MAC Fafi: The Things I Do For Love

Published in: MAC Makeup, Product Reviews

“…you see, I’m a beauty writer, and I’d like to share pictures of the MAC Fafi display and some swatches on my blog.”

“Yeah, well, I’m sorry, but you can’t take pictures in here.”


“Please, is there any possible way? These are die hard, loyal MAC fans, and I’d really like to let them see color swatches of the line. They are so excited, and most of them intend to spend a lot of money on it. I could give a special mention to your store…”

“Sorry, NO! It’s policy. I can’t let you do that.”

Note to file: ’tis usually a BAD IDEA to tell a journalist “no” because come hell or high water, she’ll find a way to get what she wants. Behold, the forbidden MAC Fafi display:


Approaching the MAC store yesterday my spider sense started tingling. I knew deep in my veins the powers-that-be would not let me get swatches and take pictures of Fafi without a fight. I had El Hub, my getaway driver and co-conspirator, circle around the block a few times, with me ducked down in the passenger seat beside him, so I could case the joint before embarking upon the mission. Peering into the store as we circled the block, I could see what I’d be up against.


Inside were four makeup artists busy with six customers. I contemplated my Fafi swatch strategy and decided I had two options:

First, there was Option 1, codenamed “Guerilla Warfare.” I would enter the store and immediately start snapping pictures and then play dumb the moment the employees shut me down (“My bad, I didn’t know I couldn’t take pictures, sorry!”).

Option 2, codenamed “Smooth Operator,” would require better timing and more finesse than Option 1. I would enter the store, introduce myself, make nice, and then charm my way into being allowed to take a few snapshots. I’ve pulled this one off many times before; it’s harder work, but when executed correctly can pay off in the end. You know the drill: you get more bees with honey.

For this mission, I chose Option 2. El Hub double parked the getaway car in front of the store, we said our goodbyes, and off I went.

Unfortunately, it didn’t quite work out the way I’d hoped it would. After being told three times that I couldn’t take any display pics, I took out my trusty camera and shot hella pictures of the display when nobody was watching, ha!

When I asked if I could swatch the products, I got shut down yet again. Undeterred, I meticulously applied color swatches to my arm. I could tell a few of the makeup artists were on to me. “I just want to see what the colors look like against my skin tone,” I replied with a smile. “Aren’t those Paint Pots to die for?”

After I finished swatching the entire Fafi line (with the exception of the nail polishes) onto my left arm, I waited until all of the makeup artists were busy with customers, and then calmly walked out the front door.

Outside, I spotted El Hub behind the wheel of the getaway car and booked it!



Without further ado (drumroll, please!), below are the forbidden Fafi swatches.

The pics are kinda ghetto, I know. The James Bond-like conditions weren’t ideal, but I did the best I could!

MAC Fafi Paint Pots from left to right ($16.50 each): Cash Flow, Perky, Layin’ Low, Girl Friendly, Nice Vice, Rollickin’

MAC Fafi Eyeshadow Quads from left to right ($36): Fafi Eyes 1, Fafi Eyes 2

MAC Fafi Lipglasses from left to right ($14): Squeeze It, Sugar Trance, Cult Fave, Totally It

MAC Fafi Powder Blush from left to right ($17.50): Fashion Frenzy, Hipness
MAC Fafi Iridescent Powders from left to right ($21): Verve-Acious, Sassed Up, Belightful

MAC Fafi Lipsticks left to right ($14): High Top, Strawbaby, Not So Innocent, Flash-n-Dash, Fun ‘N’ Sexy, Utterly Frivolous


Ahhhh, yes, MAC Fafi. The things I do for love…

The MAC Cosmetics Fafi Collection drops February 13th, so check your MAC Counter or your favorite free standing store. Just don’t tell them you’ve got a camera on you, yo!

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,


If you liked this post, check out MAC Makeup Tips: MAC Does Makeup for Music, Too and A Kryolan Makeover, aka Adventures in Theater Makeup. πŸ™‚


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So far, 137 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Anna says:

    Hi Karen,

    Lol Lol ! Loved reading about your James Bond mission to get the swatches and how your OH went along with you on lil adventure !! You know, you’d make a greet private investigator !:)

    As a avid reader of your blog, I appreciate the swatches and the trouble you went to chick !


  2. Kelly says:

    Haha, you’re too much! I think you need some co-conspirators next time to distract the MAs while you take your ‘ninja swatches’.

    I think I’m going to nab a couple paint pots (perky and nice vice) and maybe a blush. I’m much too interested in the Heatherette and Beauty Powder Blushes on the horizon to go so crazy with Fafi.

  3. Karen says:

    Hi Anna! Maybe I should add “super makeup spy” to my list of things I want to be when I grow up!

    I’m glad you dig the swatches! I’ll tell ya now – the Paint Pots and the Lipsticks were totally great. The quads were just “eh” so save your money!

  4. Karen says:

    Hi Kelly!

    Great idea on the co-conspirators! I’d probably have to find some girls though – El Hub would NOT be the best person for the job. It would be like bringing a bull in a china shop, for sure.

    The Fafi Paint Pots and the blushes are really cute…I wasn’t as wowed as I thought I’d be with the Iridescent Powders (they felt flaky and grainy) or the Lipglasses. Gotta say that the packaging was top notch though! Everything looked really cute (I am a sucker for that, though!)>

    Yeah, I’ve got my eye on the Beauty Powder Blushes, too, girl! πŸ˜‰

  5. elyse says:

    I cannot believe you did that! You are my hero.

