Tarte Hydrating Shape Tape Foundation Review

I’ve been trying to work with the foundations that I have, but they all seem to cling to dry patches, so I wanted to try something new. I was going to get the L’Oréal Lumi foundation, but I can only find it on Amazon, and I’m not keen with shopping on there.  In all fairness I didn’t look very hard, but I decided to try this Tarte foundation after seeing Hannah talk about it, in this post.

I decided to get it pretty much straight away, as it sounds like something that I’d love. After a while of playing around with it, I’ve finally come to a conclusion, and that’s why we’re here today. Obviously.

The Shade Range

This foundation caused a lot of controversy when it was first released, as the shade range is pretty terrible. After seeing the huge progress with Fenty, Tarte really took a step back with the limited amount of darker shades. Hopefully they bring out more shades soon, as we all know it’s the right thing to do. It’s disgusting that we’re in 2018 and we still have to complain about shade ranges.

The Price

This is a pretty pricey foundation, coming in at £33 on the Tarte website. You can currently get this in a set on QVC, but the shade range is even worse on there. I bought this when they had 25% off everything, so I did get a small saving. It’s also worth noting that we don’t have to pay customs, as it’s all included which is always a bonus. That extra £20 kills me every time.

Picking a Shade

Not my catchiest subheading.

 Swatching a foundation that’s only available in the US, from the comfort of my own home here in the UK is not very practical. Again on Hannah’s recommendation I went to the Temptalia Foundation Matrix to find my shade. It recommended that I should get Fair Beige. Being the worrier that I am, I also checked on the Tarte website, as they have a ‘Find Your Perfect Shade’ option. It asks you a couple of questions, and then picks a shade based on your answers. It came out with Fair Beige, so I went with it.

Long story short: I got Fair Beige, which is the second lightest.

It’s a perfect match for me, and for once in my life I don’t have to adjust the shade with lightening drops. In the swatch it looks super orange, but it matches me perfectly. I didn’t expect it to swatch that colour, as it definitely doesn’t go on like that.

How to Apply

I’ve never used a foundation like this before, as I’m used to working with pumps. This doe foot applicator is all new to me. The first time using this, I had no idea what to do.

Do I apply it in one area and then blend?

Or do I apply it all over and then blend?

The first time I applied it I went with the first option and it was a big mistake. It took ages to build. It felt like I was layering up and not getting anywhere. The next time I wore it I went with the second approach. It was much better, as it doesn’t dry down quickly, and it’s easy to blend.

The Formula

Tarte claims that this foundation is: ‘A hypoallergenic, luminous-finish gel foundation featuring the same complexion-perfecting superpowers as shape tape concealer with an added boost of skin-smoothing, oil-free hydration’. I’m not going to lie, I didn’t know what hypoallergenic meant, but I’ve now learnt that it’s unlikely to cause a reaction. However a swatch test is always a good idea if you’re unsure.

It also contains collagen & hyaluronic acid-packed to keep the skin hydrated whilst helping to plump skin and refine pores. Tarte also claim that it doesn’t crease, cake or fade for 12 hours.

My Thoughts

If this was a YouTube video cue the sigh. You know what I mean.

I just don’t get on with it. I mean I have dry skin, but with all of these acids and such I thought I’d be okay, but I STILL LOOK DRY. Since I’ve been using this, I’ve been struggling with my highlight too, as it’s showing texture that’s never been a problem before. I’m drowning my skin in hydrating setting sprays and Fix+ to try to get a better finish. Which does ultimately work, but I thought I wouldn’t have to do that with a hydrating foundation.

I also find that it doesn’t set properly. I’m trying to avoid powdering my face, as I don’t need any extra help to look dry, but the foundation feels really sticky on my face. Plus powdering a hydrating and dewy foundation doesn’t really make a lot of sense.

This might be hard to describe, but I had my fingers on my chin, as I was leaning my head into my hand, and when I moved my hand away my fingers were covered in foundation. This was also a good couple of hours after application. Which obviously isn’t ideal. Maybe I apply too much, but I find that when I applied less you could still see my redness underneath. Plus with the amount that I apply you can still see my freckles, so it’s not like I’m drowning myself in it.

