MAC Starring You Spellbinder Shadows Reviews & Swatches


Stairs to the Stars

MAC Stairs to the Stars Spellbinder Shadow ($25.00 for 0.02 oz.) is a slightly blackened, reddish-burgundy with warmer undertones and fine, shimmer finish that looked more satin-like applied dry and more metallic applied wet. The texture was incredibly finely-milled and soft to the touch.

There’s nothing that really suggests that they could (or should) be used with a dampened brush, but they were so dismal when I initially swatched them dry, I thought, while we’re here… and there’s a massive improvement when working with it with a dampened brush (just water). The pigmentation was semi-sheer applied dry and opaque applied wet, while I had light fallout working with it dry, I had no fallout working with it wet and it still had all the blendability of a great powder eyeshadow. It wore well for seven hours before fading noticeably applied dry, and it wore for a full eight hours well when I used it with a dampened brush.

(Because this wasn’t advertised as a wet/dry formula, the rating is only for the product used dry.)

Stars Align

MAC Stars Align Spellbinder Shadow ($25.00 for 0.02 oz.) is a medium-dark gray with cool undertones and a soft sheen. It had semi-sheer coverage with a very silky-smooth texture that felt finely-milled to the touch. It applied evenly and blended out well, but there was light fallout and the color wouldn’t build up. The color stayed on well for seven hours before fading a bit.

I’d recommend using it with a wet brush, which intensified the coverage to opaque, finish to metallic, and improved adhesion and wear.

Swing on a Star

MAC Swing on a Star Spellbinder Shadow ($25.00 for 0.02 oz.) is a blackened-brown base with flecks of olive green and blue-teal shimmer and larger sparkle. It had semi-opaque pigmentation applied with a dry brush, which was hard to build up without getting fallout.

The texture was very, very finely-milled, but it was so fine that it could easily puff up and you could see it in the air. The formula, while it’s not marketed as such, really benefits from being applied with a dampened brush–it’s opaque, metallic, and rich; all the things it was supposed to be dry. It wore well for seven and a half hours dry on bare skin.

Wishful Thinking

MAC Wishful Thinking Spellbinder Shadow ($25.00 for 0.02 oz.) is a medium purple with subtle, warm undertones and a soft sheen. It had sheer color payoff that wasn’t buildable without using it with a dampened brush, and then it was opaque and metallic in a single layer.

The texture felt incredibly silky and finely-milled, and there was minimal fallout during application when I worked with it dry. The color stayed on decently for seven hours before fading a bit on me.

Formula Overview

The formula is supposed to be “long-wearing,” “non-fading,” and “non-creasing” with a “rich, meteoric metallic finish” and “stay-true colour.” It uses “black, ionized pigments” that “are magnetically charged” to fuse the “loose powder together.” You can see some of that at play in the jar, but it doesn’t really seem particularly remarkable on the lid–I still had some fallout during application when working with the shades dry with a brush. I had less trouble applying with a fingertip when it came to fallout.

I don’t think the shades really seem complex unless applied with a dampened brush or over a tacky base–then they seem to intensify, deepen, and the finish really sparkles (“meteoric metallic finish”). Dry, they are more satin-to-pearl, look a little faded, and don’t have much dimension. The pigmentation ranged from medium to semi-opaque dry and were all opaque when applied with a dampened brush. They wore between seven and eight hours on me before fading, and they were less prone to fading when just applied with a dampened brush (using water, not an adhesive or setting spray).



Synthetic Fluorphlogopite, Alumina, Calcium Sodium Borosilicate, Silica, Tin Oxide, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Sorbic Acid, [+/- Mica, Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891), Iron Oxides (Ci 77491), Iron Oxides (Ci 77492), Iron Oxides (Ci 77499), Aluminum Powder (Ci 77000), Bismuth Oxychloride (Ci 77163), Blue 1 Lake (Ci 42090), Bronze Powder (Ci 77400), Carmine (Ci 75470), Chromium Hydroxide Green (Ci 77289), Chromium Oxide Greens (Ci 77288), Copper Powder (Ci 77400), Ferric Ammonium Ferrocyanide (Ci 77510), Ferric Ferrocyanide (Ci 77510), Manganese Violet (Ci 77742), Ultramarines (Ci 77007), Yellow 5 Lake (Ci 19140)]

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