Pro Longwear Nourishing Waterproof Foundation is a standout formula, and certainly one of the better options available in M.A.C.'s Pro Longwear collection. Although this light cream formula is workable for any skin type, its matte finish is best for oily to combination skin (including those prone to breakouts). It's fragrance free, which is an added bonus to an already excellent foundation.
M.A.C. Cosmetics attaches lofty claims to this formula—promising a tenacious, waterproof, medium to full coverage foundation with a natural satin finish. The good news? We found much of these qualities hold true—though it isn't "waterproof," it certainly holds up through rain, humidity and sweat—more on that in a moment.
The long-wearing claim is accurate, as this made its way through a workday without fading, maintaining its coverage on staffers with oily to combination skin. A lunchtime shine check will still be necessary for those with oily or very oily skin, but those with combination skin will likely find Pro Longwear Nourishing Waterproof Foundation does an excellent job maintaining its matte finish for most of the day.
Where this formula also excels, especially for a long-wearing formula, is that it blends easily. You'll get medium coverage right away, and you can easily build up to full coverage over select areas that need a little more help. Though you'll find it conceals redness and an uneven skin tone well, you'll still need a concealer if you have any strongly pigmented post-blemish marks or brown spots.
We were surprised that this allows a little time to work before it sets, which is helpful to blend out the spots where you may find you've applied more product than you had intended. Once it sets, however, this foundation resists blending or transfer—if you blot, you'll likely find that your blush or bronzer may come off, but this foundation stays in place.
Of the 16 shades, there are options for those who fall in the fair/light to deep skin tone range—NC/NW 15 to NC/NW 50, for those of you who are familiar with the M.A.C. color palette—but those with super-fair skin will find there isn't an option for you. (That's actually true of M.A.C. foundations in general, so that fact may not surprise you!) We did not find any shades that were overly pink, peach or orange, but we would strongly recommend trying this in store and checking the results in natural light as a good shade match is critical with the coverage and long-wearing nature of this formula.
The waterproof claim, as we mentioned above, is a bit overstated. This may not hold up through an extended swimming session, for example, but it's quite water-resistant—we tested this in full submersion and it held up beautifully. We tested this through rain, hot and humid temperatures and even profuse sweating—while most foundations will disintegrate or streak under such conditions, this held its natural finish and, perhaps more impressively, its coverage. Fortunately, it washes off easily with a water-soluble cleanser.
As a bonus, M.A.C. added a few antioxidant and skin-reparative ingredients. Lecithin, caffeine and sodium hyaluronate (the optimal form of hyaluronic acid in cosmetics) are included, which adds a dose of free radical and hydrating benefit for skin.
The only downside that we can point to is that this is a smaller-sized product than most of the M.A.C. foundation options. At less than one ounce for $30+, it's on the pricey side. However, if you're in the market for a foundation that holds up through the brutal humid summer months, or just one that makes it through the workday like a champ, then Pro Longwear Nourishing Waterproof Foundation is a solid formula to try for its coverage and long-wearing matte (yet natural-looking) finish.
M.A.C. Cosmetics At-A-Glance
What more can one say for this long-standing makeup line whose products have spoken eloquently for themselves for years? In many ways, M.A.C. Cosmetics is a pivotal line not only for makeup artists but also for any in-the-know cosmetics consumer. Although M.A.C. has several singularly outstanding products, they generally excel by virtue of the range of choices offered. The color selection for everything from lipsticks to foundations is exceptional. Most of the makeup brushes are beautiful, full, and soft, as well as properly sized to fit the contours of the face and eyes.
When it comes to skincare you may be tempted to dismiss the small assortment M.A.C. offers and skip right to their makeup with its well-earned positive reputation. But doing so would mean missing a handful of beautifully formulated products that are worth trying. By no means is M.A.C.'s skin-care line one-stop shopping (at least not if you have blemishes, skin discolorations, or require more than a couple options per category), but you'll find more than just the color products impressive here, and the prices aren't unreasonable either!
M.A.C.'s salespeople are often trained makeup artists, too. This is especially true in the freestanding M.A.C. boutiques, where the staff tends to be true makeup artists.
Note: M.A.C. sets itself apart from other beauty brands by staying ahead of the curve by launching a seemingly-constant rotation of impressive limited edition products, usually with fashion-forward themes. Though it's impossible to review every limited edition product, many of M.A.C.'s are as impressive as those in their permanent collection.
Strengths: Some impressive moisturizers; praiseworthy foundations in a mostly gorgeous range of shades; good concealers; several great powder-based products including blush, bronzer, and eyeshadow in various finishes; dizzying array of lipstick shades in mostly sumptuous formulas; several very good mascaras (regular and waterproof); top-notch makeup brushes; many of the Prep + Prime products work as claimed.
Weaknesses:A few products with high levels of potential skin irritants.
For more information about M.A.C. Cosmetics call (800) 588-0070 or visit www.maccosmetics.com.
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