REVIEW: MAC x Caitlyn Jenner Lipsticks – Authentic Red, Rockit! & Understanding

Hey lovelies!

From gracing the cover of Vanity Fair (and subsequently Sports Illustrated) to becoming the first to reach one million followers in four hours on Twitter to fronting a cosmetics campaign for a rather prestigious brand to scoring her own reality TV show, Caitlyn Jenner seems to be receiving a lot more recognition than when she was still known as Bruce Jenner, an established Olympic decathlete. After all, she has defied all odds in this still largely transphobic and homophobic society (unfortunately) and transitioned into the woman she felt she had always been in the public eye at the ripe age of 66. If there is anything I can learn from her, it’s that there are no limits to achieving your dreams, no matter how old you are and what others may say. You are ultimately responsible for your own happiness.

Therefore, if you ask me, I’m actually glad that M.A.C decided to partner with Caitlyn Jenner again on a second makeup line, following the great reception of its predecessor last year.

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner 2017

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner 2017 (why this picture though)

Granted, she may not be the best role model for everyone. But she’s famous (and I’d say even more popular than Laverne Cox, as evident from their net worth) and she’s using her fame for good cause. I thought it was a wise move to engage Caitlyn again as their spokesperson as it would help raise awareness of transgender people especially in the more conservative Asian countries like Singapore where her second collection would also be launched. If M.A.C had chosen Laverne Cox as their new face, I dare say it wouldn’t have triggered a response as intense as this.

(ADV) Apart from lipsticks, what else can you get your sister on her birthday? Check out some gift ideas on ThatSweetGift! You’re welcome.

I agree, though, that it would be a lot more meaningful if some of the profits from this collection were donated to help the transgender community. But then again, there is already a lipstick sold for that purpose, which has raked in proceeds estimated at US$1.3 million for the M.A.C AIDS Fund Transgender Initiative. Besides, this collection is about Caitlyn Jenner, not the transgender community, so I don’t quite get the hoo-ha.. 🤔

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner 2017

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner 2017

This eight-piece collection features lipsticks in three gorgeous shades, three Cremesheen Glass (Kindness / Beautifully Bare / Tolerance), two Lip Pencils (Whirl / Soar), three single eyeshadows (Glowing Gold / Malibu Bronze / Worthy), one Eye Kohl (Teddy), individual lashes (#30), a Powder Blush Duo (Buddy) and a Mineralized Skinfinish Natural (Compassion), all decked out in luxurious soft-touch black (made with rubber material which will eventually turn sticky just like the NARS packaging 😐) and shiny metallic gold. Beautiful colour combination, I must say!

Interested to find out how the lipsticks fared? Read on!

#1 Authentic Red

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Authentic Red (US$17)

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Authentic Red (US$17)

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Authentic Red

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Authentic Red

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Authentic Red

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Authentic Red

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Authentic Red

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Authentic Red

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Authentic Red

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Authentic Red

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Authentic Red

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Authentic Red

Celebrating her newfound femininity, Caitlyn Jenner chose a lipstick hue that’s often seen as a statement of confidence and rebellion, and there is no other shade of lipstick that accentuates femininity like the good ol’ red does. Perhaps that was why she included Authentic Red – a deep red with Cremesheen finish – in her second M.A.C collection.

This warm red tugs slightly at the lips when applied but lends an opaque and great consistency of colour at first swipe. It leaves a glossy and tacky texture which feels thick and heavy for a Cremesheen and probably because of that, it is lasts longer on the lips than Rockit! and Understanding. It fades to a stain after a few hours. This lipstick, unfortunately, is slightly drying on me even though the subtle sheen does not make it seem so.

M.A.C Authentic Red swatch comparison

M.A.C Authentic Red swatch comparison

#2 Rockit!

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Rockit!

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Rockit! (US$17)

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Rockit!

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Rockit!

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Rockit!

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Rockit!

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Rockit!

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Rockit!

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Rockit!

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Rockit!

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Rockit!

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Rockit!

Much as red lipstick is a classic, not everyone feels comfortable sporting blood red lipsticks à la Taylor Swift that scream, “Look at me!” In that case, why not go for the barely-there appeal? Described as a midtone beige with Cremesheen finish, Rockit! provides a flush of My-Lips-But-Better rosy brown for those who are not ready for a strong red lip just yet.

Like Authentic Red, it drags and weighs down slightly on the lips. It is drying and I don’t know if it’s me but somehow there is this little tingling sensation when I wear it 🤔 The colour payoff is sheer at the beginning but builds to a seamless and decently opaque coverage after a couple (3-4) of applications (I can see the apparent difference even though this shade is very close to my natural lip colour), topped with a healthy, dewy shine that goes perfectly well with both light and heavy eye makeup. Still in awe over Alicia Key’s natural look on The X Factor? Well, envy no more! You can now spruce up the no-makeup look (but still with a teeny weeny bit of makeup, lah) with this flattering nude lipstick 😉

M.A.C Rockit! swatch comparison

M.A.C Rockit! swatch comparison

#3 Understanding

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Understanding (US$17 - online exclusive)

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Understanding (US$17 – online exclusive)

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Understanding

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Understanding

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Understanding

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Understanding

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Understanding

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Understanding

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Understanding

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Understanding

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Understanding

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner lipstick in Understanding

With names deriving from personality traits such as Understanding, Kindness, Compassion, Tolerance and Worthy given to the products in this collection, it’s hard not to think that Caitlyn Jenner is taking this opportune time to impart some sort of message to the transvestite community and their detractors. I thought the names are very well-thought-out and more impactful than say, launching a full-scale LGBT acceptance campaign because we ladies remember nothin’ but our makeup 😁

Of course, I’m all for supporting inclusivity but the limit to my funds (surprise, surprise, this ain’t sponsored) meant that I could only get Understanding, an online-exclusive hot red with Cremesheen finish. This lipstick glides on smooth and has a nice slip. It is sheer at first but builds to an opaque warm coral. Although it tends to accentuate the dry parts, it feels very comfortable on my lips. It enhances the pout further with a hint of sheen and moisture. Sadly, this does not stay past three hours. Very lovely colour, nonetheless!