  6. Aleks says:

    Cheerio from Finland! I came across your blog a while ago and I’ve been an avid reader ever since! I love love love your blog! It has inspired me to a) purchase a bunch of beauty products (I used to use only foundation, blush, mascara and l/g) b) try various looks. πŸ™‚ This post made me laugh my ass off! Keep up the good work!

  7. Karen says:

    Hi Elyse,

    LOL, thanks girl. πŸ˜‰ Planning on snagging any Fafi?

  8. Karen says:

    Hi Aleks,

    Hello, it’s so great to meet you! I love that you’ve been inspired to try new things, it totally makes my day to read that :). And I say this all the time, but really, I mean it – thank you for reading the blog and for saying “Hi!”. I always like to meet new people who visit…take care and I hope we get to talk again soon, woo hoo!

    PS. Are you planning on getting any Fafi?!

  9. Holly says:

    wow those paint pots all look gorgeous! The only problem is they probably wont come out over here in the UK for about another 3 years!!

  10. Mrs. Lynne says:

    That is too effin hilarious!! OMG, I was at the store the other day to get Slimshine swatches. There right when the doors opened, two kids packed in a double stroller and hogging the one and only Slimshine display. Had to make it quick because Big Boy’s dentist appointment was WITHIN the hour. Baby starts crying (I didn’t even tell them I was a beauty blogger, lol), I swatch as fast as I could marking the corresponding number on my inventory list that I made beforehand so I knew which one was which (all gosh darn 20 of them!!), chatting it up with the MA (so I don’t get kicked out) while handing me a MAC wipe. I leave the MAC wipe on the counter, couldn’t wipe the hard work for nothing!, and made out in the parking lot taking advantage of the natural light and off it was to the dentist appointment, lol! Hubbo was like, “wth is on your hand?” I said, “work”! πŸ˜‰

    I’m on to the Fafi paintpots though. What do you think of the quads? I like eyes 1 but at the same time they kind of look passable. What’s your take?

  11. May says:

    You’ve got balls, Karen! Thank you so much for going through all the trouble to get swatches for us πŸ™‚

    I don’t understand why (at the very least) they didn’t want you to swatch the products?

    I’ve got my eyes on the Hipness blush… I just hope it agrees with me! Do you recall if it had any shimmer in it? I’m hoping there isn’t!

  12. Shawnta says:

    Girl you had me dying with laughter over here!
    Now see on your arm everything looks gorgeous and I want it all. LOL!

  13. Davina says:

    hey karen! i love your blog, it always makes me laugh & i appreciate all the silly captions on the pics you post. πŸ™‚
    anyways, just wanted to say hello & commend your excellent super-spy skills to post those excellent swatches! i’ve seen a couple fafi posts, but these close-ups definitely give a better idea of texture & color pay-off and such. too bad about the iridescent powders – they do look kind of flaky, not as smooth as i’d hoped. i’m not too into the light-colored lipsticks, but a couple of the lipglasses & the paint pots are definitely on my (ever-expanding) wishlist!

  14. TUPRNUT says:

    You rock, Karen! Thanks for taking the risk for all of us. I guess I never realized that taking photos of swatches was a no-no. I see sooo many swatches online of new lines and I guess I always assumed that MAC supported it because it =’s good business for them.

    I picked up some slimshines yesterday and got to talking with one of the girls. She grabbed the whole line for me and showed me everything, one by one. Cash Flow looks awesome, but I’m with you – I think the eye quads are just so-so. I’m excited to try some of the lipsticks – Strawbaby, Flash-n-Dash & Fun ‘N’ Sexy.

    Major props to your husband. Tell him a big thanks from me!

  15. bgirldskco says:

    You’re a beast!!! You do not take NO for an answer, and you do your job. That’s awesome! I love your blog, and I want to get one of those Fafi Irredesient Powers. Thanks for the swatches!

  16. Anna says:

    Thanks for the tip off Karen….I might pick up on or two bits, seeing as you went to so much trouble to get them, be rude not to right !;)

    You dont know how much it hurts me to say it, but I might skip the Fafi and drop some serious £££/$$$’s on Heatherette instead !


  17. Miss Jeffrey says:

    You are too friggin funny Karen!!

  18. sophie says:

    Hi Karen !

    Thanks a lot for this post,it really made me laught !!!
    You are a terrible girl !!!
    I must also congrat your “El hub” to have helped you in that james bond girl trip !!!
    I’d like to plan on getting some fafi,but it’s not already available here…The new collection is the “n-collection”…
    I went to a Mac store on thursday with my make-up and beauty blog list: it was a really great moment… ah, mac mon amour…

    Your french friend beauty addict,

  19. PeeChee says:

    hey Karen!!

    I could imagine the “mission impossible” theme song playing while you did your swatches. πŸ˜› Ever since I got groundwork paint pot from the N collection…I think I’m eyein’ those from the Fafi collection. Which ones did you particularly like??

    Next time you plan another covert operation like that, give me a holla! I’ll be glad to be an alibi and help ya out!

  20. Tekoa says:

    Oh, your story made me laugh!

