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WEEKLY MUST HAVE: Tarte’s Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush

By | weekly must-have | One Comment

Blush can really turn your entire face around. It literally can make you smile – without ever having to move your lips. While Tarte is known for their cult-favorite cream blushes and cheek stains, they’ve recently launched a powder blush made out of Amazon clay and it’s swoon-worthy!

Tarte’s Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush was inspired by their best-selling cheek and lip stains. I actually like them MORE because, applied with a brush, you get a very natural effect that you can build on from day to night for a more dramatic, intense evening look.

And the 8 shades are so sensational, I literally want to wear each one day after day. But I do have a favorite (or two). Number One favorite has to be Natural Beauty – a perfectly red-hued girly girl blush. Number Two is Flush, a deep berry that gives you that seductive, flirty “flushed” effect. Other colors are light pink, bright pink (great for summer), even a coral and a nude.

A word (or several…) from the company:

“These solar-baked blushes are infused with Amazonian Clay, nature’s most perfect ingredient. These nutrient rich
and skin-nourishing Amazonian clay blushes restore harmony for a flawless finish that lasts all day.

The soft blush is great for all skin types:
Oily skin: Amazonian clay minimizes oil in and around pores to balance skin and keep product in place
Dry skin: Amazonian clay hydrates skin naturally to restore moisture so your blush wears better & longer
Dull skin: Amazonian clay improves the appearance of skin clarity and skin texture
Combination skin: Amazonian clay is completely intuitive; gives skin an overall smooth & even appearance”

The color lasts for hours (not exactly 12, but close enough) and, as with all Tarte products, the blush is made sans parabens, sulfates, synthetic fragrances and petrochemicals.

Good for the environment = Good for your skin.

PRICE TAG: $28.00

I’M BLUSHING: tarte’s new Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush Collection

By | makeup | 2 Comments

As I have written in the past, I have something of an obsession with tarte’s cheek stains. They truly revolutionized cheek color – making the dewy, flushed look foolproof for all who tried – and in a multitude of shades that seem to flatter every complexion. They were practically perfect in every way. Then, our good friends at tarte contacted me about their newest color collection. As if the gel and cream stains for cheeks and lips weren’t enough, eight of their fabulous colors – from dollface to tipsy to flush – are now available as blushes.
I’m really not big on powders, in fact, my powder blush brushes have had very little use for years. I passed on pressed compacts in favor of creams, gels, and liquid tints. But when these arrived, I eagerly pulled out those neglected brushes.

In packaging reminiscent of Lauderée macarons, these fabulous mirrored compacts hold Amazonian clay blushes baked by the sun. They’re eco-chic and created with solar power to boot. Like all tarte products, what are missing are the petrochemicals, the parabens, the synthetic dyes and fragrances, and other harsh chemicals (and the solar baking means eco-production, too!). Instead you’ll find free radical fighters Vitamin C and E, nourishing beeswax, colors derived from natural sources, and the skin enhancing benefits of Amazonian clay. The clay works its magic on all skin types. For oily skin, it “minimizes oil in and around pores to balance skin and keep product in place.” For dry skin, the clay “hydrates skin naturally…so your blush wears better and longer.” And no matter your skin type, these clay blushes soothe, brighten skin, and help skin tone appear more even.

They’re a powder without being cakey. And they really do have great staying power. As with most mineral pigments, a little goes a long way, so a light sweep of color is all you need. Or, if you’re like me, experiment using a bit of powder to set over one a cheek stain.

I swept a bit of the dollface blush to set over the dollface cheek stain. It looked perfectly natural, which is what made me such a tarte fan to begin with. The best makeup looks like you’re not wearing any, and these colors look like they radiate from the inside out.

