REVIEW: SOLEIL TAN DE Chanel Bronzing Makeup Base UPDATE 2

CHANEL Bronzing Makeup Base

I didn’t mean to buy this bronzer. We were shopping with very little time to spare before the centre closed, so we split up and I sent Mark to the Chanel counter to buy – and I quote:

Chanel bronzing powder. You can’t miss it, it’s a giant compact with a cream top. Ask for shade 25, or 10 if they don’t have it. It comes with its own brush and costs about £40.00*

It was, of course, Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Powder. I was given a very cute, postage stamp sized compact sample – from a friend, not a counter  (as if a counter would give those out), and I loved it, even though I broke the tiny lid with my giant sausage fingers opening it the first time.

Mark came back with Soleil Tan de Chanel Bronzing Makeup Base.


A light, cream-gel hybrid bronzer.


Soleil Tan de Chanel leaves skin with a velvety finish and a beautiful sun-kissed look. The mineral waxes and powders ensure effortless application with a mattifying effect.


Wear it alone to enhance the complexion, or over foundation for a hint of outdoor radiance.

1) For a natural ‘sun-kissed’ look: use a  Kabuki brush to buff the bronzer all over your skin, targeting the forehead, temples, nose and chin in particular.

2) For a more sculpted, contoured look, apply the bronzer just beneath your cheekbones, starting from your ears and ending in the middle of your cheek using a back and forth motion.

3) To extend the glow beyond your complexion: mix the bronzer with a small amount of your favourite moisturiser and apply to your shoulders, arms and décolleté.


To die for! Totally impractical of course to lug about on the go, but it’s beautiful to look at.


What I should have done, is kept it aside in perfect, unopened condition to return the next day. What I actually did, was open it up in the car on the way home, stick a greasy digit into it and swatch it there and then.

Orange, an intense, unflattering tangerine/brown toned orange.

I was gutted. Do you remember that feeling of self-inflicted disappointment in childhood when you broke a new toy on Christmas day, seconds after you unwrapped it? I’m thinking of Tiny Tears’ arm which never properly fitted back into her socket after I pulled it out, or the short haircut I gave my doll with the everlasting hair which never ‘grew’ again. That’s how I felt and I only had myself to blame and Mark for getting the wrong product.

I only went back to it when I couldn’t find my trusty Guerlain compact.

This bronzing makeup base is housed in a shallow, plastic frosted pot with a black lid, typical Chanel – glamorous and luxurious. It’s not particularly heavy, but it is a bit bulky. Shrink it to half its size and you’d be makeup heaven.

This time, I applied it with a huge foundation brush using the lightest of touches.

It took me a long time to build up the colour (though it blends beautifully, almost melting into skin) because I was treading carefully, but I do agree with one of the reviews below and think it’s not suitable for all skin shades. My skin tone is cool and I know if I went in too heavy-handed I would look very clowny and orange. This looks fresh, natural and healthy.

There is the tiniest whiff of ‘fake tan’ if you get your nose right into the pot. I can’t detect it once applied though.


I think it has too much of the yellow pigment and for that reason alone it’s not the most flattering of my bronzers I regret to say. Would have preferred a more clear tan colour. Not unworkable by any means, there are just others I like better on me. Not sure it would look good on cooler or darker skin tones either.

I’m very pale and I was very scared of trying this bronzer. But since I couldn’t find a more affordable cream bronzer and have very dry skin I gave this a go. And I’m so glad I did! I mix this with a drop of MAC strobe cream and it gives me the most natural bronze/glow.If I could only chose one makeup product, this would be it!

It is a bit expensive, at first. I bought mine 9 months ago, use it everyday, and not even halfway thru it. It’s a great value!

This is a cream, applies beautifully, seamlessly…never patchy, streaky…blends quickly. It is flawless upon application and hours later.

I use this a bronzer and eyeshadow (I’m not a big eyeshadow wearer). I pop a very small amount of blush on my cheek bones and my skin just glows! I often wear this alone, without foundation.


This has to be the best value Chanel makeup they’ve ever produced. I honestly think this is a one time purchase. I’ve had this for 6 weeks and have barely made an indent in the swirly pattern.


It’s not just for your face (or as eyeshadow).

No time to bronze legs? Grab a Kabuki brush – one with densely packed bristles instead of soft ones works best, and get blending.

If you already have fake tan on, use a smaller sized brush to contour; a darker shade blended in each side of your legs slims them right down. It also works over patchy fake tan (we’ve all been there) and evens it out nicely, giving a more polished finish.

A smattering of colour on the décolletage and along arms also looks very flattering.

I haven’t found it transfers colour, if you wear it with sandals there’s no tell-tale ‘tide mark’ line when you kick them off.

I’m not an excessive user of fake tan. You’d never think I was wearing any most of the time, but I’m sickly pale without it. I avoid the sun as much as possible if I’m not coated in SPF 50. Although we all need 15 minutes of sunlight (not between 12-3pm if possible) on a naked face to suck up much-needed vitamin D.


Don’t lose the inner plastic lid that seals the bronzer, you don’t want it to dry out.

There’s no SPF in this bronzer – if you’re using it as a base you’re still going to have sunscreen and moisturiser on underneath and you don’t want a build-up of film ie dirt and bacteria, on the surface, so always use a clean brush. I use three in rotation, (Kabuki brushes take forever to dry) so I always have a clean and dry one available.

But, if it does start to look murky on the surface, scrape off all the funky bits with a teaspoon.


Test it in store before purchasing it, it’s not going to suit everyone!

Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel Bronzing Makeup Base 30g £42.00 (went up by £2.00 since March, the nerve!)

UPDATE 16th APRIL 2020

You know that thing I said:

This has to be the best value Chanel makeup they've ever produced. I honestly think this is a one time purchase. I've had this for 6 weeks and have barely made an indent in the swirly pattern.

Well, the jar is sneakily deceptive and the product actually ‘hit pan’ a mere 6 months later. There’s plenty left in the old jar but I was worried there would be a run on it because IT’S FABULOUS and I bought another one.

I use it every day, yes even now when there’s no one to see me, because a light layer of colour evens out my skin tone, making me feel better and less ghostlike. I still apply it with a light hand though, it’s all too easy to go too far and look like you need a good wash.

I just love it. No, it doesn’t last forever and is probably terrible value if I did the math (30g is really not much) and Chanel will probably continue to hike up the price because of suckers like me, but I need it, I’m hooked.


Weirdness! Chanel have changed the name of this product to HEALTHY GLOW BRONZING CREAM – Perhaps they thought ‘makeup base’ wasn’t sexy enough?

I bought my second one before the change, but I’m sure I’ll be buying another one, so I hope they haven’t messed with the formula. 

It’s currently (23/05/20) on offer at John Lewis * for £37.80 (10% off)

*Affiliate link

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