Tarte's Gifted Amazonian Clay Smart Mascara is a Triple Threat

We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products—learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.


Tarte Gifted Amazonian Clay Smart Mascara

Tarte Gifted Smart Mascara Product Shot

Emily Algar/Design by Cristina Cianci

What We Like
  • Conditioning ingredients

  • Deep black pigment

  • Firm bristles to separate lashes

What We Don't Like
  • Could potentially transfer

Overall, this is a great product. It gives natural-looking volume, really nice length, good pigment, and feels like nothing on the lashes. Combined with the lash conditioning properties, it’s great for anyone looking to nourish and define their lashes simultaneously. 


Tarte Gifted Amazonian Clay Smart Mascara

Tarte Gifted Smart Mascara Product Shot

Emily Algar/Design by Cristina Cianci

We put Tarte's Gifted Amazonian Clay Smart Mascara to the test after receiving a complimentary sample from the brand. Keep reading for our full product review.

I just love mascara. It’s one of the most instantly gratifying beauty products out there. So you better believe I’m good for a road test, especially when Tarte’s iconic Gifted Amazonian Clay Smart Mascara is the subject. Designed to simultaneously nourish the lashes and deliver length and volume in spades, this is one of those makeup products that does more than its counterparts. The supposed hero ingredient is the brand’s signature Amazonian clay, as well as olive esters, vitamin B5, and vitamin C, all of which are known to hydrate and repair. 

But does it work? Will it give me the long, soft, fluffy lashes of dreams? There’s only one way to find out. Keep scrolling for the review. 

Tarte Gifted Amazonian Clay Smart Mascara

Best for: Volumizing, conditioning.

Byrdie Clean? Yes.

Price: $23.

About the brand: Tarte started in 2000 with the idea to combine glamorous makeup with good-for-you ingredients. Today, the brand offers cruelty-free cosmetics and hypoallergenic, vegan skincare. Every product is packed with naturally derived ingredients and is always formulated without parabens, phthalates, sodium lauryl sulfate, triclosan, and gluten.

About My Lashes: Thick and long

Disclaimer: I’ve got quite long, thick lashes naturally. Funnily enough I pulled them all out as a child, but praise the lord, they grew back to their original thickness. Now I like to treat them with absolute TLC, which is why the idea of a conditioning mascara (like Tarte) piqued my interest. Greedy as I am, I still want a product that delivers rich black pigment, clean volume, and brow-skimming length. A little bit of curl is a nice touch too. What I don’t want is for my lashes to stick together. Sounds simple enough, but it’s a difficult balance to master. 

Tarte however, comes pretty close.

How To Apply: Layer it on

I am often met with friends and colleagues who claim the mascara I recommended to them isn’t cutting the mustard. But when I ask them ‘how many coats’ and they reply with ‘two,’ I shake my head and explain the issue is not the mascara—it's their feeble application. I like to apply four to five coats minimum, layering while the product is slightly wet so things don’t get too chunky (the only exception here is tubing mascaras, in which case you should really only pull through lashes once). 

In the case of the Gifted mascara, I stand by this sentiment. Start at the base of the lash and drag through, using a little zig-zag motion to coat every lash. Keep layering until you’re happy. I’m a top lash only girl, but do what works for you. 

The Results: Great length and clean volume

Tarte Gifted Mascara_Before and After

Emily Algar/Design by Cristina Cianci

If you want to get technical, I would describe this as a natural to slightly dramatic mascara. It gives great length and nice, clean volume thanks to the firm bristles. The formula is super lightweight, so I found it couldn’t hold a curl too well, but otherwise, it’s really, really good. My lashes were long, dark, and thicker at the base. 

The real selling point here, though, is the conditioning element (the Gifted mascara contains Tarte’s signature Amazonian clay). I’m pretty skeptical when it comes to anything that claims to thicken and/or lengthen the eyelashes. I wouldn’t say this made mine longer or fluffier within the road test time frame—a fortnight—but they did feel super soft (not stiff or dry). Removal was easy, too, with an oil cleanser, so there was no need to tug at the lash line. I’ll give it another three months to see if any obvious growth occurs, but it’s definitely a nice touch. 

Start at the base of the lash and drag through, using a little zig zag motion to coat every lash. Keep layering until you’re happy. I’m a top lash only girl, but do what works for you.

Longevity: Not ideal

The only time this mascara falls down is in the case of a very humid, 15-hour day. I applied bright and early, and found by dinner it had moved slightly beneath my lash line. In its defense, I was sweaty and probably rubbed my eyes a few times, but good for those with oily lids to consider. 

The Value: Fairly priced

At $23, I think this mascara is quite reasonably priced. It’s a clean formulation, gives a beautiful lash look, and conditions at the same time. 

Similar Products: You've got options

Nars Climax Mascara: True to form, Nars' Climax Mascara ($24) is amazing. It has a similar wire-like comb to the Tarte, so you can expect a long, clean, defined finish. It’s not as nourishing, but the wear is better. Read our review here.

Milk Makeup KUSH High Volumizing Mascara: Like Tarte, Milk's Kush High Volumizing Mascara ($25) is free from common irritants, and contains hemp oil to condition the lashes. Expect long, soft, fluffy lashes thanks to the inclusion of heart-shaped fibers. 

Maybelline Great Lash Washable Mascara: Maybelline's Great Lash Wearable Mascara ($5) is iconic and for good reason. It gives believable volume, nice length and the perfect amount of inky black pigment. The price point is pretty sweet, too. 

Final Verdict

If you’re after a dramatic eye or find you’re prone to smudging, the Tarte Gifted mascara might not be quite right. But if you want a healthy, natural-but-enhanced look, it’s a goodie. 


  • Product Name Gifted Amazonian Clay Smart Mascara
  • Product Brand Tarte
  • Price $23.00
  • Color Black
  • Full Ingredient List Water/Aqua/Eau, cyclopentasiloxane, oryza sativa (rice) bran wax/ oryza sativa (rice) bran cera, hydrogenated olive oil stearyl esters, cera carnauba/copernicia cerifera (carnauba) wax/cire de carnauba, alcohol denat., propylene glycol, palmitic acid, triethanolamine, stearic acid, nbsp;candelilla cera/euphorbia cerifera (candelilla) wax/cire de candelilla, acacia senegal gum, VP/VA copolymer, polyvinyl alcohol, panthenol, aminomethyl propanediol, nbsp;ethylhexylglycerin, ascorbyl palmitate, kaolin, phenoxyethanol, isopropyl alcohol, iron oxides (CI 77499).

Related Stories