MAC Studio Careblend/Pressed Powder Review!

mac studio careblend powder review

MAC Studio Careblend/Pressed Powder

Formulated to provide a smooth, virtually invisible, fresh-looking finish, this soft, cream-like powder is carefully blended to provide the skin with extra care, nourishment and comfort. (MAC COSMETICS)
“Studio Careblend Pressed Powder provides sheer to medium coverage with perfect skin adhesion that helps to create a more flawless, refined look to skin. Studio Careblend Pressed Powder’s versatility allows users to apply it alone, over moisturized skin, atop foundation to set, or simply to touch up and perfect skin throughout the day.” – Nick Gavrelis, Vice President, Global Product Development (read more here)
MAC Studio Careblend/Pressed Powder is available in eight (8) shades: Light (soft pale beige), Light Plus (pale golden beige), Medium (soft creamy beige), Medium Dark (caramel beige), Medium Plus (tan beige), Dark (deep caramel), Medium Deep (rich golden tan) and Dark Deep (rich golden bronze).
What really lured me into wanting Careblend is the claim that it doesn’t look powdery and it isn’t drying. Not to mention the amazing rating on Makeupalley (4.4/5 with an 86% re-purchase rate based on 79 reviews). I had a little bit of a tough time trying to pick a shade for my current NC30 skintone – I was debating with Light Plus (mainly because it has some good golden tones), Medium or Medium Dark. I figured that since they are sheer, there will be a little room for error, but my favorite MAC Sales Assoc. informed me that they do indeed pack pretty good pigment, so I played it safe and purchased Medium. I purchased this powder to solely use it as a setting powder. Other powders I’m currently using for a quick dusting across my face are Chanel Double Perfection Compact, MAC Studio Fix Powder or Rimmel Stay Matte Powder (I also love MAC Blot Powder, but I’m currently out of it).

MAC Studio Careblend Powder in Medium
Medium is a good match for my skin. It lacks yellow though if you’re medium skinned and particular about having the right amount of golden in your foundation or powder. I compared it to my MAC Studio Fix Powder in C3 for reference. Of course, C3 has a stronger yellow tone as all “C” powders do in the SF Powder range.
The consistency of this powder to the touch, feels like your average powder. Studio Fix Powder actually feels softer to the touch. But, once smoothed on the skin, Careblend feels much smoother, whereas Studio Fix feels a bit dryer and powdery (ironic, huh?) The powder isn’t completely sheer – it does have some pigment, so if you have relatively clear skin and need little coverage and oil control, this can be worn alone. I like using a large fluffy powder brush such as my Sigma F30 (FAV) and swirling the product all over my face to set my foundation. If I want a little extra coverage, I’ll use a more dense brush such as my Sephora Pro Platinum Bronzer Brush or a standard Kabuki. The finish with this powder indeed is not powdery at all. It gives a velvety satin finish that even reminds me a bit of my beloved Chanel Double Perfection Powder.
Here’s a little comparison. You can see a big difference in the finish of Studio Fix and Studio Careblend. Studio Fix is much more dull and powdery, whereas Studio Careblend has a bit of luminosity.
Left to Right: MAC Studio Fix Powder in C3, MAC Studio Careblend Powder in Medium and MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Medium/Natural & Shimmer (the medium/natural side) Limited Edition
I don’t need all that much oil control, just a little bit in my t-zone, and this keeps my skin from getting shiny throughout the day very well. Based on some reviews I’ve read, some don’t recommend this powder for those with oily skin as it may not control oil well enough, but I’ve also read that some oily skin found it works great. The reviews are pretty mixed. I think it would work particularly well for those with dry skin as contains moisturizing oils (Safflower, Meadowfoam & Olive) as well as Shea Butter and it doesn’t seem to accentuate dryness. I really love this powder and will continue using it for an all over setting powder. I still plan on purchasing MAC Blot Powder as well because I like to have a powder on hand that won’t deposit any color (mainly to powder my under-eyes).
MAC Studio Careblend/Pressed Powder is $23 for .35 oz, $4 cheaper than MAC’s Mineralize Skinfinish (plus Careblend has a mirrored compact & powder puff, the MSF has neither). It’s slightly more expensive than MAC Blot which is $23 for .42 oz (.07 oz more product).
.35 oz really isn’t a lot of product, and with the silkiness of this powder, you can probably easily go overboard with it without realizing. When I used my MAC Blot Powder daily, I would hit pan very quickly with it, so I’m going to make sure to use my Careblend sparingly.
What’s your favorite setting powder?

