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If you are looking to save a bit of money on your MAC makeup addiction, you might be tempted to take advantage of some of the deals you can find online. While it is possible to find some good bargains on MAC on places like eBay, counterfeit MAC is becoming increasingly more common. Here are a few tips on how to identify counterfeit MAC Cosmetics and avoid buying fake MAC items.
First, trust your instincts. If a price sounds good to be true, you should look at the item with a very skeptical eye. It’s extremely difficult to find true bargains on MAC Cosmetics products these days. If it’s just a few dollars off of retail, it is more likely to be legitimate. If it’s a limited edition pigment from 1999 being sold for $2 new in box, you can rule it out right away.
photo credit: iferneinez
In order to determine the validity of the item in question, you need to examine it closely. If buying online, you should request pictures from the seller of the item from several angles including the top, bottom, side view, inside of lid, and the box. You need to compare these with original items either from your own collection or using pictures found online. There are a lot of subtle differences that fake MAC makeup products carry.
The packaging is one area where fakes tend to stand out if you know what to look for. For example, many counterfeit MAC eyeshadows come in a pot that looks suspiciously like the real thing… until you notice the compartment with the mirror and applicator underneath. MAC pot shadows never come with applicators or mirrors yet somehow this is very common on fakes. Also, the lid on many fake MAC shadows has a higher dome and opens at a smaller angle than real MAC shadows.
The packaging can offer several clues as well. Often counterfeit MAC boxes will have a very convincing MAC logo but the font on the rest of the box is very different from that of legitimate MAC boxes. Because many of these fakes are manufactured in other countries, you can often spot misspellings on the packaging as well. In some cases, the dimensions of the boxes might be different than real boxes too. If you suspect an item is not real MAC, pore over it very carefully before committing to buy it. Compare the item in question with one that you know is real and scrutinize the size, shape, writing, color and finish of the lid, weight, and scent.
Another tip-off to potentially fake MAC items is the source. Legitimate MAC products can be purchased from MAC counters, MAC stores, MAC’s official website, and Cosmetics Company Outlet stores. Sometimes individuals will sell their MAC items secondhand for extra cash online. eBay is a overrun with MAC items but the sad truth is that many of these are counterfeit. When shopping for MAC on eBay, look at the seller’s history. Check their feedback carefully for complaints of counterfeits. Look at the other items they are selling. If they have hundreds of new MAC items up for sale, especially without boxes, there is a good chance what they are selling isn’t MAC at all.
Unfortunately, you have to do a bit of detective work when you are buying MAC from unofficial sources. Counterfeit MAC makeup items are not just poor quality imitations of the real thing. Some of these items might even contain ingredients that can irritate your skin or eyes. Truly good deals on MAC are few and far between but if you look very carefully, you can still find a few bargains.
You already know that you need to use a brush to properly apply makeup but not just any brush will do. If you have ever tried to use those sad little brushes that come inside of eye shadow or brush compacts, then you know that some brushes are better than others. Buying a cosmetics brush is not just a matter of running to the drugstore and grabbing a brush that looks like it is the right size. You need to put a bit of thought into your selection or you can end up wasting a lot of money. Here are some helpful tips for choosing cosmetics brushes.
• You should always buy the best quality makeup brushes you can afford. Yes, they can be pricey but this is one case where you really do get what you pay for. Good makeup brushes are an investment. Bad brushes need to be replaced more often and can irritate your skin.
photo credit: Fufi
• Natural bristles are generally better than synthetic ones. They also cost a lot more. Natural bristles are a must for large areas of the face but if you need to save some money, you can get away with synthetic fibers for any brushes that will be used with liquids.
• Pay attention to the material of the handle. Plastic is very easy to clean, which is important when you are working with liquids. Wooden handles, on the other hand, are more elegant and traditional but it can be very difficult to get stains out and these require extra drying time after washing. It’s really a matter of personal preference.
• Consider the density of the bristles in relation to the intended purpose of the brush. Stiff, tightly-packed bristles are a must for an eyebrow shading brush but softer bristles work better for applying loose powder all over the face.
• Look at handle length. Longer handles are easier to work with whereas shorter handles travel better.
• Concealer brushes can be synthetic if you are using them for liquid or cream concealer. Look for a small brush with a tapered round tip for covering blemishes and a flat, tapered square head for covering dark circles under the eyes.
• A good blush brush will be significantly larger than those that are usually included in the packaging of most blushes, yet not quite as big as a powder brush. Look for soft, natural bristles with a tapered head.
• If you are new to brushes, you might want to purchase a brush set from a reputable brand. Brands like MAC and Shu Uemura are considered some of the best. If your budget is smaller, you might want to try Sonia Kashuk or Essence of Beauty. Brush sets take some of the guesswork out of brush selection and are a great way to get a collection of useful brushes together. This often works out to be cheaper than buying them individually as well.