News, Culture & Society

FEMAIL road tests three major makeup counters to see which is worth your time and money 

Booking an appointment to have your makeup done at a beauty counter can be overwhelming, especially if you’ve never done it before.

With so many different makeup brands offering the service it can be hard to know which will do the best job.

On top of this it can be tricky figuring out which would best suit the event you’re going to.

With this in mind I set out to test three big name makeup brands in Australia, MAC, Benefit and Bobbi Brown, to put them to the test.

To make it as fair as possible I went to each counter for an hour and simply told them to do my makeup as if I was going to an event such as a wedding or an important birthday – all of the big decisions were made by the makeup artists. 

Here are the results. 

I set out to test three big name makeup brands in Australia, MAC, Benefit and Bobbi Brown, to put them to the test

MAC: ONE HOUR = $120 REDEEMABLE ON PRODUCTS 

Heading into MAC I knew that the brand is known for their bright colours and their bold, artistic looks. 

As I had dehydrated skin on the day my makeup artist, Jody, said she made sure to use a variety of products that would hydrate it as she emphasised that you always need a nourished base before applying makeup.

The look she ended up creating focused on a very dramatic eye, which she emphasised with a flawless base and a glossy lip that didn’t take away from the impact of the eyes.

Looking at my completed face I couldn’t help but notice the impressive skill that went into creating the look, especially when it came to the eyes. 

Heading into MAC I knew that the brand is known for their bright colours and their bold, artistic looks

Heading into MAC I knew that the brand is known for their bright colours and their bold, artistic looks

The light handed bronze application sculpted my face well and my skin looked flawless.

Even though I was obsessed with the look, I had to fix the foundation on my chin after a couple of hours as it had started to crack due to how much product was on my face.

I also broke out the next day as my skin wasn’t able to breathe properly.

Although I got a few odd looks while I walked around the grocery store afterwards, when I went out that evening I received lots of compliments. 

Looking at my completed face I couldn't help but notice the impressive skill that went into creating the look, especially when it came to the eyes

Looking at my completed face I couldn’t help but notice the impressive skill that went into creating the look, especially when it came to the eyes

The light handed bronze application sculpted my face well and my skin looked flawless

The light handed bronze application sculpted my face well and my skin looked flawless

Many people said it was the best makeup they’ve ever seen on me and were impressed with how long the eye makeup lasted. 

I was really impressed with MAC and decided that if I ever needed someone to do my makeup again I would go back – but I would get them to go lighter on the foundation.

The skills were impeccable and it lasted from day to night, apart from the top up on the chin I had to do six hours in and the reapplication of lipstick.

Verdict: 9/10 

What products did MAC use? 

Prep + Prime – Hydrant

Strobe Cream – Hydrant

Studio Fix Foundation

Pro Longwear Concealer

Perky Longwear Eye Primer

Bronzing Powder

Rosy Cheeks Blush

Extra Dimension Skin Finish Highlighter

Soar Lip Pencil

Dazzleglass Lip Gloss

Prep + Prime Mascara

Brush Black Eyeliner

Brow Sculpt

False Lashes Extreme Black Mascara

Extended Play Mascara

Ready to Party Eyeshadow

Sketch Eyeshadow

Saucyness Eyeshadow

Passionate Eyeshadow 

BENEFIT: ONE HOUR = $120

I knew that Benefit had an amazing reputation when it came to how well they treat people’s eyebrows but I wasn’t fully aware of the bevy of makeup products they sold.

My makeup artist for the day, Hasina, paid attention to detail when it came to prepping my skin and I actually noticed the condition of my skin transforming in front of my eyes.

She made the effort to explain to me the benefit of each product, as well as how to use them, as she worked.

The finished look was a lot less dramatic than MAC’s version and initially had me underwhelmed but as the day went on I grew to appreciate it for what it was.

My makeup artist for the day, Hasina, paid attention to detail when it came to prepping my skin

My makeup artist for the day, Hasina, paid attention to detail when it came to prepping my skin

The main issue for me was that I tend to be a bit more dramatic with my makeup for special occasions so if I was to have had this look done for an event I would have added more to it myself.

I felt like this look was more of an everyday face of makeup and although Hasina’s makeup skills were impeccable, there was nothing about it visually that stood out.

Although I did receive compliments from friends and family when they saw me, many of them said it didn’t look too different to the makeup I do normally. 

After having an experience at MAC that wowed me I wasn’t as impressed initially by how my face turned out after going to the Benefit counter.

