Since summer is coming up, bronzer is a must for that beautiful beachy vibe. Nowadays, there’s plenty to choose from. Whether or not you’re a fan, you can’t deny the definition and glowy look that it leaves on your face. A multipurpose compact, bronzer can also be used for contouring and eyeshadow. That’s a pretty good reason to have one or two in your stash.
There’s different types to consider, from cream to matte and shimmer powders. Today, we’ll show you the top 10 bronzers we recommend, ranging from Milk Makeup to Hourglass. From subtle glow to full on heat wave, here are a few that’ll help bring out your inner radiance.
How to Choose a Bronzer – Buying Guide
You may have tried using bronzer before but decided it wasn’t for you. Maybe it was too dark, didn’t apply evenly, or you weren’t sure where to dust it on.
We’ve all been there, so let’s go over how to choose a bronzer, what it’s used for, and how it can shape your face.
So What’s the Purpose?
Though there are many uses for bronzers, let’s just talk about the big two: giving your face its glow back, and accentuating your bone structure. Knowing this, you can choose the color and type of bronzer you want, depending on how you want to use it.
Depending on how you apply it, the results can be stunningly different.
Gravitate Towards Natural Glow
Foundation can smooth out your face and make you look washed out. At a time like this, lightly swipe some bronzer on your forehead and cheeks to bring your face back to life.
This will give you a healthy and fresh finish. If you have porcelain skin, you might be thinking, “Bronzer’s too dark; it’ll stand out; I’ll look like I’m trying to hard.” But this kind of light dusting looks natural and brings out the glow of the sun in your skin.
Sculpt Your Cheekbones
Contouring is a popular way to create dimension, an age old art technique. By outlining your face and adding shadow to the hollows of your cheeks, you’ll look sharp, defined, entrancing. It’s rare that people’s faces are completely symmetrical, so shading in certain parts helps create that illusion.
Applying in the right places will slim your face considerably. Since the flattering effect is easily noticeable, there’s nothing to be lost by using bronzer.
Rich Powders or Smoothing Creams
The easiest type of bronzer to use is powder. You can control how much you want to put on the brush and how lightly you want to dust it, so it’s recommended for those who want a sheer layer.
Creams meld well with the skin and provide better coverage. Those who’re already familiar with makeup can create dazzling and long-lasting looks with cream. A warning to beginners: it’s a little harder to use than powder and will take time to get used to.
Shimmer in the Sun
Some bronzers have a gleam and add extra glow to your face. You can go for heavy glitter, glossiness, and vibrancy, and have your face practically sparkle after you’re done with it. Or, get something more toned down, just to give off the subtle gleam of dew.
While some bronzers can look too shimmery, when swatched, the glow melts away in to the skin for a matte finish. Also, the smaller the specks of glitter are, the quieter the bronzer and the more easily it melds with your skin.
For shading, or contouring, many choose not to use shimmering makeup, opting for a matte finish. Whether or not you want shimmery bronzer is completely up to your preference.
Top 10 Best Bronzers to Buy Online
Now that you have a good understanding on how to choose, let’s see which one is right for you. All the bronzers here are popular and well received, so it’s worth giving at least one of them a go.
10. Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel
Conceals and Sculpts for that Velvet Finish
Not only can this be used as bronzer, it can also double as a concealer for darker skin tones. It’s lightweight, and blends smoothly without any streaks. While it’s strong enough to cover acne, it still retains a soft, natural look. The scent is subtle and not too overpowering.
It’s definitely more on the expensive side, and you don’t get a lot of product for the price. Some with medium skin tones have seen this come out to an orange after being blended onto their face. Being a cream, it’s easy to accidentally scoop out more than you need–just something to keep in mind.
9. Benefit Cosmetics Hoola Matte Bronzer
Available in Mini for Your Traveling Needs
A popular bronzer, Benefit’s Hoola is easy to build and blend. The product is highly pigmented and goes on naturally. It won’t budge all day, and it’s free of shimmer and sparkles for those who prefer matte. Hoola also comes in a mini size for when you want to travel and carry less bulk.
Unfortunately, there’s only two shades to choose from, a muted light brown orange and mauvey pink. The packaging, though cute, can make it hard to get product out. The brush that comes with it sheds bristles, leaving tiny strands on the product and your face.
