff from it.

Swatch comparison for Toung 'n' Chic

Swatch comparison for Toung ‘n’ Chic

Usually when a reputable brands go the extra mile to market their products in gimmicky packaging, they usually fall short in terms of quality to make up for the cost of attracting eyeballs. But I have to admit that this collection generally ticks all the right boxes. If not for space (and money) constraints, I would have gotten more shades!

What are your thoughts about this collection? Did you manage to get anything? Let me know in the comments below or take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading!

M·A·C NICOPANDA is now available on MACCosmetics.com and in all local M.A.C outlets. Enjoy up to 50% off when you purchase 3 or more items from this collection at any singapore outlet.

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REVIEW: M·A·C Viva Glam × Sia Lipstick

Hello everyone!

Makeup collections come and go in a matter of weeks, but one M·A·C collection in particular generally stays all year round. The Viva Glam line, which turns over annually with a new range of product(s), has gotten Sia as its spokesperson for the year and I am beyond thrilled – and it’s not just because she has made explaining how my last name is pronounced so much easier.

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

Having written chart-toppers for Shakira (Try Everything from the movie Zootopia), Rihanna (Diamonds) and Flo Rida (the catchy chorus for Wild Ones), among many others, the Australian singer-songwriter needs no introduction. Since lending her cathartic voice to David Guetta’s Titanium (in which she showcased her songwriting chops), Sia’s popularity has not only skyrocketed, but also disrupted her plans to solely be an all-pop songwriter for hire. Her prominence prompted her to come out of retirement from being a recording artiste to release her sixth and seventh studio albums (yes, she had already made a name for herself as a successful singer prior to this) made up mostly of rejected tracks she had written for other artistes. Proving that one man’s meat is indeed another man’s poison, her comeback spawned a couple of number-one singles including Chandelier, Cheap Thrills and The Greatest which remained as earworms in my head for a long time.

But her success did not come without setbacks. During her early years, Sia struggled with drug and alcohol addiction, was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and had even contemplated suicide while dealing with fame (which intensified when the press found out about her bisexuality). Sobering up eventually, she realised the damaging effects of fame and retreated from public view. Hence, despite being a critically-acclaimed musician now, Sia does not feel comfortable being in the limelight and would obscure her face with giant wigs, use a proxy performer and refuse to promote her material (yet was able to sell millions of copies worldwide!) to avoid a celebrity lifestyle and maintain some privacy, that is, with the exception of her partnership with PETA to help end the animal homelessness crisis.

Sia behind the wig

Sia behind the wig (source)

As an extension of her philanthropy, Sia collaborated with M·A·C on their Viva Glam campaign which finances educational programmes aimed at preventing HIV/AIDS and helping people with the disease. The product – a red lipstick – is a compatible match with the notoriously camera-shy singer who is often seen rocking her signature red pout (which I learnt today is Ruby Woo) under her bob wig.

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia (US$18.50 / S$36)

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia (US$18.50 / S$36)

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

M·A·C Viva Glam Sia

Consistent with the preceding Viva Glam lipsticks, Sia’s version features her signature emblazoned on the polished black surface of the tube. Described as a bright yellow-red with a matte finish, the lipstick delivers a vivid medium red (supposedly to mimic Ruby Woo, but more hydrating) with a soft sheen and nanoscopic gold flecks only noticeable up close when applied. With just a single swipe, it deposits a full-on lightweight layer of opaque coverage for a bold and sophisticated look without bleeding into the lip lines. It tends to skip and drag a bit across the lips owing to its slightly drying texture (typical of matte lipsticks), but it does not strip moisture off the lips over time. This lipstick is almost transfer-proof as most of it stayed put on my lips for more than 8 hours. When it did wear off, it faded to a pretty stain.

Comparing Viva Glam Sia with other popular red M·A·C lipsticks. Viva Glam Sia isn't too different from Ruby Woo, perhaps just a little warmer and definitely more moisturising

Comparing Viva Glam Sia with other popular red M·A·C lipsticks. Viva Glam Sia isn’t too different from Ruby Woo, perhaps just a little warmer and definitely more moisturising

Ruby Woo has always been one of my favourite red lipsticks but its annoying drying tendencies put me off, so knowing that Viva Glam Sia can be a substitute for it certainly earns it a few extra points. I’ve got to admit, though, that red may not be the most interesting lip colour in this day and age where every beauty brand in the market is constantly trying to differentiate itself with never-seen-before lipstick shades, but it is likely the only colour most people would associate Sia with.

What do you think of the Viva Glam lip colour this year? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below or take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading!

M·A·C Viva Glam × Sia is now available on MACCosmetics.com and in all local M.A.C outlets. Discounts are not applicable to all Viva Glam products as 100% of the proceeds of the sale are donated to the M·A·C AIDS Fund.

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REVIEW: M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Eye Shadow X4 in 70’s Sunset, Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Indian Ink/Mossy Green & Lipsticks in Apricot Gold & Nude Fudge

Hello everyone!

These days, with influential figures like Rihanna paving the way for inclusivity in the beauty world, and an extensive spectrum of hues being held up as the standard to meet for every international beauty brand deliberating over new product launches, dark-skinned people seem to have it easier when it comes to makeup selection. But instead of pushing out tens of similar products to please everyone (especially people of colour) which makes little sense logistically, M·A·C decides to partner with American-Indian Padma Lakshmi on a collection that is mainly dedicated to brown skin. And quite frankly, I’ve never encountered any makeup specifically developed for brown skin that does not look great on other skin tones.

Padma Lakshmi for M·A·C 2018

Padma Lakshmi for M·A·C 2018

Padma Lakshmi is an author, TV personality and a former fashion model. But as glamorous as her credentials may seem, her life has been far from smooth-sailing. Growing up in Los Angeles in her teens, she had to cope with racial taunts and persecutions which heightened her insecurities of being a minority. Living with endometriosis also meant that she would experience chronic pelvic pain (among many other issues) during her menstruation, causing her to be bedridden every month for a week and as a result, miss out on important occasions throughout the years.

Instead of wallowing in self pity, Padma concentrates on leveraging her shortcomings for the betterment of life. In the hope that no other sufferers would slip under the radar like she had been, she co-founded The Endometriosis Foundation of America, a non-profit organisation which focuses on bringing awareness of the disease to the general public and helping to find a cure for it. Her choosing not to cover up the seven-inch scar on her arm inflicted by a car accident is another testament of her bravery to break the mould in the entertainment industry which is often unforgiving towards any forms of imperfection. Now, turning her struggles as an brown-skinned girl into a makeup collaboration with M·A·C, she has created a 17-piece collection that caters to darker skin tones, yet complements fair complexions at the same time and effectively hitting two birds with one stone.

MY HAUL!

MY HAUL!

