MAC Gold-Go-Lightly Studio Careblend Pressed Powder: As Contouring Powder, Blush, And Eyeshadow


Every time MAC rolls out their weekly limited edition collection, I’ll roll my eyes too. @_@

Established beauty bloggers can receive the whole suite of products from the collection and will give details on the eyeshadows, lipsticks, lipglosses, powder, prices, DA-BER-DEE-DA, and I usually don’t give a hoot about their loot.

I mean, how many of us, with regular, fixed income, have the financial ability to fork out so much money for one collection? And it’s not like each collection has very unique products to die for. More often than not, the eyeshadow colors repeat or are just slightly darker, slightly lighter and really don’t make a BIG DIFFERENCE on the eyes once you mix them with other colors and blend them out. =(

It is also because of the fact that MAC Singapore prices its products at least S$10 more expensive than in the US (#109 Small Contour Brush costs S$20 more here! Ugh!) that I rarely find myself casually browsing the black MAC shelves. I enter a MAC shop with a mission – to swatch a color, see a brush, or ask for a specific product. Then I buy online. LOL.

So it was one of those mission-filled days that I stepped in and asked the MUA for a contouring powder shade for my NC20-25 skin undertone. I’ve read on countless blogs that MAC Emote blush is the best color for contouring but it was discontinued long ago much to the utter dismay of thousands of fans around the world. It was kinda substituted by Harmony. A well-known dupe for Emote is NYX blush in Taupe but Taupe looks disgustingly muddy on me so I use it as an eyebrow powder sometimes instead.

At that time, the MAC Surf Baby Collection was nearing its end and a lot of the samples had ‘SOLD OUT’ stickers plastered across. I didn’t think much of the collection, as usual, but the MUA recommended Gold-Go-Lightly, swatched it on my hand and told me it suits me to a T.

The other Studio Careblend Pressed Powder in Lush-Light Bronze is too dark for my NC20-25 skin undertone.

After thinking about for a night (Yup! Not an impulse purchase, this one!), I went out to buy it the next evening. Cost me S$48.00. OUCH.


I’m not crazy about the whole off-white background Hawaii-inspired surfboard look. To me it looks kinda tacky. The eyeshadow pots look the worst coz instead of the usual classy black that they come in, they’re replaced with off-white.


Gold-Go-Lightly is perfect for people with warm skin undertones or who aim to achieve a warmer one. It is a warm medium-dark golden brown that works for light to medium complexions. It is just right for my NC20-25 skin.

Works lovely as a contour or blush powder for golden-toned Asians, giving that natural, healthy-looking glow. Gimme the sunkissed look! MUACK!


I like that the Careblend Pressed Powder feels creamy to the touch. Feels really good to swipe it with the fingers! So smooth and velvety, no wonder it glides effortlessly onto the skin without looking dry or chalky.

Layering is definitely a breeze with Gold-Go-Lightly, and also probably with all the Careblend Pressed Powders, I’ve heard.

True to its name, the MAC Gold-Go-Lightly Studio Careblend Pressed Powder is very well pressed and does not create a mess like the MAC Studio Fix Powder Plus Foundation does when I swirl a brush in the pan.

Gold-Go-Lightly As An Eyeshadow On The Contour Area

I love pairing Gold-Go-Lightly on the contour area with blue or purple on the lids. The warm brown complements these colors beautifully. The near matte finish of Gold-Go-Lightly is also perfect as a transition color at the eye contour area before hitting the browbone highlight color.

Gold-Go-Lightly As A Face Contouring Powder

I have been using Gold-Go-Lightly every day ever since to create contours on my face. There was a little getting used to at first because I’ve never successfully managed contouring without looking like I have a beard with NYX Taupe. =(

Contouring is essentially the emulation of shadows on the face, with usually a shade or two darker than the skin tone. But I have non-existent cheekbones and it was very hard to contour because I had NO IDEA where to place the contouring powder. I tell you, with the ‘fish face’ or ‘pout+smile face’ or however much I suck in my cheeks, I still cannot see any shadows on my cheeks.

I have a flat face. X’(

I’m getting better at it though.

I just have to feel the (arbitrary) hollows on the cheeks and very carefully apply the powder, unlike people with nice cheekbones who can simply do the ‘fish face’ and draw on the pronounced lines.

So now I have an extra step added to my daily makeup routine, but I’m not complaining! I find that without a contouring powder to shade, my skin looks flatter with only foundation and blusher.

I like that the contouring shade is very subtle. I don’t have a sharp face structure with distinct cheekbones so a shade too dark will look harsh on me. I hope you can see the layering of contour powder, blush, and highlight to make my face look less flat.

Just in case you might wanna know, this look was created with eyeshadows from Stage Cosmetics, MAC and Urban Decay. I will do a tutorial on this colorful look soon!

On another day of less dramatic eye makeup, you can see the subtle contouring of the hollows of the cheeks.

For creating a more chiseled look the MAC #168 Large Angled Contour Brush is a little too big and fluffy to apply Gold-Go-Lightly with on my small face.

The MAC #188 Small Duo Fibre Face Brush is the right size but I don’t like to have to clean the brown contouring powder off before applying highlighting powder. Matte brown powder mixed with champagne shimmer on the top of my cheeks = EWW.

So… I ordered the MAC #109 Small Contour Brush! I’ve read many good reviews about it and some even say it’s an un-dupable face contouring brush. Woot!

Get the MAC Gold-Go-Lightly Studio Careblend Pressed Powder

Do you contour your face? Any special techniques to share?