    Oh boy, do I have a story to share too. It started out with me not getting a Fafi event invitation. In Canada (or my part of it anyway) the event was the Fafi collection was set up in the back room so that the lucky folks who got an invite could buy it early. I should have gotten one, but alas, did not. So here I am, checking out the new slimshines when my MA Jedi Master approaches me with an interesting story. In my whole city, ONE person booked to check out the Fafi collection. ONE out of a MILLION people. Something was terribly wrong with the Force…anyway, She said she’d try to pull some strings to get me into the coveted back room to buy things early(since I was her young jedi apprentice). Alas, the red tape prevented me from buying anything. BUT my boyfriend and I were ushered into the back anyway where I gaped in awe and swatched while my little Canadian heart skipped with glee. Then I was allowed to make a list of what I wanted so that it could be set aside for me to pick up on the appointed day. Typically it is not allowed to put things on hold like that. I felt very special!
    Now what about the puzzling Fafi turnout? It was hypothesised that there was a giant mail mixup and an unknown multitude of MACaddicts didn’t get their invites like they should have.

  21. Glosslizard says:

    Hiya Karen!

    Great job! Move over Lois Lane, you are our intrepid girl reporter! I think this story will outshine the collection! They need to rename it the Stealth Blogger collection! πŸ˜€

    I like the look of the Layin’ Low paint pot (for wearing while sneaking) and I might have to score a lipstick just for the sake of scoring a lipstick, ya know?

  22. Tania says:

    Karen you just go girl! Hey!! I’m going to be so totally poor after this and Heatherette. I mean seriously a girl can’t have to many pink lippies or LE compacts. Way to get ‘er done!!!

  23. Thushaa says:

    I went to a Fafi event today. They wouldn’t allow pictures to be taken either, but I went with your option 2 and found a makeup artist that allowed me to sneak a pic or two. πŸ˜‰
    Ah the things we go through for people! Congrats on accomplishing your mission! The swatches are great! πŸ™‚

  24. oh karen, that was amazing!

  25. Karen says:

    Hi Holly,

    The Paint Pots are pretty fly. I will probably have to get the whole lot. That’s crazy that it’ll be three years before ya’ll get it across the pond!

  26. Karen says:

    Hi Mrs. Lynne,

    LOL, great story! πŸ™‚

    The quads were just eh. The outside packaging was totally cute but the colors themselves didn’t really do much for me. But the Paint Pots, yeah, faboo! Get on it, girl!

  27. Jen says:


    I’ve been reading your site for some time now, and this time I just HAD to comment. I swear I could hear the mission impossible music while reading this entry. And seriously – the number of swatches on your arm made me laugh even harder! Thank you so much for this – Due to your success in this operation, I suspect a Heatherette mission in your future…


  28. Karen says:

    Hi May,

    The blushes were matte with no sparkle, and both were *very* pretty! πŸ™‚

    I couldn’t quite figure out why they didn’t want me to swatch, either. I’m guessing it might be ’cause the release date isn’t technically until the 13th. You’d think that they’d be all for it though, since having pictures floating around and having people excited about it beforehand is great for sales.

    Anyway, the blushes are worth it! I loved ’em.

  29. Karen says:

    Hi Shawnta,

    Thanks, girl! You’ll have a great time on the 13th, then! Take a look at the bags and the cute dolls while you are there, sooo cute. πŸ™‚ Have a good week!

  30. Karen says:

    Hi Davina,

    I’m so glad you enjoy the blog and that it gets you laughing! πŸ™‚ It was fun being covert ops for one afternoon. Watch out, James Bond!

    Anyway, I was really bummed out by the iridescent powders, boo! The glitter was really chunky, and much grainer than the Barbie pressed highlighting powders from last year (which I heart deeply).

    You’ll really dig the Paint Pots, as they are much prettier in person. πŸ™‚

  31. Karen says:

    LOL, Tuprnut! I gotta say, El Hub drives a mean getaway car. πŸ™‚

    Oh yeah, the lipsticks are worth getting excited about. I liked them too – very fun and pretty. Are you thinking about any Lipglasses? They didn’t do much for me.

  32. Karen says:


    Your welcome, girl! Lemme know what loot you end up getting πŸ˜‰

    By the way, at hip hop class last week my teacher had us doing lots of b-girl style floor work and now now forearms and wrists are CRAZY sore!

  33. Karen says:

    Hi Anna,

    I do the same thing with collections all the time – I skip some so that I can splurge on others. I like to call it “makeup triage”, LOL. Heatherette looks like a lot of fun. A very sexy collection!

  34. Karen says:

    Thanks Miss Jeffrey! I hope you had a fabulous weekend. πŸ™‚

  35. Karen says:

    Hi Sophie,

    Yay! MAC haul time, woo hoo! What did you end up getting? πŸ™‚

  36. Karen says:

    Hi PeeChee!

    Ah yes, Groundwork Paint Pot rocks. It’s a good one. Paint Pots are so awesome though, and worthy editions to your MAC habit IMHO.

    I liked all of the Fafi Paint Pots (ouch, my wallet) but my faves were the Layin’ Low and Nice Vice. I’m kinda going through a purple phase right now, though, which is why I’m feeling ’em.

    And hello, I just might take you up on that offer next time I go all covert ops! πŸ™‚

  37. Karen says:

    Tekoa! That’s crazy that only one person got an invite. CRAZY! What the eff happened to the mail? That is one massive mix up. I’m guessing the incident left many a MAC addict feeling rejected, and quite lonely. Boo πŸ™

    On the other hand, I’m glad you got backstage access (holla!). What products did you pre-order? Getting any of the dolls or the bags (super cute!)? Call me crazy, but I kinda want the t-shirt, too.

