Best bronzers 2022: the beauty team’s favourite buys

Best bronzers 2022: the beauty team’s favourite buys

Move over contour, because the soft, all-over glow of the best bronzers has well and truly made a comeback.

While nothing can quite compare to a holiday spent basking in the sun’s rays, picking the right bronzer for your skin type can leave you looking sun-kissed – without the skin damage.

These days bronzers come in all shapes and forms, from matte powders to glossy creams – but which is right for you? OK!’s beauty team has tested dozens over the years to bring you a selection of the very best products for a golden glow…

The best bronzers to shop in 2022

Guerlain Terracotta Matte Sculpting Powder, £38 here

For a shine-free finish this pressed powder contains kaolin clay and comes in three different shades: Light, Medium and Deep.

Beauty editor Laura says: "The name’s not wrong – this is light-absorbingly matte. For this reason I found it works better as a contour powder – instead of ON my cheekbones, I applied it slightly underneath them. The shade Light was a great colour for my fair complexion."

Rare Beauty Warm Wishes Effortless Bronzer, £22 here

Available in five different shades, this bronzer by Selena Gomez's brand Rare Beauty adds natural-looking warmth to the skin with a matte finish.

Beauty writer Lucy says: "I don't want to sound dramatic but the more I've used this bronzer, the more I've fallen in love with it. It's matte without being flat, adds a lovely bit of warmth to skin without being orange and lasts pretty well considering my skin is on the oily side. If you are committed to contouring, the stick format lends itself well to that, too."

Fenty Beauty Cheeks Out Freestyle Cream Bronzer, £29 here

There’s no chance of not being able to find the right colour for you, as this bronzer is available in seven shades. It has a semi-matte finish and dries quickly, so won’t slip and slide around your face on a hot day.

Laura says : "Creams are usually my bronzer formula of choice and I immediately loved the butteriness of this one. I applied it using a densely-bristled foundation brush and it blended out beautifully sheer. If, like me, you worry you may have picked a shade slightly too dark, don’t – it’s actually very hard to overdo it."

Revlon SkinLights Prismatic Bronzer, £6.99 here

Like a bronzer and a highlighter in one, this pretty powder gives a glowy finish to the skin and comes in three light-reflective shades.

Laura says: “A beautiful, finely-milled powder which gives a gorgeous, naturally radiant finish. It looks as if it will be super shimmery but there’s actually just a scattering of subtle sparkle – no glittery cheekbones here. The shades are on the warmer side but the colour payoff is quite light, which means it’s hard to look orange.”

Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Bronzer, £42 here

From the same line as Charlotte Tilbury’s Airbrush Flawless Finish Powder, which sells one every minute, the bronzer comes in four very flexible shades, which have been tested on the very palest to the very deepest skin tones.

Laura says: "This gives the same lovely finish as the Airbrush powder – matte and perfected, as if a filter has been applied to the skin, blurring pores and evening out the skin tone. The gorgeous compact is pricey but HUGE (bigger than my hand!) and refillable, so it won’t be a regular expense."

IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores Bronzer, £27 here

Another pore-smoothing powder, and it contains blurring technology to soften the look of imperfections. Like all IT Cosmetics make-up, this is also full of skin-friendly ingredients like hyaluronic acid and vitamins A, C and E.

Laura says: “I tried the lighter of the two shades and it warmed up my complexion in a very natural-looking way. The texture is very smooth and gives a lovely finish, soft and subtle with no harsh lines. Foolproof to apply, this would be a great choice for bronzer beginners.”

Catrice Clean ID Mineral Bronzer SPF15, £4.99 here

A bargain bronzer with a vegan formula and the added benefit of an SPF (although this shouldn't be relied on as your only sun protection).

Laura says: “ The colour leans towards the warmer end of the bronze-y spectrum so anyone with cool-toned skin may find it a little too orange, but it blends easily and has a very ‘skin-like’ finish (matte but not dull and powdery). I often apply bronzer as eyeshadow but I found this irritated my sensitive eyes slightly – perhaps because of the SPF ingredients – so keep it away from this area.”

Dior Forever Natural Bronzer, £40 here

Made using 95% mineral-origin pigments, this flattering bronzer comes in eight different shade options that span a broad range, and is housed in a beautiful compact.

Lucy says: "Finding a bronzer that suits pale skin can be tricky, but this Dior number adds natural-looking warmth even when my skin is at its most ghostly and has a really nice, natural finish. Plus if you love designer packaging, you'll love the couture-inspired compact."

Top tips for applying the best bronzer

* "To find the right shade of bronzer, pick one that’s the same colour as your skin naturally tans, and has the same undertone as your skin (i.e. warm, cool or neutral)," advises Bobbi Brown Pro Artist Zara Findley.

* "Before applying powder bronzer, use a translucent powder very lightly first. This will make it glide on more easily and give a more even look," says Revlon make-up artist Malin Coleman.

* "I apply bronzer in circular motions with a kabuki brush on my cheeks, up to the temples, under my chin to shorten it, down the sides of my nose and underneath to contour it and across my eyelids," says Charlotte Tilbury MBE.

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