The Tarte LipSurgence Natural Matte Lip Tints Are Office AND Tabby Approved

Published in: Makeup, Product Reviews

Tarte LipSurgence Natural Matte Lip Tint hope
Tarte LipSurgence Natural Matte Lip Tint in Hope

If these Tarte LipSurgence Natural Matte Lip Tints ($24) had been around back when I spent my weekdays preparing pleadings as a legal secretary in the city, I would have kept a tube in my pocket for emotional support. It could have kept me company in the restroom stall where I frequently retreated to secretly cry away my frustrations at work (’twas NOT my all-time favorite job).


The line of six matte lip stains, basically matte-ish versions of Tarte’s LipSurgence Lip Stains, has been around for about a year. Like their shinier cousins they have a twist-top and utilize the same “High-Performance Natural LipSurgence Technology,” which, Tarte claims, is “clinically proven to increase moisture content by an astonishing 6,000% after 28 days.”

LOL! I feel like that sentence needed a bunch of exclamation marks at the end: “…6,000% after 28 days!!!”

I’m not sure how anyone would ever measure something like that, but I sure do love the work-friendly finish and barely-there, whispery sheen.

The barely perceptible shine loosens ’em up a little, giving them a slightly more casual vibe…but not casual like ripped jeans, tank tops and flip-flops. More like a white shirt over tan jodhpurs and knee-high riding boots.

They deposit a gentle nudge of color that encourages a quick glance, as opposed to shouting, “HEY, LOOK AT ME!” I think they’d be perfect for an office with a strict dress code.

Tarte LipSurgence Natural Matte Lip Tint

Tarte LipSurgence Natural Matte Lip Tint swatches
Swatches from the left: Lucky, Exposed, Hope, Envy, Lively and Firey

Tarte LipSurgence Natural Matte Lip Tint lucky

Tarte LipSurgence Natural Matte Lip Tint exposed

Tarte LipSurgence Natural Matte Lip Tint envy

Tarte LipSurgence Natural Matte Lip Tint lively

Tarte LipSurgence Natural Matte Lip Tint firey

The colors and light, smooth texture combine to create lips that still look real — a far cry from the way my lips look when I wear several layers of a matte lipstick. Tarte bills them as moisturizing, but I think they still benefit from a starter layer of lip balm. Without it, my lips do feel a little dry by the end of the day.

The fact that they’re supposedly plumping, I basically disregard. Of course, you know me and so-called plumping lip products. πŸ™‚ I hardly ever notice a difference in the mirror, even when I can feel a tingling in my lips. For what it’s worth, at least these don’t sting/hurt.

They do, however, make me regret cancelling my gym membership, and by that I mean the caps can be hard to open. There were a few times when barely had the upper-body strength for it.


They taste and smell faintly of peppermint, but both dissipate after about five minutes of wear.

I really wish these were more moisturizing because I absolutely love the finish, and Tabs absolutely loves that they’re from Tarte (and consequently cruelty-free).

PRICE: $24 each
AVAILABILITY: Available now at Sephora stores and also online

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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So far, 44 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Vijaya says:

    I want these now! I love reading your blog for the same reason I hate reading your blog: I get too many shopping ideas!
    Vijaya recently posted … More Blog Awards- Two Stylish Bloggers and One Lovely Blog!

  2. Amista says:

    I love them all on you but personally i think Lucky would look best on me. Nice swatches, thanks!!
    Amista recently posted … My Foundation Tips &amp Tricks

  3. Terri says:

    I have a Tarte natural lip stain, which I really like. I’ve been going back and forth on these because I wasn’t certain if I liked the matte finish, but your review has tipped the balance in their favor πŸ™‚

    • Karen says:

      Hi Terri!

      Mattes can be iffy (don’t you hate it when they look so heavy?), but these are really nice. You might want to hang onto your receipt, though, just in case they dry out your lips. πŸ™‚

      What colors are you most interested in?

      • Terri says:

        Thanks for the advice (and for the great review)! My biggest fear with mattes is that they would make my lips look dead, so your review went a long way to alleviating my fears.

