Masterclass: How to Properly Apply Bronzer

By  April 07, 2011

Fact: Golden sun-kissed skin is downright gorgeous. Some of us are lucky enough to be born with it, but others have to work to get a bit browner, whether lying in a tanning bed (bad!), lying out in the sun (still bad!), or with a little cosmetic help. “We all look foxier when we’re tan,” says Victor Cembellin, Senior Makeup Artist for MAC Cosmetics. (Looking at this snapshot of the lovely Leona Lewis, we couldn’t agree more. Has she ever looked better?)

Thing is, getting bronzer right can be rather tricky. We often find ourselves wondering ‘Where? How? How much?!’ Here, Cembellin breaks the art of bronzing down.

Page one? “Bronze in places that you would naturally get tan,” advises Cembellin. “Along the crown of the forehead, from temple to temple, high across your cheekbones, and a tad on the chin and the nose.” As for proper technique, application should start from the back of the high cheekbones, and blend forward towards the apples of the cheeks. “With whatever product remains on the brush, dust on the chin and the tip of the nose.”

Another good rule of thumb is to pick a bronzer that mimics your complexion and undertone. “If you turn pink or red in the sun, choose a bronzer with a red undertone,” simplifies Cembellin. “If you turn darker shades of gold in the sun, use a bronzer with a gold base.”

Below, Cembellin offers a few more tips:

· Don’t overdo it—the cast from Jersey Shore are great for TV, but may not be the for best doling out tanning advice.

· Don’t forget to bronze the neck! Be sure to double check your bronzing skills in a full-length mirror to avoid the tan face-white neck syndrome. Your sun-kissed glow should be as seamless as it is realistic.

· A soft tool makes for a soft tan. Make sure the you own a medium-sized blush or powder brush. After all, half of the application secret lies in the tool.

· BUFF, BUFF, BUFF your bronzer into the skin using a circular motion so that it ‘becomes part of the skin’. It helps to avoid a topical, powdery application of bronzer.

· Don’t forget to blush! A realistic tan always has a bit of healthy red to it. Applying a pink-ish blush to the apples of the cheeks will bring the skin to life while making your bronzing effects look even more realistic.

· Everyone must try M∙A∙C’s Bronze Everyday Collection. From the Skinsheen Leg Spray to the Lustre Drops, this collection has all the must-have bronzing products you’ll need to have a sun-kissed glow year round!