Breathtaking lipstick packaging

Breathtaking lipstick packaging

Released in March, the gold-emblazoned collection with Mehndi-inspired design includes 6 Lipsticks (Sunset Rose / Nude Fudge / Mittai Pink / Sumac / Apricot Gold / Blue Blood), Cremesheen Glass in Nefertiti, 2 Powder Blush Duos (Moon & Shine / Melon Pink), 2 eye shadow quads (70’s Sunset / Desert Dusk), 3 Powerpoint Eye Pencils (Iced Heather & Kerala Sun / Indian Ink & Mossy Green / Bordeauxline & Molé Brown) and 3 brushes (#168 / #275 / #213) – out of which 4 across different product categories will be reviewed in this post.

Eye Shadow X4: 70’s Sunset

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Eye Shadow X4 in 70's Sunset (US$33)

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Eye Shadow X4 in 70’s Sunset (US$33)

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Eye Shadow X4 in 70's Sunset

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Eye Shadow X4 in 70’s Sunset

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Eye Shadow X4 in 70's Sunset

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Eye Shadow X4 in 70’s Sunset

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Eye Shadow X4 in 70's Sunset

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Eye Shadow X4 in 70’s Sunset

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Eye Shadow X4 in 70's Sunset

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Eye Shadow X4 in 70’s Sunset

70's Sunset swatches using damp brush and dry finger

70’s Sunset swatches using damp brush and dry finger

Picking the right eye shadow colours can be a tricky business for most Asians since our non-existent eyelid creases and limited lid space do not allow for much leeway in creativity. The wrong choice of eye shadow can easily ruin our overall look, and too much makeup can also overwhelm our teeny-weeny eyes. But what other options do we have apart from boring ol’ neutrals? The answer – if I may jump the gun – lies in this specially curated palette of four unusual yet harmonious shades in a luxurious gilded case (with a push-to-open latch) which by far has the best colour combination that M·A·C has ever produced in the history of my makeup-obsessed life.

The following palettes were selected for comparison purposes due to their similarities to 70’s Sunset: Too Faced Clover Eyeshadow Palette · M·A·C × Rossy de Palma Veluxe Pearlfusion Shadow · Urban Decay × Jean-Michel Basquiat Tenant Eyeshadow Palette

Sand & Clay is described as a midtone cool beige with a matte finish. Although rather low-contrast against my skin, this no-frills warm-toned apricot is pigmented with a delightfully smooth and even consistency, adhering well to the lids with no fallout when applied. Semi-opaque on the first pass, it is buildable to full opacity with the next layer and can simply be diffused around the edges. It can act as a base for heavy colours to build on and bring out the eyes. When used wet, the colour becomes darker with a tinge of glossiness. But once blended out, it loses its intensity and becomes as vibrant as its original dry state. Either way, this shade didn’t crease on my lids.

Sand & Clay swatch comparisons

Sand & Clay swatch comparisons

Cardamom is described as a cool light green with white frost and Veluxe Pearl finish. Infused with silver microshimmers, this shimmery pale cool-toned green has a smooth texture with very minimal fallout even though it has seemingly sparse particles. Sheer upon application, it is not quite visible on my lid unless hit by direct light. This shade works best as a topper or when applied at the inner corners of eyes to add a pop of sparkle or downplay tired-looking eyes. Adding it on the lower lash line can also help camouflage dark circles when light reflects off the eye shadow.

That said, only when it is wet that it can be used to its full potential. In its moist state, it transforms to a slightly metallic finish, and shimmers become visibly more densely packed which makes it more pronounce on the lid. Despite it being more rigid when wet, I was still able to blend it out with ease.

Cardamom swatch comparisons

Cardamom swatch comparisons

Mumtaz is described as a copper with gold sparkle and Veluxe Pearl finish but a swatch reveals it to be more of a cool berry than the rose-pink in the pan. A colour that defines the socket of the eye, it packs a lot of pigment while providing a smooth and even consistency. The intensity lightens a great deal when blended out even though it is still buildable to your desired level of impact. The texture certainly feels grittier when it is dry so some fallout and kickback are expected. To get around this issue, the eye shadow can be applied wet but the tradeoff would be that it would form harsh edges that are almost impossible to diffuse.

Mumtaz swatch comparisons

Mumtaz swatch comparisons

All’s Rosy is described as a midtone plum with gold pearl and a matte finish. This eggplant purple has microshimmers of a somewhat lighter colour and is cooler than Mumtaz in undertones. Although offers pigmented payoff, the texture can be a tad chalky. It is prone to leave fallout due to its loose consistency but on the plus side, it makes it easier to blend out the edges and add a little more depth to the eyes. That said, this shade is best applied wet as it intensifies the colour and it would also be more manageable when the shimmers become more densely packed. But doing so would take you awhile to soften out the harsh edges.

All's Rosy swatch comparisons

All’s Rosy swatch comparisons

APPLICATION & SUGGESTED LOOK

Primed my lids with Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion

Primed my lids with Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion

Starting with Sand & Clay

Starting with Sand & Clay

Sand & Clay as the base colour

Sand & Clay as the base colour

Followed by Mumtaz

Followed by Mumtaz

Mumtaz to define my eyes (and to create a subtle ombre!)

Mumtaz to define my eyes (and to create a subtle ombre!)

All's Rosy is next

All’s Rosy is next

All's Rosy for an added depth, and to complete the ombre

All’s Rosy for an added depth, and to complete the ombre

Cardamom as the finishing shade

Cardamom as the finishing shade

Wetting the brush so that the shade would be more prominent on my lids

Wetting the brush so that the shade would be more prominent on my lids

Cardamom on the inner corners to add a pop of sparkle to the eyes

Cardamom on the inner corners to add a pop of sparkle to the eyes

Complete the look with some colours (can be in the same sequence as those on the lid) on the lower lash line

Complete the look with some colours (can be in the same sequence as those on the lid) on the lower lash line

Voila! A look that's not too subtle and not too heavy!

Voila! A look that’s not too subtle and not too heavy!

Optional: line the eyes for maximum impact (I'm using the Rollerwheel Liquid Liner which I had reviewed some time ago)

Optional: line the eyes for maximum impact (I’m using the Rollerwheel Liquid Liner which I had reviewed some time ago)

Finished!

Finished!

Powerpoint Eye Pencil:
Indian Ink/Mossy Green

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil (US$18.50)

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil (US$18.50)

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil

M·A·C is known to boast a plethora of eyeliners just like it does for lipsticks. Powerpoint Eye Pencil is one of its many ranges which promises waterproof, long-wearing in metallic, shimmery or matte finish. From experience, this range of liners does not give the most pigmented of colour but it does stay on the lid for as long as I want it to, and it does take a bit more effort to remove it. Although I’m not really a fan of the application, it was just too hard to pass up on the offer of having two shades for the price of one (to be exact, they’re 50 cents more than those in regular packaging but whatever). Furthermore, that green is GORGEOUS.