        I’m most interested in Hope and Envy, but Exposed is very pretty as well.

        • Karen says:

          Oh, I totally know what you mean. Sometimes I think that a flat matte lip can be cool if you’re going for a more artsy vibe, but for everyday/office wear having a tiny bit of sheen perks ’em up a little. πŸ™‚

          Hope is my favorite, btw!

  4. These are so pretty, and I love the chubby crayon shape! What mascara are you wearing in these photos? It looks really nice on you!
    Makeup Morsels recently posted … My Makeup Museum

  5. Nina says:

    the colors are lovely!

  6. Heidi says:

    I have this in Exposed and it really is lovely. I like that my lips look the same before and after having some tea and a bite to eat, so it’s great to wear when I’m out and about and socializing with people. I don’t have to touch up. I wasn’t sure about mattes either but the lightness of the formula really makes it work.

    • Karen says:

      I like that shade a lot (it’s my second fave, right after Hope). πŸ™‚

      Does it dry out your lips at all? Or are you one of the lucky gals who gets lots of moisture from the product?

      • Heidi says:

        It dries my lips just a bit, so I put a light layer of my trusty Burts Bees lip balm underneath and that helps a lot.

  7. Pretty colors, but look a little drying. How do you like the NARS Velvet matte lip pencils?
    productdoctor recently posted … They Dont Call it The Cure For Nothing! Natura Bisse The Cure Sheer Eye

  8. elle says:

    they all look pretty on you!!

  9. Dijana says:

    what blush/product are u wearing on your cheeks? looks pretty!

  10. Larie says:

    I’m always wary of mattes – so drying – but they look so lovely on you!
    Larie recently posted … The Closet Revamp Project

  11. Nicole R. says:

    Great review as always! I bought a couple of the Tarte lustre versions of this which I think are more suitable for spring/summer because of their shine. These look great and I may pick up a few for fall and winter since these seem more matte.

  12. Vicki says:

    These look good, I’m digging the pencil and the long-lasting thing. Hope and Envy look good on you.

    I too have been in a job that I hated so much I would cry in the Ladies’, I am glad we are both out of that situation, and if anyone reading is still in that position, you have my best wishes that it will improve soon.

  13. Issa says:

    the shades are pretty!

  14. NeenaJ says:

    I returned mine to Sephora because it dried my lips out so bad. The sales rep said she expected a lot of returns on these as the peppermint oil can dry out your lips. It’s a shame, because the color was lovely. πŸ™

  15. Kim says:

    I really love Tarte and their crazy claims. I wonder if they’re meant to be ironic. Either way, they’re pretty funny. πŸ™‚ These are nice – I think they’d be a little too matte for me but I really like Envy and Exposed. And you made me lol with your upper body strength comment. I’m sure I’d have the same problem.

  16. Liza says:

    These look gorgeous on! I have the Stila lip stain and I like it but it’s not that pigmented and gives just a sheer wash of color (which is actually nice if you’re going for a really natural look) but these have such a great finish. Too bad they are a little drying:(
    xo Liza
    Liza recently posted … A Few of my Favorite Fragrances

  17. The BB says:

    I love the matte and regular version of Tarte’s lip stains. I have Lively (matte) and it’s such a wearable bright. I also regularly wear Lust (non-matte) and it definitely doesn’t wear as long but I love it just as much.
    The BB recently posted … Lierac Paris

  18. Katrina says:

    they are sooo pretty! we don’t have tarte here in saudi arabia do u know a website where i can get these?
    Katrina recently posted … Shiseido Nourising Mascara Base

  19. vonnie says:

    lively and fiery are amazing on you! you look so glowy and pretty
    vonnie recently posted … Lets Do the Pretty Girl Rock – Keri Hilson Makeup Recreation

  20. Morn says:


    I’ve fallen in love with you and your blog! Love these and will be getting all of them. I work in the city at a law firm with a really strict dress code, that I break on a daily;) So I will be needing these when I am in the bathroom having my nervous breakdowns<3


  21. Jrel says:

    I love the colors lively and envy. I wonder if this lively is same with riri heaux of Mac when it comes to shade.

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