Haul & Review: Tarte Smooth Operator Amazonian Clay Illuminating Serum & Amazonian Clay12 Hour Blush

For Christmas this year my partner bought me the the Glitz & Glam Beauty in a Box set from Sephora (now discontinued), and in it there were three Tarte products. One was a mini cheek stain, which I found ill suited for my oily prone skin because it left my cheeks feeling tacky. Strike one! Another was a Lock & Roll eyeshadow; while the product isn't half bad, I think the packaging is gimmicky and cumbersome. Strike two! Because Tarte's products are formulated without harmful ingredients like parabens, synthetic fragrances, and GMOs, I wanted desperately to fall in love with the brand, but I was beginning to fear that I hated Tarte. Did Tarte end up striking out? Read on!

Smooth Operator Amazonian Clay Illuminating Serum

The last product in the set was a deluxe sample of the then unreleased Smooth Operator Amazonian Clay Illuminating Serum. At first, I though this was strike three. To be honest, the product seriously confused me. I did not have the faintest idea how to use it. I tried it as a highligher on my cheekbones, but it didn't pack the shimmery glow I expected. Instead, it blended in to my natural skin tone. After sitting in my makeup drawer for a few weeks, I did a little research on how other people were using the product and discovered that the Illuminating Serum is to be applied all over the face either alone or mixed with a foundation. Oooooh, so that's how you use it!

On its own the Smooth Operator Amazonian Clay Illuminating Serum, which comes in only one shade, offers little in the way of coverage. I started mixing into my Revlon ColorStay foundation, and sweet goddess this stuff is awesome! Finally, a home run for Tarte! It gives my Revlon ColorStay, which is a full coverage matte foundation, the luminosity that I have never been able to obtain without turning into an oil slick. In fact, when I add the Illuminating Serum to my foundation, I find that its wear is extended and oil is actually better controlled. I had to pick up a full sized bottle of this product!

The magic, according to Tarte, is in the Amazonian Clay, which the brand touts as a miracle ingredient for all skin types. The claim is that Amazonian Clay helps hydrate dry skin and minimize oil for combination and oily skin, thus providing all users with healthy, radiant skin and longer wearing makeup. While I can't speak for those with dry skin, this product works wonders on my combination/oily complexion. Although the price is pretty steep (I picked my full sized 1.7 ounce tube up at Sephora for $32), a little of this product goes a long way and has dramatically improved the performance of my other make up products.

A dab of the Illuminating Serum (on its own, not mixed with foundation).
The Illuminating Serum blended in (on its own, not fixed with foundation).

Amazonian Clay 12 Hour Blush

Impressed by the Smooth Operator Amazonian Clay Illuminating Serum, I was eager to try other Tarte products that contain this magical ingredient. After reading rave reviews on the Amazonian Clay 12 Hour Blush, I caved and shelled out the 25 bucks on one in the shade Tipsy. Tipsy is an awesome matte coral that I think is really in trend for Spring. It is really pigmented and applied smoothly. Most blushes break down and oxidize easily on me, leaving my blush deeper and splotchier as the day progresses. Not cute. However, this looked the same hours later as it did when I first applied it. This is seriously the best blush I have ever used. Although pricey, I honestly feel like this blush is worth every penny. In fact, I plan on skipping the cheap drugstore buys and investing my money in another shade or two of this blush...after I finish Project 10 Pan, of course!

All products featured were purchased with my own money, and I am in no way affiliated with or being compensated by Tarte. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Favorites More