30 Oct 2013

Going Nude: MAC Paint Pots v Pro Longwear Paint Pots

MAC Paint Pots & Pro Longwear Paint Pots - the nudes / neutrals

Oh how I love MAC Paint Pots.  I think my favourite of all was a (sadly now discontinued) plummy-auberginey-purpley one called Artifact (I never managed to get my mitts on it).  My next love is Constructivist, one of the best (shimmery/almost duochrome) warm shades with great depth, fantastic at creating a beautiful smokey eye all on its own.  But I do love nude/neutral shades of Paint Pots for a really super-crazy-fast eye makeup; great on their own with a slick of eyeliner or as a base under powder eyeshadow to give it a bit more pop.

MAC recently replaced their Paint Pot nomenclature with Pro Longwear Paint Pot, but from my observation and usage, these are basically the exact same formulation and finish, and they both last the same amount of time, and do the same thing, and apply the same way, and have the same ingredients... so as far as I can tell, it's just a re-badge.  With one exception - the Pro Longwear versions, if I were to be picky, seem dryer and creamier both, in comparison to the Paint Pot versions.  Weird, but that's just how it is.

In August of this year, along came a bunch of new shades.  Obsessed 'n all as I am with nude shades, I got three new ones to join my personal matte Paint Pot line up (you can see which are new from the "Pro Longwear Paint Pot" names above).

MAC Nude Paint Pots & Pro Longwear Paint Pots (the mattes)
Top Row, L -> R: Soft Ochre, Painterly, Camel Coat, Tailor Grey
Bottom Row, L -> R: Nubile, Layin' Low, Groundwork, Quite Natural

The nude shades I have, and love, and use, and recommend (assuming you can get 'em), are as follows
  • Soft Ochre - previously LE, now permanent line, this is a fantastic pale yellow-based beige shade, great as a base for really pale C - NC skintones.
  • Painterly - the original nude Paint Pot, Painterly is a very cool toned pale pink-based nude beige, fantastic for really pale N - NW skintones. 
  • Camel Coat - a very slightly darker-than-Painterly muted beige, 
  • Tailor Grey - according to MAC, this is muted grey - it's really a neutral greige-taupe shade, in the same family as the Maybelline Permanent Taupe/Tough as Taupe, but not quite as dark or as cool toned.  If it weren't quite so grey, it would be a perfect flesh-coloured shade for my lids.
  • Nubile (LE, discontinued) - this one actually has a very slight shimmer, but I'm including it here as it's really only a hint and in my opinion, it's not terribly visible.  It's another pinky beige shade but a slightly warmer and slightly darker version of Painterly.  The closest match I have is Benefit RSVP (but Nubile is far less metallic).  This one works really well if you find Painterly is just too pale for you.
  • Layin' Low - Creamy beige, according to MAC, and my latest absolute favourite cream base shade, this has some peach undertones and is very flattering for either NC or NW skintones.
  • Groundwork - Starting to get a little darker now with MAC's mid-tone neutral taupe - this one (as does the last) looks a lot darker in the jar than it does on the lids.  Back a few years ago, Painterly (for very pale pink toned skin) and Groundwork (for slightly darker & more yellow toned skin) were really the only neutral options in the MAC Paint Pot range - thankfully that has now changed.  I used to use this a lot - I guess I have more choices now :-)  Still, it's a perfectly useful go-to shade for medium skin shades/tones as a neutral base.
  • Quite Natural - A dirty chocolate brown, as with Groundwork, this looks a lot darker in the jar than it appears on the lids, I love this one to create (on me, NC23-25) a hint of a slightly darker-than-neutral eye, but this is great as a neutral base shade for darker skin.

The Swatches...

(applied quite heavily)

L -> R: Soft Ochre, Painterly, Camel Coat, Tailor Grey
L -> R: Nubile, Layin' Low, Groundwork, Quite Natural
My favourite?  Layin' Low

MAC Paint Pots / Pro Longwear Paint Pots are cream-based, designed to last and last (they do - I will get about eight hours out of these and I have quite oily lids.  On non-oily lids, I've had these last up to twelve hours without difficulty).  I've even used them on brides - used correctly, there's no reason why you can't.  And they get a huge amount of love from MAC Pro MUAs for red carpet events on celebrity faces.

One of my beautiful brides from '12 - makeup incomplete at this point, but featuring MAC Paint Pot in Constructivist, drying before the next step, as a base.  Image (C) Photos by Jen 2012 (http://www.photosbyjen.ie)

Paint Pots / Pro Longwear Paint Pots dry down to an almost powdery finish.  Unlike a lot of other cream-to-dry-finish products, you have a reasonable amount of time to work with these; they don't start to dry the second you apply them.  To get the best out of these, apply them in thin layers and buff them in as you go - fingers or fluffy brushes work really well with these.  I recommend you get at least one of these.  And try to stop at that :-)

For more of the shades available, look to MAC's site here.


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