MAC foundation samples

I got 3 MAC foundations samples when I went in the last time to redeem my “free” lipstick for the Back to MAC program.  I’ve now had the chance to try all 3 foundations at least twice each, so I can provide a first impressions type of review on them.
The foundations I got were: Prep + Prime BB Beauty Balm SPF35, Matchmaster SPF15 Foundation, and Mineralize Moisture. Firstly, what I typically like in my everyday foundations:
• lightweight – skin-like finish
• easy application – I typcially use my fingers
• long wearing – at least 8 hrs to last me through a work day
• good colour match
I have combo skin with an oilier t-zone, sensitive skin that can get dehydrated.  Foundation is a product that I like to try a sample first before taking the plunge with a full size – I like to check the colour match in a variety of lighting, and also make sure they don’t cause break outs.
I’ve been curious to try the Mineral Moisture foundation since its launch and the other 2 samples were chosen for me by the MA who recommended them based on my preferences and skin type. Here are my thoughts on each after trialing them.

Prep + Prime BB Beauty Balm SPF35 in Medium – CAD $37 for 40ml
This claims to keep hydration on the skin, yet controls oil, with the added benefit of sunscreen protection.  The shade Medium is slightly too dark for my skintone – I think Light Plus would have been a better match.  This BB cream does smell like sunscreen (it uses both chemical and physical sunscreens: Octinoxate (7.5%) Octisalate (4%) Oxybenzone (2.5%) Titanium Dioxide (1.1%)) and has the highest SPF rating of the 3 samples.  I found the coverage to be quite good and the formula applied smoothly onto the skin.  The oil control is one of the best from a BB cream that I’ve tried – I didn’t even need to powder my skin.  However, this foundation did seem to sit on top of my skin, making it look a bit mask-like.  I think this formula is best suited for oily skin types.  7/10
Matchmaster SPF15 Foundation in 1.5 – CAD $43 for 35ml
I own the corresponding concealer to this and the claims for the foundation are similar: shade adjusting colour (how?) with a medium coverage, plus sunscreen. I really like this foundation – the application with my fingers was smooth and blendable.  The coverage was light to medium, but buildable.  It provided a natural satin finish but got slightly dewy looking as the day wore on.  It did rub off a little around my nose and chin which is normally where I get the most wear and tear on my face from eating and whatnot.  There was no noticeable sunscreen smell to this – it contains chemical and mineral sunscreen: Octinoxate (3.4%) and Titanium Dioxide (1.0%). The colour match was good and it didn’t oxidize on me – in the pot the shade looks deep but it applies lighter on the skin; I suppose it did self adjust to my skin tone?  I would recommend this foundation for normal to combination skin – it did not accentuate dry spots nor turn into a grease pit.  I would consider purchasing this in the full size!  9/10
Mineralize Moisture SPF15 Foundation in NC20 – $43 for 30ml
This is a gel cream mineral foundation with a natural satin finish that claims to blur imperfections and keep skin fresh looking, with sunscreen. I really liked the sound of this one and that’s why I specifically requested it.  Colour-wise, it’s the lightest of the bunch but works fine on my skin tone.  It has a runnier texture compared to the other 2, and feels very lightweight and spreads easily over the skin using just my fingers. The finish is on the lighter end of medium and quite dewy – I like to set it with the MAC Studio Sculpt Defining Powder.  Like the other 2, the sunscreen contained in this is a mix of chemical and mineral: Octinoxate 7.5%, Titanium Dioxide 2% . I don’t find the formula able to be built up to a heavier coverage since it’s so emollient it just rubs off the previous layer.  This foundation is definitely not for oilier skin types – it’s not a long lasting formula and does tend to get shiny within a couple of hours. I do like it for cooler months as it makes my skin look very healthy.   8/10

Here are all 3 compared to each other:
Interesting to note that all of the foundations I got to sample contain SPF. It’s not usually a deciding factor for me when choosing foundation since I wear a separate SPF, but it’s a nice inclusion. However, I personally would prefer SPF of at least 30 for my face which was only available in the BB cream.  So while none of these are busts (no break outs!), I preferred the Matchmaster the best for my skin type (which I keep calling Matchmaker and then start singing that song from Fiddler on the Roof – anyone else?)

Have you tried any of these MAC foundations?  What’s your current favourite foundation?

38 thoughts on “MAC foundation samples

  1. The MatchMaster is good huh… I went looking for a foundation with a friend and the beauty assistant matched her to the MatchMaster. It looked like it was a tad darker at first on her skin but it oxidised into an orange-y shade on her and I was convinced that that was a crappy foundation. After reading your thoughts on it, I am now convinced that the beauty assistant needs re-training…

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    1. It’s entirely possible! I once had a MUA “match” me as NC42 LMAO. I was shocked. I’ve always hovered around NC20-30-ish even with a tan. I highly recommend getting samples of foundation – you can get a couple of shades and check out the colour match in a variety of lighting conditions. MAC is very good about giving samples!

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  2. Such a great and interesting post! For the moment I’ve MAC’s pro longwear sdf10 foundation in shade NC25. I like it a lot even though it’s not my favorite foundation. I’ve mixed oily skin, specially the T-zone, which needs really really longlasting foundatios but first of all a great primer underneath…;-) I’ve actually changed foundation last week to Yves Saint Laurent’s foundation Le Teint Encre De Peau in color B40 and I love it. It’s made for mixed skin with the tendency to get oily. The great thing about it is that it’s so light weighted yet gives you a great coverage. And of course keeps the skin matte longer than other foundations I’ve tried. If you’ve the chance to get a tester of this one I recommend you to give it a try. That’s my favorite for the moment. 🙂 Have a great day dear!

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    1. Thank you for your comment! I love hearing about other people’s favourite foundations since we all have different preferences! I have the MAC Pro Longwear concealer but I’ve not tried the corresponding foundation – I find the concealer a bit tricky to work with to blend into my skin. I do like the sound of that YSL foundation – I should go try it at the counters – thanks for the recommendation! 😀 Have a great day too!

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    1. I have the Face & Body and I really like it for no-makeup makeup days. It can be built up if you add another layer. I haven’t tried Pro Longwear but I don’t think I want something so heavy. I hope you get a chance to try these to see if one of them would work for you!

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  3. I love the match master and studio fix fluid. The match master is more sheer and matte for me while the studio fix is full coverage and has a satin finish. I LOVE both but always depends on where I’m going that day 🙂

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          1. I’m saving money today since Sephora’s BF deals (the one I wanted) are all sold out !!! It’s better this way $$$$. I’m so ready for my low-buy, it will be refreshing to use up my stash !!!


  4. I’ve been looking at the Mineralize Moisture for a while now and I’m really intrigued. My holy grail MAC foundation back in the day was the Mineralize Satinfinish and I was so disappointed when they discontinued it, you wouldn’t happen to know how they compare would you?

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  5. I didn’t know that they give samples. Hm, good to know for the next time. I chucked my mineral moisture foundation after 4 uses. I was shining like hell on my t-zone in ALL photos. The colour slips after 3 hours on me. It just didn’t work out. *I have combination skin.

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