Sunday, June 8, 2014

MAC Prep + Prime BB Cream; Beauty Balm COMPACT SPF 30; Review & Swatches of Shades

Mac Prep + Prime BB Cream; Compact Beauty Balm
Price: $30 for 8 grams
Approx $2.75/gram

Believe it or not, my makeup conquest initially surrounded one thing; finding a dupe for my Mac Studio Stick Foundation in NC25. Seriously, this led me to trying more than 100 foundations & concealers, buying a Studio Stick on ebay for an arm & a leg, and then realizing, maybe, just maybe, I had over glorified its performance & I already had dozens of products that did an equally good, if not better job. Then Mac released their Prep + Prime Beauty Balm BB Compact....I had all but given up hope. I figured there was no product on the market made by any company which performed as well as Mac Studio Stick, or that matched it shade wise in NC25. Then Prep + Prep BB Beauty Balm Compact SPF 30 was released, but only in three shades initially: Extra Light, Light, & Light Plus.  It turns out that Light Plus is an exact match for my beloved Studio Stick in NC25, but, since I don't tan anymore, its too dark for me. Figures, you want something so badly when you finally get it you're disapointed!

Anyhoo, Light Plus IS workable for me, especially now that its summer. I also have this in Extra Light, which is a tad too light, so the two together make a beautiful match for my skin. I really do love this foundation. I know its considered a "BB Compact," but its a foundation. Coverage is sheer-medium, but its a fuller sheer-medium if that makes sense? Basically, its as Mac describes, a "sheer wash" but it does a great job of evening out imperfections for everyday wear, while still looking natural. It also works famously under makeup meaning you need less foundation for full coverage, and suddenly, you can transition seamlessly from day to night or casual to dress with fewer steps, just add foundation & go.

Now, this IS emollient based. I would NOT recommend this for those with oily skin because of its composition. People with oily skin may find that this has a "greasy" feel initially, but for those with normal-dry skin who give it a try, they will see that the "greasy" aspects are extremely lightweight and absorb flawlessly into the skin after providing more than ample slip to allow you to get it into place, regardless of if you use a brush, sponge or fingers!

I mentioned in my review for Mac's Pro Longwear Compact SPF 20 which was just release last month, that that particular formula works very well with the composition of Mac Prep + Prime BB Compact, and it does. Because the Pro Longwear Compact is a drying formula with a powdery finish, the BB Compact works great underneath the Longwear Compact as a primer to moisturize the skin and prevent any clinging to dry patches and what not. (Again, for oily skinned folks, I wouldn't recommend this and I would suggest using a silicone primer under Pro Longwear Compact & a powder over it,  to control oil.)

Mac Prep + Prime BB Beauty Balm Compact; SPF 30: Review & Swatches of Shades; Extra Light, Light, Light + Plus, Medium, Medium + Plus. Medium Dark, Dark, Dark + Plus, Dark Deep.
Mac Prep + Prime BB Beauty Balm Compact; SPF 30:
Swatches of Shades; Extra Light, Light, Light Plus, Medium, Medium Plus'
Medium Dark, Dark, Dark Plus, Dark Deep
Mac Prep + Prime BB Beauty Balm Compact; SPF 30: Review & Swatches of Shades;
Mac Prep + Prime BB Beauty Balm Compact; SPF 30:
Swatches of Shades; Extra Light, Light, Light +Plus, Medium, Medium +Plus.
Medium Dark, Dark, Dark +Plus, Dark Deep
This is definitely a formula which you'll likely either love or hate depending on your skin type, but personally I LOVE it, (and I love the SPF 30 although I don't use this as my sole source of sun protection!)

Paula Begoun's team rated it only a GOOD on account of the fragrence which was included but I can't detect any added smell so its not noticeable. For the longest time, I was stumped to find a Dupe for this that was cruelty free, but then, I found Physicians Formula Super BB All-in-1 Beauty Balm Compact Cream SPF 30 which has a very similar formula and costs half the price. The only difference is the lack of shades Physicians Formula offers, but if you are Light Plus-Medium Plus in Mac Prep+Prime, you'll be fine. In fact, Light Plus from Mac is so close to Physicians Formula in Light, that I have said its the closest dupe from unaffiliated brands!

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