M.A.C Understanding swatch comparison

M.A.C Understanding swatch comparison

In general, the lipsticks are very wearable despite the less-than-hydrating formula. As Caitlyn Jenner settles into her new life as a woman, it is probably too early for her to make a bold statement, and since this collection revolves around all-inclusive beauty, the hues picked out have to be pretty much universal. Hence, you can see that the hues border on the safe side with nothing too funky. In just a few strokes, they bring out the feminine charm within the user and I think that’s what Caitlyn herself wanted to achieve with both collections.

What do you think? Share your thoughts with me in the comments below!

Thanks for reading! 🙂

M.A.C X Caitlyn Jenner is now available on MACCosmetics.com. This collection was also launched in Singapore at M.A.C ION Orchard.

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REVIEW: MAC Fashion Pack Lipsticks – Aim For Gorgeous, Stylist’s Tip & By Special Order

Hey beauties!

Paris Fashion Week is just around the corner and as we get excited for the coming season, let’s all take a moment to appreciate the backstage work, or more precisely, the makeup that has played a huge role in bringing out the beauty of runway pieces. When it comes to runway makeup looks, no other brand gets as much recognition as M.A.C.

M.A.C, having started off as brand exclusively for makeup artists before going down the mainstream path, is no stranger to the fashion industry. It employs hundreds of makeup artists every season to create beauty looks for fashion shows (I mean, it’s very evident from their Instagram page, isn’t it?) and is even touted as a favourite of many renowned celebrities among the plethora of luxury makeup brands in the market. For those who are wondering what beauty products were used at the fashion shows, this collection could very well be the answer!

M.A.C Fashion Pack for Summer 2016

M.A.C Fashion Pack for Summer 2016

Introducing Fashion Pack, a collection dedicated to trendsetters which fuses fashion into beauty. Inspired by high fashion catwalk models, it features bold jewel tones and fashion-forward hues you’d likely see on runway models or front-row fashion show attendees.

M.A.C Fashion Pack collection lipsticks

M.A.C Fashion Pack collection lipsticks

Fashion Pack is a relatively small collection with two choices of eye shadow palette (Runway Worthy / She’s A Model), three shades of Fluidline Pen (Privet / Indelibly Blue / Retro Black), two vibrant Studio Nail Lacquer colours and four limited-edition runway-worthy lipstick hues, out of which only three made it to my shopping cart.

But despite being dubbed the ‘collection for fashion mavens’, the first impression of the products exudes none of the sort. Sold in the oh-so boring regular M.A.C black packaging, it’s quite hard to associate the lipsticks to the glitz and glam of fashion shows and red carpet events. Such disappointment, really.

#1 Aim For Gorgeous

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Aim For Gorgeous (US$17 / S$31)

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Aim For Gorgeous (US$17 / S$31)

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Aim For Gorgeous

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Aim For Gorgeous

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Aim For Gorgeous

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Aim For Gorgeous

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Aim For Gorgeous

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Aim For Gorgeous

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Aim For Gorgeous

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Aim For Gorgeous

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Aim For Gorgeous

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Aim For Gorgeous

For some, a love for fashion starts young. Indeed, we develop our sense of style though dressing our dolls up in stunning outfits we picked out at toy shops when we were little. So perhaps it’s only right this collection recaptures a little of our childhood enthusiasm for fashion with Aim For Gorgeous, a bright fuchsia with Matte finish which seems very much inspired by the signature hot pink lipstick Barbie wears (although this isn’t the case).

But it is far from being as emollient as the pink on Barbie’s pouting lips. This tugs at the lips and emphasises dryness as the product make itself at home in the lip lines, hence making parched lips look wrinklier than ever. The matte texture leaves a drying effect too. That being said, it does last longer on my lips than the newer and more hydrating matte formula by M.A.C.

M.A.C Aim for Gorgeous lipstick swatch comparison

M.A.C Aim for Gorgeous lipstick swatch comparison

#2 Stylist’s Tip

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Stylist's Tip (US$17 / S$31)

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Stylist’s Tip (US$17 / S$31)

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Stylist's Tip

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Stylist’s Tip

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Stylist's Tip

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Stylist’s Tip

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Stylist's Tip

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Stylist’s Tip

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Stylist's Tip

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Stylist’s Tip

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Stylist's Tip

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in Stylist’s Tip

If you have been avoiding bold lipstick colours all your life, it’s time to throw that sense of apprehension right out the window because purple is the new black! Did you see Taraji P. Henson rocking the hue at the American Music Awards last November? Channel your inner femme fatale just like her with Stylist’s Tip, a  deep violet in Amplified finish!

While what you see here may not be the exact shade she sported on the red carpet, it’s a less intimidating purple for first-timers due to its warm/pink undertones. This universally flattering lipstick (especially on dark skin) goes on creamy, mostly opaque and renders an OK consistency. Although hydrating (look at that sheen!), the texture feels slippery and tacky which instantly turns my lips into a hair magnet (so annoying). This also does not impress me with its lower-than-expected staying power as it wears away from eating (to be fair, it probably would leave a slight stain if I had eaten like a lady but damn I was hungry). Avoid this lipstick if you have no dining etiquette like me.

M.A.C Stylist's Tip lipstick swatch comparison

M.A.C Stylist’s Tip lipstick swatch comparison

#3 By Special Order

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in By Special Order (US$17 / S$31)

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in By Special Order (US$17 / S$31)

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in By Special Order

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in By Special Order

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in By Special Order

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in By Special Order

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in By Special Order

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in By Special Order

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in By Special Order

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in By Special Order

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in By Special Order

M.A.C Fashion Pack lipstick in By Special Order

Regardless of fashion trends, one can always expect to see red lipstick as a beauty staple. After all, red is arguably the first ever pigment (obtained from berries, plants, clay and yes, crushed insects, plus many more) applied to the lips way back in 3,000 BC. Several centuries later, the red lip clearly hasn’t lost any steam and is still going strong. Even though M.A.C has already made countless of red lipsticks, I agree it would be a beauty sin to pass on a lipstick hue that is largely popularised by fashion icons with the likes of Cleopatra, Queen Elizabeth I and Marilyn Monroe, especially in this fashion-inspired collection.