From winter pale to faux tanning, I use different colors throughout the year. So, I was happy to see two of my warm weather faves, tipsy and flush, both part of the collection. In all, there are eight shades: dollface, flush, tipsy, amused, exposed, natural beauty, blissful, and blushing bride.
Brand new for their Spring 2011 Collection, all are available exclusively at Sephora – both online and in stores – retailing for $25. Enjoy! xo alex

ENDLESS SUMMER: tarte Beauty in a Box for Sephora

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Although we can’t bottle up the summer sun for a rainy day, tarte has figured out a way to at least box up a bit of sun kissed beauty with their Sephora-exclusive Beauty in a Box: Bronze Smoky Eye ($45).
When I heard about the collection I thought it sounded like a great way to hang on to that summer glow just a bit longer. But when it arrived from our friends at tarte, I was thrilled to see it was also filled with some favorites suitable for any season.
All tarte products are free of parabens, phtalates, sulfates, petrochemicals and synthetics, and this set of six eco-chic products are all waterproof, water resistant or long-lasting formulas. The collection includes a deluxe-size lights, camera, splashes! – the waterproof version of their INCREDIBLE lights, camera, lashes! mascara. Also in a smaller, throw-in-your-luggage/purse size is park avenue princess bronzing powder that works well with all skin tones.
The other four items are FULL SIZE (this adds up to $112 worth of product for under fifty bucks). For a bit of fun, tarte has created a summer-inspired take on the traditional charcoal smoky eye by giving it a bronze twist. Following their step-by-step instructions, you can create the look using lock & roll 12-hour shadow in burnt bronze, and EmphasEYES waterproof shadow/liner in plum. I’m a bit of a klutz when it comes to the whole smoky eye look, but the ease of control with this shadow and liner makes it’s virtually goof proof. And it’s a fun take on the sultry classic.
The clean slate natural face primer, and rise and shine lip gloss and stain in nude are perfect day or night. The stain is essentially like their brilliant cheek stains only in a tube. Wear the stain alone for a hint of color, or add a layer of gloss for a bit more shine. And the primer is incredible and long-lasting without harsh chemicals.
The set is available for a limited time at Sephora stores and online at sephora.com
xo alex.

tarte turns TEN

By | makeup | 6 Comments
Happy, happy birthday to our amazing friends at tarte, who have shown women everywhere that eco-conscious beauty is more than skin deep. That going green doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice. That you don’t have to settle. And that sometimes less is more. Especially when the “less” means zero parabens, petro-chemicals, pthalates, synthetic dyes or fragrances. To celebrate their birthday, tarte sent me a party favor, two limited edition products to celebrate “a decade of high-performance natural beauty.”

If there is one tarte product that has reached icon status that’s the cheek stain. It was my first introduction to tarte all those years ago, and I have a bit of an obsession with them. I’ve yet to find a shade that isn’t flattering (though I am partial to flush, tipsy, and dollface). Enter the TEN cheek stain ($30). I don’t know what I love more: a pink that’s perfect from summer (faux) tan to winter pale, or the fabulous gold studded T-E-N that adorns the case. It might be a bit of both. What can I say? Just because I want my makeup eco-friendly doesn’t mean I don’t want it to look as fabulous as the less than eco products I’ve sent to the recycling bin. TEN cheek stain is available in stores and online, including tarte.com, beauty.com, Sephora, Henri Bendel and QVC.com.

While I hate to say I’d ever judge a book by it’s cover, the brass-studded case of tarte’s TEN collector’s palette is as beautiful as its contents. The set includes ten eyeshadows that you can use to create looks for day or night, from subtle to smoky. There’s a matte beige and a soft black, along with a variety of shimmering hues. (They even include a cheat sheet for getting a great smoky eye or jewel-tone lid.) The set also includes a great shadow brush, a double-sided liner in black and plum, and a travel-sized tube of lights, camera, lashes! (which first caught my attention when my friend B, who is truly a mascara connoisseur, first raved about it). The TEN palette includes $182 worth of product for $44, and is available exclusively at Sephora and sephora.com.
PROMO ALERT: The tarte generosity keeps going this week while they extend their Friends & Family 40% off sitewide discount to you! Shop tarte.com through August 9th and enter promo code FFAUG to receive 40% off and receive a free gift, too!

