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Hello again! This post was supposed to be up like two days ago but I decided to get all creative and try to change the layout on here and TOTALLY messed everything up, so that took forever to fix… My bad!

Anyway, the Kat Von D Shade + Light Contour Palette has been out for a little while now, but I just got it about two weeks ago… I’ve been using it the whole time so I’ve been able to do lots of testing and I really dig it! It works well for fair to medium dark skin tones, depending on how deep and defined you like your contour to be. It’s really well pigmented, so I would say it could be used by anyone up to about a MAC NC42-45, though I haven’t been able to try it out on anyone else just yet. All of these colors have a matte to natural matte/almost satin finish, which I’ll go into more detail about in the individual reviews. The contour shades in this palette aren’t terribly warm or orange/bronze, making them perfect for even the lightest of skin tones! I’m a MAC NC15, so it’s usually difficult for me to find the perfect contour color but this palette works well… The highlight colors are neutral, warm, and cool, and the colors sort of transform, depending on your squinting, so you can use them on different areas of the face, especially using a slightly warmer tone under the eyes to set your concealer and help to further brighten and correct any darkness. I’ll explain in the review for each color where I like to use them, and for which skin tones they’re ideal for!

Side note: As soon as my lighting gets here and I play around with my editing software, I’ll be making a highlight and contour video, so I can show you my techniques for using a highlight and contour palette like this! SO EXCITING!

Shade + Light Face Palette 1

This is a powder highlight and contour palette, so it’s easy to use and blend out, especially if you’re just getting into highlighting and contouring. You’ll want to use these after you’ve applied the rest of your face makeup, but before your blush… I usually like to do my liquids and creams, then setting powder, then contour/bronzer, highlight, then blush. While it’s not a huge deal if you do the highlight before or after blush, you want to do your contour first so you can blend your blush back into the line of the contour color, softening it and making everything look more natural. To apply the contour shades, I like to use something like a MAC 109, Sigma F05, or Real Techniques Contour Brush… You want a brush that’s dense and slightly tapered or round enough to fit into the hollows of your cheeks, but soft enough to swirl around and blend with. If you find that either one of those are too intense for you, you can also try an angled face brush like a MAC 168. I know a lot of people who use that to contour with, and I used to use the 168, but now I prefer it for blush! To me, it’s just bigger and more difficult to control when I want a more defined contour, but it will give it a more diffused look if you aren’t wanting too much intensity… To contour your nose, try something smaller, like a MAC 224 or 217 eye shadow brush. For the highlighters, you’ll want to use something fluffier and less dense like a MAC 165 (discontinued… sad face), Sigma F35 (same as the 165), or a Real Techniques Setting Brush. You can also use a MAC 224 for smaller areas like your nose, cupid’s bow, or under the eye if you just need a light dusting of product.

The packaging for this palette is nice and is made of a heavyweight, matte black, cardboard-ish stuff, just like the Contour Kit from Anastasia Beverly Hills… Now if you’re like me and you mainly keep this in a drawer or makeup bag, packaging isn’t a big concern because it’s safely stowed away and will be handled with care. However, if you are using this in a professional makeup kit or travel a lot and might be tossing this palette around, it may not hold up as well. While the packaging itself and magnets that hold it together are sturdy, it might get a little beat up and not stay closed if it takes too much torture. One major plus with this packaging is the mirror… It’s big and not the cheap, plastic stuff that gets scuffed up and cracks, so you can easily see that beautiful face of yours! On the front it has “Shade + Light” in shiny black with a silver outline. On the back, it has the names of the colors as they are in the packaging, going left to right (as in the colors don’t match up with what’s in front of it, so it’s backwards I guess?), in silver.

Shade + Light Contour Palette Packaging Front

Shade + Light Contour Palette Packaging Back

The Shade + Light Contour Palette is permanent and is available exclusively at Sephora and through Sephora’s website. It sells for $36, though the Kat Von D website says $36-$46? (Not sure why)… It contains a grand total of 20.4g / 0.72 oz of product, with each highlight color being 2.3g / 0.08oz and each contour color being 4.5g / 0.16oz. MAC’s Sculpt and Shape powders (available online and at PRO stores), as well as their blushes, contain 6g / 0.17 oz and sell for $17 each in the refill pan form, so you get more for your money with this palette, but you don’t get as much of each color as you would if you just bought it individually in the form of Sculpt and Shape powders or blushes from MAC. Since you can get the MAC powders for contouring and highlighting individually, you may want to do that if you don’t feel like you’ll use 6 different colors, plus you can get any of them in palette form and pop them into your blush palette, making them just as easy to store and travel with. Personally, I like having a few options for contour and highlight colors, but as I mentioned, I use different ones on different areas of the face… That may not be something you need or want to do if you’re just starting out, or if you aren’t as much of a makeup hoarder as I am!