Described as a deep reddened fuchsia with an Amplified finish, By Special Order is, in reality, a bright red with cool undertones. As it glides smoothly like butter on the lips, it lends a very hydrating texture and even has a natural sheen to it to draw the attention away from lip wrinkles. The wash of pigmented colour from the lipstick, as well as the added pop of glossiness to the lips, enhances the overall look without being over-dramatic. On casual days, I dab this lipstick with a piece of facial tissue so that it fades to a tint. It would also help to remove some of its tackiness.

M.A.C By Special Order lipstick swatch comparison

M.A.C By Special Order lipstick swatch comparison

All in all, the lipstick shades in this collection, although nothing unusual, are very wearable for any look and occasion because they are not too bold (great for the faint of heart) and yet are such head-turners. The finish is generally hydrating and ideal for dry, chapped lips. I don’t see any reason not to get them if you haven’t already owned anything similar.

How do you find these lipsticks? Let me know in the comments below!

Thanks for reading 😘

M.A.C Fashion Pack was a limited edition collection launched in June 2016. most of the products are still available on MACCosmetics.com.

REVIEW: MAC x Chris Chang of Poesia Lipsticks – Dddevilish, Gold XIXI, Plum Princess & Cloud Gait

Hey lovelies!

Just when you thought M.A.C couldn’t get any more flamboyant than their Trolls collection, the cosmetics giant returned with yet another purchase-inducing makeup line that no true beauty hoarders could resist. Get ready to stockpile if you haven’t heard of their collaboration with Chris Chang of Poesia, whose makeup line was launched last May.

Trust me, the entire collection is like a living kaleidoscope..

M.A.C X Chris Chang

M.A.C X Chris Chang

Raised in San Francisco and currently residing in Shanghai, Chris Chang has made a name for herself as China’s most outlandish fashion designer with her colourful, bold and intricate silk screen prints on her clothing.

The former General Manager of Prada Taiwan studied fashion design at Parsons (one of the top design schools in the world) and started out designing for young girls aged 4-14 on the principle that there should be no distinction between children and adult fashion. It was only after she was swamped with requests for adult-sized versions of her designs that she ventured into women’s wear with Poesia.

Poesia proved to be a huge success as it earned a string of loyal (high-profile) customers and was even showcased at the Shanghai Fashion Week. Since scoring this prestigious collaboration with M.A.C, I’m sure it has garnered a new cadre of colour-loving fans (one being myself) who had previously not heard of Chris Chang. For those who are interested to find more about her work, perhaps Googling her Chinese name (张文轩) would generate more results.

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipsticks

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipsticks

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipsticks

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipsticks

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipsticks

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipsticks

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipsticks

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipsticks

Like each piece of clothing from the Poesia fashion line, this collection emanates a fresh burst of colours inspired by one of the oldest performance arts from China, Kunqu, that adorns lavishly exaggerated makeup and costumes characterised by a “very specific, avant-garde look”.

Using silk screen print, the packaging features a collage of icons, symbols, and illustrations that Chang has used in her past collections. According to reports, it was no mean feat trying to glue over shapes smoothly as no makeup brands had ever done a packaging design as intricate as this. Clearly, the creative team’s effort paid off because everyone fell head over heels for the gorgeous packaging 😍😍😍 Never mind if you missed out on the Giambattista Valli collection, or the overpriced Guo Pei lipsticks. This collection is heaps better in aesthetic value, yet very reasonably priced (in USD). It is essentially a collector’s must-have. Buy it now or regret it later!

#1 Dddevilish

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Dddevilish (US$20 / S$37)

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Dddevilish (US$20 / S$37)

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Dddevilish

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Dddevilish

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Dddevilish

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Dddevilish

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Dddevilish

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Dddevilish

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Dddevilish

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Dddevilish

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Dddevilish

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Dddevilish

Dddevilish is described as a pastel hot pink with Matte finish. It does not tug at lips and applies opaque even on the first swipe, but with slight inconsistency (which can be easily touched up with additional application) and somewhat chalky texture. Although marketed as matte, the formula feels moist and also reflects light so the lipstick does not appear flat on the lips. The downside of such non-drying lipstick formula, however, is its poor staying power. It doesn’t require a lot of effort to remove unlike those M.A.C mattes released before the reformulation.

M.A.C X Chris Chang Dddevilish lipstick swatch comparison

M.A.C X Chris Chang Dddevilish lipstick swatch comparison

#2 Gold XIXI

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Gold XIXI (US$20 / S$37)

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Gold XIXI (US$20 / S$37)

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Gold XIXI

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Gold XIXI

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Gold XIXI

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Gold XIXI

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Gold XIXI

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Gold XIXI

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Gold XIXI

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Gold XIXI

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Gold XIXI

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Gold XIXI

As one who isn’t at all a fan of light lipstick shades with sheer and glossy finishes, getting a pastel lemony yellow lipstick in the form of Gold XIXI, complete with my least favourite M.A.C finish to boot (i.e. Lustre), is certainly looking for trouble. But I was drawn to the fact that yellow lipsticks are hard to come by and having missed the sale of Playland (released before my love for makeup blossomed into permanence), that sense of yearning for a yellow lipstick roared back to life when I saw first pictures of Gold XIXI.

That said, I was quite prepared to be disappointed by it. After all, there seems to be no pastel lipsticks solid enough to provide a long-lasting and richly-pigmented wash of colour. They either result to a glittery mess or not show up on my lips at all. Yet, I had an inkling this was going to be different. So I took a gamble and hoped for the best.

