“Inspired by the rain forest’s deep orchid hues at dusk, Tarte’s limited-edition eye and cheek palette has everything you need to create sultry and sophisticated day to night looks. Infused with colored clay, which naturally color-corrects as it supports oil control, this makeup provides longer wear and truer color payoff. This modern ingredient from the mountainous regions of Brazil brightens, evens, and soothes skin, while the velvety formula glides on and delivers rich color—without settling into fine lines and wrinkles.”
I am a sucker for palettes.
Seriously; I own dozens and yet I am drawn to them again and again. I know, logically, I must have similar colors available to me in my 200+ eyeshadow collection, but somehow I can’t help myself. Maybe its the ease of the all-in-one style packaging. (I’m as much–if not more–a sucker for packaging than I am for palettes.) I love the ease of having a coordinated set on hand on workday mornings, when I’m half asleep and doing my makeup while chugging my morning coffee. Knowing everything (or, more often) almost everything I need to pull together a quick, cohesive look is housed together in one place makes that process so much easier.
Until now, however, my palette collection has pretty much been limited to a one type of item palette (with the exception of the Lorac Pro To Go I keep in a drawer at the office for those mornings where even coffee can’t get me moving in time to slap on my face). They’re all eye or blush palettes, but nothing that combines the two. When I heard Tarte was coming out with a limited edition eye and cheek palette for the fall, I was intrigued. As soon as I laid eyes on what it contained, I knew the Tarte Rainforest After Dark Colored Clay Eye & Cheek Palette had to be mine.
This limited-edition, colored clay eye and cheek palette promised to be perfect for “day to night looks.” Though made of brown plastic, the compact is sturdy and well constructed, with a beautiful wood-grain pattern on the top, adorned with a golden metallic snake with a purple rhinestone on its head. Inside, the underside of the lid contains a huge, very clear mirror and the bottom half is filled with a full sized blush, generously sized highlighter and bronzer, and six eyeshadows. The retail price for this set is $38.00, which I think is quite a steal for the amount of product you are getting.
One small digression–I notice Tarte is now calling these products “colored clay” where they were originally called “Amazonian clay.” Makes me wonder if they are now being sourced differently? Or, perhaps, just something that they used in this palette? But, as long as they remain paraben and phtalates free, and have that same great texture the old “Amazonian” ones did, I guess that’s neither here nor there. Just a little personal nitpick.
Anywho, on to the contents.
They are gorgeous. I absolutely fell in love with the color scheme they chose for this palette.
- 0.14 oz Highlighter in Champagne
- 0.14 oz Bronzer in Park Avenue Princess™
- 0.21 oz Blush in Unleashed (nude rose)
The Champagne highlighter is stunning. It reminds me a of a slightly less shimmery version of theBalm’s Mary-Lou Manizer, which has been a favorite of mine for quite awhile. The shade is a light, creamy beige with a fair amount of golden shimmer, but no true sparkle or glitter bits to be found. It makes for a lovely shade on my fair skin, and could easily be an everyday sort of highlighter. Very pretty.
The bronzer they included is their best-selling bronzer, if I am not mistaken: Park Avenue Princess.
Oh my; I am now sad I waited so long to try this bronzer! It is beautiful on my fair skin. It is a lovely soft, matte brown that does not pull too orange on me, nor does it look too brown and muddy. It is buttery smooth on the skin and very easy to blend out for a soft, natural looking contour. This product is available separately in a full size, and I just might find myself picking one up when this one runs out!
The blush is a new shade, only available in this palette right now. Called “Unleashed,” they describe it as a “nude rose.” To me, it is a lovely almost mauve-y shade; its not too pink, not too nude.
I normally don’t care for pink shades of blush, as they call too much attention to my rosacea, but this color won me over on the first application. With a light hand, I can easily achieve a very natural looking flush on my cheeks. It is soft enough not to make me feel like I look flushed, and the nude undertones keep it from being too pink. I could see this being beautiful on a wide range of skin tones and really hope they release this one separately eventually–I must have it in my pro kit as well!
