Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Tarte Lipsurgence Power Pigment Review

A while ago, Tarte revamped their Lipsurgence lip pencils and essentially made them thinner (i.e., less product) and supposedly made them more pigmented. They then decided to really drive home the point about the pigmentation, and named these "Power Pigments". While I approve of the alliteration, do I approve of the pigmentation? Let's see...

The packaging is made of plastic, and these resemble every other 'chubby' lip pencil out there. These are swivel-up lip pencils, and so you won't waste any product in sharpening them (I should hope not - they have reduced the amount of product within; it would be too much to then have to sharpen them as well!)

The new packaging is more fun, and a lot cuter than the old packaging. While the old packaging was chubbier, and the exterior cover reflected the shade of the lip color, the new packaging has not just the shade of the lip color inside it, but also a unique design. Yep, each of these power pigments has a different design on the outside, which I think is a nice touch.

They also have the names printed on the cover. Really, I do think Tarte has done a good job with the new packaging, but this review is about the product inside as well, non?

The shades I have are:
- Tipsy
- Blissful
- Flush
- Blushing Bride

Tipsy is a peach-coral shade with a semi-matte finish - it has a slightly glossy finish, but feels like a matte on the lips. It sits comfortably on the lips, but at the same time, when you wear it, you can feel that there's something on your lips. It's not an unpleasant feeling, just a tad strange.

This shade was the lightest of the lot for me, and it is a wee bit chalky against my skin. Ideally, I'd use a deeper lip liner under this, or I'd top it off with a red lipgloss, just to deepen the shade. On the other hand, it does look nice with heavy eye makeup. I've also used this to warm up lip colors that were too cool-toned for me. I like it nice enough, but I wouldn't repurchase this because I'd go for something deeper. Light and medium skins will find that this shade looks wonderful on them! Deeper skintones might want to skip this.

Blissful is an orange coral that's deeper and more vibrant than Tipsy. This is the coral shade for deeper skins! It has a semi matte finish similar to Tipsy. It feels more comfortable to wear than Tipsy.

This is a nice shade for summer; it's a coral that doesn't look so orange it's almost neon, but at the same time it's not so light it looks strange on me. It's a great, everyday coral shade - you could wear this and not worry that you look out of place or strange. I'd recommend this shade for everyone!

Flush is a sheer pink berry; this had the glossiest finish of the four, and as a result was also the most comfortable to wear. Despite being a berry shade, it's appropriate for all seasons because of its sheerness. It's a great day and night shade for deeper skins; lighter skins might want to use this sheered out for the day.

It does give the lips a flushed look, but if you want to use this as an MLBB color, it might not fit the bill. It's definitely going to add some noticeable color to your lips. It's a pleasant color, and suitable for work.

Blushing Bride is the darkest shade of the four. It's a deep, dusty rose pink that looks lovely. It's definitely a more 'vampy' shade, but a gorgeous shade nonetheless.

Deeper skintones will have no problems at all rocking this shade, but lighter skins might find it a bit overwhelming, because it is quite pigmented. It's best to pair this shade with a more subdued eye.

As you can see from the swatches, there's not much difference between a single swipe of the lip pencil, and multiple swipes. You can wear it lighter, or build it up.

Something to be noted: these have a light minty fragrance and have a minty, tingly sensation on the lips. It's not irritating, and disappears in a minute or so, but if you're sensitive to the tinglies and smells, you might want to test this before buying it.

On to the bad news. These so-called 'power pigments' aren't really chock full of pigment, after all. Basically, they're more pigmented than the regular Lipsurgence lip tints and the lip lusters, but about the same as the Lipsurgence hydrating lip cremes, and the Lipsurgence matte lip tints. Now, all the Lipsurgences have the same amount of product in them and cost the same, but these Power Pigments have less than half of the product for the same price! I think that's outrageous.

They also don't last very long on the lips - I get about 3 hours on them, and they all but disappear if I've eaten or drank something - and they don't stain my lips either, so they're not long wearing. They aren't the most moisturizing and hydrating formula either; if anything, I find them a tad drying.

I'm a huge fan of the Lipsurgence lip cremes and the matte lip tints, so I was expecting a lot from the power pigments. Sadly, these just don't cut it. Given the plethora of chubby lip pencils in the market, there's a high benchmark for products, and you just cannot charge so much for a sub-par product. Tarte, are you listening?

BGMM Rating: C


  1. AnonymousJune 05, 2014

    I do love the packaging, both the patterns and the sparkly lid :-) The Tarte tingle is rather strange - when I first tried one of their clicky pen glosses in Blissful, I thought 'uh'oh (my lips and plumpers do NOT mix attractively), but it was actually OK. Odd!

    1. Yeah, it's not a lip plumper, but it definitely tingles. I wonder how they manage to do that?

  2. I'm eyeing Tipsy, all the Tipsy's that Tarte has, seeing as this is my current state, seems appropriate. non?

    1. Blush, yes. This, no. You can find better formulas in the same color :)