But all expectations dashed upon the first application of the lipstick. Sheer with the yellow pigment hardly visible, Gold XIXI felt like a reminiscent of M.A.C’s past failure in creating a decent pastel lipstick. *sigh* Not wanting to pass a verdict so prematurely, I glided it over my lips the second time, and then the third, and the fourth, and gradually the pigment intensified to become the golden hue you see above. WOWZERS MAN, was anyone anticipating this? It’s surprisingly vivid for a Lustre! It may not be as opaque as I had hoped but I was truly impressed by the payoff 👏👏👏We finally have a yellow lipstick that applies like a true yellow! YIPPEH.

Of course, it’s still far from perfect. The lipstick appears very streaky on the lips, no thanks to the unevenly-dispersed pigment and the super glossy texture. It settles into my lip lines like craaaazy and budges as soon as the upper and lower lips meet. Eh, what’s the point of wearing lipstick if it’s going to make you look better without it? 🤔 Nonetheless, it lends a pretty comfy wear.

M.A.C X Chris Chang Gold XIXI lipstick swatch comparison

M.A.C X Chris Chang Gold XIXI lipstick swatch comparison

#3 Plum Princess

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Plum Princess (US$20 / S$39)

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Plum Princess (US$20 / S$39)

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Plum Princess

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Plum Princess

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Plum Princess

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Plum Princess

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Plum Princess

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Plum Princess

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Plum Princess

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Plum Princess

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Plum Princess

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Plum Princess

My favourite shade from this collection, Plum Princess is described as a pastel plummy lavender with Matte finish. It goes on mostly opaque and evenly coats the lips in saturated, never-seen-before shade of universally flattering smokey purple (how rare!). It lends a soft but sultry vibe without bordering on looking too goth as it also brings out the eye makeup.

The dryness of the matte formula can be felt in Plum Princess as it skips and tugs a bit upon application but on the whole, it is still creamier and more hydrating than the older matte formula and even has a slight sheen to it. It felt more like a Satin. Furthermore, it does not slide into the mouth creases as much as Dddevilish. Love it!

M.A.C X Chris Chang Plum Princess lipstick swatch comparison

M.A.C X Chris Chang Plum Princess lipstick swatch comparison

#4 Cloud Gait

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Cloud Gait (US$20 / S$37)

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Cloud Gait (US$20 / S$37)

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Cloud Gait

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Cloud Gait

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Cloud Gait

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Cloud Gait

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Cloud Gait

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Cloud Gait

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Cloud Gait

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Cloud Gait

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Cloud Gait

M.A.C X Chris Chang of Poesia lipstick in Cloud Gait

We have seen plenty of reds and nudes from M.A.C. Now, how about a sky blue for a change? Apart from the captivating packaging that this collection is housed in, Cloud Gait was another key factor that landed the entire makeup line on my watch list as I had seen Chris Chang wearing a blue lipstick in the promotional video and thought it looked really amazing.

Argh, stop toying with my feelings, M.A.C!

Argh, stop toying with my feelings, M.A.C!

Since this was the promotional video for her collaboration with M.A.C, it’s only natural to assume that she was wearing Cloud Gait, right? Maybe, except that more colourant was probably added to the lipstick to make it seem more vibrant and pigmented because in reality, this pastel turquoise Lustre is a patchy nightmare with incredibly poor colour payoff. If you ask me, the actual Cloud Gait is a failed attempt in integrating lipstick and gloss and it’s gross. In comparison to Gold XIXI, the latter offers better coverage and a more uniform application, though both share similar lightweight texture and longevity.

Some points to note, though – this shouldn’t be used like a normal lipstick. When drawn across the lips laterally, it settles into the fine lines and leaves a very streaky and almost-invisible finish. But the lipstick deposits more colour when the dab-and-go technique is used instead (like seriously, ain’t nobody got time fo dat). Still, no amount of dabbing is able to conceal those unsightly inconsistencies unless you mix in your own pigment (such as eye shadow).

So, the bottom line is: Cloud Gait (as it is) is trash 😒

But on the whole, I’m quite satisfied with the quality of the lipsticks!

What do you think? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

Thanks for reading 🎈

M.A.C X Chris Chang was released on MACCosmetics.com and in Singapore in May 2016. Although The collection is no longer available at M.A.C Cosmetics, it still is on Nordstrom and (probably) in resale market. Grab ’em (the mattes, obviously) before they’re gone for good!

REVIEW: MAC x Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC & Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

Oh hey, it’s the fourth day of the Lunar New Year! 恭喜发财 everyone!

It was just a little more than a month ago since Mariah Carey released her second holiday collection with M.A.C Cosmetics. This time, the line boasted a full range of products bursting with more bling than ever.

M.A.C X Mariah Carey for Holiday 2016

M.A.C X Mariah Carey for Holiday 2016

Thanks to the lovely folks at M.A.C Cosmetics Singapore, I had the privilege to preview the collection before it was even launched online (and in stores). I don’t know how much poorer I would have become if not for this opportunity to swatch the products I initially wanted to get..

The entire M.A.C X Mariah Carey Holiday 2016 collection in Singapore

The entire M.A.C X Mariah Carey Holiday 2016 collection in Singapore

This collection, as well as the price tags, is rather massive. I had my eyes set on one of the eye shadow palettes, the eye shader brush, the highlighter and two lipsticks but figured that they would set me back more than S$200.

Anyway, here’s close-up on the lipsticks since this is probably what you’re expecting from a lipstick-centric beauty blog 😄 :

All M.A.C X Mariah Carey Holiday 2016 lipsticks

All M.A.C X Mariah Carey Holiday 2016 lipsticks

All M.A.C X Mariah Carey Holiday 2016 lipstick swatches

All M.A.C X Mariah Carey Holiday 2016 lipstick swatches

Off-putting Cremesheens and barely-there nudes, the lipsticks in this collection are SO NOT my cup of tea 🙄 The payoff of the Cremesheens, to say the least, was unspeakably sheer and light. The only redeeming quality of the lipstick line in this collection are the Frost lipsticks, out of which one I already own – All I Want. It is a repromote from M.A.C’s first holiday-themed collection with Mariah Carey in 2015 and no changes were made to the formula. You may refer to my review of it here if you’re interested!

