Apr 172011

Guerlain Summer 2011 includes Terra Inca ($70- Poudre Sublimatrice / Sublime Radiance Powder), a softly bronzed illuminating powder.  Every summer, Guerlain has introduced a stunning bronzing powder. As has been Guerlain’s tradition, the pan size every year is quite large.  At $70, this year’s Inca is the largest offering in recent memory at .51 ounces (14.5 g).  A quick review of their earlier offerings shows that this is almost twice as large as a few years ago, and one-third larger than last year’s.  This large size is very practical for a product that can be used for both the face and body.

The packaging is a sleek, low-profile back case with a gorgeous sunburst engraving on the outside.  I was quite happy to see that this is not made of cardboard, it has the feel of wood or a wood composite.  It’s beautifully executed, and designed as a richly-textured, sturdy accent to your makeup table.

The top is not hinged, rather it pulls off entirely to reveal a large, usable mirror underneath.  Like Guerlain’s other elaborate summer offerings, these are not made for travel.  When closed, the Terra Inca lid is held in place with three small magnets–one pair of these magnets is pictured just below.  These magnets release with slight pressure, which is wonderful for a makeup counter but not for a suitcase.  If you wish for something on-the-go, as you likely know Guerlain makes gorgeous Terracotta bronzers in compacts that are better alternatives for travel.

This bronzer is made of a intricately carved powder–really, it’s quite beautiful in its execution.

As you can see, the pan holds a powder that has a fair amount of glow and shimmer.  Here is another picture:

Here is a very close look at the beautiful workmanship on the top of the pan, which shows the pearly quality of this beautiful powder.  It’s been my experience that Guerlain is a company that has a particularly sophisticated understanding of powders, as well as bronzers.  I find myself unable to miss their annual summer bronzers, because really the best of both worlds comes together in these offerings.  As you can see, this powder catches the light beautifully, a quality which translates when worn on the skin:

My general sense is that this year’s Terra Inca is primarily designed for those with lighter skin tones.  Although deeper in tone than Guerlain Terracotta Light Sheer Bronzing Powder, it is gently tinted although buildable.  If you are looking for something in the range of Nars Casino, or are deeper in tone than MAC NC 40, this is something you would need to try at a counter before purchasing.

Here is Terra Inca on Liz, who is a Mac NC15/ Chanel Cameo-Ivoire Intensity 1.0.  She applied it lightly all over the face, then added more over the cheek area.  She topped Terra Inca with a touch of Chanel Pink Explosion blush (reviewed here).

Some of you may have seen Liz’s reaction on Facebook to Guerlain’s Terra Inca.  Generally, we both concur that Terra Inca is an excellent bronzer.  It has a beautifully natural, yet pearly texture that adds a glow and tone to the skin that looks quite beautiful (no one would mistake Liz’s bronzing technique for that used by the Jersey Shore’s Snooki, that’s certain).  In a one-to-one comparison, we should note that we preferred Dior’s Nude Glow Summer Powder in Aurora (reviewed here, $46) over Terra Inca.

We’ll post more thoughts tomorrow, although for now we found that Dior’s Aurora is smaller in size (about .35 ounces), although less expensive ($46 for Dior, and $70 for Guerlain).  We liked the pink tinge that Aurora gives for a “just out from the sun” look particularly on the face.  Although we appreciated the beauty of Guerlain’s packaging, we liked Dior’s Aurora compact better for travel.  Guerlain’s Terra Inca is more traditional bronzer color, which means adding a touch of blush on top.  None is necessary for Dior’s in our opinion.  We found that both gave an excellent glow.  We should also note that Liz wore Guerlain’s Terra Inca all day in the hot sun (over sunblock and foundation), she was complimented several times for her skin texture, glow and overall look.  I completely concur, Guerlain’s Terra Inca was absolutely beautiful on Liz.  Also, keep in mind that Guerlain’s is designed for both face and body.  Dior’s Aurora is for the face.

