Life is too short (and your face is too lovely) to look orange. I’d like to be a participant in ensuring that such never occurs.
I prefer Physician’s Formula bronzers to every other drugstore bronzer I have tried, as well as the majority of expensive bronzers I have tried.
**Update: Darling, this article is semi-ancient and will be updated soon. Feel free to read, but please check back again soon. In the meantime, refer to the main beauty section for newer (less antiquated) bits of brilliance.**
The following is a list of common complaints I have heard and read about bronzers:
“It makes me look orange.”
“It’s too red.”
“It looks muddy and makes me look dirty.”
“It has too much shimmer and looks fake on my face.”
“It streaks on me.”
None of the bronzers contained within this list will give you anything to complain about if (and only if) you choose the appropriate product for your skin type and desired result!
Powder Palette Mineral Glow Pearls
This bronzer is simply gorgeous, and provides a moderate amount of glow and illumination. If you are looking for a bronzer free of shimmer and illumination, skip this. The radiance this bronzer provides is lovely, though. In my opinion, it is not excessive at all. My only complaint about this product is how messy it is if you drop the compact. It is a nightmare trying to clean up, so you may want to store this in a safe place (thou shalt not store in your purse or makeup bag!)
Light Bronze (fair-to-light complexions)
Bronze (medium-to-olive complexions)
Mineral Wear Talc-Free Airbrushing Pressed Bronzer with SPF 30
Appearances are often deceiving, and not in a positive way, particularly with drugstore cosmetic products. However, this product is pleasantly deceiving. It does not appear to be anything special in its package, however it applies like a dream on the skin. It has the least amount of shimmer compared to the others within this list. Therefore, if you are opposed to shimmer and opt for a more matte finish, this may be the best choice for you. Additionally, it provides the most skin coverage, hence the “airbrushed” claim, than the others. I typically reach for this one when I am skipping foundation. However, it is still appropriate to dust over foundation as well.
*Tip: Do not bother with the brush included in this. Simple toss it in the trash and use a kabuki or stippling brush, depending upon how much product you wish you use. Light Bronze (fair-to-light complexions) Bronze (medium-to-olive complexions)
Summer Eclipse Bronzers
Moonlight (fair-to-light complexions/light bronzing effect)
This is my favorite Physician’s Formula bronzer of all time simply because I am able to wear it year round. It looks great dusted on my fair skin in the middle of winter, but also adds to my light tan in the summer. It provides the most beautiful golden glow, absence of any hint of orange. There is a moderate amount of shimmer to this, which does not bother me at all. I have used this to contour, add radiance to my foundation as well as to add subtle radiance and warmth to my bare skin. It is fool-proof because it is so subtle.
Starlight (fair-to-medium complexions/medium bronzing effect) There is not a significant difference between this shade and the Moonlight shade. This shade is about one level deeper than the Moonlight, however the golden tone is identical. This is my favorite summer bronzer for my naturally fair complexion. I could never wear this in the winter, but am able to wear it beautifully once I’ve established a base tan.
Sunlight (medium-to-olive complexions/intense bronzing effect) This formula/shade looked great on me after returning from the Caribbean two years ago. I was able to wear it beautifully for a full month. However, as soon as my tan began to fade, it gave me the dreaded muddy effect. It is slightly more red than the other shade variations. If your skin is any lighter than a true medium, do not attempt to wear this.
Bronze Booster Beauty Balm
This bronzer will rock your world (well, at least your skin…)!
Its texture is quite soft and somewhat creamy. It does not provide a stiff, matte look, but more of a skin enhancer – best when applied over foundation – versus being an actual bronzer used to darken the skin. It is not meant to be applied heavily. It will certainly amp up your glow and radiance factors, however!
Additionally, many people like to use their bronzers to contour their faces, but this is not ideal for that type of use. This product looks best when applied lightly with a big, fluffy brush. If you apply it this way, it will provide a beautiful warmth and subtle glow all over the face and decolletage.
It is available in two shades:
Light/Medium – creates a subtle tan glow and adds warmth to fair/light skin, or softly enhances an existing tan
Medium – greatly enhances an existing tan and adds warmth to medium-to-olive complexions.