Monday, April 25, 2011

MAC Studio Careblend Powder, Review, Swatches and Comparison

MAC Studio Careblend Pressed Powder: "Formulated to provide a smooth, virtually invisible, fresh-looking finish, this soft, cream-like powder is carefully blended to provide the skin with extra care, nourishment and comfort."

Ingredients: Talc, Boron Nitride, HDI/Trimethylol Hexyllactone Crosspolymer, Zinc Stearate, Myristyl Trisiloxane, Caprylyl Methicone, Hydrogenated Coco-Glycerides, Tocopherol, Lecithin, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil, Olea Europaea (Olive) Oil Unsaponifiables, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter) Extract

This powder is the newest powder formula for the line. It's a pressed powder that can be used alone or to set foundation with comforting ingredients like olive oil and shea butter.

I've used the powder both ways and only applying with a fluffy brush (Sigma's SS150). When I bought this I had been using my beloved and previously untouched MAC Mystery Powder as a setting powder, simply from shopping my stash when I felt I needed a new powder. I asked the MAC MUA about this powder and she said it would provide just a bit more coverage than the mystery powder. Indeed it does, just a bit more as she had stated.

As a setting powder
I loved the way I looked after testing it out in the store. I can't recall what exactly I was wearing before she tested the powder on me, but I loved it. Over a cream like my MAC Mineralize (Cream) Foundation, the Careblend Powder felt a bit heavy as a setting powder. Over my thinner, liquid foundations the Careblend powder as a setting powder isn't a problem. However, the powder amps the coverage of the foundation overall.

Using it on its own
Lately, not wanting to fuss with a foundation and always on the run, I've been using the Careblend powder alone. I might even prefer the powder alone! At work, to even out my complexion and the like for sure, but going out, flash photography and pics... the powder alone will not do it (for me). I'm still testing the waters with this powder and reg point and shoot flash photography, especially at night. The jury is out, but I still use it =p

Comfortable, not drying
While this isn't the powder that will stop all shine for long hours at a time, it will hold some oil at bay. Touch ups are required. This powder feels comfortable for wear and won't make your skin feel thirsty.

Take a looks at some pics and read on for comparisons!
I use Medium Dark. For Summer, I may switch to Medium Deep.

Look who's hitting the pan already. I got this in February.

Here's the Careblend powder to the left, MAC Mineralize Natural Powder in Medium Dark and then MAC Mineralize Foundation Powder Loose in Medium Dark as well.

MAC Sheer Mystery Powder in Lighthearted comparable to Medium Dark

So purrrrddddyyy! I never wanted to touch it, but it came with a refill so I felt I could at least use 1! Lol!

Old beat up box for the Mystery Powder from Stylistics Collection 2007

Look closely, click to enlarge! Can you see? Top right side of my hand is Lighthearted Mystery Powder, l-r: Medium Dark Careblend Powder, MSF Natural in Medium Dark and MSF Foundation Loose

Mystery Powder: Not sure if they mystery is that it's finely milled, but I really liked the powder for most reasons-- no cakiness, finely milled and a decent color match. Color is similar to that of the Careblend powder.
Careblend Powder: Seems to be a touch smoother than the mystery powder! Because of the moisturizing ingredients, I've concluded that the powder is slightly heavier than the other powders. I've hit the pan fairly quickly with about over a month's worth of daily usage.
Mineralize Skinfinish Natural: This is the darkest of all the powders. I got this when the product first debuted during the Amuse collection in 2006. This was my face product of choice when I didn't use foundation. I used this with a kabuki brush. I may have retired this a year later. Whether I used it daily or not, I expected that this would be all used up by now. This is the only powder with small light reflecting particles in it. This is the first generation MSF Natural and to be honest, I'd have to use it again with my current routine to compare qualities. I remember retiring this product because there was no oil controlling properties at all. The newer MSF Naturals may be different.
Mineralize Foundation Loose: Making this in a loose form makes the coverage more buildable. I'm sure this was created to compete with the highly popular Bare Essentials mineral powder that has a cult following. I didn't grow too fond of this powder because the color was off to me. If you look in the picture, this powder looks very neutral to cool. I always felt off and grayish.

Of this bunch, my favorite is the Mystery Powder, followed by the Careblend Powder. I'm looking forward to trying the MSF Natural again as a person that's more knowledgeable about makeup. MSF Natural was my first love!


Nikkia (Silver Lips) said...

Yes, I finally get to read a review on this powder! I haven't been wearing it much but I totally agree about it being a bit heavy when used with a cream foundation. My favorite way to wear it is over tinted moisturizer, the skin feels light but covered if that makes sense . Great review

jessica said...

i agree Nikkia. I would rather wear this with my liquids and lighter fdtns. so would you purchase this again or stick with your msf natural? (or were you having probs with your skin tone/color changing?)

yummy411 said...

that was my comment, not by jessica. i was incidentally under her account.