This vs. That: MAC vs. NARS Foundation

My family and I are currently living in South Texas.  If you’ve never visited good ole’ South Texas in mid-August, I’ll try to paint you a picture:  I’m pretty sure this is where the devil vacations.  It’s THAT HOT.  So this summer when it came to my make-up, I’ve had some issues (because apparently this naturally curly hair wasn’t troublesome enough…but that’s another story).  Nobody likes to be immediately covered in sweat the second they step outside.  It’s even worse when that sweat is a different color than your skin and looks like melting candlestick wax running down your face.  Talk about a hot mess.  (Pun 100% intended.)

I had been experimenting with primers to use (to read that post, click here), and since I had found one that was working well for me, it was time to move on and find a foundation.  I knew exactly what I was looking for in a foundation, but even after all of the years of wearing make-up I had still never put forth the time or money it would take to try them all.  And honestly, I really don’t think it matters because what I am “looking for exactly” has changed over the years.  I don’t want the same things now that I wanted when I was 25.  (Funny how that happens sometimes in life.)

I had been using the mousse type foundation but it seemed like by the end of the day, the only part of the foundation left on my face was around my hair line.  Yeah.  Soooo….my face was white, but had an orange ring around it.  Not.  Pretty. Since I’ve now decided that I’m going to be all about trying new things, I figured I would be a rebel and switch to liquid foundation.  I took a couple of recommendations from friends, YouTubers, and “people behind the make-up counters” and tried some different brands.  This past Spring, I found my very favorite one:  Studio Fix Fluid by MAC.


I got the recommendation for this foundation from my hairdresser.  Once again, Brenda was right.  There are so many reasons I love it.  It’s great coverage without being too heavy.  It blends well and easily.  It lasts all day (no orange ring).  And a little goes a long way, so your face doesn’t have to be caked with make-up to get the coverage you’re looking for.  I  don’t know about you, but I absolutely cannot take it when my foundation looks like it had to be applied with a putty knife.  I also love this foundation because it’s the one I was using when I learned how awesome it is to apply foundation with a brush! Yeah.  I was super late to the we-can-apply-foundation-with-a-brush party, but a few months ago I finally showed up.  Game.  Changer.  Before then I had always used a sponge.  If you’ve never used a brush before, give it a try.  This is the foundation brush I use…


The bottle is an open mouth glass bottle so you’ll also need a make-up spatula to get it out and apply it.  Another new-to-me tool.  If you’ve never used one these before, it literally looks like a rubber spatula you cook with…only it’s a lot smaller.  You just dip it in your foundation bottle and then apply it to your face.  It makes for easy access and controls the amount you get out.  Also, it can reach the sides and bottom of the bottle when you’re running on empty.  This is the make-up spatula I use…


Ahhh, yes.  Everything was right in the world.  I had just discovered a foundation I loved and learned how to apply it the correct way when this happened…


My darling two-year-old, being her curious little self, pulled the bottle out of my make-up bag and dropped it…right on the bathroom tile…on my freaking birthday!  This was a brand new bottle.  #motherhood

Luckily, I had already finished my make-up that day, so I took off to Ulta to replace my broken bottle.  Only, when I got to my hometown store, they didn’t carry MAC cosmetics.  (Apparently a store location has to be a certain size and do a certain amount of business before they can carry the MAC Cosmetic line.  My hometown location didn’t qualify.)  Still having a few days left to be in the town I was in, and not wanting to go without foundation for that long, I asked the Ulta employee which brand was closest to MAC’s Studio Fix.  She explained that she thought NARS was their closest competitor (I’ve also heard Fenty), and led me over to the NARS section of the store.  I trusted her “expertise” and went home with a new foundation.


I have heard a lot of good things about the NARS Cosmetics line, but when it came to this particular foundation, I wasn’t impressed.  One of the things I wasn’t crazy about was the coverage.  The Ulta girl had told me it was going to be a little bit thicker but holy cow!  It just wasn’t for me.  Especially when I’m living in a place that gets this hot.  At first I thought that maybe I was just applying too much, so I lightened the load and only applied a few drops.  I still didn’t like it. When NARS tells you that their foundation is full coverage, trust them.  They mean it.  I have family members and friends that love this type of coverage but to me, it just felt like too much.  I also don’t think it lasted as long as the MAC Studio Fix and it didn’t blend as easily, either.  It just kinda…smeared.  Don’t get me wrong.  I’m pretty sure this foundation is exactly what it was intended to be.  A straight-up full coverage foundation.  That just wasn’t what I was looking for.  I wanted full coverage, without the full coverage weight.  And that’s what I get out of the MAC Studio Fix.

I’m still new to this whole experimenting-with-make-up thing, so I am always open to suggestions, tips, and opinions.  If you have any beauty products you think I should try or any questions about the products I have already tried, please reach out!  I love learning new things and experimenting with new products has been so much fun!  And if you liked this post, don’t forget to subscribe and follow me on IG and Pinterest.

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