Saturday, March 29, 2014

MAC Pro Longwear Concealer

This winter in Toronto is definitely one to remember. I experienced my first ice storm that left my neighbourhood without power for a few days. It is now the end of March and we are all still waiting for warm Spring weather to take over! 

The cold, dry weather has taken a toll on my skin. In my previous post I mentioned that I started using the MAC Studio Finish concealer. Although I still like it, my skin was getting way too dry to use the concealer. 

I heard a lot of hype over the MAC Pro Longwear concealer so I decided to opt for this concealer to help me out. 

Product: Compared to the Studio Finish concealer, this concealer has a liquid foundation consistency. I find the concealer to be very pigmented, so you literally do not need to use a lot. (Too bad the pump gives you more than you need...more on that later). I find it very hydrating, which is perfect for my dry skin during the duration of the winter. Personally, I do not use it under my eyes. However, I have read a lot of people talking about how it works well for that purpose. Probably because it is hydrating. My skin is sensitive to a lot of products I use on my face. Thankfully, this concealer has not broken me out whatsoever. It serves its purpose to conceal what it needs to.

Packaging: The downfall of this product is hands down the pump. Even if you carefully try to squeeze the pump to dispense a tiny amount of concealer, a whole blob will come out. I think squeezing the concealer onto the back of my hand is wasteful because I won't use the whole amount. Therefore, I have found a solution that has made the process a lot easier.I have quite a few little Clinique sampling jars so I decided to sanitize them and use them to store the excess amount of concealer that pumps out of the packaging. With one pump I can usually get two applications now.

Application: I like to use the Sigma P80 brush (flat precision brush) to apply the concealer on spots on my face. I find using this brush gives me enough precision and it also blends the concealer enough so that there are no harsh edges. To give my skin that extra moisture and a more dewy finish, I have also been enjoying using a spritz of Fix + to set the concealer. Doing this extra step helps my concealer last all day. I like the small travel size Fix + bottles ($12 CAD) because they are so convenient to throw in your makeup bag. The smell of the Fix + is also really nice and refreshing!

Final Thoughts: The MAC Pro Longwear concealer is definitely more on the pricey side retailing for $23 CAD. However, because you only need the tiniest amount to cover what you want, it will last a long time. That is, of course, if you do not waste the excess product that comes out of the pump. If you do not have any sampling jars lying around your house, you should invest in some because they will come in very handy. Overall, for this dry Canadian weather I have really enjoyed using this concealer. I will have to see how it holds up in the spring and summer...whenever the winter decides to leave. 


Friday, January 31, 2014

MAC Studio Finish Concealer

In the spotlight today we have the MAC Studio Finish Concealer.

I was in the market for a new concealer so I decided to go to MAC to try out the MAC Studio Finish Concealer.I typically use drugstore concealers, (e.g. Maybelline Instant Age Rewind line and Maybelline Dream Lumi Highlighting Concealer), but I wanted to try something that was a little more higher end and closer to my skin tone.

You may have a hard time trying to pick a shade when it comes to buying drugstore concealers and foundations. You usually have to do a trial and error test and just buy the makeup hoping that it will be your perfect shade. The shade ranges at the drugstore are also usually limited, so you may not be able to get an exact match for your skin tone. On the other hand, with higher end makeup, it is nice to have professionals help you find your match. 

For reference I am an NW20.

Product: This concealer is quite thick and creamy. If you have dry skin I would recommend that you make sure that you really moisturize your skin before using it. Otherwise, the concealer will accentuate your dry patches and make them more noticeable. 

Purpose: This concealer is versatile when it comes to what it can be used for. 
1. The obvious purpose is to conceal any blemishes, redness, or any other imperfections you want to cover.
2. You can also use this concealer to cover any dark circles you may have as it counteracts any purple or blue undertones. 
3. At the same time, this concealer can also serve the purpose as a highligher. So, whether you put it under your eyes or on the bridge of your nose you can brighten up those areas.
4. One of my favourite uses for this concealer is to clean up the edges of my eye shadow. For example, when I am doing smokey eyes I tend to blend the outer corner too far down, so I like to sweep the concealer to create the angle that I want with my shadow.

Packaging: The main difference between this concealer and my routinely used concealers is the packaging. The concealers I use are typically in a tube form that includes some type of applicator attached. The concealer itself is not exposed. However, with the MAC Studio Finish Concealer the product comes in a little compact (similar to the MAC eyeshadow containers). Opening the lid of the container exposes the concealer. You can either use your finger or a brush to apply the concealer to the areas you want to cover. Personally, I prefer using a brush just because I feel it is more sanitary.

Application: My favourite brush to use for applying this concealer is the MAC 217.

I find using the MAC 217 gives me the most flawless, airbrushed application. I just dip the tip of the brush into the concealer and then softly blend it onto the areas I want to conceal. To make sure that I have the concealer completely blended into my skin I like to pat my finger on the areas I covered, in order to warm up the product so it melts into my skin. This gives the most natural application while still giving me the coverage I desire.

Final Thoughts: This concealer has very good coverage. The packaging is really practical and you can easily throw it in your bag to touch up if necessary. If you cannot get over the fact that you may have to dip your finger in the product, just remember that you can use a brush as well. Not that I will have to any time soon, but when it comes to finishing this shade of concealer, I will definitely repurchase. Other than that, I will probably buy another shade in the summer when I am more tan.

You can buy the concealer at MAC counters or online for $22 CAD.