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Tarte Mascaras-Which One is For You?

tarte MascarasMascara is my absolute must-If I were stranded on a desert island and could only bring a few things-mascara would be there!  As you’ve seen from my previous makeup tutorial posts-I like a pretty bold lash and while I have good lashes to begin with-they aren’t great.  I’ve scouted out the most effective mascara, while keeping it natural in ingredients.  That’s where Tarte Cosmetics come in!  I’ve been using Tarte mascara for a while now.  I’ve come to the bottom of the tube of each mascara product they offer. While I really do like them all, I do have my favorite and each mascara is suited for specific needs.   If you are looking for a more natural alternative to mascara, but still want dramatically gorgeous lashes-I can point you in the right direction!

Tarte Cosmetics Mascara Products

Mascara #1 Lights, Camera Flashes-Statement Mascara

Pros:  This mascara gives you thick, long, black lashes.  Your lashes, with the proper application, will look false.  I like this mascara for special occasions.  It’s creamy but does not rub off on the skin.  It’s long wearing and not flaky or dry looking in the least.  This mascara contains many natural ingredients including beeswax to protect and vitamin B5 to strengthen.  Tarte actually claims that this mascara will increase the volume of your lashes by 725%.  That’s quite and increase, but I must say-my lashes look insane with this mascara.  It is my g0-to for a night out.

Cons: The brush is what gives your lashes such a dramatic look, but it is hard to get used to.  It is thick and stiff with very small, hard bristles.  In the beginning, I poked my eye over and over with it-it took me a few days so get used to it.  This mascara also has a tendency to look spidery.  I also end up with black on my upper lid if I’m not insanely careful.  Taking a wet q-tip helped but once it’s on the skin, it doesn’t come off easily.  It takes extra effort to remove this mascara-I am able to do it with a lot of rubbing with my oil cleanser though.  Even after several hot towels and rubbing, I still have a little bit left never fail.

Mascara #2 Lights, Camera Lashes- 4 in 1 Mascara

Pros: I like this mascara because it’s not as dramatic as the above mascara but it still makes a statement.  It looks more natural but still gives my lashes a big boost.   It lasts all day.  It does not rub off on my skin.  The brush is also more comfortable then the above product.  I love that it contains olive esters that help condition the lashes.  Everyone needs that!   It’s called 4 in 1 because it lengthens, curls, volumizes, and conditions.  It also comes in a water-proof version, which I haven’t tried but definitely will if I ever need water-proof.

Cons: I feel like I have to work to get the mascara on my lashes.  It takes more time to get the look I’m wanting.

Mascara #3 Gifted Amazonian Clay Smart Mascara

Pros: This mascara is very comfortable to wear.  It goes on smooth and creamy.  If you are looking for a dramatic yet natural look, this is the mascara.  It makes my lashes look thick without looking spidery.  It is easily removed despite it lasting all day.  This mascara contains Amazonian clay which actually nourishes and strengthens the lashes, protecting the lashes from  becoming brittle or falling out.  I feel like my lashes look soft and thick without the spider legs or rigidness.  This is the mascara for you if you want that little girl, bright eyed look, if that makes any sense!  Basically, it makes my lashes look like I was born super lucky in the lash department.

Cons: Besides giving me the perfect thickness and length, it is not as natural as I like but more natural then most.

Tarte Cosmetics Mascaras

If you’re wondering, yes, I’ve tried the Lash Fibers.  If you haven’t heard-Tarte has a product where you apply a coat of mascara, then tap on lash fibers to your upper lashes, then set with another coat of mascara.  So far I don’t have the hang of it.  I’ll admit-I haven’t really tried though.  The only time I used it, the fibers got into my eye and it was irritating, but I did not follow the directions-I’m bad about reading directions before I dive into things!  I’ll continue to work with them and if I end up seeing good results then I’ll do a post.

I’ve also used Tarte’s Opening Act Lash Primer. It has a 360° magniLASH brush that helps volumize, lengthen, separate, curl and condition.  I sometimes wonder what the point of a lash primer is.  The best I can come up with is that when I use it, I can get a nice thick coat on my lashes without the color (primer is white)-this means for me that there won’t be any black on my eye lid.  I don’t know if it’s the way my eyes are shaped but I’m notorious for walking around with globs of mascara above my lash line.  So being able to build thickness without worrying about the messiness on the lid is really nice.  The primer goes on nicely and really gives my lashes a polished, thick look.  If I weren’t in a hurry most days, I would probably use a primer daily for this very reason.  I will say that the primer is more natural then the mascara.  In fact, on the EWG Skin Deep website, they rate Tarte’s primer a 2 out of 8.  The mascaras are rated around a 4.  Using a primer would cut back on chemicals around your eyes.

I also recommend THIS eye liner for a precise black cat eye as well as THIS inner rim liner.  I talk more about that HERE.

In conclusion-I really do like Tarte mascara.  I know there are more natural mascaras out there but Tarte’s mascaras are free of parabens, mineral oil, phthalates, sodium lauryl sulfate, triclosan, synthetic fragrances and gluten and they are mid-range in price and easily accessible since you can find them at both Sephora and Ulta.  My favorite mascara is GIFTED, but for a more dramatic look I can’t live without Lights, Camera Flashes!

Feel free to ask me any questions in the comments if I haven’t cleared up the differences between Tarte’s mascaras!

xx, Jenni

UPDATE:  Since writing this post, I have discovered that Tarte Cosmetics include propylene glycol in their mascara formulations.  This is an ingredient that should be avoided at least on a daily basis.  While I still adore my Tarte mascara, I have switched to 100% Pure’s mascaras for daily use.  They are A LOT safer.  Check them out HERE.


  1. Jentree says:

    I have the Amazonian clay mascara! I saw it at Ulta and the brand seem like one if the most naturals there. I like it a lot though I usually prefer a thinner mascara that separates the lashes more. I’m finding that I like the creamier mascara look!

    I also purchased their stick cream blush – not near it to get the correct product name but it is wonderful!

  2. Amy Grieser says:

    I am using your recommended Tarte Mascara & although I really like the mascara, I have a hard time getting it off. I end up with little black flakes everywhere. What do you use to remove it with?

    • Amy-I find that too-Sometimes I get a tube that isn’t flakey but most of the time it is. I think it depends on how long it’s sit on a shelf. I love how it looks though so for me, it’s worth it. I remove my makeup with oil and find that it really works so well and is so gentle on my lashes. I have no problem removing all the mascara with an oil. I use THIS oil cleanser that I make and incorporate the oil cleansing method. Go HERE for more info. on that!

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