MAC Unsung Heroes: This Lip Pencil Is In Synch

Published in: Lips, MAC Makeup, Unsung Heroes

Can I tell you a secret? Okay, first, you have to promise not to tell. It’s not that I’m embarrassed or anything… Well, maybe a little, but here goes: sometimes, when I’m alone, I rock out to old ‘N Sync songs.


There, I said it.

Hey now, don’t judge! πŸ™‚ Their Celebrity album was actually pretty good.

Someone at MAC even named one of the company’s Lip Pencils after the band (well…), and it happens to be today’s Unsung Hero, In Synch ($13).

Fate is such a fickle mistress, isn’t she? I almost never met this yellowish pastel pink because for a long time I’d always just assumed it would be too light for my coloring (I’m usually more of a Subculture kinda gal). Then I decided to give it a try one day on a whim.

And I’m so glad I did! In Synch hasn’t left my side in almost a month, and it hasn’t been away from my lips for long during that time. As a matter of fact, I wore it practically every day when I was Vancouver last week. I just love the look — a very pretty nude lip a la Kim Kardashian.

Lately, I’ve been layering it beneath MAC Evolution Revolution Lipglass, but I can see it looking lovely with any number of pinks and peachy pink lipglosses in your collection.

You might try it with…

If you struggle with dry lips, I feel like In Synch isn’t as creamy as some of the other MAC Lip Pencils I’ve tried. Prepping your lipst first with a lip balm should help. I’ve been using Clinique Superbalm in Grapefruit, a hydrating, non-sticky balm that layers well with other products, and it gives a tad more pigment to the pink.

After applying a thin layer of Grapefruit, I’ll wait a few minutes for it to absorb, and then line and fill in my lips with In Synch. Then, I’ll blend with a finger and finish with a layer of gloss.

Here’s one way to round out the look…

Try sweeping MAC Blushbaby on your cheeks, lining your lash and water lines with MAC Eye Kohl in Feline, and patting MAC Eyeshadow in Soba on your lids.

And because it always pays to be ‘N Sync… πŸ™‚

The MAC Unsung Heroes series features some of my favorite products from MAC’s permanent collection

Mama said knock you out!

Dream Water said knock you out. I came across this stuff at an airport last month. I have to say — it initially caught my attention because I thought it was something people drank to have good dreams.

But it’s actually supposed to help you relax and fall asleep, two things I sometimes need help with. An ancient Asian saleswoman at an airport snack counter convinced me to give it a try. She was also trying to talk me into an ugly hologram unicorn bookmark and a dusty bag of salted peanuts, but I passed on those…

It was about $4 at the airport, but it’s probably less expensive at other stores.


I finally got around to trying it last night, and WOW! It knocked me out cold. It’s calorie-free and contains a bunch of sleep-friendly herbs. I was sawing logs within 20 minutes of downing the little bottle. No kidding, I could barely keep my eyes open to read my book.

It tastes pretty gross, though (like a mix of sugar-free Kool Aid and stinky feet). Still, I think it’s better than insomnia.

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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So far, 63 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Elaine says:

    I started singing N’Sync songs throughout the whole post. Then sang the whole “Girlfriend” song in time to the video. <333333 Brings back memories!!!!

  2. Jessi says:

    That’s cool that the drink works! I remember you saying you bought it but forgot to ask how it worked.

    In Synch looks really really pretty on you. Of course my skin tone would turn it into weird color, because that always happens to me. But, I’ll still be sure to try it out when I’m next at the MAC counter.

    Btw, the top you are wearing looks ridiculously cute just from the straps!
    Jessi recently posted … EOTD with Darling Girl Cosmetics

    • Karen says:

      Hi Jessi,

      Hey, you never know until you try, right? πŸ™‚ I hope the color sings on your skin.

      And thanks re: the outfit… it’s a dress! It’s hot here today.

  3. Lilly says:

    This might be the end of my search for the perfect pinky nude lip for darker skin girls! Your awesomeness never cease to amaze me!

  4. Sanya says:

    Hey Karen! The water seems pretty interesting, but it has me wary– sleep drugs are hugely addictive and are responsible for a lot of unwitting addicts– they ruin lives because of the lack of warning surrounding them… I feel like if the water is THAT effective, how can it not be kind of dangerous too?

    …Still, I do have a lot of trouble sleeping on flights…

  5. Pang says:

    Hi Karen! I’m totally digging your look. I can’t wait to pickup that gorgeous lipgloss of yours. I also need to pickup every product that you used. You’re my biggest inspiration when it comes to applying makeup.

  6. Heidi says:

    Very nice color. I’ll have to give it a try.

    Years ago, where I used to work, my whole row of cubicle mates and I would have a daily sing-along to “Bye Bye Bye” before we started our shift. It was so much silly fun!