I don’t actually look too dry on this photo, but I did exfoliate and everything the night before, so it’s gone on a lot better. It still feels sticky to the touch, so the transfer is terrible. Also please excuse my messy bedside table. 

It’s fair to say that I’m not keen. In all fairness I’ll continue to use it, but I doubt I’ll be rushing back to buy another one. Next I think I’ll be giving this Rimmel one a try again, as I loved it last time I had it.

That was my Tarte Hydrating Shape Tape Foundation Review. If you have tried this foundation I’d love to know how you get on with it. Or if you have any other dewy foundation recommendations, I’d be forever grateful if you could send them my way.

Thank you for reading!



  1. 25th April 2018 / 4:15 pm

    I’ve seen lots of people talk about how much they’re been loving this (despite the awful shade range in the collection), so really wanted it myself. But, after reading your review i don’t think i will because my skin is dry and i am trying to find a seriously good foundation that doesn’t highlight that! Let me know if you find any good ones (other than the Rimmel one) 🙂 xx

    • 25th April 2018 / 10:27 pm

      I’d only see good things about this, so I was gutted with the results I got! It seems like it works for some people though. I’ll be sure to report back, when I find a good one xx

  2. 25th April 2018 / 8:17 pm

    I really don’t like the matte version so I didn’t think this would be any good either! I just don’t like Tarte foundations as I’ve tried 2 others before and I haven’t liked them. Great review though and pictures xx


    • 25th April 2018 / 10:28 pm

      I remember reading your review literally just after I ordered mine, and I was a bit gutted haha! Thank you so much xx

  3. Yiota
    26th April 2018 / 10:48 am

    I haven’t tried this foundation but the lack of darker shades is disappointing. So many brands are expending their shade range, how difficult is for a brand to create more shades?


  4. 26th April 2018 / 2:20 pm

    The price has always put me off buying it. It doesn’t look very big either and I’ve never ever seen a foundation with an applicator like that one haha. I’ve heard quite a few mixed reviews on it, so it’s a little disappointing that you don’t like it – especially for the price! Ouch. Great review though xx


  5. 27th April 2018 / 12:06 pm

    I haven’t seen too many reviews on this so I’m glad you’ve written one! Can’t believe it transfers, I hate that with foundations it’s the worst!Have you tried any cushion foundations before as I think they work well on drier skin types?
    Charlotte / Charlotte’s Picks

  6. 27th April 2018 / 2:43 pm

    Aw, that’s too bad you don’t get on with it! You would think it works well for dry skin… I wish I could try out the Tarte products for myself, here in Belgium… I would hate to pay customs so I’m waiting for them to actually come to Europe, or at least in-store in the UK!

    Love, Charline | Charline Has a Blog

  7. 27th April 2018 / 9:45 pm

    I really love the honesty of this review – already, I hated the idea of this foundation due to the limited shade range and you’ve sort of made it clear in my mind exactly why I wouldn’t purchase it. Transfer is my worst nightmare and, like you, I apply quite a bit but I still don’t expect that much transfer after 2 hours of wear. I also don’t like the idea of a doe foot applicator on a foundation – just doesn’t work for me! x Thanks for keeping it real darl,
    Marina Rosie x

  8. 28th April 2018 / 8:11 am

    It is nice that you have reviewed this foundation, although I have it and use it nearly every single day – I must say that I until they launch more dark shades, I’ll be quiet. That being said, I also have dry skin, but from what I hear is that you are dealing with texture issues and there are a few things that could potentially help (speaking from my experience here). Have you tried glycolic acid serums or toners? I know Pixi and the Ordinary have pretty good toners, as well as Caudalie (but it is a bit more expensive) – great thing about them is that you can use these toners as part of your PM routine and they will keep your dry patches and even dark post-breakouts scarring at bay. I couldn’t recommend them enough. They will exfoliate your skin on a deeper level, so they are so much better than scrubs. I use mine only 2-3 times a week, not more. Also, another thing worth trying, would be a really good hydrating night cream. I can’t stress it enough – whenever I use a light or regular moisturizer formula during the night – I always wake up with such a horrible, lizard skin. Avoid gel creams too. So aside from drinking plenty of water, you could try something like Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream and make sure to use a good moisturizer before applying your makeup. I love Embryolisse Lait Creme Concentre – it is perfect for us, girls with Sahara skin! Hope this helps somehow xx


  9. 28th April 2018 / 11:20 am

    The only thing I knew about this was the poor shade range! Such a shame that you didn’t get on with it, my skin is combination and I have really dry patches around the edges of my face so I doubt this would work for me either! I’d really recommend the Born This Way foundation from Too Faced, it’s pricey but I think you’d like it!! xx Naomi

  10. 29th April 2018 / 8:44 am

    While this foundation sounds appealing all the mixed reviews I’ve heard regarding it which has put me off trying it. It’s quite a shame, there was so much hype around this foundation & I’m obsessed with the concealer.


