Tarte gave me my all-time favorite palette, and then totally reinvented it. I’m in eyeshadow heaven.
When Tarte came out with the original Clay Play palette, I knew I had to have it. I’m a neutrals girl through and through, and Tarte’s products are always the BEST quality. Also, with a few months of travel coming up on my calendar, I knew I needed (needed being a very loose term based on my makeup collection, but I digress) something a little more universal to save space in my carry-on.
Both palettes are meant to be all encompassing – a killer eyeshadow look paired with the best, powder contour money can buy. But, do you really need both? I break it down here:
Formula & Shade Selection: As reliable as ever, Tarte comes through with an incredibly easy-to-blend shadow with a color spectrum that is not only great to use with other palettes, but fabulous using just the palette in front of you (which I LOVE). If I buy an eyeshadow palette, I’m not trying to use four others to create a look – what’s the point? Especially when I’m travelling. Like, hi hoarder.
Clay Play Volume I features an epic matte selection – including the blackest black I’ve ever used (and I’ve used a LOT). A smokey eye of my dreams (see below) was seamless with these options. Creating a nice clean cut-crease was also super used friendly with the whiter-toned options. Their whites are just so opaque – I can’t even. The tones of the contour powders are also perfect – similar to the light/medium Kat Von D Shade & Light Palette (my former, holy-grail face product that has most recently been replaced with CP).
On the contrary, Clay Play Volume II has a beautiful balance of shimmers and mattes, but the same great formula. On top of all of that AND another subtle contour shade, it has a blush AND a highlight. Tarte highlights are absolutely to die for. This one is no exception. I’m going to do a whole instagram post on why inner corner highlight on your eye is my new obsession, and my favorite products to use there – this stuff will definitely be making the cut.
Scent: I don’t know what makes Tarte products smell so good (just kidding, I do it’s just artificial), but these smell heavenly. Obviously, not an important factor in making your decision, but always a nice touch. I don’t find that it’s overpowering either when you use the products (or even in the pan for that matter), rather just a nice fragrance if you’re into that sort of thing. If you’re not, you’ve been warned.
Packaging: The packaging for both of these is exactly the same. I thought this was so strange at first, but the mirror on this thing is so outstanding I find it really hard to complain. Like I can highlight, contour, do an eye shadow look AND have this kick ass mirror in here too?! ALERT THE MASSES. This is a traveling, make-up lovers DREAM. It’s not broken, don’t fix it – Tarte, I like your style.
The Winner: This was a hard one. They’re both genuinely amazing in their own way. To be honest, when I travel, I’m probably bringing both. BUT, if I had to choose one, two takes the cake. The highlighter and shimmer shades are just everything, and the looks you can create with this one are simply endless. But again, both are A+’s in my book.
Price: Clay Play 2 just hit the market at $46, but low-and-behold, Clay Play 1 is on GROUPON!!! AND it’s only $30 now! I almost hit the floor when I saw this – looks like Tarte discontinued it, so it can be found on most major discount sites for a limited time. I would be careful, though, about resellers that aren’t verified. Always be sure to review their return policy in case what you get is either a knockoff or just garbage.
FTA: Most links are affiliate links. This post is not sponsored, and all opinions are my own.