Pale Trials: Intro & MAC Studio Fix Liquid in NW 10.

This post has more webcam shots of my mug than anyone’s ever wished for. I have a directory called ‘camho’, and this is where the goodness came from. Oh dear. Old skool, y’all. Show kids & their selfies how shit gets done since 1998.

(Seriously, click on the link, the description is pure gold. Blazing colours and brilliant images, eeeehhheeeee. But if you put it in a perspective, time-wise, the camera was indeed quite brill.)

(I still have it, by the way. I’d wager it still works, should test it w/ XP. Back then they made them to last.)

(Anyway, this is a silly foundation post, not a computer nostalgia post. Sorry, sorry, I get carried away by old tech.)


Choosing a foundation has always been difficult for me. I’m not alone, it’s an unnecessary make-up related complication for anyone on both ends of skin spectrum.

I’m pale. My albedo probably beats that one of the virgin Arctic snow. :P Most of the time I look ashen grey.

ashen grey

This is evening august sun reflecting off my face, whilst the other half of said face is matching my t-shirt colour. This is also my happy face. Quite content indeed.

I’m also cold toned, but due to acne scarring and other such lovely things I have a lot of redness.

no escape

I’m not sure what’s going on with my fringe here, but my cat is certainly trying to escape the calamity.

Once I tried "correcting" the paleness by spending a little too much time in tanning beds, but it didn’t really go well. My skin felt damaged and burnt and tight and crumbly at the same time, and it scarcely developed any colour. Everyone in my family, except my grandmother on mother’s side, tan really easily. My brother spends five minutes in the sun and comes out with a golden glow. My father turns brown, and so did my mother. I thought that maybe I’d get the same effect.


my hardhat is too small lulz

This is me tanned. I’m wearing a hardhat whilst visiting a metal production factory (that orange glowy line in the back is processed metal block rolling away to cool) with a purse that’s hardly appropriate for the occasion. I picked this photo, because it was taken about five days after I finished my vigorous tanning sessions. There’s some glow on my arms, and I remember legs showing a bit of peachy colour as well. My neck is as white as it’s always been, despite the tanning bed being vertical, and my face is maybe a tone darker than usual. Maybe. The glow/ blush is due to heat. Metal factories are hot.

About two weeks later all the colour went away.

All that after hundreds of bucks and hours of time (if you count commute and waiting, I wasn’t that adamant to get the ~*~sun-kissed~*~ look).

Afterwards I decided tanning was a waste of money, time, and health, and fully embraced my paleness. I don’t use self-tanners, including gradual ones. I only use bronzer for slightest cheek and nose contouring in extreme moderation.


The range of pale foundations here is bad. Shops deliberately don’t import the lightest shades, because not even supposed professionals use them. The one that trained me certainly didn’t, the three I’ve worked with didn’t either, and out of all the make-up artists that have ever worked on my cousin’s face (she has a similar predicament) only one used a foundation that was a complete match to her skin tone without throwing a fit about ‘healthier look’ and ‘come with your own product then’.

A bit of colour to your cheeks will suit you.

Just blend it in down the neck, it won’t show any lines.

You have blemishes, a tone or two darker will benefit you, the lightest colours don’t cover blemished skin as well.

But this is the lightest the brand has.

You really aren’t that pale, you know.

These are the things I hear every single time I go to shop for foundation. Matter of taste; lie; relative truth; lie; eyeroll – are my respective responses.


I’ve been meaning to write this series of posts for a while, but stalled myself, because I knew my cousin would be going to Ireland, the magical land where MAC can be purchased. I wanted to start with MAC for comparison, since their shades have become universal foundation terms.

In MAC terms, I’m NW10. I can work with NW15, and even NC15, but the light has to be right, and I can’t always walk around with my face being perfectly lighted.

rosie blondie

rosie blondie two

If you compare face and neck, you’ll see the difference in toning. I have NC15 Studio Fix Powder Plus Foundation on my mug here.

rosie blondie ok light

This is the same, but under different light. Looks almost like a match, unless you obsessively stare at my chin/neck, which I hope you won’t. You creep. :P

brunette contrast

And this is the same against my natural hair colour. Looks OK.

(Where the hell have I put that bottle of brandy in the background…)

Everyone knows what a MAC Studio Fix Liquid Foundation looks like, but allow me to indulge myself. I don’t get to play with MAC stuff often.

Bottle and box:

mac nw 10

mac studio fix liquid nw 10

Fake lashes, Kindles, pencils, chocolate, and cats are in the background. Which is about the extent of my life interests, if you think of it.

Don’t. Let’s go on.


mac arm


mac blended arm

Skipping the face this time around, because a) I’m sure you’ve seen enough of it and b) it’ll be a staple in upcoming make-up posts anyway.

I’m not going to write a detailed review, because there are enough of these already. The rundown:

  • the scent is a little weird. It smells a bit like a new pair of shoes or bike tyres, I dunno. Better than if they’d made it perfumed up the wazoo, plus when I wore it I didn’t really sense it. It’s obvious only during application.
  • the coverage is good
  • the packaging is a little bit evil (I’m used to squeeze tubes and pumps, and damn that porous black matte screw top gets dirty in seconds)
  • so far it didn’t break me out, though I was expecting it to, as a lot of folks write their skin flares up after this
  • the staying power is ok, but ‘ok’ for my face is ‘good/ great’ for others
  • the match is good

This one certainly set my foundation expectations higher. I’m not sure how long the bottle is going to last me, but now every time someone will go out of the country, I’ll be grabbing them by the arm, telling them to bring me a bottle of this. (My brother is the next victim, I think.) Unless, of course, I find a foundation match that retails here.

Nail Polish: Flormar’s Matte Grey.

flormar matte grey

Flormar is my favourite polish brand. This particular one is matte (my favourite effect) and grey (my favourite "colour" after black). It’s pushing all of my polish buttons, but no matter how much I try to love it, I fail.

The formula is OK. It goes on with a bit of streaking.

The brush is the standard Flormar one too. Not OMG impressive, but much better than, say, Oriflame’s. (Soon I’ll write a dissertation about Oriflame’s brushes.)

It is matte. Not the Manglaze matte, but not shiny either.

The colour is nice. Did I mention the colour is nice? Grey grey dark carbonish grey omg bring out the grey.

But the thing chips off in literally hours. Basecoat or no basecoat, one layer or two or three, it chips off. And all my love for matte and grey considered, I just CBA to paint my nails every single day.

I’m not sure if this is the predicament of matte polishes in general, or if it’s just Flormar’s formula. I read OPI mattes were pretty bad too, in terms of chipping, but I haven’t tested any, so I dunno.

This & That Tuesday #9.

0. Finally, a mantra I can get behind.


1. This thing that I love.


2. This ridiculous iPhone cover. (Site will speak Russian to you.)


3. This photograph.


4. This artwork.


5. This landscape.


6. This door.


7. These kitties.


8. This valid concern.


9. This gif of awesome.