We both highly recommend Guerlain’s Terra Inca, but if you must choose just one, stay tuned for tomorrow’s more in-depth review of Dior’s Aurora.

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  28 Responses to “Guerlain Terra Inca Bronzer”

  1. Amy, how do you think Guerlain’s Inca compares to the new for summer CHANEL Rose bronzer (which I just purchased!)?

    • Hi Susie, I’m still waiting for the Chanel bronzers to be delivered, so I haven’t tried them yet. Enjoy yours! 🙂

  2. I have bought the Dior Aurora powder due to your review and I love it! I will definitely buy this one as well, I love Guerlain powders. Thank you for excellent reviews!

  3. Really gorgeous. I love this and Dior. Are you going to do a look woth Dior and Chanel bronzers? You help with looks and swatches. What does Liz wear on her lips? She is really gorgeous. Thank you.

    • She’s wearing Chanel Magnolia lipstick topped with Chanel Extrait de Gloss in Imaginaire. We’re doing a similar look with Dior next. We’ll have to see whether we have time to do a look with the Chanel bronzers (we’ll try but can’t 100% promise because we’re both quite busy in real life right now).

  4. I’m so excited to see your review of this! I just dropped and broke my beloved Chanel toundra bronzer that has been my staple for years. I have very fair skin and it’s so hard to find a natural bronzer. This looks lovely – I’ll be anxious to see this in store and compare to the new Chanel bronzers.

  5. Liz looks beautiful – but what is she wering on her lips?

  6. I just love, love, love Guerlain Bronzers…just wish they werent SO CRAZY expensive!!!

  7. How do you think “Inca” compares to the old Guerlain “Lady Bronzer” that Liz loves? Which do you think is more pink? I can’t wait to try the Dior – I haven’t seen it in the stores near me yet… Liz looks beautiful in everything! Could you do a feature on both of your skincare routines?

  8. I bought Terra Inca over the weekend, and my feeling is that it is best on cheeks only due to the high shimmer. When I dusted it on forehead and chin, I ended up looking greasy (and I have dry skin). Still undecided on this one.

  9. Amy, please tell Liz that she looks flipping gorgeous!!! 🙂 I LOVE the lip combo she has on, I initially thought it was the RC Shine in Romance/Chance both colors Liz would love, I bet! 🙂 Btw what is she wearing on her eyes?
    Cannot wait for the Dior Aurora to come out.
    On a totally different note, have you and Liz tried the Prestige Skin loving minerals line of baked blushes and bronzers? I bought a marble finish baked blush in Terra Rosa yesterday, I am soooo impressed with it, very soft and fine quality and not glittery/pore enhancing at all. I’m determined to try a couple more from the line– they really remind me of MAC’s *best* MSF quality– do you know what I mean?

    • Hi Lakshmi, Liz is wearing the Chanel Spring Ombre Perlees (the white, pink and purple shades)–thank you for the lovely compliments! It keeps us going, really! 🙂 I have not yet tried the Prestige Bronzers–but now that you’ve recommended them, I honestly will! I’ve heard good things about Rimmel’s too, but those are not baked. And a great big YES, I do remember that awesome collection that MAC had with the butter soft MSF’s. It was called Gold Play and I’d kill for a time machine–although with your Prestige recommendation, maybe I won’t need one?

      • Amy, unfortunately I wasn’t collecting makeup back when the Goldplay collection was released but the closest to the buttery finish I’ve seen is from Refined and Perfect Topping MSFs from the Sugar Sweet Collection 🙂
        Btw I just went online to Prestige’s website and ordered *some* stuff! 😉 Basically bronzers, blush and an eyeshadow quad all in the mineral baked formula. Will keep you posted on how they fare when I get them!
        The Ombre Perlees quad looks stunning on Liz, I especially like the way she uses the bright shade near the inner corner of the eye/lashline…

  10. Hi Amy,

    I can’t wait for your post tomorrow when you compared Inca to Dior Aurora. I am Asian with relatively fair skin ( Chanel Cameo/Beige 1.0 ) and I have been having a hard time to get the right bronzer, they all look very unnatural on me. I found Armani sheer fluid # 10 works the best for me but it is obviously not the same thing as a bronzer. The new Dior Aurora is just so pretty even just looking at it, I am so tempted to get it. Can’t wait for your blog tomorrow.


