Monday, January 4, 2010

Beauty & the Bronzer.....

The status of Bronzers has gone up from only summers to all year round. This was evident in RTW and Couture Fashion shows for Autumn-Winter 2009 where models were bronzed enough to sport a sun kissed glow and that too in the months of December. The days of caked skin are over…now its fake baked real skin………..

Gone are the days when ladies doused themselves with makeup that looked like flour on the face with rouge like jelly stains. Today the modern woman likes real see through skin which reflects her personality.

Bronzers attained this all year round status because after sporting one for the whole year, girls realized that they could look sun kissed even in frozen winters. Well the secret lies in formulations btw. Modern bronzers are not orangey or just tan colored. They are the hybrid versions. They come baked in terracotta ovens and are infused with pigments like gold, silver, pink and even lavender.

Such bronzers even suffice as blushes at times of emergency. So it’s the flushed effect meeting sun kissed skin. If you are looking for these hybrid bronzers let me suggest you some according to certain features and specialties they have.

1. I have always loved bronzers that come in multiple shades in one palette as they are multi purpose and can be used to attain a large number of looks by using just one palette. Shiseido multi shade enhancer in S2 and S3 are the best examples. With a gradation in shades they cover highlighters and bronzers in the same palette, come in a sleek Japanese packaging and look amazing not only on your face but also on your dressing table.

2. Chanel is known to make lovely bronzers too. Their powders are semi matte and sometime infused with tiny specks of shimmery gold and pinks and are finely milled so that they go absolutely natural on the face. But they come with a bigger price tag too.

3. LancĂ´me got in Ochre Minerales, a line of mineral bronzers for a tropical glow. These mineral bronzers are light weight powders that subtly contour the face giving it depth and dimensions. They are very good for photo shoots but you really need to rub in the container to get the product on the brush.

4. MAC makes the largest number of bronzers anyone would ever see. They have them in all textures and all possible combinations like pink-bronze, gold-bronze, silver-bronze, rose-bronzer, peach-bronze, plum-bronze…….you name it and they have it. Their Style Warriors collection was an epitome of bronzers. I loved the Lustre Drops that were liquid bronzers that blended so well. MAC has fantastic mineralized skin finishes that impart a healthy glow on dusting with may be a fan brush. They have a special series of bronzers in Matt Bronze and Refined Golden along with a number of iridescent compacts and loose powders.

5. Clinique makes the Almost Bronzer that comes with an SPF 15. It gives immediate sun kissed glow and immediate sunscreen in one and comes in a light and dark shade in the same container for mix-n-matching. Clinique also makes an Uplighting Illuminator, an oil free liquid illuminating lotion in Bronze which is a rare bronzer with silver particles. Its more on the cooler side than being warmer and very good for contouring even though it is in a liquid form.

6. Estee lauder’s bronze goddess line is a fantastic line of lovely and lively bronzers ranging from liquid to powder bronzers in all imaginable colors,textures and multiples.

7. Guerlain tops the charts after MAC in having the largest number of bronzers in the market. Their mosaic pattern bronzers in blonde, brunette and dark match bronzers with natural hair color. I simply love their Terracotta line of bronzers that are for every one. They even sell bronzers for men in India.

8. Clarins this season has launched lovely bronzer, blush and powder in one compact makeup. The bronzer is a plum bronze and flatters almost all warm complexions.

9. YSL is not behind in making bronzers and so is Christian Dior. They have limited edition palettes of the most sumptuous bronzers seen in the market. Dior makes lovely Bronze Harmonie palettes and I have been really lucky to own two of them. YSL Poudre de soleil are wonderful iridescent bronzers giving a lovely glow on the skin.

10. International brands that make lovely bronzers are Benefit (Hoola, Dallas, Glamazon), Smashbox, Too Faced cosmetics and Bobbi Brown. Stila makes very sun friendly bronzers in amazing textures and colors.


The story is endless and hybrid bronzers are just pouring in the market. Now it’s a time to choose the one which fits our complexion the best.


1. If you are a PINK undertone and fair then opt for pink or gold bronzers. I suggest Clinique Almost Bronzer SPF 15 in Light/Medium or Guerlain Terracotta Bronzer in Blonde.

2. If you are a GOLDEN undertone and fair then opt for golden bronzers with a little bit of peach in them. Though its better to stay away from really orange bronzers. MAC has Iridescent powder in Belightful that makes a lovely highlighter. I also love the Clarins multi touch in Apricot with a dusting of MAC mineralize skin finishes for a radiant glow.

3. If you are medium-fair then opt for coppery toned bronzers or plum toned bronzers like Dior Bronze Harmonie in Safari or Sunset Fiesta. Shiseido Accentuating Stick in Bronze touch makes a lovely cream bronzer that glides smoothly on the skin without giving a streaky appearance even in the most oily skin.


