Okay so I know MAC says you can use these over powder but I wouldn't. They don't really blend and then you get this clunky mess. My fave way to apply these are to dab with a fingertip or a small foundation brush onto the high planes of the face.
These also tone down lipstick, work as fine eyeshadow bases (especially nice as highlights on the browbone) and anywhere you'd like a bit of shimmer. After applying, I then set them with a highlighting powder like Superb Mineralize Skinfinish or Silver Dusk Iridescent powder. Shell is also lovely along the vertical lines of the tibias (shinbone) over a tan- beautiful shimmering legs!
Below is a close-up of Shell.
It applies like a creamy beige with a golden highlight effect- very pearled. I like this on any skin tone- even very fair can wear this.
Below is Pearl. It's a very yellowed ivory pearled shade. This one is a wonderful way to get that 'dewy' look. I dab this onto the cheekbones, down the bridge of the nose and off center on the forehead slightly, cupid's bow and central chin. Then I blend (emphasis on cheekbones) and set with a highlighting powder, once the foundation is on (I use a dewy foundation like Chanel Vitalumiere) and it's gorgeous and youthful, very fresh looking.
I think it's worth mentioning too that they tend to set quickly. Once you dab them on, unless you have a more moist surface (man I hate that word, moist, gah!) but seriously, if you have a dry powdered face, these will stick pretty quickly. I'd suggest blending these on warm, well-moisturized skin, over foundation- then powder. Using them over powder will cake, so yeah...smooth to smooth is my motto when mixing products.
Below are the colors offered by MAC (their swatches). I'm lemming Luna, Hush, Improper Copper, and Take Root (contouring)...do you own any of these? If so, what's your take?
Have a fabulous, cream color based day!