A while ago I decided that I needed a decent bronzer, so I gave my Essence sun club bronzer to my mom as it just wasn’t right for my skin tone. Then I ordered the e.l.f studio golden bronzer, which looked so promising but had hardly any colour payoff. So I decided to go with Clarins, a trusted brand, and got their bronzing duo in 02 medium. This costs R375 in South Africa. This is what it is supposed to look like before it is defaced (more on that in a minute).
First of all I have to say that I love the packaging of this! The compact has a brown tortoiseshell coloured lid and comes in a brown velvet Clarins pouch to keep the compact safe. I think it is very classy and French. I also like that the bronzer is two-toned with a lighter, slightly shimmery section and darker section.
I bought this bronzer partly because it had good reviews online. However, I have been having some struggles with it. Firstly, it seemed to have a hard layer on top and my brushes couldn’t pick up the colour. The hard layer started wearing through in places and I could see a slightly different shade underneath, as though the top layer had oxidized or been compacted. I couldn’t get enough on the brush to get it to show up on my face. So, I finally grabbed some kitchen towel and a chopstick *cringe* and literally scraped the hard layer off the top, losing a whole lot of bronzer in the process, and making my compact look like a dog’s breakfast. After the sandpapering I gave it, brushes seem to be able to collect product better. As you can see from the swatch below it is quite light and would definitely be better suited to paler skin.
What I like about it is the natural finish. Even with a lot of powder applied it doesn’t look like my skin has powder on it. So it doesn’t look cakey or noticeable at all, just gives a natural-looking change in colour. Secondly, it isn’t orange or visibly shimmery at all.
What I don’t think I like is that this bronzer looks slightly pink-toned on my face, so I look more like I have a light sunburn than a light tan. Not sure if that is the look I am going for. So while I like the packaging and how light and natural the bronzer is, I fear I must continue on my quest to find the perfect one for me. NARS Laguna is seriously calling my name…