e.l.f. Discovery

5 Expert-Approved Places to Apply Bronzer for a Year-Round Glow

By Victoria Benitez

Embracing a sun-kissed glow isn’t reserved for the summer alone. You can achieve that year-round glow with one product alone. Whether you’re trying to maintain a summer tan or achieve a natural, radiant look during winter, our unsung hero is a bronzer. As seasons change, so will your complexion, but don’t worry, we’ve got you covered on how to create glowy makeup looks to carry you through every season. You can pick up any bronzer and transform your skin into a luminous, bronzed babe with a few application tips. With its versatility, you can contour, highlight, and illuminate the skin to achieve a tanned look regardless of the weather.

The first step is selecting the best shade to complement your skin tone. Reach for a bronzer without shimmer for a seamless and natural finish to provide a clean, sculpted look. If you want to mimic the sun’s gentle touch for a natural face glow, bronzers with a hint of shimmer can enhance your features, adding a subtle luminosity. It’s all about learning how to apply makeup for a bronzed skin look strategically! Incorporating a bronzer into your makeup routine will unlock the secret to an eternal summer glow from the high points of your face to your jawline. Skip basking in the sun, and here’s how to use our coveted bronzers whether you want to be sculpted, bronzed, or both!


Sculpting your way to a snatched makeup look is more straightforward than it looks. For a defined cheekbone, pick up your go-to contour brush and bronzer and begin by selecting a shade slightly darker than your skin tone. Place the bronzer in the hollows of your cheeks with an angled brush, blending the product upwards towards your temples. Applying bronzer strategically along your cheekbones in an upward direction will help to define your facial structure and add dimension.

We often opt for a matte or cream bronzer for this step. This technique will accentuate your cheekbones through a natural shadowing effect. It’s essential to start with a light hand to avoid harsh facial lines. We’re looking to define the cheekbone structure naturally. You can always build up and layer the product gradually. Don’t forget to blend! Less is often more in this step. Mastering bronzing your cheekbones is the first step in building a sculpted look.

Temples and Hairline

Once you’ve defined your cheekbones, you’ll want to sweep your bronzer along the temples and across your hairline. The sun will naturally hit the face and enhance contours in this area of the face. This is a critical step to create depth and bring warmth back into the skin. We recommend reaching for a fluffy brush when applying bronzer to this area to ensure the product is seamlessly blended softly. A natural transition of bronzer is key here to avoid any harsh, unsettling lines.

Again, when using bronzer, you can always build up the intensity of the product so always start with a small amount. This simple yet effective technique can transfer the face and give off the most gorgeous second-skin finish. Swipe on weightless, defining warmth for a touch of sunlit radiance. You’ll be bronzed in a blink!


Your passport to radiant, sun-kissed skin extends beyond the face regardless of the season. Our secret beauty tip for the best glow is applying bronzer to your collarbones. For this skin-glowing technique, find a shade that best compliments your skin. Any shimmering bronzer is guaranteed to catch someone’s gaze.

Its purpose on the collarbones is to accentuate the contours of your upper body. Trust the process when applying the bronzer to your collarbone. You’ll eventually see the allure of this extra step to luminous, tanned skin. This step refines every angle of your entire look. Gently sweep the bronzer along your collarbones with a soft brush to enhance your bone structure. Warning: a little attention is guaranteed!


Which step is your best fit for a sculpted look? Our golden rule is never to skip the jawline! It’s a subtle yet impactful hack to contour to the face truly. Like the cheekbones, choose a matte bronzer slightly darker than your skin tone and contour brush to create a natural shadow effect.

Start below your earlobes and blend the bronzer toward your chin to create the illusion of a chiseled facial structure. This step is pretty foolproof and too good to skip! Not only does it define the jawline, but it also helps to create a lifted look by accentuating and defining for a sculpted finish.


Don’t stop, keep glowing! Your last and final step is optional, but with the right amount of pigment, you can add an extra dimension to finish your look. With a sweep of liquid bronzer across the eyelids, this is how you naturally can illuminate the eyes and achieve that no-makeup-makeup look. It’s the go-to trick for many makeup artists.

This quick tip can easily replace your eyeshadow because it’s more forgiving and can sculpt the shape of your eyes naturally. Whether you want to wear the bronzer alone or pair it with other eye makeup products, you can quickly transform your makeup from day to night using a bronzer as a transition shade. You really only need a fluffy eye blending brush with this step and your favorite contour wand to achieve a natural, multidimensional glow. Watch how this simple step will make your eyes pop and bring light back to the eye for that sparkling effect.

Products to Help You Look Sun-Kissed Year-Round

Beach, please. Bring on the bronze! Whether you’re an expert contour-er or a total newbie, we’ve simplified bronzing. Our wide range of products, from cream to powder, are made to blend and sculpt your face easily. You can stay in the shade and still get sun-kissed with our collection. Your final resort to achieving a sun-kissed look is finding your perfect match.

For a softer-focus glow, we recommend the Halo Glow Liquid Filter; this is our trick to achieving that social filter effect IRL, available in twelve flexible shades to match a range of skin tones and undertones. With four ways to wear it, this multi-use glow-boosting liquid filter will quickly become a staple in your routine. If you’re the type that likes a bang for your buck, we suggest opting for our classic Powder Contour Palette, available in powd form. You’ll become a contour convert and expert in no time with these bronzers.

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