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Indian Ink

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Indian Ink

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Indian Ink

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Indian Ink

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Indian Ink

Indian Ink is described as a pure black which is a complete lie (seriously, who does all these inaccurate descriptions on the website?) because anybody with a normal vision would be able to see that it is a cool-toned navy blue. The first stroke of this matte liner gives a sheer coverage but it is buildable to semi-opaque coverage with three passes. The texture glided moderately smoothly across the lid without tugging the skin and deposited enough colour for it to be prominent enough atop the eye shadow. As expected, it didn’t budge or smudge on my lower lid throughout the nine hours I had it on despite the oily surface.

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Mossy Green

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Mossy Green

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Mossy Green

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Mossy Green

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Mossy Green

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Mossy Green

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Indian Ink & Mossy Green

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Indian Ink & Mossy Green

Mossy Green, on the other hand, is described as a deep green with a slightly metallic finish. This stunning cool-toned army green has tiny gold flecks which are aren’t conspicuous unless viewed up-close. It glides smoothly and has a lightly creamy texture. Smudge-resistant, it provides semi-opaque pigmentation in one stroke and is buildable to a full coverage. But much as I love this shade, it unfortunately doesn’t translate well on the lid especially on eye shadow because it kinda appears greyish? Nevertheless, this shade wore well on me for over nine hours.

NOTE: I just remembered that I do have blue and green eyeliners somewhere in my stash so check back soon for some comparison swatches of this eye pencil!

Lipstick: Apricot Gold

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Apricot Gold (US$18.50)

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Apricot Gold (US$18.50)

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Apricot Gold

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Apricot Gold

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Apricot Gold

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Apricot Gold

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Apricot Gold

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Apricot Gold

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Apricot Gold

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Apricot Gold

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Apricot Gold

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Apricot Gold

Apricot Gold is described as a midtone peach nude with Amplified finish. This terracotta orange glides on the lips to instantly brighten the face and give a glistening texture that feels both lightweight and comfortably moisturising. I can see it working beautifully on dark complexions as well, which could jolly well be true judging from its sold-out status online. But it accentuates lip lines and doesn’t really apply evenly especially on the wrinklier areas such as the inner corners of the lips. Still, it’s a lovely everyday colour which was able to withstand a light meal. It wore well on me for about five hours before fading to a stain.

Swatch comparison against Apricot Gold

Swatch comparison against Apricot Gold

Lipstick: Nude Fudge

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Nude Fudge (US$18.50)

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Nude Fudge (US$18.50)

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Nude Fudge

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Nude Fudge

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Nude Fudge

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Nude Fudge

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Nude Fudge

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Nude Fudge

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Nude Fudge

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Nude Fudge

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Nude Fudge

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi lipstick in Nude Fudge

Nude Fudge is another universally flattering shade described as a midtone neutral with a matte finish. This medium cool-toned rosebrown tugs slightly during application but offers an even and opaque coverage. It has a smooth and creamy texture that isn’t too drying despite it being a matte, which is a plus for my flaky lips. On top of that, it is also able to conceal imperfections pretty well. Similarly, this shade wore well on me for about five hours before some product noticeably settled into the cracks. But it didn’t make my lips look awfully parched so I’m willing to close my eyes to that. With such commendable application, it beats me why it hasn’t been wiped off the shelves yet.
Swatch comparison against Nude Fudge

Swatch comparison against Nude Fudge

The overall great quality and uniqueness (I’m lovin’ all the greens – such novelty!) of the products in this collection, as well as the element of surprise in them makes this collaboration one of the best that M·A·C has done so far. I like how certain shades appeared to be impractical for daily use but turned out to be subtle enough for those who shy away from bold colours and yet made a world of difference to the look. Definitely my best makeup purchase of 2018. I’m kinda bummed out that it isn’t given much airtime to garner enough hype before the next collection (*cough* Patrick Starrr *cough) was rolled out.

What do you think of this collection? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below or take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading!

M·A·C × Padma Lakshmi is now available on MACCosmetics.com and AT ion & vIVOCITY tangs OUTLETS.

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REVIEW: M·A·C × Jade Jagger Lipstick in Sunset Pearl & Mineralized Eye Shadow X4 in Golden Shine

Hello everyone!

Each year, M·A·C graces us with collaborations with adored names from popular culture, some having almost no relevance to the beauty world. Before 2017 came to a close, they surprised us with yet another unexpected partnership, although this time with one bearing a last name that would ring a bell even if not acquainted with the Rock ‘n’ Roll scene in the 60s and 70s – all thanks to Maroon 5 and Christina Aguilera.

Notably known as the daughter of Mike Jagger, the lead singer of the legendary rock band Rolling Stones (and also the subject of the song “Moves Like Jagger”), Jade Jagger spent her glamorous childhood surrounded by celebrities including late pop artist Andy Warhol who often babysat her following her parents’ divorce. But in spite of her privileged upbringing, she would then go on to make a name for herself as an esteemed jewellery designer, occasional model and a socialite.

Recognising that jewels and makeup are an essential part of a woman’s ritual when getting dressed, she brought her “gemstone proclivities and free-spirited sensibilities” (while paying tribute to her Rock ‘n’ Roll heritage) to her first collaboration with M·A·C and created a capsule makeup collection of luxurious jewel tones and deep metallics.

Launched last December, the eight-piece collection includes lipsticks (Opal Beach, Sunset Pearl and Rolling Red), eye shadow quads (Burning Nights and Golden Shine) a blush (Moon Shimmer and Perfect Bronze) and highlight (Satin Shimmer) – all of which fall under the brand’s Mineralize Rich range (which was one of Jagger’s top preferences for containing natural pigments) and complete with glitzy yet edgy gold and black packaging to complement her jewellery line.

Take a look at the collection (photographed during the launch here at M·A·C ION Orchard) below:

The display

The display

Swatches for all lipsticks in the M·A·C × Jade Jagger collection

Swatches for all lipsticks in the M·A·C × Jade Jagger collection

Swatches for bronzer and blush in the M·A·C × Jade Jagger collection

Swatches for bronzer and blush in the M·A·C × Jade Jagger collection

Swatches for Burning Lights eye shadow quad (those of Golden Shine will be shown later in the review). I was initially planning to get this but the blue really disappointed me. The colour when swatched was nowhere near the vibrant blue on the palette (it actually looks like grey?) and it had a messy, talc-like consistency. Nope.

Swatches for Burning Lights eye shadow quad (those of Golden Shine will be shown later in the review). I was initially planning to get this but the blue really disappointed me. The colour when swatched was nowhere near the vibrant blue on the palette (it actually looks like grey?) and it had a messy, talc-like consistency. Nope.

As per what is expected of the Mineralize range, this collection features packaging with a magnetic closure and, in the case of the eye shadow, a mirror (which, in my opinion, is too small and set too far into the lid to be practical for my beady, short-sighted eyes) and is significantly pricier than usual because of the nourishing ingredients and technology that go into formulating them.

