Friday, April 21, 2006

Product Review: MAC Select Cover-up

Holy macaroni am I feeling overwhelmed right now. There's so much to do, and so much other crap going on that I think I'm having a mini meltdown!* But lest my mental state be reflected in my appearance, I figure this is the perfect time to talk about a new concealer I purchased. Because, as I always say, if you must feel like crap, you should at least look good while you're at it.

I've had dark circles under my eyes as long as I can remember. Seriously, I look at pictures of myself when I was 9, and they were there. Although they're not horrendous, I won't leave the house without at least putting concealer on them. Up until now (or "hitherto", if you're all keen on using big words), I was using a combination of Maybelline's Instant Age Rewind and True Illusion concealers. I liked the smoothness and blendability of the Age Rewind, and it seemed to add some luminosity to the area. However, the coverage was too sheer, so I had to top it off with some True Illusion for extra oomph.

Using 2 concealers actually wasn't too big of a pain: I'd just dab it on with a finger and go. The amount of coverage was acceptable, and the Maybelline stuff was certainly affordable. However, lasting power was crap! If I so much as teared up a little during a sneeze, the concealer would start to smudge. (I'm pretty sure this is the True Illusion's fault) And if I actually got something in my eye and tears started flowing for real? Forget it -- I'd have to run to the nearest mirror and basically re-conceal the whole area.

I finally got tired of this concealer-smudging paranoia and decided to go look for a better product. I knew MAC had a fairly wide selection of colours, and with their somewhat cult-status as a cosmetic line, I thought I'd check them out.

The lovely MA at the counter sat me down and demo'd the Select Coverup in NC20 on me. She applied it with a cosmetic sponge, which gave waaaaay too sheer coverage for my liking. However, the colour match was great, and I did like the natural-looking finish. Plus, she mentioned that coverage was buildable, so I plopped down the $13 for it and took my new purchase home.

For a liquid concealer, I find the Select Coverup quite thick. Also, it grabs on to the skin rather well, and you have to work quickly to blend it if you're using your fingertips (like I usually do). Frankly, it was kind of difficult to manage. However, once I switched to using a concealer brush, the Coverup became much more compliant. I could indeed build coverage to my satisfaction, and, most importantly, it stayed in place! I could sneeze without fear again! Rejoice!

This concealer can also be used on blemishes with satisfactory results. Again, using a pointy concealer brush is key here. You can tap your pinky over it to help blend, but applying it with fingers seemed to make it splotchy and cakey. On the plus side, it doesn't look all weird and glowy like some undereye concealers can. It dries to a matt (but not dry) finish on the skin, and so won't emphasise spots. You can also dab this over any red areas, and it helps even out skin tone. I would definitely suggest starting out with thin layers though, as this makes blending much easier.

All in all, I'm very happy with my purchase. The tube will last a long time, and it's a good multi-purposer. No more layering concealers! The downside is that I must use a brush if I want full coverage, and this takes much longer than what I'm used to (it probably adds about 5 minutes to my morning routine, although this might go down with greater practice). But, in return for awake-looking eyes that last through the day with no touch-ups, it's a small price to pay!

[EDIT: It's raining cats & dogs today, and I got an eyeful of water, courtesy of a drippy awning. Not fun, but the the Cover-up stayed in place! No touch-up needed! Hurrah!]

[EDIT #2: Apparently, I was just a make-up klutz. It no longer takes 5 minutes to put concealer on. I've discovered that if you use your fingers for the undereye, it's fine so long as you pick up enough product. Three cheers for MAC Select Cover Up! It's a winner!]

* So of course, blogging is the way to reduce my workload and use my time efficiently.

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At 12:33 p.m., Anonymous Chicken said...

Hallo there! It's been a while since I checked out your reviews!
Hope all is kosher in the land of T-dot.

Question... Are you still using the MAC Select Cover-up for the circles? I'm still using the Dermablend, but I'm finding I still look grey under the eyes. If I go one shade darker, then it's too dark. Hmph!

I still use the Lancome under eye stuff occassionally, but I do find it drying and then I look old. :(

So do you think the MAC Select is a keeper??

Chicken ~:>

At 10:20 a.m., Blogger The Glitterati said...

Chicken, you've come by just in time! I'm about to do a thing ("series", if you will) on concealers, I think that'll start next week. But in the meantime, may I suggest Cinema Secret's Ultimate Foundation (used as a concealer). It's ah-may-zing.

At 12:16 p.m., Anonymous Chicken said...

That sounds swell! Any ideas where I can purchase such a fabby sounding item? Is this another Sephora find?

So many questions, so little time to type before my co-workers walk by...

Yours in make-up heaven ~:>

At 6:11 p.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've been using Mac Select Cover-Up concealer for almost a year and a half now. I've got dark reddish circles under my eyes, red areas on my eyelids and to top it all of i've got double eyebags! Mac's concealer is actually a good concealer. It's thick consistency gives great coverage, spreadability and doesn't feel heavy at all. I can use it not only to cover the discoloration under my eyes but cover-up the redness on my lids and on my face. It does stay on throughout the day and doesn't really need a touch-up. But the downsides are.... The more you start to put on layers of the concealer, the lines under your eyes begin to define. This also happens whenever I put a single layer of the concealer then dab a little powder foundation on top of it (Mac's make-up artist taught me this). It smudges, disappears and/or streaks whenever I start to cry or get teary eyed. It also collects at the sides of the eyes (well, maybe it only happens to me because I've got oily skin)which really annoys me. I've started using YSL Touche Eclat. It's better than Mac's because it virtually blends to your skin as soon as you put it and is very light. I don't experience the problems i am having with Mac's concealer but the consistency of this is too thin to fix my problem areas. The colour is also too pink for my oriental skin. If only there is a product that combines the good points of these two great concealers...please let me know!

At 6:40 p.m., Blogger The Glitterati said...

Whoops, I missed your comment, Chicken! If you're still reading, I get Cinema Secrets at Industry Cosmetics in Toronto (Yonge & College area), and you can also order it from Cinema Secrets' website.

Anon: I actually don't use my MAC concealer anymore. For liquids, Maybelline's new Age Rewind is actually quite nice... I use it in the Light-Medium shade, and it's not too pink for my Asian skin (though if you are more golden than I am, it might not be warm enough). I like it because the concealer end is pretty high coverage, but still blendable, and the highlighting end mimics what Touche Eclat does (at least, I imagine it does, never having used Touche Eclat).

Another good liquid (gel/cream, actually), is Vichy's Dermablend. Pretty high coverage, and smooths on like silk. Not sure if it's easily available in the States, I reviewed it here.

Finally, I haven't gotten around to posting this yet, but Almay's new Smart Shade concealer is surprisingly decent. It's not the highest coverage, but it matches my skin so well, and looks so natural. From what I hear, Touche Eclat has really light coverage, so this medium coverage might be good enough for you. It feels very soft and silky going on. Like the Smart Shade foundation, the Light-Med shade is yellow-based (well, I guess they're supposed to match your skin no matter what, but those w/ cool-toned skin seem to think the Light-Med is too yellow for them), so it might be just perfect for you.

Hope these suggestions help, let us know how they work out for you!

At 1:50 p.m., Anonymous viagra online said...

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At 5:21 a.m., Anonymous Kentucky Cosmetology CE said...

My friend also recommended me MAC concealers because it gives you an awesome finish. I was using a different brand of concealer for my eyes. I'll definitely buy one this weekend.


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