I can’t be the only one out there intimidated by MAC Pigments. For years I overlooked their brightly colored, loose shadows. They look so professional and no-nonsense in their sexy little jars. I assumed there was no way a klutz like me could use them.
Seasoned MAC junkies seem to love ’em though, so in the name of Makeup and Beauty Blog science I decided to give them a chance. I figured the worst that could happen would be I’d drop a jar on the bathroom floor and end up with purple-stained towels, a purple toilet, sink and floor. But other than that, what could go wrong?
But surprise surprise! — even I couldn’t muck this up! Using the steps below, I managed to avoid both 1) a big mess in the bathroom and 2) looking like a rabid clown.
MAC Pigments the easy way
Start by grabbing a stiff eye brush, like the MAC 252 or the MAC 239. Stiff brushes are easier to use with pigments than fluffy brushes because stiff brushes provide more control over color application. Using a fluffy brush results in a lot more color going all over the place. Trust me, you don’t want this to happen.
All the pigments come with a plastic “stopper.” You’ll see this when you open the lid of the jar.
Sidenote: please excuse the broke-ass manicure. I did swatches of Essie’s new spring collection and over the Christmas break had five different colors on the nails of my left hand.
I then placed this plastic stopper onto the lid with the powdery side up.
Dipping the brush directly into the jar loaded it with too much product, so instead I grabbed just the right amount of the product from where it collected on the plastic stopper.
Tap off excess color against the rim of the jar or swipe the brush head across a Kleenex.
Voila! Now you can use the pigment as a shadow or highlighter!
Not all pigments are suitable for eye use, so if you plan to use a pigment around your eyes make sure it’s rated safe for use there. The packaging or the insert included with the pigment should let you know!
The MAC artist who taught me this application trick discouraged me from using concealer as a base and recommended I use MAC Paints and the MAC Paint Pots. I’ve tried all three as bases and prefer the Paint Pots as a base because they emphasize the richness of the pigment’s color and have excellent staying power.
MAC’s pigment jars are totally huge, and one jar will take you into your next few lifetimes. If you are on a budget then grab a friend and head to the MAC counter together to share a jar. There’s plenty enough for both of you, and you’ll save yourself a pretty penny.
Are you ready to start collecting pigments with me? Let’s do this!
Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,