My first Tarte stain was from their True Blood collection:
I got it home and wore it religiously for two weeks. During that time I fell more and more in love with the color while becoming less and less crazy about the glitter factor. I finally decided that the latter outweighed the former, and with a heavy heart sent the tube back to Sephora.
I'll go on record here and say that if Tarte ever decides to sell this red shade again without the glitter I will buy a tube at twice the original price. That's how crazy I am about the red. They don't make it as part of their regular line, though, so I had to choose from their other shades.
I finally decided on Natural Beauty, which is a cool raspberry shade. I love the way it looks, and just like the True Blood shade it blends easily and quickly to create a very natural-looking flush on my cheeks.
Tarte Natural Cheekstain Pros:
- Smooth, blendable formula
- Highly pigmented--a little of this stuff goes a long way, which makes the $30 price a bit easier to stomach. I'm guessing a tube will last at least 6 months, possibly longer, when used daily.
- Lasts all day and doesn't need to be retouched like a powder blush (this is huge for me--I hate having to carry around my cosmetics all day just so I can do retouches).
- None of the currently offered shades match that gorgeous True Blood red that really will look good on anyone, and the glitter in the True Blood tube just doesn't work for anyone over 22.
- A little goes a LONG way, and especially when you're just starting to use the product it's easy to apply too much. No one wants to walk around looking like Bozo the Clown.
- All of Tarte's cheekstains smell like Lemon Pledge. I have no idea why Tarte thinks added scent is a good idea, but they do.
- As with most other higher-end cosmetics, the price point is really steep, especially for someone who's just starting to build their makeup collection. Unlike some of the other products I've reviewed and deemed "must haves" (ahem, Urban Decay Naked Palette) I have yet to even see mentions of drugstore cheekstain that come close to Tarte's quality. It really is one of those bite-the-bullet beauty finds.