And finally, this was what I got after narrowing down my choices..

As you can tell, my shopping list shrunk more than twofold

As you can tell, my shopping list shrunk more than twofold

Besides the need to pay royalties, product packaging conceptualisation probably accounts for another bulk of the price. The items in this collection are luxuriously decked out in silver glitter and reflective champagne gold, and topped off with the mega superstar’s coveted signature, not forgetting the iconic butterfly logo emblazoned on every lipstick bullet. Nonetheless, in spite of the cost, it was still a sold-out collection (apparently gone within the first day) that left many people begging for a restock (which ain’t happening, unfortunately)!

Did M.A.C’s sales pick up due to the star power of Mariah Carey or was there another beauty breakthrough in this collection?

#1 I Get So OOC Lipstick

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC (US$20 / S$39)

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC (US$20 / S$39)

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC

Taking cues from Jay-Z who casually suggested that Mariah include some of her slanguage in her music, M.A.C injects some “MCizzle” into this collaboration by naming the darkest lipstick shade after one of her tracks from her eleventh studio album E=MC².

I Get So OOC (which stands for Out Of Control) is described as a shimmering brown with Frost finish but looks more like a fusion of red and brown in real life. It does not pull or tug at the lips and it leaves a wax-like finish akin to gloss, minus the tackiness. The colour payoff is sheer but buildable with a lightweight and emollient consistency. The golden shimmers are evenly spread out across the lips without settling into the lip lines. The lipstick itself, however, is not transfer-proof and can be removed easily with just a touch of a wet wipe. This shade complements all skin tones 🙂

M.A.C X Mariah Carey I Get So OOC lipstick swatch comparison

M.A.C X Mariah Carey I Get So OOC lipstick swatch comparison

M.A.C has always been my go-to brand for lipsticks, so much so that I would zoom in straight on the lipsticks and pay no attention to the other products whenever they launch a new collection. But this time around, something else managed to steal the spotlight from the lipsticks which are already very eye-catching by themselves with all the glitzy, diamanté-looking packaging.

And that’s none other than the highlighter!

#2 My Mimi Extra Dimension Skinfinish

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi (US$45.50 / S$60)

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi (US$45.50 / S$60)

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi (plastic protector)

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi (plastic protector)

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

Truth be told, I was debating real hard whether I should fork out for this gorgeous highlighter because not only is it expensive, it also costs more online than it does in local M.A.C store after the exchange (*gasp*). But knowing that I wouldn’t be able to make it for the launch here that weekend (the collection was available exclusively at ION outlet only), I jumped at the chance to shop the collection online once it was released to Devoted and Obsessed members.

My Mimi is a warm gold shimmer liquid-powder highlighter. Sculpted to look like Mariah Carey’s face that is instantly recognisable from her distinctive mole next to her voluptuous lips, the surface is deliberately made uneven to enable the brush to pick up just the right amount of product. You certainly do not want to look like a disco ball, do you?

The payoff is moderately pigmented – the first sweep gives a luminous effect to the skin without the gold pigment and it takes two to three applications for pigment to show up on my skin (or rather, on camera), which is great for amateur highlighter users like me who may not have applied it correctly the first time (because somehow or other I’m not able to tell where light naturally hits my face).

 

BEFORE: M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

BEFORE: M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

Use a fan brush if you own one for a more even and precise application. I have been searching high and low for a good fan brush but brands I patronise either do not stock them or have discontinued them (why, though?!). Recommendations, anyone?

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

AFTER: M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

AFTER: M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

AFTER: M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

AFTER: M.A.C X Mariah Carey Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

This may be my first time using a highlighter from M.A.C but I’m actually owner to a couple of face-illuminating products – be it in liquid or powder form – from other brands prior to this purchase. One common problem with the highlighters I currently have is that they tend to accentuate my pores and put a lot more emphasis on my rough blemished skin. While I can’t say that this highlighter doesn’t do all that, it does a better job in accenting my cheekbones and the bridge of my nose without making me moon-faced. The shimmers are well-distributed even on bumpy areas and the fact that the gold pigment complements my skin tone also helps in lending my skin a natural sun-kissed complexion.

AFTER: M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC & Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

AFTER: M.A.C X Mariah Carey Lipstick in I Get So OOC & Extra Dimension Skinfinish in My Mimi

Having said the above, I don’t think this collection deserves the amount of hype it got. I believe M.A.C has rolled out similar shades for all the products and honestly, the lipstick finishes are nothing to write home about. Now, answering my own question posed in the beginning of this review, the popularity of this collection is definitely driven by the fact that it is fronted by a highly successfully and critically-acclaimed international superstar. Fantastic choice of celebrity to partner with, M.A.C!

Do you agree with me? Let me know in the comments below!

Thanks for reading! ❤

M.A.C x Mariah Carey for Holiday 2016 is now available on MACCosmetics.com. Most of the products are already sold out but some are pretty much still available on the Canadian site as well as macy’s. Happy hunting!

REVIEW: Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipsticks – Virginity, Queen Bee, Nude Beach, Watermelon Soda & 714

Hello everyone!

Jeffree Star is no stranger to controversy, having been very vocal about his opinions on his social media accounts. Perhaps his forthrightness – on top of his talent in makeup artistry and music – was what propelled him to superstar status on the internet. Despite his popularity, he holds no reservations in publicly ridiculing other high-profile celebrities such as Kylie Jenner, whom he lashed out for the poor quality of her lip gloss applicator when they first came out so very naturally, he was regarded as the voice for the beauty community whose passion for make-up has so often been taken advantage of by big beauty brands.

But things can get even uglier when the tables are turned. Not long after the whole Kylie Cosmetics hooha, Jeffree Star found himself embroiled in a yet another feud, but this time with former BFF Kat Von D, just a few days shy of the release of his summer collection last July. With his credibility undoubtedly affected by Kat Von D’s claims of plagiarism claims against him, his Velour Liquid Lipstick sales took a hit despite all the hype around them on Instagram in the weeks leading up to the launch, thereby prompting Jeffree Star to remove the limit on the number of lipsticks each customer can purchase. Beautylish (an authorised Jeffree Star vendor) had to also slash the price of the bundle in half Labour Day to get them to move.

