October 24, 2014 | 1460 users online

Powder - Tarte - Smooth Operator Micronized Clay Finishing Powder

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rated 4.2(118 reviews)

  • Average Rating: 4.2
  • 77% would buy again
  • Package Quality: 3.3
  • Price: $$$

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rated 4 of 5 on 4/30/2013 7:02:00 PM More reviews by white05mustang

Age: 19-24 Skin: Oily, Fair, Cool Hair: Brunette, Curly, Fine Eyes: Green

I purchased this product after reading all the rave reviews, not only on here but other sites as well. I had previously been using the Bare Escentuals mineral veil for YEARS and just was not happy with the oil control any more. I have been using the smooth operator for just a little over two weeks along with my NARS foundation and primer and it is just an okay product to me. It doesn't keep me matte all day as some people say, but I do have super oily skin... the type that I can wash my face at night and be an oil slick when I wake up the next morning. I had been getting about 5 hours of oil control with the mineral veil and I get about 8 with the smooth operator. It's a slight improvement This may seem like a lot of matte time to some people, but I am a nurse and work 12-hour shifts so I don't have time for touch-ups. Looks like I am still looking for my HG mattifying powder for those 12-hour shifts.

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rated 5 of 5 on 4/24/2013 4:24:00 PM More reviews by Shortcourt0

Age: 19-24 Skin: Acne-prone, Fair, Cool Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Fine Eyes: Brown

I love this powder! I tend to switch back and forth between this and the MUFE HD powder but for a few bucks cheaper I think the Tarte one works just as well. I have a small sample jar that I have been using for the past few months and it has lasted me awhile so a little goes a long way. I love how it mattifies my skin and controls oil throughout my work day. It always makes my skin feel really soft, I have to remember to not touch my face too much though. Works well and lasts a long time. I apply it using a big fluffy brush that I dab onto my skin and push into my pores then I gently use the brush to swipe off any excess. I think it is a very good powder, there are a few cheaper options that I haven't tried yet so I will keep that in mind when I run out. I do really like the Aqualilies packaging though so if it still is available when I run out I might splurge on that.

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rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 3/20/2013 2:22:00 PM More reviews by harls321

Age: 36-43 Skin: Acne-prone, Medium, Neutral Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Coarse Eyes: Brown

It is a must have for my oily skin. Takes away the shine and smooths out my pores. Gives an airbrush finish. Unfortunately like all of the AC products it causes my skin to break out.

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rated 5 of 5 on 3/20/2013 8:29:00 AM More reviews by yuklin

Age: 36-43 Skin: Sensitive, Medium, Warm Hair: Black, Straight, Medium Eyes: Brown

This product really does do what it says it is going to do, you do not have have to use a lot a little in the lid and take your kubuki brush or any brush and dust over your entire face and boom lines disappear and the oil is gone. Excellent product.

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rated 4 of 5 on 3/18/2013 10:55:00 PM More reviews by afishcalledamy

Age: 25-29 Skin: Oily, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Red, Other, Fine Eyes: Blue

I really love this powder. It fulfills almost everything that it promises. My skin is extremely oily, and prior to switching to Smooth Operator I had to blot constantly. Now, I use smooth operator to set my foundation and it keeps my skin matte for most of the day. I usually have to apply a little more after about 6 hours, but compared to the hourly blotting that I had to to before, this is nothing. Additionally, I like that this product is formulated without talc. I have very sensitive eyes, and products containing talc are quite irritating, but I had a lot of difficulty finding a setting powder that was talc free. Well, this is definitely it! As far as the claim that it will minimize the appearance of pores, I'm not sure about that. I have very large pores, and while it does give the illusion of minimizing the appearance of them WHILE I'm wearing it, I'm not sure that it truly affected my actual pore size.

My one complaint about this product, and the reason I'm deducting a lipstick, is the packaging. You can dispense the product by pressing down next to the hole in the top, but I've found that this dispenses WAY more product than necessary, and sometimes creates an inconvenient mess. This is an expensive product, and I hate to waste any of it. Usually, I end up tapping the container on its side to dispense product out of the tiny hole and into the lid. A very small amount comes out at a time. There is not happy medium. I wish that this packaging had been designed with a few more holes in the top, that might make it a little easier to dispense.

That said, overall I really love this product. It does a wonderful job setting my makeup and controlling oil. I'd recommend it to anyone who has problems with oily skin. It really does an amazing job and I will continue to purchase it, in spite of the annoying packaging.

