MAC recently released some formerly PRO-exclusive shades into the wild (i.e. into the wide open, gimme-gimme hands of the general public). Smoked Purple (Matte) is one of those shades. I picked it up one day without actually planning to, as I really thought that Peachstock would steal my heart. Peachstock was lovely (and good thing I can now go back and get it whenever I want to), but Smoked Purple looked more appropriate for the “moment” we’re having in beauty right now.
So I picked it up (for 1,000 Php btw) and realised after a while that this is the only matte MAC lipstick I own. I understand that the newer mattes from MAC have been reformulated, but this particular shade is not one of them. Consequentially, it’s a bit drier and a little more difficult to work with than the new formula (I know because I eventually picked up one of those… you’ll see which soon). Still, this is a damn good lipstick. Just warning you that if you’ve never worked with a MAC matte before, it will take a bit of getting used to and figuring out what application strategy works best for you. This is a photo from my instagram page. I was actually showing my hair cut but it was also the very first day I tried wearing Smoked Plum. Man, was it a struggle. I applied so much lip balm (in fear that my lips would be too dry for a matte lip) that the product was sliding everywhere! It’s not too obvious in the photo (thank you, filters) but it was a hot mess. I eventually realised that the formula needs to be able to grip onto the skin, and to do that the lips can’t be too slippery. So, moisturise and exfoliate well in advance instead of slathering on some lip balm. That’s the best advice I can give you right now.
Swatched: one swipe on the left and several on the right. You can see how it really is a little “skippy” as a formula, but it builds up nicely in the end. My absolute favourite thing about Smoked Plum is that it’s a greyish purple and not a warm, red-based purple/violet (kinda like Rebel). By now you’ve heard me talk about my lips and their insistence on pulling out red tones like a broken record, but it really is something I constantly have to consider when choosing lipsticks. The smokey quality of this shade coupled with the fact that there is very little red in the base makes it possible for me to achieve that blackened/bruised cherry look, which is surprisingly very flattering. Worn full-on a few days after my haircut, when I had finally unlocked the secret to better application. Now that doesn’t mean I don’t have issues with the formula–mattes are really quite drying and after a couple of hours I have to carefully add some lip balm over top while trying not to disturb the lipstick. It’s worth the little extra effort, though. But then I might just be taken by the shade! I also took a page out of Rae’s (Scatterbraintures) book and wore my matte lipstick blotted and then patted in with my fingers. I’m not sure if you can really see it here, but that’s definitely not my natural lip colour (my bare lips often blend into the rest of my face). I wish it were my natural colour though! It reminds me of grape juice. Mmm.
Just have to say: I looked pissed off in the last photo because I really was having a terrible morning…you can see it in my eyes, lol. But you might have also noticed that my lips have been shut tight in my more recent selfies (let’s just call them what they are!) and I wanted to share with you guys that it’s because one of my front teeth has a big-ass chip in it. LOL. It’s also easier for you all to see more of my lips when I don’t smile with my teeth showing, but really it’s mainly because of my chipped tooth. My dentist has been abroad and only gets back next week, so hopefully things will be fixed quickly and I can finally smile properly again.
Anyway! How do you guys feel about shades like Smoked Purple? Oh and any thoughts on MAC’s new matte vs. old matte formulas? Would love to hear them!