I had quite a treat a few weeks ago when Hard Candy invited me out to NuWorld Beauty in New Jersey to see where all the magic happens. And by magic I mean where all the formulations come together and the actual makeup is made and packaged. It was like an episode of I Love Lucy, except instead of chocolate, makeup was coming down the conveyer belt (and real professionals were handling it). It’s simply incredible to see what goes on behind the scenes and how many impressive machines and people it takes to bring you a perfectly pressed compact or evenly poured lipstick. I mean speaking of lipstick, check this out:
Roll me some of that color! Now most of you know Hard Candy, especially if you grew up in the 90s. I still remember the moment David Letterman asked Alicia Silverstone what nail polish color she was wearing (sky blue was a bit of a phenomenon back in 1995 as were pastels as a whole) and she said it was Sky by Hard Candy and immediately myself and every Clueless fangirl needed it. I didn’t realize until the brand made it’s big comeback in 2009 (it’s been through a few owners since the original brand launched in 1995), when NuWorld Beauty and Wal-Mart took over the cult favorite beauty brand that it was Silverstone’s endorsement of the brand that very night that put Hard Candy on the map.
Here we are in present day and the brand has exploded! Offering a vast product offering across makeup categories and for Fall they have some really incredible stuff at jaw-dropping prices!
So lets chat about what’s new! For starters they have Brows Now! Fiberized Brow Gel & Brow Highlighter ($6, available in two shades Light/Medium and Medium/Dark). I introduced my sister to a brow highlighter this year and it’s changed her life (apparently she doesn’t read my blog) and she had no idea how it works. For any of you that don’t, get ready to have your mind blown with one simple step: add a shimmery (anything from the creamy white to very light yellow shade range) cream eyeshadow under your brow line and watch how it opens your eyes and enhances your makeup look. And since everyone wants Cara Delevingne brows the fill in and volume power of Brows Now! is awesome. Give it a ‘tap, tap, roll’ motion and watch them fill in and get volume.
Next we have the Plumping Serum Gel Sticks Lipstick which are a steal! Really pretty pigment, they glide on beautifully and they are only $5! The lipsticks come in an awesome shade range of ten colors, many of which are in the pink range. They smell like cotton candy and feel really smooth and clean on.
Another product I’m really excited about are the Fierce Effects Shadow Duo Eyeshadow (ahem duo as you get a set of 2 for $5). Available in 5 sets (so 10 shades) the formula goes from loose powder to pressed on and just glides like butter! And it’s this beautiful soft formula that offers this really grand almost metallic sheen that I love!
I have to admit that I’m not really a body makeup person (although I like to have some on hand for when I do bigger appearances or have a big occasions), and I’ll tell you why. I find a lot of them messy, greasy, and expensive (plus I’m always nervous about getting them on my clothes). However, for $8 and after testing the formula I’m ready to change my tune. Sheer Glow comes in two new shades (pictured above) ‘in the buff’ which is more of a bronzer and ‘blushing babe’ which is more of a highlighter that has a luminous finish and can be used on the face as well. If you look on my arm in the photo above you can see a swatch and then each product smeared down my arm so you can see the finish. It has complete ease of application and goes on really clean. I’m more of bronzer girl for my body but I’m happy to have the highlighter on hand as well since I’m on a mission to learn how I can use these to contour me a toned body by summer.
After the success of their Top Ten Eye Shadow palettes, Hard Candy has launched 5 new palettes for fall, Top Ten Trendsetter Palette, much like the other Top Ten palette it features 10 shades and is priced at $6. Now I’ve only played with 3 of the palettes (pictured above) and the only exceptional one is the “Raining Men” palette. It’s velvety buttery formula has awesome pigment with a metallic sheen and the shades are stunning. Now, I say ‘only’ sparingly since at $6 for this many shades, in this packaging at this quality makeup they are all exceptional. However, taking price out of the equation and putting them against a lot of the prestige makeup out there, there’s something higher quality about the Raining Men shades and their formula. The Rated X palette is my second favorite, the colors aren’t super pigmented but for something more subtle and just a light tint it works well. And I’m passed my prime of a sparkle palette so (although I really like the shade range!) that is the Guilty Pleasure palette. The pigment isn’t naturally as strong as my photo above (I had to really work it to get that much color to make it really visible). If it was an easier and softer formula that delivered something stronger like Stila’s Metal Foil Shadows I’d be all over it! If you want to check out the other two palettes in the collection they are Aphrodisiac and Birthday Suit.
Lastly I am obsessed with their Highlight & Contour sticks ($6). I still need to swatch these out and better yet do a face post since they are easier to see on. It’s a two tone stick one side is a blush to bronzer shade and the other a highligher. The formula is creamy and highly blendable making contouring a breeze!
The other products new for fall that I still need to try are the Poppin Pigments ($6), Single & Loving It Eye Shadow ($3) and Ginormous Mascara ($6), which I’ll review soon! Here’s the complete overview of the products: