Tarte's Smoldereyes waterproof Amazonian clay liners are a product I've wanted to share my opinion about for a long time. I received their Holiday 2012 value set, which included five of the jumbos and one bonus skinny pencil.
The variety in colors for this set was what really sold me. I was picturing doing really quick and easy looks with the Gold, Gunmetal, and maybe even the Champagne shade. I thought Ash Violet and Rainforest Black would be great for making my hazel eyes pop. And the bonus skinny black liner? Woohoo! Who doesn't love a creamy black eyeliner? A total classic. Right?
Swatched, left to right: Rainforest Black, Ash Violet, Gunmetal, Gold, Champagne, and Skinny in Black
Rainforest Black is actually more of a deep emerald.
Ash Violet is a medium purple with grey undertones.
Gunmetal is a pretty true steel grey.
Gold is a dark, well, gold!
Champagne is a pale highlight shade with pink undertones.
Black is self explanatory. This is the Skinny Smoldereye.
Alas, my predicted love affair with Tarte Smoldereyes never came to pass. While they are highly pigmented and have solid staying power, I find them so incredibly hard to work with that they have been banished to Beauty No Man's Land, a.k.a., the back corner of my hall closet where underperforming products go when I feel too guilty to toss them.
Why so bad, you ask? They don't blend well, at all. They will smudge a little bit for a smoky liner look, but they dry too quickly to buff them out on the lid. You end up with a very strong one-color-on-the-lid look, which most of us are not going for. The second issue - creasing! They crease very easily. Not cute.
Ironically, the skinny black Smoldereye was the most disappointing of all. This one feels creamier than the others, but this backfires and makes it very difficult to draw a precise line. Without fail, every time I use the black liner, I regret it. You can even see from the swatch that it really is not much thinner than the jumbo liners.
I think if you have larger eyes that can carry off the thick liner look that these pencils can deliver, you may like these - only if you aren't also trying to wear other shadows. I tried for months to like these more...but to no avail. Sorry, Tarte!
XO, Beauty Cents