But on the downside, the steeper price tag has also been a deterrent for me to purchase anything from the Mineralize line, which is why it is hardly talked about here despite me being a considerably fervent supporter of M·A·C. Hence, much as I really liked the Haute Dogs collection, I didn’t feel propelled to buy anything because I couldn’t justify paying almost double the price for what could be found in the regular line. Likewise, when I knew this collaboration was going to be sold under the Mineralize umbrella, I was already prepared to pass on it altogether.

Then came the invitation to the launch event which coincided with the first year anniversary of the opening M·A·C ION Orchard in December. In celebration of the milestone, event attendees were given M·A·C shopping vouchers (among many other freebies) and I gladly spent them on Mineralize Eye Shadow in Golden Shine and Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl 😆

My picks!

My picks!

Mineralize Eye Shadow X 4: Golden Shine

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Eye Shadow X 4 in Golden Shine (US$46 / S$)

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Eye Shadow X 4 in Golden Shine (US$46 / S$)

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Eye Shadow X 4 in Golden Shine

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Eye Shadow X 4 in Golden Shine

The eye shadow quad comes with a protective film over it

The eye shadow quad comes with a protective film over it

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Eye Shadow X 4 in Golden Shine

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Eye Shadow X 4 in Golden Shine

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Eye Shadow X 4 in Golden Shine

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Eye Shadow X 4 in Golden Shine

Swatches applied with wet and dry brushes

Swatches applied with wet and dry brushes

A powder formula of refined baked minerals, Golden Shine promises ultra-lightweight coverage in four coordinated warm non-matte shades including a soft champagne gold, rose gold, bright copper and deep reddish brown. According to M·A·C, unlike traditionally pressed shadows, each of the shadows in this palm-size (easy to carry around) palette is moulded into small round terracotta tiles (like little hemispheres) measuring less than 2 cm in diameter and presented à la CHANEL (think Les 4 Ombres palette) which I am not a fan of because it looks rather old-fashioned.

Infused with Mineral-rich Yeast Extract – a Multi-Mineral Complex which purportedly nourishes while providing silky-smooth, buildable coverage, the eye shadows are carefully baked for 24 hours to allow for an exceptionally sheer and light application. M·A·C recommends that they be applied dry for low to medium coverage with a shimmery finish, or wet (with setting spray such as M·A·C Prep + Prime Fix+ instead of water for better results) for more intense coverage and colour. If you intend to use them wet, do make sure you only moisten the brush after dabbing it into the eye shadow to prevent the pan from becoming wet (which can subsequently cause mold!).

Soft champagne gold is a brightened, light-medium gold with yellow undertones and a frosted sheen. When applied dry, the glitter particles are sparse and the texture feels gritty. The payoff is sheer yet easy to blend, making it a great alternative to face highlighter (so you won’t have to make space for a highlight compact in your cosmetics bag!). The shimmers are more well-distributed when wet, and they capture light better to deliver even more radiance. The eye shadow also has greater buildable coverage when used with a dampened brush.

Swatch comparison for soft champagne gold

Swatch comparison for soft champagne gold

Rose gold is a medium reddish brown with a shimmery finish. Its shimmer particles are much more fine with a looser consistency and these factors contribute to its uneven (but buildable) consistency. Thus when applied as is, it falls out. However, the moment the eye shadow interacts with a speck of water, the particles pack densely together and the colour also appears deeper with a visibly opaque payoff. On top of that, application becomes a lot smoother and edges can now be diffused rather easily. For these reasons, I feel this shade performs better when applied with a dampened brush.

Swatch comparison for rose gold

Swatch comparison for rose gold

Bright copper (presumably, because no matter how I look at it, it does not look like copper to me) is a gaudy medium-deep gold with brown undertones and a frosted sheen that has the potential to transform into metallic with more pressure is applied to it. The payoff for this shade is almost identical when dry and wet. In both instances, it delivers a smooth and silky consistency and a highly pigmented and opaque finish with about two layers, coupled with very densely packed particles and a buildable coverage. Perhaps one distinction when applied wet is that the texture tends to stiffen slightly, causing the edges not to blend out very well.

Swatch comparison for bright copper

Swatch comparison for bright copper

Deep reddish brown is a blackened brown with pink shimmers that are thinly dispersed. That said, this shade has noticeably less shimmers that are not as obtrusive as the others. Without moistening, the first few layers give a semi-sheer, soft and blurred finish. But once it gets slightly wet, the edges become more well-defined – which, on the downside, doesn’t allow for easy blending – while greatly intensifying the colour payoff and opacity.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

APPLICATION & SUGGESTED LOOK

For a more accurate depiction of the eye shadows’ payoff in this review, they are used in their unaltered form without any wetting agent to create the suggested look below.

[BEFORE] As always, I primed my lids before applying eye shadow

[BEFORE] As always, I primed my lids before applying eye shadow

Look how small the palette is!

Look how small the palette is!

Rose gold as the base colour

Rose gold as the base colour

Blend it with soft champagne gold to create a little ombré effect towards the brows

Blend it with soft champagne gold to create a little ombré effect towards the brows

Fill the creases with bright copper

Fill the creases with bright copper

Add additional layers of bright copper to make it pop. Make sure to blend it with the rose gold above

Add additional layers of bright copper to make it pop. Make sure to blend it with the rose gold above

Apply bright copper to the waterline

Apply bright copper to the waterline

Complete the look with deep reddish brown to add some depth

Complete the look with deep reddish brown to add some depth

[AFTER] The result

[AFTER] The result

A closer look

A closer look

With eyeliner

With eyeliner

In general, the eye shadows, apply a lot less chalky than expected and they adhere to the lids fairly well even when dry. That said, they have a looser consistency than traditional ones and can generate a bit of a mess as they tend to kick up more product than necessary when I dip my brush into the pans (so I had to keep wiping away the fallout on the palette after every use). Furthermore, being mostly complementary colours, there won’t be much of a dramatic contrast between any of the two neutrals but this also makes it ideal for fail-proof everyday definition.

Aftermath...

Aftermath…

Lipstick: Sunset Pearl

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl (US$25 / S$)

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl (US$25 / S$)

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl

M·A·C × Jade Jagger Mineralize Rich Lipstick in Sunset Pearl

Sunset Pearl is described as a midtone rosey brown in Mineralized finish. A limited edition shade, it is specially formulated to be lightweight with nourishing properties to condition the lips with maximum moisture. This reddish beige glides comfortably on the lips like butter to coat every contour and fine line with semi-sheer coverage. But because it isn’t entirely opaque, it does not provide enough pigment to conceal rough patches substantially and adding additional layers will only amplify their texture even more (as the rough patches will seem a lot darker than other areas). Therefore, it will be advisable to exfoliate the lips before application.

Buildable to a deeper, more opaque colour, this lipstick has emollient and hydrating effect, leaving the lips soft and supple. Since starting on Oratane about a month ago, my lips have been exceptionally prone to chapping and this actually manages to keep my lips from flaking further within the first three hours of wear (until I have my meal, basically). A pretty neutral that is not too light and not too heavy, this shade does a phenomenal job in bringing out the sparkle of the colours layered over the lids using the Golden Shine palette!

