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Finally, finally, FINALLY managed to get my hands on the Tarte Shape Tape Contour Concealer after being out of stock consistently for absolute months since it’s launch last year. It’s not like I live anywhere remotely near an ULTA store so I’ve had to stalk the Tarte website sporadically (but have never been quite fast enough – you snooze, you lose right?). If there was ever a product I’ve wanted to get my hands on so desperately (aside from the Master palette by Mario and the Jaclyn Hill Champagne Collection Face Palette – and I totally blame YouTube – #youtubemademedoit), it’s this.
Let’s start with the exterior. The packaging is rather chunky compared to its peers but that’s because it houses the fattest doe-foot wand applicator I’ve ever come across. Many people like it but I’m rather indifferent to it as I don’t apply it straight to the face. That’s far too much product, for me personally. Trust me, a little goes a very long way with this concealer. I tend to ‘dab’ the wand onto the back of my hand (using it as a palette to mix the colours) and pick up the product from there. It’s always easier to start off with less product and build up, rather than the other way round (there’s just no going back and frankly I don’t want to waste such precious product).
Coverage is unrivalled full-stop. I’ve been an avid user of the Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Complete Coverage Concealer (Light for under my eyes and Medium-Light Neutral for my face), and before that, the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer (Custard for under my eyes and Macadamia/Ginger for my face). Those who are familiar with these will know that both have a good level of coverage and are pretty decent in their overall offering which is why I’ve used them consistently over the years. They, however, have just been ‘owned’ by the Tarte Shape Tape Contour Concealer.
One thing I love about the Tarte Shape Tape Contour Concealer is that it maintains it’s ridiculous level of coverage throughout, from the moment I place it onto the skin and begin to blend it out (preferably with my ring finger and finished off with a beauty blender – many, including the aforementioned, will lose a tiny bit of it’s coverage at this point) to the moment I take it off my face at the end of the day – a good at least 8 hours after.
You might perceive that something with such full coverage, that it’s texture surely must be very thick and heavy. To the contrary. It’s extremely light and sets quickly to a soft yet smooth, matte finish that is completely flawless. And when I say matte, I don’t mean a dry or chalky matte. Not at all. Personally, for me, I don’t have to set this concealer and that doesn’t ever really happen. It stays put all day without moving or creasing. On the few occasions that I did set it (out of pure habit), I found that it looked somewhat dry, especially as the day wore on, and you can tell that you’re wearing makeup (which I’ve found has started to happen even with my Urban Decay Naked Skin which I’ve ALWAYS set).
Finding the right colour was a tad difficult as I was going off online, animated swatches (as opposed to ‘on the skin’ swatches). I wasn’t convinced by the colour description vs image of swatch at all and rightly so. So from watching a few Youtube videos, I narrowed it down to about three shades and of the three, I picked Medium (for medium skin with peach undertones), which looked to be about the right shade for my face for covering blemishes etc, and Light-Medium Honey (for light to medium skin with peach undertones), one of their new shades (part of their colour extension for the product) for my under-eyes. Considering that they are only one shade apart on the swatch spectrum, there is a substantial difference between the two shades, not to mention a difference in undertones. There is definitely a lot more warmth in the Medium shade, with a lot more yellow in the undertone, whereas the Light-Medium Honey veers more on the pinky side of the spectrum so is a lot cooler. However, I’ve found that mixing the two shades together gave me the perfect shade for under the eye: slightly lighter, warm yet brightening (Tarte, listen up!).
There are 14 shades available although, from what I have experienced, there is a huge jump between the colours.
On my ‘no makeup’ makeup days, which happens more often that not, I will just pop on some of the Tarte Shape Tape Contour Concealer under the eyes, around the nose and on any other blemish and that’s pretty much my skin done. I do set it around the face though but make sure to keep the under-eye area free of powder. For those with generally good skin, this is more than enough. Even with skin that is not best behaved, the Tarte Shape Tape Contour will cover up even the most stubborn of blemishes as it’s coverage is seriously intense.