12 Best Bronzer Brushes 2022 – WWD

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When you’re looking to get that natural-looking glow with makeup, choosing the best tan is only half the battle. That’s right: you need to think about what brush to use as well. That’s where bronzer brushes come in, and you’ll soon see why they deserve a spot among your favorite makeup brushes.

But what is a bronzer brush? According to celebrity makeup artist Jamie Dorman, bronzer brushes tend to be fluffy and have finer hairs that deposit product lightly. While you could theoretically use a foundation or blush brush for your bronzer, michelle clarkMAC Cosmetics Senior National Artist, says that “it’s always nice to have a specific brush for bronzer so that it doesn’t get muddied with foundation, blush or other products.”

Dorman adds that it’s best to look for a brush that is specifically made for bronzer because “most powder brushes are too dense for bronzer and will apply it too intensely to be blended well.”

What to look for in the best bronzer brushes

“As far as bristles go, keep this tip in mind: Your tool choice should match the effect you are trying to achieve,” says Clark. She adds that for a diffused, natural look, you’ll want softer bristles, but for a more striking look, “the tighter and more dense the bristles should be.”

For powder-based bronzers, Dorman says more is more when it comes to choosing the right bronzer brush. “Powder bronzer brushes tend to be quite full and fluffy,” she says. “The bristles are usually not tightly packed.”

She suggests duo-fiber bristles with synthetic tips for liquid bronzers, as those bristles can be flattened or rounded to disperse product steadily and gently.

Top Bronzer Brushes of 2022

How to use a bronzer brush

Bronzer in general is placed on high points of your face, like the forehead, cheekbones, bridge of the nose, and chin. Clark says how you use a bronzer brush depends on what type of effect you’re looking for and what type of brush you end up using.

“Your brush choice will make it easy for you to create the right vibe, whether it’s an all-over deepening, a sun-kissed glow, or a sculpted contoured feel,” she says.

For a more sculpted look or all over bronze, she says to go for a large kabuki style brush with densely packed bristles. For more lightweight application, she likes a soft fluffy brush that you can sweep over cheekbones, nose, forehead, and jawline.

With these details in mind, both Clark and Dorman share their thoughts on the best bronzer brushes. Read on to find the best one for you.

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Real Techniques Sculpting Brush

  • Brush length: 8.25 in.
  • Bristle type: Vegan

Rave reviews at a wallet-friendly price? It’s pretty hard to beat the Real Techniques Sculpting Brush. This angled bronzer brush is great for defining cheekbones, but soft and fluffy enough to swipe product across the forehead, down your nose, or anywhere else you’d like a little bronzer to go. It’s also versatile and can be used with either liquid or cream bronzers.

Real Techniques bronzer brush

Courtesy of Amazon


Real Techniques Sculpting Brush

$13

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Mypreface Synthetic Bronzer Brush

  • Brush length: 6.3 in.
  • Bristle type: Synthetic

Tea Mypreface Synthetic Bronzer Brush is an angled kabuki brush with smooth, flexible bristles that ensures bronzer will go on lightly, so you can build and blend as much as you’d like. It also doesn’t shed, which means it’ll have a longer lifespan than one that loses brushes easily. It works for any type of bronzer formulation, from liquid to cream to powder.

Mypreface bronzer brush


Mypreface Synthetic Bronzer Brush

$7

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Too Faced Retractable Kabuki Brush

Too Faced’s Retractable Kabuki Brush is small and compact, making it easy to store or take with you wherever you go. It’s also retractable, so you can throw it into your bag without worrying about ruining the shape or dirtying the bristles. Many reviewers commented on how soft the bristles are and how well it distributes the product. Plus, you can’t be mad at the adorable pink packaging.

Too Faced bronzer brush


Too Faced Retractable Kabuki Brush

$36

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Elf Cosmetics Flawless Face Brush

  • Brush length: About 7 in.
  • Bristle type: Synthetic, vegan

For a sheer, natural-looking flash of bronzer, turn to the Elf Cosmetics Flawless Face Brush. Reviewers love its foolproof application to deliver really pretty color on their cheeks. Plus, the bristles are synthetic, vegan, and cruelty-free. And did we mention it’s only $6? What a steal.

Elf Cosmetics bronzer brush


Elf Cosmetics Flawless Face Brush

$4

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Sigma Beauty F29 HD Bronze Makeup Brush

  • Brush length: About 9 inches
  • Bristle type: Synthetic

Tea Sigma Beauty F29 HD Bronze Makeup Brush allows for sheer coverage. Alternatively, you can layer on a few swipes of product for more medium coverage to look like you just got back from a tropical vacation. Its bristles are synthetic, vegan, cruelty-free, and hypoallergenic.

Sigma Beauty bronzer brush


Sigma Beauty F29 HD Bronze Makeup Brush

$31

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EcoTools Travel Kabuki Brush

  • Brush length: 8 in.
  • Bristle type: Vegan

For your travel needs (or if you just need a brush to throw in your bag), the EcoTools Travel Kabuki Brush is your best bet. One of its best features is that it is retractable to provide extra protection for the delicate bristles. It’s also designed with sensitive skin in mind and it’s made of eco-friendly materials.

