Summer is coming to an end, and if you've been suffering with the heat as much as I have, it might actually be good news. One thing I will miss, however, is my warm, sunkissed complexion that will inevitably become increasingly lifeless and gray as the days get shorter. To extend that "yes, I was definitely just vacationing in the Amalfi Coast" summer glow, I'm turning to bronzer — specifically Merit's new Bronze Balm.
Merit is an under-the-radar makeup brand with a small, curated selection of products including a foundation-concealer hybrid, a lipstick worn by Bella Hadid, and a frequently sold-out blush worn by Carrie Bradshaw. Although it was just released today, I'm betting this Bronze Balm will make its way into the kits and vanities of makeup artists, TikTok users, and editors alike.
The operative words with Bronze Balm — and all Merit products TBH — are simplicity and ease. Even as someone who has a tumultuous relationship with the product category, I truly found this one to be pretty foolproof, thanks to factors like its buildable balm-like texture, shimmer-free formula, and wide variety of hues which go from almost sheer to deeply opaque.
Shop now: $30; meritbeauty.com
The consistency and feel of the Bronze Balm is similar to Merit's Day Glow. The brand recommends two methods of use for Bronze Balm, but I found a third during my own testing. The first technique is to apply it to the high points of your face, which add warmth to your complexion. The second technique is basically by contouring, thinly applying it to the areas of your face that could use definition. The third technique, which I discovered, will only work if the bronzer comes in a shade that is an exact match to your skin tone. I take Quince, my regular shade for The Minimalist foundation stick, and spread it across my face using my fingers to gently tap and blend it in. The result is a lit-from-within effect similar to using a tinted serum.
The last thing I want to highlight is the Bronze Balm shade wheel. Trying to choose a shade of bronzer is difficult, but the wheel helps you find the correct one, according to your shade of The Minimalist foundation.
It's a hydrating easy-to-use formula, and I wouldn't be surprised to see make a cameo on the upcoming season of And Just Like That… as one of Carrie's go-to beauty products. Head to Merit to find your own $30 shade of Bronze Balm.