4. If you are darker in skin color then opt for shimmery bronzers that highlight the prominent areas of the face. I love dusting Elizabeth Arden Color Intrigue bronzer in Dark or MAC bronzer in Refined Golden. Guerlain has launched a limited Terracotta Bronzer in Dark which is absolutely wonderful. For very dark skins, use an orange colored or copper toned bronzer on the highlight areas of the face.You can even apply a bronze lipstick and smudge it as a highlighter for a polished look, provided you have a flawless skin.

If you are on budget, then bronzers can be a limited access to you. Sorry if I am saying this. But the choices in the medium brands are not that many. I love the L’Oreal Glam Bronze bronzers as they make a lovely sun kissed hue on the cheeks. Faces cosmetics (available in Pantaloons) makes lovely affordable bronzers and so does NYX cosmetics. I would not comment much on Revlon and Lakme as I haven’t tried anything from their ranges. ColorBar does make lovely bronze bricks packed with 24 karat shimmer at an affordable price.

The best way to use a bronzer is to dust them with a fluffy large powder or bronzer brush or maybe a fan brush.


Dos and Don’ts of using bronzers: -

1. Use a shade of bronzer 2 shades darker than your skin tone and skin color.

2. Dust bronzer in the areas of the face where sun hits.

3. But for a contoured effect use a matte bronzer in the receding areas of the face like hollows of the cheeks, crease of eyes, under the jaw line, sides of the temples etc.

4. Never use a bronzer that way too darker than your skin color. You have to look sun kissed and not sun scratched or sun burnt.

5. Dust a bronzer lightly first and then build layers to have a controlled application and not over do.

6. Some bronzers tend to lighten and some tend to darken on the face after a few hours of application. Learn from your previous mistakes and get it right.
We are very scared of bronzers because it’s a myth that they make us look dark. But believe me, bronzers if chosen two shades darker than your skin color imparts a very healthy glow and does not give a sun burnt look. Loose iridescent powders make the worst bronzers as their application cannot be controlled and so are liquid bronzers that can go streaky with time. Here I have a list of some amazing bronzers in different textures.

1. Compact Powder Bronzers: - MAC Matt Bronze, YSL Poudre De Soleil, Guerlain Terracotta Range and Clinique Almost Bronzer SPF 15


2. Compact Powder Bronzers in Multi shades: - Shiseido Multi Shade enhancer, Dior Bronze Harmonie, Elizabeth Arden Color Intrigue Bronzer and Inglot Bronzer.

3. Loose Powders: - MAC makes lovely ones and so does YSL. But they can be very messy so be ready to get them on your clothes too.

4. Liquid Bronzers: - Clinique Uplighting Illuminator in Bronze is my only favorite in the list.

5. Cream Bronzers: - Shiseido Accentuating Stick in S1 Bronze Flush and MAC Cream blushes in peachy bronze shades.

6. Stains: - Body shop iridescent lip and cheek stain with a coppery red hue. It feels like nothing on skin but gives an amazing color.

7. Mineral bronzers: - Terracotta oven baked bronzers from MAC mineralize skin finishes and Revlon are in forefront. Korres from Urban Shore in Delhi makes some good bronzers but I haven’t seen them.

Some innovative ways of using bronzers as a part of day makeup: -

- Layer over a finished look and see how you look healthier.

- Try out pink-bronze, peach-bronze, copper-bronze, golden-bronze, yellow-
bronze, orange-bronze, apricot-bronze, coral-bronze, rose-bronze, plum-bronze, red-bronze and so many more hues and your impression of bronzer would change.

- Apply eye shadows in turquoise, royal blues, lilacs and bright greens and so many more colors with oodles of mascaras coupled with shimmery glosses.

- Use less bronzer during the day darkening it by evening.

- Shimmery taupe and gold eye shadow, volumizing mascara, black liner, iridescent bronzer, plum lipstick and a clear gloss pulls a very sophisticated look of the evening.

Bronzers are making ripples in the cosmetic industry and we need to really think about it….

Think of any looks you'd like to share and let me know…

Till then,

Ciao

4 comments:

  1. Great post! I'm really pale, so I love a light wash of bronzer on my skin. I use Korres Monoi Oil Bronzer, and it's amazing, very light-weight, nice colour, pretty gold shimmer.
    XO

    ReplyDelete
  2. Woo! that's an awesome post. I love using COlorbar's bronzer and it was only after that I got so hooked to bronzers. I even apply bronzer during these wintery days. I feel they make my skin look healthier than if I use the pinkish ones.

    I am sooper scared of liquid bronzers becasue I feel I would almost end up oversoing these.

    Any say on Body shops's bronzers? They agve quite a few in click pens illuminating powder and pearls forms.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love, love, love Too Faced Snow Bunny Bronzer this time of year. It has four shades to blend and get a natural glow that doesn't look too phony for the winter. It never fails that I get at least one comment a day when I wear it, stating how amazing my skin looks.

    ReplyDelete
  4. wohoo .. great post , I have neva used bronzers and this post makes me feel em missing a lot .. will get one for me soon
    thanks :)

    ReplyDelete

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