A few weeks ago I found out by chance that Tarte Cosmetics now delivers direct to Spain. Not all products are eligible but most of their products are. Prices are a little less than brand equivalent in Sephora España and I was able to take advantage of their Independence Day free shipping which included free international shipping. Usually free international delivery qualifies on orders over €65. A major draw for me to them is that they are cruelty free with a few vegan products.
I was curious how they were able to cosmetics ship to Spain without getting flagged in customs. From experience and maybe the law’s changed within the last 3 years, Spain doesn’t allow the import of make up. It’s touch and go if parcels clear custom inspections and if it’s courier sent, it’s more likely to get stuck/flagged. The way they got around it was having London as the destination country then it getting into regular post via tracked mail. I won’t lie I was confused when tracking said it had arrived in the destination country, Londres! For now that’s how they get around customs, that is until Brexit goes and F’s everything up (thank you fellow countrymen). All up delivery took about 2 weeks which is the usually delivery speed via snail mail from outside of the EU.
It wasn’t my first Tarte order. I’ve been using their Tartelette In Bloom eyeshadow palette P kindly picked up for me when he was in the USA for a while and love the formula. Various YouTuber’s exclaim their love for Tarte’s Shape Tape concealer which was once reason why I decided to check out their international delivery policy in the first place, after liking the palette so much. I ordered the Shape Tape concealer, Lights, Camera and Splashes waterproof mascara and travel size Maracuja oil.
I’m no angel when it comes to reducing my plastic waste. I’m doing what I can, seeking non plastic alternatives and trying to have less waste in general. So you can understand my disappointment and slight anger when I saw the mascara. I didn’t realise it came with a faux leather sleeve. If I had looked properly and realised when ordering I wouldn’t have purchased it. Tarte’s all about being natural, sourcing ingredients from the Amazon, giving back to the communities they source from and then they package a mascara in an unnecessary faux leather sleeve meaning plastic (I doubt it’s pineapple leather) which will only be tossed out and probably never ever recycled, causing more environmental problems. I even went on an Instagram Stories WTF to Tarte Cosmetics I was that annoyed. Too much appeasing Instagram unicorns and I’m sure if unicorns existed they say, hey, what the F are you doing? No gimmicks, just good quality products with minimum mess up the environment packaging!
As for the mascara itself, I like it and I don’t like. It does not shift during HIIT workouts where at the moment I’m dripping and it’s only the warm up. Sweat running down my face and it does not budge. It’s yet to smudge from wear and it’s even stayed put in the sea in some serious way too much fun jumping waves am I going to get wiped out waves. It’s comes off easily with coconut oil. The cons: That unnecessary sleeve not only being a non recyclable gimmick, also mean you can’t hold the wand as you’d like – it gets in the way. It has a tendency to clump lashes together so an eyebrow comb’s needed. The second coat can produce clumps, further clump lashes together and it can leave them looking a bit plastic (ha ha!). It also needs like most mascaras a retouch during the day for popping lashes once again. Will I purchase it again? No purely for that faux leather plastic sleeve. If it didn’t have that sleeve maybe if they sorted out the plastic lash effect. I’ve ordered one of their vegan mascaras to try which some reviews have said it’s fairly waterproof. I hope so as Tarte’s a brand I really would like to like due it’s stance on being paraben, mineral oil, SLS, synthetic fragrance, phthalates free opting for more natural ingredients like plant extracts and other naturally derived ingredients.
It’s still early days for the maracuja oil. I’m not keen on the tocopherol preservative, but I can find a pure one on iherb.com. The concealer, is a no. It’s way too orange. I choose Light Neutral thinking it would be similar to Kat Von D’s L9 Neutral Lock It Concealer Creme (which I’m sticking with) as they have a similar range/selection of shades. I also didn’t like the thick formula. Maybe if you’re under 29 without fine lines it works. So if anybody uses Tarte Cosmetics Shape Tape concealer in Light Neutral let me know if you want it. I’ve only swatched it twice on my arm.