  11. 29th April 2018 / 1:10 pm

    I feel your pain trying to get a foundation that doesn’t cling to dry patches, I’ve tried everything and found just using a BB cream that’s thick enough to be a foundation has helped. I’ve seen such great reviews of this but for people with combination skin or dry skin it doesn’t sound too good for it.

  12. Nina
    30th April 2018 / 4:18 pm

    Thanks for sharing your honest review. I haven’t tried this foundatin and probably I will never do, because sounds like it will not work for my skin .

    Nina’s Style Blog

  13. 30th April 2018 / 7:21 pm

    It’s such a shame it wasn’t amazing, I love Tarte but I’ve never tried any of their base products before xx

    Gemma • Gemma Etc . ❤️

  14. 2nd May 2018 / 5:32 pm

    I just bought this foundation, and while I have extremely dry skin, I put a serum underneath and I think it works well afterwards. It’s a lot lighter than some foundations I use, and I’m sorry to hear you aren’t a fan of it! I probably won’t repurchase either, but only cause I’m on the search for an AMAZING foundation, and this is not it. Great post Han xxx

    Melina | http://www.melinaelisa.com

  15. Emily
    2nd May 2018 / 7:58 pm

    Such a shame this didn’t work as you expected- especially as so many people have been raving about this! I don’t think this foundation would suit me, but I am keen to try the Shape Tape concealer!

    Emily xo

  16. 3rd May 2018 / 1:13 am

    I have not used Tarte foundation and probably wouldn’t due to the limited shade range, as my complexion changes 2-3 shades seasonally. I agree with Yiota, it’s 2018 they should get with the programme. Thanks for such a lovely review.

  17. Parie Joshi
    3rd May 2018 / 7:05 pm

    I remember when this first came out and the uproar over the shades, such a shame it doesn’t live up to the hype 🙁 xx

  18. 4th May 2018 / 10:48 pm

    It’s such a shame it wasn’t amazing, I heard a lot of good thing about the Tarte base products before xx Lovely Post!
    Sarah X

  19. 5th May 2018 / 10:30 pm

    Oh what a shame you don’t get on with it, I’ll follow your lead as I’m a fellow dry skinned gal. I hate it when foundation highlights my dry skin, plus I don’t like that dry, tight feel, I’m sure you can relate. I was tempted my the shape tape concealer but was put off by reviews. Ah well, hope you get on better with the Rimmel one!

    Samantha x


  20. 10th May 2018 / 11:45 am

    Shame it did not work out. I have dry skin, and I found some OK foundations, but I`m still looking for my holy grail. The lack of shades with this range was unacceptable, but I do believe that many people were quick to criticize Tarte, whilst ignoring other big brands. We should hold all brands accountable.

    Beauty Nerd

  21. 12th May 2018 / 9:03 am

    Ah it’s such a shame it made you dry, I have quite dry skin and so I’m always looking for a more dewy foundation so I think I’ll have to give this one a swerve.

    Rosy | Sparkles of Light Blog

  22. Velvet Blush
    18th May 2018 / 9:37 pm

    This is why I can’t wear foundation on a daily basis, (and I think concealers can do the job anyway). My skin is super dry too so it literally sucks the moisture out of the foundation leaving me with a patchy mess. The only foundation that I found looks okay is the Bourjois Healthy Mix, I also found the estee lauder double wear can look okay (I know a lot of people say it looks cakey because it’s full coverage, but you just need a tiny bit to massage into your cheeks). Saying that even concealer looks cakey on me, but a liberal amount of the superdrug own brand serums really help (they’re so hydrating!). It’s so frustrating that this didn’t work for you considering the price though xx

    Velvet Blush

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