Many of my dearest friends are addicts – bronzer addicts. They plow through multiple containers of the brown stuff every year, with varied results. Sometimes they get a bronzy glow, sometimes they look dirty, sometimes their cheekbones glow like a disco ball. Alas, I’m not always a fan of bronzer.
But bronzer can be a great thing! You can get a little sunny glow, contour, warm up the skin on a non-makeup day – there are many uses for this makeup kit staple.
Here are some basic guidelines to follow when using powder bronzer:
1. Bronzer for the face should be totally matte. The sun imparts color, not glitter. The Balm’s Bahama Mama is pretty much perfect – no orangey tone, no glitter, and great as a contour. Smashbox Bronze Lights is also a terrific tone. On myself, I use Nars Bronzing Powder in Irrésistiblement, which the brand says has a shimmer that I just don’t see. What I do see is a warm desert color that brightens my NYC pallor.
2. Use a bronzer that is 2-3 shades deeper than your skin tone. That’s easy, right?
3. Um, where do I put this stuff? Good question. If you are warming up your complexion, use a light fan brush to apply bronzer along the temple and top of your forehead to give a sun kissed glow. If you want to contour (and I will do a lesson on this in a subsequent post), use a contour brush. Start at the center of your ear and stroke out straight towards your nose, tapering off before the apple of your cheek. Always blend up and out into the hairline (when you don’t, you look dirty).
3. When applying bronzer, always start with dry skin (as in, not wet). When you attempt to apply a dark powder on top of damp skin, you risk getting “skips.” Your brush will not slide easily on the skin, but will catch on the moisture and leave uneven deposits of color. This mistake is tough to fix, so make sure that you let your foundation or BB cream dry down on your skin before you apply bronzer. You can use a bit of setting powder, or lay a fresh tissue on your face to lift excess moisture.
4. Please use a light touch with bronzer – don’t press down too hard on your skin with your loaded makeup brush. Too much of this deeper color can make a gal look dramatic, or worse, dirty. Remember, the denser the brush, the more color you will deposit on the face. The lighter the brush, the lighter the application.
Bronze on, friends!