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick Summer Collection 2016

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick Summer Collection 2016

But were people shunning the summer collection solely because of the scandal? Or were there other underlying reasons such as poor quality control that led to such drastic sales decline? Seeing that not a single shade was sold out one week into the launch, I bought the bundle to test the lipsticks out for myself.

And yes, I paid full price with shipping for this. If only I had sat on buying the bundle a little longer… *sigh*

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick Summer Collection 2016

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick Summer Collection 2016

Aptly wrapped in eye-catching yellow packaging and infused with a refreshing watermelon scent to remind you of the popular summer punch, the theme of this collection is unmistakable. It stands out from the multitude of summer-themed collections in the market (go Google “makeup summer collection” and you will know what I mean) simply because the five shades picked out exclusively for this line are finally not of the same ol’ pink and coral hues… *yawn*

Here, I see a bold yellow as striking as the sun, a vibrant beige as inviting as sandy beaches and a violet like the colour of perennials that bloom even more brilliantly in summer. These shades are oh-so-relevant to the season!

#1 Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Virginity

Virginity is described as a soft lilac but dries down completely to a pale purple with slight grey undertone matte. It runs smoothly on the lips and it is sufficiently pigmented to give an opaque finish in a single swipe. The texture feels powdery and drying so it cracks instantly upon movement of the lips. The cracks are more visible on dry lips so lip exfoliation is a must.

Don’t fancy getting roasted under the hot sun but yearn to be tan? Well, this shade is able to help to a certain extent as it makes the skin appear tanner.

Jeffree Star Virginity swatch comparison

Jeffree Star Virginity swatch comparison

While some of the colours in this collection may not be suitable for everyday wear alone, they can be mixed with other lipsticks to create customised colours. As liberal as I am, I am certainly not ready to parade the town in unusually bright lipstick colours just yet, and I am one of the lazy sort who can’t be bothered to tailor-make my make-up. So what do I do with my unconventional lipstick shades? I use them to create lip art!

Virginity as the main colour for my Ditto lip art (other shades include Kylie Cosmetics' Kourt K, Jeffree Star's Drug Lord and Nude Beach)

Virginity as the main colour for my Ditto lip art (other shades include Kylie Cosmetics’ Kourt K, Jeffree Star’s Drug Lord and Nude Beach for the mouth)

The whole lip art experience proved to be a lot more fun than I thought.

I spent close to 30 minutes on this one. And to think that I said I was lazy. Hmm.

Virginity is still available on JeffreeStarCosmetics.com for US$7.99.

#2 Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Queen Bee

Queen Bee is the first yellow liquid lipstick in the market, as claimed by Jeffree Star. It is a vibrant canary yellow upon application but becomes one tone lighter when it dries down. This shade was my main deciding factor in getting the summer bundle (as buying just one product would not justify paying for the shipping fee) because, as common as this colour seems for apparels and household products, yellow lipsticks with this degree of pigmentation and vibrancy is virtually unheard of. Furthermore, I didn’t have a yellow liquid lipstick in my stash so this would be a perfect addition to my spectrum of liquid lipstick colours.

Packed a powerful punch in the colour department, Queen Bee is exactly what you see in pictures, except that it appears streakier and less consistent in coverage than expected. The fresher coats of lipstick can easily be told apart from the older ones because they don’t blend well together, resulting in those unsightly horizontal strokes as seen in the above lip swatches. Therefore, the first application has to be absolutely even for the payoff to be uniform. The finish isn’t entirely opaque as some parts of my natural lip colour can still be seen peeking through the lipstick. It feels a little drying and leaves a tacky finish when dried down.

I immediately thought of doing a Pikachu lip art the moment I saw swatches of Queen Bee before it was even launched

I immediately thought of doing a Pikachu lip art the moment I saw swatches of Queen Bee before it was even launched

Besides creating lip art, Queen Bee can also be used with pink and red liquid lipsticks to create a sunset lip ombré, something like Laneige’s Juicy Pop but more vivid and in liquid lipstick form.

Despite all the flaws mentioned, I think Queen Bee deserves a permanent spot in Jeffree Star’s lipstick lineup just because yellow liquid lipsticks are a rare find.

#3 Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Nude Beach

Nude Beach is Jeffree Star’s rendition of macaroni and cheese nude, a pale peach matte. This is the only shade which I notice dries down to the exact colour as the product in the tube. But like most light-coloured liquid lipsticks, one swipe of Nude Beach is not opaque enough to mask the natural colour of the lips. It does not apply evenly and the texture is too runny to be able to stay in place when I try to add more coats of the lipstick. Furthermore, I’m not impressed with the streaky texture and tacky finish (even after leaving it to dry). Instead of hugging the lips like a second skin, the lipstick feels like a burdensome layer of paint which I very much look forward to remove every time.

Echoing what Jeffree Star said in his introductory video, however, this is one of the few light shades which works for every skin tone due to its gorgeous warm undertone that prevents it from washing the palest skin out while making lips on dark skin tone “pop” in a flattering way. I personally feel it complements Asian skin tone the most. Really too bad for the poor quality.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Jeffree Star Nude Beach swatch comparison

Nude Beach is still available on JeffreeStarCosmetics.com for US$7.99.

#4 Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Watermelon Soda

Since watermelons are one of the iconic fruits of summer, it makes perfect sense to dedicate a liquid lipstick from the summer line to the red and green fruit! Fittingly named Watermelon Soda, this rich salmon-toned coral not only resembles the colour of the juicy red watermelon flesh but also smells like the taste of it (yeah, just like the other lipsticks in this collection but this just feels more appropriate, you get what I mean?).

It applies smoothly on the lips and lends a fairly pigmented finish with some negligible patchiness quite unnoticeable from a distance. It dries to a soft reddish-pink matte that does not suck every ounce of moisture from the lips. It is prone to transfers as it still feels slightly tacky after several minutes of wear.

