Testing New Products: Tarte Fake Awake

Last night, I was scrolling through Rent the Runway, trying to find the perfect dresses for two weddings — one formal, one beachy — when I realized: it was 1 in the morning.

My alarm goes off at 6:15.

Needless to say, I was beat when I woke up this morning. Between half-closed eyes, I spotted it: my brand-new Tarte Fake Awake eye pencil that I’d recently picked up at the ULTA annual sale.


The Pros

I’ll admit, I was a bit hesitant as I carried this product to the register. I actually owned — and didn’t love — its predecessor, the Lights, Camera, Lashes Inner Rim Brightener. Lights, Camera, Lashes looked great and vibrant when I first put it on, but faded super-quickly and left me just as exhausted-looking as before I applied.

But still, with my 20-percent-off coupon in hand, I thought I’d give it a go.

And I’m so, so glad I did.

First, before you even open Fake Awake, you’ll notice that the packaging is very true to Tarte — that is to say, adorable. The lettering and accompanying starlight design are in a metallic gold, with the entire plastic tube a true-to-color nude. As a bonus, one end contains both a smudger (a feature I’ve admittedly ever used), and a built-in sharpener. Winning!

tarte fake awake sharpener

Cute (and functional) packaging aside, this product worked. And not in the temporary way Lights, Camera, Lashes did — I got serious wear out of this inner rim liner, even on watery eyes and after 5-6 hours.

It glides on smoothly, without too much hassle and zero eye-stinging. (And because this isn’t a traditional “pencil,” it didn’t tug on my waterline as some other brands have.) The color is vibrant, without being unnaturally vibrant or inappropriate in a professional (or fun!) setting.

I like a black or colorful waterline as much as the next gal, but when you’re going for a natural look? This is perf.

The Cons

I’m usually hyper-critical of my beauty products: some of the time, it’s because they suck. (And I pay good money for my own makeup, so I expect them to perform the way that they say they do.)

But in some cases, it’s because I have too-high expectations. Because I expect my makeup to make me into Katy Perry, or Kylie Jenner. Because my skin is still my skin, no matter what foundation I wear.

Strangely, I didn’t have those soaring expectations when I first put on Fake Awake — maybe it was because I’d been burned by a Tarte inner rim liner before. But, if you’re someone who thinks you’re going to have the same brilliance after 8 hours as you do after one, you’d be mistaken. This does wear. It just wears more slowly than any other inner rim product I’ve tried.

tarte fake awake packaging

The Bottom Line

Makeup is constantly evolving, and brands — for better or for worse — are always coming out with new products. No doubt there’ll be a day when some brand, somewhere, will make a super long-wearing inner rim liner that’ll last from tomorrow ’til the new year.

In the meantime, this Tarte product satisfies what I’m looking for: it’s long-wearing, comfortable, and makes my eyes pop.


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