Swatch comparison for Sunset Pearl

Swatch comparison for Sunset Pearl

Although the collection is no longer stocked in stores, it is still available on MAC Cosmetics website in very limited quantities (as the last time I checked, the eye shadow quads have been taken down already), so hurry and snatch up your favourites before they are gone for good!

What do you think about this collection? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below or simply take a poll!

Thanks for reading!

M·A·C × Jade Jagger is now available on MACCosmetics.com and was sold in all local M.A.C outlets.

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REVIEW: M·A·C × Patrick Starrr Lipsticks – Patrick Woo, Mamastarrr & She Betta Werrrk

Hello everyone!

The 21st century has brought about several significant changes in the realm of beauty, one of which is how society’s perception of beauty has evolved over time. Because of that, cosmetics giants such as Maybelline and Covergirl are also publicly expanding the boundaries of what is conventionally associated to femininity by including male makeup-wearing models in their advertisements and campaigns. But when it comes to inclusivity, I believe no other brand does it more naturally than M·A·C who had partnered with the likes of Gabriel Zamora in the past. Obviously not new to the ‘boy beauty’ movement, M·A·C decided to join forces with Patrick Starrr to create a series of makeup collections for all ages, races and sexes.

 

Patrick Starrr for M·A·C

Patrick Starrr for M·A·C

Born in the U.S to Filipino parents, Patrick Starrr (whose real name is Patrick Simondac) was training to be a nurse at the university when he found his calling as a makeup artist through his stint at Sephora and M·A·C. Upset that he wasn’t assigned any hours at M·A·C after the holiday season in 2013, Patrick turned to YouTube as a means to maintain his artistry and as an outlet for creative freedom.

Although being one of the few boy beauty gurus at that time helped attract many eyeballs to his videos, it was after the late Talia Joy – a 13-year-old cancer patient who became a YouTube beauty guru and honorary CoverGirl – liked one of his videos that his fame exploded almost overnight, gaining him 20,000 followers in just a month. Since then, his channel has passed the 3 million subscription mark and Patrick himself has gone on to become a full-blown household name in the YouTube community with brands lining up to work with him (and was even given the opportunity to do Kim Kardashian’s makeup!). From Sephora to ABH, it was only a matter of time Patrick teamed up with the OG of collaborations (and the company that fuelled his passion in makeup artistry).

Patrick Starrr for M·A·C

Patrick Starrr for M·A·C

Patrick Starrr for M·A·C

Patrick Starrr for M·A·C

Dropped in the U.S. in December last year and in Singapore early last month, the M·A·C × Patrick Starrr collection (and this is just one part of his year-long project with the brand. Meaning to say, there’s more to come!) boasts a packaging that is nothing short of flamboyant – products are encased in reflective silver material and put in boxes embellished with glitter and metallic foil accents.

It comprises a setting powder which M·A·C members were able to pre-order on their U.S. website, three shades of lip pencil (in Brick, Edge to Edge & Mahogany) and lipglass (in Mamastarrr, Patrick Woo & She Betta Werrrk) with their corresponding lipsticks sold separately, as well as two eye shadow quads (in Glam AF & Goalgetter). But this review will only be focusing on the lipsticks in this collection.

Patrick Woo

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Patrick Woo (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Patrick Woo (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Patrick Woo. The label on the left camouflages into the packaging which makes it very unreadable. Why isn't it printed in black, though?

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Patrick Woo. The label on the left camouflages into the packaging which makes it very unreadable. Why isn’t it printed in black, though?

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Patrick Woo

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Patrick Woo

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Patrick Woo

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Patrick Woo

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Patrick Woo

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Patrick Woo

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Patrick Woo

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Patrick Woo

Patrick Woo is described as a deep yellow-red with Matte finish. Highly pigmented with an opaque coverage, this warm-toned red delivers a soft-matte appearance without accentuating any fine lines and instantly transforms the lips into a bold camera-ready pout.

In comparison to Ruby Woo, this feels a lot more moisturising although a discernible amount of tugging and dragging persists as it goes on my lips. Still, this universally-flattering lipstick allows for an even application in just one stroke and envelopes the lips in a rich and long-wearing timeless colour.

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr lipstick in Patrick Woo swatch comparison

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr lipstick in Patrick Woo swatch comparison

Mamastarrr

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Mamastarrr (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Mamastarrr (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Mamastarrr

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Mamastarrr

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Mamastarrr

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Mamastarrr

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Mamastarrr

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Mamastarrr

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Mamastarrr

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Mamastarrr

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Mamastarrr

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in Mamastarrr

Exude a nouveau bohemian vibe with Mamastarrr, an incredibly wearable darkened terracotta which does not draw attention away from your elaborate eye makeup while still enhancing the overall appearance of the face. Described by M·A·C as a reddish brown with Satin finish, it goes on smooth with minimal tugging and skipping to provide full-coverage and an unobtrusive sheen in one swipe.

As gorgeous as it seems, however, it has the tendency to amplify dry patches and settle into lines, making the lips look more wrinkly than usual. That said, it does not strip moisture from the lips and cause them to chap and peel (which happens to me a lot) after several hours of wear. This colour fades to a subtle beige stain after a full meal.

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr lipstick in Mamastarrr swatch comparison

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr lipstick in Mamastarrr swatch comparison

She Betta Werrrk

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in She Betta Werrrk (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in She Betta Werrrk (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in She Betta Werrrk

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in She Betta Werrrk

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in She Betta Werrrk

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in She Betta Werrrk

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in She Betta Werrrk

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in She Betta Werrrk

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in She Betta Werrrk

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in She Betta Werrrk

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in She Betta Werrrk

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr in She Betta Werrrk

She Betta Werrrk is described as a soft pink with Matte finish. A better reincarnation of The Pinkprint with only a smidgen of its shine, this cool-toned muted rose is darker and certainly far more superior in terms of longevity, coverage and consistency. It goes on the lips more evenly and is more resistant to transfer.

Having said that, the texture isn’t exactly creamy and pliable – it applies with some tugging and requires a couple of layered coats to achieve full opacity. But the more I run the lipstick over my lips, the more it seems to intensify the appearance of my lip lines. On top of that, this colour is noticeably more drying, so much so that my lips started to flake as the hour went by. This colour is best suited for porcelain complexions in my opinion because it looks kinda odd against my yellow-toned skin.

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr lipstick in She Betta Werrrk swatch comparison (oops, I compared it so much with The Pinkprint and yet I had forgotten to swatch it against it. I will add the comparison here soon!)

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr lipstick in She Betta Werrrk swatch comparison (oops, I compared it so much with The Pinkprint and yet I had forgotten to swatch it against it. I will add the comparison here soon!)

