Pammy Blogs Beauty: MAC Matters (November 2012): Building a Core MAC Collection with $21 a Month!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

MAC Matters (November 2012): Building a Core MAC Collection with $21 a Month!

There is nothing like the feeling of knowing that your money is well spent! Welcome to MAC Matters: Building a Core MAC Collection with $21.00 per month!

My Epiphany:
The idea for this series came to me when I was reviewing a recent GLOSSYBOX. Why pay $21.00 per month for a sample subscription when I can buy a MAC item every month for less than that and like it better? When I looked at what I spent on GLOSSYBOX over time, I realized that I wasn't getting a lot of products that I truly loved. Sure, the experience is super fun and I got introduced to a lot of new brands...but, I didn't end up with a lot of products that I am totally in love with. Don't get me wrong though. I loved GLOSSYBOX for what it was. It was fun! However, I am on a budget and I just want to be a bit smarter with my makeup spending.

So, I cancelled GLOSSYBOX and this MAC Matters Challenge was born. Now, I am a still a bit of a beauty sample box lover. So, I decided to keep my very affordable Birchbox subscription ($10 per month) and my Julep Maven nail themed beauty box subscription ($20.00 per month, which is higher, but I honestly use every single item that I get in my Julep boxes. So, I feel that the money is not going to waste).

Why MAC?
MAC is a makeup line after my own heart. The quality and selection is fabulous. The packaging is sleep. The selection is amazing. They literally have just about everything that you could want or need. Therefore, they are a great brand for this challenge. You can certainly build a fabulous core collection of makeup staples from this line. Plus, the price is right! The prices are totally mid range. They are not drugstore cheap nor or they priced ridiculously high. If I am spending an average of $21.00 per month, I should be able to build up a nice little collection in a years time!

Join Me!!!
If you are reading this and get inspired, I would love for you to join me in this challenge! Upon reading my MAC Matters Intro Post last week, my fellow Beauty Blog Coalition and Metro Atlanta Beauty Bloggers member Quinn from Mama Fashionista decided that she wanted to join in too! So, be sure to head on over to her fabulous blog as well to follow her version of this series too! :) Even though this blog series has only just begun, Quinn and I are having the best time planning and discussing our purchases and blog posts! Here is a link to Quinn's post: Mama Fashionista MAC Matters November 2012.
We need goals for this challenge, right? Here they are!
Goal: Build my core MAC Collection using an average of $21.00 per month.
  • Purchase at least one item a month: If the item is under $20, I can save the remainder for the next month. While there are many items priced under $20, there are plenty that are over the $20 range that I can save for. 
  • Do a monthly blog post to share what I got! My goal is to continue this series for 12 months to see what kind of core collection I can build! 
  • To coordinate with my "Build a Core MAC Collection" purchases, I will also be posting "MAC Matters: From the Stash" reviews! These "stash" items are MAC items that I love that are already in my makeup collection. Some months, I will be "saving" my $21 to go towards a bigger MAC purchase. This is when you will likely see the "stash" posts. Or, I might include a "stash" item mini review within my "Build a Core MAC Collection" posts because if you are reading this because you want to build your own MAC collection, you might enjoy reading about what I am already using and loving! 
  • If this series is popular, I will repeat the series with another brand upon completion of 12 months with MAC.
So, are you curious? Do you want to know what I got for my November MAC Matters Challenge? Keep reading to find out!
It is always good to have a "plan B"! 

I had full intentions of purchasing an empty palette today. However, it just seems more fun to kick off a blog series with actual makeup items! MAC's large empty palette retails for just under $20 and the insert/separator for just under $10. So, if I decide to go for a palette later in the challenge, I am going to have to wait until I have some "leftover" money or I possibly might just get a smaller 4 pan palette. My ultimate goal is to depot all of my current MAC singles and insert them into palettes. Then future MAC shadow purchases can be in pan form (which are less expensive anyway). Have you depotted your shadows? Any tips? Last time I depotted I ended up breaking a few shadows (and I hate that!).

My $21.00 MAC Matters Purchase:
Using my MAC Matters Challenge Cash, I purchased one MAC lipstick. I decided upon the shade Syrup. Ya'll this lipstick has literally been on my MAC wishlist for *ages*! It gets such rave reviews and I am just thrilled with it already. It is just such a classic and wearable shade. This is exactly the type of lip color that I like to wear on an everyday basis. Beautiful and natural. I highly recommend Syrup to anyone building a MAC collection of great basics!