Another comparable contour/highlight palette is the one from Anastasia Beverly Hills, which sells for $40 (with or without a pro discount) and contains a total of 18.7g / 0.66oz (each containing 3.12g / 0.11oz), so that makes the Kat Von D Shade + Light Palette a better deal than the ABH Contour Kit. The original (Light to Medium) ABH kit also has a shimmery color for highlighting, while all of the powders in the KVD palette are matte. That said, you can choose three different shades in the Contour Kits available from ABH, so if you prefer to have something a little darker and better suited for your skin tone if you’re ohhhh say a NC30-35+, you might find that one of the ABH palettes is better for you! Also, like MAC, you can buy the contour and highlight powders from ABH individually in a palette refill pan, so you can customize your palette, or just get a couple of shades that you know you’ll use a lot… I do LOVE the Kat Von D Shade + Light palette, though, so for me personally, I would buy this over the ABH version, which you can get at Sephora, from the Anastasia Beverly Hills website, Ulta, and perhaps from Macy’s.

Oooookay that was a LOT more long winded than intended (ha! I made a rhyme), but I want you all to be able to find the perfect contour palette, especially when most are not super cheap. Anyway, I won’t keep the pretty photos from you any longer! Thanks for reading 🙂

Note: Soooo the weird thing about some of these pictures is that the colors look warmer in them than they do when I’m sitting here looking at them in the palette, even though I used really epic lighting when I took these… BUT they actually apply looking like the color they are in the pictures, rather than how they look in person… Gosh, I hope that made sense. Just a random observation… Okay, carry on!

Top: Lucid, Lyric, Levitation Bottom: Sombre, Shadowplay, Subconscious

Top: Lucid, Lyric, Levitation
Bottom: Sombre, Shadowplay, Subconscious

Photo taken outdoors in natural sunlight. Highlighters swatches on NC15 skin.

Photo taken outdoors in natural sunlight.
Highlight powders swatched on NC15 skin.

Lucid

Lucid

Lucid:   This color is described as a “pinky nude” and is a pale, slightly warm toned beige with a pinkish undertone. It has a natural matte finish that’s not completely flat, which makes it work well to brighten the face, including the under eye area. This is the one that I use, being that I’m quite fair and it’s the lightest highlight in this palette. If you’re someone who prefers a cooler, more yellow toned highlight under the eyes like Lyric, you can still use Lucid to highlight other areas of your face like the tops of your cheekbones, nose, chin, etc. I probably wouldn’t use this on anyone deeper than about a NC30, due to the fact that it can wash you out.

The texture of this powder is very smooth and silky, making it easy to apply and blend without it looking too heavy. If you have a drier under eye area, make sure you apply this sparingly, or lightly dust it OVER a translucent setting powder. Even though these highlight powders are incredibly smooth, they’re also a little powdery and super pigmented, so it can emphasize creases under the eyes if your skin is dry or if you have many lines to begin with. Color payoff is warmer than it looks in the palette, but like I said, they’re highly pigmented, so that makes up for the difference in color. Coverage is great and you don’t need to use much product at all. As far as wear time goes, Lucid lasted for over 8 hours before I start to notice any fading, maybe more like 6-7 on the under eye area on days it’s been hot and humid outside.

Dupes:   Vanilla from Anastasia Beverly Hills is a little lighter and less pink. Emphasize Shape Powder from MAC PRO is lighter, not as pigmented (not a bad thing, though), and is a cooler cream color with less pink tones. It also has a more satiny/pearl finish. Ben Nye Cameo Luxury Powder is similar, but a little lighter.

Overall Rating:   4.5 / 5

Application:   4

Coverage:  5

Color Payoff:   4

Texture:   4

Wear Time:   5

Packaging:   5

Lyric

Lyric

Lyric:   Lyric is a “yellow beige”… It’s a light, creamy, yellow beige with neutral to warm undertones (the cooler your skin, the cooler toned this color looks). It has a natural matte, almost satiny finish that’s really nice, especially on the tops of the cheekbones and higher planes of the face. While I can use this color on my cheekbones and to highlight my face, it’s a little too yellow under my eyes. On anyone with skin that’s NC25, maybe even 20, and darker, it would be more suitable to highlight with!

The texture of Lyric felt a little more powdery than Lucid, but it’s still very finely milled and smooth. Color payoff is almost exactly how it looks in the palette and it’s highly pigmented. Coverage is also great. I got about 8 hours of wear with this highlighter.

Dupes:   Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder is a little more yellow and darker, but it’s pretty close. Banana from Anastasia Beverly Hills (part of the original or Light to Medium Contour Kit), is also similar, but is a hint darker. Thank you, Kat Von D, for not naming this color “banana”.