  7. Stephanie R says:

    I want to say what put you to sleep was the melatonin in that drink more than anything else. I’ve had to take melatonin before to actually sleep since due to my lexapro, that tends to keep me awake when I should be sleeping, thus screwing up my sleep patterns. If I recall correctly, melatonin is sold over the counter in most stores in their vitamin or nutrition departments.

    And now I’m listening to ‘NSync too!

    • Karen says:

      I’ve tried melatonin by itself before and it seems to be hit or miss with me. Did it work well for you?

      And yay! I hope you have The Two of Us in your ‘N Sync rotation.

  8. Nina says:

    ohh yes … i do own in synch but often forget to use it! πŸ™‚

  9. Ariana says:

    LOL! I listen to N’ SYNC everyday I put my I-Pod on shuffle and some how one of there songs comes up.

  10. Vijaya says:

    I always need help getting to sleep. I should give that stuff a shot!
    Vijaya recently posted … The Liebster Blog Award- Thanks mNg!

  11. snoopysteph says:

    I’m definitely going to pick up a bottle or two before I head to Singapore in August! πŸ˜€ I’ll need some help falling asleep on the 15 hour flight from LA to Hong Kong.

    I have the In Sync pencil (wasn’t it recently featured in a MAC release?) but I can’t quite get the hang of it. I’m so pale that I feel like it washes out my face even more…maybe I need a more pigmented gloss over the top? I’ve never been good with lip pencils.

    • Karen says:

      Lucky! How long will you be in Singapore? Are you going for work or fun?

      And yup, In Synch’s from Quite Cute and Too Fabulous (good memory!). Have you tried blending it in with a finger? It seems to make a difference. I can’t wear it on its own, either… it seems to go better with something a little more pigmented on the top.

      • snoopysteph says:

        For fun! My brother has been working on a project over there through his work & was kind enough to spend his frequent flyer miles on his big sister. πŸ™‚ I’ll be there for 1 week and I’m SUPER excited!

        Ah ok, I think I picked it up from the Quite Cute collection. I’m going to try it with Superbalm underneath.

  12. Appu says:

    Thanks for letting us know about dream water. I’ve been having very bad insomnia since the past few weeks. I’ll probably give this a shot!
    Appu recently posted … Josie Maran Argan Daily Moisturizer SPF 40

  13. Phyrra says:

    I like this with Strange Potion lip gloss πŸ™‚

  14. yuri says:

    the color is very pretty for a nude lip

  15. Jen W says:

    Ooh baby lips! I love subculture as well, but In Synch is a world of pretty!
    Jen W recently posted … DIY Shea Butter- Honey- and vitamin B5 rich body cream

  16. Vicki says:

    Thanks for another MAC Unsung Hero, I am very much enjoying this series and have picked up a few things.

    I LOVE Nsync and I am not ashamed to admit it! Celebrity album is great, I’m fond of Just The Two Of Us as well. Plus Stevie Wonder on Something Like You. What more could you want?

  17. Denise says:

    I should try both In Synch and Subculture at the MAC counter. You rock those two, I hope it looks okay on me!
    Denise recently posted … Win One for Dad!

  18. Jobe says:

    Melatonin – It is wonderful in general. However, it can give me technicolor dreams. Works like a charm for airplane sleeping. But i have wrestled a unicorn in my dreams while taking it.
    Jobe recently posted … Drink Coffee like a boss

  19. kiwikiwidragon says:

    Would love to know where you got that gorgeous top Karen! Do tell!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Kiwikiwidragon,

      It’s a dress by a brand called Lush. I bought it a few weeks ago on sale at, and unfortch no longer online. Do you live near a Nordstrom? It still might be available in-store in the juniors section.

  20. NeenaJ says:

    Hey Karen! Glad to read that you got a good night’s sleep. Melatonin requires days to weeks to build up in your system and get you to bed at a synchronized time each night, so that propably wasn’t it.

    The GABA and the 5HTP are both “feel good” drugs that your brain makes. These likely relieved any anxiety you might have had and allowed you to drift off without urgent thoughts disrupting the process.

    A word of warning, however, a lot of drugs interact with 5HTP such as: drugs for depression, insomnia, fibromyalgia, smoking cessation, and pain. Also, Robitussin DM also interacts with it. Not enough is known about GABA yet but, since that’s a brain chemical too, there could be similar interactions. If you are taking any of these medications, this may NOT be a safe product to use!