  38. Karen says:

    Hiya Glosslizard,

    LOL, they totally should re-name it! Layin’ Low was one of my fave Paint Pots, for sure. And seriously, you won’t be disappointed by the lipsticks. I wish I could’ve actually tried a few on, but alas, that wasn’t in the cards. They did look pretty awesome on my arm though, ha!

  39. Karen says:

    Thanks Thushaa! I hope you had fun at the Fafi event today. πŸ™‚ Did you end up pre-ordering anything?

  40. Karen says:

    Hi Marina,

    Thanks girl! Have you recovered yet from Fashion Week? I hope so! Take care πŸ™‚

  41. Tekoa says:

    I preordered Rollickin, Nice Vice, and Cash Flow paint pots (though I could have gotten all of them! lol) both quads, Hipness blush, Sugar Trance lipgloss and Fun N Sexy, Strawbaby and High Top lipsticks. Oh-my-gosh High Top. Its shockingly pretty.

    No dolls, though I thought they were cute. I would like to have gotten a t-shirt and a tote bag buuuuuut all my money went to the makeup. Paint pots or bag? Lipsticks or t-shirt? The makeup won for me.

  42. shin says:

    hi there gorgeous πŸ™‚

    just wondering. did you get the shades for the lipsticks ‘flash n dash’ and ‘fun n sexy’ mixed up? i was just looking at the swatches from and kinda noticed the discrepancy. πŸ™‚

    thanks for the swatches anyhoo!

  43. Karen says:

    Hi Shin,

    Maybe. To tell you the truth it went by so fast and I could only do my best when it came to keeping track of things (with the whole covert ops happening it was kind of difficult). When I go back on the 13th I’ll be able to tell for sure.

    Christine and I also have very different skin tones so it could also be a matter of the colors looking very different on us. πŸ™‚

  44. Karen says:

    Hi Tekoa,

    Ohhh yeah, “Oh-my-gosh High Top.” SO TRUE!

    And the makeup always wins out in the end for me, too. πŸ˜‰

  45. Karen says:

    Hi Jen!

    Yay, thank you for saying Hi! LOL, so, I had my arm like that literally for HOURS. I couldn’t bear to wash the evidence of the successful mission off. Later on that night El Hub was like, “Um, are you EVER going to wash your arm?” I did, eventually.

    I don’t know if I’ll qualify for 007 status any time soon, but I’ll see what I can cook up for Heatherette, ha!

    It was good to meet you and I hope we get to chat again soon. πŸ™‚

  46. Karen says:

    Thank you Tania! You might be broke but you’re makeup will look hot, that’s for sure. πŸ™‚ I’ll be right there with you; we can go down in a spectacular flame of pink compact limited edition makeup!

  47. Lola says:

    Surprisingly, when i first went to the mac site to see the colors, i wasnt wowed at all by the colors. except the packaging. The packaging is gorgeous. THis is unusual for me. I stop spending money on practically everything to save up when i hear a new collection is coming out.
    Seeing the swatches really changed my mind. I love the blushes, paint pots, lipsticks, and the iridescent powders. Still not too crazy about the eyeshadows though. You definitely changed my mind. The artists at that store owe you! I’m sure I’m not the only one that wasnt wooed at first sight by viewing the collection on the mac site. Thanks a ton for going in james bond style!

  48. Karen says:

    Hi Lola,

    You’re welcome! πŸ™‚ Yep, I agree, the packaging is frickin’ awesome. I even like the boxes that the products come in (yes, I’m nuts).

    Let me know what you end up hauling home. Have a good week!

  49. Lilan says:

    Love the story! You always make your posts so fun – I wish I had an accomplice to help me scope out makeup joints, LOL πŸ™‚

    I agree, the Paint Pots look so pretty and fun! Not So Innocent lipstick looks pretty too, I can’t wait!

  50. Alicia says:

    Karen, thank you for going through so much for posting the pictures and swatches for us! I laughed so hard at the picture of you coming out of the MAC store with all the swatches on your arm. You are awesome!!:D

  51. christal says:

    WOW karen your the post is HILARIOUS!

    and to TEkoa: as if there was ONLY ONE person signed up for the fafi event, where I live (canada too) we had a store full of ppl, I did not get an invitation in the mail BUT I did happen to call the store for my fafi MAKEOVER, and the MA told me about the event on the phone so I was invited via phone, otherwise I wouldnt have been.

  52. Jennifer says:

    You’re so funny!! I love it. Sorry you had such a hard time getting your photos, but it made for a great story and experience! Isn’t the Fafi line so cute?! oh I saw you mentioned before in your blog one time how you had a horrific experience with benefit’s eye bright. That stick’s intentional use is to brighten up the eye area. When I first tried it, I learned that it really does work, but only on the fairer skinned! Determined to find a way for it to work for us warmer skinned folks, I discovered that you can use it to write over dark shadows under the eye. The pink color neutralizes the darkness so when you apply concealer over it, the cirlces are gone! (Cuz you know sometimes we put concealer and you can still see shadows) This helps so we don’t gotta use major thick concealer. I dunno….maybe I’m just delirious and forced myself to think it worked. ha!

  53. Ruth says:

    LOL. That was freaking awesome! So 007. Thanks for the great reporting! Can’t wait to buy one of those… well… everything!

