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Which bronzer palette is best?

When you want to give your skin a sun-kissed glow, a good bronzer palette is a great way to achieve dimension. Finding hues that match your skin tone and add subtle shimmer can make your skin look warm and bright any time of the year. If you’re looking for a high-quality bronzer palette that will bring out the best in your skin, Anastasia Beverly Hills Face Palette in Italian Summer comes with a bronzer, a blush and a highlighter, making it a true triple-threat bronzer product.

What to know before you buy a bronzer palette

Level of shimmer

Some of the first bronzers were all about intense shine, but newer options may have a hint of sparkle or a red carpet level of shine. Play with the amount of shimmer that looks best on you. Darker skin tones and tan skin can hold a bit more shimmer, while paler skin looks lovely with a mix of contour and bronzing.

Cream vs. powder

Cream or liquid bronzers are a smart choice for dry skin that needs extra moisture. Even though powders tend to look more subtle, they may not make skin look as smooth. If you prefer using powdered bronzer and have dryer skin, try to use the powder sparingly and blend well.

Cool vs. warm colors

The trick to making a bronzer work for you is to choose a palette with undertones that match your skin. You want to replicate how your skin looks after you’ve been on vacation in a sunny spot. Cool skin looks fantastic with peachy shimmers. Warm skin tones work best with the warmer colors many associate with bronzers. If you’ve ever felt that a tone looked too obvious on your skin, you may have used a color that didn’t work for your skin tone. It’s worth it to try different shades to find the right match.

What to look for in a quality bronzer palette


Find a bronzer palette with a range of options, so you can wear bronzer with evening looks and casual day makeup. A versatile palette should have subtler colors alongside bolder ones, as well as a range of shimmers and mattes. Night looks and warm summer weekends lend themselves to more shine. For daytime, stick with a subtle hint of shimmer.

Color saturation

Take time to find out what your usual preferences are for color intensity in your makeup application. Choosing a bronzer with a lighter tint allows for layering, so if you’re newer to bronzer or like a more natural look, choose a palette with more sheer coverage. Powders tend to offer more sheer options and are easier for beginners.

Skin health

Know your skin’s tendencies when choosing a bronzer. Skin that’s prone to breakouts works well with a powder or a water-based, noncomedogenic cream. Skin prone to drying may benefit from an oil-based cream full of moisturizing ingredients.

How much you can expect to spend on a bronzer palette

A good drugstore bronzer palette costs around $15. Expect to pay $40-$60 for premium brands.

Bronzer palette FAQ

Should I use bronzer or blush?

A. Bronzer adds a warm, healthy tone to your skin, so it’s suitable for weekends and fun nights out. Blush can add a hint of color without the shimmer usually associated with bronzer, so it tends to be more suited for work and daytime looks.

Can I contour with bronzer?

A. Yes, if you apply it properly. As with contour, you’ll want to use your dark bronzer in the hollows where you want to simulate shadows. The key is to apply sparingly, use a highlight shade and blend well.

Can I apply bronzer to oily skin?

A. You can, but if excessive shine is a concern, aim for a more satin bronzer. Apply it sparingly and keep it away from the areas most likely to product shine, like on your nose and forehead.

What’s the best bronzer palette to buy?

Top bronzer palette 

Anastasia Beverly Hills Face Palette in Italian Summer

Anastasia Beverly Hills Face Palette in Italian Summer

What you need to know: This versatile palette offers a bronzer, highlighter and blush for a full application of color and a hint of shimmer.

What you’ll love: Its soft texture feels light and delicate on your skin with ease. It’s as smooth as a powder can get and works well with oily or dry skin.

What you should consider: Since it only comes with one shade of bronzer, you’ll want to test if the color suits you.

Where to buy: Sold by Sephora

Top bronzer palette for the money

Physicians Formula Murumuru Butter Bronzer Palette

Physicians Formula Murumuru Butter Bronzer Palette

What you need to know: The murumuru butter adds a luxurious feel to this formula, making it seem almost like a combination between powder and cream.

What you’ll love: With a range of bronzer color shades in this palette, you’re likely to find one or two colors that blend well to match your skin perfectly, adding just the right combination of warmth and shimmer.

What you should consider: This bronzer is a bit smaller, so if you go through a lot of product, you’ll need to restock sooner than you may like.

Where to buy: Sold by Ulta Beauty

Worth checking out

Beauty Bakerie Coffee Cocoa Bronzer Palette

Beauty Bakerie Coffee & Cocoa Bronzer Palette

What you need to know: This product is highly blendable and pigmented, so you can control the amount of color you apply.

What you’ll love: This generously sized cult favorite offers long-lasting, standout color that looks good on most skin tones. It’s blendable, buildable and has some unexpected shades that are beautiful and flattering.

What you should consider: This palette offers a lot of shine and bold colors, so if you’re looking for a subtle bronzer, pass this one by.

Where to buy: Sold by Ulta Beauty

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Maria Andreu writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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