Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops Review, Photos, Swatches

Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops
Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops

Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer DropsCover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops ($42.00 for 0.50 fl. oz.) is a medium-dark, coppery-brown with warm, red undertones and fine gold, pink, and copper pearl. Wet 'n' Wild Go With the Glow (P, $5.99) is less shimmery, warmer (95% similar). Cover FX Candlelight (P, $34.00) is more shimmery, lighter (95% similar). ColourPop Glo Up (LE, $8.00) is less shimmery, warmer (90% similar). Kevyn Aucoin Sunlight (P, $52.00) is less shimmery, lighter (90% similar). Anastasia Bronzed (LE, ) is more shimmery, warmer (90% similar). The Estee Edit Beachy (LE, ) is less shimmery, cooler (90% similar). ColourPop Santos (LE, $8.00) is less shimmery, darker (90% similar). theBalm Betty-Lou Manizer (P, $24.00) is lighter, warmer (90% similar). BH Cosmetics Carli Bybel Deluxe Edition #21 (LE, ) is more shimmery (90% similar). Bobbi Brown Bronze (P, $46.00) is more shimmery (90% similar). Bobbi Brown Sunkissed Glow (P, $48.00) is lighter (90% similar). MAC Gilty Bronze (LE, $29.50) is darker (90% similar). Makeup Geek Ignite (P, $20.00) is more shimmery (95% similar). Fenty Beauty Penny4UThots (P, $36.00) is darker, cooler (85% similar). Becca Luna (6.5) (-, $30.00) is less shimmery, darker, cooler (85% similar). ColourPop Poolside (P, $8.00) is less shimmery, lighter, warmer (85% similar). Too Faced Sun Bunny #1 (PiP, ) is less shimmery, warmer (85% similar). ColourPop Avalon (P, $8.00) is more shimmery, warmer (85% similar). Laura Mercier Seduction (P, $45.00) is darker, warmer (85% similar). Becca Strength (P, $38.00) is more shimmery, more muted, warmer (85% similar). Top 20 dupes listed, see the rest. See comparison swatches / view dupes side-by-side.

Custom Enhancer Drops is a liquid formula that can add a “highlighting, strobing, or bronzing effect” to your favorite liquid products or used alone on top of (or underneath) your other products (including powder); two of the six shades are bronzing and four are more shimmery/metallic for highlighting. It is a buildable coverage product, so that you can use as many or as few drops as desired for the effect (and it will depend on how you use it; mixing with a moisturizer for all-over may require less product than spot application on cheeks after other makeup is applied!). These are similar to formulas like Giorgio Armani Fluid Sheer (runs a bit sheerer overall, less buildable), Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector (Liquid) (much sheerer), and NARS Illuminators (thicker, sheerer, usually contains larger shimmer/glitter particles). The major difference is the intensity of the pearl and buildability in coverage (easier to get to full coverage but still easy to retain sheer coverage).

What’s neat about these is that they are versatile as you want them to be; they really do perform well mixed with various liquid and cream products (moisturizer, foundation, tinted moisturizer, primer) while also working under and over makeup, and are buildable from sheer to opaque coverage. Initially, the formula might seem incredibly pigmented, but the thin, liquid consistency naturally creates a sheerer layer as soon as you work it across the skin. That being said, unless you’re mixing with a base product, one drop is likely overkill for spot application.

These have a strong sheen but very fine shimmer, so it produces more of a pearly, glowing effect on the skin–lightly dewy with moderate shine and some noticeable shimmer. They dry down within 10-15 seconds of blending out the product and feel like a powder but with better hold (I get little transfer if I touch the area with this applied, but if I rub vigorously, I will get product to move), so the sheen you see is the result of the reflective quality of the pearl not that the product remains wet. You can, however, build these up to opaque coverage, and at that level, some of the shimmery shades can emphasize the texture of the skin. The formula also wore well on me, ranging from eight to ten hours with minimal signs of fading. I’d expect that this formula will work for someone who likes all-over luminosity and likes adjusting and mixing highlighters with their base products or enjoys moderate-to-metallic highlighters with luminous, shiny, pearly finishes or likes all-over warmth (in the case of the bronzing shades) with a satin-to-matte finish. If you like barely-there shimmer or tend not to like noticeable shine, I would try it in person or look for another type of product.