Overall Rating:   4.7 / 5

Application:   4

Coverage:  5

Color Payoff:   5

Texture:   4

Wear Time:   5

Packaging:   5

Levitation

Levitation

Levitation:   This is a “soft peach” and is the deepest of the three highlight colors in this palette… It’s a light peach with warm undertones and a more satiny finish than the other two highlighters, but it’s not satiny to the point of having a noticeable shine, it just looks like naturally glowy skin. While I can’t quite use this under my eyes (it’s a little too dark), I have tried it on my cheekbones, but it’s almost a little warm for a NC15 like myself. This is the perfect color to counteract darkness under the eye and add a beautiful, warm highlight to anyone who is NC25-30 to NC40-NC42ish.

It seems like the more satiny the finish, the more powdery the texture, because Levitation had the most lightweight, powdery feel out of all the highlight colors… Plus side is that it makes it easy to blend and apply lightly, which is perfect for the under eye area. Color payoff is just about how it looks in the pan. Coverage was not as heavy as the other two highlight colors, but it’s super pigmented… That seems like an odd combination, but I promise it makes sense when you try it out! I got around 8 hours of wear before I noticed any fading.

Dupes:   Accentuate Shape Powder from MAC PRO is super close, though maybe a liiiiiitle bit peachier. The texture is very similar, though.

Overall Rating:   4.5 / 5

Application:   4

Coverage:  4

Color Payoff:   5

Texture:   4

Wear Time:   5

Packaging:   5

Photo taken outdoors in natural sunlight. Contour powders swatched on NC15 skin.

Photo taken outdoors in natural sunlight.
Contour powders swatched on NC15 skin.

Sombre

Sombre

Sombre:   This contour is a “true taupe” and is the lightest of the contour shades in the palette… It’s a light cool taupe in the pan, but applies with more neutral to warm undertones. Even though it looks a little warmer on the skin, it has no orange or bronze to it, so it won’t make you look like an oompa-loompa no matter how fair you are! It’s less satiny than the highlight powders in this palette are, but it’s not quite matte… It has more of a natural matte, skin-like finish to it. This is the contour that I use most often… It’s perfect for even the pastiest of pale skin tones (like me) to use all over. Sombre is also great for a nose contour, even if you’re up to an NC35+ or so, because it’s more neutral and lighter than the other two contour shades in this palette, so it won’t look crazy dark and dramatic on your cute little nose!

The contour shades feel slightly less powdery than the highlights in this palette do, but are still silky smooth when applied. I found this texture very easy to blend out with no harsh or noticeable lines to be seen. Color payoff, as I mentioned, is warmer on the skin than it is in the pan, and it’s SUPER pigmented, so don’t go nuts with this right from the start! You can apply a VERY small amount and it will go a long way… That said, if you do accidentally apply more than intended, don’t worry, it blends out really well. I know because I did that the first time I used it haha. Coverage with this shade is wonderful too. Sombre wore for over 8 hours on me before I saw any fading.

Dupes:   Java from Anastasia Beverly Hills is pretty close, maybe a little darker. Harmony blush from MAC is a near perfect dupe. Also from MAC, Taupe blush is slightly cooler toned (which I prefer), but close. Sculpt Sculpt powder from MAC PRO is also similar, but has more neutral to cool undertones.

Overall Rating:   4.8 / 5

Application:   5

Coverage:  5

Color Payoff:   4

Texture:   5

Wear Time:   5

Packaging:   5

Shadowplay

Shadowplay

Shadowplay:   Shadowplay is described as a “soft brown”… It’s a medium, warm toned brown with a natural matte finish. It’s a little more satiny than Sombre is, but still lacks a true sheen. On me, and I would imagine on most people, this shade works best as a subtle bronzer, rather than a true contour. It’s not orange and intense like a lot of bronzers are, which I like, so I mostly use this to add a little bit of color around my hairline on my forehead (or fivehead in my case) and I blend this into my contour color on my cheeks, just so I look like I may have actually been out in the sun for a little while and got some color in my skin! To apply this, I like using a bigger fluffier, tapered bronzing brush like a MAC 138, or you can use an angled contour brush like a MAC 168.

The texture of this contour shade was super smooth and easy to apply. Color payoff is nearly a perfect match to how it looks in the pan, maybe a little warmer once it’s on the skin for some people. Coverage wasn’t as good as the other two contours in this palette, but I’m glad, because the intensity might get a little out of hand and look way too warm if it was as pigmented as the other contours are! I got 7 hours of wear with Shadowplay.

Dupes:   This is sort of in between Java and Havana, both from Anastasia Beverly Hills, and both of which are in the original Light to Medium Contour Kit… Java is lighter and cooler, while Havana is a bit deeper and even warmer/more orange. Shadester Sculpt Powder from MAC PRO is similar, maybe darker and more neutral. Milk Chocolate Soleil Bronzer (Light/Medium) from Too Faced is slightly lighter, but has about the same tone. It’s also more intense, so these two actually look really close on my face anyway.