26 thoughts on “MAC Studio Careblend/Pressed Powder Review!

  1. Belle – Medium works perfectly! Do try it! 🙂

    Kim – Yeah, it definitely is. But I still love Studio FixP Powder for the fantastic coverage it gives. Careblend has considerably less coverage when used alone.


  2. I've hit pan on my MSF Natural, and I've been debating whether I want to repurchase that or try something different. I'm still on the fence, but we'll see how it works out. Thanks so much for the review!


  3. It's funny that you mentioned you would hit pan quickly if you used it everyday, because that's exactly what happened to me!I was so surprised! Must be because I use a kabuki!
    I wasn't overly impressed with it's oil control (I have combo skin) but when I compare it to Maybelline dream matte powder (better oil control), I can't argue that Careblend definitely gives a better finish!


  4. Thanks for the review. It was really helpful because im running low on my studio fix and thought about picking up the careblend 🙂 The MAC prep and prime and BE mineral veil are my fav setting powders at the moment.



  5. ive used the mac studio fix powder, it one of my top faves i also enjoy revlon colorstay pressed powder theyre very similar in my opinion & obviously the revlon one is much cheaper(:

    <3 BB


  6. StealMyHeartLove – I only really have had a problem with Studio Fix Powder.. So I don't really wear it that often for that reason. :\

    Ameeta – Haha! Studio Fix Powder is a really good powder. I haven't found any other powder with better coverage!

    Amy – You're welcome! Both are great products – maybe try it out the next time you're at MAC and wear it around for the day and see how you like it before purchasing it.

    HelloKittyNightmare – Seriously! I'm a little embarrassed to say I've hit pan in a month before. Thats why I kinda stopped buying it for a while. Because it's incredibly sheer, you can really pack it on without noticing.

    I didn't like Dream Matte Powder when I purchased it a couple of years back, but it's such a rave product, I think I may try it again! I may of just gotten the wrong shade before.

    Dee Vine – YW! 🙂

    Andee Layne – You're welcome, hun! Hope you try it!

    Rinz – Awesome!


  7. PeaceLoveMia – You're welcome! It definitely is worth checking out. 🙂

    MaviDeniz – You'll really like Careblend – the finish really sets it apart from other powders. I haven't tried either of those powders. I've always wanted to try Prep & Prime.

    BeautyBehaved – Really?? I haven't tried the CS powder – I must check it out!!! TY!

    TzeYien89 – YW! Glad it was helpful 🙂

    Justine (Productrater) – Yay, good to hear!

    PrincezzJazmin – Awesome! I think so too!


  8. i love studio fix (it's been my HG for 10 years now)and I also wear the color C3! Love it. I am afraid to try other products—i have tried the mineralize skin finish and didn't care for it. This powder is intriguing though- thanks for the review.


  9. I love this powder! For reference I am NC42 and I bought medium dark. Its a great setting/retouching powder but it does run out quickly. I love the msf as a setting powder as well or clinique stay matte powder.


  10. Awesome article!! I'm just starting to get into mac foundations and powders, I've been using the rest of their stuff for years though…now I'm obsessed lol …I'm really interested in the studio fix, and the careblend was something I ran into by accident. And yesterday, awesome Ashley at perimeter Macy's mac (Atlanta,ga) also helped me with mineralize natural, which I loved on top of their bb compact as well as studio sculpt. I think all three will be great during hot months, and I think the careblend and msfn are super awesome during winter to set….I'm an nc42 :o) usually for bb creams and similars, but after 2ne1's missing you and that awesome high coverage,I wanted to go stronger for at least winter ;o) who was the mu artist for that vid btw??


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