Review: MAC Tendertone Lip Balms

By Voxy  

mac lipbalm 1What? Limited edition, no longer in production? Say it ain’t so, Joe.

Alas. Joe says it is, in fact, so. Joe also says, though, that you can still get these products at your local CCO, Amazon, or (sometimes) on eBay (watch for scams). And there seems to be a lot of pom-pom-waving for MAC bringing this product back, which is understandable because They Are Awesome.

Whereas the Korres lip butters are clearly a lip care product first and a lip color enhancer second, these are a glamour product first and a lip conditioner second — but you would never know it from the lip-feel. In the top photo, the pink shade is Sweet and Nice, and the coppery shade is Deep Sigh. These look deeply pigmented in the container but go on (with a brush, preferably) smooth, glossy, and sheer. There is a little bit of shimmer in the coloration of the product, but there’s absolutely no glitter on the lips. Very sophisticated. The lip-feel is luscious, the formula lasts for several hours, and, when worn over bare lips, it wears off without any crustiness, dryness, or blotchy color. They’re also SPF 12, which is a nice perk, and even though they’re called “balms” they’re as glossy as any tube gloss. They are smooth and totally un-sticky.

I <heart> these so much I can hardly stand it.

mac lip balm on

Only disadvantage: they’re heavy in my purse. I know — if that’s all I’ve got to complain about, it must be a pretty darned good product, right? Well, OK, I can find something else to complain about. They’re heavy in my purse because the glass base is unnecessarily large and weighty, which also (not coincidentally) has the effect of making you think there’s more product in the container than there actually is, and you know that deceptive packaging drives me nuts.

These glosses last a couple of hours on the lips; if you were just going out and smiling at people, you’d probably get five hours out of one. (That’s Sweet and Nice I’m wearing there, by the way, over bare lips.) However, if you teach or are otherwise talking all the time, it will wear off more quickly, but that’s OK. Like other MAC lip products, there is a slight vanilla/fruity scent to the product, but it’s quite subtle.


MAC Tendertone Lip Balms: I hardly know what price to assign this product, since reseller prices change all the time, but it’s currently $11.95 on Amazon.

Provenance: Purchased (via CCO).

Price/Value Ratio (high-end: poor/fair/good/excellent): Good, I think. Because of the way the glass base refracts light, it’s hard to tell the actual size of the pot of gloss inside the container. If it turns out that I run out after having only had them for two weeks, I shall be revising this estimation tout de suite.

Purchase again? You bet your bottom dollar.

(Have you used this product? Love it? Hate it? Want it? Let us know in the comments!)

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  1. avatar marigolds
    Posted December 12, 2009 at 4:41 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Voxy: I sense there is going to be a learning curve with it

    I watched this video – note the way she holds her eyes/the brush; it’s how I do it, and it works really well.


    • avatar Voxy
      Posted December 14, 2009 at 10:03 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Hey, I used it and did a review which will go up tomorrow!

      Must. Have. More. Colors. Now.


  2. avatar marigolds
    Posted December 10, 2009 at 11:50 pm | Permalink | Reply

    What do you think of the Fluidline eyeliner? What color did you get? Isn’t it annoying to have to wash the brush every single time? But doesn’t it look fabulous and last all day? And also, don’t you find it really crucial to have super-steady hands when you put it on so that you don’t look like a junior-high hooker?


    • avatar Voxy
      Posted December 11, 2009 at 12:17 am | Permalink | Reply

      I actually haven’t used it yet (ducks to avoid mackerel slap from Marigolds), because I sense there is going to be a learning curve with it and I don’t want to be smearing it all over my eyes during my crap-I’m-going-to-be-late-for-class makeup rush in the morning. Since classes are about to end, I’m hoping to experiment with it next week.

      Per your recommendation, I got the black, which frightens me a little because it’s *really* black. Now that I know I risk looking like a junior-high hooker if I do it wrong, that just raises the stakes! :)


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