Overall Rating:   4.5 / 5

Application:   4

Coverage:  4

Color Payoff:   4

Texture:   5

Wear Time:   5

Packaging:   5

Subconscious

Subconscious
This looks a little darker in the photo than it does in person… No clue why.

Subconscious:   This contour is a “deep brown” and has a satin finish… I’m assuming this is because a lot of darker brown powders tend to look dry and unnatural on pretty much anyone’s skin if they’re too matte, so I do love the finish for this color. It’s a dark, chocolate brown with warm undertones. It looks dark, especially in the swatch on my skin, but it’s also extremely blendable, so if you are in need of a darker contour just in the hollows of your cheeks, you can use it as long as you apply it VERY lightly! I actually use this after I apply Sombre, just to deepen the part of my cheek contour closest to my ear. To do so, I use one of the brushes I would normally use to apply my highlight with (MAC 165, Sigma F35, or Real Techniques Setting Brush)… That way, it’s more diffused and not too dramatic. If you have a skintone between about a MAC NC35 and NC45ish, you can probably get away with this as your cheek/face contour as well.

The texture of Subconscious felt the smoothest out of all the contour shades, which is good since it makes it easier to blend out if you make an oops. Color payoff is super close to how it looks in the palette, and coverage was totally opaque with very little product used, so start out light-handed with this one and build it up! Wear time is excellent. I didn’t notice any fading until about 8 and a half hours into having this contour on.

Dupes:   Blunt Blush from MAC is cooler and a bit lighter. Definitive Sculpt Powder from MAC PRO is very similar, though it’s not as pigmented. I believe there is a similar shade from Anastasia Beverly Hills, but I would have to see it again in person to confirm that! It’s not part of any of the three Contour Kits, though.

Overall Rating:   5 / 5

Application:   5

Coverage:  5

Color Payoff:   5

Texture:   5

Wear Time:   5

Packaging:   5

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Although this collection was released about a month ago, some of the items from this MAC & Disney collaboration still seem to be available at most locations… This gorgeous Beauty Powder is one of them! Beauty Powders are one of my favorite products that MAC releases sometimes, so I was super excited when I found out that there would be one released with the Maleficent collection. These are multi-use and this particular color works well on most skin tones… I’ll explain more further into this post, so keep reading 😉

Natural

Natural

Maleficent Beauty Powder 1

Beauty Powders are a super finely milled type of powder that doesn’t quite have shimmer, but has a barely-there pearl effect that gives you a soft, subtle glow anywhere that you apply it. This color, Natural, works best on fair to medium or medium-dark skin tones. I like to use this as a highlighter on the tops of my cheekbones, down the center of my nose, on the center of my forehead just above the brow, and on my cupid’s bow for a gentle type of highlight. I also use this under my eyes to set my concealer and help brighten that area, since this is a perfect pale, peachy pink. You can also use this as an eye shadow, or all over your face if you’d like to add an ethereal type of radiance to your skin. This powder formula is not part of the permanent lineup, but I sure do wish it was! Out of all the products in the Maleficent collection, this is the most unique and usable one, in my opinion. To use this as a highlighter, I suggest a somewhat dense, but fluffy, powder brush like a MAC 116. If you want to apply it more heavily, but still be able to blend it out (like under the eye area), I like to use something smaller and more dense, like a MAC 227 brush.

The packaging for this Beauty Powder is like the rest of the Maleficent collection and has a shiny black plastic with the wings and title logo on the lid. Rather than a clear top, this has a solid lid with a mirror inside. The box is also shiny black and shows the logo.

As I mentioned, Beauty Powders are limited edition, and while this was released on Thursday, May 15th, it’s still available online at www.maccosmetics.com and at most stores and counters that I know of. It contains 10 g / 0.35 US oz of product and sells for $30.

Maleficent Beauty Powder Box

Maleficent Beauty Powder Packaging w Mirror

 

Maleficent Beauty Powder Label

 

Natural

Natural

Photo taken outdoors in natural light on a cloudy day. Beauty Powder swatched on NC20 skin.

Photo taken outdoors in natural light on a cloudy day.
Beauty Powder swatched on NC20 skin.

Natural

Natural

Natural:   This Beauty Powder is a “soft peachy pink” with a natural, but glowing type of finish… It’s a pale, neutral to warm, cream color with peachy pink undertones and an almost satin finish… It’s a finish that looks like your skin, but after you’ve had a facial and a really good run and slathered on some amazing moisturizing and you’re glowing from inside… Does that make any sense at all? I hope so, because it’s so unique it’s difficult to describe haha. The color payoff is true to pan color, but because the coverage is somewhat sheer, it doesn’t turn out so intensely light, making it the perfect highlighter for many skin tones! Wear time is awesome… I use this under my eyes to set my concealer and as a highlighter and either way, I get all day wear with no fading on the face or creasing under the eye area. The texture is amazing too… It feels so incredibly silky and luxurious!