Although it was really thoughtful of Patrick Starrr to have opted for safe shades that would work for most skin tones across the board for this collection, I found the choice of colours a tad too boring and repetitive for my liking (even though they generally apply a lot better than their precedents). Hopefully, we get to see a more diverse selection in his subsequent M·A·C releases.

And seriously, what’s with his obsession with triple Rs, though? 😒

What do you think of the M·A·C × Patrick Starrr collection? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below or take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading!

M·A·C × Patrick Starrr is now available on MACCosmetics.com and exclusively in M.A.C ION Orchard and TANGS Vivocity outlets.

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REVIEW: M·A·C × Rossy de Palma Veluxe Pearlfusion Shadow, Lipsticks in Rossy & Phenomenal Woman

Hello everyone!

Before the Snow Ball collection took center stage with it stunning marketing visuals, there was another contender that had attracted a great deal of attention for its equally innovative packaging design.

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma for Fall 2017

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma for Fall 2017

Born Rosa Elena García Echave in Spain, Rossy de Palma is a former fashion model, an actress and a charity spokesperson for the Ghanian Charity OrphanAid Africa which among other causes, advocates for the closure of illegal orphanages. Often dubbed a walking Picasso painting, de Palma doesn’t fit the stereotypical definition of a high-profile actress – she doesn’t have doe eyes, sharp nose nor a perfectly proportioned mouth. But it’s this extraordinary (like, literally!) look of hers that had earned her the right to walk the runways for Mugler, Gaultier, and Givenchy and become the face of luxury ad campaigns. What a role model she is!

In this day and age of nip and tuck where most people won’t even bat an eyelid to modify their appearance with cosmetic surgery (and end up looking like they were all stamped out of the same cookie cutter), her unique aesthetic comes across as striking yet authentic at the same time, like a breath of fresh air. In fact, don’t you think she looks like a Picasso-esque version of Lady Gaga?

The display (FYI the one with the nose image is the contour kit - kinda like that one too)

The display (FYI the one with the nose image is the contour kit – kinda like that one too)

My haul!

My haul!

And what better way to embrace your (im)perfections than partnering with M·A·C on a collection centered around them? This collection takes inspiration from Cubism – an early-20th-century art movement created by Picasso – with gold as the primary colour and Rossy’s artistic signature plastered on all the products. For a more Cubist approach, a lenticular image of her (zoomed in, no less) unconventional facial attributes are featured on the packaging of a selected range as seen in the promotional picture above. It may not be the intention, but I like how Rossy de Palma and M·A·C are delivering a subtle screw you to bigots who have criticised her looks with this collaboration.

“Hate my fractured nose and my asymmetrical eyelids, you say? Here’s every part of me you dislike on your makeup. HA, take that!”

All jokes aside, I don’t usually venture out into buying anything else apart from lipsticks from any M·A·C collection. But the packaging is just too brilliant to resist 😆

#1 Veluxe Pearlfusion Shadow

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Veluxe Pearlfinish Shadow (US$32 / S$72)

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Veluxe Pearlfinish Shadow (US$32 / S$72)

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Veluxe Pearlfinish Shadow - the lenticular effect!

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Veluxe Pearlfinish Shadow – the lenticular effect!

Other details

Other details

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Veluxe Pearlfinish Shadow - the shades

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Veluxe Pearlfinish Shadow – the shades

SWATCHES & REVIEW

Close-up of the 6 shades, all in pans of different sizes

Close-up of the 6 shades, all in pans of different sizes

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Veluxe Pearlfinish Shadow swatches

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Veluxe Pearlfinish Shadow swatches

Pinky is described a bright pink with Veluxe Pearl finish. It is a warm-toned medium pink glistened with very fine fuchsia shimmers and is filled in the smallest pan of the palette (the same with Money) which can be a little hard for a fluffy brush to reach without touching the shade next to it.

Semi-opaque in coverage, this shade works great as a base colour. Probably due to its soft and smooth texture, it causes quite a bit of kick-up in the pan (chunks of product would come off) when picked up with a brush. Despite its flaky consistency (which is rather noticeable on the lid), it blends well on the lid without having much fallout and leaves an evenly silky finish. Also, it doesn’t have the tendency to stain like most pink eye shadows and can be easily removed.

Swatch comparison for Pinky

Swatch comparison for Pinky

Smokes is described as a soft lilac with Veluxe Pearl finish. It is a cool-toned purple with fine blue shimmers (albeit more subtle than the others). Powdery in texture, this shade applies unevenly on the lid with both dry and dampened brushes and has sheer colour payoff with very limited buildability. When blended out, it loses its intensity to the extent of almost fading to nothing. I had to use small patting and dabbing motions for the colour to show reasonably but it still creases and fades away the moment my lids show signs of oiliness. Therefore, I won’t recommend this to be used on its own as a single shade.

Swatch comparison for Smokes

Swatch comparison for Smokes

Charcoal is described as a black with multi-colour pearl. It has a Veluxe Pearl finish mostly made of white, sparsely-scattered, in-your-face sparkles with an overall chunkier texture and powdery consistency. When hit with a brush, it leaves a negligible amount of kickback in the pan. But when applied on the lid, some product came dusting off into my eyes. Although it has fairly good pigmentation with semi-sheer (but buildable) coverage on the lid, it does not blend very well, unfortunately.

Considering that this shade would most likely be the least used of all since it is less versatile and more difficult to work with, it is pure bewilderment that it is allotted the largest pan size on this palette. Makes me wonder what the thought process behind the apportion of the pan sizes to the shades is like 🤔

Deep which is described as a dark blackened navy with Veluxe Pearl finish. This captivating shimmery cool-toned deep blue is as close as it gets to a metallic blue because of the densely packed sparkles. Deep goes on semi-opaque when first applied but can be built on to achieve full coverage. It is fairly blendable with a cream-like texture, therefore making it a joy to work with. It is definitely one of the better performers in this palette with a payoff on par with or a tad better than Pinky which wore well on me.

Swatch comparison for Charcoal and Deep

Swatch comparison for Charcoal and Deep

In the bottommost pan on the palette is Money, a soft green with Veluxe Pearl finish as described by M·A·C. This turquoise with fine green shimmers has a flaky texture like Pinky which tends to ball up in the pan. When applied, it gives a sheer to semi-opaque coverage (don’t be deceived by the swatch – the pigment is nothing of the sort on my lid) that would take a few coats to build the colour intensity up. A point to note, though, is that Money is rather loosely pressed as compared to the rest of the shades. Hence, although digging the brush into the pan may be necessary to get a decent payoff on the lid, it is not advisable lest you break it apart.

Nevertheless, this shade is a disappointment. Not only is it flighty on my naturally oily lid, it creases even over primer. I also had some trouble blending and diffusing this shade because it budges with the slightest contact. Even if I managed to get it work on my lid, it is only fleetingly as it started to look splotchy after two hours of wear.

