Friday 15 August 2014

Mac Foundation shades for cool, pale skin: NW10, NW13, NW15

NW10, NW13, NW15
This is a post aimed at showing you the difference between the cool (NW) Mac shades at the paler end of the spectrum. If you're not near a counter and are not sure how pale the colours are, this reference guide is for you. I am by no means a professional, but I can tell you about my own experience with these shades.

A few things to bear in mind:

1. My skin is currently around NW15 (as recommended by a Mac MUA recently), but most of the year I find NW15 a bit too dark

2. My photographs are not the best quality and are purely there as a rough guide
For those who don't know, at Mac, NC and NW represent 'neutral cool' and 'neutral warm'. This is a point of confusion with many people because 'cool' usually refers to those with pink undertones to their face and 'warm' suggests yellow tones. However, in Mac it is the NC shades that are yellow and the NW that are pinker. A good way to understand the shades is to remember them as NC= not cool (therefore yellow) and NW= not warm (therefore pink).

When matching foundation, it is important to try it on your face (not just on your hand or arm which might be a different colour entirely). Also, you should see how it looks in daylight, not just under shop or indoor lighting.
Top: NW10    Middle: NW13    Bottom: NW15 

To the right are the swatches of the above foundations on the inside of my arm, which is quite a bit lighter than my face:

You can see that NW10 is the best match here.

However, on my face you can see that NW10 is too light; NW13 is ever so slightly darker and NW15 matches best:
              Bare skin                                 NW10                                     NW13                             NW15

I did wonder what the difference between NW10 and NW13 would be (NW13 is a newer shade to be released). The photos don't really show any difference, however NW13 looks way less 'white' on my skin in real life. I find that NW10 is always a tad too light and makes me look a bit 'ghostly', even in the Winter. NW13 is a perfect bridge between the extreme of NW10 and NW15, which can be a bit too orange-looking for us with very fair complexions.

So for me, NW13 is going to be a great colour to wear for most of the year and I'm so happy Mac has introduced it!

Do you find it difficult to find you perfect foundation shade?
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  1. Hello! I've nominated you for the Leibster Award! Find out more details on my post:

  2. Thank you so much, that means a lot! x

  3. I'm exactly the same as you! NW13 is my perfect match. I keep NW10 to mix in with things that are too dark, and I have NW15 for when I'm a bit tan.

    1. I'm really glad they brought out NW13 as it's a good match. x