M·A·C Cosmetics x Kabuki Magic

If you’re a die-hard M·A·C Cosmetics junkie, glued to your computer screen refreshing the website for the reveal of upcoming collaborations, and then counting down the days til they launch, you’re in for an absolute treat in February. The cosmetics giant has teamed up with three make-up artist legends to create a 50 piece collection by Diane Kendal, James Kaliardos and Kabuki. It’s available at all M·A·C Cosmetics stores nationwide on 20 February 2017 (our wedding anniversary!), so read on to see me wearing my favs from the collection, including that grey lipstick!

First, excuse my iPhone pics within the MAC PRO Britomart Store, I was too fascinated by Kabuki to take out my SLR.

Meeting KABUKI



Legendary, Brit-born New-Yorker Kabuki (born Richard Ogden)’s make-up artistry developed in the clubs of the Big Apple, before being plucked by Patricia Field to establish classic makeup looks for Sex and the City cast in its first season. Since then, his rise has been meteoric, creating looks for some of the world’s most famous faces.

After days of anticipation of meeting the artist behind music videos such as Rihanna’s Princess of China and Vogue cover shoots for Kendall Jenner, I attended Kabuki’s morning media launch and returned for the evening masterclass, where he recounted stories with Patricia Field, Michael Jackson, and Kylie Minogue.

Petite superstar Kylie was the one with the idea that Kabuki wear knee pads to work, as he’d be so low to the ground doing her make-up (which, you’ll see would have came in handy during our morning with him). Now, he says, he commonly sees artists and assistants on their knees – and considers sharing Kylie’s tip: He’s never worked with the ‘other’ Kylie, but her sister Kendall is the inspiration behind one lip colour of the Kabuki x MAC Collection (Sweet Thing) – the colour he mixed for her VOGUE shoot for Japan November 2015.

Kabuki’s light British accent, understated dress and gentle nature appears almost at odds with his incredible vibrant reputation – but his skills are as effective in real-life as they are in legend. He’s also the consummate professional – our model sadly fainted under the lights and heat, and Kabuki continued working on her look while she lay (beautifully, and after she’d come-to) on the floor. He said the light was perfect there anyway, though unfortunately he hadn’t brought his knee-pads!



A first look at MAC Cosmetics x Kabuki Collection and words like avant grade, drama and creative come to mind. However, as I found this weekend  the brand new collaboration is much more ‘wearable’ than initially meets the eye – no pun intended.

Bright blues, purple and green paint tubes create a fashion-forward editorial look for the campaign shoot, but are equally beautiful used as subtle pops of coloured eyeliner and/or experimental, fun summer make-up looks.

I put a few of Kabuki’s collection through its paces, to see how it translated into real life, and which pieces should go straight to the top of your hit list:

Must-Have – Today We Live Powder Blush Duo

MAC-Cosmetics-Kabuki-Diane-Kendal-James-Kaliardos-Today We Live Powder Blush DuoToday We Live Powder Blush Duo-MAC-Cosmetics-Kabuki-Diane-Kendal-James-Kaliardos-_9264

Today We Live Powder Blush Duo: a soft, coral blush paired with a medium, taupe-brown. The taupe is a very natural contouring shade for my light skin – it has neutral/warm undertones and a matte finish, while coral gives a warm, summery glow. Kabuki suggests the coral can be applied almost right to the die, bringing a warmth back to the face.

This is the one product I’m thinking about actually stocking up on – it’s a handbag staple I’d easily wear every day.

RRP: $60.00

Lust-Have – The Shining Hour / Dazzleshadow x4

The Shining Hour / Dazzleshadow MAC Cosmetics Kabuki The Shining Hour / Dazzleshadow MAC Cosmetics Kabuki

This palette of four almost needs no introduction, it’s shimmery AF and appeals to my magpie tendencies. Last Dance light pink pearl with duo-chromatic violet reflects is basically going to be used up by next week, as I’m currently blinding people with the amount of it I’m using as highlighter – very much taking the more is more approach here.

RRP: $88.00

Not so sure – This Modern Age

This Modern Age MAC Grey LipstickThis Modern Age MAC Grey Lipstick This Modern Age MAC Grey Lipstick

I also bit the bullet to try This Modern Age – which might just be a little too modern for me – a dirty, medium gray with a hint of green paired with a matte finish. While I know this shade would look fantastic on Kiekie Stanners, or at NZFW, it’s probably not something I’ve got the confidence to pull off, though there were a couple of people who replied to my instal-story and said it looked fab, so thank you, but I’m going to stick to the Kylie Jenner inspired Sweet Thing (neutral pinky-nude) for now. However, now I wish I’d tried a dazzle shadow over, to make a silver… so maybe later this week!

RRP: $55.00

The entire collection will hit M·A·C counters on 20 February 2017. Oh, and if you haven’t already heard, M·A·C x Caitlyn Jenner is on counter right now! Run, don’t walk. Photography: Mack Dewar.

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