The finished look was a lot less dramatic than MAC's version and initially had me underwhelmed but as the day went on I grew to appreciate it for what it was

The finished look was a lot less dramatic than MAC’s version and initially had me underwhelmed but as the day went on I grew to appreciate it for what it was

I felt like this look was more of an everyday face of makeup and although Hasina's makeup skills were impeccable, there was nothing about it visually that stood out

I felt like this look was more of an everyday face of makeup and although Hasina’s makeup skills were impeccable, there was nothing about it visually that stood out

This being said, I was impressed by how much attention she paid to skincare and when I looked back on photos I became more inspired by the look she created. 

Unfortunately, similar to MAC, the foundation on my skin started to crack, this time in four hours. I also found that the makeup around my eyes was too heavy as it settled into some of the lines there.

The eyeliner on my waterline, which I haven’t done for years, also made my eyes look smaller.

Benefit would be perfect for those who prefer a much more subtle makeup look for special events but not for those, who like me, want something a more dramatic.

Verdict: 7/10 

What products did Benefit use? 

Moisture Prep Toning Lotion

Triple Performing Face Moisturizer  

Puff Off! Under Eye Gel 

The POREfessional: Matte Rescue

The POREfessional Face Primer 

Hello Happy Soft Blur Foundation 

Boi-ing Hydrating Concealer 

Hoola Matte Bronzer

Dandelion Twinkle Powder Highlighter

GALifornia Sunny Golden Pink Blusher

Dandelion Brightening Finishing Powder 

Air Patrol BB Cream Eyelid Primer

They’re Real! Duo Eyeshadow Blender

Foolproof Brow Powder 

Gimme Brow+ Volumising Eyebrow Gel 

BADgal Waterproof Eyeliner

Roller Lash Curling Mascara

They’re Real! Double the Lip 

BOBBI BROWN: ONE HOUR = $120 REDEEMABLE ON PRODUCTS

Going into my appointment with Bobbi Brown’s makeup artist Rosalie, I knew the brand were known for their more subtle looks.

Rosalie went above and beyond when it came to looking after my skin and she was thorough when she explained the use of everything she put on my face.

The finished look from Bobbi Brown proved to be the most subtle look of them all and left a lot to be desired.

I liked how she treated my eyebrows and loved the fact that she managed to highlight how big and almond shaped my eyes were but I was disappointed.

Going into my appointment with Bobbi Brown's makeup artist Rosalie, I knew the brand were known for their more subtle looks

Going into my appointment with Bobbi Brown’s makeup artist Rosalie, I knew the brand were known for their more subtle looks

Even though there were aspects of my experience of Bobbi Brown I enjoyed, overall I wasn’t impressed with the finished product. 

When I headed back to work my colleagues were also disappointed with what had been done.

Although it can’t be argued that it showed off impressive skill, the makeup she did wouldn’t suit a special occasion and I personally would have gone home and made adjustments to create a more striking look.

Even though there were aspects of my experience of Bobbi Brown I enjoyed, overall I wasn't impressed with the finished product

Even though there were aspects of my experience of Bobbi Brown I enjoyed, overall I wasn’t impressed with the finished product

When I headed back to work my colleagues were also disappointed with what had been done

When I headed back to work my colleagues were also disappointed with what had been done

I came back to work knowing that I could have done as good a job so know I would have felt upset if this is what I received after spending $120.

As the day wore on the makeup didn’t last either as cracks began to show only a couple of hours in.

This being said, if someone wants a natural face of makeup this would be a good option.

Verdict: 5/10

What products did Bobbi Brown use? 

Cleansing Milk

Hydrating Face Tonic

Intensive Skin Supplement

Hydrating Eye Cream

Hydrating Face Cream

Skin Relief and Skin Clarifier remedies

Light Bisque Corrector

Instant Full Cover Concealer

Intensive Skin Serum

Stick Foundation

Illuminating Finishing Powder

Stonestreet Bronzer

Desert Pink Blush

Highlight Powder Pink Blow

Pale Mauve Lip Pencil 

Crushed Lip Lilac Lipstick

Malted Pink Eye Base

Cream Shadow Stick Eyeshadow

Nude on Nude Eyeshadow Palette

Rosey Nudes Eyeshadow

Black Ink Eyeliner

Smokey Eye Mascara

FINAL VERDICT

All three brands have their own distinct looks and approaches to how they do their makeup but it is clear some were better than others.

Overall MAC did the best job and created a look that I was most impressed with and it received the most positive reaction from friends and family.

Benefit did the next best job although in my opinion it wasn’t an interesting enough look.

Last place was taken out by Bobbi Brown, as although they showed good skill the completed face wasn’t anything I couldn’t do myself.



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


Comments are closed.