Matte lipstick's definitely having a moment, and that means most major makeup brands are featuring existing or launching new matte lip products. Liquid matte lipsticks are the updated way to get this non-shimmer look, and M.A.C. joins in (but doesn't improve on) the trend with the "timeless glamour" of its Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolor. Unfortunately, while it lives up to some of its claims, it also has a few of the less-than-positive aspects, which is why it didn't earn a higher rating.
We'll give this to Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolor—the packaging is cute! It comes in a clear lipgloss-like tube, but instead of the standard cap, M.A.C.tops it off with the same style of bullet-shaped cap as its lipsticks, which creates a nice aesthetic tying into MAC's most famous product. But what about what's inside?
The lightly-scented formula (it has M.A.C.'s signature vanilla aroma) glides smoothly across lips, and talk about color! It's super-saturated, meaning a little goes quite a long way. Though it's initially somewhat creamy, Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolor dries very quickly to a true matte finish, so you have to work quickly to ensure an even application. Once it's dried, you can't move it around on your lips at all—it really stays put!
For the first couple of hours, this lipstick performs as advertised; it doesn't budge and looks even. Toward the end of an eight-hour workday though, it begins to migrate into lines on your lips, to the point that you'll notice lines you didn't even know you had!
We also didn't experience that it wore evenly; it faded around the center of the mouth very obviously first, leaving an almost "ring-like" appearance by the time we took it off. Speaking of removal, we recommend using a waterproof makeup remover to make sure you get all the color off your lips!
The color selection offered by M.A.C. (surprisingly) isn't extensive, but the shades that are available are attractive and feature a good variety of reds, pinks, neutrals, and even a bright purple option.
While we loved the true matte finish and bold color of M.A.C.Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolor, its tendency to emphasize lip lines and wear unevenly means it's not one we recommend with great enthusiasm. You'll find superior matte lipstick options on our list of Best Lipsticks.
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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