Clé de Peau Beauté's Concealer vs. Tarte WP 12 Hour - Is Squalane the Key?

Clé de Peau Beauté's Concealer vs. Tarte's Amazonian Clay Waterproof 12-hour Concealer

. . . Cle de Peau concealer - Old vs. New
. . . is Squalane the key to concealer success?
. . . Is Tarte a dupe for Cle de Peau's stick concealer?

Warning: Cosmetic Geekery follows.

TL;DR Summary:
  • Clé de Peau's concealer has won Allure's Beauty Award for 14 years. 
  • CdP was reformulated a few years ago and the squalane was replaced with a nearly identical synthetic called SilkFlo 364 (Hydrogenated Polydecene).
  • Do you miss old CdP concealer formula? Try pure squalane as your primer.  Try applying a very tiny amount of squalane directly on the skin (allow to soak in) before applying the new CdP formula.  (A good one to try -  Peter Thomas Roth's Oilless Oil Pure Squalane.)
  • Squalane also works well under other concealers, especially the very long wear, waterproof formulas, to keep colors truer and to soften fine lines. Use sparingly and set concealer with setting powder.
  • Or, try Tarte's Squalane-based Amazonian clay waterproof 12-hour concealer. The formulations appear and feel very similar.
  • Tarte is also a great choice if you can't find a color light enough in the Clé de Peau version.
  • If you want a drier, matte finish try Clé de Peau.
  • If you want a satin, slightly more emollient finish - try Tarte.

Clé de Peau concealer - Old vs. New

CdP replaced the squalane in their older formulation with SilkFlo 364 (Hydrogenated Polydecene) likely because it's nearly identical chemically and performance-wise to squalane. But because it's synthetic, it doesn't have the batch-to-batch variance that naturally derived ingredients do. When you're charging this much for a product, it pays to be consistent.

There are other differences between the formulations, however.

The new formulation has:
  • Increase in Titanium Dioxide to number one ingredient. Likely increases opacity. (Did not produce flashback in flash photographs that I took, however.)
  • Triethoxysilyethyl Polydimethylsiloxyethyl Dimethicone - skin conditioning agent.
  • Rosa Roxburghii Fruit Extract: Chestnut Rose - a tonic ingredient, antioxidant properties.
  • Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract - green tea extract, antioxidant agent.
  • Cherry Leaf extract - skin conditioning agent.
  • Phytosteryl Macadamiate - ester of phytosterol and the fatty acids derived macadamiaseed oil. Skin conditioning agent.
  • Barium Sulfate - whitening (in terms of the product, not of the skin) and opacifying agent in cosmetics. 
  • Synthetic Fluorphlogopite - viscosity increasing agent.
  • BHT - preservative.

That's a lot of differences but the major ingredients are largely the same. The biggest change, other than the Titanium Dioxide increase, is the replacement of natural squalane with the synthetic SilkFlo 364.

Could squalane still make a difference in how well the Clé de Peau concealer works? A lot of hardcore Cle de Peau users claim squalane was the key and the new formulation's performance and texture suffered for its replacement.

Squalane - the key to concealer performance?
I just happen to have a bottle of squalane to experiment with!

Peter Thomas Roth sells a straight Squalane "Oilless-Oil" derived from sugar cane. I love the stuff. I often use it instead of primer because it works so well, and it doesn't ball up the way some primers do. So what would happen if I put just a tiny amount of squalane under the concealer? It would have to be a very thin layer since the concealer already has a replacement emollient for the squalane. But the CdP concealers do run just a little bit dry on me. So I tried it out. Pictures below.

Short answer: CdP + Squalane = Awesome. (If you have dry skin.)
The CdP concealer is beautiful with a little squalane underneath. The color stays just slightly truer (on my skin that means a little lighter), spreads and melts over the skin beautifully, and still doesn't crease on me. (However someone with oilier skin might have problems.) Pretty impressive. Apparently squalane works well in concealer especially under the eyes, if you're not very oily.

I even tried it under my other long-wear concealers and the results were the same. Truer color, less crepiness under my eyes. The trick was to apply it very sparingly, and to set the concealer with setting powder. Personally, I use Laura Mercier's Secret Brightening Powder.

Clé de Peau's "Ivory" Stick Concealer on both the left and right - right swatch has squalane underneath. Notice the color looks lighter (and less matte.) That is closer to the color as it comes out of the tube. It didn't oxidize darker when I had squalane underneath.

Clé de Peau's "Ivory" Stick Concealer on both the left and right - right swatch has squalane underneath. This is after several minutes and blending out a bit more. The color still appears truer with the squalane underneath - and doesn't settle into the lines on my hand. If a drier texture is desired, skip the squalane.

