REVIEW | MAC Liptensity Lipsticks

MAC lipsticks are truly some of the most iconic products in the world of makeup. They’re usually what most people think of when they want to buy their first “grown up” lipstick, and for good reason. They have great formulas and they have so many shades to accommodate so many different skin tones. I usually don’t veer into the other lip products made by MAC, however the new Liptensity line has been gaining a lot of traction on the hype train. I’ve been hearing good things about how hydrating and pigmented they are. Given that I’m all about hydrating lip products, especially during this time of the year, I wanted to see what they were all about. If you’d like to learn more about my thoughts on the MAC Liptensity lipsticks, please keep reading.



The MAC Liptensity line is currently available on the MAC website and in most department stores which carry MAC (i.e. Nordstrom, The Bay, etc). Each lipstick retails for $25 CAD and comes with 0.12 oz of product. The Liptensity lipsticks come with a little more product than the regular MAC lipsticks, which have 0.10 oz of product. There are 24 shades in the MAC Lipstensity line ranging from neutral to very bold. I picked up the shades ‘Smoked Almond’ and ‘Toast and Butter’, both very beautiful neutral shades which I thought would look great on a more tanned complexion. Here is the description for the Liptensity lipsticks from the MAC website:

A brilliant formula that pushes the boundaries of colour. Each Lipstick holds intense amounts of pigment, resulting in extreme colour intensity, clarity, and vibrancy. This luxurious gelled base melts on contact, providing fully saturated colour with a satin finish in one stroke.


  • Gel formula glides on smoothly
  • Long-wearing, eight hours
  • Comfortable formula

The packaging is absolutely beautiful. It is sleek, minimal, and I love how the shade of the lipstick is reflected on the cap.

MAC Liptensity Smoked Almond

‘Smoked Almond’ is described as a bright rosebrown. This shade was certainly very vibrant, therefore I believe that its shade description is spot on. I didn’t think that the formula was very creamy and gel-like when I initially applied this lipstick, however as the product started to warm up, it became much easier to apply. The pigmentation of this lipstick is definitely one for the books; it truly is very bold and opaque, just like one would expect with a liquid lipstick, however it is very creamy and goes on the lips in one uniform shade. It is not patchy in the slightest and it blends beautifully. The product doesn’t sink into my lip lines and it feels very comfortable and hydrating. I didn’t find this lipstick to be as long-wearing as it claims to be, however it definitely leaves a bit of a stain behind even after eating and drinking. By the end of a workday, I found that there was still some reminiscent product on my lips, so it’s not like it wipes off completely. It just isn’t as vibrant as it was when I initially applied it. That said, I appreciate how gradually the product wears off throughout the day.


MAC Liptensity in Smoked Almond on NC40 skin


MAC Liptensity Toast and Butter

‘Toast and Butter’ is described as a peachy cinnamon. This shade ended up being a lot darker than I thought it would be, however I’ve been digging it. Just like with ‘Smoked Almond’, it took some work to get the product to apply smoothly onto my lips initially, but after the product warmed up a bit, it was very creamy and opaque. This shade was very comfortable to wear and it felt very hydrating on the lips. I also found that it didn’t transfer much, despite the fact that it has such  creamy and opaque formula. This product certainly did fade within 8 hours of drinking and eating periodically, however it faded very well and it left behind a subtle stain by the end of the day.


MAC Lipstensity in Toast and Butter on NC40 skin



I figured I’d have a few dupes in my collection for these shades, and while I did find some close ones, I couldn’t find any that were an exact match. For ‘Smoked Almond’, I found that KVD Cathedral was probably the closest match, however I much prefer the formula of the Lipstensity line. MAC Taupe and Whirl are also close, however both of these have a matte formula and are certainly not as creamy and comfortable as the Lipstensity lipsticks.

As for ‘Toast and Butter’, I didn’t end up finding any dupes. For some reason I thought that it would be similar to MAC Verve, however clearly I was dead wrong. I have a feeling that MAC Persistence might be a closer contender, however I couldn’t find it and unfortunately could not include it in this swatch test. If it does come up in the near future, I’ll be sure to include a swatch in this post. Regardless, I’m glad that I picked this shade up because clearly I don’t have anything quite like it.

PicMonkey Photo

L to R: MAC Smoked Almond, MAC Retro, MAC Taupe, MAC Whirl, Kat Von D Studded Kiss Lipstick in Cathedral, MAC Toast and Butter, MAC Verve


Final Thoughts

I’m a huge fan of the MAC Liptensity line. The formula is truly wonderful as it is very hydrating and pigmented while still being very blendable and comfortable. This product truly does melt into your skin and doesn’t look as if it’s just been painted on like most highly pigmented products tend to do. They are somewhat long-wearing, however I wouldn’t say that they look perfect after 8 hours of wear. They have a great shade selection and the price-point isn’t too shabby. I would definitely recommend the Liptensity line to anyone who is looking for a richly pigmented lipstick that is also very hydrating with a creamy/satin finish.

I want to note that I’m not sure how the bold and colourful shades would wear throughout the day; I would imagine that they would be a little more high maintenance given that the formula is quite creamy therefore some transfer should be expected. Just something to keep in mind!

Have you tried the MAC Lipstensity line?

Do you prefer matte or creamy lipsticks?

Let me know in the comments below!

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