Also found in: Thesaurus, Idioms.


tr.v. sug·ar·coat·ed, sug·ar·coat·ing, sug·ar·coats
1. To cause to seem more appealing or pleasant: a sentimental treatment that sugarcoats a harsh reality.
2. To coat with sugar: sugarcoat a pill.


(ˈʃʊg ərˌkoʊt)

1. to cover with sugar.
2. to make (something difficult or distasteful) appear more pleasant or acceptable.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Verb1.sugarcoat - coat with something sweet, such as a hard sugar glaze
dulcify, dulcorate, edulcorate, sweeten - make sweeter in taste
2.sugarcoat - cause to appear more pleasant or appealing; "The mayor did not sugarcoat the reality of the tax cuts"
spin - twist and turn so as to give an intended interpretation; "The President's spokesmen had to spin the story to make it less embarrassing"


1. To make superficially more acceptable or appealing:
2. To give a deceptively attractive appearance to:
Idioms: paper over, put a good face on.
References in periodicals archive ?
The liberal elite, who keep trying to sugarcoat the fact Ms Pryce is a criminal, claim this is "harsh and vindictive".
High self-monitors are likely to avoid sharing bad news due to their awareness of the negative association with sharing bad news; however, they are also likely to sugarcoat when they do share negative information as it is a way they can maintain emotional support by sharing negative information in a way that is more palatable for the recipient.
She didn't sugarcoat (in a politically correct manner) ancient human sacrifices as admirable religious rituals.
The stories of survivors are gut-wrenching and Breslin makes no attempt to sugarcoat what has happened.
It is useful, too, to remember that defending the indefensible has long been a popular sport on the left, whose own revisionist historians are busy trying to sugarcoat not McCarthyism but Stalinism.
Although her book is incredibly affirming, Garner doesn't sugarcoat her material.
We can't sugarcoat this as just being a good chance for any other,' said Megson.
Do not sugarcoat productivity expectations, salary support and non-clinical work just to get the candidate to accept the position.
Morning by Morning does not sugarcoat the homeschool experience, and when interviewed, Penn-Nabrit spoke candidly about her son's unhappiness with homeschooling.