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How to Apply Powder Bronzer

[See the rest of our How to Apply Makeup series for beginners.]

Bronzer is one of my favorite products. By using it correctly, you can get that healthy, gorgeous sun-kissed look you’ve been coveting. But if applied poorly, you can end up looking like an Oompa Loompa. The trick with bronzer is to know when, where and how much to use.

Step 1: Choose Your Brush. Choose a brush with a large, fluffy end. A large powder brush or a large blush brush can work, but just know that you need to make sure it is big enough to allow the product to be dusted on over a large area without being too heavy or leaving streaks.

Step 2: Take your brush and gently swirl it in your bronzer. Whether you’re using a loose powder bronzer, or the more common regular powder bronzer, you just want to get a small amount on your brush. It’s better to start with too little than too much. You can always layer the product to get a deeper color, so start light on your first touch.

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Creative Commons License photo credit: yarnivore

Step 3: Tap your brush on the edge of the compact with the brush end over the makeup pot. This helps to eliminate any excess powder from the brush and allows the excess to fall back into the container so that you avoid wasting any.

Step 4: Apply the bronzer to your face in a number 3 shape on one half of your face – starting at the top of your forehead and working your way down the side of your face. The “number 3 shape” will go from your forehead around the side of your forehead and temple, then in towards the upper part of your cheek bone, then back out around your jawline and down to your chin (your jawline and chin should get less product than your forehead and upper cheeks). Next, you’ll repeat the steps and apply it to the other side of your face. Think of focusing on the areas of your face where the sun naturally hits and tans your face.

Step 5: Blend! As you apply the bronzer in the previous step, you should just be creating a gentle glow, not a dark, obvious stripe of product. Once you are done applying it, Be sure to blend well. One of the most tell-tale signs of a poor makeup look is obvious streaking or lack of blending. To blend, use your empty brush to smooth out the product anywhere it looks uneven.

To finish, you can repeat the steps, and/or blend a little extra across the top of your forehead and cheekbones to add a little depth to your color. Just be careful not to go overboard. Too little bronzer looks way better than too much.


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