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MAC VIVA GLAM LIPSTICK
Regular readers of my reviews will know that I am a big fan of MAC lipsticks. I particularly buy from two main collections, the Matte lipsticks and the Sheen Supreme range which are both excellent. However last year I noticed that a section of the MAC website was devoted to a group of lipsticks that were special in that the full amount of the lipstick, minus the VAT, was given to their charity- the MAC AIDS Fund. This charity is devoted to helping people with AIDS and HIV all over the world. This really interested me, and so I looked into these lipsticks more fully as I thought it would be wonderful to think that this money was being channelled into such a worthy cause, as this disease is still so prevalent in many areas of the world.
THE VIVA GLAM COLLECTION
The VIVA Glam collection is the group of lipsticks I am referring to, and the first of these was launched in 1994. This shade was a very bright Matte red and since I don't wear red shades at all, I was pleased to see that the collection was expanded over the following years, and now has 6 shades in the range so there is something for everyone. To give you an idea of the shades on offer - Viva Glam 11 is a pinky mauve satin finish, Viva Glam 111 is referred to as a foxy plum brown, and was added to the range in 2000 and is also a matte. Then followed Viva Glam 1V, a rose gold frost finish in 2002, and in 2004 the shade V was launched and is a neutral pink with a smooth lustre finish. The final addition to date is Viva Glam V1 which is a warm terracotta plum also a lustre. There is also a special collection of two lipsticks called Nicki which are inspired by Nicki Minaj which also fall under the "all to charity" umbrella.
As I was interested in the Viva Glam V which seemed to offer the most wearable everyday shade, I researched it carefully over on my favourite website Makeup-alley.com, where reviewers gave this a 4.3 out of 5, with 77% saying they would re-purchase. This is a high score, as reviewers over there are very discerning, and as I have said in previous reviews the numbers of writers there make the statistics very credible, and they offer a really good guide as to whether to make a purchase or not. If you are interested in the other colours it may be helpful to point out that the original version, Viva Glam 1, scores an impressive 4.6 out of 5, with 86% saying they would repurchase. There is less certainty over the Viva Glam 11, which is the pinky mauve shade with 3.6 out of 5 and only 62% saying they would re-purchase. This may be due to the fact that lipsticks with mauve undertones in pale shades can be difficult to wear, and often impart a less than healthy appearance. Viva Glam 111, the plum brown is very popular, and scores 4.5 out of 5 and 86% say they would repurchase. Viva Glam 1V, the rose gold is also popular with a score of 4.4 out of 5, with 84% saying they would re-purchase. Finally there is much love for Viva Glam V1 with 4.3 out of 5 and 79% saying they would repurchase. So overall the range seems to have much popularity and so let's look more closely at my chosen shade- Viva Glam V.
VIVA GLAM V
All the shades retail for £14 and are available from MAC and also from department stores such as Debenhams, and there are many MAC outlets at airports. I like to wait for special offer days and then purchase from Debenhams, as they have a beauty club which offers good deals and postage free orders.
Viva Glam 5 is a lustre finish which means that in simple terms it is sheer and has a glossy finish rather than a matte. It is presented in a similar bullet black container with the exception that it has a red line around it to distinguish it from the regular lipsticks MAC produce. This does facilitate ease of finding it when it is in my make up bag with other MAC lipsticks. It is exactly as MAC describes it to be, and that is a neutral pink and it has a little shimmer but this is subtle and understated. I would say that the lipstick is a nude rose with brown undertones. I find the lipstick to be moisturising, and in many ways it enhances my natural lip colour, and is ideal for the days when you want something to match almost every look you are doing on your eyes. I tend to wear different looks according to the seasons- so more brown autumnal shades in the colder months, and more peach and pink shades as spring goes into summer, but this lipstick spans all the seasons and can be worn with almost any combination of eye colours and skin tones. As such it is an ideal handbag staple lipstick that can be applied easily and quickly to give a polished look. Due to this being understated and wearable it makes an ideal interview lipstick, and would certainly suit an office look as well as an everyday relaxed weekend style.
The lasting qualities of this lipstick I would say are fair to good. On me it lasts about 4 hours without needing to be touched up, less though if I drink or eat in that time frame.
WOULD I RE-PURCHASE?
I suppose the question is would I re-purchase? I think I am on the fence here, but am climbing over into the "buy again" camp with some reservation because I have so many favourites that I use more frequently. As a result it means that I tend not to wear this shade as often as I think I should if I was to plan to replace it when finished. Also I tend in general to prefer either MAC Matte lipsticks - favourites in this group are Taupe and Velvet Teddy, and MAC Sheen Supremes for a more glossy look - favourites here are Bare Again, Can't Get Enough, Supreme Style and Impressive. Viva Glam 5 being a lustre is in-between these finishes. I think I would probably try Viva Glam 111 next time as this is a Matte finish, and is a deep plum brown just to see if I could wear this darker shade in the autumn and winter, as it is a colour I often go for on dark cold days. I love the idea that my purchase is all going to all go to charity and so this is making this decision much easier.
Having said this I do really like Viva Glam V lipstick, and it is well worth looking at as it is a great colour to have in your handbag, and is especially good to wear on holiday when you just want something to put on quickly that looks pretty and sophisticated. The beauty of this lipstick is that it suits all ages and all skin tones, and due to it having a lustre finish you can wear it without a gloss over, and still have that slight shiny look if that appeals. I have done this myself if I want a simple understated easy look, and it works every time making it such a wearable shade. I think my impression is that this lipstick pleases intensely, but doesn't absolutely blow me away like some of MAC's lipsticks do. For example I wouldn't have a back-up ready, as if it was discontinued I would be able to wear an alternative- that isn't how I feel about my all time favourites that I do have back-ups for in case they are discontinued. I think I would award it a solid 4 out of 5, and certainly not a risk purchase for anyone to make, as it is a lovely easy to wear colour, and best of all every purchase helps those with HIV and AIDS, so for this reason alone it appeals to me on so many levels.
This review will also be posted on Ciao under my user name Violet1278
MAC Viva Glam Lipstick / In 1994 / MAC introduced VIVA GLAM / an outspoken deep red that was universal in its appeal and its glamour / In 1997 / a second lipstick was created VIVA GLAM II / a lightly pinked mauve / VIVA GLAM III / a foxy brown plum lipstick was launched in 2000 / VIVA GLAM IV / a heartful rose charged with gold / was introduced in March 2002 / In March 2004 / Viva Glam V makes its debut / a clear / smooth / pure neutral pink with a delicious Lustre finish! VIVA GLAM VI / the newest member of the VIVA GLAM family / is a warm terracotta-plum with pearl finish / Wear it alone or finish it off with a coordinating coat of VIVA GLAM VI Lipglass / For each sale of MAC Viva Glam Lipstick and Lipglass / the full RRP (less VAT) goes towards helping women / men and kids everywhere affected by HIV and Aids.