Happy tenth birthday tarte — can’t wait to see what your teenage years bring! xo alex.


By | Uncategorized | 38 Comments

My own interest in greening my beauty routine began about five years ago when I learned that there was so little regulation of what goes into our skin and beauty products. While I hated parting with old favorites, I’ve watched as companies worked to make cosmetics as eco-aware as they were luxurious — like the team at tarte who’ve been in the green beauty business for years.

I’m a huge fan, and when they offered to give Beauty Banter readers a few products, I couldn’t wait to share. Whenever someone asks me where to begin making safer choices at the makeup counter, tarte is one of the first names I’ll mention.

I think their mascaras are some of the best eco-alternatives around. And while their lash hugger is my go-to mascara, I was curious to check out a brand new tube that arrived in the mail the other day. A new addition to their multiplEYE regimen, the natural lash enhacing waterproof mascara ($24) is a “waterproof, sweat-proof and budge-proof natural formula.” It’s a deep, black shade that creates incredible volume (in fact, their tests show a 526% increase in the appearance of lash length). Along with the mascara they also sent their picture perfect eyelash curler ($15) — it’s ergonomically designed with a bit of a spring to it so there’s zero pinching. The silicone pads are pretty genius, too…no fear that I’m going to squeeze too hard and end up with crimped lashes. It is a really impressive duo: the curler and the mascara. And you can see for yourself here:

Without any other makeup on you can see the huge difference it makes when I curl the upper lashes of one eye and add two light coats of the mascara. I instantly look like I’ve had ten hours of beauty sleep (sadly, I did not). Not only does it look great, but it really lasts — without parabens, petrochemicals and synthetics. Proof you can find great eco-alternatives without sacrificing quality.

You can find these tarte products online at tarte.com, beauty.com and dermstore.com, and both online and at Sephora stores nationwide.

Leave a comment in the comment section below with your name and email address (so that we can get in touch with you if you win). YOU MUST ALSO BE A SUBSCRIBER OF THE DAILY BEAUTY BANTER E-BLAST! To do so, enter your email address under the subscribe button to the left of the site and follow the instructions sent to your email. 
Contest open to US participants only, please.
Contest closes Tuesday, July 13th at 6pm Pacific time.

Good luck! xo a.


By | skin | One Comment
I may be as fair as fair can but one look at childhood photos reveals that if I spend some time in the sun I actually tan. My mother, who grew up in a house on the beach, does not. And it is a combination of genes and good luck that have left her with great skin. Still, she vigilantly slathered my sister and I with Bullfrog as kids and taught us early on that a good dermatologist is a must-have. May is National Skin Cancer/Melanoma Awareness Month and it’s also Mother’s Day, so I’d like to thank my mother for making me get out of the water and put on more sunscreen every few hours even if I wasn’t so appreciative at the time.
As part of this month’s campaign for skin cancer prevention, tarte is releasing three new shades of their 24.7 natural lip sheers ($16). I like to think of them as ChapStick for grown ups. The post consumer recycled tubes (printed with soy ink) look very much like the Bonne Belle Lip Smackers of my youth. Only these come in a dozen fabulous tints and include an SPF15. Just in time for summer, the three new shades will look perfect with my tan (in a bottle): dawn (shimmering golden nude), twilight (shimmering peach nude) and sunday (shimmering deep pink). I also love the original seven days of the week shades, monday being my favorite as it mimics the color of Cherry ChapStick. All 24.7 lip sheers have UVA and UVB coverage with just a hint of color. They’re super moisturizing, and petro-chemical free — the beeswax base is infused with mango butter, coconut and peppermint oils to hydrate and soothe. Check out tarte’s other sun shielding products, like smooth operator oil-free tinted moisturizer with SPF 20 ($36). They’ve created a Sun Safety Collection on their site here. PROMO through May 20th, get 20% off the collection using code SPFMAY at tarte.com.

