mac lipstick swatches


Black Dahlia: Deep, Dark, Luscious Lip Colors from Sheer to Intense

I have a weakness for deep dark black-cherry shades. But while all of them look intensely dark in the tubes, many of them are actually quite sheer or have different undertones. 


  • A black cherry lip that has a bit of red/berry tone actually brightens the face and the darker/richer your skintone, the blacker you can go on the lips without having to change the makeup on the rest of your face. 
  • If you’re very pale and you like dark lips, you might need to add a bit of warmth back to your cheeks with a blush that has some pink/red in it if you don’t want to look straight-up goth or 20’s Noir. Then again, I do love 20’s Noir makeup with smoky droopy eyes and deep dark lips.
  • Sheerer berry shades can look very patchy and uneven. The best way to wear it is as an ombre stain. Apply, blot to remove most of the color, then reapply just around the center or the entire bottom lip, and then transfer just a bit of color to the top.
  • For deep dark shades, do try to wear a lip liner or clear liner to prevent bleeding cos it will be VERY obvious.

The shades shown: (Tumblr isn’t rendering the lip images properly so check it out here if you can’t see it clearly!)

  • YSL Rouge Volupté Sheer Candy in No 5 Mure Exquise is a more berry/rose-toned version of Clinique Black Honey, which can pull a little brown and unflattering on me sometimes.
  • Michael Kors Lip Lacquer in Dame. This is actually not a fave. It’s almost impossible to wear this evenly unless you have very rosy or dark lips to begin with. If you’re not careful, you can end up with patchy, corpse-like lips.
  • Chanel Glossimer 176 Crushed Cherry. Gorgeous gloss that pulls a little purple. It’s gorgeous on top of nude liner and glorious applied around the center over red lipstick!
  • Shu Uemura Gloss Unlimited WN 20 S is a raisiny deep shade with soft shimmers. If you want a less cool-toned alternative to the Chanel, or a slightly more even application, this one is good.
  • Marc Jacobs 132 Saboteur is the darkest shade in his range, and unlike Little Pretty, the next darkest purple-toned shade, this one has a bit more red and goes on more evenly and more opaque.
  • Chanel Rouge Allure Velvet 327 La Desiree. It’s amazing how “bright” it looks compared to the other shades here! But it’s really quite a deep and rich rose-red shade in a velvety lightweight matte texture.
  • MAC Diva is a classic. It’s one of my all-time favorite dark liver reds. While it looks a little plummy and dull here, believe me when I say it looks beautiful on the lips. Perfect when you have hardly anything on your face except a little mascara and this dark, rich, intense lip. 
  • Sephora Long Lasting Lipstick No 23. This is a nice alternative to MAC Diva, but it’s a little creamier to apply, and more lightweight. Doesn’t wear as intense and dramatic as Diva in real life though.
  • OCC Black Dahlia is one of the treasures in my Lip Tar collection. I knew I had to have it the moment I saw it. It’s a perfect black cherry red. So dark it’s almost black. For a 20’s look, this is a fantastic shade.
  • OCC Metallic Black Dahlia is one of my more recent purchases. I was repurchasing Pretty Boy, and saw this shade on their site. I usually steer away from the metallic shades because a lot of the lighter colors I’d tried previously went on patchy and looked unflattering, but obviously the same thing doesn’t apply to the dark shades because this thing is GLORIOUS.


MAC Retro Matte Liquid Lipsticks - FINALLY

Yaaaaasss. They are finally here.

I remember some time around May or so last year, I sent a frenzied text to someone in Estee Lauder asking when the “new matte liquid lipsticks” would be available. I’d seen makeup legend Val Garland mention them online and couldn’t wait to see these for myself. (Little did I know it would be 2016 before they were actually launched.)

Still, much better late than never! 

Retro Matte Liquid Lipsticks will launch in Singapore on 8 Jan (SGD$39), and I have 8 of the 9 available shades here for review, but haven’t had time to do lip swatches of these but I just had to get the wrist swatches up first. Honestly, they are so opaque anyway that what you see here will be what you get on your lips.

I’ll say from first impressions that:

  • they dry completely matte; more matte than the regular Retro Matte lipsticks, which is normal for liquid lipsticks which contain no waxes or oils
  • these take a couple of minutes to dry and set (after which they become transfer-proof), so make sure your lips are clean and don’t press your lips together for awhile or you risk messing them up
  • you should apply most of the product onto the center of your lips first, then slowly push and spread outwards so that you don’t end up with less color in the center and a weepy thick mess around the edges of your lips, as the doe foot applicators have a tendency to push product away from the center and concentrate them outwards
  • they do break down when in contact with oil/grease, as with any lip product, so you can’t put gloss over these without breaking down the formula
  • these are extremely long-wearing so make sure you have cream or oil-based (or at least dual-phase oil-on-water) removers handy; I couldn’t get most of the stronger shades cleaned off with micellar liquid OR wipes
  • I didn’t notice any darkening of the shades during my first try - many liquid lipsticks set and then slowly darken or change color on the skin over the next 15-30 mins
  • they WILL feel dry on the lips - let’s just be honest - I haven’t met a transfer-resistant lipstick that didn’t feel dry; they can’t have any emollients and be truly transfer proof at the same time

All in all, in terms of texture and performance, they are exactly what I expected them to be. 

The great thing is the colors are truly beautiful. I only wish there were more shades as the only con is a lack of more neutral, mauve-y, rosy lip-toned shades, warmer pinks or deep dark shades. Still, they’re launching an additional 6 shades in March 2016, so that should be cool.

I want a dark russet brown, dark purple, a blackened cherry…..

12 MAC Liners for All Melt Cosmetics Lipsticks

(Melt lipsticks pictured on the left with corresponding MAC liner on the right)

  1. Blow - Minted Eye Kohl
  2. Bane - Smolder Eye Kohl
  3. DGAF - Marine Ultra Chromagraphic Pencil
  4. 6six6 - Currant Lip Pencil
  5. By Starlight - Magenta Lip Pencil
  6. Space Cake - Greyprint Technakohl Liner
  7. Shady Lady - Process Magenta Chromagraphic Pencil
  8. Belladonna 2 - Cherry Lip Pencil
  9. Bang! Bang! - What A Blast! Pro Longwear Lip Pencil
  10. Darling - Hip ‘N’ Happy Lip Pencil
  11. Stupid LoveProcess Magenta Chromagraphic Pencil
  12. Summer! - Lasting Sensation Lip Pencil

Click here to view my previous post!


MAC Toledo Collection - So much Pretty!

The Toledo collection from MAC is probably one of the most exciting Spring 2015 makeup releases for me, because there are so many fun colors. AND - best of all, 6 new matte lipsticks, which I love. 

There are also the a few Blush Ombres, which I’d wanted when they first came out in a collection a few years ago, but didn’t get a chance to own. I’ve actually swatched everything, and there are too many pictures to load on Tumblr, so hop on over to for a look and my run-down on all the shades, what’s hot, what’s not, and also ombre swatches of the blushes!

The collection launches 27 Feb in Sephora, 3 March island-wide in Singapore


6 Flattering Summery Lip Tones I Love!

Summer is the perfect time for light makeup, black kitten liner, dewy skin, and a bright pop of lip color to accessorize your entire face.

It’s like wearing a plain white sundress with sandals and carrying a kick-ass turquoise Givenchy bag. Low-maintenance but chic.

But there are so many colors; which one to choose? Above are some of my faves - without bordering into the red lip territory - and below are some alternatives. 

  1. True orange: MAC Morange, and for the brave… OCC Beta, Lime Crime My Beautiful Rocket, or MAC Tangerine Dream
  2. Rosier/Redder-orange: MAC Neon Orange, Maybelline Electric Orange, Revlon Coral
  3. Salmon Coral: Estee Lauder Pure Color 07 Crystal Fantasy, Maybelline Coral Crush, NYX Femme, Cover Girl Fairytale
  4. Rose-Coral: MAC Impassioned, OCC Harlot, Chi Chi Fashion Police
  5. Barbie pink: MAC Pink Nouveau. Barry M Lip Paint 146 Dolly Pink, Maybelline Pink Pop
  6. Magenta: Shu Uemura Tint In Gelato AT02, Maybelline Fuchsia Flash, MAC Flat Out Fabulous, MAC Violetta

MAC Cosmetics Lipstick Swatches!

I thought I would swatch all of my MAC lipsticks after a few people asked for my favourites, so here they are, from top to bottom and left to right:

  1. Morange, Scarlet Ibis, So Chaud, Must Be Red!, Viva Glam Rihanna, Charmed I’m Sure, True Love’s Kiss, Russian Red, Ruby Woo, Absolute Power
  2. Love’s Goddess, All Fired Up, Flat Out Fabulous, New York Apple, Viva Glam IV, Up The Amp, Violetta, Heroine, Odyssey, Rebel
  3. Snob, Pink Plaid, Viva Glam Nicki, Bombshell, Aristocat, Plum Dandy, Creme De La Femme, Candy Yum Yum, Impassioned, Relentlessly Red, Moxie, Milan Mode
  4. Sushi Kiss, Reel Sexy, Sweet Sunrise, “Sandy B”, To Catch A Sailor, Enchanted One, Ramblin’ Rose, Velvet Teddy, Drive Me Wild, Shag, Sin

My favourite formulas are matte, retro matte and amplified, and some of my favourite shades at the moment are Enchanted One (a gorgeous nude), “Sandy B” (just adds a golden sheen to my lips), Creme De La Femme (for everyday wear), Moxie (my go to slightly-dark bright pink), Violetta (a gorgeous purple), Absolute Power (my favourite matte red from MAC, sorry Ruby Woo), and Morange (a friend of mine who passed away always wore this, so I like wearing it to try and channel some of her fabulousness). 

Some of these shades are limited edition, but if there’s a particular shade you have a question about, message me and I’ll try and assist! Remember you can click the photos to see the full sized versions.