  54. Vera says:

    It’s a good thing those MAs were busy. And I love the way your arm looked! I applaud you for working so hard for your readers. And thanks to El Hub for helping you out. I was also wondering which MAC store did you go to? Was it the one on Fillmore in SF? Just seeing that there’s no parking reminded me of SF. hehe Anywho, thank you!

  55. Mariah says:

    Haha! Good work, Agent Karen!! ROTFL! These are fabulous!! And we all love you for your covert ops! πŸ˜€

  56. Anne says:

    I went to the unveiling too! Damn chicks were seriously getting all crazy rowdy inside with their grubby hands. That sucks that your store wouldn’t let you. We were taking pictures left and right at ours. Some of the MUA even took a picture for us with the Fafinette that was at the store. It was just soo damn packed, stuffy, and hot inside. It was CHAOTIC!

    Well, you get the trooper award for the super swatched arms.

  57. Breezy says:

    OH my god Karen those Mac people were PUNKS!!! I totally had my camera on hand and didn’t have any issue snappin pics away tonight. Ugh, they were just being mean. Anyway, don’t you love the line? I had to get me one of the figurines for inspiration when I’m trying out some daring looks.

  58. Vanessa says:

    HAHAHA Karen you are hilarious! I enjoyed this post, I hate how they are so anal about their products when we even heard AND saw it first ONLINE before THEY did! Luckily my store allowed me to take as many pics as I wanted, LOL, but then again alcoholic beverages were being served so who knows if that played a factor in them being overly nice about it. πŸ™‚

    Good thing your hubby is in the getaway car! I gotta train my man to do the same! LOL.

  59. Julie says:

    Haha, that was so good to read. I LOVE IT!

    I’ve seen a gajillion (exaggeration but yknow!) swatches of the Hipness blush and every time I see it, I fall in love even more, LOL!

    Thank you for these swatches πŸ™‚

    Which of the paint pots would be good for a nice neutral base?

    Have a wonderful week and hope Monday won’t be too bad πŸ˜›

    My Monday is over, thank god! Another 4 sleeps to go until Fridaaay!!

  60. Anna22 says:

    Great post!!!

  61. Karen,

    Girllllll you are soooo James Bond!!! I totally have to get my tushy up to San Fran (on Feb. 21st!!) — meeting with Sephora. Let’s meet for coffee? I am only there for the day — any chance you could come to the city? And the next time you pull off a MAC caper like this — I want in — I will be the “distractor!”

  62. Erin says:

    Amazing job on your covert mission!!!! You really are the most diehard beauty blogger I know!!! Thanks girl!

  63. Becky says:

    Hey huni πŸ™‚ i loveeee this post and the swatches you got are very good compared to some other bloggers…

    i did a post on your mission so you can check it out here :

    πŸ™‚ Becky x

  64. Lea says:

    LOL. Karen – 1, MAC – 0 !! OMG you’re too much fun Karen. I’m not too hyped about the whole Fafi thing but count me in for conspiracies. I tell you if we were neighbors I would’ve been your accomplice! I would so distract everyone and be your photographer too. Jon Bon Jovi would be singing in the background for us …”we’re living on the edge”…Well done my friend!

    To be honest I’m not at all fussed about new collections, just as I’m not about new movie releases. Only once in a blue moon I’d join in the silliness and stand on queue for hours but most of the time I let other people do the test run for me. Don’t get me wrong I do appreciate the hard work you put in doing the swatches and all that, I’m just too lazy and frankly I’m not a MACaholic. I also read about the Fafi-artist who designed the collection and my heart sank when I learned she’s not even a make-up/MAC fanatic. Oh well, it’s all about the pigment and colors right?!

    Thanks again, you’re so entertaining!

  65. LaurenIvy says:

    LOLOLOLOLZ that’s hilarious!

    Nice work, 007, Code name Fabulous!

  66. Holly says:

    Hi Karen,
    Haha I was being a little dramatic when I said 3 years, there is an advertisement on the homepage of the Mac UK but no details yet so hopefully it won’t be too long until we get it over here! The sales girl put me on the mailing list anyway so i better get an invite to the launch!

  67. Becky says:

    hey holly… it comes to the uk 6th march

  68. Holly says:

    Hi Becky,

    Thanks! Im excited for paint pots now!!
    How did you find that out? Am I missing something major lol?

  69. Becky says:

    lol no problem

    i just know when they all come out! its easy once you know… here in the UK collections come out the month qafter US on the first thursday of the month

    check out my beauty blog:

  70. Aleks says:

    Whoa, lotsa comments since my last visit! πŸ˜€ Seems like people went crazy about your Fafi spy mission, lol. Well it’s great to meet you too, and to have found your blog! The only con is that I’ve lost my money on makeup, ahah. But I guess it ain’t that bad after all. πŸ™‚

    Every time I read American beauty blogs I get jealous because in Finland we don’t have Smashbox, Bobbi Brown, Nars etc. We got MAC less than a year ago (!!!), and it’s not even a MAC store, just a corner at a department store in Helsinki (the capital of Finland). And I do not happen to live in Helsinki, which means not much MAC for me even though I’m a big fan. Boo hoo. I’m hoping to get Cult Fave l/g and Utterly Frivolous l/s in case they some day arrive here, lol. What about you?

