Ahh, this blush. THIS BLUSH. I love it, and I hate it. Well, I mainly hate the fact that I didn’t buy a back-up of it. It’s not the blush’s fault. But the love I have for it… yes, I want to marry it.
It was part of MAC Give Me Liberty of London collection from 2010. MAC’s official shade description is “neutral nude” which really downplays how nuanced the colour is.
It’s a shimmering bronze nudey shade, yet it’s got a plummy-ness to it as well. It registers as both warm and cool tone on the skin, depending on the rest of my makeup look.
At first I wasn’t as enamoured with this shade as I am now. It was a love that developed over time. When I realized how much I loved this blush, it was too late, because of course it was a limited edition shade.
And not having a back-up of it caused me anxiety every time I used it. In my mind, I would be hitting pan any day and my life would be OVER. But I exaggerate. I will never hit pan on this, it doesn’t even show a dip in the pan 5 years later! In 2012, I started to scour blog sales (damn those “U.S. only” sales!) and eBay for a back-up, but to no avail.
So the next best thing was to find a dupe for it. First I looked in my stash at the time. I didn’t own nearly as many blushes about 3 years ago, so here are some comparisons from what I owned at the time:
• Sally Hansen Natural Beauty Inspired by Carmindy Natural Powder Blush in #1011-20 Fawn (too dark)
• Milani Powder Blush in Temptation (too mauve)
• NYX Powder Blush in Dusty Rose (too pink)
No dupes. So I searched for information online – maybe someone posted a dupe for this colour. Googling “MAC Prim & Proper dupe” returned no viable leads. So I went shopping.
My friends can vouch for me when I say that I went on a hunt for a dupe of this. I brought the compact into the stores carefully wrapped in tissue – can you even imagine if it shattered while in transport? The first place I went to was MAC – nope, nothing. I went to the department store counters one by one. I went to Sephora. It was quite an interesting exercise. Usually the SAs are very helpful and amused by my task at hand. I had to fend some of them off from trying to swatch the blush with their fingers – oh my! Don’t touch my makeup, people!
The trick with blushes is that they often apply quite differently compared to how they appear in the pan. So while something might look similar comparing the pans side by side, once actually swatched, they’re vastly different. In the end, I managed to find not one, but TWO passable dupes!
• Clinique Fresh Bloom allover colour in #13 Plum Poppy Blend – this is ever so slightly more pink, but when applied on the cheeks, it’s a very similar colour
• Sephora Colorful Blush in #12 Raspberry Sheen – this applies so differently than how it appears in the pan, I almost didn’t swatch it. Compared to Prim & Proper, it’s a bit brighter and more peach, and has a noticeable silver shimmer, but again, once applied to the cheeks, it’s quite similar
In my opinion, the Clinique is the closest match. As luck would have it, neither the Clinique or Sephora are available any longer! BUT they are available on Amazon. So if you’re in the market for a gorgeous bronze nudey plummy blush, they’re available here and here.
While preparing for this post, I also discovered 2 more similar shades in my stash, which I bought without even realizing how similar they were to Prim & Proper:
• MAC Pro Longwear in Blush All Day – slightly more mauve
• Estee Lauder Pure Color Blush in #11 Sensuous Rose – a little more apricot and brighter
Both of these are still readily available!
So there you have it. My journey into finding a comparable dupe for one of my favourite, if not the favourite blush in my stash. 🙂 (Yes, I realize that I now own 5 blushes that are all really similar, but you say that like it’s a bad thing.) Have you ever done something so obsessive regarding makeup?