The ultimate guide to bronzer


There’s something about
bronzed, glistening skin that is just plain sexy. Not everyone can look like a
gilded statue, though. Everyone has different skin types, and while your best
friend might look like a Victoria’s Secret model in the summer, you might feel
more like Casper the Friendly Ghost. If you want more of that
just-went-on-vacation-in-Cancun glow, bronzers can help you out.
Bronzers can be used for a
number of things: darkening your foundation that’s too light, contouring, and
providing an overall #nofilter look. But there are approximately a zillion
bronzers out there, so how are you supposed to know which bronzer is right for
you? We’ve got your ultimate guide right here.
Choosing a color

Color is probably the most
important factor in deciding on a bronzer. If you’re very fair-skinned, you
don’t want something too dark. If you have darker skin, you want a shade that
will show up. To get a natural look, you want to follow the golden rule of
going two shades darker than your skin tone. According to Jessica Alba’s makeup
artist, Nick Barose, “avoid reds or browns if you’re fair, because those
shades will make you look orange and dirty.”
You also need to consider what
your skin’s undertones are. If your skin has warm undertones, you can use most
golden brown bronzers. If you have cool undertones, you should stick with
neutral shades and avoid red-toned bronzers. Yellow undertones can work with
peachy, more pink bronzers. It might take some trial and error to find the
right shade, so do lots of swatching and don’t get discouraged!
Picking a type

You also need to figure out
what type of bronzer you want. There are loose powders, pressed powders,
liquid, cream, stick bronzers, and more. The type of bronzer you choose depends
on your skin type. If you have oily or acne-prone skin, powder bronzers are
your best bet. Dry skin can use powder, but liquid or cream blushes will last
longer. Really, any skin type can use any kind of bronzer, so test a few types
out to see which one works for you.
Not all that glitters is gold

Another factor in choosing the
right bronzer is the amount of shimmer it contains. Some people want to shine
bright like a diamond, while others prefer the matte look. It’s totally up to
you, but keep in mind that shimmery bronzers reflect lots of light and can make
oily skin look even more oily. If you do opt for a glistening shade, try to
pick one with super fine particles instead of chunks of glitter. Still not sure
if sparkles are right for you? Use this tip from cosmetic expert Paula Bergoun:
“Shine dominates the world of bronzers, so be sure to check how it looks
in natural, direct lighting.”

How to apply

Applying bronzer can be
tricky. You don’t want to look like you smeared chocolate all over your face. A
general rule for applying bronzer is you can always add more, so start lightly.
You want to hit the areas of your face that actually get sun-kissed when you’re
outside, like the bridge of your nose, cheekbones, and top of your forehead.
When you use bronzer all over, it can look a little muddled. Use it sparingly.
Pro tip from the renowned Bobbi Brown: “Keep in mind that bronzing powders
are easier to blend than liquids or gels, but you need to make sure your skin
is perfectly dry because powders can stick to damp skin. Use a large, fluffy
brush, tap off any excess powder, and apply in a circular motion to areas the
sun hits first — cheeks, nose, and forehead.” Translation: start at your
forehead and draw the number three over your cheeks and down to your jawline.

Kayode Ojo
Kayode Emmanuel Ojo is the Co-Founder and Managing Director at SHEFFA Limited. He is presently studying Computer Science at the National Open University, Victoria Island, Lagos.