Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Review: Hard Candy Hide & Glow Cheek ‘In Love’

Oh how misleading a product name can make a blog title post.

For the past few months, the brand Hard Candy has been getting a lot of love from beauty girls on the internet – mainly for their shadows. One day though, I saw a review from a very big beauty blogger singing the praises for a new HC product – their duo cheek tints. Hard Candy is currently sold at Wal-Mart, so I decided to pick one up on my next trip there, without bothering to look up other reviews on the product.

Being as I am very fair, I chose the lightest shade -

in love 315

A bright coral shade with very subtle silver shimmer.

3 Hard Candy In Love

A softer coral-pink with a gold sheen. A little Orgasm-esque, I thought.

4 Hard Candy In Love

The shades seemed very pretty from what I could tell in the packaging; and it’s very easy to overwhelm my skin color, so I thought this was playing it safe with these lighter shades. It turns out I played it too safe.
Even on me, this hardly shows up!

Color Payoff

Pigmentation on these is mediocre at best. In an attempt to show what the colors could be, I ran each shade hard across my arm – 12 times – to get this -

6 Hard Candy In Love swatch

Coral with sparkle on left; ‘Orgasm’ type shade on right.

And when I say hard, I mean harder than I would be willing to press into my face. This was solely to demonstrate how poor the color is even after excessive effort.

Out of interest, I decided to test just one swipe of these against one swipe of the NYC blushable in Big Apple Blush.

There’s really no contest is there?


The product packaging describes this as a cream cheek color. I’d describe it more of a solid gel.

I’d be fine with that if the product would set! Imagine the feeling of putting a thick gel on your face, and then that staying with you all day. It does give a ‘dewy’ sheen, but at the cost of your skin feeling very tacky and greasy for the day.

I actually had a hell of a time getting a good swatch photo because most of them came out like this from reflecting too might light. None of that sheen is from shimmer in the productIt's like the sheen you'd get putting a clear lipgloss on your skin.

5 Hard Candy In Love swatch

Some would say that to get that look, you have to contend with a more tacky finish; but I’d say there are many cream highlighters that would suggest otherwise.

Overall Thoughts

There is not one aspect of this product that I find impressive. Bad color and awful texture do not a happy girl make. It’s possible that if I’d tried a darker duo, I would have liked the result more; but for this one – if something isn’t pigmented enough to do something for me, then it won’t do much for anyone.

Granted I recognize that this is slated as a tint, not a blush, but that still suggests at least some color. I’ve seen some say that they like it since it’s more mistake proof than some other products because it’s impossible to get much color, but wearing nothing is also mistake-proof – and the two looks aren’t very different.

Also, you get very little of each shade. That in conjunction with how much you must use to get it to actually show up, I think someone would go through this extremely quickly. Even a $6 product isn’t a good deal if it doesn’t last at all.

If you really want a tinted look at a drugstore price, I’d suggest the NYC blushables (I’ve talked about them before) over these. Although they can be built up to be quite pigmented, it’s very easy to blend them out. If you only apply a small amount, you can easily get the tinted effect.

Final thoughts. Completely unimpressed. Don’t understand how this has gotten any positive feedback. Trashed.


  1. Goodness, what a miss! Is it just me or are you doing a lot of negative reviews lately? I agree that NYC blush sticks are pretty superb, given their low price. Thanks for the review - I've been tempted by a lot of Hard Candy reviews lately and this lessens it.

  2. Liz: haha I definitely do feel a pull to let people know when a product has really let me down - especially when I picked it up on someone else's recommendation. I hate feeling like I've wasted my money, so I guess I'm trying to help prevent it happening to other people :)
    I have seen a lot of good things about their shadows, including some good looking swatches so I'm not ready to discount the entire brand yet. Definitely not trying another one of these tints though.


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