Any good contouring brush to recommend? I need! =)


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About Bun Bun

Hello! My name is Juli and Bun Bun is my alter-ego. I blog to share my love for makeup, how to apply it, and what works or what doesn’t work, all from an Asian perspective.

My first makeup product was a shimmery light blue lipstick which I proudly wore all over my eyelids and lips. It cost $2.50, felt like $250, and made me feel like a million bucks.

Throughout this blog you will see Bun Bun in different poses.

Instead of using numbers (3/5, 4/5) or alphabets (B+, A+) to rate products, I put Bun Bun in different positions and expressions to represent the rating given to the product after a review.

In Bun-O-Meter, the first on the list would mean a 5/5 rating and the last one a 1/5 rating.

You can always refer to the sidebar any time you don’t understand what Bun Bun’s pose means.

I hope you enjoy reading my makeup and beauty posts as much as I did writing them.

Talk to you soon! =)


Juli & Bun Bun

  • a!k0

    The color is pretty nice, referring to the swatch.. I love both your looks, the colorful one is nice and I love your top in the second picture! 😀 Honestly I do not know how to contour…it is really sad. I need to practice.. I try to steer away from the MAC counter too, the prices are too much, altho I am tempted to get a blush from MAC. I think this product suit you well. And I can’t wait for a tutorial, yay!


    • Bun Bun

      YAR! Very expensive! X( But they really do make some nice products… haha.

      Which blush are you looking at? My favorite blush from MAC is Pink Swoon. It is a very pretty pink that blends beautifully and looks natural. I love pink flushed cheeks! =D How about you?

      • a!kO

        YES I know its expensive thats why I have stayed a good distance away. Since I don’t wear eye make up very much I think if I do decide to get a MAC product (I think I will wait till I get to the states :P) I might get a blush from them :) At least I can say, hey I have something from MAC 😛 Too bad I couldn’t get blushes from the Stage sale, they were out! Was so disappointed, lol.

        Oh I have seen pink swoon 😀 The color is very pretty. Lately i have been using a lot of pink blushers…I like the way it looks 😀 I usually go for like rose colored ones, mmm those deep pinks…I totally forgot the word for that 😛 and corals.

        • Bun Bun

          Pink Swoon was my very first MAC blush (and very first MAC product too) and coincidentally the reason I got it was the same as yours – the “I have something from MAC” thought! LOL.

  • Mia

    I mean, how many of us, with regular, fixed income, have the financial ability to fork out so much money for one collection?

    I had to laugh at this part, it’s so true!

    I live in the Philippines and I have to deal with quite a bit of additional pricing too. Then I saw how much makeup cost in Australia and I stopped feeling sorry for myself. Erk.

    Anyway, that’s a very pretty color! I like how subtle it is for contouring. It looks very nice on you, so natural!

    • Bun Bun

      Hey Mia!

      Yea I think prices are just crazy anywhere outside of the US. Boooo….. I wonder how those bloggers who receive the full suite of collections store all their products. It’s impossible to go through all of them in one lifetime!

      Thanks for taking the time to comment! See you around! =D

  • Blur Kat

    Hi Bun Bun!
    I trying to get a loose powder that is good for oily face.. I.e. gives a matt finish that can last for hopefully 5 hours or more.. And given a budget, I was wondering if you can recommend me a few choices of brands?
    I’ve done some research and saw these 3 seems not bad: Lancome Poudre Majeur Execellence loose powder, Shiseido Makeup enriched loose powder, And lastly is the Clinique blended face powder.. Do you have any comments on these products and/or have recommendations on otherS? Thanks!

    • Bun Bun

      Hi Blur Kat,

      I can see that your budget is quite high – Lancome, Shiseido and Clinique… Haha…

      Unfortunately, I haven’t tried loose powder from any of these brands. I have NARS Loose Powder in Flesh, which I do use sometimes, and one from e.l.f, which I don’t really touch because it is not as finely milled.

      However recently I find myself reaching for compact powders as a setting powder because compacts are just so much tidier. And definitely more travel-friendly too! The compact powder I am currently indulging in is MAC Studio Fix Foundation, and in NC 25. I love the Studio Fix because it gives a matte finish and works to keep shine off my face for a longer period of time. I always use that to set my foundation when I go for Salsa classes. Haha!

      If you really want to try any of the 3 you listed, it is best to make a trip down to cosmetics counters and make swatches to find the right shade. NARS is not available in Singapore, btw.

      Good luck!

      • Blue Kat

        Thanks bunbun! actually I dunnoe what color suits me given that i very seldom purchase these things.. so I always take what the MUA says and I can’t really tell the difference in the shades when they apply at my jaw area too.. lols!

        • Bun Bun

          Tell you what. It’s time to go makeup shopping with me! Hahaha! XD

          Eh but I thought your sister is an aspiring makeup artist? She must have a tonne of products at home. You have a wealth of resources lying at home! Try them out!!

          • Blur Kat

            hahas my sis suggested that I use yellow base but I only know her opinion after I bought my pink base liquid foundation based on what the MUA recommended me! lols.. didn’t thot of asking her prior to that..
            But anw, a typical MUA’s various shades foundation is bought from probably their school and I’m not comfortable with buying those for everyday usage as I’ve sensitive skin. I would prefer investing in good brands to use them more often.. And different brands have different range of shades too? So I can’t get an exact shade answer unless she happen to have used that product too. =/
            But anw sis has bought many many brands of products for her own use but those shades are suited for her skin tone which is much fairer than me.. So I can’t really try her products =(
            Yea we can go shopping 1 day.. My sis is too busy with her wedding now! But I’m pretty busy till end of next week n I need my products by next week to attend dinners! boohoo sians