Tarte – Complexion Brightening Lipstick (Medium-to-Tan)


Online Description:

What is it: A creamy lipstick that helps to brighten and awaken your complexion.

Who is it for: Anyone looking for their perfect nude lip color.

Why is it different: Get total lip therapy in a beautiful nude shade that’s uniquely you! This creamy lipstick has a glossy, tinted core that gives the appearance of fuller-looking, luscious lips. Thanks to complexion-enhancing pigments and emollient waxes, lips never appeared more youthful-looking.

How do I use it: Twist up and apply as you would a normal lipstick.

Get total lip therapy in a beautiful nude shade that‘s uniquely you! These creamy lipsticks have a glossy, tinted core that gives the appearance of fuller-looking, luscious lips. Thanks to complexion-enhancing pigments and emollient waxes, lips have never appeared more youthful.

Medium-to-tan: a brightening soft berry shade


My Thoughts:

Yet another amazing, full-size product courtesy of my Glossybox subscription, but unfortunately, this product has already been discontinued. I was pretty bummed to find that out when looking up information for this review because I really enjoy this unique, trendy product. There is a light, chemical scent in the lipstick, but nothing that would make repurchasing this product something I wouldn’t consider repurchasing, if I were able to.

Now, I’m obviously not within the ‘medium-to-tan’ spectrum designed for the shade’s intent, so I’m not quite sure why they sent me that color instead of the one designed for fair skin tones, but either way, I like this lipstick.

Packaging:                                                ★★★★/5

Arriving in the typical tube packaging, with Tarte’s unique design to this one. I like the vine leaf design to it which compliment the Amazonian theme the company generates a lot of their products around. The cap is a smooth slide off with a bit of strength behind it and it doesn’t slip off easily like most of my other lipstick tubes do. There is a small information label on the bottom of the tube that includes the product and shade name with the size and address for the company.

When I slide the cap off, it reveals a gold inner tube that twists to bring up the actual lipstick. The concept of a darker inner core color that is surrounded by the lighter, outer layer of product, but it doesn’t really stay separated as intended. What I don’t like is how easily manipulated the cream tube is by the slightest amount of pressure. If I don’t want the product getting smushed up against the sides of the inside of the tube, I have to use a brush to apply this, which is annoying considering the way this lipstick is packaged was designed to be quick and convenient.

The short, stubby packaging is great for travel since it can be multi-purpose and doesn’t take up much weight or space.

Performance/Wear:                               ★★★★★/5

As much as I love the funky, two-toned lipstick layers in this product, it never really shows up that way. Upon first swipe, it just looks like a light, gradient effect with my lips, but either from talking, drinking or reapplying, the colors end up mixing to create a dark, peachy color. Don’t get me wrong, it is still a beautiful color that I love, but it doesn’t really stick to the effect intended by the design, which maybe had some part to play in why the product was discontinued.

The inner core color looks like a dark ruby color when it’s still within the lipstick itself, but applied, it looks more like a sheer, dusty rose color. The other layer is a medium nude brown that provides the same color applied as it does on the lipstick. Together, they were great, but separately, if you can bring yourself to carving out product from the inner layer, they wear just as marvelously and both can be used as cream blushes applied together or separately.

Since this color is designed for complexions darker than mine, I think it goes without saying that it doesn’t actually brighten my complexion, but instead draws attention to my lips by making them appear bolder and darker than my natural lip color. The lipstick creates a pretty shine finish, without looking overdramatic nor does it settle in the lines in my lips or on my face. What I really enjoy is how moisturizing this is without feeling heavy on my lips or cheeks.

When worn on my lips, I don’t have to stress about this bleeding or feathering, but it does transfer and can smudge so bringing this along throughout the day for touchups is necessary. If you decide to add gloss over this to intense the shine, I have yet to find a product that has a negative reaction with this, like breaking down the integrity of the product or creating a weird scent.

The first layer of application is very pigmented, but still sheer. Two layers of application gives pure opacity, but completely blends the colors together. When the colors fade from drinking and talking throughout the wear, it fades evenly to create a natural, flushed look to my lips which buys time in between touch-ups.

Skin Swatch

Price:                                                          ★★★★★/5

This product has lasted me quite some time and since it’s also multi-purpose, it only validates the cost that much more. As I mentioned, the product is currently discontinued, but for all the ways this product is great, I would definitely repurchase this if it was available.


malate, polybutene, octyldodecyl neopentanoate, pentaerythrityl tetraisostearate, polyethylene, bis-diglyceryl polyacyladipate-2, ricinus communis (castor) seed oil, vp/hexadecane copolymer, isononyl isononanoate, aroma/flavor, c10-30 cholesterol/lanosterol esters, lauryl methacrylate/glycol dimethacrylate crosspolymer, 1,2-hexanediol, caprylyl glycol, butyrospermum parkii (shea) butter extract, cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, mangifera indica (mango) seed butter. May Contain/ Peut Contenir/ (+/-): yellow 6 lake (CI 15985), red 7 lake (CI 15850), iron oxides (CI 77492), blue 1 lake (CI42090).


  • Unique layer looks
  • Moisturizing
  • Buildable
  • Doesn’t bleed
  • Multi-purpose
  • Doesn’t feather
  • Doesn’t settle into fine lines on lips or cheeks
  • Shine finish
  • Doesn’t enhance dry spots/chapped lips
  • Plays well with other products
  • Doesn’t look streaky


  • Falters under pressure when applying
  • Transfers
  • Smudges

Texture:                                       Cream

Scent:                                           Chemical

Recommend?                             Sure

Repurchase?                               I would, but it’s discontinued at the moment

Retail:                                           $17.00

Size:                                              0.12 oz.

I’d love to hear about your experience with this in the comments!! 😊

One Comment on “Tarte – Complexion Brightening Lipstick (Medium-to-Tan)

  1. Pingback: A Year of Makeup – Day 076 – ♥The Pale Adventurer♥

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