Dupes:   Okay so this is where the bad news is… I can’t find anything permanent, from MAC or any other brands, that seems to compare to the epicness that is Natural Beauty Powder! The closest thing I’ve found is the limited edition Beauty Powder, Forever Marilyn, from MAC’s Marilyn Monroe collection 😦 On the plus side, I bet you’ll be able to find Natural pretty easily! I know for a fact that it’s still available online, as of today, June 18th!

Overall Rating:   5 / 5

Application:   5

Coverage:  5

Color Payoff:   5

Texture:   5

Wear Time:   5

Packaging:   5

 

As you may have noticed, a few of the products with this collection are permanent, including the Sculpting Powder. The reason for this is because this is one of the products that was actually used on Angelina Jolie in the Maleficent movie! Even though this was released about a month ago, you may still find it at some locations… If not I’ve included details about how you can get this product anytime, so keep reading!

Sorry for the bad quality photo, I had no electricity when I took this so I had no studio lighting like usual!

Sorry for the bad quality photo, I had no electricity when I took this so I had no studio lighting like usual!

Sculpt

Sculpt

MAC Sculpting Powders are matte powders that are made in shades that are perfect for a natural, yet defined contour. They’re well pigmented, but not completely intense and opaque, so they’re easy to apply and blend. While there are a total of five shades available for MAC’s Sculpting Powders, This one, Sculpt, is perfect for skin tones ranging from fair to medium or maybe even medium-dark if you apply it heavily enough. It really is my favorite contouring product of all time and is something I’ve been using for years prior to this repromote with the Maleficent collection.

When contouring, most people tend to use this type of product right below the cheekbone, around the hairline and temples, along the jawline, and sometimes on the nose (I will try to do a contouring tutorial video one day soon). The best way to apply these is with a somewhat dense, but fluffy brush. My favorites are MAC’s 109 Small Contour Brush, or the 168 Large Angled Brush… I feel like for most people, the 109 will give you more control and be pretty much foolproof, even for beginners. The 168 will apply this product more lightly, but it is harder to control and create shape with since it’s larger and less dense. This is best applied over whatever powder you set your foundation with… So you want to use this after your powder, but before your blush.

While this particular packaging for this product is limited edition, Sculpt Sculpting Powder is a permanent product. Like the rest of the makeup in this collection, the Sculpting Powder has a shiny black plastic container with the wings and title logo on the lid. The box is also a shiny black, rather than the usual matte texture. The limited packaging increases the price a tiny bit, but if you’re into the cute packaging, it’s totally worth it!

The Maleficent collection was released on Thursday, May 15th, so this is available now at counters, stores, and online at www.maccosmetics.com, if it’s still in stock, anyway. Last time I checked online, this was sold out but restocks are occasionally possible, and some stores and counters may still have it in stock. You can also always purchase this in refill form online and at PRO locations. This Sculpting Powder contains 6 g / 0.21 US oz of product and sells for $23… If you purchase this in refill form, it costs $16.50, but you must have a palette to put it in since it’s only the metal pan.

 

Maleficent Sculpting Powder Box

Maleficent Sculpting Powder Label

Sculpt

Sculpt

Photo taken outdoors in natural sunlight. Sculpt powder swatched on NC20 skin.

Photo taken outdoors in natural sunlight.
Sculpt powder swatched on NC20 skin.

Sculpt:   This Sculpting Powder is described as a “soft taupe matte”… It’s a medium to medium-dark, slightly cool toned but mostly neutral, brownish taupe with a natural matte finish. The texture is smooth for a matte, making it easy to blend out so there are no harsh lines. Color payoff is true to pan, while coverage varies, depending on what you apply this with… It can be anything from light and sheer to bold and opaque. Wear time is fantastic and I never notice it fading until 10-12 hours have gone by, sometimes even longer!

Dupes:   Since this is permanent, I don’t feel like it’s completely necessary to list a ton of dupes, but I’ll give you a few! Harmony Blush from MAC is close, but is warmer/more pink. Hoola from benefit is also close, but is darker and warmer, more like a bronzer (which it is).

Overall Rating:   5 / 5

Application:   5

Coverage:  5

Color Payoff:   5

Texture:   5

Wear Time:   5

Packaging:   5

 

As we all know, Rihanna always has flawless, bronzed skin, so of course MAC released a brand new Bronzing Powder with the RiRi Hearts MAC Holiday collection! I’m pretty impressed with the “Love, Rihanna” bronzer because it’s versatile… It’s buildable and not so warm that fair skinned people can’t pull it off, yet it’s pigmented and just warm enough that it also works on dark skin tones.

