Monday, 10 March 2014

A make-up lesson at Mac - was it worth it?

I love make-up. I admit it. I don't buy anything like as much as I used to, but I still love to look. And, let's be honest, I still do buy some. Recently, I have discovered a love of 'drug store' (awful term, but we don't really have an equivalent) brands, but you cannot beat a higher-end foundation and concealer - well, that's my opinion, anyway.

Today, I had a make-up session with Jo at the MAC Pro store in Covent Garden. She was brilliant. It was a 90 minute session where she actually taught me how to apply the make-up as well as showing me a wide variety of different options. Because I haven't won the lottery, I couldn't get it all, but I did make a few strategic purchases:

(Okay, it was more than a few.) Going from left to right: Pro Longwear Concealer, Pro Longwear SPF 10 Foundation, Prep + Prime Vibrancy Eye, Eye Shadow in Charcoal Brown and the infamous 217 Blending Brush.  

The foundation is fantastic. It stays put without rubbing off on your clothes or your phone (or other people, if you're getting close) - in fact, it's pretty damn hard to get off at the end of the day. It definitely delivers on the 15 hour promise made by MAC. You're going to need a decent cleanser to get this stuff off without scrubbing your face away. I would say it has a medium coverage, but it's buildable if you're that way inclined - I'm not, which is why it works for me. It's not the cheapest at £25, but it lasts all day, doesn't need touch ups and a little goes a long way. Plus it's got an SPF. What's not to love? Good investment. 

My undereye area is really bad for dark circles and generally needs some serious help in order to make me look awake. (Probably - and this is just a guess - the four children under 5 don't help in that department either.) The Prep + Prime Vibrancy Eye is £22 and claims to be 'a quick fix to reduce puffiness and under-eye shadows whilst simultaneously creating a bright natural radiance to the entire eye area'. What I really like is that you can mix it with your concealer to really reduce cake-ing - it works very well for me. I've been struggling for some time on this, and so far, so good. Definitely worth a try if you have a very dry undereye area. 

The Pro Longwear Concealer is lightweight and I would say is medium to full coverage. The claim, similar to the foundation, is that it lasts up to 15 hours - and it certainly does on me. You're going to need a decent eye make-up remover to get rid of this stuff. It's £15.50 - so more expensive than drug store concealers - but the pump dispenser will mean it stays good for longer - and less waste. 

Being honest, I'm not sure it's worth the extra money on high end eye shadows - I reckon you can get some pretty good dupes from the likes of Maybelline and Bourjois (to name but two). However, this is the eyeshadow that just keeps giving. Eyeshadow? Check. Eyebrow filler? Check. Contouring? Check. 3 products in 1? Even I can do the maths on that. £12.50 split three ways is definitely worth it. If you're flush, though, MAC does have some lovely colours...

Obviously, I couldn't leave without this brush - the 217 is infamous and the fame is well deserved. The quality is obvious and I can confirm that it washes and dries well. I'm a big fan of the Real Techniques brushes, but I'd suggest that no make-up brush collection is complete without this. It's £18. 

If you're near a MAC Pro store and have the time (and the cash) I'd highly recommend a session - no matter what you've seen on YouTube, sometimes you can't substitute some good, old-fashioned one-to-one tuition. 

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