“I put Australia’s 2 most-talked-about concealers to the test”

Carli Alman review Tarte Shape Tape and Maybelline Instant Age Rewind

Do they live up to the hype?

Beauty Crew Editor / December 20 2018

2018 has come to an end and it’s been a big one, you guys. I’m tired, you’re tired; I think we could all collectively use one big nap. But until that happens, I’ve been shafted with some dark circles of the likes I’ve not really seen on myself before. 

I obviously needed to call in reinforcements, AKA some heavy-duty concealer. And while I have some much-loved favourites (I’ve spoken about my love for Nude by Nature Flawless Concealer here), I felt like I needed to up the ante. So, I turned to the two concealers that seem to be on *everyone’s* lips at the moment: The just-launched-in-Australia (but comes with a global reputation of being amazing) Tarte Shape Tape Contour Concealer, and Priceline’s number one seller, Maybelline New York Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles Concealer .

Also, here are some fun Internet facts about both Shape Tape and Instant Age Rewind: one Shape Tape sells every 12 seconds, and it's received a full five-star rating on the Tarte website (out of an impressive 8650 reviews), and Instant Age Rewind has got an average star rating of 4.5 here on Beauty Crew, and 4.4 on Google based on a whopping 24k reviews.

So do they live up to the hype? Have they really earned the reputations they’ve acquired?

Here’s what happened when I put both to the test. 

Tarte Shape Tape Contour Concealer

What they say:
The vegan concealer isn’t only super blendable, it also helps to instantly brighten and smooth skin. Here’s the description on Sephora Australia: “Get full coverage with a flawless matte finish with this concealer that covers all imperfections and doubles as a contour/highlighter. Its creamy, easy-to-blend formula won't flake or crease. Mango seed and shea butters nourish and help illuminate your skin for a lifted effect.”

What it was really like:
The first time I used this, I used it like I did any other liquid concealer – a few dots under my eyes, blended with my ring finger. I was neither here-nor-there about the results. I liked that it set quickly to a matte finish, but I could still see some darkness peeking through. Then I looked online to see how it should be applied and things changed. The next time I used it, I swiped the doe-foot applicator from corner to corner under my eyes, and created an upside-down triangle, filling it in. I then used a wet beautyblender to dab the formula into my skin. Once blended, I was pretty floored with the results. It was almost as if I had taken Facetune to my under-eye area. The only problem, however, were my lines. While the concealer did an amazing job to hide the dark circles and shadows, my lines were still there. That’s probably my bad though, I’m not so good with being diligent with eye cream, so I’ve now become a bit more focussed on not missing that step in my skin care routine. The good news though? The formula didn’t settle into the creases, so that’s a huge plus from me.

And how did it fare during the day? Pretty good, actually! My mascara didn’t smudge onto the concealer (I find it tends to do that with creamier formulas) and the colour didn’t fade or wear too badly. Come the end of the day, it still looked pretty good.

Does it live up to the hype?
I’d say the adulation it’s received is pretty well-deserved.

Maybelline New York Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles

What they say:
Here’s the down-low from Maybelline Australia: “This super-concentrated treatment concealer features a micro-corrector applicator to help instantly erase dark circles and fine lines.”

What it was really like:
For the purposes of my *very* scientific study, I used the same application technique as I did with the Shape Tape – lots of concealer in an upside-down triangle, all blended in with a wet beautyblender.

This formula felt lighter and creamier than the Shape Tape, and a little easier to blend because of it. In terms of the built-in applicator, I quite liked the sponge for the initial application itself, but found it easier to blend it in with a separate sponge.

Once the concealer set, it didn’t mattify quite like the Shape Tape, but it wasn’t too creamy either. I did notice my lines showing through (again, my bad), but I was happy to see that there was no creasing of the formula in the lines. The coverage was great, barely a hint of those shadows made an appearance, and it blended in beautifully with my foundation. It was another day of feeling like I’d put a smoothing filter under my eyes, so that was a big win.

As for how it wore during the day, it probably didn’t have as much stamina as the Shape Tape, but it definitely outperformed a lot of other concealers I’ve used in the past. And again, I was very pleased that the pigment from my mascara didn’t make its way under my eyes.

Does it live up to the hype?
I think it’s safe to say that if that many people are saying something is good, you can trust it. This one gets a huge tick of approval from me. 

So which one was better?

Trick question because they’re both really good (I know I sound like I’m sitting on the fence, but it’s true!). I think if you’re deciding between the two, there might be some other things that could come into play when deciding. The Maybelline concealer certainly wins in the budget-friendly department, but the Tarte Shape Tape has a thicker formula for those looking for serious coverage (plus it’s vegan, if that’s something that’s important to you). Tarte also comes in a much wider shade range, and as far as personal preference goes, I was a bit more partial to the doe-foot applicator than the sponge.

Final verdict: You truly can’t go wrong with either of them. 

Keen to see what other concealers are receiving rave reviews? We’ve rounded up 11 of the best concealers out there (Tarte and Maybelline included, of course).

Do you have a no-fail concealer for covering dark circles? Please share in the comments section below.

Main image credit: Supplied


Carli was BEAUTYcrew’s Editor from launch in 2016 until May 2020. You can find her words right here on BEAUTYcrew, and previously on beautyheaven.