  11. I purchased this over the weekend and am wearing it today. I am very fair (a shade lighter than you, I think) and I am loving its gentle shimmery bronze glow! You have introduced me to bronzer through your blog and I don’t think I can turn back now :). Can I also add that it has a very lovely, soft fragrance…violets maybe?

    I am looking forward to your post today!

  12. I should have known better than to read this post! lol
    I need another bronzer like a hole in my head but this looks lovely and so wearable! I have been trying to decide whether to get the Chanel bronzer palette but this looks so luminous I don’t think I need the Chanel one now! I only hope Sephora has this online!

    Thanks for another temptation!

  13. I want to tell you, Amy, how much I am loving my new CHANEL eye quad in Lilium. It is different, and I was not sure I liked it at first; however, the green shade is so gorgeous that I don’t want to take it off at night. That’s how beautiful it is. I like both the darker green and the light one. This is a drop dead beautiful quad. Meanwhile, what do you think of the Guerlain Inca eye palette? Very unusual.

  14. Hi Amy,

    Two questions:

    1. How does Guerlain’s bronzer compare to Edward Bess in terms of the color and shimmer? I really like my bronzers to be almost totally brown (I have a lot of red in my cheek area, so anything with pink/pink undertones in it, I tend to avoid. Actually, Marcus Monson gave me the tip when he did my makeup last August – he told me to just wear bronzer and skip blush altogether. Genius idea.)

    2. What foundation is Liz wearing? Her skin looks absolutely flawless.

    Thanks for the lovely posts and photos, as usual!

    • Liz is wearing Chanel Lift Lumiere foundation–although this is geared toward more mature makeup wearers, for some reason Lift Lumiere works really well with Liz’s skin. In terms of the bronzers, Guerlain’s is more glowy than Edward Bess. The color tone of Edward Bess seems slightly more golden, and Guerlain’s does seem to have a touch of pink warmth. I hope this helps! 🙂

  15. I’m torn now between Guerlain Terra Inca bronzer and Dior Aurora. Liz looks so beautiful wearing the Terra Inca bronzer. Can’t wait for your post tomorrow.

  16. Wow Liz looks amazing! Everyhing about Guerlain bronzers are hard to resist- expect for the price tags! I am NW20 so I think that this might complement my skin tone very well. I will stop by the Guerlain counter and try it on to see if it’s worth the splurge 😉

  17. wow that is such a lovely bronzer, I am very tempted and can’t wait to see your comparison with the Dior. I tried out the Aurora one but it seemed to be faintly peachy orange on me and I’m a B20 in the new chanel vitalumiere. Strange because it looks so lovely in the pan.

  18. It looks PERFECT! I simply ADORE Guerlain and their bronzers. Can’t wait to buy it (I’m from Serbia, summer collection still didn’t come in out stores :(( )
    Just one question – Does it have more shimmer than Guerlain Terracotta Light and is it similar to it?
    Thank you!

  19. Where can I find the Dior Aurora bronzer? I can’t seem to find it in any stores.
    Thank you!

    • Mary–I was able to find it in France a few weeks early. It will be released in the U.S. on or before May 1st where ever Dior makeup is sold as part of the summer collection. It is limited edition. So it will be everywhere in two weeks, but once it is gone, then there will not be anymore. I understand the Sephora is putting the product up now and it should be for sale soon there.

      • Thank you so much! It looks so pretty on Liz and I would love to try it. It’s so hard to find bronzers for fair skin

  20. […] has introduced its Inca Collection, and Amy had the scoop on the exquisite Terra Inca Bronzer at Café Makeup. Even the packaging is a […]

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