Are you tempted to cling on to your post-holiday glow by reaching for layer upon layer of sparkly bronzer?
Stop right there — because subtly applying the right shade of shimmer for your skin, and using a few tricks known only to make-up artists, will give you a natural and sexier radiance in the weeks ahead.
If you want to hang on to your holiday colour or boost colour you missed out on thanks to a wet staycation, decide which skin tone you are first, says Amanda Bell, director of artistry for Pixi Beauty.
‘When used in a way that enlivens your complexion, a glow prolongs a tanned look and gives skin a fresh, dewy finish,’ she adds.
‘Creamy textures give a polished look that is simple and so flattering. Pearl and blush tones look amazing on cooler skin tones, while rose gold and peach are beautiful on neutral skin. Meanwhile, antique gold and caramels are exquisite on warmer skins.’
Glow-getting should be applied to the body too. Bronzers and lustre can add the illusion of contours while giving limbs a holiday vibe.
Simply stick to the post-summer mantra — more delicate, less glitter explosion.
Prep work with self-tan provides the perfect canvas.
‘Self-tan gives skin a sense of wellbeing,’ says feted tanning artist James Read. ‘It adds tone and shadows that give the appearance of healthy skin, which work as the ideal base.’
Choose a high-tech formula for colour depth.
‘Pick a product that fits your beauty regime, then leave it on for the amount of development time it takes to match your make-up look,’ advises Read.
Use James Read Glow20 Facial Tan Serum (£25,) for 20 minutes to get a light glow or up to 90 minutes to get an intense bronze.
And for the body, St Moriz Professional 1 Hour Fast Tan Mist (£4.99) can be rinsed off after between one and three hours, when your skin is at the desired shade.
Just as contouring adds definition to your face, bronzer can help you sculpt shoulders, collarbones and even calves. Just use a bronzing cream or powder a few shades darker than your own skin tone where you want a shadow — this adds depth and dimension.
Tanning expert Amanda Harrington has developed ‘The Italian Shoulder’ technique, which elongates the neck while sculpting the shoulders and décolletage.
Using Amanda Harrington London Illuminating Bronzing Body Mousse (£36) and Small Body Brush (£32), apply the self-tan in small, circular movements and buff down the outside of the neck, along the points of the shoulders and collarbone, in the middle of the chest and around the triceps for a toned and contoured look.
Or for all-over radiance, & Other Stories Perle de Coco Glow Body Lotion (£11) is infused with delicate bronze pearls that give a soft shimmer while light-reflective properties hide imperfections.
Soft shading adds dimension.
‘A bespoke approach with minimal glow applied to the highest points of the face, bridge of the nose and Cupid’s bow is really flattering,’ says Amanda.
To create delicate shading in a satin texture that melts into skin, try Sculpted by Aimee Connolly Cream Luxe Bronze (£16).
Tap into the hollows of cheeks and along the hairline for definition. Smart cosmetics companies have realised women of colour use creamy, matte bronzers for a warm post-summer glow.
Chanel’s Les Beiges Healthy Glow Bronzing Cream (£43) now comes in a rich Soleil Tan Deep Bronze shade that smooths on seamlessly.
If you prefer a finish with more lustre, Glossier Solar Paint Luminous Bronzer Crème (£17) is infused with light-reflective gold and copper pearl particles that give an instant glow.
In four shades, try tapping under the jawline for a sculpting optical effect.
Eyes are the most foolproof place to add luminosity. For a dewy shot of intense peachy gold, sweep Cosmetics à La Carte Luminous Cream Shadow Dream (££28) over eyelids with a fingertip and get a hint of glimmer.
Whether you want to line eyes or create a smoky look, Laura Mercier RoseGlow Caviar Stick Eye Colour (£25) are quick to apply.
Each of the pigment-rich shades adds gleam, including burgundy Rose Thorn.
For a metallic finish suited to a night out, Suqqu Tone Touch Eyes in no.107 (£24) is a yellow gold with micro-specks of pink and green metallics worked through the pressed powder for a modern look.
Finish off your glowing look with a metallic or shimmer gloss in rose, candyfloss and toffee shades.
We’ve picked out four of our favourites below.
No7 Bronze Heat High Shine Lip Gloss in Pink Bubbly
A pretty rose enlivened with delicate sparkle.
Buy it for £10 from Boots
Pixi Lip Icing in Cookie
A suits-all candyfloss shade shot through with fine golden particles that add 3D luminosity.
Buy it for £16 from Pixi Beauty
Beauty Pie Wondergloss
Toffee tone-infused with golden particles that make lips look fuller.
Buy it for £6.84 (members, £26 for non-members) from Beauty Pie
Pat McGrath Lust Gloss
A balm-like gloss available in 35 dazzling (but thankfully, non-stick) shades to wear alone or over lipstick.
Buy it for £26 from Pat McGrath
This article contains affiliate links. We may earn a small commission on purchases made through one of these links but this never influences our experts’ opinions. Products are tested and reviewed independently of commercial initiatives.
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