The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends these tips for sun safety:
• Seek the shade, especially between 10 A.M. and 4 P.M.
• Avoid tanning and UV tanning booths.
• Use a sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher every day.
• Apply 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) of sunscreen to your entire body 30 minutes before going outside. Reapply every two hours.
• Cover up with clothing, including a broad-brimmed hat and UV-blocking sunglasses.
• Examine your skin head-to-toe every month.
• See your physician every year for a professional skin exam.
For a comprehensive list of the best and worst in sunscreens, check out the Environmental Working Group’s report here. And pick up tarte’s 24.7 online at tarte, beauty.com and both online and in Sephora stores nationwide. Have fun in the sun! xo alex.

EARTH DAYS: Tips, Tricks and a Green Giveaway

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A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. – Lao-tzu (604 BC – 531 BC)

Today is the fortieth anniversary of Earth Day. A day to respect and celebrate this great, big planet of ours. Fortunately eco-awareness has come a long way in the last forty years and for many the respect isn’t relegated to just one day out of 365. Yet there is still much change that needs to come for the health of this planet. And that starts with us. I know that change is hard. But I challenge you to use this day to take a step towards greening your beauty routine by eliminating one product that uses petrochemicals, hormone disrupters and synthetics that aren’t good for you or the earth. Doing so sends a message to the companies that they need to get green and promote those that already have. To take that first step, here are a few of my top picks to get you started. I encourage you to start reading the ingredients in the products you use and look out for the worst offenders. The Environmental Working Group has a great cheat sheet to print up and keep in your bag (click on the “Shopper’s Guide to Safe Cosmetics”).

lipstick: ($19) in Julia

lipgloss: KORRES LOVE YOUR LIPS Lip Value Set ($29) – includes three cherry oil glosses in Light Pink, Nude and Beige Pink and a Pomegranatae Body Butter. A $57.00 value.

lipbalm: ($4)

primer: KORRES SILICONE FREE 99% Natural Face Primer ($28 full sized; $10 travel sized)

tinted moisturizer: tarte smooth operator oil-free tinted moisturizer with SPF 20 ($36)

concealer: ($6)

blush: tarte cheek stain ($30)– for spring I’m loving TIPSY, a coral pinky hue

shadow : tarte individual shadows begin at $10 but I love Tina Turnbow’s Flower Child Natural Eyeshadow Palette ($44 an $182 Value) The refillable palette includes 10 shadows and a double-sided eyeliner, mini eye primer and double-sided eyeshadow brush.

mascara: tarte Lash Hugger Natural Mascara ($18)

butter London in Fash Pack ($14) a great gray neutral for hands and on toes, Zoya’s springy coral Elodie ($7).

face: California Baby SPF 30 + Sunblock Stick – No Fragrance, .5 oz ($12.31)

body: ($12.99)

If you’re looking to go green but don’t know where to start, Sephora carries a variety of natural and organic gift sets, the perfect way to try out new products without making a big investment.

In other Earth Day news, Kiehl’s has created a Limited Edition Label Art series for their 100% natural and ECOCERT-certified organic, Açaí Damage-Protecting Toning Mist ($26). Artwork by Julianne Moore, Jeff Koons, Pharrell Williams and Malia Jones graces the bottles with 100% of proceeds benefiting the Rainforest Alliance. With the goal of raising $200,000 Kiehl’s teamed with the brilliant photographer David LaChapelle to capture the celebs and their creations. Locate a Kiehl’s store near you click here or go to www.kiehls.com to order online.

GREEN GIVEAWAY: In honor of Earth Day tarte is offering Beauty Banter readers the chance to win a fabulous giveaway. tarte lash hugger mascara ($18) is eco-friendly inside and out. Made with natural carnauba wax, mineral pigment for a great black tint, olive esters to nourish and rice bran wax to help lengthen lashes, it is also packaged in recycled aluminum tubes that may be re-recycled after use.

THREE lucky Beauty Banter readers will receive a tube by signing up for our newsletter (if you haven’t already it’s on the left hand side of the screen below) and leaving a comment along with your email. Contest is open to US residents and ends April 29th at 9PM Pacific.

