The Science Behind Beauty

By Dr Juliet O.

Thursday, 25 May 2017

What's Better For Your Warm Undertone? Nars Luminous Weightless Foundation vs MAC Studio Fix (Review)

I bought the Nars All Day Luminous Weightless foundation about 6 months ago because I literally saw it everywhere online, so many people were either using the Nars All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation or the Nars Sheer Glow Foundation. I was looking for a new foundation anyway, so I thought I'd give it a try. I wanted to buy it online, but I didn't actually know what colour I was, so I went to look back at the youtube videos of my favourite bloggers Patricia Bright, Jennie Jenkins (aka Beauty by JJ) and Chanel Ambrose who pretty much have the same complexion as mine and they were actually using the shade 'Benares'. 

And of course, when I received it, it wasn't exactly my shade, it was a tad bit darker than my skin complexion. I was so gutted, because I ordered it to Romania, so there was no way I could send it back. But hey, I had to work with it by doing more highlighting and can definitely say it is an amazing foundation and it has the best coverage.


I thought it'd be great to include a comparison between the Nars All Day Luminous Foundation (Benares) and the Mac Studio Fix Fluid Foundation (NW45). This is an old favourite of mine and I have been using it on and off for the past 6 years, so any foundation that beats this one is definitely a keeper.


1) Scent/ parfum:

NARS- This definitely wins! The scent is anything special to be honest but it does have a soft, light smell and when compared to the mac one.  

MAC- I did find that when I did start using the Nars foundation and then switched back to this one, it did smell a bit more like paint and chemicals (not sure if I'm explaining it well), but it actually made me notice that the scent could be better.

2) Colour and Undertones:

NARS- Cool/Brown tone- I am usually more of a warm tone, so I did find it a little bit too cool brown for me, so I think I might try a shade, or half a shade lighter to see if it can give me some more warmer tones. 

MAC- Warm/ Orange tone- This is more of complexion it is definitely a lot warmer, so in terms of colour I do prefer this. However I do think with some highlighting and using a lighter concealer can neutralise the orange/red areas I get with the Nars foundation. 

Swatch and Review on Nars and Mac liquid foundations for darker skin women
Swatches: Nars: Top // Mac: Bottom

3) Coverage, Consistency and Texture:

NARS- It has a lovely consitency and it feels light, watery and literally 'weightless'. I usually use 2-3 pumps and use my makeup brush to swirl it around and warm it up. Afterwards, I apply it to my face and with only a few pumps I get a full coverage!

MAC- It has a much thicker consistency and it definitely isn't watery like the Nars one, I do use 4-5 pumps usually to apply it evenly to my entire face. And comparing the two, it is definitely much thicker and gives an equal or tiny bit less coverage.

4) Finish and Effect:

NARS: I absolutely loved the effect I get when using this foundation, I literally feel like my skin is radiant and glowing. It definitely has a 'luminious effect' and if I am being completely honest, I haven't come across a foundation as light, glowy and with a flawless finish. 

MAC: I still love the the effect of the studio fix foundation and its finish is completely different from Nars. I would describe it more like a matte finish, it doesn't give luminousity but a matte glow finish. So I guess it depends on what finish or effect you want. I like both to be honest, just depends on what I prefer that day I guess.

Makeup showing Benares foundation by Nars Luminous Weightless for darker skin women of colour and bloggers
Makeup: Nars: Benares

5) Skin Type Suitability

NARS- My skin type is normal and I do think this will definitely work better for combination/ oily skin types, mainly because, it contains a lot of oil in it. At the end of the day, I could see a lot of oil and often had to blot it away. This is good for combination/oily skin types because the foundation will provide a good amount of oil, so that the skin doesn't compensate for it by secreting large amounts of oil. To find out if you have oily skin please see my previous post on how to find your skin type. If you don't have an oily skin type, I would definitely recommend you use a primer as a base first.

MAC- This is more suited to my skin type, it is good for normal/combination skin and even some oily skin types. Its not particularly good for dry skin types, so if this you, you probably won't get on well with this. However, I do think it sits on my skin a lot better than the Nars one!
6) Final thoughts: 

The Nars foundation has every potential to replace my mac foundation, my only dilemma now is finding a warmer tone. I'm pretty sure, once I find it, I'd probably never be able to put it down. It was better in terms of consistency, texture, texture and scent.
Thanks for reading my review! If you want to see more posts like this please let me know and if you have this foundation I'd love to hear how you're getting on!

Love you lots J x



  1. I am a huge fan of the Nars Sheer Glow foundation, so I highly recommend you still give that one a shot! But I totally agree with you that the Luminous Weightless one is an absolute winner in terms of consistency and coverage! Loved that you compared it to the Mac one too!

    All the love,
    Mary from

    1. Thanks Mary Anne! I will definitely try out the Sheer Glow Foundation as well, I've heard great reviews about it! Xx

  2. My foundation of choice. Having used studio fix for years, more out of habit than anything else, then to Bobby Brown stick foundation, this NARS is definite ly my fav. Light, great coverage and the bottle lasts such a long time, so really good value for money. Would recommend you trying again but heading to a store to get the right colour for you x


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