    I was also very happy to get a glimpse of SF, one of my dream travel destinations. It looked so pretty and sunny there. πŸ™‚ In Finland it’s gray, humid and icy at the moment, err..

    Enjoy your day! Here it’s already 8.20pm πŸ˜€

  71. thanks so much for getting the pics and the swatches james bond-style.

  72. Joy says:

    OMG that’s awesome! You are too funny and so dedicated! Thanks for breaking some rules to get us some pics!!!

  73. Bgirldskco says:

    That’s so awesome that you were doing floorwork in your hip hop class! Yeah my wrists will still hurt doing some poses after all these years, but it’s still a lot of fun. Woo hoo!
    I’ll let ya know what things I buy =)
    Thanks for having sucha great blogggg

  74. kia says:

    awww karen see what you do for us?! how special. thanks!! so what are you buying?

  75. Megan says:

    LOL that’s hilarious…seriously you need a wingwoman…because I am awesome at distraction. πŸ™‚ At my girlfriend’s wedding she was so stressed out…and her mom was giving her fits…I totally ran distraction at the rehearsal dinner and before the wedding so she could get some sips in without her mom seeing.

  76. Karen says:

    Hi Lilan,

    Thanks, Ms. Thing. Did you have fun in Tahoe with your moms? I hope so!

    Can’t wait to see what you haul home on the 13th. Happy Monday πŸ™‚

  77. Karen says:

    Hi Alicia,

    LOL, you are welcome! The super spy thing was fun for one afternoon. πŸ™‚ Do you know yet what your Fafi loot is going to be?

  78. Karen says:

    Hiya Christal,

    That’s awesome that you got a phone invite! Did you have fun? I hope you took a lot of pics πŸ˜‰

  79. Karen says:

    Hi Jennifer,

    First off, I gotta say your MAC counter is my *favorite*. I love everybody who works there and ya’ll are the best! I will hopefully see you there on the 13th.

    And oh, yes, the Benefit eyebright! It’s been years since I’ve used it but what you’ve written makes a lot of sense. I use illuminators sometimes underneath my MAC concealer if the shadows are really bad. Next time I head to the store I’ll try and snag a sample and do this at home. Thanks for the tip! Happy Monday!

  80. Karen says:

    Woo hoo, Ruth! You’re welcome. I know you’re getting everything (yay) but your heart will beat a lil’ faster when you see those Paint Pots…seriously awesome. πŸ™‚

  81. Karen says:

    Hiya Vera,

    You are so very astute with your no-parking observation! In true super spy style, I can neither confirm nor deny whether or not that was the Fillmore Store (but girl, I think you know already!).

  82. Karen says:

    Mariah!!! Thanks, girlfriend! πŸ™‚ Are you getting any Fafi? For some reason I see you as a total Fafi type of girl. πŸ™‚

  83. ponikuta says:

    Dayum girl, you are crazzzzzyyy !!!

  84. Lea says:

    Oooopsie, I meant “living on the edge” by Aerosmith. d’uh!

  85. Lipglossme says:

    This post is so funny. I have this vision of you with a rope tied around your waist and hanging off the MAC store ceiling swatching away on your arm. Every time a MA would come by you’d spring back up to take cover then reel yourself down again when the coast was clear.

    Those paint pots are truly gorgeous. I want all of them. I really want the blushes and the lipsticks too.

  86. aero says:

    I was lucky enough to attend the MAC release in LA yesterday and I got my hands on a bunch of dolls and scarfs. My girlfriend purchased a bunch of makeup from the line and we were both very happily caught up in the hype. After getting home we looked at the new line more closely and were shocked at the cheap less than amazing packaging. As a fan of Fafi’s other products such as bags and toys, i am shocked at the low level of quality put into the final packaging for the new line. I am glad to hear in the interview that she seems to have taken a hands off approach to this line, but it is disrespectfull to her reputation what mac has done. With the Barbie line the compacts had engraved barbie faces in the powders and many amazing boxes and accessories. THE FAFI LINE IS FAR LESS DETAILED.

    The lip gloss boxes are nothing more than regular mac boxes with fafi slip covers, the lip gloss itself is a regular mac package with a cheap plastic fafi shrink cover on the lid. The same amount of quality found in a bic lighter with a plastic picture sleeve. something that will fade, chip and peel quickly. The compacts are black plastic with cheap silkscreened plastic fafi stickers mounted to the top, the stickers are also poorly printed with several inks printed offset (not aligned correctly).

    The dolls are cool, and so im happy about that but i was just shocked after the buildup and the amount of quality stuff that fafi does. What mac has done is bad for the FAFI brand imo, and really has turend me off to the whole company. The barbie line had so much thought and care to detail, this whole line looks like it was thrown together under budget in the last few weeks.

    my 2 cents, and like i said, im glad fafi had her hands off on this one, cause besides her fabulous graphics, everything else is just ghetto.

  87. Karen says:

    Hi Anne,

    Thanks girl. I hope you had a good time at the unveiling and that you got some goooood pictures. I can imagine all of the craziness; there’s been so much hype about the release and I think it’s making the MACaholics a bit rabid, ha!

    Maybe I’ll be a Fafinette for Halloween…

  88. Karen says:

    Heya Breezy,

    The dolls are *really* cute. And the bags, oh la la. I love almost everything in the line – I’ll have to spend some more time contemplating the quads, which are so pretty on the outside but don’t do much for me in terms of the shadows. Did you get some good pics? And more importantly, what are you taking home?!?! πŸ™‚

  89. Karen says:

    Hi Vanessa!

