Glam Tip: Bronze All Over

-By Sophie Elkus –

Bronze Makeup

Inspiration photo: British Vogue

It’s officially August – and if you haven’t just returned from a trip to Cancun or St. Barths, chances are you’d like to look like you have.  Using bronze-toned makeup is an easy way to add vibrancy and warmth to your face, and nearly every skin tone can benefit from a golden hue.  Here are a few quick tips to not only work some bronze shades into your summer beauty routine but to look like a golden goddess all over.

Start with a base glow. It’s a lot easier to wear bronze-toned makeup when your skin is starting with a little boost. A subtle tan will enhance the golden shades in your makeup and pull it all together.  While too-tan skin is passé, fake a natural glow that appears no more than a couple shades darker than your natural color by using a nickel-sized dollop of a gentle self tanner (for the face). Apply it to clean, dry skin at bedtime and by morning you’ll have a subtle glow.

Illuminate. If you’re not already using an illuminator, add it to your makeup routine as they catch the sunlight and brighten your face beautifully. For fair skin tones, a pink-based illuminator (Nars the Multiple in Copacabana) will highlight your browbone, upper cheekbones and cupid’s bow area above the lip.  Darker skin tones benefit from a golden-based illuminator like Benefit’s “Sun Beam”.

Contour the Eyes.  All you need are two eye shades for an easy bronze summer look. The first should be a true golden shade. Lighter skin tones benefit from champagne tones while darker skin tones can pull off a more bronzed hue.  Use an all-over eyeshadow brush to apply the shade across your lid, blending it up toward your eye crease.  The second shade should be complimentary but darker, closer to a light brown. Use a smaller brush to blend it into your crease in a sideways “V” shape.  Don’t worry, it’s alright if your application isn’t “perfect” – the result should be easy and summery and choosing shades close in color will minimize any harsh distinction and make blending a cinch. Finish with liner and mascara as desired.

A Dash of Bronzer. To achieve a believable glow, don’t overdo this step.  A bit of bronzer in the hollows of your cheeks and swiped across your temples is all you need to compliment the tones of your eye makeup.

Finish with Gloss. Lipstick has no place in an easy bronzed look for summer so swap your usual rosey stick for a subtle nude gloss.  It’s difficult to find a gold-toned lipgloss without large glitter flecks, and true gold doesn’t always flatter everyone’s lips.  Instead, an iridescent nude gloss will add a bit of polish to this look without distracting from the focus of the eye makeup.


Sophie Elkus is the founder and editor of, a personal style, trend and beauty blog.  Based out of LA, you can follow her on Twitter and Instagram @sophieelkus

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