Nothing says summer like bronzed and glowing skin, and whilst we’ve been fortunate with the weather thus far as we head towards colder months we’ve pulled together some of the best bronzer products to help you maintain your glow even when the sun stops shining.
Whether you’re looking for a quick and easy shimmer on the cheeks, a full face tan mist, a gradual tan or an instant all-over fake tan, this list should have something for everyone.
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£30 | Buy now
Why we love it: This bronzer will leave you with a luscious, natural sun-kissed glow.
Bring a much-needed dose of sunshine to your skin with the NARS Laguna Bronzer.
This matte powder offers more of a healthy glow than a holiday tan with an array of hues for light to medium skin tones. It builds well, and a little goes a long way so brush lightly onto the areas of the face that the sun would hit naturally to leave your skin with a subtle sheen.
This is definitely a go-to all-year-round bronzer and one that you’ll keep buying over and over again.
£8.50 | Buy now
Why we love it: This matte bronzer from NYX Professional is not only affordable, but it’s also great for use all year round. This is because it blends well into the skin and is buildable, allowing you to go as deep or as light with your sun-kissed look as you like.
A little goes a long way, thanks to the fact it’s pigmented, and you get very little fall for such a cheap compact bronzer. We like to apply this over the top of a cream bronzer – such as the Anastasia Beverly Hills Cream Bronzer or the recently released Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Sun-Kissed bronzer – because it creates a smooth finish and helps the colour last all day.]
However, this matte bronzer has enough staying power to be used alone. All for less than a tenner.
£39 | Shop now
Why we love it: Charlotte Tilbury recently dropped a new foundation, called Beautiful Skin, that is designed to provide coverage in the short term and improve the texture and look of the skin in the long term.
Alongside this foundation release, the brand also announced the Charlotte Tilbury Beautiful Skin Sunkissed Bronzer. It’s more expensive, not to mention significantly larger than the Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Bronzer (detailed further down this list of best bronzers) but for the extra money, you get a host of skincare, and makeup benefits.
Namely, the Beautiful Skin Bronzer contains hyaluronic acid and Vitamin D3. The former helps hydrate and plump up the skin, while the latter helps brighten and improve the skin over time.
This bronzer has a cream-to-powder consistency which we don’t *love* because we never know whether to use a brush, blender or our fingers. Using a brush can make the bristles heavy and this can cause the application to be heavier than we’d like.
However, this is easily managed by simply applying less than you think you’ll need in the first instance before building up this bronzer to the level you feel happy with. Based on the time of day, the time of the year or what look you’re after.
£19 | Shop now
Why we love it? You get a lot of bang for your buck with this bronzing tint from the fabulous Dr. Hauschka.
Perfect for all skin tones, the Dr. Hauschka Translucent Bronzing Tint can be mixed with your usual daytime moisturiser. This allows you to create nuances and soften the appearance of blemishes and imperfections, for a faultless finish.
The best bit – there’s no streaks or orange tones, but you can mix as little or as much as you like to blend with your natural tone to achieve the ultimate golden glow.
£32 | Buy now
Why we love it: This cream bronzer from Anastasia Beverly Hills creates a lovely, subtle warmth to the skin with a matte finish that makes it look like it’s your natural tan.
It doesn’t streak, smudge or oxidise and because of its lightweight formula, it won’t mess with any other complexion products you either apply before or after it.
Another benefit of this bronzer is that it’s available in seven shades, rather than the standard four, allowing you to be more precise with the tone you choose.
We use this cream bronzer for both bronzing and contouring, especially our collarbone, because it provides such a natural finish.
£16 | Buy now
Why we love it: This face and hand mist is a great alternative to bronzer and super kind on the skin.
If you’re looking for a flawless, fuss-free glow then this is the product for you. A formula that has been created specifically for the face so not only can you achieve that elusive golden glow, but it delivers skincare benefits to boot. With Vitamins A and E, it nourishes skin and helps combat fine lines.
Best applied in the evening, the Lusso Face and Hand Mist will give a gradual light tan. Simply spritz onto skin, blend into the hairline and down the neck with a makeup brush and voila! It’s as easy as that.
One application left me with a streak-free tan for four days with no need to top up in-between. It’s worth noting though that it did have the faint biscuit smell you come to recognise with fake tan and it’s not so subtle when it’s on your hands and face!
Lusso Tan offers a full range of vegan and cruelty-free self-tanning products with easy application whilst protecting and hydrating the skin, including the ingenious Lusso Tan Bath Bomb designed to remove fake tan whilst you soak!
£39 | Shop now
Why we love it: A second entry for Charlotte Tilbury in our hunt for the best bronzer, but this one varies somewhat from the Beautiful Skin version that took our best Luxury Buy crown.
Available in four shades, this Airbrush Bronzer powder bronzer comes in a shell-shaped casing and will bring a flash of colour to pale and lacklustre skin. It doesn’t have the same skincare benefits as the more expensive Charlotte Tilbury bronzer, but this Airbrush version is also a lot smaller and compact.
It’s one of the latest editions to the wider Airbrush range and it’s a secret weapon for radiant skin. Its lightweight texture adds dimension and definition to the cheeks and wears like a second skin. Enhancing the natural pigments in the skin, the gentle hues kiss the face and give a subtle bronzed finish.
For those who are a little more adept at applying make-up (sadly not us!), this bronzer can also add some killer definition with some clever contouring to create cheekbones and enhance the collarbone.
You can view our editor’s article on the full Airbrush range to see what else is on offer too.
£28 | Buy now
Why we love it: This bronzer leaves you with a super shimmery and radiant finish.
Infused with real crushed diamond powder and light-reflecting pearls, the Too Faced Diamond Bronzer adds a glowing warmth to your complexion for dimension that works on any skin tone. It illuminates the skin whilst the subtle shimmer adds luminosity when applied to the cheekbones.
In addition, this incredibly fine and delicate powder can be layered to intensify the look. And it can be used individually as an eye shadow to create a coordinated and lasting finish.
Presented in a decorative box and carved into a diamond shape, this is the jewel of all bronzers with its beautiful shifting bronze, gold and copper tones, perfect for all complexions.
Victoria is founder and editor-in-chief of mamabella, freelance journalist and Mum. She has a passion for empowering people to feel beautiful whatever their age, size, skin type and budget