    Oh yeah, I’m sure your man will be a willing conspirator – most will do ANYTHING to stay out of the store, ha ha ha!

    It sounds like the party at your store was super fun, I’m a lil’ jealous!

  90. Karen says:

    Heya Julie,

    You are welcome…and I agree, Hipness = Hotness. I want it, too!

    For the Paint Pots, girl, get every one of ’em is my official story and I’m sticking to it! πŸ˜‰ But the best ones that do a lot for my neutral loving soul are Perky, Layin’ Low, Girl Friendly and Nice Vice.

  91. Karen says:

    Thanks Anna22! Have a good week, girl!

  92. Karen says:

    LOL, Melissa, okay, homie, I’ll put you on the list of MAC Mission co-conspirators!

    February 21st is a Thursday, yah? Crap! I gotta work that day, boo! What time will you be around?

  93. Karen says:

    Hi Erin,

    Awww, you are welcome, girlfriend! You know you gotta do what you gotta do in the name of MAC, LOL!

    Have a faboooo week!

  94. Karen says:

    Hiya Becky,

    Thanks for the mention, my dear! Is your Fafi list all ready? Whatcha gonna pick up on the 13th?

  95. Becky says:

    hey karen no problem πŸ™‚
    well im in the UK so we dont get fafi till march 6th πŸ™
    im really loving Utterly frivolous l/s, cult fave l/g, nice vice, perky and cashflow paint pots, fafi eyes 1 quad and i love the dolls! i will probably end up getting more though


  96. Karen says:

    Hi Lea,

    Yay, girl, I would’ve totally recruited you. There is strength in makeup spy numbers!

    You’re not a MACaholic, that’s cool. I love the brand but also fall in/out of love with lots of other lines as well (currently obsessed with NARS). Are you devoted to any other makeup brand, or do you just pick and choose from different ones?

  97. Karen says:

    Hiya LaurenIvy,

    That’s a great code name. Now only if I could get some super cute spy gear so that I could live up to it fully! πŸ˜‰

    Happy Monday!

  98. Karen says:

    LOL, Holly! Yeah, I figured as much! You’ll be all prepared now for when it drops on your side of the pond on the 6th, wheeeee!

  99. Karen says:

    Hi Aleks,

    You would love SF, especially when it was sunny. If you ever plan on going come during the September or October. We get an Indian summer and the best weather happens during those months. Trust me, it ain’t always this sunny here – lots of fog and cool temps, so when the sun shines everybody goes NUTS.

    As for Fafi, I think I’m going to get the Paint Pots, for sure. I was all about the lipsticks the other day, but this morning I took one look at all of my lipsticks and I thought, “Hmmm…the last thing that I need is another tube, crap.” It will all depend on how I’m feeling that day and what they actually look like on my lips.

    I hate to feed your makeup fire but another great American Brand is Laura Mercier. I fell totally in love with it a year ago, especially the powders, foundations and the color line.

  100. Karen says:

    Hey there Live Fabulously,

    You’re so welcome! Have a great week. πŸ™‚

  101. Karen says:

    Hi Joy,

    It’s all about rule breaking, girlfriend, when it comes to makeup! LOL! Seriously, glad you liked the swatches. Any Fafi in your immediate future?

  102. Karen says:

    Hey Bgirldskco,

    You’re my hero – I can barely do any poses, I just sort of fake it and get where I need to be on eight, HA! Enjoy your Fafi run! Can’t wait to hear what you snag. πŸ™‚

  103. Karen says:

    Miss Kia!!!!

    Probably all the Paint Pots. Maybe a lippie or two. How about your self? I can totally see you rocking the quad with the green shadow.

  104. Angela says:


    I bow to you and your sleuthing skills.

    The picture of you after your swatching success is hilarious. πŸ™‚

  105. Karen says:

    Hiya Megan,

    Seriously, you’re a good friend. Every bride needs a wingwoman on her wedding day to provide the distraction so she can get her drink on, LOL! Next time in DC and on a secret mission you are the first person I’ll call!!!!

  106. Karen says:

    LOL, thanks Ponikuta. You gotta do what you gotta do! πŸ™‚

  107. Karen says:

    Hi Lea,

    Right after I read your comment I had to bust that Aerosmith song out! πŸ˜‰

  108. Rowena says:


    I am serious! How many of us are going to buy something from Fafi now because you swatched or recommended it. Tut tut tut. I think you should have whacked them over the head with your handbag, snapped and ran.

  109. Karen says:

    Heya Lipglossme!

    Ahhh, yes, super spy ceiling equipment! Every secret agent needs a rig like that! I bet you one could find that somewhere on the internet.

    Yay! We’ll be in Fafi Paint Pot land together. Will you be snagging your goodies on the 13th, or have you already pre-ordered?

  110. Karen says:

    Hi Aero,

    Sounds like you’re a Fafi fan – bummer that it didn’t live up to your expectations. At least you got the dolls, as they are very cute.

  111. Karen says:

    Hi Becky,

    March 6th isn’t that far away! You can hold on till then (can you? j/k).

    “I will probably end up getting more though.” Seriously, girl…those are famous last words for many a makeup fan.


  112. Hey Karen,

    I will be firming up my trip in the next few days and I will let you know the who, what, where….I have a big meeting with Sephora and I am not sure if I will be staying over or leaving the same day! I will get back to ya!

