MAC Studio Tech Foundation Review

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MAC Studio Tech Foundation

I’ve had my MAC Studio Tech Foundation for a while, but haven’t reviewed it until now. The reason is that I was still trying all sorts of application methods with it. This is my first MAC foundation purchase after I have stopped buying any of their foundations years ago. This is also the first time that I’ve bought a cream foundation from MAC. I have only tried their liquid and powder foundations before. I liked the finish of some of them, but one thing they have in common: they all caused my face to breakout.

It was my favorite makeup artist at MAC who recommended that I try this foundation. She said that it has a nice, matte finish and that it’s really good for oily skin. So I thought, why not? This might be the time that I should give MAC foundations another try. So I ended up buying Studio Tech in shade NC20 which she matched to my neck area.

What MAC says about Studio Tech Foundation:

A tri-system blend of water, emollients and powder glides on as a soft, creamy emulsion. Innovative formula provides a full range of coverage, allowing for true-to-skin shading from very light to very dark in a natural matte, powder-perfect finish. Light-diffusing properties soften lines to create a fresh, flawless finish for all skin types.


MAC Studio Tech Foundation

I bought MAC Studio Tech in the shade NC20 which has a yellow undertone. It’s not overly yellow, so it really matches my skin. It didn’t oxidize on me, so it was a good thing that I got the shade which really matched my face color. I didn’t want to have the tester applied on my face, so I just shade-matched it on my neck area and also tried on my arm. It blended out pretty well, so I got convinced. But I forgot how different the skin texture on my arm is, compared to my face which is more oily and has bigger pores. 🙁

MAC Studio Tech Foundation Swatches

In the arm swatch above, you can see how it blended out pretty well. It’s not too creamy nor too powdery. It sets on the skin and and has a beautiful matte finish that doesn’t look too flat. It takes just a small amount of Studio Tech foundation to achieve a light coverage. When applied lightly, I still had to use a separate concealer for my blemishes and dark spots. But this foundation is buildable if medium to full-coverage is desired. Personally, though, I don’t like layering this foundation on my face. It gets really patchy, cakey, slides around and separates. Practically everything that I avoid with any foundation, this one gives me.

MAC Studio Tech Foundation

This is a compact foundation which comes with a sponge. I would really like to use the sponge especially when I’m hurriedly applying my makeup. But I don’t really like how it looks on me when applied using the sponge. It was the MAC makeup artist at Mall of Asia who had recommended that I use the sponge that came with Studio Tech for the best application. However, I found that the best way to apply it on my skin is by using a brush instead. I take a small amount of the foundation using a spatula (like the ones that come with night creams) and place it on the back of my hand. Then, using a buffing brush or the Real Techniques Expert Face brush, I dab it lightly in there and apply to my face starting from the T-zone and moving outwards using circular, buffing motion.

MAC Studio Tech Foundation

It has no SPF (sun protection) at all, so it wouldn’t be a good choice for a daytime makeup look. So I have no choice but to use it for an evening look. Because it doesn’t have SPF, it doesn’t have a whitecast, so I don’t look ashy and ghostly in photos, so it’s a plus for MAC Studio Tech. Another plus is that it feels really light on my skin, probably because it’s water-based. However, that’s where the Pros of this foundation end. Well, at least for me. I feel that this might work better on those with drier skin than mine. It’s like my skin’s natural oil and this water-based foundation are battling each other on my face every time I wear it. Lol!

MAC Studio Tech Foundation Swatches

Color and texture comparison from L to R: MAC Studio Tech Foundation in NC20, Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse in Nude Light 4 and Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse blended out.

I know that I had been mismatched with the Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse foundation, but I feel that it is better for my skin than Studio Tech. After using this MAC foundation for a few hours, few pimples start appearing on my face. Which I already expected, but I was still hoping that this one will be different than the others I’ve tried before.

If I build it up for a medium to full coverage, MAC Studio Tech gets cakey and patchy. It doesn’t set at all, and even slides around on my oily areas. It also accentuates the dry patches on my right cheek. I feel that Studio Tech was not made for my skin which is combination oily/normal with bits of dry areas. It doesn’t really control oiliness because after just around 2 hours, my face is a mess.

I have tried applying it over just my cleansed and moisturized skin, then with a primer underneath, and also tried it over my bare skin. But all failed me.

I bought MAC Studio Tech for Php2,100 from the MAC store in Mall Of Asia.

MAC Studio Tech Foundation
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Have you tried any of MAC foundations? Which works best on your skin? How about MAC Studio Tech foundation? Did it work for your skin?

Alyssa Melanie



  1. I love MAC Studio fix fluid liquid foundation I love it because it doesnt caused me breakouts and it has SPF 15 . I am using that occasionally because its expensive haha..
    For everyday I usually used 4u2 foundation it also matte finish good quality but not that expensive

  2. Soultana Karamani on

    I havent try any mac’s product beside lipsticks,so,i cant say my opinion,but my skin is oil too and i kinda have a serious problem when im going to buy a foundation for my skin,a good one,which im using now is Dermablend from Vichy and i dont have any problem,it stays up to 5 hours,even when i sweat and it too light.

  3. Christy Peeples DuBois on

    I am glad I came across this review. I have been looking for a foundation that works well with my very oily skin and haven’t been successful yet. My daughter bought the Maybelline Dream Smooth Mouse and didn’t like it at all so I tried it and didn’t like it either. It didn’t help with my oiliness at all and I could feel it on my face which I didn’t like. Now though I won’t waste my money on this MAC foundation because from your review I don’t think it will work with my skin. Thanks so much for your review.

    • Hi Christy! You might want to try Make Up For Ever HD Invisible Cover foundation instead. It’s really great on my combination skin and I haven’t had any problems with it. I’ve reviewed it a couple of days back. If you want to check my review, you can use the search function found on the upper right portion of this blog. Or for mobile, it’s on the upper left. xoxo

  4. bilqees bano on

    I love Mac products ..I have its lipstick & nail polish ..& your review makes me hungry to buy its other products 🙂

    • Hi Bilqees! I haven’t tried their nail polishes, but I would love to try it one of these days. On the other hand, I’ve been a big fan of their lipsticks ever since I bought my first ever MAC lipstick a few years ago. I also want to buy more MAC products! I’ll check Nordstrom later today. 😀

  5. Sayang this didn’t work, sa swatch kapit na kapit sya sa skin. I thought magiging ok sya. Have you tried the pro compact foundation. I want to try that. I love cream compacts.

    • I know, right? I haven’t tried the Pro compact. I bought a couple of foundations to try, but didn’t bother buying one from MAC anymore. In a couple of months, probably, I might try a MAC foundie again. But for now, I’ll just stick with their other makeup. 😀

  6. I love Mac foundation! Thank you for this review.
    The only Mac foundation I’ve tried is the the Pro Longwear.

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