So, this might be a little bit of a "cheat" but I am going to include these items in this post anyways as they did not bring my total over $21.00. However, I am not going to count these items towards my MAC Matters challenge. As I mentioned in my MAC Matters Intro Post, I might include write ups in this series for Back-to-MAC items as well as MAC Matters: From the Stash items along with my challenge purchases. Yes, this series is not only about the $21.00 monthly challenge but also about sharing great MAC products with you guys!

Back-to-MAC is MAC's makeup packaging recycling program. Basically, you can bring in any 6 MAC empties and trade them in for one new product: lipstick, lipgloss, or eye shadow single (I was shopping at a MAC store which allows you a wider variety of items for Back-to-Mac).

In an effort to clean out my makeup stash (including tossing old items and empties), I traded in 12 items for Back-to-MAC! Yay!!!! So, that means that I got two free items! I am just thrilled about this.
So, I got two eyeshadows Naked Lunch and Shale. Shale is a very interesting color. It is like a less shimmery and more purple version of my favorite MAC eyeshadow Satin Taupe. Shale is a complex combination of lavender, silver, and taupe. I love this shade as a crease color. Naked Lunch has been on my MAC eyeshadow wishlist for ages! So, I am thrilled to finally add it to my collection. Naked Lunch is such a great basic! On me, its effect is extremely subtle. It is a slightly shimmery satin champagne color with hints of peachy pink. Naked Lunch looks very natural on the lid and the finish has a brightening effect.
The Run Down: The MAC Matters Challenge
I am literally keeping a cash envelope in a MAC bag at home for the duration of this challenge (one year). Any remainder cash will go back into the envelope for future MAC purchases. I really want to see what and average $21.00 per month can get me with a year's time. What kind of collection can I build?
*Naked Lunch $0 (Back to MAC)
*Shale $0 (Back to MAC)
Syrup $15.00
tax $1.05
Total Spent: $16.05
**Remainder: $4.95

*Not counted as part of MAC Matters Challenge (included in post as it was part of this "haul")
*The $4.95 will be added to my $21.00 for next month. I can either purchase a larger item next month or carry the remainder over again for an even bigger MAC purchase. 

How do I feel?
Pleased as punch! For $16.05 I got a beautiful lipstick accompanied by some free Back to MAC items. MAC's Syrup truly is a great basic "my lips but better" lipstick. Just gorgeous! Even without the addition of the Back-to-MAC free shadows, I am still totally thrilled with how I spent my $21.00 Challenge allowance!

MAC Recommendations:
Are you a MAC lover already? I would love to hear your product recommendations! I am keeping a running list on my phone. I am trying to do my research to pick out some really great MAC products! So, feel free to comment here, send me a message, FB me, or tweet me about your favorite MAC products. :)

I hope you all are enjoying this blog series as much as I am! I know that Quinn (Mama Fashionista) and I are having a total blast with it. Don't forget to check out Quinn's post here: Quinn's MAC Matters November Challenge.

Inspired to build your MAC Collection? Feel free to join us in the MAC Matters Challenge! 

Thanks for reading!


Unknown said...

I love it! Fabulous idea! Ni just cancelled Glossybox too for the same reason. I still have Glymm (I'm in Canada) but think I'll be cancelling. And I just got on Topbox after a long waitlist, so we'll see. I cancelled Julep as well. Oh, and I get Loosebutton, but it'snquarterly.

I adore Mac, especially shadows and brushes. I love Pink Swoon blush and I've used so many pots of Gleam I lost count. I also love all that Glitters.

Can't wait to join the fun! Off to get that lippy!!


haaikuu said...

This is an awesome idea! Subscription boxes look cool, but there doesn't seem to be a box that has just makeup- it seems like they all include weird skincare, fragrance, or just plain weird stuff. Like granola bars? What? Anyway, I think this is a much better use of money, and I think it's a great idea to do this again with another brand next year (or maybe just at Sephora? That would be kinda fun.)! Great idea & great job :)

Can't wait to see what next month brings!

Mama Fashionista said...

