You know- when the hype has died and you've had time to think about their absolute necessity factor. There seems to be quite a bit of Julia Petit stuff on the resale circuit so you can still pick something up.
Acai jumped onto my to-do list after I realised I'd gone through a whole MAC Rebel wishing the damn thing was matte. Are they dupes, strictly speaking? Yeah... sort of. There's a maybe 5% chromatic difference, with Rebel pulling a mite warmer to my eye, but that shade is just so fucking greasy and Acai is so well-behaved that they're quite different beasts in practise. Acai is an off-matte, far more pigmented, doesn't bleed or migrate like its slippy twin and keeps that wayward fuchsia-purple goodness firmly in its place. It's weird that MAC is only issuing a matte version of this massively popular shade as an LE; you'd think it would be an obvious candidate for permanent status. For shame!
Late to the party with these shades but I refuse to participate in MAC LE internet stampedes and usually pick up my collection items after the fact.
Acai is warmer from memory than the in-a-similar-vein MAC Strong Woman (which I regret parting with) and a long way distant from the hideous Heroine. I've included the comparison swatch < just to ease your mind. L2R- MAC Heroine, Acai, Rebel. The diff between the last two is exaggerated here by the sunlight penetrating further into the more transparent Rebel against my pale hand. Below we have purples from my personal collection for comparison.
warm indoor sunlight, and to the right we have cool indoor shade
I was going to onsell the Petit Red in the sample lot I scored - really I was - until I noticed it was a wee bit melty and thought fuck it, you're staying with me. Hate it when that happens :) but have nothing but love for this surpassingly beautiful yellow-touched deep rose pink. It's unlike anything else I own, and I do have quite a few versions of this sort of thing. Not red, though. In the slightest.
Petit Red is more muted on the lip than you might expect, drying down to low-sheen Amplified finish with a backed-off version of the somewhat violent shade you're seeing here.
neutral, natural indoor light
All Fired Up might look dupey in these swatches but that is brighter, harder, more matte and just not the same thing; Petit Red is closer in spirit to another of my faves, MAC Gesina (LE), and these two are a little more sophisticated and nuanced than the recent Retro Mattes, with Gesina being more red and more glossy. At around 90% opaque, Petit Red has just enough translucency to respond to your mouth colour and the texture is a freaking dream- smooth, clingy, persistent and impossibly even. It's very lovely worn sheer and stain-like, keeping its colour integrity and staying workable. I wear it while I'm puffing and sweating up the hills round here, so it's a solid performer and the most beautiful pink I've met in a long while.