Swatch comparison for Money

Swatch comparison for Money

APPLICATION & SUGGESTED LOOK

The products I will be using

The products I will be using

Using Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion to prime the lids

Using Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion to prime the lids

Pinky as base colour

Pinky as base colour

Money to make the eyes pop

Money to make the eyes pop

Smokes as a transition colour

Smokes as a transition colour

Deep to add depth (no pun intended)

Deep to add depth (no pun intended)

Smokes again to define (you can clearly see the colour rubbing off here)

Smokes again to define (you can clearly see the colour rubbing off here)

Mirroring the colours on the lower lid

Mirroring the colours on the lower lid

Charcoal for even more depth

Charcoal for even more depth (actually, I just wanted to wear all the shades on my lids)

Mirroring, again..

Mirroring, again..

And again..

And again..

How the shades in the pan translate onto my lids

How the shades in the pan translate onto my lids

The final look!

The final look!

#2 Lipstick – Rossy

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick packaging

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick packaging

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Rossy (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Rossy (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Rossy

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Rossy

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Rossy

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Rossy

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Rossy

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Rossy

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Rossy

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Rossy

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Rossy

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Rossy

Rossy is described as a dirty mauve purple with Matte finish. Creamy in texture, this warm-toned purple glides on like butter and imparts a hint of lustre to keep the lips looking (and feeling) moisturised. The texture is slightly oily for a matte which makes it susceptible to transfer and shorter wear time. On top of that, I notice that this shade also tends to settle into my lip lines. It applies evenly and has pretty good pigmentation but requires several swipes to be reasonably opaque.

Swatch comparison for Rossy

Swatch comparison for Rossy

#3 Lipstick – Phenomenal Woman

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Phenomenal Woman (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Phenomenal Woman (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Phenomenal Woman

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Phenomenal Woman

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Phenomenal Woman

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Phenomenal Woman

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Phenomenal Woman

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Phenomenal Woman

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Phenomenal Woman

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Phenomenal Woman

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Phenomenal Woman

M·A·C × Rossy De Palma Lipstick in Phenomenal Woman

Phenomenal Woman is an online-exclusive described as a dark plum with Matte finish and is the only lipstick in this collection to sell out online. This cool-toned burgundy has a richer sheen to it which is not something I would expect from a matte formula. In fact, I think it looks more satin than matte. This shade tugs and pulls lightly at the lips during application, giving a streaky and uneven payoff which is mostly caused by the product seeping into the lip lines and clinging onto the dry patches on the lips. It has a thin and tacky texture that is neither hydrating nor drying on me.

Swatch comparison for Phenomenal Woman

Swatch comparison for Phenomenal Woman

I must say that I’m pleasantly surprised that, despite the fanciful packaging and unchanged pricing, the quality in the products (maybe save that few shades in the eye shadow compact that didn’t apply very well. Shame!) did not really take a beating. Has M·A·C finally come to the realisation that in the eyes of consumers, quality is king? If that’s the case, I can’t wait to see what more M·A·C has to offer for the coming year!

What do you think about M·A·C × Rossy De Palma? Let me know your comments below or take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading!

M·A·C × Rossy de Palma is now available on MACCosmetics.com and in all local M.A.C outlets.

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REVIEW: M·A·C Snow Ball – Face Bag (Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt), Lipsticks in Elle Belle & Holiday Crush

Hello everyone!

You know Christmas is just around the corner when mentions of M·A·C Holiday collection hit the internet. This year, our beloved beauty brand introduces Snow Ball – a massive collection wrapped entirely in gold snowflake-emblazoned packaging that would make you want to empty your bank account.

M·A·C Snow Ball for Holiday 2017

M·A·C Snow Ball for Holiday 2017

One of the many displays for M·A·C Snow Ball

One of the many displays for M·A·C Snow Ball

M·A·C Snow Ball Mini Lipstick Kit / M·A·C Classics (US$69.50 / S$150) featuring 12 shades: Party Commencing (Matte), Little Darling (Matte), Please Me (Matte), Mangrove (Matte), Ruby Woo (Matte), Rebel (Satin), Flat Out Fabulous (Matte), Good Kisser (Matte), Diva (Matte), Velvet Teddy (Matte), Whirl (Matte) & Stone (Matte)

M·A·C Snow Ball Mini Lipstick Kit / M·A·C Classics (US$69.50 / S$150) featuring 12 shades: Party Commencing (Matte), Little Darling (Matte), Please Me (Matte), Mangrove (Matte), Ruby Woo (Matte), Rebel (Satin), Flat Out Fabulous (Matte), Good Kisser (Matte), Diva (Matte), Velvet Teddy (Matte), Whirl (Matte) & Stone (Matte)

The Snow Ball Mini Lipstick Kit was an especially great bargain. If I hadn’t already owned 90% of the shades in there, I would have bought it in a heartbeat when it was pre-released to the M·A·C Obsessed members on the U.S. site.

M·A·C Snow Ball Extra Dimension Eye Shadow - all swatches (US$20 / S$37 each)

M·A·C Snow Ball Extra Dimension Eye Shadow – all swatches (US$20 / S$37 each)

M·A·C Snow Ball Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Face Bag - all swatches (US$49.50 / S$90 each)

M·A·C Snow Ball Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Face Bag – all swatches (US$49.50 / S$90 each)

M·A·C Snow Ball lipsticks - all swatches (US$17.50 / S$33 each)

M·A·C Snow Ball lipsticks – all swatches (US$17.50 / S$33 each)

Some other products from this collection not show above are the Face Powder (US$34 / S$46), Lash (US$17 / S$25) and Snowflake Adornment (US$16.50 / S$23). Unfortunately, the Prep + Prime Fix+ Kit (US$20) is not available in Singapore and you won’t be able to purchase it from the U.S. site too because of restrictions on shipping liquids. Ah, bummer! 😫

Apart from the to-die-for packaging, prices also seem to be a lot lower as compared to the previous years. Either M·A·C had decided to listen to the feedback of their customers or they had felt the pressure to keep their prices affordable from the growing competition in the market. Whatever it is, it is a win-win for both sides – customers wouldn’t feel much of a pinch shopping the collection and M·A·C gets to clear their stocks fast. And by fast, I mean wiping out almost everything in the collection within the first hour (both online and in Singapore stores)! 😲

Fortunately, I scored what I wanted on my list (many thanks to M·A·C Singapore 😘) and here’s my review:

#1 Face Bag (Gold)

M·A·C Snow Ball Face Bag (Gold, US$49.50 / S$90)

M·A·C Snow Ball Face Bag (Gold, US$49.50 / S$90)

M·A·C Snow Ball Face Bag (Gold)

M·A·C Snow Ball Face Bag (Gold)

Everything inside

Everything inside

Inside the bag

Inside the bag

Products in the Face Bag - Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt and 140 Synthetic Full Fan Brush

Products in the Face Bag – Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt and 140 Synthetic Full Fan Brush

M·A·C 140 Synthetic Full Fan Brush

M·A·C 140 Synthetic Full Fan Brush

The Snow Ball collection features two Face Bags in gold and peach with an US$85 value. Both bags, cheaply covered with scratchy sequins (gawd, I swear this is the laziest way to glitz up something) with a faux-fur pom pom hanging from the zipper, contain a different shade of snowflake-embossed Extra Dimension Skinfinish in rose gold packaging as well as an exclusive rose gold-handled 140 Synthetic Full Fan Brush worth US$42.

