Blusher is a product I tend to waiver on, but bronzer is a non-negotiable. A subtle wash of warmth to the cheeks defies the UK climate and the right shade and finish can add the perfect pinch of colour negating the need for the highlighter, contour and blush bolt-ons. After attempting to slather on mismatched shades of foundation for too long I’ve got a new philosophy: be honest with myself and accept that the word ‘Ivory‘ usually appears in the name of the correct foundation colour for me, and to add a bit of bronzer to the appropriate places to sunkiss everything up instead. So here’s the need-to-know on four compacts of powdered sun I like to dust on all year round:

NARS Bronzing Powder in Laguna - £26 – from Space NK. My first real bronzer love. The subtle shimmers ramp up the glow without a chunk of glitter in sight, and the naturally warmed up tones just sort of pull everything together whenever I sweep it on. I tend to pick up the fluffiest brush I’ve got and go a bit wild when it comes to application with this one. Sorry I’m not sorry.

Giorgio Armani Sheer Bronzer in 1* – £31 – from Selfridges. Now doesn’t this look a little terrifying in the pan? Yep I too was a little bamboozled when I lifted the lid on Armani’s bronzer offering. But shunning the usual orangey tones for a russet hue – more akin to what my complexion looks like after a day in the sun, surprisingly works. And the sheer formula means it’s near impossible to go too overboard with this one.

Guerlain Terracotta Light Sheer Bronzing Powder in Brunettes – £33.50 – from FeelUnique. If Guerlain do one thing well, it’s bronzers. Never orange, never chalky – the definition of powdered sun. I’ve got a few in my ranks, but this pan is the one I always go back too. The most subtle of the four (and the prettiest), I reach for this on paler occasions when I need something to eke out some colour to my complexion.

CHANEL Les Beiges in B40 – £38 – from Selfridges. A lightweight, non-dectable wash of bronze, I tend to use this one – with the brush included in the compact, it’s an exception to the crappy applicator rule - for topping-up while en route. Whipping it out does add some glam to my tube journey. There’s some confusion over the function of these powders, but I like a bit of B40 round the edges of my face to give some much needed definition and B20 down the centre for that extra scrap of coverage.

Of course four is a tad unnecessary – but a girl’s got to have choices, right? I pick one and dust on that powdered sun come rain or shine, but mostly rain. Hey, it is the UK.

*PR Sample

  • bacardi chaser

    I´m the same….I sometimes use blushers, I sometimes don´t but I ALWAYS have bronzer on. :)

  • Ash

    The Guerlain one is so pretty!

  • molly

    i love bronzers, like you it’s the one thing i cannot go without wearing. i really need to try the nars laguna xxxx

  • BlogToBeAlive79

    I am a blush addict but use a Nars Laguna as a bronzer. It’s definitely the best for me since I have pale skin.

  • Siti Fatimah

    i love the way you write’s just so elegantly written..i am an aspiring beauty blogger and I never miss once reading your post..

  • mascarawarrior

    I love bronzer too! I’ve been using it a lot more than I’ve been using blush, which I usually can never get enough of. Gorgeous photo!

  • Sophie Davies

    Bronzer terrifies me. I am super pale and the thought of putting brown powder on my face makes me wince. Contouring I can do, a little light powder and hello cheekbones, but bronzer..? That’s still unknown territory for me.

  • Nicky Zeeb

    Bronzer is something my complexion doesn’t really take to unless I have a fake tan, or a very slow built natural one. But these do sound like they may work as a little colour addition! Can’t get enough blush though!


  • Millie Robinson

    I love Nars Laguna bronzer, definitely one of my all time favorites :) ♥

  • Deborah

    Oh, how I love me some bronzer! Jouer Perfect Tan is next on my list. Has anyone tried it? Great post! xx

  • Layla D
  • ClassyByMelissa

    You can never have too many blushes or bronzers in my opinion :)

  • Anya

    definitely eyeing up the Guerlain one now, especially as my Benefit Hoola has hit pan.

  • WY H

    Love to use Les Beiges for contouring and Laura Mercier Dune is one of my faves! x

  • Anine

    I haven’t tried any high end bronzers, but am saving up for the nars laguna!

  • Kelly C.