  113. Mrs. Lynne says:

    I was all over the paint pots. I have now increased that collection by 6 πŸ˜‰ WOoT!! Got my mitts on a quad that I’m still debating on keeping, and 2 sets of each doll. That is my key to my kids’ futures, lol.

  114. Lea says:

    Sorry didn’t see your question until now. Yes I do have MAC items that I use every once in a while like the Paint and liquid liner and some eye shadow but these are stuff I’ve had for a while now or was given to me as gifts. Now and then I get a little curious or adventurous and I buy from department store or drugstore. But the past months I have been very good with sticking to products that have no mineral oil, no animal products or animal-byproducts(vegan approved), hypoallergenic, pH correct, less than 1% chemicals or dyes. I know it sounds a bit silly and over the top but we all have preferences when it comes to skincare and make-up, and mine isn’t cheap but I’m very pleased with my products. One day, if you’re interested I will send you over some stuff to sample!

  115. Aleks says:

    Thanks for the tip! I’ll keep those months in mind for the future. πŸ™‚

    I guess most of us have way too many lipsticks (and glosses, too!), but in case you find something superb, you’d better get it now since they’re LE after all and it’ll be too late soon πŸ˜€ I don’t exactly need any glosses either, but I can’t help myself sometimes, lol.

    Have a great day! Looking forward to your new posts! πŸ™‚

  116. Susanne says:

    Thanks so much for sharing this with us, Karen!! Well done πŸ˜‰

  117. Susanne says:

    And I really love your pictures.

  118. Victoria says:

    That was freakin awesome!! For what it’s worth I think your swatches are better than most of the other blogs swatches I have seen!! Way to go- super slick spy moves!! Loving your blog.. Love the crazy cat pics!! Stay creative -way to go K power!!

  119. Lilan says:

    I had a ton of fun in Tahoe with the Moms. Now I’m just counting down the hours until the Fafi release. I think it’ll be a nice reward for myself for going to the dentist, don’t you think? πŸ˜‰

  120. Meredith says:

    YOU ARE FREAKING AWESOME!! LOVE the dedication!!

    By the way-I’m a cosmetic mgr for Nordies – we allow pictures there!! Stop by next time!!

  121. Karen says:

    Thanks Susanne! πŸ™‚ Hope you had a great Friday!

  122. Karen says:

    Will do Meredith! Are you in the Bay Area?

  123. eileen says:

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! THIS IS TOO HILARIOUS! I loved your detective work…you pulled it off lovely! I got the MAC Fafi
    MAC Fafi Powder Blush in Fashion Frenzy and Iridescent Powder ib Verve-Acious the day they came out!

    eileen’s last blog post..Color Fever Shine Pixel Pink

  124. Karen says:

    Hi Eileen,

    OH, those are two good ones. I love Fashion Frenzy. I wore it this weekend to the movies πŸ™‚

    Are you excited about Heatherette?

  125. Eileen says:

    I’M SO EXCITED FOR HEATHERETTE…OMG! I’m saving my money so I can just splurge (being a makeup obsessed college student is tough when you’re- well- a broke college student at the same time)…I can’t wait

    Eileen’s last blog post..Color Fever Shine Pixel Pink

  126. Mary says:

    Lol…nice. Thanks for taking the risk..only a true journalist would do that!

  127. Tabz says:

    This is hilarious! The MOST hilarious thing I’ve read all month! I’m sure if you came into our store they would let you take photos! Hell as soon as the new collections come out I’m snapping away while my fellow mac co-workers roll their eyes and look at me with despair (yes I am addicted, yes it is sad, but who cares!) Good job with the swatches! And good luck in future photo-taking endeavors! :0)

  128. reesa says:

    hey karen..

    could i ask.. since im not familiar with mac cosmetics.. could different colored paint pots (besides soft ochre) used as a primer or base… and by the way that mac store looks familiar.. is that the one on burlingame?? i never really went into mac stores .. i always saw the mac counter.. what’s the difference between the store and the counter?

  129. Jody says:


    OMG! You are hilarious, and not to mention awesome for getting those swatches and photos! Ha, I laughed out loud when I read it. I just discovered your site recently and I am really enjoying it and also going broke trying to buy up discontinued Mac stuff on ebay. Thanks for doing what you do!!! You are a hero, a Mac hero!!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Jody,

      It’s nice to meet another fellow MAC addict!

      What MAC stuff are you trying to get on eBay? Also, have you heard of the Cosmetics Company Store? They sell discontinued MAC stuff, too.

  130. Jody says:

    So nice to hear from you! Oh Karen, where do I begin? It all started when I came across a review for Mac’s Lollipop Loving, this leading to Fleshpot and than to Bonus Beat lipgloss, and so on and so on, now I am about 30 Mac lipsticks/lipgloss’s later and I cant stop! I just received Mac’s Snowscene today and I love it! The good news is that I really do like most of them but there are some that I just cant make work but now I have started on the eyeshadows, trying to find the best colors to create a smokey eye. I have Fluidline in Dipdown which I love, but I want something to go with it. I love dark browns, black, & blues. Right now in my Mac cart I have Carbon, Femmi Fi, Concrete and Deep truth. What do you think of those? I have found some Mac items on a site called All Cosmetics Wholesale, I havn’t come across any fakes yet that I know of. lol And now I am off to check out Cosmetics Company store!

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