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Monday, July 7, 2014

Swatches of 18 MAC Lip Pencils: From Kim Kardashian's Favorite to Mine

Gotta get it just right
[thx Tumblr]

Hi there!

However way you line your lips, you're likely to run into MAC's lip liners.  MAC's lip pencils have a cult following and rightly so, they perform wonderfully every time for me.  I find myself with a stash of lip pencils and inherently reaching for my MAC shades.  They make the perfect beige pink and seem to make liners that blend and last.  Adding a lip pencil to your routine sometimes seems like going full out but it helps your lipstick from bleeding, can give depth to your mouth, and helps with color adhesion and durability.

MAC's lip pencils have graced plenty of celeb pouts. Kim Kardashian loves Stripdown and pairs it with MAC Angel and Nars Turkish Delight gloss for her patent pink lip.  Her mom Kris wears Cherry with her red mouth and Khloe has been known to wear Spice.  Kourtney has worn Nightmoth more than once for a dark, velvety lip- but beyond the Kardashians (whose makeup I think is major) these are a makeup artist staple.  I've got all four of those Kardashian-beloved lip pencils to share with you.  If you want a screaming pink like the .gif above try Dynamo (pro longwear formula) and I've even got that one too!

Here are 18 of MAC's most beloved lip pencils- colors that I've found to match almost any lip look I want to try and a staple of my matching MAC lip trios.  Hope you find the one you're looking for and a few you'll fall in love with either for the first time or all over again.

Should you want to purchase, these sell for $15.00 each and have 1.45 g of product.  Purchase HERE.

I arranged these based on the pencils' color topped ends from light to dark in each shade- I tried to make a rainbow.

It looks like a strip of warm brown-pinks and in some ways these are my favorites.  But you'll see as we keep going that although the pencil end may look similar, each shade has it's own unique color.  I also grouped them this way so you could make comparisons between each pencil and maybe decide between one or the other (or both)!

All of these but 2 are the standard Lip Pencil, with the two that aren't being Pro Longwear Formula.  The differences I've noticed are that the pro longwear pencils are slightly smaller in product (1.2 g compared to the lip pencil's 1.45 g), cost more ($19.50 compared to $15.00) and apply with a more waxen feel lending to a creamier yet more likely to pill up or break type of texture.  Yet if you want a mega pink like I did either you get the Chromagraphic pencil or Chromacake or get the pro longwear in Dynamo, which is what I did.

Here are more peeks at the pencils!

Swatches were drawn without primer, from the pencil on to the back of my hand.  I photographed them in natural sunlight indoors.  This first set are the more neutral colors with one rather cheerful pink and spicey russet red.

1.  Etcetera- warm rosy tan
2.  Stone- neutral grey brown
3.  Oak- light tan
4.  Stripdown- medium tan
5.  Spice- warm sienna with pink leaning
6.  Boldy Bare- rosy mauve
7.  Subculture- medium blush pink
8.  Hover- warm golden brown pink
9.  Auburn- terracotta red
10.  Hip N' Happy- cool toned pastel pink

Here is a photo without the names, a bit closer so you can look at the color.

Next up are 8 more shades, leaning to a more rich, dark color family.  Like the ones above that look similar (Oak and Stripdown) you'll see a few that might serve if you're wondering if you should get one or the other. Here are 8 more pencils to check out-

1.  Soar- mauve pink
2.  Dervish- soft country pink
3.  Chicory- warm tanned mauve
4.  Lasting sensation- vibrant coral
5.  Dynamo- vivid hot pink
6.  Cherry- bright blue based red
7.  Nightmoth- deep blackened plum
8.  Currant- aubergine

Nightmoth and Currant often get confused, with Currant getting overlooked in favor of Nightmoth.  I found that if you want a more purple hue, go with Currant whereas Nightmoth can blend more brown and blackened shades without leaning too purple.  Soar and Dervish are similar in hue but Dervish tends to apply slightly more soft pink and less opaque.  Cherry however, is gawjus.

Did you see any that you liked?  My favorites out of these are Auburn, Oak, Stone (my favorite fave, lol), and Dynamo with Nightmoth pulling in as a fave too.  Let me know if these swatches helped you make a purchasing decision or if you've found a new shade to love.

Here are some pros/cons I've found with these pencils if you're wondering between one of these and a more cost-effective liner like say, Nyx.

Pros of these pencils-
1.  Apply true to color on the pencil (no guessing)
2.  Long lasting- up to 4 hours post meal
3.  Prevent feathering of lip color
4.  Lots of neutrals to pick from
5.  Can mimic celeb looks

Cons of these pencils-
1.  Expensive compared to other products that perform as well
2.  Rather small if you go the pro-longwear route (yet the cheaper Jordana lipliners might be cheaper but far less product)
3.  Few very bright versions or creative colors- you'll have to go to the pro products for more vibrance to match your OCC lip tars :)
4.  Some crumbling with the pro-longwear formula and less opaque shades like Dervish

Overall however, these pencils from MAC are my go-to lip liners.  I feel like they're the standard lip pencil for just about anyone who wears lipstick and you can't go wrong with something tried and true.

Shop the swatches

Have a great day,



Somehow I've never gotten into the habit of using lip liners; and I have quite a few. You may have just inspired me to dig mine out and put them to use!

Baroque In Babylon said...

Hi Tender- let me know if you start using them. I didn't use liners for a long time. But then I started having feathering and they convinced me of their worth. I love your hair btw.

Kadie Lee Silva said...

If I wasn't already in need of Subculture - I am even more now!

tania said...

I have the one in boldly bare, and I totally love it!!

Baroque In Babylon said...

Thanks Kadie- oh it's a good one! Hi Tania- I agree, Boldly Bare is so wearable.

Pat said...

This is a PERFECT post. So helpful and detailed. Thank you so much!