EcoTools bronzer brush


EcoTools Travel Kabuki Brush

$9

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Fenty Beauty Cheek Hugging Bronzer Brush 190

  • Brush length: 9 in.
  • Bristle type: Synthetic

Tea Fenty Beauty Cheek Hugging Bronzer Brush 190 is super plush and the angled bristles sculpt the curves of your face to create the illusion of sky-high cheekbones. “If you were debating about getting this brush — GET IT,” reads one review. “It’s incredible and perfectly fits your cheekbone and the bristles are so soft.”

Fenty Beauty bronzer brush


Fenty Beauty Cheek Hugging Bronzer Brush 190

$36

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Tarte Cosmetics Bronze & Glow Contour Brush

We love a good two-in-one product. This double-ended brush from Tart covers all of your highlighting, contouring, and bronzing needs. The smaller end is intended for bronzing and you’ll see that the synthetic bristles allows you to easily glide the product across your cheeks. You can rely on this high quality brush to outlive many of the others in your kit.

Tarte bronzer brush


Tarte Cosmetics Bronze & Glow Contour Brush

$34

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MAC Cosmetics 168 Synthetic Wide Angled Contour Brush

  • Bristle type: Synthetic

“Hands down, the 168 Synthetic Large Angled Contour Brush is one of my favorite angled brushes out there,” says Clark. “The shape is perfect for hugging the jawline, carving out the cheekbone and sculpting the forehead.” She adds that this brush works great for either a cream or powder bronzer.

MAC Cosmetics makeup brush


MAC Cosmetics 168 Synthetic Wide Angled Contour Brush

$38

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Rephr Brush 22

  • Bristle length: 48 mm
  • Bristle type: Uncut, natural hair

One of Dorman’s picks for best bronzer brush is the Rephr Brush 22. “[It] is a large, impossibly soft brush due to it being made with uncut natural hair,” she says. “Each hair is shaped by placement rather than by cutting, so the hair texture is the gentlest it can be.” Although you may get sticker shock, it has five stars and over 1,000 reviews, with shoppers commenting on its fluffy feel and how it gets bronzer to look super natural.

Rephr bronzer brush


Rephr Brush 22

$110

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Westmore Beauty Charcoal Infused Powder Brush

Westmore Beauty Charcoal Infused Powder Brush is a great option for powder brushes,” says Dorman. “They are vegan, soft and deposit products evenly.”

Westmore Beauty bronzer brush


Westmore Beauty Charcoal Infused Powder Brush

$27

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Zoeva Cosmetics 125

  • Brush length: 17cm
  • Bristle type: Synthetic

Another one of Dorman’s go-tos is the Zoeva Cosmetics 125. “[It] is a flat duo fiber brush that will work for liquids and creams,” she says. “It blends gently so you don’t get too much product in one spot.” Many reviewers agree that it is the perfect bronzer brush.

Zoeva bronzer brush


Zoeva Cosmetics 125

$20

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The best way to clean and care for your bronzer brush

To keep your brushes in tip top shape, it’s essential to keep up with a cleaning routine. Both Clark and Dorman say that bronzer brushes should be cleaned weekly, using your choice of brush cleanser or mild soap.

Dorman breaks it down even further, saying brushes that applied powder-based products should be washed once a week — week and a half, tops — and brushes used with liquid or cream bronzers should be washed every two to three days, with spot cleaning in between. To clean her bronzer brush, she uses a brush cleaner or simple dish soap.

  • First, she wets the brush’s bristles, slowly massaging the soap into the brush head in a circular motion.
  • She warns against pressing down too hard while massaging because it can alter the brush shape and never holding the bristles face up into the water stream. “If water gets into the ferrule, it will loosen the glue inside and the [brush] hair will fall out,” she explains.
  • Rinse the soap out until you no longer see bubbles in the sink.
  • Then lay the brushes flat to dry, leaving them for at least 12 hours.
  • After they’re fully dried, store them properly.

Clark puts her bronzer brushes upright in a jar or brush canister. “I like to reuse the glasses that some of my favorite candles come in once they are finished,” she says, while Dorman recommends keeping them in a cabinet so they are covered to avoid dust buildup.

Meet the Author

Audrey Noble is an NYC-based reporter who has been specializing in beauty, culture, and entertainment topics for over eight years. She was previously the beauty reporter at Allure and has held an editorial position at Vanity Fair and Refinery29. Her work can also be seen in Vogue, Harper’s BAZAAR, Bustle, Martha Stewart Living, and more.

Meet the Experts

michelle clarka senior national artist at MAC Cosmetics, is known for her versatility and her fearless approach to makeup. She’s not afraid to express herself — or her clients — with playful, colorful looks and she can just as easily knock a soft glam vibe out of the park.

New York City-based celebrity makeup artist, Jamie Dorman, got her start learning from the very best in the business — Dame Pat McGrath — before striking out on her own. She’s created waves of gorgeous editorial looks for Vogue, Marie Claire, Elle and Glamour, and is a backstage mainstay at Fashion Week.

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