There’s something incredibly satisfying about a MAC store. Unlike other beauty departments, where different brands compete for shelf space, the entire store is devoted to MAC products in their sleek packaging. All their packaging goes together, so there’s a satisfying sameness about it all, the way they go together so nicely in your make-up bag – that is, until you get to all the shades and begin truly playing around with them, which is what make-up is all about. Just don’t bother trying to track down an employee to help you find a particular shade, or you’ll be there for hours – but that’s a whole different story.
However, any woman who has been inside MAC a time or two knows that there are certain women you’ll see time and time again. It may not be the same woman each time, but it will be a certain type that you just can’t stop seeing once you start thinking about it. In fact, trying to identify these women amongst your fellow shoppers is almost as fun as swatching the latest crazy shades. Make-up is an individual thing, and different people gravitate towards different things – which is totally fine. One person’s trash is another person’s favourite shade in the entire world, right?
Here are 15 types of women you’ll meet at MAC.
15. The woman who wants to be a YouTube beauty guru
You first notice her because her make-up is so, so on point. The eyebrows are absolutely flawless, the shadow is blended to perfection, she has lashes for days, and everything just looks insane. And then, when you walk past her, you hear her softly whispering “this next look is using all MAC products, and I’m starting with a clean, primed face.” She spends at least an hour a day watching YouTube beauty gurus and telling herself that she could do it – no, she should do it. She hasn’t yet, but she totally could. She talks to her mirror about her “look” as she does her make-up every morning, as if she has already amassed an audience of a million. She wants to be the next beauty superstar so badly. She wants her name on a special edition make-up palette. It’s so close she can taste it, but all she can do is keep practicing her winged liner over and over again.
14. The woman there to swap her empties for the first time
As just about anyone who has ever shopped at MAC knows, they have a program where you can swap your empty products for something new once you’ve amassed a certain amount of empties. For veterans, they march on in with a bag full of empties and proceed with confidence. The first time you ever do it, though, it can be a little intimidating. After all, you’re walking into a store with a collection of empty lipstick tubes and palettes in your purse – not exactly glamorous. There are so many people around and she’s just not sure where to go. Can you swap it for anything? Are there rules? A friend tried to tell her about how the system all works but frankly she’s forgotten, and is debating whether or not to just turn around and walk back out. I mean, sure, a free lipstick would be amazing, but is it worth all this stress? What this woman wants is a stiff drink, forget the highlighter.
13. The newbie
You spot her standing in front of a wall of foundation, desperately hoping someone comes over and offers to match her, because she has absolutely no clue which shade she is. Then, she wanders over to the eye shadows, and starts swatching things on the back of her hand, contemplating. She might even stop by the contouring products because she’s heard they’re amazing and she wants to have cheekbones like Kim Kardashian’s, but honestly, they just look like different shades of brown and she can’t figure out which would work for her. She desperately wants an employee to come up and just drop four or five products into her hands that would work perfectly for her, but alas – there are no employees to be found. She ends up leaving with a shade of lipstick she’ll never wear because it’s way too bold, a bottle of foundation that is about four shades too dark, as she finds out when she applies it at home later, and a tube of mascara. She’ll use the mascara, at least.
12. The boho crusader
Look, everyone has different tolerances when it comes to make-up – some ladies love to play with a full face, while others prefer a lighter look incorporating far fewer products. And whatever you love, you should rock, because make-up is all about making yourself feel great. This woman is in there to make sure that no one feels good about their chemical-packed choices. She came with a friend, she explains, and no she would not like to sample that foundation because she only wears all natural, mineral make-up. She wouldn’t dare look at a tube of that mascara – she tints her eyelashes with carbon. And forget about anything that has a scent – you may as well just douse yourself in chemicals, right? Honestly, while there’s absolutely nothing wrong with making sure the products you use are high quality, and while chemicals are definitely something you should look into for a product you’re using on your face, let’s be serious – this girl is a buzz kill and her friend regrets bringing her in.