#5 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in 714

Named after the area code of Orange County in California where Jeffree Star was born, 714 was first launched in 2015 but was quickly discontinued after several complaints about the formula surfaced. It was said to be poorly formulated and extremely blotchy. But as the saying goes, ‘One man’s meat is another man’s poison’ – while there were critics who thought 714 was the “worst lip product” they had ever come across, there were also hardcore fans who swore by it. After 714 was taken off the shelves, resale prices for this prized lipstick rocketed and people were pleading Jeffree Star to bring it back.

Fast forward one year, this coral-toned pink made a comeback in a different packaging but the formula remains as horrendous as when it first came out. It has poor colour payoff and the runny and streaky texture means that it would be impossible to distribute the lipstick evenly on the lips. The lipstick budges and does not seem to dry down completely, making it a whole lot more difficult to build. It is tacky and very prone to transfers. The only good out of this substandard liquid lipstick formula is probably its lightweight. This lipstick is so bad, it deserves to be shelved forever.

Jeffree Star Watermelon Soda and 714 swatch comparison

Jeffree Star Watermelon Soda and 714 swatch comparison

714 is the only shade in this collection not infused with watermelon scent (as Jeffree Star explained that adding fragrance would change the colour of the lipstick).

All in all, the summer collection was a huge letdown mainly because all the lipsticks are of light shades and as many of you know, light lipstick shades often turn out to be streaky. Nonetheless, this is not what I would expect from a perfectionist who has no qualms about calling labels out over quality issues. He clearly knew about all these issues (since he had talked about them in his videos), but had still gone ahead with production. Things are always easier said than done, huh?

What say you? Chime away in the comments below!

Thanks for reading! 🙂

The limited edition Jeffree Star summer collection was available at JeffreeStarCosmetics.com and Beautylish for US$18 per lipstick and US$75 per bundle. Some shades may still be available on both websites for heavily discounted prices.

REVIEW: MAC x Charlotte Olympia Lipsticks – Starlett Scarlet, Leading Lady Red & Retro Rouge

HAPPY 2017 EVERYONE!!!

It may already be the new year, but I still have a colossal amount of long-overdue beauty reviews that I would like to share so please bear with me while I take you back in time to March 2016 when M.A.C launched a collection of runway-inspired red lipsticks alongside other lip and eye products and accessories with Charlotte Olympia.

mac-charlotte-olympia

In case you didn’t know who Charlotte Olympia is, she is a young British luxury shoe and accessories designer who  founded her own eponymous fashion brand. You would probably have seen her products if you shop often at high-end online boutiques such as Net-A-Porter and Ssense, or even her retail stores in Bangkok, Hong Kong as well as many other cities.

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick packaging

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick packaging

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick packaging

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick packaging

When first pictures of the limited-edition lipstick packaging were released via news outlets, it drew mixed reactions in the beauty community. While there were those who thought the the packaging was a breath of fresh air from M.A.C’s classic black dome-shaped cap packaging, a handful of beauty critics expressed their displeasure online over the see-through plastic exterior of the lipstick tube. Many felt that the poor choice of material made the supposedly opulent-looking lipsticks seem cheap like a drugstore product.

For me, I belong to the camp that adores the packaging. The clear, sturdy plastic exterior that deliberately reveals the gold inner tube (a far cry from those that it was being compared to – like the old Neutrogena MoistureShine lipstick packaging – which very apparently used lousier and more brittle plastic and did not conceal the glue that adheres the lipstick to the tube as cleverly as M.A.C did) exudes a sense of luxury and prestige. I like that every product in this collection is adorned with Charlotte Olympia’s signature gold spider web motif instead of just boringly stating the name on them. Perhaps because my interest in makeup came at the time when beauty brands had already stepped up their packaging game due to immense competition, I had never seen anything like that in Singapore so it definitely stood out for me.

#1 Starlett Scarlet

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Starlett Scarlet (US$18)

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Starlett Scarlet (US$18)

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Starlett Scarlet

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Starlett Scarlet

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Starlett Scarlet

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Starlett Scarlet

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Starlett Scarlet

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Starlett Scarlet

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Starlett Scarlet

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Starlett Scarlet

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Starlett Scarlet

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Starlett Scarlet

Brighten your smile with Starlett Scarlet, a true red with Matte finish. Unlike most M.A.C mattes, it has a slippery application with an incredibly intense colour payoff at the very first swipe, topped with a natural sheen to give that luscious luminosity. The highly opaque formulation conceals lip lines fairly well and does not seep into major cracks and thus, lip exfoliation is not necessary. Moisturising, it does not leave the lip feeling parched. Although matte, it has a creamy texture which allows colour blending (if you don’t want to go full-red lip) and yet has relatively high staying power.

#2 Leading Lady Red

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Leading Lady Red (US$18)

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Leading Lady Red (US$18)

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Leading Lady Red

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Leading Lady Red

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Leading Lady Red

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Leading Lady Red

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Leading Lady Red

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Leading Lady Red

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Leading Lady Red

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Leading Lady Red

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Leading Lady Red

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Leading Lady Red

Leading Lady Red is described as a deep red with Matte finish. As compared to Starlett Scarlet, this is slightly darker with cooler blue undertones. It does not apply as buttery and would occasionally tug at the lips but the excellent pigmentation and coverage of the colour compensate for that negligible flaw. The slight sheen of the lipstick gives the impression of hydrated lips but in actual fact, it feels slightly dry and heavy which could also be the main reason for its more lasting longevity.