    I still haven’t managed to pick up laguna – I think I will during a friends and family event though! I’m still trying to use up my MAC Refined Golden bronzer – it just keeps going!

  • Maddy Cane

    The sheer bronzer looks amazing, I really want to try it! xxx

    Maddy from UNSTITCHEDD


  • Kate Rose

    As a pale girl, I too have a need for bronzer over blush. However, I’m yet to pick up Nars Laguna, I usually go for totally matt bronzers, but I may give this classic cult product a go.

  • Olivia S

    I love nars laguna! The Guerlain looks so pretty though Xx
    Olivia –

  • Helena Whitehead

    They all look so pretty! I want to try all these bronzers

  • Parisian To Be

    I bought NARS Laguna because of you and I couldn’t be happier. I reach for it everyday! If it’s good enough for Anna, it’s good enough for me!
    xo Lillian

  • disqus_KqkT7hjAY7

    Laguna has to be my fave! i tried benefits hoola and didn’t like it :(

  • alicekatex

    The Guerlain Terracotta bronzer looks identical to MUA’s offering which is also very good (and cheap!)

    Alice :)

  • DB

    Hi Anna! Love the blog. Budget-buy bronzer review?xx

  • Heels Forever

    The Chanel one looks so nice! Love the packaging of the product too but it’s so hard to get hold of! xx

    Heels forever

  • Justyna J

    I really really want to try the NARS one, looks very promising :)

  • @FlabbyFace

    I’ve use Guerlain for over 15 years as a bronzer. Scared to buy anything else as i don’t think i will ever find anything as natural and non orange.

  • Amy

    I really want to try that Chanel powder! I can’t seem to leave the house without some bronzer either, even on wet days! x

    Amy |

  • thebeautymist

    Definitely still need to try Nars Laguna:) x

  • Beautyandtheb

    Nars Laguna is my all time fave too!

    B xx

  • IreneK

    Being Chinese and living in Malaysia, where it is almost always 35 – 40 degrees, bronzer doesn’t get as much love in the beauty markets here. One makeup artist (Dior I think) shared that he almost got lynched in China for suggesting that women use bronzers,haha! Interesting to see how the paler lovelies want colours, but here in Asia, whitening products are HUGE! Some women bleach (not gradually, some salons actually offer that, think tanning salon in opposite) their faces with questionable and dangerous chemicals, which has raised some serious health concerns. The latest outburst is over an advert/product to whiten your down there — one video starts off with black coffee & one uninterested male specimen/husband; after weeks of using this miracle vajayjay wash, liquid in the cup became MILKY coffee and the said male is happy! Sorry I digressed so much. Love this post :)

  • RetroBunny

    I really love the top right bronzer, the colour is amazing, would work well with darker skin tones as well as lighter :)

  • Daniella

    I love bronzer! I am dying to try the too faced bronzer!

    • katie

      the too faced chocolate soleil bronzer is amazing! i’m sure you will LOVE it :) xx

  • Angela

    I’ve wanted to try Laguna for so long! I usually go for Benefit’s Hoola as a bronzer/contour in the summer x

  • Celina

    I finally got Laguna recently and I do like it! I’ve been sucked into getting all the NARS products!

  • Amber Hunter

    I just bought the benefit bronzer in hoola because I wanted a matte bronzer I’d be able to use for contouring as well. However, I also want to buy the Nars laguna because I’ve heard such incredible things about it. Although, living in South Florida I tend to always have a bit of color in my face.

    xx Amber

  • Allison

    The Giorgio Armani looks so gorgeous! My complexion looks awful in orange-y bronzers, and sometimes super brown ones are too much because I’m so pale! I will need to check that one out for sure!

  • Jessica Ringle

    I got the Guerlain sheer bronzer in Blondes even though I have dark hair because I’m paler than Casper the friendly ghost, and it is beyond beautiful. HG bronzer material fo sho. I’m debating on getting the Terracotta retractable kabuki brush to see if it makes a difference in the way it applies. Ever tried it?

  • Megan

    Bronzer is my favorite product! I’m guilty of going a tad crazy with it as well. ;) I really need to try out the Nars Laguna. Don’t know why I haven’t! I don’t think I’ve seen a bad thing said about it.

    Megan @

  • Claudia

    These all look gorgeous and LAGUNA has been on my wishlist for so long now. great post!