The peach version comes with Show Gold – which is already in the permanent line of Extra Dimension Skinfinish – while the shade in the gold one is limited edition so obviously, the demand was going to lean towards the latter. The brush, according to M·A·C, is “made from a blend of synthetic fibres in different diameter sizes to optimally pick up and apply powders”. The bristles are fluffy and smooth to the touch wonder but I why it is even included in the bag if it is more suited to applying loose powder which the highlighter isn’t?

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt

left: 3 swipes applied with my index finger / right: 3 swipes applied with slightly damp Sigma F35 Tapered Highlighter Brush

left: 3 swipes applied with my index finger / right: 3 swipes applied with slightly damp Sigma F35 Tapered Highlighter Brush

One of the most anticipated products in this collection, the Whisper of Gilt was first released in 2012 as a limited edition Extra Dimension Skinfinish and subsequently repromoted last year as part of the Sweet Copper Face Compact for the Nutcracker Holiday collection. The current holiday edition of the bestselling highlighter has a net weight of 7.5 g (0.26 oz) as opposed to the 9 g (0.31 oz) when it was launched in its original packaging. Each full-size Extra Dimension Skinfinish is sold for US$34 / S$55.

— APPLICATION (with M·A·C 140 Synthetic Full Fan Brush) —

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt - with the M·A·C 140 Synthetic Full Fan Brush

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt – with the M·A·C 140 Synthetic Full Fan Brush

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt - with the M·A·C 140 Synthetic Full Fan Brush

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt – with the M·A·C 140 Synthetic Full Fan Brush

Kinda looks like little beads of sweat above my cheekbone

Kinda looks like little beads of sweat above my cheekbone

— APPLICATION (with Sigma F41 Fan Brush) —

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt - with my Sigma F41 Fan Brush

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt – with my Sigma F41 Fan Brush

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt - with my Sigma F41 Fan Brush

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt – with my Sigma F41 Fan Brush

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt - with my Sigma F41 Fan Brush (much better!)

M·A·C Extra Dimension Skinfinish in Whisper of Gilt – with my Sigma F41 Fan Brush (much better!)

Finished look

Finished look

Whisper of Gilt is described as a pale gold shimmer with very finely milled luminous particles to give a sparkling finish. It is a champagne-toned highlighter that is neither too white nor gold, making it absolutely flattering on light to medium skin tones. Smooth to the touch, it has a soft consistency which makes it possible to blend and diffuse on the skin easily while adding just the right amount of glow. However, it does emphasise the natural texture of my skin to some extent (as I didn’t realise I had a little pimple above my cheekbone until I layered it with this highlighter 😐).

When applied with the M·A·C powder brush provided in the Face Bag, the highlighter appeared hardly visible on my skin. But with my Sigma F41 Fan Brush, it rendered a sheer to semi-opaque coverage (depending on how heavy-handed I was) and a moderate glow with two to three coats. Having said that, it is certainly capable of building to greater opacity when applied with finger or a denser (damp) brush if a more blinding radiance is preferred.

Whisper of Gilt as compared to highlighters from other brands (in terms of colour similarity, finish, etc.)

Whisper of Gilt as compared to highlighters from other brands (in terms of colour similarity, finish, etc.)

If you had missed out on the opportunity to snag a Face Bag at your local M·A·C store, or cannot bear to part with your money on a redundant bag and brush, Champagne Pop and Bigger and Better (from ColourPop’s Gimme More! Palette) are some more affordable dupes that you may want to consider.

M·A·C Snow Ball lipsticks packaging

M·A·C Snow Ball lipsticks packaging

M·A·C Snow Ball lipsticks packaging

M·A·C Snow Ball lipsticks packaging

Encased in gold tubes with smooth, glossy frost effect on the outside and kept in see-through plastic boxes with gold geometric snowflake patterns, the lipsticks are packaged similarly to the highlighter to conjure up that Christmas vibe. They’re so pretty and shiny, you can literally use them as your Christmas tree ornaments 😍

#2 Lipstick – Elle Belle

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Elle Bell (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Elle Bell (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Elle Bell

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Elle Belle

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Elle Belle

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Elle Belle

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Elle Bell

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Elle Bell

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Elle Bell

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Elle Bell

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Elle Belle

Elle Belle is described as a deep red with a Amplified finish. This luscious cool-toned berry red goes on smoothly with no drag and gives an opaque colour payoff in just one swipe. It has a glossy sheen and buttery texture to it but those somehow translate to an oily consistency which causes the lipstick to budge very quickly. Although hydrating and relatively comfortable to wear, it settles into the lines and emphasises dry patches, resulting in blobs of uneven colour on the lips if not properly exfoliated prior to application. When this shade fades to a plum stain after a few hours of wear, vertical streaks of the lipstick can be clearly seen along the lines on the lower lip. Yikes! 😣

Swatch comparison for Elle Belle

Swatch comparison for Elle Belle

#3 Lipstick – Holiday Crush

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Holiday Crush (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Holiday Crush (US$17.50 / S$33)

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Holiday Crush

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Holiday Crush

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Holiday Crush

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Holiday Crush

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Holiday Crush

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Holiday Crush

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Holiday Crush

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Holiday Crush

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Holiday Crush

M·A·C Snow Ball lipstick in Holiday Crush

Holiday Crush is described as a muted pink with sparkle and a Frost finish. This cool-toned muted copper glides on smoothly without tug and lends an evenly-distributed metallic shine across the lips to give a reflective-foiled look. It is lightweight and lightly emollient but feels slightly tacky on the lips. This shade catches light beautifully at every angle and takes about two coats to be fully (or reasonably) opaque. However, the finish seems to intensify the appearance of the lip lines and can make me kinda self-conscious if worn out in public so I’ll probably use it as a lip topper instead. But I cannot lie. This shade is a stunner!

Swatch comparison for Holiday Crush

Swatch comparison for Holiday Crush

Despite the price drop, I’m so glad M·A·C did not compromise on the quality and actually rolled out products that the customers really want. It seems like M·A·C is finally back in the game!

What do you think about this collection? Did you manage to get anything? Share your thoughts with me in the comments below or simply take a quick poll!

Thanks for reading!

Have a dazzling holiday!

Have a dazzling holiday!

M·A·C Snow Ball is now available on MACCosmetics.com and at all local M.A.C outlets. However, most items (e.g. lipsticks) are already sold out at all stores but you can still try your luck at Carousell or eBay 🙂

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