AND DID YOU KNOW tarte also has a customer
recycling program with great perks?

Wishing you a fabulous Earth Day and look forward to learning about the products you discover while going green! xo a.

Get The Look: Keri Russell

By | celebrity looks | No Comments

The incredible Tina Turnbow has brought eco-conscious beauty to the world of celeb styling. Vera Farmiga, Claire Danes and Amanda Peet are fans, as are we at Beauty Banter. Tina recently collaborated with tarte to create the new Flower Child Collection. I recommend checking out her versatile Flower Child eyeshadow palette, with over $182 worth of eco-gorgeousness for only $44. Tina and tarte make for one fabulous duo.

Last Thursday, Keri Russell was aglow at the premiere of her latest film, Leaves of Grass, thanks to Tina’s makeup magic. Here’s how Tina prepared Keri for the big night.

Before makeup, Tina used the antioxidant packed multitasker The Solution by Envision Beauty ($79) to moisturize Keri’s skin. Then, “for a healthy complexion, I used a tinted moisturizer and created a peachy-pink cheek.”

Tina first applied tarte’s smooth operator oil-free tinted moisturizer with SPF 20 ($36) over Keri’s whole face and spot treated with tarte’s the eraser 4-in-1 natural concealer ($21).
She dusted tarte’s provocateur powder pressed mineral powder with SPF 8 ($30) to set the look and used a combo of tarte’s natural cheekstains ($30) in tipsy and dollface on the apples of Keri’s cheeks (I happen to love both these stains and layer them for a natural, healthy pinch of color).

For Keri’s eyes, Tina “wanted a soft, smoky charcoal eye with voluminous lashes.” Using her signature flower child eyeshadow palette ($44), she brushed on matte buttercup and shimmering peach in the crease of the eye and shimmering gray periwinkle on her lids. Tina then lined her eyes with tarte’s emphasEYES™ natural high definition inner rim eye pencil in charcoal ($18) and added a coat of tarte’s bottoms up ($16) on lower lashes.

Tina finished the look, with “a nude lip with a hint of pink sheen,” by combining applying the tarte’s pinky nude double-ended lipliner in dizzy blonde ($19) all over Keri’s lip and topping it with a shiny coat of tarte’s vitamin infused by BORBA lipgloss in om ($21).

The end result is quintessential Turnbow chic: made-up without trying too hard. Unfussy glamour that looks as fabulous for a Hollywood premiere as your own day-to-day life. And with her commitment to green beauty, the results are always as beautiful on the inside as outside. Thanks to Tina and tarte for making eco-beauty shine. And look for Leave of Grass in theaters Apirl 2nd. xo alex.

Anna Kendrick’s Eco Oscar Night Look

By | celebrity looks | 2 Comments

Nominated for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in Up in the Air, Twilight star Anna Hendrick’s red carpet look was fabulous and totally eco, too! Wearing a gorgeous ballet slipper pink off-the-shoulder Elie Saab gown, her hair and makeup were as ethereal as her dress.

Celeb makeup artist Sara Glick wanted to give Anna’s porcelain skin a soft, natural glow. She used Arcona’s Magic White Ice before applying makeup. “Anna has beautiful skin and doesn’t need much to make it glow. I prepped her skin with a light, all natural moisturizer to help it stay hydrated throughout the night.”

“For a natural flush, I accented Anna’s cheek bones with a coral shade.” Her pick? tarte’s natural cheek stain in eco-cheek. For lips, a base of tarte’s LipSurgence natural lip stain in charmed was applied and then finished off with tarte’s double-ended natural lipglosses in jake & samantha (the samantha side is a pale, cotton candy pink with lots of shine). Perfect choice considering the Jake and Samantha are named for John Hughes film Sixteen Candles (did you love that tribute?).