Love, Rihanna

Love, Rihanna

Love, Rihanna

Love, Rihanna

This Bronzing Powder comes in the beautiful special white pearl packaging with rose gold accents, like the rest of this collection. It also features the signature “RiRi” and “R” on both the packaging and product itself. MAC Bronzing Powders are silky smooth and buildable, so they work well on nearly all skin tones (this one is particularly nice)! While I don’t love contouring with these, as it’s just TOO bronze for a contour shade, they make perfect bronzers to brush on the cheeks for some sun-kissed color.

You can use these alone or with a blush… If using with a blush as well, I like to apply this bronzing powder more towards the back of the cheek and blend the blush from the apples of the cheeks back into the bronzer. For a heavier application of Love, Rihanna, I suggest a more dense brush such as a MAC 129, 116, or 168 angled brush. If you’d like a softer wash of bronzer or are fair-skinned, try a MAC Duo-Fibre brush like a 188, 187, or 159.

This Bronzing Powder is limited edition and was released at MAC stores and counters on Thursday, December 12th and online at www.maccosmetics.com a few days before. It sells for $30 and contains 9.5g / 0.335 US oz of product, so it’s a bit more than other MAC Bronzing Powders that contain 10 g / 0.35 US oz of product and sell for $25… Still, I think that Love, Rihanna is worth it because it’s just so pretty!

Love, Rihanna

Love, Rihanna

Left:   Applied Heavily      Right: Blended Out

Left: Applied Heavily                                     Right: Blended Out
This swatch is WITH the rose gold overspray.
Photo taken outdoors in natural sunlight. Bronzing Powder swatched on NC15 skin.

I will update this post with an additional swatch photo without the shimmery overspray tomorrow… It’s just too cloudy today to get a good one!

Love, Rihanna is described as a “soft, golden brown powder with overspray of gold pearl”… It’s a medium, soft, slightly warm toned tan-brown with subtle warm, golden-bronze undertones. With the overspray, this is much more shimmery and has a lot more of a warm, copper color to it. Without the overspray, it’s a much more subdued bronzer, which I like. Even with no overspray there is a soft, satiny sheen that contains no shimmer particles.  As I mentioned, this is buildable so the color payoff and opacity really depend on how much product you want to apply. It’s definitely pretty true to the color it is in the pan and gives great, even coverage.

I typically get around 8 hours of wear with MAC’s Bronzing Powders, with Love, Rihanna being no different. Sometimes if you have larger pores or oily skin, shimmery bronzers (or shimmery anything, for that matter) can emphasize shiny areas and pores… However, the shimmery, rose gold “R” on this bronzer is only an overspray and does not go all the way through the product, so it will only show up during the first few applications. Though some of you may be bummed about that, I’m glad! I feel like the “R” contains so much shimmer that it nearly overpowers the gorgeous color of the bronzer itself. If you’re really into the shimmery area and miss that glow once the overspray wears off, try layering Gold Deposit Mineralize Skinfinish over Love, Rihanna!

Dupes:   Soft Sand Bronzing Powder, which was limited edition and released last summer with the Temperature Rising collection, is VERY similar. Hibiscus Kiss Bronzer/Blush duo, which was released with the RiRi Hearts MAC Summer 2013 collection is also similar, but contained a pinkish color as well.

Overall Rating:   4.7 / 5

Application:   5

Coverage:  4

Color Payoff:   5

Texture:   5

Wear Time:  4

Packaging:   5

 

 

Rather than release several blushes, MAC included Pearlmatte Face Powders in the Archie’s Girls collection, which can be used for several different things… A highlighter, a blush, or an eye shadow. This review is for Betty’s, which is the warmer of the two and is called Flatter Me.

Pearlmatte Face Powders combine a lighter, more pearly base color with darker colored hearts that have a satin finish. The color of the hearts is not just stamped on top either, it goes all the way through to the bottom of the product.

This is MAC’s description of Pearlmatte Face Powders… Hopefully it gives you a clue of what this product is: “Love is in the details with all-new Pearlmatte Face Powder combining pearlized and satin shades to achieve an array of looks. Hearts are adorably stamped onto the base. Effortlessly blends with a rich and creamy texture. Use for highlighting and blush effects or as an Eye Shadow with a velvet-smooth finish.”

Flatter Me Pearlmatte Face Powder

 

Pearlmattes are super finely milled so they feel like silk on the skin. They’re easy to apply and layer or blend out. They remind me of MAC’s Beauty Powders but feel even more luxurious than those, if that’s even possible! One really nice surprise about these Pearlmattes is that they don’t break easily when dropped, despite the extremely fine milled texture. Trust me, the testers at the store where I work at have been dropped several times and they’re still in one piece!

