So, I have a thing for Tarte Cosmetics. I have hauled a few bits and bobs from Tarte over the past few months and decided to share a multiple-product review in one sweet [rather large] post. Grab a snack and let's get this party started!
Clay Play Palette*
If you have been reading this blog for a while, then you know - I love the brand's "Amazonian Clay" formula. Tarte's mattes in particular are uber smooth, soft and pigmented. They blend like a dream and while some of them might be a touch powdery, there is not even a single drawback that I could think of.
Clay Play palette is one of latest launches from the brand; as you can tell it is an 'all-matte-palette' (except shade Instinct, which has a soft sheen to it) and contains both: eye and face powders. Technically you can also use these to define smaller parts of your face (such as nose), fill in your brows as well as contour and sculpt your cheeks.
When you look at it, you can probably tell the palette is visually split into three parts: neutral, cool- and warm-toned. Bigger pans contain face powders, which depending on your skin tone, can be used as a bronzer or contour. Great thing about shade Timber is that - it is a great bronze/contour colour for beauties with a deeper complexion; while shade Desert could be a nice cool-yet-not-deadly-cool colour for someone with a very fair skin. Clay Play is hands down the brand's most versatile release yet.
This palette comes with a very nice large mirror and its cardboard packaging reminds me a lot of old-school KVD palettes (which, as you might know, now come in a plastic case). Shadows blend like a dream and I love the fact that these are neither overly cool- nor warm-toned; they're right in the middle and are as neutral as shadows can be.
Here are swatches; no photo editing or eye/face primers were used. Please click on each image to zoom in and read more about colours swatched.
All of these mattes have a great pigment and they look just as good as they swatch/apply. Onyx (aka the black shade) is surprisingly quite pigmented and pitch-black, which is something I appreciate. They also smell of Nesquik - I believe this is a very Tarte thing lately, because all of the palettes that I own (except original Tartelette) smell just as good. Not going to lie, I feel like these boost my endorphins and I am more likely to grab Clay Play over any other neutral palette I own, just because it [oddly] makes me happy. Don't judge before you give this baby a good whiff. P.S. I see what you did there Tarte!
Who will like it? Make-up beginners, freelance make-up artists and beauty enthusiasts in general. However, if you already own any of KVD Shade & Light palettes (be it for eyes or face), Tartelette/ Tartelette In Bloom or any other all-matte edition - chances are you don't really need an extra neutral/contour palette. The closest thing to it, which I have, is Shade & Light Eye Palette (my go-to), but since I have my bronzer/contour and shadows all in one place with Clay Play (plus the alluring Nesquik scent) - I actually like it a little bit more. If you, like moi, use a lot of shimmery/glittery/metallic shadows or loose/pressed pigments - an all-in-one neutral matte palette like this is a great choice. I really like Clay Play and will definitely get a ton of use out of it.
Finally I got my hands on the infamous Shape Tape. I ended up buying mine online, since it is not sold at Sephora. First things first - the tube is huge. Secondly - the applicator is huge. Thirdly - the scent is delicious (the closest thing I can think of is Chanel Hydra Beauty Skincare range). Once your concealer is applied, it will vanish though, so no worries.
You might know from my Instagram page that I am a concealer junkie and perfecting my complexion is a favourite part of my daily make-up routine. Shape Tape is easily the World's #1 concealer since 2016 and, although I was not sure whether it would look good on my rather dry skin, now I know that I shouldn't have waited for almost two years to finally try it. It is everything and your momma's signature grilled chicken. It is that good.
For starters it comes in a great shade range (14 shades to be exact), where you get a nice spectrum of various undertones (be it yellow, pink, neutral or warm). Although I was pretty much buying these blindly, the brand's description was "correct" enough and both colours that I got work really well for me. I have a light skin with neutral undertone and shade Light Neutral (duh!) is a perfect match. Light Sand works fine, but it is a touch lighter/yellow-er than my skin.
Now, of course my hand is way darker than my face (thank you Dubai), still I hope you can see the difference between two colours swatched. Although the applicator is quite large (and it does pick up a ton of product), I would recommend using as little as you can because this concealer does go a very looooong way.
Another thing worth mentioning: despite its very light, almost liquidy texture - this formula is so concentrated and opaque, so that you can easily go from "natural beauty" to "cake central" in a heartbeat. Shape Tape dries down reasonably fast, so do work one area at a time. If you have oilier under-eye, this concealer will be great for you, because it almost sets itself and won't crease. I personally love using it on my nose and chin; foundation and concealer seem to play Houdini tricks when it comes to my nose in particular, but never with Shape Tape. Thankfully this formula never accentuates pores or dry patches (which dare I say - are frequent guests on my face) and even if you have drier skin - give it a go, because it has more of a natural/satin finish, rather than cracked and matte. I don't think I will ever use it under my eyes (too delicate), but anywhere else - yes, please!
Clay Stick Foundation
Not long ago, American Sephora offered free deluxe-sized samples of Tarte's latest Clay Stick Foundation and of course I had to dive in. There are 12 shades in total, ranging from Fair Beige to Rich Honey. One that I got is Fair-Light Neutral and it is a great colour-match, very similar to Hourglass Shell.
Thing with this particular formula though is that it is very creamy, smooth, light and pigmented. You can easily get a sheer coverage with it (just spread it from the center of your face outwards) or build it up to medium. But! The longer I wear it, the drier it makes my skin feel. It does emphasize some of my patches and pores too. Almost as if it never sets. Now, with a good moisturizer underneath - I might handle it, but it is not a product that I am crazy in love with, because I have better options (Hourglass, Tom Ford to name a few).
