You’re Probably Using Drunk Elephant’s D-Bronzi Drops Wrong

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If I had to describe my favourite feeling in the world, it would be that fuzzy, end-of-day beach holiday bliss. You’ve spent the day at the beach (slathered in SPF, wearing a hat, and under an umbrella for shade, obviously), drinking fruity cocktails and reading a smutty romance book, and as the sun starts to set, you peel yourself off the sunlounger and head for your hotel room.
After a quick shower, you slick your hair in a bun, spritz a light, fresh fragrance over your décolletage, brush up your brows, and dab on a flirty blush. You’re glowing from head to toe, and as you head down to dinner, you decide to leisurely stop for a drink in a beach bar along the way. Hey, you’ve got nowhere to be. 
If I had to name one product that recreates this feeling, even in the dead of winter, it’s the Drunk Elephant D-Bronzi Anti-Pollution Sunshine Drops, $60. And it seems that TikTok agrees, with a recent viral video by Alix Earle resulting in the product being sold out everywhere globally.
Originally formulated as an antioxidant, anti-pollution serum, D-Bronzi is a makeup and skincare hybrid that was born from Drunk Elephant founder Tiffany Masterson’s desire to create a bronzing product that followed the same philosophies as her skincare brand.
“First and foremost, [we wanted to add] healthy nourishing ingredients for your skin,” Masterson tells Refinery29 Australia when visiting Australia to celebrate the long-awaited local launch of the Protini Polypeptide range. She references the inclusion of omega-rich virgin marula and blackcurrant seed oils to support skin barrier function, as well as antioxidants to protect against environmental aggressors. 
Like every other product in the Drunk Elephant range, D-Bronzi is free from fragrance, which Masterson felt was radical in and of itself, since so many bronzing liquids smell like chocolate or coconut. “[Creating] D-Bronzi was the first time I stepped out [of the skincare category],” she says. “It was a serum first, a skincare product first, and at the very end, we decided to add some bronze stuff in there to make it look like we had been in the sun.”
In my opinion, the real beauty of this product is its ability to subtly inject some life into your skin. And Masterson agrees, explaining that it’s not designed to be a contouring product — just as the brand’s Rosi Drops, $60, isn’t designed to be a blush. “They're a [colour] wash,” she says, adding that both products were designed to offer just enough colour to wake up the face and get people asking you, “Where have you been? Have you just been jogging?”
D-Bronzi isn’t a new product, having launched in 2018. But this glow-giving serum has had a resurgence lately, thanks to Earle's GRWM TikTok video. Just scroll TikTok for a minute and you’re likely to see a makeup tutorial that features the product. While the drops are undeniably beautiful, it was Earle mixing the product in with her moisturiser that really made this product go viral. That's to say, if you’ve tried D-Bronzi before and didn’t like it, chances are you were using the product wrong (by applying it directly onto the face, resulting in a muddy look and uneven distribution).
“Thank you to Alix Earle, they get it now,” laughs Masterson, who makes it clear that Earle was not paid to promote the product. “Education is really hard with products, but Alix Earle instinctively used it the right way.” 
D-Bronzi has a fluid texture and though it is highly pigmented, the product does substantially sheer out when mixed with a moisturiser. That said, you can add a little or a lot of product into the mix, depending on how bronzed you want to be. Earle mixes D-Bronzi with the Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream, $90, but I prefer mixing it with a lighter gel moisturiser like the budget-friendly QV Face Ultra Calming Moisturiser, $15.99 for a wetter look or the Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Cream, $113, if my skin needs a richer cream that day.
Combining skincare products together prior to application is a hallmark of the Drunk Elephant brand, where creating little skincare “smoothies” are encouraged. The brand bucks the rules, which dictate that layering products carefully from thinnest to thickest is the only way to ensure efficacy. Instead, Masterson explains that every product in the range (aside from the SPF, which isn’t currently available in Australia) was formulated specifically to be mixed together, without diminishing how efficacious each product is. The upside of this, aside from it being easier to apply, is that you will need less serum to cover your entire face, thus making the product last longer. 
“Instead of using three to four drops of a vitamin C serum, plus three to four drops of hydration serum, three to four pumps of moisturiser, [you’ll only need one drop],” Masterson explains. “Take one drop of each product in your hand and put it on your face and go; I don't have time to be layering. I don't do it. I cannot wait for anything to dry. I just don't.”
Here’s to endless holiday skin, even as Australia dives into the chilly winter months. 
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