Friday, 15 August 2014

Top 10: Permanent MAC Lipsticks.

As a follow up post to my Top 10 MAC Eyeshadows post (link here), I thought I'd talk about one of my favourite things in makeup/life; lipstick. Unlike their eyeshadows, I think MAC do some of the best lipsticks around... especially for the not crazily luxury style price. These are the traditional bullet style MAC lipsticks, which people are probably more familiar with. They also do smaller ranges (Pro Longwear, Mattene and Mineralise to name a few) but I wanted to focus on their standard lipsticks because they're my absolute favourite. They have a whole host of different finishes (glaze, frost, lustre, cremesheen, amplified, satin, matte, retro matte) and a massive range of colours - I'd find it hard to believe you couldn't find something you liked with so much choice. I wanted to include a good range of nudes, reds, pinks, purples and deeper shades in this post. These are my personal favourite lipsticks that MAC offers.. most of them are all time favourites and 1 or 2 have been current favourites for a little while now. Don't forget that MAC offer the Back 2 MAC recycling programme, whereby you can bring back any 6 glass or plastic MAC containers/products when you're finished with them and get a free lipstick... and who doesn't love free lipstick?!

1. Myth.
The nude lipstick that needs no introduction. I'm sure you all know about this lipstick, it's probably one of MAC's best selling colours. It's not for everyone, and I'm not saying it's universally flattering, but if you can make it work, it's a great nude. It's definitely my favourite nude lipstick and I've purchased about 3 tubes of this (probably my most repurchased lipstick so a definite all time favourite!) I'm incredibly fair and find that most nudes are too brown or pull orange on me. Myth is a pale nude with peach undertones, but not too peach. It's definitely a paler nude shade, and if you're any darker than an NW/NC 30 I would say that this would give you definite 'concealer lips'. However, if you're a pale girl like me then I'd definitely recommend checking this out if you encounter the same problem as me. Myth is a satin, so it's long lasting and almost matte but the pale shade can be a little unforgiving on the lips. It's super important to moisturize the lips beforehand. If you want a similar shade, a little more wearable (and slightly more flattering on darker skins) I'd recommend Creme d'Nude, which has a cremesheen finish.

 Myth (Satin)
2. Creme Cup.
Just buy it. Just.Buy.It. Have a wedding coming up? A date? A debs/prom? Have a pair of lips at all? Get it. Creme cup is the perfect milky nude pink that isn't too warm or cool. It looks like it may be pale in the tube, but it sort of transforms and suits any skintone it's put against. It doesn't look too sickly, pale or pastel and just makes your makeup look polished and super girly. It's a cremesheen formula and just ugh, just get it.. I recommend it to everyone, I love it! This is the colour I wore to my debs, I've used it on almost anyone whose makeup I've done for a wedding/debs/night out or special occasion. It's definitely in my top 3 all time favourite MAC lipsticks because it honestly goes with any look. It also looks great overtop of Myth!

Creme Cup (Cremesheen)
3. Plumful.
Plumful is a straight up berry plum shade with lustre finish. It's pretty glossy and the lustre finish means it isn't the longest lasting shade in the world, but it's absolutely stunning. This is one of my favourite "mature" lipsticks.. in the sense that it's not a crazy bright shade, it's pretty subdued but isn't a flat nude at all. It adds a colour to the lips that is really interesting, different, and looks good with dark or minimal eye makeup. It's a really nice shade for Autumn/Winter for those who really aren't comfortable rocking a dark lip. I personally love this as a day time shade in Autumn with golds and purples on the eyes.

Plumful (Lustre)
4. Girl About Town.
Girl About Town is a bright raspberry fuchsia shade with an amplified finish. It's very creamy and pigmented and looks great on absolutely everyone - it's a pretty neutral pink. I really like this shade in the summer particularly but looks good all year round. It's just one of those flattering bright pop of pink shades that I think pretty much everyone should own. When I have minimal eye makeup on and want a pick me up, I choose this!

Girl About Town (Amplified)
5. Flat Out Fabulous.
Flat Out Fabulous is a retro matte (they've made some newer(ish) additions to this previously teeny range and this happens to be one of the many newbies!). It's a bright fuchsia plum with cool undertones. It can pull more purple or pink depending on the person and lipliner used. It's very opaque but quite dry on the lips. It doesn't feel as dry as a retro matte like ruby woo but you definitely have to exfoliate the lips fully before application. I love to pair this with magenta lipliner (MAC) and it doesn't budge. I wore this 2 out of the 3 days at Longitude. Applied in the morning, ate on the bus, drank, sang, ate, and only had to touch up once during the day... it was crazy! Retro mattes are really the only formula that really and truly lasts on my lips like that. This is another fun bright colour that I also think would suit a lot of people. It's a nice way to incorporate some more purple into your look without being full on purple!

Flat Out Fabulous (Retro Matte)
6. Up The Amp.
... Speaking of straight up purple. Up The Amp is a grey toned purple with an amplified finish. It reminds me of a slightly cooler toned and more purple version of Plumful. Super creamy and pigmented like all amplified finishes. It's definitely very purple but isn't super dark and makes a really nice colour for Autumn/Winter particularly. This can also be made slightly more pink or purple depending on what you pair it with. I also like to use this shade in ombré style lip looks. It's a really unique shade and one that I think a lot of people should try!

Up The Amp (Amplified) 
7. Rebel.
Rebel is a great shade. Dupeable, but a nice colour nonetheless and one I think everyone should own. It looks great on everyone and can be worn a lot of different ways. Rebel looks pretty dark in the tube, but goes on more of a berry pink than a deep burgundy colour. Another great shade for those transitioning into darker lip colours. It can pull very pink when worn alone but can also be made more vampy with a darker lipliner (I like Vino/Currant and Nightmoth for that). It has a satin finish and is very pigmented. Satin and mattes are my favourite finished from MAC! Rebel is a super popular shade and rightly so - it's beautiful!