As with the rest of the products in the Archie’s Girls collection, Pearlmatte Face Powders come with special white packaging… A white box with the Archie’s Girls logo as well as a glossy white compact with the same logo on the lid. The inside of the compact has a mirror, which, like the eye shadow compacts, is a legit mirror that is not the cheap, easily scratched up plastic type. This sturdy type of mirror also hasn’t broken when the testers have been dropped, so I think it’s safe to say that this special edition packaging holds up well in addition to being super cute 😉

Pearlmatte Box

 

Pearlmatte Packaging

 

Pearlmatte Face Powders are limited edition with the Archie’s Girls collection and are available now. Although Flatter Me is sold out online, you may want to check back atwww.maccosmetics.com later on to see if they’ve restocked it as they sometimes do. Otherwise, check your local MAC counter or store to see if they have some left! Pearlmatte Face Powders contain 10 g / 0.35 US oz of product and sell for $30.

Although MAC says that you can use these as either a blush, highlight, or eye shadow, I find that they work best on the cheeks as a blush or highlighter… You can also apply these as a soft wash of color and sheen layered over a blush (they work well like this with the blushes in this collection). If you want softer color or more highlight, swirl your brush mainly on the base color. If you want more color or want to use this more like a blush, swirl your brush more over the darker hearts.

As a blush or highlighter, Pearlmatte Face Powder wore well for 8+ hours before showing any signs of fading. They don’t emphasize pores or texture, despite the high amount of sheen they have, so these may be a good option for people with larger pores who have a hard time using something like Mineralize Skinfinishes for a highlight. For a more intense, heavy application, use a MAC 116 or 129 brushIf you want a softer color payoff, like to use as a highlighter, try a MAC 188 brush.

As an eye shadow, the lighter base color works best all over the lid or as a highlight for the inner corner of the eye or below the brow. Alone, the hearts yielded very little color and had a dry texture that didn’t want to show up or blend out very well. Sadface!

It’s strange to me how alone, the heart color doesn’t have good color payoff, but you can see a huge difference when you swirl it in with the base color… I’m not one to use the individual colors in a product like this anyway, so it’s really not a problem or fault in the product. Overall I really like the Pearlmatte Face Powders… They seem to be a big hit with this collection, so props to MAC for releasing a potentially confusing product (think Beth Ditto collection Powder to the People) and having it end up as something that’s so versatile, luxurious and fantastic!

Flatter Me Pearlmatte Face Powder Label

 

Flatter Me

 

Flatter Me Close Up

 

Photo taken outdoors in natural sunlight. Pearlmatte Face Powder swatched on NC15 skin.

Photo taken outdoors in natural sunlight. Pearlmatte Face Powder swatched on NC15 skin.

Flatter Me:   Flatter Me is described as a “golden peach with coral hearts”… The base color is a warm, light peachy color with a golden sheen, while the hearts are a dark, bold coral with a more satin-like finish. When you combine those two, this Pearlmatte Face Powder transforms into a really lovely warm, soft, light-medium coral with a pearly golden sheen. Since it has better color payoff and coverage than Veronica’s Blush, and also has a warmer tone to it, it works for anyone with fair to medium-dark skintones. Even on darker skin, it would still probably be suitable as a highlighter without appearing too light or ashy.

Overall Rating:   5 / 5

Application:   5

Coverage:   5

Color Payoff:   5

Texture:   5

Wear Time:   5

Packaging:   5

Rather than release several blushes, MAC included Pearlmatte Face Powders in the Archie’s Girls collection, which can be used for several different things… A highlighter, a blush, or an eye shadow. This review is for Veronica’s, which is the cooler toned of the two and is called Veronica’s Blush.

Pearlmatte Face Powders combine a lighter, more pearly base color with darker colored hearts that have a satin finish. The color of the hearts is not just stamped on top either, it goes all the way through to the bottom of the product.

This is MAC’s description of Pearlmatte Face Powders… Hopefully it gives you a clue of what this product is: “Love is in the details with all-new Pearlmatte Face Powder combining pearlized and satin shades to achieve an array of looks. Hearts are adorably stamped onto the base. Effortlessly blends with a rich and creamy texture. Use for highlighting and blush effects or as an Eye Shadow with a velvet-smooth finish.”

Veronica's Blush Compact/Product

Pearlmattes are super finely milled so they feel like silk on the skin. They’re easy to apply and layer or blend out. They remind me of MAC’s Beauty Powders but feel even more luxurious than those, if that’s even possible! One really nice surprise about these Pearlmattes is that they don’t break easily when dropped, despite the extremely fine milled texture. Trust me, the testers at the store where I work at have been dropped several times and they’re still in one piece!

As with the rest of the products in the Archie’s Girls collection, Pearlmatte Face Powders come with special white packaging… A white box with the Archie’s Girls logo as well as a glossy white compact with the same logo on the lid. The inside of the compact has a mirror, which, like the eye shadow compacts, is a legit mirror that is not the cheap, easily scratched up plastic type. This sturdy type of mirror also hasn’t broken when the testers have been dropped, so I think it’s safe to say that this special edition packaging holds up well in addition to being super cute 😉

Pearlmatte Box

Pearlmatte Packaging

Pearlmatte Face Powders are limited edition with the Archie’s Girls collection and are available now. Although Veronica’s Blush is sold out online, you may want to check back at www.maccosmetics.com later on to see if they’ve restocked it as they sometimes do. Otherwise, check your local MAC counter or store to see if they have some left! Pearlmatte Face Powders contain 10 g / 0.35 US oz of product and sell for $30.