Sara finished the look “with a light spritz of lavender mist for added hydration and an extra dose of calming with aromatherapy” from Arcona’s Lavendar Hydrasol spray. Using a light finishing spray really helps set any makeup but lavender is also great for calming nerves which I am sure came as an added bonus last night.

Thanks to Arcona and tarte for creating green beauty that’s pretty in pink! Hope you enjoyed the show! xo alex.

tarte brings green beauty to the catwalk

By | Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Celeb makeup artist Tina Turnbow has launched her limited edition line for tarte just in time for Fashion Week in New York. While her clients include Claire Danes, Rachel Weisz and Amanda Peet, Tina turned her magic towards the runway for Lela Rose and Susan Woo last week. Check out Tina’s green chic inspiration and step-by-step below.

Lela Rose Fall 2010 Overall Look:
The moonlit eyes are mysterious, while the complexion and lips have a cloudy, hazy feel.

FOR EYES: Think of the eye as a rounded sphere or planet. The inner crease of the eye is darkened up to the brow with the shimmery deep blue gray (eyeshadow in lucy I’m home). The outer area is rounded, softly muted blackness. The center of the eye is the lightest, with darker edges (inner and outer corner of eye) ending in black (eye couture palette). Apply blue lagoon only in the center of the top and lower lids. Blend the blue into the gray and then into a bit of the black. There should be a bit of the blue and silver gray (eye couture palette) blended in the center of the lower lashline. Apply smolderEYES in the inner rim of the eyes. Top it off with a coat of lights, camera, lashes! mascara on the top and bottom lashes (no curling needed). Leave eyebrows-do not fill in. After finishing the eyes, clean underneath with the eraser 4-in-1 natural concealer.

Tina wanted the face to “feel muted like a hazy, cloudy sky.” She created the look by using:
· the eraser 4-in-1 natural concealer after applying shadows to
avoid fallout.
· smooth operator oil-free tinted moisturizer with SPF 20
(one shade lighter than model’s complexion)
· provocateur pressed mineral powder
· t-zone travel

To cheeks add “just a touch of healthy blush” with:
· blissful natural cheek stain (warm peachy pink)
· powder over blissful with provocateur pressed mineral powder

Susan Woo Fall 2010 Overall Look:
Effortless beauty- A fresh, slightly-dewy complexion with kohl-rimmed eyes.

Tina’s palette was “all about a healthy, dewy complexion.” To get the look:
• Spot treat problem areas and darkness with the eraser 4-in-1 natural concealer.
• Apply smooth operator oil-free tinted moisturizer with SPF 20 all over the face.
• Using rest assured brightening wand apply the sheer pink highlighter on top of cheek bones, over lids before shadow application, on the bridge of the nose, on the cupid’s bow and in the corner of eyes.
• Apply natural cheek stain in dollface in a U-shape from top of lids to outer and under eye area (acting as an illuminator).
• Dab natural cheek stain in true love on apples of cheek for “just a hint of flush.”
• Highlight cheeks with natural cheek stain in dollface.

Kohl-rimmed eyes add emphasis without being too smoky. Using the eye couture day-to-night palette apply the shimmery deep gray and top with the silver sheen. Then line the inner rim and lash line with emphasEYES™ natural high definition inner rim eye pencil in black and emphasEYES™ waterproof clay shadow/liner smudge the top line. You want to create darkness around the lash line.
• Curl lashes with picture perfect lash curler.
• Coat top and bottom lashes with lights, camera, lashes! 4-in-1 natural mascara.
• Using the lash and mascara comb brush brows in an upward motion.

Finish off lips with “a healthy, natural, berry stain” with LipSurgence™ natural lip stain in moody (exclusive to Sephora)\

Check out the collection at tarte.com, beauty.com and at Sephora onlie and in stores now.
xo alex.

About Beauty Banter
Beauty Banter was launched in July of 2006 as a comprehensive beauty blog covering trends, tips and tricks, insider secrets, and weekly must-haves. Beauty Banter has a reputation of being on the cutting edge of emerging trends and product launches so our readers are always the first to know what’s hot and what’s just not.