I think that I might be getting a lippy next month! We shall see. You hit this month's post out of the park; it's definitely motivation for me to do a bit more planning for next month! I've heard a lot about Syrup this fall; I'll have to check it out next time I'm at the MAC counter! Can't wait for next month!

Unknown said...

@Sarah-You should for sure join us! Agreed, Pink Swoon is amazing! One of my all time faves for sure! :) Wish the US got Loose Button! I have heard that box is great.

@Stephanie-Thanks! What a great idea to do the challenge next year with Sephora. LOVE the idea and might use it! We are also tossing around the idea of doing the challenge next with a drugstore line like NYX and decreasing the monthly dollar amount.

@Mama Fashionista-Syrup is great and I can already tell it is going to be a favorite. It is very sheer and easy to wear. Your post was awesome too! I love how you did your photos. Very artsy and pretty! :) Sooooo glad you are doing this challenge with me! xo

Teri said...

This is smart. I am not a fan of the beauty sample box subscriptions because I also think it is better to spend your hard earned money on one thing you really want. Using it on MAC is a fabulous idea and is a great way to build a collection.

Cynthia.Richardson said...

What an inspired topic. I can't wait to read your posts. And I've got Syrup on my shopping list.

Unknown said...

ooooh this looks like so much fun! I have a beauty blog too: would you guys mind if I join you? I love this idea! (though i'm not gonna cancel my glossybox for it, just probably do it in addition =P).

Fleur said...

This is such a good idea. I'm only subscribed to glossybox at the mo and quite like it. There is pretty much always one product I want to repurchase in ever box, or more! So I'll probably be sticking with that. However, if and when I get bored of it. I shall definitely be trying this! Xo

Unknown said...

Thanks Teri, Cynthia, and Fleur! Rachel-feel free to join in! I think I will just open up the comments each month and anyone can join in and leave their blog address in the comments. :) I will publish my next MAC Matters post right around the 21st of next month. Glad you want to join in! :)

Unknown said...

Thanks Teri, Cynthia, and Fleur! Rachel-feel free to join in! I think I will just open up the comments each month and anyone can join in and leave their blog address in the comments. :) I will publish my next MAC Matters post right around the 21st of next month. Glad you want to join in! :)

Bridget said...

Oh I want to do this too! I could never justify a beauty box subscription, 'cause I either didn't like or didn't want some of the items. But I love MAC and this sounds like fun. Thanks for getting this going, I already know what I'll get this week to start. :-)

kavilla87 said...

I love this idea! Just did this with my skincare routine, the best thing is that by buying one item a month you are less likely to run out of more than one at a time.

Unknown said...

@Bridget-Cant wait to see what you decided to get for the challenge! :)

@kavilla87-Great idea to do this with skincare. True, you certainly would not run out of everything at the same time. :)

Sabs said...

I absolutely LOVED this post! I think this is a great idea for people on a budget and also for people who want to try a new brand. I definitely want to try this but I have to pick a brand!

Unknown said...

@sabrina-Thank you! :) Check back in to let me know what brand you picked!

Unknown said...

I think this is an EXCELLENT idea! I've always wanted to try MAC but I'm always overwhelmed by all of their products. I think its great to take 21$ a month and put it towards a high end product. Do you think a lipstick is a good intro MAC product?

Unknown said...

@Virginia Caviola-Thank you! :) I am having so much fun with this challenge! :) Yes, absolutely, I think that a MAC lipstick is the perfect place to start! Their lipsticks are fabulous and the color selection is really amazing. An eyeshadow would be another good starting place with MAC. Have fun shopping!

Anonymous said...

This is such a Great idea! I am looking forward to all the posts. I have your items on my list. Does Mac have any blushes that have any lilac/mauve tones to them? I have been looking for cool blushes and they are hard to find at my macy's counter :)

Unknown said...

@Anonymous-Be sure to check out my December 2012 MAC Matters post! I also love wearing cool toned blushes and for Dec I picked MAC's Well Dressed blush which is a lovely cool toned blush. Also, sinced you asked about lilac tones, I have a straight-up lilac blush from a limited edition MAC collection a few years back called Sakura. While it is not available now, you might be able to find it on ebay. It is a lilac blush with a pink heart in the center.

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