A sugar fanatic’s dream has made its way to Minnesota! Bursting with colors and flavors, Candytopia is a 17,000-square-foot pop-up art installment currently located in Mall of America. Last weekend, my husband and I visited the MoA location. Even after reading as many reviews as I could have, I was still floored by the absolute adorability of the exhibits. Being the frill-loving lolita that I am, I of course had to dress up for the event. And so for my fellow lolitas and J-fashion enthusiasts, I’ll be sharing some tips and tricks to make the most of your own trip.
Candytopia’s color-scheme is more geared towards louder, vibrant colors as opposed to pastel shades. It’s a visual overload, so I recommend choosing solid dresses or minimal prints to stand out from the background. As such, I decided to go with one of my favorite dresses, Angelic Pretty’s Carnival Applique JSK in red. I paired this with the matching headbow, striped OTKs also by AP, a Baby the Stars Shine Bright cutsew, Bodyline tea party shoes, and offbrand pearl bracelets. Roaming the fourteen rooms in the exhibit, I learned a lot of stuff that reading most reviews did not prepare me for.
First, minimize your layers. I say this for a couple of reasons. One is that there’s a rainbow room filled with confetti and they got everywhere. So, opt for an OP instead of a JSK and save yourself from having tiny crepe paper pieces invading every imaginable opening they can (our cakeholes included). For this reason, choose tight-fitting clothes to make it harder for the confetti to get under them. You can also use a cage skirt or a daily petticoat to keep your inner layers from birthing confetti long after you leave the exhibit. Go with natural hair for easier clean-up. The rainbow room has an area where you can blow off most of the confetti from your body, but it’s pretty strong and might blow your wigs off. Pro-tip, don’t open your mouth widely in the rainbow room.
Minimizing layers is also beneficial for your general comfort. Because of its popularity, swarms of people are going to be there, and it can get really warm really fast. Dressing cooler takes away some of the stress and lets you enjoy yourself better. This is especially true in the marshmallow pit. It looks amazing, but it is so hot being buried under all that foam. And do treat it like you would a high-speed roller coaster – take off all your loose items or they might be buried in a marshmallow grave. I learned this the hard way.
My next tip is to lag behind your group. There’s no time limit for staying in each room, and most people are excited to move on to other rooms. Therefore, taking your time will allow you to enjoy the details better and get photos without other people getting in the way. Remember that once you leave a room, you can’t go back.
Candytopia has an app you can download to access their cameras, so you can get fun and creative pictures in select rooms. I highly recommend this, and don’t be shy to ask for a couple of takes. We made the mistake of not doing this in one room and when we got home, we saw a very disappointing picture. The staff were very friendly and more than willing to help out, so do it as long as you’re not holding up a lot of people behind you.
Speaking of pictures, don’t be afraid to use flash photography. Not all of the rooms are well-lit, and some of the bigger art pieces block out the light. To help you get a better shot, use flash and don’t be shy about interacting with the art pieces – just don’t be too rough.
The last tip I need to mention is to eat before going inside. Candytopia doesn’t hold back on giving sweets, but it’s definitely not enough to fill you up. Navigating the surprisingly large exhibit while bumping shoulders with other people can make even Gandhi hangry. Also, having something in your tummy will keep you from crashing. Gotta keep that blood sugar stable.
Overall, going to Candytopia was a very worthwhile experience. I had a lot fun playing around, eating sweets, and taking pictures – as evidenced by my Instagram feed. I highly recommend visiting the exhibit and letting your inner sweet-obsessed monster loose. It was well-worth the ticket cost, although I would recommend skipping the sweets from the gift shop because they were a bit more expensive than the usual retail price.
I should note that this is not a sponsored post, and I am not affiliated with Candytopia, it’s creators, or Mall of America. We paid for our own tickets, and these are my honest thoughts. If any of you lovely people found these tips helpful, please let me know in the comments section below, and we can share our candy-filled experiences together!
P.S. Candytopia is also currently open in Atlanta, Georgia.