HOW TO | Homemade instant bronzer


IN the oh-so-serious world of a beauty writer, there are a few things that can ruin a girl's day. Yes, yes, there're the 'real life' things (no, not the biggies like death but the daily bits) like bills, that extra few (10) pounds, the way your mobile makes your tooth filings hurt when you talk on it, the fact that you can't actually pay rent with free beauty swag (not that you haven't tried)... that can get a girl down. One of the things that really makes me sad when my head's in beautyland? When I accidentally break a lovely product I've been trialling.

The victim this time? An Illamasqua bronzer. I actually let out an audible whimper as it smashed to the bathroom floor the other day, scooping up the fine particles as best I could and patting it back into the bisected compact. The Writhe Bronzer from their new Body Electrics range had become the latest victim in my apparent attempt to render my entire beauty cabinet a pile of pigmented dust. However, like any robust lass of sound heart and mind, I mustered the mental fortitude in the wake of my mini-morning disaster to craft a new way of trialling the product. After all, I couldn't just stop writing it up because of my butter fingers, now could I?

Instead, it became the star ingredient in a new homemade bronzing lotion. Yup, I did, and it worked BRILLIANTLY. I even added a light dusting to my Prtty Peaushun light formula (now that I've been in the garden daily for a month, my urban farmer's tan needs something a bit deeper) and loved it. For the collar bone, I mixed it with the Illamasqua Illumine Oil in Volt and that worked a treat. (PS: We sorta love their blog too. Highly recommended reading and viewing.)

So, frugal-yet-aesthetically atuned ladies of the world, here's how to make a great bronzer with the products you already have in the house:

Take any old bronzer, cracked, antiquated, petrified ... any product that has actually made it to the bottom of your makeup bag and been there for 6 months or more (be honest, you know you'll never actually use it again). Powdered products last for donkeys so don't be scared to pull out even an antique product (you know, the one that's older than your cat). Crumble it up in a bowl until it's a fine powder. Store in a jar until needed and then mix with 2 parts lotion, body oil or 3 parts face lotion for a perfect and free (disregarding sunken costs) bronzer.

If you feel as if you'll be using this stuff every day, squeeze as much lotion as you want into a mason jar, sprinkle in the bronzing powder, cap and shake furiously for an insta-jar of insta-bronzer. Add more powder to suit the depth of colour you want. Pop it in the fridge and every time you need it, pull it out and slap it on for a refreshing way to give your legs an instant tan.   

We might be part of a throwaway culture nowadays but my nan would surely shed a tear in pride at my make-do-and-mend attitude to beauty products. And like I say, every penny you don't waste on the beach-body ready malarkey is one more penny you have saved for a holiday!

(warning: legs in image may appear smaller than in real life.)