11. The colour queen
The vast majority of women who wear make-up tend to stick to fairly neutral shades – bronzes and beiges and greys for the eyes, a soft pink for an everyday lip or maybe a bold red lip. The basics. This woman is not about that. She is the answer to your question of “who on earth would buy a lime green lipstick?” She tosses the nudes and soft colors aside and heads straight for the violently blue eyeshadow, she tosses glitter liner in her bag like it’s going out of style. You had no idea someone could wear so many colours on the same face. She spent way too long working on perfecting the unicorn shadow/liner look, so you’d better believe she wants you to notice the colorful masterpiece she has going on. Artists painting on canvas don’t limit themselves to shades of beige, so why on earth would she do that when it comes to her make-up?
10. The Kim Kardashian wannabe
To this woman, Kim Kardashian is like Regina George. Kim Kardashian started rocking a nude lip on the regular, so she bought every nude shade that MAC had. Kim Kardashian dyed her hair blonde, so she had to swap out her dark brow pencils for light brown brow pencils to match her newly dyed hair. This woman is buying more contouring palettes than anyone could ever possibly use. She will give herself razor sharp cheekbones and perfect angles, no matter how many YouTube tutorials she has to watch, no matter how many Beauty Blenders she has to ruin. She eagerly awaits Kim K’s next statement about a particular product she loves, and then she’s all over that. She knows how to take the perfect selfie. She’s taking the perfect selfie right now, by the display of contouring palettes. She owns Kim’s selfie book. She just put another contouring palette in her basket. Somebody please stop her.
9. The layer cake
Look, if you’re the type of person who would rather go for all out glam, the type of person who just doesn’t dig the whole “barely there” look, that’s totally fine. However, there are limits, even to excess. Every girl has seen this woman at MAC – the one who seems to be wearing six sets of false lashes and twenty seven layers of foundation. She doesn’t blend her shadow colours – she just layers them, one on top of the other, like colourful little blankets suffocating her eyelids. She surveys her look every morning in the mirror and then puts a whole new look on top, just for fun. You have to physically restrain yourself from getting a make-up wipe from one of the MAC employees and just scrubbing and scrubbing her face because that’s just way, way too much product for any one woman to handle. You weep for her pores.
8. The teen make-up artist
It’s no secret that women are getting into make-up younger and younger these days. Perhaps it’s the rise of social media or younger starlets like Kylie Jenner, but whatever the cause, tweens are now becoming master blenders and contour queens at an age where previously they didn’t wear anything but lip balm. It’s no longer just the products marketed towards younger buyers that they’re picking up – they go straight for the good stuff, thanks to a generous allowance or part-time job. The Teen is either there with a group of friends, squealing and comparing swatches, or with her mother. She’s making her case about how without that particular setting powder, she’s just not going to look good in her school pictures. She’s convincing her mother that the foundation she’s holding is so natural, it’s like not even wearing foundation at all. She is way too young to be wearing so much make-up, yet you’re kind of jealous because she’s already better at applying it than you are.
7. The employee who’s just there for the discount
Every woman knows that MAC workers aren’t always the best when it comes to customer service – sure, their brows are on point, but when you desperately need them to check the back for a shade you need, they’re often nowhere to be found. Well, there’s a regular MAC worker, and then there’s this woman. She is literally 100% there in order to get a discount and try out new products for herself. If you try to wave her over, she heads in the opposite direction so quickly you fear her falsies will flutter off. She’s always telling people that she’s with another customer and will be right back, yet the “other customer” seems to be a mythic invention. She’s all about the perks and not so much about the actual work. Just don’t even try – you’re better off asking another customer for her opinion than trying to track down this woman to match your foundation.