Now, onto the eyeshadows. There are six 0.035 oz shadows:
- Bare to Explore (pink beige)
- Make a Mauve (plum mauve)
- Plum Away with Me (dark plum)
- Up to No Gold (gold)
- Tan-gled Up in You (tan)
- Don’t Turn A-Brown (dark brown)
(Also a complete sucker for cute color names. These? Yup; I love ’em.)
Normally I decry nude shades in palettes, as I’ve just been completely inundated with neutrals these past few years. (In all fairness, no one forced me to buy all the Urban Decay Naked palettes, in addition to my self assembled neutral MAC palettes, but–well–yeah.) So, I don’t normally get too excited about brown neutrals these days… Until I opened this palette. Holy crap, those are some perfectly chosen neutrals!
Now, what first drew me to this palette was the purple side. I adore purples and cannot get enough of them. It wasn’t until I got them in my hot little hands and got to swatch everything that I realized just how perfectly the gold and brown shades would compliment those purples, making this something of a perfect palette for me.
Bare to Explore is the lightest matte shade in the set, with minimal color payoff. You really need to layer it on to see much of that pink come through, but I actually like that it is so light. It makes an excellent blending shade for all the others included in this palette.
Make a Mauve is my favorite shade in the palette; its the perfect cool purple neutral. It reads a touch beige-y on my skin, but is absolutely lovely when combined with Plum Away with Me or Up to No Gold. Loving this one.
Plum Away with Me is the crease shade of my dreams. A rich, darkened plum, this gives me some great definition and is also fantastic for smudging along the lower lash line.
Up to No Gold is a stunner. This is the most shimmery, metallic shade of the bunch and I think it will be one I use in a ton of looks. It adds a lot of shine without any fallout.
Tan-gled Up in You is a great matte brown. It is the perfect soft, neutral brown; the kind I use often in all sorts of looks. It plays well with the other shades in this set and makes a good foundation for a neutral eye. No complaints from me.
Don’t Turn A-Brown is a lovely, rich dark chocolate brown. It has a great satin finish and blends like a dream, with no powderiness at all. Between this and Plum Away with Me, I will have no trouble deepening an eye look or subbing it for liner when smudged along the lashline!
I’ve seen a bunch of complaints from other reviews of this palette about how Tarte doesn’t list their product names on the palette itself. Instead, they include a little clear plastic insert the names are printed on, which I find pretty obnoxious too. Inevitably, I lose that little plastic shield and then forget the names of half the colors in the palette. Not such a big deal to normal people perhaps, but a real pain for bloggers and makeup artists who want to remember which shade was used where.
So, I can up with a solution: glue dots. I simply took a couple glue dots and affixed the clear disc to the bottom of the palette, lined up so that it matched up with the color that would be directly above it, on the inside of the pan. Its a little hard to read thanks to the purple font, but it does the trick. While not elegant, its functional, and it means I won’t be scratching me had wondering which shadow was which a month or two down the line.
Not pictured, but also included in the box was a little double-sided card, which they call the “Step-by-Step Glamour Guide.” Each side features an eye look, using a selection of the shadows. A cute little extra if you’re stumped with where to start when you get this palette.
Beautiful. Sensual. Well thought out. Complete.
Those are just a couple thoughts that spring to mind when I think of this palette. I seriously have fallen head over heels for it and can easily see this becoming my go-to for the next few weeks, if not months. Not only is it excellent for traveling, but it is just what I’ve been longing for: the absolute perfect palette for those mornings where I want to look good but not spend a lot of time or thought on it. Every single color and product housed in this case is a winner. I can pull together a wide range of looks in no time, and don’t even need to think on which blush or bronzer would work best–every stinking color in this set works so well together, it was like they were made for one another. (Well, they probably were, but you get what I’m talking about…)
This, my friends, is a true gem. I cannot recommend it highly enough. It may just become your new best friend.
This palette is limited edition, so don’t hesitate to grab this one while you can!