Product Rave: MAC Ruby Woo

Note: I’m sorry for the lack of posts, I’ve been sick, and haven’t felt like putting anything on my face. =( I do miss blogging though, so I wrote this. 

Today I want to share with you one of the many reds I own.

MAC Ruby Woo, which is almost like a cult favourite from the brand.

MAC Ruby Woo

Ruby Woo is part of MAC’s permanent range. It is a blue-based red with matte finish that is pigmented in one swipe, and can be built up to a more intense colour. Like all MAC lipsticks, it is vanilla scented. 

Blue based reds are the most flattering shades of red there are on the market. They suit most people, and are flattering since they make your teeth look whiter. (For more info check out my post on different shades of red here.)

Note that Ruby Woo has a matte finish, which distinguishes it from most other reds out there on the market, which tend to have a glossy or satin finish. Matte reds are great for formal events, they just look a lot more classy. I think this is because they’re associated with old school Hollywood images.

Below are some photos comparing Ruby Woo with other reds.


I applied MAC Ruby Woo on my friend for a formal dinner.



Me wearing MAC Ruby Woo. I think this was only one layer on, I didn’t layer it multiple times or anything like that.


Myself wearing MAC Ruby Woo on top of Jordona lip pencil in Sedona Red.


I was wearing Korres Lip Butter in Wild Rose, with Bobbi Brown Pot Rogue in Raspberry layered over, which created a deep glossy berry red.


Jordona lip pencil in Sedona Red. This is actually more like an orange red, but looks like a blue red in the lighting.

The huge downside to this formula is that it is extremely drying. If applied straight to the lips, you will find them cracking and peeling within hours. The texture of the lipstick will of course, emphasise any peeling there was to begin with. You must prime your lips (exfoliate and moisturise) before applying. Also, because the formula is so drying, I find it tugs on the lips, and so I prefer to apply it with a lip brush rather than directly from the tube.

However, precisely because it’s such a drying formula, the pigment tends to cling to the lips. This means that it lasts longer than creamier lipsticks with more slip, though these glide on the lips better.

A few years ago, I’d still have recommended this lipstick despite the downsides. However, with the release of more moisturising matte lipsticks from other companies, like Burberry’s Lip Velvets (matte, long wearing and moisturising) and Bobbi Brown’s Creamy Matte Lip Color (which is a lot cheaper than Burberry’s, moisturising and easy to apply on the lips, and comes in a huge range of beautiful colours), there is no excuse for MAC to continue their crappy drying matte formula (and rereleasing it with MAC RiRiWoo? Shame on you MAC).

Note: The Maybelline Bold Matte line has been gaining a lot of attention, but from what I’ve seen of the swatches online, the aren’t really matte, but has satin finishes. There are ways to get a matte finish for your lipstick, but that’s for another post.

However! I still will continue to use my Ruby Woo, even with better alternatives out there. It still remains a beautiful colour, and as long as you’ve prepped your lips, it isn’t too difficult to apply, even directly from the tube. This lasts about six hours (or more, with a lingering stain until even the eighth hour) on me, even with meals and drinking plenty of water between, which makes it a great lipstick for dinners and such.

Cost: SGD30 (USD15)
Does it work: It’s a deep blue-based red that has a matte finish. However, the formula is extremely drying.
Would I recommend it: Yes and no. It’s still cheaper than the other matte alternatives (from Burberry and Bobbi Brown), but the drying formula would be a complete turn off to lots of people. However, I find it still very usable (and incredibly long-wearing) so long as I’ve primed my lips.

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14 Responses to Product Rave: MAC Ruby Woo

  1. Amria says:

    I looove it on you 🙂

  2. Awww I am sending you loads of positive energy so you feel better. Love Ruby Woo on you! I went to the MAC counter to pick one up but it was out of stock 😦
    I got the Everyday Diva instead coz I cannot live without a red lipstick in my purse xx

  3. Carina says:

    Looks so good on you, though! If I’m not mistaken Ruby Woo has a retro matte formula, right? I think those are decidedly old-formula mattes, aka really drying.

    • natziwang says:

      Yes exactly. But that they relaunched exactly the same thing for RiRiWoo is just lazy to me, they could have improved on the formula a lazy.

      • estycare says:

        It looks gorgeous on you!
        Supposedly Riri Woo has a slightly improved formula… I ordered it so we’ll find out!

      • natziwang says:

        Can’t wait to see your review!

      • Carina says:

        I getcha. I love the matte-ness of Mehr. I noticed though that they finally made the distinction between mattes and Retro mattes (the RiRi ♥ MAC lipsticks explicitly say Retro matte). It seems like their reds are the victims of the dry matte formula 😦

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