They’re the product everyone’s talking about on TikTok but what are bronzing drops, how do you use them and most importantly which are the ones worth snapping up? Read on to discover everything you need to know

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Who doesn’t want a product in their bathroom cabinet that easily and instantly makes skin look tanned and more glowy? That’s where bronzing drops come in. Not to be confused with tanning drops, bronzing drops don’t contain DHA (the self-tanning agent) so won’t develop over time, instead are liquid bronzers that give instant colour and can either be applied directly to the skin or added to your favourite serum or budget moisturiser.

"With natural dewy skin and soft glam bang on trend at the moment, liquid bronzers are one of the best products to help achieve the look," says makeup artist Joy Adenuga. "The finish is more realistic on the skin compared to powders,” she adds. A sentiment fellow makeup artist, Lisa Caldognetto shares. “I love bronzing drops because they’re so much more like skin texture on the skin,” she said. “They sit on the skin like a veil and blend so easily so if you’re not confident with makeup it’s simple.”

And it seems the masses agree as bronzing drops have exploded on TikTok with particular focus and interest on Drunk Elephant D-Bronzi Drops, £31 which have caused such an explosion that they are continually sold out. There are even videos telling people when they have come back into stock and the search term #dbronzidrops is currently over 50.6 million.

@amelia0livia Replying to @Melissa-Mae Finally testing The Drunk Elephant Bronzi Drops ✨☀️ Are they worth the hype? #dbronzidrops #bronzingdrops #hypedmakeup ♬ original sound - Amelia Olivia

And bronzing drops have celebrity backing too. JLo took to Instagram to share her sculpting and contouring routine using just bronzing drops. She uses all four of her own bronzers from her JLo Beauty collection (AKA Daily Complexion Boosters , $39) for a subtly sculpted look.

However, as always happens with any huge beauty trend, when one product creates such hype as the Drunk Elephant bronzing drops have, others also come into the spotlight which is why we’ve rounded up some of the best bronzing drops to suit every budget.

10 of the best bronzing drops 

1.The viral sensation bronzing drops: Drunk Elephant D-Bronzi Drops, £31

MUA Ruby Hammer's liquid bronzer of choice for her Asian skin, this is more than just a universally flattering bronzer. These high-performing drops protect the skin barrier too, shielding it from pollution with vitamins F and D. Add them to your serum or oil for a lit-from-within, summery glow. If you’re not too precious about saving them, apply to your collar bones and arms and legs too for a subtle hint of sheen all over. As with all Drunk Elephant products, they are fragrance - paraben- and silicone-free.

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2. The dupe bronzing drops: Primark Ps…Instant Bronzing Drops, £3 

Where people haven’t been able to get their hands on the Drunk Elephant bronzing drops, these are the ones that TikTokkers are recommending next. They’re a fraction of the price and you only need a couple of drops to get a gorgeous glow. They don’t contain all the skincare benefits of Drunk Elephant but if you’re adding to your serum or moisturiser anyway then they don’t really need to.

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3. The primer bronzing drops: Saie Glowy Super Gel, £22 

Available in two shades; Sunglow is more of a bronzer tone and Starglow is more of a highlighter, these drops go onto the skin and leave it feeling silky smooth making it a great glowy primer for underneath any other makeup.

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4. The bronzing drops for all skin tones: Fenty Beauty Eaze Drop’Lit, £29 

Containing some hydrating ingredients this feels gorgeous on the skin. It comes in four shades, two bronze tones - one is more golden and the other is warmer and deeper in tone - as well as lighter pearl tones that create more of a highlighter effect.

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5. The no-mess bronzing drops:  Glossier Solar Paint, £17

Available in four shades, this vegan formula blends in seamlessly and is comfortable and lightweight to wear. The sponge-tipped wand and thicker texture (a little thicker than the brand’s  Cloud Paint  blush) takes the spills out of other bronzing drops but it's still blendable enough to be added to skincare if you want. The satin finish and lack of shimmer make it really easy to achieve a natural skin-like effect, without the muddiness that can come from a powder bronzer.

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Skincare brand  Pai made its first foray into makeup  with these bronzing drops last year, and as you’d expect from a brand famed for its skin-loving formulas, these aren’t your run of the mill glow-giving drops. As well as imparting a just-off-the-beach luminosity, they also include hydrating hero ingredients hyaluronic acid and sea kelp to nourish your skin as well as vitamin C rich lemon water for an extra hit of radiance. You can apply these directly onto the skin for a fresh-face beauty look or mix with moisturiser for a subtle full face glow.

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6. The no-makeup liquid bronzer:  Versed Moodlighting Glow Drops, £14.99

If you’re after a no-makeup look, these drops are your go-to. They feel like a serum (similar consistency to  Glossier’s Skin Tint ) and are infused with peptides. They give a soft-focus glow wherever you apply them and come in two shades one slightly darker than the other. They do have more of a shimmer than other bronzing drops in this edit, but it’s still subtle. Apply two or three drops onto dry skin and you’re good to go. All of Versed’s products are vegan and cruelty-free and it always uses unretouched skin in campaign imagery.

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7. The celeb-approved one: Iconic London Sheer Bronze, £12.60

Iconic London is best known for its luminosity giving highlighters, but the brand’s Sheer Bronze liquid bronzer that's available in six shades is worth a try too. Makeup artist Hannah Martin loves it “It’s nice and lightweight and deliciously sheer,” she says “It’s like someone read my mind when they created it. I’m obsessed.” It’s available in six shades and is blendable; depending on how much you dab on, it can give a soft wash of bronze or a deep bronze normally only achieved with two weeks on holiday. 

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8. The Scandi bronzing drops:  Lumene Invisible Illumination [Kaunis] Liquid Bronzer, £24.90

We first came across Nordic brand Lumene when we tried (and fell in love with) the  Liquid Blush , £22.50, and we’re happy to report the liquid bronzer is just as lovely. It’s infused with pure Arctic spring water for hydration and pearlescent pigments for an illuminating bronzer that gives a radiant complexion. Tap it on the points of your face the sun normally hits for a natural look. Or use it over a more pigmented bronzer to amp up your glow.

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9. The natural and vegan liquid bronzer   Dr. Hauschka Translucent Bronzing Tint, £17.50

MUAs, including Nikki Wolff, have long been fans of the original Dr Hauschka bronzing tint and now there is a new version that is still 100 per cent natural but it’s also now certified vegan too.  Like the others you can add a few drops of this to your moisturiser to add warmth to your skin without creating too much depth. If you use a very rich moisturiser, try applying  after your moisturiser so the colour doesn’t get lost.

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10. The lightly tanning bronzing drops: Whind Ourika Sun Instant Glow Tinting Water , £32

Moroccan-inspired skincare brand Whind only uses ingredients from ‘sun-kissed climates’ and all of their products are designed to boost your skin health and help all skin tones get their glow on. These bronzing drops use erythrulose, a natural alternative to DHA to (very) gradually build up a natural-looking tan over time. It's not as strong as DHA and leaves skin with an instant bronze hue too. The use of the word 'water' might lead you to think that this is a mist, but these dark brown drops can be applied directly to skin or mixed in with your serum or moisturiser. 

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