MAC Strength Collection Swatches & Review

MAC Strength

MAC Strength is a new and somewhat small limited edition collection out right now.

This collection includes two Eye Shadow quads, three Eye Liners (Penultimate, Kohl & Technakohl), two Powder Blushes, two Nail Lacquers, five Lipsticks, two Lip Pencils and two Brushes (168 and 275).

MAC Inner Strength Eye Shadow Quad
Eye Shadow x 4 Inner Strength

MAC Inner Strength Eye Shadow Quad 2
Eye Shadow x 4 Inner Strength

MAC Inner Strength Eye Shadow Quad Swatches
Eye Shadow x 4 Inner Strength (over primer & clockwise)

Ok let’s start off with the worst first this time. The Inner Strength quad is basically pretty awful. The colors are so sheer and patchy! This was my second time trying to swatch them and get decent coverage, but to no avail. Even over a primer the shades barely show up and they are just extremely lackluster.

Lithe Spirit is a pale white/pink satin. It’s basically completely invisible.

Inner Strength is a light matte mauve shade. This had the best coverage and texture, but you can see it’s really light still.

Heatherbelles is a dark grey satin. Uneven and unimpressive.

Fabulous Fit is a is a medium cool grey matte. Can you even see it? I mean I could NOT get it to come off my finger and onto my hand hardly at all. Awful!

MAC Muscle Tone Triumphant Nail Lacquer
Muscle Tone, Triumphant

MAC Muscle Tone Nail Lacquer
Muscle Tone

Muscle Tone is a pale warm beige/nude creme. This was fairly uneven even after three thin coats.

MAC Triumph Nail Lacquer

Triumphant is a milk chocolate creme and I love, love, love it! Amazing huh? The formula was really quite nice, no streaks, and I only needed two coats for complete coverage. I really love this milk chocolate/taupe-like shade.

MAC Absolute Power Firm Form Lipstick
Absolute Power, Firm Form Lipstick

MAC Embrace Me Lip Pencil
Embrace Me Lip Pencil

MAC Embrace Me Absolute Power Firm Form Swatches
Embrace Me, Absolute Power, Firm Form

Embrace Me is a bright pink shade. I assume this would go really well with the lipstick shade Pink Pigeon from this collection. Nice shade and would work well with a variety of bright pinks I have.

Absolute Power is a bright red matte. Well they call it a matte but it’s not a flat matte, It’s got some shine to it and feels more comfortable on than a traditional flat matte. It looks much darker in the tube than it actually applies. Great red!

Firm Form is a deep black/brown matte with gold pearl. Obviously this isn’t my shade per se, but it’s still really rich and nice looking. Again it’s matte but not flat matte.

MAC Absolute Power Swatch
Absolute Power

MAC Firm Form Swatch
Firm Form

Overall: Well obviously I think you know the Inner Strength Eye Shadow quad was a huge pass. Just not good at all. I did really like Triumphant Nail Lacquer quite a lot though, as well as Embrace Me Lip Pencil and Absolute Power Lipstick.

Availability: Now through the end of January.

Pricing: Eye Shadow x 4 ($40), Nail Lacquer ($16), Lip Pencil ($15), Lipstick ($15).

Anything here tempt you at all?


Note: MAC is not cruelty free.

Disclosure: The product(s) in this post were provided to me by the manufacturer or their PR company for consideration. For more information please visit my legal page.


  • January 8, 2013

    On the first photo everything look so good, but after looking at swatches only Triumphant nail polish is something I really like from this collection. Well, maybe Absolute Power lipstick also :)
    Rabbit´s last post…Violet swirled french tip nailsMy Profile

  • January 8, 2013

    I am easing away from MAC this year, but if I were still into it, I would get Absolute Power.
    Chris´s last post…My Experience with a Yogurt, Honey & Turmeric MaskMy Profile

  • January 8, 2013

    I like the red in the tube more

  • January 8, 2013

    This collection is boring :(

  • January 8, 2013

    I really wish MAC released half as many items, but made them permanent – or at least they were around for a couple months, instead of a couple days (or hours). I’d buy so much more if I had time to read reviews, test things, etc!

  • January 8, 2013

    MAC is slowly becoming less appealing to me. I used to love going to the booth and checking out all they had to offer, even wanted to work for them. But Bleh, they’ve been releasing such crappy stuff, I don’t even bother going to see them at the mall. MAC in general is just a pass for me now.

  • January 8, 2013

    I love the lipsticks but yeah, that quad is pretty awful.
    valerievanity´s last post…Sephora by OPI Good Tidings We Bling Swatches and ReviewMy Profile

  • January 8, 2013

    I was quite excited for this collection but after seeing the swatches, I think I’m actually going to pass.
    Angela @ The Unprofessional Beauty Blog´s last post…Sales and Deals: Store Closing 60% Off of All PurchasesMy Profile

  • January 8, 2013

    Absolute Power looks absolutely amazing in the tube, but so different in the swatch and on your lips. I’m now pretty confused about the colour actually. 😛

    Any MAC reds it compares to?

  • January 8, 2013

    Firm form is quite interesting!

  • January 8, 2013

    omg, i am getting firm form asap!

  • January 8, 2013

    I love the nail polish shades, esp the light one (altho the formula looks awful) and the bright pink lip pencil, which I know I have a NYX dupe for :)
    Catherine (@bcrueltyfree)´s last post…NUDE PEACH Blush ComparisonMy Profile

  • January 12, 2013

    This is why I’m steering away from MAC. It seems like they don’t even test the products anymore. As another poster mentioned, maybe if they didn’t try to crank out a whole new collection every month or more they could focus on quality and release a few WOW collections a year and not 20 MEH collections a year.

  • January 12, 2013

    Yikes! I have a $1 Profusion palette with better pigmentation than those eyeshadows!