Dear Carissa- What’s the Deal With M.A.C Studio Fix??

From a reader last week asking the a question I get a lot.

Hi Carissa,

I love your blog! I have a question about foundations. I’ve been
using MAC Studio Fix Powder for many years and now I want to try something
new (esp. since many make-up artists don’t seem to recommend it for
whatever reason). What is your take on MAC studio fix?

I’m looking for something that is quick to apply and will provide a
matte finish for my oily skin.


Hi Betty,

Ok, here’s a painful and embarrassing admission. I once lived for Studio Fix. No, like seriously lived for it. I had one at home and one in my purse at all times and touched up constantly. Every time I would buy a new one, I would be color matched to something different and just went with it even when I looked a little orange. I can now, with 100% certainty, look back on photos and tell you when I was wearing Studio Fix and when I wasn’t.

I can’t speak for other artists (although I know it isn’t something they use) but I’m not a fan because It’s heavy, chalky, matte, and unflattering on 99% of the women who wear it. I liked it though for the same reasons you do- it’s easy to apply with tons of coverage that matted out my oily skin.

Then, one day the clouds parted and I saw the light. I no longer wished to look like Elvira mistress of M.A.C, I would *gasp* let my actual skin show through. You too, Betty, can make that change.

But it’s not easy.

See, you’re unconsciously addicted to seeing the actual makeup and not your skin, so when you’re using something that just boosts the look of your skin and lightly conceals redness, you probably won’t like it. Just know that from now. Look at old photos, are there any where your face appears mime-white from the talc-tastic formula? Let those be your inspiration.

Do what I did, move on to Stila’s Illuminating Powder Foundation. It’s much lighter in weight, gives your skin a beautiful luminosity, and some natural looking coverage.

Just know that you don’t want to replace Studio Fix, you want to rehab from it. It won’t be the same, but it will be better.



Stumble It!


  1. Anonymous says:

    I agree… Don't like any MAC powders or foundations bc it just does not work w my skin. I do like their concealors though. However , stilas illuminating powder foundation is the best powder I have ever used. I've used it for almost 10 years now… I keep buying other powders but always come back to stila. It's light, with medium coverage and gives my skin a glow, very youthful….

  2. mineral makeup says:

    Good that you have your perfect one…it is hard to choose on a good and correct foundation for yourself….which will suit the skin tone and the type of skin also.

  3. I couldn't agree more, Studio Fix Powder is the worst foundation. When I used it, it made little bumps all over my face that didn't go away until I stopped using it. It make me look really matte and weird in pictures. I thought it was so great because of the coverage but I had no idea how bad I looked. It's also not good for older skin because it's so heavy it settles into wrinkles.

  4. Stephanie says:

    Personally, I love Studio Fix and think it's the best powder foundation I've ever used. I don't get a chalky result and the shade I use matches my skin tone perfectly. I like to apply it with this cool HD brush I bought at Sephora and it goes on like a dream.

    However, you're NOT supposed to use it for touch ups as if it were a regular powder, it's much too heavy for that. Use a matching pressed powder instead and I bet you won't get that heavy, chalky feeling you described.

    Another good option is Clinique's Perfectly Real pressed powder foundation.

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