Tarte's Amazonian Clay Waterproof 12-hour Stick Concealer vs. Clé de Peau Beaute's Stick Concealer

Tarte Formulations vs. Clé de Peau Beaute's - notable differences:

Tarte boasts loads of antioxidants like lysine, Vitamins A, E, and skin conditioning agents such as cholesteryl/ behenyl/ octyldodecyl lauroyl glutamate, candelilla wax instead of carnuba, plus sodium chondroitin sulfate which is a soothing, anti-inflammatory skin conditioning agent.

If you're looking for a skin care boost in your concealer, Tarte's may be a winner. I haven't used it long enough to tell any longer lasting benefits, but I will update if I see anything.

Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof 12-Hour Stick Concealer in "Fair-Light", and "Light" vs. Clé de Peau Stick Concealer in "Ivory" and "Beige". Unblended.

Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof 12-Hour Stick Concealer in "Fair-Light", and "Light" vs. Clé de Peau Stick Concealer in "Ivory" and "Beige". Blended.
If you are noticing in the pictures that the Tarte colors "Fair-Light" and "Light" look very similar, you're not alone. I can hardly tell them apart. The good news is that I can wear them both. "Light" does a bit better under my eyes with its slightly peach/pink shade, and the yellower "Fair-Light" does great throughout the rest of my complexion.

The situation is similar with the Clé de Peau though the color differences are much more pronounced. The "Ivory" does well all over my face, while the "Beige" does best right under my eyes to mask my dark circles.

Ingredients Lists and Comparisons

 - Purple, bold - new ingredients to this formulation. See list above "New Formulation has:" for details about the new ingredients.
 - Black, bold - ingredients in both formulations.

Current Cle de Peau Beaute Concealer:

Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891), Hydrogenated Polydecene (synthetic form of squalane called SilkFlo), Cyclomethicone, Mica, Kaolin, Iron Oxides (Ci 77492), Diphenylsiloxy Phenyl Trimethicone, Paraffin, Sodium Magnesium Silicate, Iron Oxides (Ci 77491), Polyethylene, Sorbitan Sesquiisostearate, Glycerin, Barium Sulfate, Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax, Microcrystalline Wax (Cera Microcristallina), Peg-10 Dimethicone, Phytosteryl Macadamiate, Iron Oxides (Ci 77499), Water (Aqua), Synthetic Fluorphlogopite, Butylene Glycol, Polysilicone-5, Tocopherol, Fragrance, Tocopheryl Acetate, Aluminium Hydroxide, Alcohol, Aluminium Distearate, Dimethicone, Triethoxysilyethyl Polydimethylsiloxyethyl Dimethicone, Rosa Roxburghii Fruit Extract, Sodium Acetylated Hyaluronate, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Prunus Speciosa Leaf Extract, Bht.

Old Cle de Peau Beaute Concealer Formulation:
Squalane, Cyclomethicone, Kaolin, Phenyl Trimethicone, Paraffin, Sodium Magnesium Silicate, Polyethylene, Sorbitan Sesquisostearate, Carnuba, Mictocrystalline Wax, Water, Dimethicone Copoyol, Cholesteryl Hydroxsterate, Glycerin, Boron Nitride, Polysilicone-5, Tocopheryl Acetate, Tocopherol, Fragrance, Aluminum Hydroxide, Aluminum Disterate, Simethicone, Methicone, Ascorbyl Dipalmiate, Soy Sterol, Sodium Acetylhaluronate, Titanium Dioxide, Mica, Iron Oxides

Tarte Waterproof 12 Hour Concealer Ingredients: 
Bold Blue - shared or similar ingredient with current or old CdP Concealer

Squalane, polyethylene, kaolin, paraffin, cyclopentasiloxane, PEG/PPG-18/18 dimethicone, phenyl trimethicone, polyethylene/ dimethiconol copolymer, euphorbia cerifera (candelilla) wax, water, silica, lecithin, glycerin, cholesteryl/ behenyl/ octyldodecyl lauroyl glutamate, pentaerythrityl tetraisostearate, silica dimethyl silylate, sodium chondroitin sulfate, atelocollagen, butylene glycol, sodium hyaluronate, magnesium chloride, potassium chloride, sodium chloride, zinc chloride, lysine, retinyl palmitate, tocopherol, tocopheryl acetate, tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate, phenoxyethanol, mica. (+/-): Titanium Dioxide  (CI 77891), iron oxides (CI77491, CI77492, CI77499), ultramarines (CI 77007), chromium oxide greens (CI 77288), chromium hydroxide green (CI 77289)

Ingredient information sources:
Truth in Aging:
Cosmetics Info:
Paula's Choice:

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