    Just because it’s natural, doesn’t mean it’s good. But, if you’re otherwise medication-free, it’s probably fine. Just looking out for you!
    NeenaJ recently posted … Taupe-tacular Navy EOTD

  21. Gauri says:

    Yes!! Want. I Γ’β„’Β₯ In Synch
    Gauri recently posted … 7 Job Interview Beauty Dos &amp Donts

  22. Gia says:

    Spooky… but i was in a retro mood today listening to N Sync songs on Youtube…and then clicked onto u’r site and u have a vid up!! And what’s crazier – i’m wearing In Synch – its been my go to lip pencil these days – even bought a backup when it came out with the Quite Cute Collection. BTW Karen i love the dress u have on…and i just have to ask – where did u get it from?

    • Karen says:

      Spooky indeed! We must be on the same wavelength. πŸ™‚

      The dress is by a brand called Lush. I got it online on sale from a while back… I looked on the site and unfortunately it’s not there anymore. Do you live near a Nordies? You might still be able to find it in the junior’s section. It also comes in black.

  23. Tiffany Diva says:

    Hi Karen! I fell in love with this pencil the minute I laid eyes on it! For the longest time, I was using NARS’ “Jilted Love”, but they discontinued it! This is a close match, although it is a bit “paler pink”, it’s easily remedied by a corally gloss. The MAC artist suggested Costa Chic, Insync and Fashion Fanatic- gorgeous colour!

    BTW- Thanks so much for your “unsung Hero” series- you are such a great help! Going shopping tonight! Yay!


    • Karen says:

      Hi Tiffany,

      Ooh! I have Costa Chic and <3 it. Thanks for the combo recommendation — I'll have to try it.

      What is on your shopping list for tonight? Or are you gonna wing it?

      • Tiffany Diva says:

        Karen, MAC has YOU to thank- I bought stuff for myself, and a client based on your unsung hero series- she never wears makeup, and I started her off with Blushbaby, Careblend (powder in Light), Sketch, Twinks, Shroom and Carbon (eyeshadows), and Modesty lipstick. I FINALLY bought Humid for myself, lol.

        You’re right- it’s amazing!

        BTW- I am filipina too (from Toronto- Yeh!) so the colours you reccommend are perfect!

        I need to create pallettes though- too many pots!

  24. karo says:

    Synch looks so awesome on you!
    I want SYNCH !
    And now,I love it! πŸ˜‰
    karo recently posted … Tages Make Up -With Patina in love

  25. Kim says:

    I have Bye, Bye, Bye and I Want You Back on my iPod, so I’m in no way judging. I usually take a bit of a ribbing from others (right before they start bopping around to it themselves). πŸ™‚

    Your arm is looking mighty buff in that pic, btw!

    • Karen says:

      Dude… it’s leftover muscle from a long time ago. I used to lift pretty regularly. Now, not so much!

      Did I tell you I started reading Game of Thrones? I’m almost halfway through the book.

      • Kim says:

        I hear you! I keep saying that I need to hit the weights more often before I wave and knock over small children with my arm flab. πŸ™‚

        I saw that you mentioned it to someone in the comments and was totally excited for you! Do you like it so far? One of my friends is just starting book 4 and there are so many plot lines that I find her reminding me of things. I can’t imagine the poor fans who started reading the series when the first book came out. They must be re-reading like crazy before every new one! I really like it, but it’s not light or feel-good (as you know!), so I can understand how some people are not as thrilled. Let me know what you think – I’m always up for a little dishing. πŸ™‚

  26. I tried a sleep drink called reBloom that was fantastic! I was asleep in a half hour and stayed asleep all night long. I wanna know how you got your glowy skin! My unsung lip pencil is Whirl.

  27. AC says:

    Hi Karen,

    Love your blog! Just want to ask you what blush are you wearing? It’s so pretty.


  28. Georgia says:

    Karen, I must say I truly love your Unsung Heroes posts – I had never even heard of this beauty and I consider myself fairly well-acquainted with MAC… Thankyou so much for the time and effort you must put in xxx

  29. This is my favorite MAC lip liner πŸ™‚ Oh and I used to LOVE NSYNC!
    Kristine Ayala recently posted … Tom Ford Beauty – Launching Sept 2011

  30. Elle says:

    Now I have “Two of Us” stuck in my head. And honestly I like “Girlfriend” but I LOVE the Nelly remix of that song. Le sigh. πŸ™‚

  31. Elle says:

    “It tastes pretty gross, though (like a mix of sugar-free Kool Aid and stinky feet)”


  32. Gina says:

    Is that MAC blushbaby on your cheeks? It looks prettier than my blushbaby! Did you put a highlighter over it or something? I’m dying to know- it’s so gorgeous!

  33. Mollie says:

    I’m soooo glad you posted about this! I bought when it came out with one of the Cute collection, but haven’t been sure how to use it. Thanks for giving me some great ideas. I can’t wait to go play with it now. πŸ™‚

  34. elwoods17 says:

    Hot Mama! I want this pencil now!!! Will look great in the summer with a tan! Karen your skin looks luminous! What are you using? Please tell darling! πŸ™‚

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