76° Good Afternoon
76° Good Afternoon

How to apply bronzer for a warm and natural tan

Bronze, copper, rich cocoa brown -- a summer tan runs a wide spectrum, and your makeup regimen from winter might not cut it once warmer hues brighten your face. But there's more to making this seasonal switch than changing the color of your foundation (you may want to ditch the foundation altogether).

Subtle sheens on the skin and fun pops of color on the nails and lips will help create a look that's fresh -- and, most important, natural.

"As the skin gets tanner it gets deeper, warmer undertones," says makeup artist Spencer Barnes, who works with

PHOTOS: Applying bronzer step-by-step

Taylor Swift and Julianne Hough. "Adding similar warm shades of makeup has a glamorous effect because you don't notice the makeup but rather the glow and contours on the skin, which looks hydrated and youthful." He recommends a go-to color palette of apricots, bronze tones and fresh tropical pinks for making a healthy tan look even better.

Barnes starts with powder bronzer, the easiest and safest way to enhance or create a tan on your face, andrecommends two that he calls "foolproof": Casino by Nars and Hoola by Benefit ($30 and $28, respectively, atSephora). "They look radiant and natural on everyone," he says.

For a deeper color that doesn't look artificial, he recommends starting with a medium-sized soft, round brush.Gently swirl the brush over the bronzer and dust off any excess on the back of your hand.

Work the powder onto areas of the face where the sun naturally falls.

"Think of when you're out in the sun and where it hits you first," Barnes says.

This means across the forehead near the hairline, the temples, across the apples of the cheeks and bridge of thenose. Sweep some color beneath the jaw line and hit your collarbone and decolletage. If you're pale and have yourhair pulled up, don't forget to cover the nape and back of the neck.

The result is a natural hint of warm summer color without the tangerine smudginess that comes from a bottle ortanning booth.

PHOTOS: Applying bronzer step-by-step


We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.

More news