Although MAC says that you can use these as either a blush, highlight, or eye shadow, I find that they work best on the cheeks as a blush or highlighter… You can also apply these as a soft wash of color and sheen layered over a blush (they work well like this with the blushes in this collection). If you want softer color or more highlight, swirl your brush mainly on the base color. If you want more color or want to use this more like a blush, swirl your brush more over the darker hearts.

As a blush or highlighter, Pearlmatte Face Powder wore well for 8+ hours before showing any signs of fading. They don’t emphasize pores or texture, despite the high amount of sheen they have, so these may be a good option for people with larger pores who have a hard time using something like Mineralize Skinfinishes for a highlight. For a more intense, heavy application, use a MAC 116 or 129 brushIf you want a softer color payoff, like to use as a highlighter, try a MAC 188 brush.

As an eye shadow, the lighter base color works best all over the lid or as a highlight for the inner corner of the eye or below the brow. Alone, the hearts yielded very little color and had a dry texture that didn’t want to show up or blend out very well. Sadface!

It’s strange to me how alone, the heart color doesn’t have good color payoff, but you can see a huge difference when you swirl it in with the base color… I’m not one to use the individual colors in a product like this anyway, so it’s really not a problem or fault in the product. Overall I really like the Pearlmatte Face Powders… They seem to be a big hit with this collection, so props to MAC for releasing a potentially confusing product (think Beth Ditto collection Powder to the People) and having it end up as something that’s so versatile, luxurious and fantastic!

Veronica's Blush Pearlmatte Label

Veronica's Blush

Veronica's Blush Close Up

Photo taken outdoors in natural sunlight. Pearlmatte Face Powder swatched on NC15 skin.

Photo taken outdoors in natural sunlight. Pearlmatte Face Powder swatched on NC15 skin.

Veronica’s Blush:   This Pearlmatte Face Powder is described as having a “silvery pink base with deep pink hearts”… The base color is a slightly cool toned, pale silvery pink a fair amount of sheen… And when I say sheen, I mean a glowing, soft kind of sheen. The swatch photo doesn’t really do it justice… It’s much prettier in person! The hearts are a dark, warm pink and have more of a satin to matte finish (if you can even get them to apply well on their own). Mixed together, it shows up as a slightly cool toned, light to medium pink with a gorgeous, pearly sheen. I suggest this for fair to medium-dark skin, as I fear that the silvery tones may make darker skin appear ashy. If you have dark to deep dark skin and want to try this product, layer it over a blush and it should work just fine!

Overall Rating:   4.8 / 5

Application:   5

Coverage:   5

Color Payoff:   4

Texture:   5

Wear Time:   5

Packaging:   5

These two bronzers are a totally new product from MAC. MAC has a few bronzing powders, which I adore, but most contain shimmer or look a little red on fair skin, which aren’t always things that I like. These Pro Longwear Bronzing Powders are actually very flattering on fair skin and still work on medium skin tones. They have a hint of a satin finish or glow but are not what I would consider to be shimmery… Best of all, they last all day! I use these for both bronzing and as a contour (since they aren’t too red they can be used for contour too). They truly last all day with no fading or smudging, so get these while you can!

Pro Longwear Bronzing Powders have only just come out with Hey, Sailor so they have the special nautical, striped packaging. They are in a mirrored compact so it’s convenient to keep in your bag, even though they wear well enough that you won’t need to touch up. This bronzer applies well with the short-handled 167 brush that also came out with Hey, Sailor.

Pro Longwear Bronzers are limited edition but are available online or at any MAC store or counter if they’re still in stock. These sell for $28.

Nude on Board

Photo taken outdoors in natural sunlight on NC15 skin.
Left: Applied heavily              Right: Blended out
Nude on Board

Nude on Board:   Nude on Board is a “bronzy, yellow-toned” bronzing powder. It has golden undertones and adds a natural warmth to the face. This bronzer looks best on light to medium skin tones.

Sun Dipped

Photo Taken outdoors in natural sunlight on NC15 skin.
Left: Applied heavily                    Right: Blended out
Sun Dipped

Sun Dipped:   Sun Dipped is a “dirty red tone” bronzing powder. It is slightly deeper than Nude on Board so it’s better suited for light to medium-dark skin. I still don’t think this would look right on dark to deep skin. Sun Dipped can be applied very lightly or you can build on it. It looks fantastic either way.  I would say that Sun Dipped also contains a little more golden micro-shimmer particles than Nude on Board but it’s still not as shimmery as other MAC bronzers are.