MAC Amber Times Nine Eyeshadow Palette

I’d like to introduce you to the newest member of my palette collection…introducing the Mac Amber Times Nine!  I picked this little palette up at Winners of all places and I scored a great deal on it – it was only $23 (marked down from $29.99).  Considering this palette runs for $42 CAD on Mac’s website, it’s not one I could pass up.  Especially since I’m one of the rare few that has never tried Mac eyeshadow before.  The reason why?  I hate makeup counters and I avoid them like the plague.  I just want to pick up what I want and not have anyone bother me – which is why I buy most of my cosmetics at Sephora and the drugstore.


Mac describes this as a well-edited palette that features a colour wave of amber hues that offer countless shade combinations and a variety of textures (matte, satin, frost) and the ability to create looks for both day and night.


$42 CAD; 9 x 0.02 oz shadows

Here’s how it compares to other palettes of a similar size/weight:

  • Tartelette Tease – $30 CAD; 6 x 0.03 oz shadows
  • Urban Decay Naked Basics – $36 CAD; 6 x 0.05 oz shadows
  • Smashbox Full Exposure Travel Palette – $29 CAD; 8 x 0.026 oz shadows
  • Viseart Petit PRO Eyeshadow Palette – $40 CAD;  8 x 0.026 oz shadows


This palette is made of a black plastic and has a clear lid with a magnetized closure.  For some reason I enjoy a clear lid on a palette – I like seeing the shadows contained in it I guess.  I find the packaging quite sturdy and compact, which I love because that makes it ideal for travel.


None of these shadows had any noticeable scent.


  • Made in Canada
  • Dermatologist tested
  • Ophthalmologist tested
  • Non-acnegenic
  • Safe for contact-wearers
  • Can be used wet or dry


Note: I’ve used the descriptions of the shades from Mac’s websites and added any of my comments in brackets

Cozy Grey: Matte cool grey (with the slightest hint of lilac)

Kitties: Frosted pale bronze

Georgia Peach: Matte dirty rose pink

Ricepaper: Frosted peachy gold with glitter (this actually leans more of a shimmery white on my skintone)

Creative Copper: Lustre light beige

Cork: Satin muted golden brown

Don’t Tell: Luster sparkly brown (hint of rose gold)

Aromatic: Matte brown (dark brown)

Pepper, Please: Velvet sparkly bronze copper brown (I don’t know what velvet means but this is basically a matte with glitter)


Since trying my first Lorac palette last year, I can’t help but compare every eyeshadow to them; they encompass everything I want in an eyeshadow: soft, blendable, buttery, pigmented, and long-lasting.  So how do these compare?  They don’t honestly but the majority of the shadows are good and there are a couple of duds.  I found that the matte shadows (Cozy Grey, Georgia Peach, Aromatic) and Cork (described as a satin) perform the best – they were soft, with minimum fallout, pigmented and easy to blend.  Kitties, Creative Copper, and Don’t Tell also performed well, although Don’t Tell definitely feels drier and a little chunky in the pan (it does blend out well though).   Ricepaper is soft but lacks some pigmentation, while Pepper, Please is pretty dry and quite patchy.  On the bright side all of the shadows are pretty buildable but they do require some work for decent colour payoff.  Keep in mind that this is a neutral palette however, so it’s not intended to create bold eye looks.

I have zero complaints with the lasting power on these; as usual I paired them with my favourite eye primer (Too Faced’s Shadow Insurance) and they lasted all day and well into the night (8+ hours) with no creasing and minimal fading.

I have traveled with this palette over an extended long weekend and I found it worked really well for that purpose.  It was lightweight, compact and offered me enough the versatility I was looking for in terms of easy every day looks, with the option of doing a brown smoky eye if I felt like it.


While I don’t find this to be a bad palette by any means, I’m glad I only spent a little over half of what it retails for because I definitely don’t think it’s worth the regular price tag.  For a dollar less, you could pick up the Viseart Petit Pro palette!  That’s not to say I don’t enjoy this palette because I do – I think it’s a great little neutral palette that I will likely continue to travel with and use occasionally.  If you can get it for the discounted price like I did, I’d recommend it.

Tell me what other Mac eyeshadows I should try below!



  1. Belinda Laurie says

    Such a great review Nicole!! I’m surprised that the matte shadows are the ones that performed the best – most ‘so so’ palettes end up being the exact opposite. It’s too bad that the quality wasn’t great as this is something I’ve heard about these 9 pans. Glad I caught your review because it solidifies that I really don’t need these mini palettes (even though in theory they’d be something I’d love!)

    Ps. I LOVE shadow insurance, too!!! You’re my people lol


    • prettyrufflife says

      Yes Shadow Insurance is the best – nothing else works on my oily lids! 🙂

      It’s totally rare to have the matte shadows perform the best – it was a nice surprise for sure! I think I read on Temptalia that the purple-toned palette in this line was really good so that might be one to look into.

      Thanks for reading Belinda!

  2. Chris says

    I love MAC shadows but I have heard these little palettes are sometimes not great. Glad it worked out generally well because the colors are so perfect! LOVE Ricepaper.

    And aren’t LORAC shadows wonderful? I dread the day I hit pan on Unzipped. Why aren’t they sold in Canada?!

    • prettyrufflife says

      Yes Ricepaper is definitely a fave of mine from that palette too – such a great shade!

      Oooh you have the Unzipped palette? I almost picked that up, but I went for the Pro 3 palette instead. That’s probably going to be next on my list. They NEED to come to Canada! 🙂

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