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rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 3/5/2013 1:06:00 AM More reviews by sweetdase

Age: 25-29 Skin: Sensitive, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Black, Straight, Fine Eyes: Brown

I bought this product based on FrmHeadToToe's rave about this. The powder is white and is very fine with no scent to it. I usually apply it over my foundation, bb cream, or mineral foundation as a finishing powder and to absorb oil throughout the day. It hasn't broke me out which is good. I've probably been using it for half a year now or so and I quite like it. I'm Asian skin tone around NC30-35 and it works well for me. However, I can notice that if you apply too much, it'll make your face white and may not be too suitable for darker skin tones or people who are pale in general as it would be make you look more pale. Overall, I think this is a good finishing powder on top of foundations. I like that the packaging has a small hole in the middle, enough to dump out a good amount into the lid to use each time. Unlike other the Mineral Veil for Bare Minerals which has an excessive amount of holes and you end up dumping out too much per time that you need to put some back in to the jar. The powder is fine that enough dumps out but if there's too many holes, then there's too much product coming out. Overall, this is a good finishing powder and would most likely repurchase, but my desire to try new products is overwhelming :)

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rated 5 of 5 on 2/23/2013 7:19:00 PM More reviews by rkaybee

Age: 19-24 Skin: Oily, Fair-Medium, Not Sure Hair: Black, Other, Other Eyes: Green

I got this as a sample so I'm not really aware of the price, BUT aside from that I LOVE this SO much. I put it on my nose and forehead usually (small swipes) and blend it in with a fluffy brish to control oil and it does abbbbsolute wonders. I use it to set my under eye concealer as well. The packaging does blow but seeing how well this works for me I'm not too concerned. Awesome powder. Oh, and the smaple has lasted me ove 4 months now!

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rated 2 of 5 top reviewer on 2/22/2013 9:14:00 PM More reviews by Mollieismehehe

Age: 18 & Under Skin: Combination, Fair, Cool Hair: Brown, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Brown

I got this in a mini size in the Tarte Carried Away Collectors set. It's a paper white powder that is supposed to come out of these two little holes in the top. It's almost impossible to get out!! So that's really annoying and I didn't really see a difference when I put it on after my makeup..UGH.

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rated 2 of 5 top reviewer on 1/8/2013 7:47:00 PM More reviews by scs2dd

Age: 19-24 Skin: Sensitive, Fair-Medium, Warm Hair: Red, Straight, Medium Eyes: Blue

EDIT: I have to admit I was still honeymooning when I wrote that review, which I know is bad and I should not do. Turns out semi-closeup/closeup flash photography makes me look like I rubbed a brick all over my face and the dryness of the powder absolutely shrivels my skin up in the winter and causes mad nose peeling (my original review was in summer, I think). I like the dewy look more now anyway, so I've been using it up by dusting it just on my forehead, which is actually pretty great at keeping oil from greasing up my bangs without sucking the life out of my skin. No, I won't repurchase just for that as my obscenely large tub of Laura Mercier Translucent Powder does the job too and there's no way I can use it all up before I die if I only use it to set undereye concealer.
This is my first time using a white setting powder rather than tinted-- I've used Lancome, Estee Lauder, and Clinique (the last one oxidizing on my face, yikes) and none of them can hold up to how matte this powder is. It is extremely, incredibly matte. The texture is as fine as cornstarch and doesn't feel excessively dry on my face. Pressing on both sides of the hole or turning the closed pan upside down and giving a few firm taps are good ways to get the powder out, and you only need a little. I apply it using a kabuki brush (apparently I'm doing it wrong but the press-and-roll is the one thing I'm too lazy for), blend it well and there's not a trace of its former whiteness. It stays invisible in flash photography and seems to keep oil away for maybe an hour longer than normal for me. I can't comment on its claim to shrink pores as I haven't used it as long as instructed yet, but my pores do seem buffed away when I wear it. However, my Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick acts out when I try to brush it on after the powder; the shimmer just doesn't want to stick. A cream/liquid highlighter or silicone gel might work better with this product. I'll certainly repurchase!

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rated 5 of 5 on 1/7/2013 3:03:00 PM More reviews by VintagePro

Age: 36-43 Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Blond, Other, Other Eyes: Green

I'll never buy another powder. Having just turned 40, I've noticed that all my old powders are making the very tiny lines under my eyes look giant. THIS powder makes them look non-existent! It's great for my oily skin, but doesn't sap moisture from the dry patches, and it really lasts -- I never have to touch it up during the day.

It's VERY fine; so fine that when you dab your brush in it, you can barely see any product on the brush. A little goes such a long way that I don't mind the price because it lasts forever. I'm not nuts about the one hole in the container, but it's worth putting up with for what the product does.

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