Candlelight had buildable coverage that ranged from semi-sheer to opaque, depending on application and amount of product used. For reference, one droplet on the back of my hand covers that area (about 3″ x 3″) with semi-opaque coverage. I liked a dab of the applicator against the back of my hand, rather than a drop, if I was applying on targeted areas, like cheekbones or down the bridge of my nose, as a drop was far more product than needed. For mixing, I found one drop to be sufficient for a noticeable all-over glow that didn’t read metallic or like I highlighted my entire face, while two or more drops became more noticeable and also added color to my skin tone. The consistency is thin, easily spread across the skin or mixed in with other products, and blends well as it is drying down. Once it dries down, it’s not very blendable, so I recommend working one area at a time when using it alone (either under or over makeup) as there is some time to work but not a lot (this is the only downside to the product, but it is likely part of why it is longer-wearing). On me, the color lasted for nine hours when applied over bare skin. I did not find it shortened the wear of other products when I mixed it in and applied all over.

Here’s an in-depth look at how I’ve used and trialed all the shades:

Alone: I’ve patted them over bare skin, liquid foundation, and liquid foundation with setting powder on top. For best results, I like to tap my brush against the applicator (not even using the droplet applicator to get a drop out) and then stipple the product onto the skin. I tend to apply both my bronzers and highlighters more along the cheek areas, so I would stipple a few times along my cheeks or cheek bones and then lightly buff in small circles. It worked equally well just dabbing my fingertips against my skin and using the side of my fingertip to sweep and blend the product out. I was particularly impressed by how well it applied over powder, as the sheerer, smooth texture didn’t disrupt base products and move foundation or turn the area patchy. When testing for wear, I used its longevity on bare skin as my major measure for the rating, but I did wear the shades mixed in and layered with a multitude of products to ensure that the formula wasn’t prone to shortening the wear of other products.

Mixed with Primer: I tried it with both water and silicone-based primers, and I had no preference for one over the other with respect to these drops. I used one to two drops for all-over luminosity; I preferred one drop myself, as it gave me a dewier finish that wasn’t over-the-top for my preference. If you wear a lighter-coverage base on top of primer, mixing with primer could work for all-over glow/warmth, but if you wear light-medium or heavier coverage, I would suggest mixing with your foundation or applying on top of your foundation as it gets lost under heavier coverage.

Mixed with Foundation: I tried it with tinted moisturizer, sheer coverage foundation, medium coverage foundation, and full coverage foundation. In general, heavier coverage foundations are a bit thicker than the ultra sheer formulas. I found one to drops was sufficient with tinted to medium coverage formulas, while full coverage was less receptive–it made the foundation dewier but wasn’t as luminous as with lighter coverage foundations. If I wore full coverage foundation, I preferred this patted on top at the end, rather than mixed.

Mixed with Moisturizer: Like primer, this method works well when you skip foundation or wear lighter coverage foundation. I can imagine this combination working well for those with flatter or more matte skin naturally, as it gives noticeable luminosity and dewiness. While I didn’t personally like the level of sheen it gave my face when mixed with moisturizer, I loved it for body–particularly on shoulders and decolletage. It is also gorgeous on legs. I really liked mixing one of the highlighting shades with a bronzing shade for a little color, warmth, and sheen on legs.

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Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops
Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops

Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops
Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops

Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops
Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops

Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops
Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops

Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops
Cover FX Candlelight Custom Enhancer Drops

We hope you'll consider supporting Temptalia by shopping through our links below. Thanks!
Makeup Look
On face:
  • Tarte Rainforest of the Sea Foundation
  • Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder
On eyes:
  • Charlotte Tilbury Seductive Beauty Palette
  • Zoeva Good Karma Eyeliner
On lips:
  • Too Faced Honey Bear La Creme
We hope you'll consider supporting Temptalia by shopping through our links below. Thanks!


