MUA ‘Makeup Academy’ brand

When sorting through all my makeup, trying to rearrange it for the millionth time in recent months, I realised I had a variety of MUA products and thought it might be useful to do a general brand review based on the experiences I have.
Personally seeing others do brand reviews is super helpful and points me in the right direction and whilst MUA is a cheaper brand at the drugstore nobody wants to end up wasting their money on products somebody else could have told them was bad.

Powder eyeshadow

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This palette, called Undressed that costs £4 on MUA’s website, is a really simple and useful one as it comes with a variety of shimmery shades and ones that, whilst they have a small bit of shimmer in, are suitable for the crease. With it having a variety of nudes and shadows that can be used for a smokey eye it is great for an everyday makeup look but can also be used to turn a look into evening glam.

The quality of the powders here vary and some of them appear a little dry and patchy. The most noticable one with this issue is called ‘fuel’ and is supposed to be a black with a bit of glitter included. Other shades, such as ‘Rose Ash’ and ‘Bronze Ore’, are super buttery and have fantastic pigmentation without too much fallout.

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This is a good palette and is great if you are on a budget and want something that you can perhaps just add a base to and take on holiday with you or to use to create a quick look.

I would say that there are better powder eyeshadows out there at the drugstore and find Makeup Revolution to have a more consistent texture and pigmentation in their eyeshadows but these are nothing to be sniggered at for the cost.

Cream eyeshadow

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Of course the main issue with cream products is that they can go off much quicker than a powder product, look messy in the pan quickly and create more risk of creasing when applied to the eyes.

MUA are really aware of the issue that a lot of people have when it comes to creasing cream shadows though and address that by providing an eye primer in this set. The primer is actually really good as it helps to even out the eyes and hide any redness or veins that are otherwise noticable and for me it helps to brighten my eyes. However, I fully understand that some people with darker skin tones have issues with this primer as it just looks too stark and if it isn’t applied properly becomes very noticable.

This is a metallic palette and therefore it is really difficult to use all of the shades in one eyelook because of the way they are so intense. Therefore it is a little more difficult to use if you do not have more base or calm colours in a cream form as they do not mix well with powders.

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These are great products and really do last well when applied with a primer. I have had these for nearly a year, which is the recommended length of time to use it for, and I am aware that with them being cream they are more likely to go off so I need to keep an eye on them. However considering it is not the most practical collection of products I think I have used a fairly large amount of them all.

I would recommend the cream eyeshadows by MUA to people but only if there really is not a powder shadow that can be used wet available in the colour that they want as that will last a lot longer on the eyes and in storage too.

Cream Blush

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These creams blushers are absolutely fantastic. They apply to the face so smoothly and don’t end up all patchy (at least on my fairly dry cheeks).

However these do struggle to get through the day if you are the sort of person to lean on your face alot or happen to produce excess oil or sweat for whatever reason.

Like many blushers you have to take a really light hand to these if you intend to use them as trying to blend them away is a little more difficult because of how creamy they are. They also need to be set with a powder as the setting speed of them is not the greatest and they can easily smudge out to the wrong places if you are not careful.

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Generally I am much more of a powder blush person and I would not say these particularly change my mind however these are workable, blendable and buildable and come in a great variety of shades.

Pencil Eyeliner

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Having a white eyeliner might seem a bit strange or a little ‘theatrical’ to some people and I can completely understand that. However for me I find it useful to have around and to sometimes add to my waterline if my eyes are looking a little small and lame.

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Whilst it swatches very white it does not come across that white when applied to the eyes. It is actually really hard to get the product onto the waterline so it is never super white or glaringly obvious when applied.

The fact the pencil has a lid that includes a sharpener would be good but the sharpener is super difficult to use so I just use a normal sharpener instead.

Overall this is one of the products that would be really good if they just focussed on the formula a little more it would be a really good drugstore product. As it is though I would not buy another one as I know of plenty of eyeliners that are a similar price but much more comfortable to apply and to put the colour onto the waterline.

Brow Pencil

It is the year of the brow, apparently, and we should all step up our brow game from 2015 to 2016. I am not completely sure if I will ever be happy with my brows or if they will ever be on trend however I really do need a brow pencil and various brow products.

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This was the first brow pencil I purchased and it really put me off doing my brows for so long as it is super difficult to sharpen to a fine point and to apply it lightly. The pencil is just too creamy and too difficult to work with without your brows becoming a massive slug mess

I have quite dark natural brows but because this is such a full on pencil it just overwhelms the natural hairs and does not look in any way natural or realistic so because of the formula I would not recommend this product to anybody.

Lipsticks

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Lipsticks are something very personal to each and every one of us when it comes to colours and finishes. However we all want something to be comfortable on the lips, have a good wear time and do exactly what it is supposed to and what it claims.

The matte lipsticks are very comfortable to wear and whilst they do not look as matte as a liquid lipstick tends to they dry down to an almost completely matte appearance. Having them not dry down makes them softer on the lips and more relief but it also means they transfer a little but generally they have lasting power even when eating or drinking.

The normal formula lipsticks actually feel a lot worse on the lips than the matte ones do. They feel a lot drier and are a lot more difficult to apply but I am aware it might just be this formula is aging a bit and therefore it is a slightly older formula than they have now.

Lasting time of the normal lipsticks is fairly adequate and they do not tend to transfer too much onto a cup or slide away whilsy eating and drinking which is fantastic as so many shiny lipsticks disappear as soon as you put anything near your mouth.

Overall

The pencil products really leave me underwhelmed and there are other drugstore brands such as Rimmel and Maybelline that do pencils for the lips and eyes so much better.

The cream blush products are good as far as cream blush products go but I would still recommend a powder one because of lasting power and also how they may last on certain skin types.

Their eyeshadows, like a lot of drugstore brands, are generally of good quality and really workable to create a variety of looks. There are a couple of eyeshadows that are too powdery and have too much fallout but the cost of a palette is overall great and makes it acceptable to have a poor quality shadow.

The lipsticks are absolutely incredible and the matte and regular formulas are both super comfortable on the lips, have fairly long lasting power and do not go riding off all around your face.

If somebody could only buy one product from the MUA line I would have to recommend a lipstick out of all the items I have tried but if somebody wants to have a variety of makeup looks for a low cost I would not cringe at them getting eyeshadows from this brand (but generally I would point them to Makeup Revolution for eyeshadows).

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