Tarte LipSurgence Review – my thoughts on the line in general and the differences between the Natural Lip Tint, the Natural Lip Luster, and the Natural Matte Lip Tint

Tarte has a line of lip products called LipSurgence.  Originally, the product only came in one formula: LipSurgence natural lip tint.  This product won so many awards for its luxurious naturally moisturizing formula that they decided to produce two more lines of LipSurgence, the lip luster, and the matte lip tint.  I have used all 3 of these formulas so I wanted to post about my thoughts on each of them.


Like Tarte’s Amazonian Clay 12-hour blushes and Cheek Stains, the packaging for the LipSurgence lip pencils matches the actual product color so it makes it easy to pick out the right shade if you have several of these.  What you probably can’t see from the picture below is that the packaging matches the formula of the product as well.  For example, the Tints have no glitter in them but have some shine so their packaging is pearlized.  The Lusters have glitter in them so their packaging is glittery.  The mattes have no glitter or shine so their package is matte and has a rubberized feel to it.  Tarte LipSurgence Glitzy Perky Dazzled Swank Flashy Sweet True Blood Exposed swatches

The lid stays on well and I have yet to have an accident in my makeup bag where they lid came off and got everything else covered in product.


These come in the form of jumbo lip pencils with a twist up product advancer at the bottom. If you apply the product at an angle and not from the tip, then you should not need a sharpener for these.

You probably will not need a liner for these either. They stay where you put them and I have not experienced any running, smearing or settling into fine lines. I like to wear a liner with the matte shades that is just a shade darker than the one I’m applying just to give my lips more dimension but it is certainly not necessary.

When you apply these, you will notice that they smell minty due to being infused with peppermint oil. The smell fades quickly after application but I think its rather nice. As far as a taste, I think they maybe taste slightly minty and sweet but I’m not sure if that is just my nose talking from the smell or they actually taste like that.

How do they feel?

Tarte claims that after using these for 28 days you will see a 6000% increase in your lips moisture content. I can’t attest to this because I have no way to objectively measure my moisture content, but I can say that from the very first time I used a LipSurgence product, I noticed that my lips felt very moisturized, soft, silky, creamy and luxurious. I would definitely say that yes, they are very moisturizing, even the matte shades.

I do think over time they will increase the moisture content and condition of your lips due to the heathy ingredients, vitamins, and antioxidants in them.


Tarte claims that these colors will last all day, but I find that I need to reapply after 4 or 5 hours or after eating. They do wear off evenly though so you don’t have to worry about your lips looking weird if you can’t get to a mirror to reapply immediately. A lot of people describe these as lip stains but I’m not sure I would agree with that. Some of the darker shades have more of a staining effect than others but I still feel like the color wears off evenly and naturally.

The problem for me is that my lips feel so great with these on that I am starting to dislike the way my lips feel without them, so basically, I’m hooked.


At $24 a pop, these are pretty pricey but they will last you a while. I like that I don’t need a brush to apply so no product gets wasted. Tarte frequently puts out value sets with these products where you get several shades for a little more than the price of one so keep an eye out for those.

Way better than a gloss

I may be biased here because I was never into glosses, but the main reason why I love these so much more is because they are not sticky AT ALL. With LipSurgence, you never have to worry about your hair getting stuck in your lip goo and then streaking it across your face when you pull it out (yes I’ve actually had that problem with glosses). The Lusters and Tints do have some shine to them and reflect some light but they are definitely not as shiny as a gloss, which I think is a good thing. I think the Lusters and Tints give the perfect amount of shine. Just a hint with the Tint and a little bit more sparkle with the Luster. And for no shine there is matte.


The tints are the original LipSurgence line and they are lovely. They are a sheer lip color and do let some of your natural lip color shine through. These have no glitter, just a little bit of shine to them.


The lusters have a lot of very finely milled glitter in them. The glitter does not feel chunky or gritty on your lips like some glittery lip glosses do, and the effect of the glitter is not gaudy or tacky at all, it just makes your lips shine and sparkle more than with the tints. I also feel like these are a little bit more opaque than the Tints and can be built up more. My favorite luster shade is Glisten, a beautiful peachy nude shade.


The mattes have no glitter or shine to them, they have a completely opaque matte finish but they are very moisturizing just like the tints and lusters. I love a matte lip for tying together a really bold eye but other matte products I’ve tried before were too drying on my lips. So far I’ve only tried Exposed, the nude shade, but it is GORGEOUS. I am thinking Envy will be my next purchase because it looks lovely.

So, to summarize:


  • Very moisturizing creamy and luxurious texture
  • Good for you, natural ingredients
  • 3 different formulas to choose from depending on which look you are going for
  • Not sticky like glosses
  • Easy to apply, no sharpener or brush needed
  • Stay in place without the need of a liner


  • Do not last all day as claimed
  • A bit pricey at $24 a pop


I would definitely give these 5 out of 5 stars. These are some of my favorite lip products of all time.

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