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The swatch itself looked so pretty but once blended it looked really red and coppery. The highlighters are really interesting though! I’ve seen some youtubers use it and it looks way more natural than I anticipated.

This looks like a beautiful product. I especially like your idea of using it on legs, because my legs are paler than the rest of me. Maybe a couple of drops per calf mixed with Supergoop Forever Young body butter SPF 40?

I bet that would work well! And highlighting/bronzing the body is one way to get through the drops faster than for face, lol!

I’ve been wondering about this product for the longest time! My Custom Drop started getting gloopy on me so I was hesitant to buy this considering that it would take ages to finish. This shade looks amazing on you!

Hi Stephanie,
I’ve been considering buying the Custon Cover Drops. How long after you bought yours did you notice that it had gone gloopy?

That color is gorgeous! I need these in my life. They are always sold out on Sephora’s website. I’ll have to try and check in store.

I heard some stores have been getting new stock in, but I know that I’m hearing more like September for online retailers!

Thank you so much for explaining in detail this products many and varied uses! Definitely helps me to see how I could incorporate this particular bronzing fluid in a plethora of different applications, which I appreciate. Yes, this one is on the ever burgeoning wishlist of mine! ?

Happy to share, Nancy! Liquid highlighters (and bronzers) are interesting and versatile products–for someone who wants that many uses 🙂

I swatched them in a store when they came out, and the level of pigmentation blew my mind! So much that I don’t know if I could use them. Like you said one drop would be wayyyy to much to use as a spot highlighter, and I like neither a shimmery base nor the idea of mixing products. If they made it in a much, much smaller bottle I could give it a try, but I just can’t justify spending $42 on something I won’t even make a dent in by the time it’s expired!

Yeah, if you only use it as a cheek highlighter (or spot highlighter in general), it’s going to be tough to finish it, I think. They should do a holiday set… right? Minis of all six. I bet they’d fly off the shelves.

Glad this got a nice score. This would be great for mixing into your fave foundation or moisturizer to get that glowing bronze goddess look for summer. Christine, when you applied to your legs, did the color transfer to clothes?

Nice! I like these and there are a couple of shades I wanted to buy, but have a wide range of the GA fluid sheers (and I like they are less opaque) so will content myself with those.

I’m not surprised – these are very like the GA Fluid Sheers, just more amped, and goodness knows it’s going to take a century to go through a bottle of the Fluid Sheer, LOL!

Christine, when these are mixed with a moisturizer and worn on the body, how likely are they to transfer onto clothing? I really love the idea of these but, when I’ve tried similar products in the past, I’ve ended up with “naked” areas where the product had worn off due to contact with clothing… and, once, with stains on my clothing. I realize the type of moisturizer used would impact the possibility of transfer, so I’m talking about mixing with a thinner moisturizer that “sinks into” the skin.

This looks really pretty on you. I just purchased Peter Thomas Roth 24k gold pure luxury lift and firm prism cream. It’s a self adjusting illuminator & targeted highlighter. I’ll play around with this before thinking about getting these drops.

I ordered all of these except the bronzers when they first were released on I love all of them!!Im so glad I ordered each color of highlight.They are beautiful!I’ve only used Celestial and Moonlight so far.I hope they make some new ones too that would be great.

So in love with these!! But I saw a YouTube create a dupe for these for only about $1 each! I’m torn between buying one and creating my own so maybe I might do both.

Seems like a great product, but given my preferred looks and finishes, I don’t see ever needing it. I’m definitely loyal to their custom pigment product and am happy to see that they’re still innovating.

I sometimes mix a drop with my favorite foundation w/spf to give it more opacity. That foundation is really more a tinted sunscreen, though it’s not billed that way. I’ve been meaning to experiment, trying it mixed with moisturizers, serums, my other foundation, etc, but I’m kind of lazy. 🙂 I’ll get around to it eventually.

“It is also gorgeous on legs. I really liked mixing one of the highlighting shades with a bronzing shade for a little color, warmth, and sheen on legs.” Christine, thanks for the tip!

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