The unicorn packing tissue. I did notice and was happy that the parcel contained no plastic packaging. I guess that went on the mascara.
NYX known for being an inexpensive cruelty free brand that’s also an Instagram and YouTube favourite. I’m in no way an Insta brows, heavy make up girl which is how it’s mostly advertised. I prefer a natural look with a kitten flick. NYX’s been around for a while in Spain and I’ve always stayed away from their products due to the ingredients. I avoid petroleum based ingredients and palm oil. Read their ingredient list these two pop up frequently. However as I mentioned previously, I’m becoming more and more disheartened with Sephora España. The few cruelty free brands they stock who don’t sell in China, 2 I don’t get on with and the others get expensive! The thing at the moment is eyeshadow pallets and sometimes a girl just wants a single, individual eyeshadow or nail polish that’s cruelty free and doesn’t cost a bomb. Hence trying NYX. And that they have a NYX store in Barcelona that’s on my!
So far I’m impressed! Their I Have A Headache Nude Matt Shadow’s a great dupe for Tarte Cosmetics, Tartelette in Bloom, Charmer. I also liked I could choose an less plastic waste alternative. I’m sure this isn’t their intention, however I had a choice of the individual eyeshadows in the usual plastic pot packaging or I could select one from their make your own palette selection shades/refills which comes in a metal pan, cardboard sleeve with a tiny piece of plastic film showing the product inside. Both shadows weighed the same. I think though the 2nd option was a little more expensive, but I chose that over the hard plastic packaging. It’s actually working out better than the Tartelette In Bloom Charmer it was duping. Used with Nars Pro Prime Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base after a HITT workout the shadow not budge!
The Tame & Frame Tinted Brow Pomade in Chocolate is a little lighter and redder than I’d have liked however the next shade up was too dark. I went on the advice of the NYX girl who helped me as I was undecided and as my brows are quite full anyway it’s not too noticeable. I usually just fill in small gaps, creating a fuller brow rather than full on Insta scary brow. I’ve been using Anastasia Beverly Hills DipBrow Pomade in Ash Brown which was a little too dark for me. I prefer less red brow pomades but most are red base for some reason. I didn’t like it was starting to dry up after about 6 months it hence looking for a new one. Even though NYX is a little on the red side, I prefer it to the Anastaisa one as it wears a little longer. With both I’ve noticed I dip the brush in the pot then transfer the pomade to the back of my hand as I find this is easier to get the colour right. I can be heavy handed and this way I don’t get solid block of colour to try to blend or remove! Cup of Cheer and Pink Cloud
The nail polish or lacquer ingredient list is a scary especially when trying to pronounce all of them so I’m hoping it’s a safe on to use! Out of the 2 shades I picked, I prefer Pink Cloud as a Cup Of Cheer disappears into my skin tone and leaves my toe nails looking blah. I only paint my toe nails, as I can’t stand nail polish on my fingernails. Like most pale pink nail polishes I find I usually have to apply a coat a week later and then a few days later as the colour tends to fade with the sun (I do my nails every 2 weeks) and it doesn’t appear to chip unless you really whack your toes then yes, it chips and takes a while to dry. Would I buy it again, probably not. I’d prefer finding a better vegan alternative.
Have you tired any of the above products? What’s your thought in make up packaging? Yes, I like nice packaging but it’s not the be all and end all. Sometimes the most simplest, plainest packaging contains the best product. And yes, I know marketing plays a huge roll!
* NYX is owned by L’Oreal who sell physically in Mainland China even though NYX is cruelty free and doesn’t physically sell in China. I choose to shop at NYX as I can only order so much online (packaging waste), pennies only go so far and Spain only has a small selection of brands not owned by the larger animal testing corporations. When I can I always choose the 100% cruelty free brands which I’ve always said is easier with skin care than make up.