Rebel (Satin)

8. Ruby Woo.
Ruby Woo is another shade I've spoken about a lot on my blog, so I won't get too into it again. Basically, Ruby Woo is a beautifully bright pin up red with a retro matte finish. It's super drying, there's no way around it... it even tugs when swatching it on my arm so you definitely need to exfoliate and moisturise beforehand. However, I love the retro matte formula and if you get your lips in good condition prior then they look amazing and last forever on the lips. Ruby Woo is quite blue toned, but I find Russian Red to be even more blue toned (I'd suggest Russian Red too to be honest, especially if you want a matte that isn't quite as drying). For ages I favoured Russian Red, and it's still a great red, but I reach for Ruby Woo far more often now. I like to pair this with Brick or Cherry (mostly Cherry) lipliners by MAC and it doesn't budge. I think everyone needs a good red lipstick in their collection, it's all about finding the right shade for you. If you're into your bright blue toned reds that make your teeth look whiter, Ruby Woo is the one for you!

Ruby Woo (Retro Matte)
9. Viva Glam I.
I couldn't do this post without including a Viva Glam lipstick. If you don't know about the Viva Glam programme, in (very) short, 100% of the proceeds from this lipstick goes towards people living with and affected by HIV/AIDS. It's an incredible programme and one that I really like contributing to. I always recommend a Viva Glam lipstick to people because a) they have such universal shades (a lot of them are great for weddings and debs/prom) and b) because if you can find a lipstick you like in the Viva Glam range before you even look at the regular line, and the money goes towards a great cause, then all the better! ANYWAY. Viva Glam I is "the one". Yep, it's pretty much the perfect deep, Old Hollywood red with a matte finish. It makes your lips look super pillowy and gorgeous. It's definitely darker than Ruby Woo and I think this is one of the most flattering reds around. If you're looking for the perfect vintage red, this is honestly unbeatable. If red isn't your thing, I would still 100% recommend you look at the rest of the Viva Glam line to see if there's something you like there. MAC collaborate with a lot of celebrities (currently Rihanna) on seasonal, limited edition shades too!

Viva Glam I (Matte)
10. Diva.
We all knew this was coming. I'm a dark lips girl forever and the more burgundy and berry goodness, the better. Diva is the perfect dark lip ever... EVER! It has a matte texture that lasts for ages and leaves a nice stain behind on the lips after (eventually) fading. It's more of a dark burgundy red than a purple, which I think is a nice change and harder to come by. This can actually be made look really dark red alone or very deep burgundy with a slight purple tone if used with a liner such as currant. I had to include an honourable mention in the dark lips section. Media is a satin (slightly less drying texture if that's more your thing!) and is ever so slightly more purple (if that's more your thing, too!). The reason I'm including Media is honestly just for pure sentimental value, it was the first dark lipstick I ever bought/wore years ago after seeing it mentioned by a Youtuber (who sadly is no longer on the Youtube scene, weh!) and I fell in love with dark lips ever since. I think MAC do some really great dark shades, Diva being my favourite because I do prefer the red undertone, but Media is a great one too!

Diva (Matte)

Diva (top), Media (bottom)
11. Violetta.
You thought I could narrow this down to just ten? Ha, yeah... good one! Okay, so I thought I would add this last shade (I mean it, it's the last) in as a bonus shade. It's technically not in the regular permanent range at any MAC store, it's a PRO shade. That being said, you can walk into any PRO store (Google is your best friend... unless you live in Ireland then in which case you'll be sorely disappointed) and pick this up - simples. This was limited edition packaging but like I said it can be bought any time of the year at a PRO store. have also started selling their PRO shades to the public online so definitely get on that. In additon, they normally release this shade in collections once or twice a year... so I don't feel too bad about including it at all.
Onto the lipstick itself, Violetta is probably the most unique shade MAC does, which is probably why it's a PRO shade. Is a very vivid purple violet shade with a red undertone. It's an amplified which means it's super pigmented and creamy without being too glossy. The thing that makes Violetta so unique is the violet, blue and silver duochrome/shimmer running through it. It's such a glowy lipstick that can look a million different ways depending on how you apply it. Purple lips are one of my favourite things and something I don't wear nearly enough. Violetta can look quite pink when worn alone, very purple when used over a purple lip or eyeliner and I've also used this over a black eyeliner on the lips and it looks amazing if you're brave enough to try it! My photos will never do it justice. That being said, I wanted to include the swatch that had a shadow on half of it, purely because it (slightly) better shows how different this lipstick looks depending on the light. You can see the more blue tone on one side, and red on the other. The sparkle and duochrome will show up a lot more when it pulls blue. I'd highly suggest looking up decent swatches of it online riiiiiiight... NOW.

Violetta (Amplified)
So, if you were ever curious, those are my top 10 (11?) MAC lipsticks, there they are! Like I said, some are new loves and a lot are old. I love MAC lipsticks and really do think they have the best range on the market. I'm always on the hunt for a new MAC lipstick that I'll love. Did you see any of your favourites here? Please let me know what your favourite shades are below, or tweet me at @GraceyOConnell - it can be difficult to choose among the slightly overwhelming shelves of colours. In other news, I hope you're all doing well as Summer is slowly (actually, not that slowly) coming to a close and we enter the wonderful world of layering, cute boots and Diva lips! As always, if you have any questions about well, anything mentioned here then please get in touch. Similarly, if you have any blog post requests or suggestions then I'd love to hear em! :) x