6. The encyclopedia
The thing that differentiates MAC from Sephora, the other huge make-up giant, is that MAC carries, well, MAC products. Seems simple enough, right? However, it means you’ll sometimes run across a type of woman you would never encounter at a Sephora – the encyclopedia. She can list every lipstick shade in the display case, left to right, right to left, top to bottom. She knows the subtle differences in shadow shades. She can tell you the name of any special edition product MAC has released in the past five years. You would assume she has all this knowledge because she worked at MAC once upon a time, but nope – she’s just a true blue devotee. This is a woman who has travel-sized versions of all her favourite products for just in case. She remembers the exact date her favourite shade of something was discontinued, but don’t worry – she also has three great dupes memorized, so it’s fine.
5. The single product obsessive
Even if they come in for just one product that they’re actually out of, most women will stop to swatch a few things, to check out some new products that have hit the shelves since the last time they’ve been in, etc. After all, if you’re already there, why not, right? Not this woman. This woman marches right past the foundation, she doesn’t bat an eyelash at the endless colourful pops of shadow in the palettes, she doesn’t care how amazing that primer is or how it’s changed your life. She is there for one tube of Ruby Woo, and that is it. Don’t even try to sell her on anything else. She’s just here for that one particular thing, will head right over to the cash register to pay, and head right back out. Don’t mess around with her – she doesn’t have time for that. She’s slicking on another layer of her favourite colour like battle armour and she’s ready to tackle her day.
4. The Rockefeller
It’s tough to judge big spenders at make-up stores because you never know who is just a regular person and who might actually be a make-up artist looking to restock a little bit, or test out a few new products. However, this woman is excessive by anyone’s standards. She straight up just put 50 tubes of lipstick in her already overflowing bag and is eyeing up the palettes, and you’re so distracted by the mental tally you’re keeping that you forgot what you were looking at in the first place. She is there to spend every last dime she has. Her monthly make-up payment is the same as some people’s mortgage payments. The vanity where she gets ready looks like a mini MAC store, except that it has all the same products as a full-sized MAC store, carefully stored away and organized. She literally owns everything already so why is she even here?
3. The sampler
Look, sometimes you just want to sample something and see how it works on your face before you actually commit to spending your hard-earned dollars on it. We get that. That’s why sampling at beauty stores is a thing – you need to be able to see how a product works with your unique skin tone or face shape. However, this woman takes things to an entirely different level. She essentially puts on a full face of make-up in the form of samples, and has perfected the promising phrases. She’ll totally buy the lip liner next time she’s here. She keeps meaning to get a new bottle of foundation, and this is totally the one she’ll switch to next time because it’s such a great match. She wasn’t sure if she could rock a magenta lip but this colour is gorgeous, the thing is though, she just bought a fresh tube of Ruby Woo last week so she’ll probably get this colour the next time. She is literally never going to buy the full product.
2. The employee who dreams of make-over montages
There’s no doubt that everyone working at MAC loves make-up – after all, they have to be make-up artists to work there. If you’re just looking to get into retail, there are a thousand other stores you could go to where the training wasn’t as rigorous. However, while all of the staff like to experiment with products and craft new looks, this one is a step above the rest. She has watched the make-over montage in every movie over and over again. She only watches the makeover episode of every season of America’s Next Top Model. She has a playlist of songs that she listens to on the way in to work while she envisions a day filled with picture perfect make-overs. No matter what your look is when you come in those doors, she knows exactly what she would do to create the most jaw-dropping transformation. She wants to transform you so, so badly. It’s all she wants in this entire world. Please.
1. The special edition fan
Over the years, MAC has collaborated with many, many celebrities, from pop stars to actresses to fashion designers. Some special edition collections have received a ton of praise, others receive mixed reviews, but all MAC devotees keep an eye out for each new release to see if there’s anything that looks promising. The special edition fan takes things to an entirely different level. If a special edition collection comes out, she will buy every single item in the range. It doesn’t matter that she would literally never wear a bold lip – she’s buying the neon green Trolls edition lipstick. She doesn’t know why. She almost never wears any of the special edition items she buys, but there’s just something about the limited edition nature that gets her all crazy. She basically uses the same four products every day, yet has a drawer full of crazy special edition shades with bold packaging and flirty names.