#3 Retro Rouge

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Retro Rouge

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Retro Rouge

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Retro Rouge

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Retro Rouge

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Retro Rouge

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Retro Rouge

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Retro Rouge

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Retro Rouge

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Retro Rouge

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Retro Rouge

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Retro Rouge

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick in Retro Rouge

The darkest red in this collection is Retro Rouge, a cool-toned deep brown-red with Matte finish, but it is also the most underperforming and least matte out of the trio of lipsticks, sadly. For a start, it has a little drag to it during application which feels as though my lips are being lightly rubbed against. Some of the products settle into my lip lines, causing the colour to lose its overall uniformity (as you can see from dark streaks around the center). This colour isn’t smudge-proof for sure as it fades when I purse my lips and thereby leaving a rather obvious ring of lighter red shade on the area of contact. Nevertheless, it delivers full opacity to give an alluring and satiny pout.

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick swatch comparison 1

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick swatch comparison 1

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick swatch comparison 2, because these lipsticks reminded me of the Rocky Horror Picture Show collection

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia lipstick swatch comparison 2, because these lipsticks reminded me of the Rocky Horror Picture Show collection

On the overall, I think this collection offers one of the best range of reds M.A.C has ever produced even though the colours and finish are very repetitive. They are very true to what you see on the bullet and in spite of the pretty packaging (that M.A.C surprisingly did not charge a lot more for), the quality of the product was not discounted as you can tell from the excellent colour payoff and luxurious and mostly creamy finish of every lipstick.

This line has already been discontinued but I’m certain you can readily find them in resale markets like eBay or Carousell. The last time I checked, the listed prices were lower than the sale price. If you don’t already have reds like any of these (which is highly unlikely as they are very dupable), you should go for it!

What are your thoughts on the lipsticks in this collection in terms of the product quality and packaging? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below! 🙂

Thanks for reading and have an AWESOME new year ahead! ❤

M.A.C X Charlotte Olympia was launched in March 2016 and is no longer available online.

REVIEW: MAC x Halsey Lipstick in Halsey

Hello everyone!

It is not uncommon for beauty brands to roll out sales promotions on International Women’s Day to allow us ladies to pamper ourselves without feeling much of a pinch. This year, however, M.A.C took a different approach in celebrating women’s achievements by teaming up with four female artistes – Tinashe, Halsey, Lion Babe and Dej Loaf – who are dynamically impacting the music industry in a series of exclusive collaborations, launched one after another throughout the month of March.

Titled Future Forward, the campaign empowered each of these female visionaries to create a product that best represents them. As one who clearly hasn’t been following the pop culture of late (it must be the age), none of these names rang a bell for me so I supported the one with the lipstick, obviously! 😄

Halsey is an American singer-songwriter best known for her guest vocals on the Chainsmokers’ hit song ‘Closer’. Even though she debuted in 2015 and had been touring with popular acts such as The Kooks and Imagine Dragons, she didn’t quite gain traction until her explicit cover of Justin Biebers ‘Love Yourself” went viral a year later. Apart from her music, people like her because of her badass attitude too. You go girl!

And did you know that ‘Halsey’ is only a stage name derived from a rearrangement of the letters of her first name, Ashley? Cool.

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey packaging

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey packaging

Decked out in a limited-edition electric blue box with a stylised ‘Halsey’ printed on, the packaging stands out from the sea of black in the temporary storage space where I keep most of my M.A.C lipsticks.

“[Blue is] just my creative color. It’s like so many things at once. It’s electric, and it’s bright, but it’s also calm. It’s also ethereal. Blue is just an otherworldly color to me. Blue is the sky. Blue is the sea. Blue for me represents the unexplored territory.”

– Halsey’s interview with Complex magazine in July 2015

But the artwork ends there. All sense of exclusivity vanishes the moment the lipstick is taken out of the box. The lipstick tube itself did not receive any creative treatment so it looks just like any other regular M.A.C lipstick without the box. So basic.

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey lipstick

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey lipstick

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey lipstick

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey lipstick

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey lipstick

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey lipstick

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey lipstick

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey lipstick

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey lipstick

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey lipstick

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey lipstick

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey lipstick

Thanks to Halsey, there’s finally a M.A.C lipstick shade which I can safely proclaim I don’t have a dupe for. I’m so glad Halsey didn’t go ape over her inspiration colour and opted for a blue lipstick which is so been there, done that.

Breaking away from the usual reds and pinks from M.A.C is Halsey, a true grey with matte finish. It is an edgy shade that can also be used alongside another colour to create a beautiful gradient lip. It is quite drying, though, so it tugs at the lips. Be sure to exfoliate your lips before application as it will accentuate any dry patches. Further, It doesn’t give a seamless application when I run the bullet over my lips, leaving certain areas look unevenly applied. The finish is mostly opaque but not flat matte as there’s some slight sheen to it. I say this shade complements fair skin tone very well!

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey swatch comparison

M.A.C Fashion Forward x Halsey swatch comparison

Since Halsey is my first grey lipstick, I don’t have other greys to compare it with (I do have ColourPop’s Petit Four, though, but it’s an entirely different finish). The swatches above serve as a rough gauge of how dark or light Halsey is in real life.

*UPDATED* M.A.C Halsey swatch comparison with other similar-looking liquid lipstick shades, as requested by a reader. This is under artificial lighting.

*UPDATED* M.A.C Halsey swatch comparison with other similar-looking liquid lipstick shades, as requested by a reader. This is under artificial lighting.

In case you’re wondering, M.A.C isn’t the first to launch a grey lipstick. A couple of beauty brands like ColourPop (Petit Four), Melt (Space Cake) and Inglot (Matte 436) are already ahead of the game but their grey lipsticks are nowhere as concrete-grey as this. Despite all the shortcomings mentioned about this lipstick, I still think this is a worthy buy because the colour is DOPE, true to what you see on the bullet and it is matte (not some Lustre crap).

To be the sole survivor from the Fashion Forward collection (the rest had already been taken down), it must be something, right? Perhaps that’s why M.A.C hasn’t been very eager to clear out the inventory of this lipstick with a substantial discount like what they did to some limited-edition lipsticks 😉

What are your thoughts on Halsey the lipstick?

Thanks for reading! ❤

M.A.C Future Forward X Halsey is an online-exclusive and is available on MACCosmetics.com for US$17 for a limited time.