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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Review & Swatches: Mac Surf, Baby! My Paradise Cheek Powder Blush

I didn't purchase anything from Mac's Summer collection when Surf, Baby! was released online on the 23rd because I was still waiting for my Macy's gift cards to come in the mail. The collection officially came out in stores on the 26th, but my gift cards still haven't arrived. I was getting really impatient because the Cheek Powder was sold out everywhere online already. Then, on the 27th, I called my nearest Macy's Mac counter and a MUA told me there were only 3 Cheek Powders left. So, I couldn't wait any longer. I went straight to the counter that same day and bought the blush with my credit card. It would have been nice to use the gift cards, but to this day, they still haven't arrived. It sucks that Mac's limited edition products sell out so fast. It's a huge marketing gimmick and I keep falling for it.

When I swatched this at the counter, I had second thoughts about whether or not I should bring it home with me. The Cheek Powder leans more towards the coral side with a hint of a reddish undertone when swatched without the gold overlay. However, it looks lighter and has a slight orange undertone when swatched with the gold overlay. I am not a fan of bright orange blushes, but I was more thrown off by the hibiscus overlay because it's a thick crust of gold glitter. I was hesistant on purchasing this cheek powder because the gold overlay looked too overpowering and extremely glittery. It's not an overspray that will disappear after 1 or 2 uses like Mac's Marine Life. The overlay in My Paradise will last a while.

 With Flash

I bought it anyways because the hibiscus design is simply too pretty to resist. However, I'm not too thrilled about the exterior packaging because it looks kind of retro, like it was made in the '70s. It's not really my style, but I've seen much worst packaging from Mac, such as Neo Sci-Fi with it's plain orange packaging. 
Direct Sunlight

I also bought it in a hurry because I was afraid it was going to be sold out and I also wanted to see if it would look different when applied to the face. It actually does and translates into a peachy coral shade without a hint of orange. Yay!! For reference, I'm a Mac NC30/35, Dior Forever 021 mixed with 031, MUFE HD 127 and L'oreal True Match W4.  

It looks semi-matte indoors, but shimmery under direct sunlight. I can barely see any shimmers on my cheeks when I'm under artificial lighting; however, when I'm out in the sun, I can see tiny specks of shimmers. Beware, the shimmers are extremely noticeable when the sun directly hits your face. If you read my previous posts, then you know that I absolutely hate shimmery blushes and bronzers; however, I'm keeping My Paradise because the color itself just looks so flattering on my skintone. I can get past the glittery mess by avoiding direct contact with sunlight and just reserve this cheek powder for night time use.

Indoors near Window

The biggest problem I have with this blush is applying it. I chose to apply it with my Mac 131 first because this is the only brush that I could use to avoid touching the gold overlay. I was really surprised that it ended up looking blotchy because the white synthetic fibers are suppose to lightly pick up powder products and disperse evenly, but it didn't.

Then, I tried applying it with my Mac 109 (review), Mac 168 (review), and Royal & Langnickel Baby Dome brush (review) by dipping the brush in the pan lightly and tapping off any excess, but it still ended up looking patchy. (I didn't swirl any of the brushes in the pan.) Also, please keep in mind that My Paradise is one of the most highly pigmented products that I have come across. I also tried buffing out the blotchiness with my Sephora #43 brush (review), but that was a failure because it wouldn't blend out evenly. The only brush that I have that works with My Paradise is my Sonia Kashuk Blusher brush (review), which is the fluffiest among all my face brushes. I really thought that my Mac 168 brush would work because it's not a super dense brush, but I guess you need a super fluffy brush instead in order to apply My Paradise flawlessly.  

Indoors with Shade

It costs $28 for 12 grams and is currently sold out everywhere online, but you can still find it at the Mac counters in various department stores, if you're lucky.

What brush do you use to apply My Paradise?

*This post contains affiliate links. None of the products mentioned are sponsored.


  1. Hi :) I've just come across your blog and I really like it!
    I hate how MAC does that too. The worst is the MSFs. They're lovely but jeez! They aren't worth what you see them going for on eBay, they're just shimmery powders...

  2. Hi Usagi-bun!

    Thanx for stopping by my blog. =)

    By the way, MAC is releasing some new MSFs in their Semi-Precious Collection that's coming out in July. I know there will be a total frenzy over that! Be prepared for the circus when the collection comes out. LOL


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