|Picture via Temptalia|
I'd been dying to get my hands on this foundation all summer, so when I finally had a moment to spare I hotfooted it to the MAC counter in Plymouth. I've been a lover of MAC foundations for years now, and although I have found others that I like a lot, I always find myself coming back to MAC for my base. I know that they often get mixed reviews but for me, MAC is what works for my skin.
So how did this foundation shape up? There was a lot of hype around it, particularly as it is a new avenue in colours for MAC. I know I said I loved Illamasqua's Skinbase (and I still do), I love this even more. It is oil free and has an ingredient that helps reduce oil production and just works amazingly. The new colour scheme uses a simple 1-10 numbering system, with no NC or NW base like other MAC foundations. 1 is the lightest, 10 the darkest, with quite a few x.5 shades in between. I was matched to 1, prior to going to the counter I was unsure whether I would be a 1 or a 1.5.
The Blurb: "New Foundation technology using translucent pigments to enable a fully personalized finish influenced by the subtleties of your own skin's undertone. Moisturizing demi-matte finish. Medium buildable coverage. Line-reducing soft-focus powders."
Application: When I went to MAC in Plymouth to buy this, the MUA applied this with a regular type foundation brush - flat and rounded top. I experimented a bit at home but eventually came back to my trusty Real Techniques brush which applied pretty much every foundation amazingly! You do have to work quite quickly as it is quick drying, but it dries down to a lovely soft focus finish. It is best to apply in thin layers to avoid pooling and uneven patches, but the only time I have had any problem with that was when I was having a bad skin day - by and large I find this quick and easy to apply well.
Coverage: This foundation is billed as medium buildable coverage and I think I would agree with that statement. It is one of those weird ones that feels really light on your skin but actually covers really well. I use about 3-4 pumps to cover my face, and I find that that covers my acne scars, and any 'live' spots really well. I do still need to use concealer on the worst bits, but if I was having a really good skin day (they do happen sometimes!) I could ditch the concealer and just wear this. Like the Illamasqua Skin Base, this can be built in specific areas, and I tend to do that before I reach for the concealer, so that I'm creating the best base possible.
Colour: This is by far and away the best colour match I have ever had in a foundation, and it definitely lives up to the claims of personalisation. I bought this 3 weeks ago at the end of the summer, when I still had a hint of colour in my face. Now the winter is rapidly setting in my face has lost all trace of tan, but the foundation is still working with my skin tone. I have often avoided the sun like the plague in the summer to ensure that I don't have to buy an additional bottle of foundation, but with Matchmaster, I think I will be able to venture out into the sun a bit more (obv. still with high factor SPF to protect my skin).
|L-R: MAC Studio Sculpt NC15, MAC Studio Sculpt NW15, MAC Matchmaster Shade 1, Illamasqua Skin Base 3, Illamasqua Skin Base 4, Estee Lauder Double Wear Shell, Estee Lauder Double Wear Ecru|
I'm not sure how useful the above picture is - even though it looks as though Studio Sculpt in NC15 would be my perfect foundation, I can assure you that on its own it is way too light for me, even in the depths of winter. I tend to mix it with NW15 (which as you can see is a widely darker colour!) to achieve the right colour. Also good to remember that the Matchmaster will adapt as you blend it out.
Longevity: For me, using it as I do set with MSF Natural, Finishing Powder and a spritz of Fix+, I find that Matchmaster lasts an entire day without bother. My chin has a tendency to get a little shine but that is my chin and not the product. It doesn't slide, or fade at all. The first major road test it had was a wedding that saw me apply by 2pm, and remove at 1am the following morning, including dancing and a fair amount of wine, and still I had a good looking face. It did wear off a little over my spots, which were quite raised, but I hadn't used concealer so I thought that was pretty good going.
Some full face shots with and without flash:
Additional products used (MAC unless otherwise stated):
Select Cover Concealer NW15
Mineralise Skin Finish Natural in Light
Paint in Bare Canvas
Dark Soul pigment
Illamasqua Medium Pencil in Sophie
No. 7 Lash Adapt Mascara in 01 Black
Eyebrows in Stud
Browset in Clear
Prep and Prime Finishing Powder
Nivea Pure and Natural Milk and Honey Lipbalm
Prep and Prime Lip
Where to buy: Available in 14 shades from MAC or Debenhams