Bronzers: Finding your holy grail: A SIS’s HG Series

Hi everyone! Your friendly neighborhood makeup addict here with our Holy Grail of Bronzers series! It’s Melani and although it is summer (well not until June 22nd) we could all use a little bronzer!

Ok, question #1…Do I really need to bronze? I say YES! I never skip bronzing! In fact, I learned from Tara that if you want to have a little color and not much time, skip the foundation and go for the bronzer! Well, which one you ask?  I have the top 5 for you! and they will work for everyone!

So here we go…where to start?

Again with makeup it is super important to figure out a few things before heading out there. Ask yourself these questions…..

  1. Do I want to contour too? bronzer and contour act differently. I will sometimes use my bronzer for contour as well. Some will argue against this as contour is usually on the cooler side and will give you appearance of higher cheekbones, smaller nose, well defined features, and can bring attention to certain areas. That being said, unless you have a special event and want to contour you can definitely get away with bronzing alone.
  2. Am I rushed and don’t want to mess around with another product? well, foundation and a lighter bronzer can look amazing, can warm you up, and lighter bronzer can work as a blush as well so it truly is a versatile product
  3. Do I also want to highlight? the good thing about some bronzers is that the formula you choose may contain shimmer which will also work to illuminate those areas such as cheekbones so you may not necessarily need a separate highlighter.
  4. What kind of finishes are there? will I look like an orange mess? There are a few finishes and I will share my top 5 must have bronzers below. Think just like foundation: Matte, glowy, highlighting, and natural are a few. If you choose the correct color for you, no glowworm face will be seen! I promise!

For reference, I have a neutral undertone. I have a light/medium complexion and a fairly oily t-zone. I also use sunscreen every day so my face is much lighter than my body. When I need to, I apply a sunless tanner to help even out my face and neck and at least appear the same color as the rest of me. I am fair enough that with SPF50 I will still burn then tan. The sun is a beast! I used to use baby oil when I was a teenager but who needs sun damage now? I definitely keep it covered! So unfortunately, unless by accident, I have to fake that beach goddess bronze!

During the week I bronze over my foundation. I also use blush and highlight. During the weekend, especially when I am headed to the beach here in Connecticut for treasure hunting, I only use bronzer instead of foundation. When I do, I apply to my hairline, above my eyebrows, sides of my nose, my chin, and my cheeks. I use a neutral bronzer that is marbled with a highlighter or I use a bronzer that has a sheen. Here are two of my shimmery, glowy, Holy Grails:

Hourglass Ambient Bronzer at Sephora.com

A second option is this bronzer from Jane Iredale which is also a great highlighting bronzer:

Jane Iredale Bronzer at Dermstore.com

Here is a general guide for bronzing: Any area in in brown is where you will use bronzer instead of foundation or on top of:

Where do I apply bronzer?

Three other bronzers that are a must, from most used to least used in my stash:

  1. Nars Laguna Bronzer. Nothing, and I mean nothing is better than this bronzer and I use this for contouring. It does contain shimmer, it is very pigmented, it is warm but I can use it year round. I am on my 5th Laguna bronzer! If you try nothing else, please, please check it out! even run to Ulta or Sephora and try it before you buy it!
    Nars Laguna Bronzer at Ulta.com

    2. Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Matte Bronzer. It is a great go to! I have this in the medium shade which is plain chocolate. and the best part? It smells like chocolate! it is infused with cocoa! The best of both worlds! there is a deep version and a light version. I wear this when I am using a true bronzer. It can be a little warm on me if I am not tanned, so I plan accordingly and do not use this as a contour.

    Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Bronzer

    3. Lancôme Star Bronzer in Sunkissed. This is a matte formula but does come in a formula with shimmer. I use this as a blush because it is fairly light. Or when I am ghostly pale like in the dead of winter! Ugh 🙁 I buy this at Macys especially when there is a great Lancôme gift with purchase!

    Lancome Star Bronzer

    Each type of bronzer I mentioned in my Top 5 Holy Grail Bronzers come in a variety of shades from light to deep skin tones. If I had to pick one it would be Nars. It is amazing! Ulta is a great company that gives points that turn into dollars so if not spending a ton is the name of your game, save up your points or use a coupon there!

    Ok readers, let me know below what summer bronzer you like best, drugstore or high end. I can’t wait to hear from you! XOXO for now, Melani