September 4, 2012

Tarte Aqua Gel Hydrating Lip Tint Review & Swatches

This was provided to me by a brand for review but all opinions expressed are my own

Tarte Aqua Gel Hydrating Lip Tint are available in a trio of three shades for $41 (was on sale for thirty something dollars) exclusively at

Made up of 50% water these sounds like a super hydrating lip tint well worth a splurge.

Take a look!

I dunno why but after paying QVC shipping these feel like a terribly big indulgence as it tips the scales at near $50 for all three Lip Tints. Ok so broken down you’re looking at around $15 per a tint which isn’t TOO too much to pay but…I wasn’t keen on the formula and being force into a three set purchase not knowing the formula might also prove a huge investment for some.

I might be more inclined to rave these and say “YES YES!” get all three if the formula was rave-able but sadly it wasn’t.

These are housed in thin tubes and come in three shades. You get three shades in the set so if choosing a shade is a bit of a conundrum for you, no worries, you get ’em all.

Colors Include:

  • Splendid (nude pink shade)
  • Desired (crimson red shade)
  • Graceful (berry pink shade)

Pigmentation is fairly decent here and you can get sheer color pay off on some of the lighter shades but enough of color to see you have some sort of tint on lips. Where as darker shades, such as Desired, have medium color pay off.

My issues lay with the formula. A combination of the name, Aqua Gel, and the promise of 50% water in the formula makes them sound incredibly hydrating. They have a cool, refreshing feel on lips that’s very pleasant however, when it comes to moisture I didn’t feel like they had any. The formula feels semi-matte to my mouth and they lack any shine or glossiness to go along with that 50% water claim.

On top of the lack of moisture, the wear is very uncomfortable since with prolonged wear they seem to take away from the natural moisture found in lips. Pretty ironic for something that calls itself a “drink of water for your pout”.

I rarely dislike a Tarte product but sadly these Aqua Gel Hydrating Lip Tints are a terribly confusing product overall. They apply like a balm of sorts but lack the moisture of one with a formula that’s more matte than hydrating and full of moisture.

Unfortunately, these just weren’t what I expected and I didn’t like them at all.

Available exclusively at

Tried ’em?

Do share!

This was provided to me by a brand for review but all opinions expressed are my own

About the Muse

Isabella MuseIsabella is just an average everyday geeky girl who doesn’t blend her eyeshadow correctly, wears too much blush, and hopes she never finds her holy grail products because she likes the thrill of the chase so much. Her mission is to bring you super honest reviews on makeup, skincare, fragrance and all things beauty. She’s in no way an expert on the topic and she sure as hell isn’t a super model. But she’s passionate about makeup and is seeking like-minded individuals that like pina coladas, getting caught in the rain, and ones that enjoy spending hundreds of dollars at Sephora without feeling buyer’s remorse. If you’re that person feel free to reach out and leave a comment or follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Bloglovin‘.

Leave a Comment


  • Cindy

    The colors look pretty, but sheesh 50 bucks for the trio? My wallet cries at the thought.

  • Cassie

    Ew, they look so dried up… too bad Muse 🙁 Especially if they were spendy! I’ve never seen an undesirable Tarte product but these are just gross looking!


    what an expensive bust!! 🙁 Oy vey it must sting even more because you had to buy 3!! Can you return things to QVC? and get the 50$ back?

    • the Muse

      thankfully these are press samples if I purchased them I’d def return as QVC has a most excellent return policy!

  • AmandaM

    Sigh…I totally caved and bought this set from QVC. I just can’t seem to resist the siren song of Tarte newness from QVC! I was hoping they would be nice and moisturizing 🙁

    • the Muse

      le sigh no…tell me what you think I’m curious if you have the same experience!

  • Lorraine

    Thanks for the review. I was so tempted when I saw these on QVC but now I’m glad I resisted. Sounds like they should have kept the aqua-gel idea to my beloved eyeliners that have vanished without a trace. 🙁

    • the Muse

      aw sorry your liners disappeared lorraine, sigh, hate when I love something and it disappears.

  • OrangeLipstickBlog

    What a bummer! Thanks for the review so I’ll know to avoid ’em!

  • Marilyn @ Lipgloss and Spandex

    Aw, that sucks. I was hoping these would be awesome–they sound so promising.

  • Tiffany Martin

    AWW, it’s too bad you don’t like them those colors look really pretty.

    I’m sad you didn’t photograph them on you I always enjoy seeing what they look like on ya!

    • the Muse

      sorry Tiffany! they kinda looked unflattering and dry on my lips so I didn’t bother :-/

  • Michou

    Oh what a pity… I tend to drool when I see the words gel and lips in the same sentence (I suffer from EXTREMELY dry lips so gels/sheers/etc are my faves). And considering how much I love Tarte lipsurgence sticks… this is a real let down. OH well, guess they can’t do everything right…

  • Majick

    Colors look really pretty but I hate when a “drink” for your lips is this type of formula. What’s funny is, there is another one called lip drink and I think it’s Jane Iredale but don’t quote me and that was terribly drying for me as well. Although I admit to being sensitive to certain ingredients in some lippies.