Should I Use a Powder or Cream Bronzer?

Picking a bronzer means deciding on the shade, finish, AND formula that work best for you.

Picking a bronzer doesn’t just mean deciding on the shade and finish; it also means choosing which formula works best for you. For most people, powder bronzer is the obvious choice. But cream bronzers are becoming more popular due to their dewy finish and ease of application.

It’s important you assess your skin type and determine what look you're going for in order to choose the perfect bronzer for you.


Should I use a powder or cream bronzer?


A dewy finish or a matte finish?

Cream and powder bronzers produce very different finishes, and it's down to personal preference on which you go for.

Cream bronzers give your skin a dewy finish, and even if they don’t contain much shimmer, they still give your skin a sheen due to their moist texture. The radiant finish of a creamy colour can make your skin look youthful and fresh. We recommend the BECCA Lowlight/Highlight Perfecting Palette.

For an all-over glow, you can mix some cream bronzer into your liquid foundationDr. Hauschka Translucent Bronzing Tint was specifically created to warm and deepen your base.

A powder bronzer gives you a more natural finish. Even bronzers with a lot of shimmer, such as Éstee Lauder Bronze Goddess Bronzing Powder, have a velvety feel and a mattifying effect on the skin. Often, people prefer using glowy cream bronzers in summer and more understated powder bronzers in winter.


Should I use a powder or cream bronzer?


Choosing a bronzer based on your skin type

Unfortunately, choosing a bronzer isn’t all about how you want your skin to look. You also have to work with what you’ve already got.

If you have oily skin, you're best off using a powder, as a cream bronzer is prone to creasing and will make your complexion appear oilier. You should also use powder bronzers to mattify and flatten the appearance of blemishes.

If you have dry skin, powder products can enhance the dryness, so you're better off using a cream bronzer or mixing one into your base.

Other pointers to consider when choosing your bronzer

There are a few other aspects to consider when choosing between a cream and powder bronzer. Cream bronzers are typically easier to apply, whereas some powders can be difficult to blend. However, cream products generally don’t have the longevity that powders do.

You should also consider your base. If you're using a powder foundation, never use a cream bronzer on top, as it won't sit well. It’s less strict the other way round, as you can use a powder bronzer over a liquid foundation.

Your choice of cream or powder bronzer isn't set in stone. You can switch formulas according to the season or your mood. But do consider your skin type and your desired finish if you want to love your new bronzer.


Should I use a powder or cream bronzer?

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