My skin type might be the one to blame; if you have normal, combination skin - you might really enjoy it. I am not sure about very dry/oily skin types though, because this is by no means a hydrating or "matte" foundation. Alas, this is not a favourite of mine and I would much rather spend my 39 USD on Shape Tape or anything else from the brand.
Tarte Clay Stick Foundation in the shade Fair-Light Neutral
Camera, Lights, Flashes Mascara
I guess my top favourite product category from Tarte - is their mascara. I have already tried (and raved about) Tarteist Lash Paint, as well as original Lights, Camera, Lashes on my Instagram. Naturally, I figured "why not try everything else?" and getting a tube of Camera, Lights, Flashes was a one second decision.
One of the reasons why I love the brand's mascaras is that they never irritate my very sensitive eyes. With a wrong formula - I actually feel like scratching my eyeballs out and that is not a fun scene. On top of that, my lashes are quite naughty. They don't want to behave and despite their rather impressive length, they are a bit sparse and unruly (I literally have lashes that point in different directions). Which is why my #1 priority is: natural, sexy volume and hold. Nothing sticky, clumpy or drying please!
Tarte claim that this is a vitamin-infused formula (okay), that increases lash volume by 752% (okay!). Now, I have zero idea where this insane number came from, but this product right here does give your lashes a beautiful volume and length. It doesn't smudge on me, but can flake just a tiny bit after almost 8-10 hours of wear, which is perfectly normal.
It is a touch more intense than the brand's original Lights, Camera, Lashes (purple tube) and the wand is rather spiky; its bristles come in different lengths, pointing in different directions; they do pick up a ton of product. Which is why, my biggest tip is - wipe off the excess (aka scrape it off back into the tube). You can either use short- or long-bristles' side; but do be careful, because there is a possibility of poking yourself in the eye. Also, it can get messy real quick, so do keep a few q-tips next to your vanity (just in case).
If you have thinner lashes, you might really enjoy this formula, because it will build up volume and curl nicely. Now, it might clump up a bit, so don't panic; I always use a lash comb in case of an emergency. If your lashes are short, I would recommend Tarteist Lash Paint or original Lights, Camera, Lashes instead - since both of them have smaller, "easier" wands. If you are blessed with gorgeous long and thick lashes, but you want to take it to a whole new level - this guy is for you! Especially once it gets just a smidge drier, it is way more user-friendly. Now, many people say it is rather hard to remove it; I use make-up oil and never experience any issues with mine.
Color Splash Lipstick
A few months ago Tarte have released a beautiful range of neutral-toned lipsticks with women of every complexion in mind; Color Splash line offers everything - from flesh-toned nudes to delicious berries, mauves, reds and browns. For some reason these are not sold in the UAE, but if they ever make it here - I guarantee a sell-out.
Let's talk about this gorgeous packaging for a second: turquoise-marble-goodness. There are no two tubes that look the same and this formula contains a mix of nourishing ingredients to give you a long-lasting, comfortable wear (olive oil, shea butter, coconut oil to name a few). Every lipstick has a satin finish and these little guys are not scented whatsoever (which is a shame, because I hoped they would smell like vanilla). There are 24 shades available.
Two colours, which I was very excited to try, were: Beach Babe [left] and Rum Punch [right]. They are essentially an exact same thing, except Rum Punch is a tiny bit darker.
There are no "eccentric" colours in the Color Splash line, so all of these will look very flattering against a plethora of skin tones. I love a good neutral nude (nothing too yellow or peach) and these two shades are exactly what I call "my perfect nude". Beach Babe in particular has a very soft pink hue to it, which makes it a very flattering everyday colour.
These glide on like butter and are very smooth. They don't settle in my "cracks" and make my lips look quite pouty. I would not necessarily say that they are hydrating, but they don't dry me out either. I find them to be extremely wearable, comfortable and overall really well-made. If you want to see all of them lip-swatched, this video might help. If you are a fan of a traditional bullet, check these out.
Posh Pout Quick Dry & Glossy Lip Set
Last, but not least - I have to mention one of the brand's 2017 holiday kits, which I think is amazing. I am talking about Posh Pout Quick Dry & Glossy Lip Set. If you have watched my "Gift Guide" Insta-Stories from a few days back, then you might remember these little munchkins.
Basically, there are 8 miniature lip products here, which come in two different formulas: Quick Dry Matte Lip Paint and Glossy Lip Paint (liquid lipstick and opaque lip gloss respectively). You might remember from my previous Tarte reviews, that I do love both formulas - matte liquid lipsticks are very long-lasting and comfortable, while these glosses are quite pigmented and give you a gorgeous, high-shine pout.
Please click on each image to zoom in and read more about colours shown.
From what I know, these are new exclusive shades and if you squint - you will see that, despite different formulas, each colour has a match. For example shade Eager looks fabulous mixed with shade Reign (so on and so forth). Quality is amazing; these are very smooth, pigmented and long-wearing. Plus the packaging is out of this World cute.
I don't wear liquid lipsticks or lip glosses on a daily basis, so these are more than enough for me! Beautiful, rich shades that will look incredible on literally everyone out there. I am particularly excited about these mesmerizing reds and berries; you guys - they look like a velvet heaven on the lips. If you are a lip product junkie, this is a great kit for you!
Thank you guys so much for reading! What are your Tarte favourites this year?
Tarte Cosmetics is exclusive to Sephora in the UAE (sephora.ae) and Sephora, Ulta as well as tartecosmetics.com in North America. The brand does provide international shipping.