It's been a little over a year since Tarte released its highly anticipated Shape Tape Foundation, a full-coverage base product inspired by the brand's best-selling Shape Tape Contour Concealer. But instead of receiving positive feedback over what many hoped would be a new fan favourite, the brand experienced a flood of backlash due to the seriously lacking and non-inclusive shade range. (There were initially 15 options total, with only three that catered to medium to deep skin tones.) "I don't appreciate the blatant erasure of a whole spectrum of people," popular beauty blogger Jackie Aina said in a video alongside Alissa Ashley "It doesn't even look like they tried."
Fast forward to one year later and now the brand is acknowledging that it messed up — big time. But rather than adding new shades to the existing lineup like it tried to do last February, the brand is starting over from scratch (much like Glossier did last week). "That wasn't the right way to release that foundation," said founder Maureen Kelly, who was fighting back tears at the editor launch event in New York City this morning. "This was so disappointing, we were moving so fast and doing so much. It was like, 'God, how did we miss the mark so badly.' Sometimes you just have to press the reset button."
So, that's exactly what the brand did. With an entirely new formula, bottle, and shade range, Tarte is pulling the Shape Tape foundation off the shelves and relaunching as Face Tape with the hopes of starting fresh. "Once you disappoint someone so deeply, you just have to start over," said Kelly. "It's about doing the right thing. Regardless of how much it was selling or regardless of how many shades we added to it, it didn't erase how it started."
After listening to feedback from thousands of comments and review videos, Tarte decided to launch its new Face Tape foundation in 50 shades with a range of undertones — five to be exact — and a new numbering system to help customers more easily find their match. Another complaint that customers had was the doe-foot applicator, which people found to be un-hygienic, so the new packaging will feature a pump dispenser. And even the formula itself is changing, with a matte texture, full coverage finish, and long-wear promise that better complements the Shape Tape concealer. Tarte also added hyaluronic acid for moisture, so it's less likely to dry out your face.
Tarte's Face Tape foundation will be released on February 17th but fans can look at the shades and sign up for launch notifications on tarte.com. And we'll be back with our honest review — on a range of skin tones — once we try the new foundation out for ourselves.