8. Milk Makeup Matte Bronzer
A Vegan Cream Option
Milk specializes in a minimalist approach to makeup, as seen in this paraben-free, eco-conscious bronzer. With the unique packaging, you can apply it straight on your face or use a brush. It dries to a natural finish, making it easy to apply and blend. It’s moisturizing and gives off a sheer, soft effect.
Light skin tones will want to proceed cautiously, as a handful have remarked that it appears orange on their skin when blended out. There’s only two shades to choose from, a milk and a dark chocolate, with a strange smell some describe as Play-Doh. Those with sensitive skin, beware, as it may cause acne.
7. NARS Bronzing Powder
Best of Matte and Shimmer
This bronzer gives off a finish that is both matte and shimmer, so you get the best of both worlds. It’s easy to blend and has great coverage. A soft and smooth powder, it’s highly pigmented and lasts all day, giving you a natural looking glow.
As with the previous ones, NARS Bronzing Powder only comes in two shades, brown and deep brown, both with gold shimmer. Those who prefer completely matte bronzers might want to pass on this one.
6. Bobbi Brown Bronzing Powder
Long-Lasting Glow Available in a Range of Color Options
With 7 shades to choose from, Bobbi Brown gives you more than twice the options you get from other bronzers on the market. It’s smooth and easy to blend, giving a natural glowy finish. This bronzer won’t look orange or muddy on the skin, and won’t settle in wrinkles or dry patches.
Although it’s another expensive one, Bobbi Brown’s bronzer will last you a long time to come. There have been a few reviews that’ve complained about fallout–where the pigment showers on to other parts of your face–something to take note of before you dip your brush in.
5. Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess Powder Bronzer
A Bronzer that Lasts for Ages
This sizeable bronzer has a matte finish that’s natural looking with no orange glow. It’s got great color payoff, and comes with a small brush good for traveling or quick touch ups. Easily buildable and long lasting, Bronze Goddess controls shine well to keep you flawless throughout the day.
It’s got a decent selection of 4 shades, from a light coffee to a deep red mocha. Though more on the expensive side, it’s got a lot of product in it. It mostly has golden and red undertones, so it may not work well for those with neutral skin.
4. Guerlain Terracotta Bronzing Powder
Buildable, Hydrating, and Natural with a Shine
Another one with a 7 shade range, Guerlain’s Terracotta Bronzing Powder blends smoothly and won’t cake up. The texture is soft and buildable. It’s got moisturizing properties without being greasy, instead giving off a dewy look. It’ll stick even in humid weather, and won’t leave an unnatural cast on your face.
Terracotta does have a light floral scent, a caution to those with sensitive skin or who prefer not to have fragrant makeup products. Though the product works well, some have reported that the packaging breaks easily.
3. Laura Mercier Bronzing Pressed Powder
Dermatologist Tested and Good for Oily Skin
A silky and weightless powder, this bronzer is suitable for all skin tones. It blends easily and lasts all day. The powder won’t stick to your dry patches, and it’s good for controlling oily skin. With its natural coverage and radiant finish, Laura Mercier’s Bronzing Pressed Powder will have you looking impeccable from the start.
Some users have found that the product crumbles prematurely, with it settling at the bottom of their makeup bags.
2. Hourglass Ambient Lighting Bronzer
Bronzed Light for the Beach
If the sleek and beautiful packaging of Hourglass’ Ambient Lighting Bronzer doesn’t draw you in, the marbleized warm colors will. It is shimmery but not overpowering, and won’t accentuate any textures or fine lines on the skin. Ambient Lighting works well with mature skin, and best with warm skin tones.
They’re also available in mini sizes, should you want to travel with a dazzling glow. It does tend to look more orangey on paler skin tones, so those with lighter skin may want to test out the waters before diving in.
1. Too Faced Chocolate Soleil
8 Hour Wear of Matte Finish
Giving off a delicious chocolate scent, this bronzer blends very nicely on the skin and has just the right amount of pigment. It’s not too over or underwhelming, with no shimmers or sparkle. An easily buildable bronzer that’s not too orange or muddy in color, Chocolate Soleil will last up to 8 hours so you can go about your day without worries.
There’s only 3 shades to choose from, the others being a lighter Milk Chocolate and a darker golden Chocolate Gold, which is a shimmer shade. All give a natural finish for that sun-kissed look.
How about it? Have we changed your mind about bronzer? For those who haven’t used bronzer before, maybe you’ll give it a chance now. Adding bronzer to your makeup will bring you head-turning changes with even the smallest swipe and give your look a new dimension.
Take a chance and give it a go, you might like what you see!
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