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How To Properly Apply Bronzer

How do you use bronzer? Here's our expert guide. Use bronzer for a healthy, sunkissed glow that looks natural and lasts all day.

Applying Bronzer: A How-To Makeup Guide

Bronzers can work wonders for our appearance giving us a youthful and healthy sun-kissed look that warms and brightens up our complexion. There is a method to applying bronzer in such a way that it provides you the effects you want, with a natural look. It takes a multi-step approach, but after you try it a couple of times you will be as good as a pro. No need for hazardous tanning of the face, you will easily be applying your bronzer as flawlessly and effortlessly as you’d want each time you put your makeup on.

A Step-By-Step Guide To Applying Bronzer

Step 1: Applying Cream or Water-Based Liquid Formula

Why do you want to add a more creamy, smooth product before the powder? The reason is simple, this texture will create an unblemished canvas to which the powder will adhere and blend much more effectively. A bit of creme-based bronzer is a solid first layer in the routine which not only helps it apply evenly but also keeps it long-lasting throughout your day. A tinted primer can work as it will even out your skin tone while providing a bit of a glow all over.

Step 2: Adding A Contouring Powder, Stick, or Cream

Creating a definition and dimension is something that everyone must work on, even those with superior bone structures. Add a contouring face cream beneath your cheekbones near the hairline, but make sure you don’t get any smudged into the actual hairs strands which can look messy. Always start from the inner cheekbones and work your way out and up. You will swipe towards the temples. Then grab your favorite makeup sponge for the second layer to be blended into an impeccable finish.

The way to use the sponge is to buff with circular motions. Don’t apply too much pressure as you don’t want to wear your way through the first layer, as doing so will rub and smear all the makeup off. A light buffing round and round helps the blending look more natural.

Step 3: Add Powder

Matte powder bronzer does a couple of great things. First, it pumps up the warmth factor. Next, it helps improve the organic tan look without making your entire face an awkward brown. It also sets the layers together for cohesion and long-lasting power. Last, it helps absorb oil that could cause a sheen.

The way you add your powder is to dip into the fine dust and remember to tap off the excess before you sweep it across your skin. This time work your way down. Starting at the temples, brush downward through the cheeks. Don’t overdo the powder, just a bit can do the trick.

Step 5: Brighten The Bronze Up With A Glow

Finally, adding some glow will make everything pop and bring the bright and the tan together nicely. Using a highlighter in a golden sheen start at the top of the cheekbones through the top of the line of your nose structure.

The Do’s And Don’ts Of Applying Bronzer

Now that you know the steps they take and the types of products to use, to fully ensure that you don’t end up looking dirty or orange, here are some basic do’s and don’ts to consider when it comes to properly apply your bronzer.

Bronzer Dos:

  • Use matte or satin finish formulas over sparkly ones which can be shiny and not only look juvenile in some respects but also unnatural. Especially if you have oily, slick skin it amps up the largest negatives in this skin type’s appearance. When normal skin sweats, the same thing happens so it is best to stay away from the shimmer on your face.
  • Over-application doesn’t come out right, so stay away from densely bristled brushes like the kabuki. Stick to fluffy brushes or specific angled bronzer brush with more loose bristles that allow for a light application of the powder and minimize excess.
  • Think about where you’d apply the most SPF if you were out in the sun all day. These areas that tend to pick up the most sun exposure should be the sport-specific areas that you apply your bronzer to, versus swiping all over the face. To avoid an overdone brown look that appears as if you went bronzer-happy, spot applying to these natural areas such as your forehead, top of nose, cheekbones, and jawline is the best way to go.
  • Take your time and apply lightly. If you need a touch up later, that is ok.

Bronzer Dont’s:

  • Stay away from overly deep colors that are way too dark for your natural tone which will end up looking fake and dirty. Stick to picking a color two shades darker than your natural tone.
  • Apply directly from the bronzer to the brush, make sure to tap off excess powder.
  • Bronzer is not a contouring product, don’t use it as such. A light sweep of blush on your cheeks along with a dusting of bronzer over top of those cheekbones is your best bet.

Resources— Bronzer vs. Contour, What's the Difference?, How The Skin Tans

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