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TheBalm Oliver Bronzer Swatches and Review

19/08/2018

One of the most exciting makeup releases for me this year is theBalm Cosmetics Take Home The Bronze Collection. The Take Home The Bronze Collection consists of three “anti-orange” bronzers, Oliver (formally known as Oskar), Thomas (formally known as Toni) and Greg (formally known as Graham E). I knew as soon as I saw the first promotional pictures that I needed Oliver. The Oliver bronzer shade is the lightest and coolest of the three shades and is one of the few bronzers on the market that can actually be used on fair skin. The whole Take Home The Bronze collection is packaged in a similar way to all of the other theBalm cheek products, in a cardboard compact with a large mirror for easy application on the run. TheBalm is a cruelty free American brand that is available at David Jones, Target and on the BeautyNext website in Australia. Beauty Next have told me that all 5 bronzers from theBalm that I have swatched for you today are vegan. I have swatches comparing all of theBalm’s bronzers and swatches of the Oliver bronzer next to high end bronzers that I was considering purchasing before the release of this collection.

Thebalm Oliver Bronzer
TheBalm Oliver Bronzer

Bronzing is one of the hardest things to perfect on my skin because I am very pale and pink toned, so many bronzers on the market look straight out orange on me. Even many contour shades are far too orange for me to use as a bronzer. A good bronzer for fair, pink skin, is very hard to find, as brands just generally don’t make any products for very fair skin (hence my foundation and concealer struggles). And when they do, they they’re almost always catered to warm toned skin, so the products never work for me. TheBalm’s Oliver bronzer is one of the very few bronzers on the market that can be used on very fair pink skin. It is also the right colour to match warm skin tones and those with light skin – as well as the very pale. The best application method is to get a very big fluffy brush and very lightly tap into the pan, as well as tap off the excess, before lightly applying to the skin. Oliver can be built up easily, so for fair skin it is best to use a light hand when applying it – I still need to practice this. The powder does have a bit of kick up in the pan, but that’s just what happens with soft powders, so it’s nothing to worry about.

TheBalm Oliver Bronzer swatch
TheBalm Oliver Bronzer swatch

The Oliver bronzer is much lighter and cooler than any other bronzer that theBalm has released. I went in store to compare all of theBalm’s bronzers so that you could see just how different the shade depths and undertones are. Thomas from the recent Take Home The Bronze release is the most orange of all the bronzers in their line up, and Balm Desert, a blush/bronzer hybrid, is by far the most red. I own Balm Desert as I was hoping I would be able to use it as a blush, like Balm Springs and Balm Beach, but it just doesn’t work for fair skin. Greg from the Take Home The Bronze collection, and Bahama Mama, the original bronzer from theBalm, are the most similar. Bahama Mama has a touch more green than Greg, but they’re so similar that it wouldn’t surprise me if Bahama Mama were to be discontinued in future.

TheBalm bronzer comparison - Oliver, Thomas, Greg, Bahama Mama and Balm Desert
TheBalm bronzer comparison – Oliver, Thomas, Greg, Bahama Mama and Balm Desert

I know a lot of people will want to see theBalm’s Oliver bronzer compared to other popular bronzers that suit fair skin, so I went out of my way to go to a second shopping centre to do that for you – the photo was taken in the shopping centre but it’s the best I could do, hopefully it’s helpful. I compared Oliver to the Hourglass Ambient Light Bronzers in Nude Light and Diffused Light as well as the BareMinerals Invisible Bronze Powder Bronzer in Fair to Light which are all available at Mecca in Australia. I also went to Sephora Aus so that I could include the Marc Jacobs Omega Bronzer in Tan-tastic. I wanted to include Becca’s Sunlit Bronzer in Bali Sands but Sephora Australia are terrible at restocking things – looking at swatch comparisons of it online though, it would be much warmer than theBalm’s Oliver. The picture doesn’t show the finishes of the bronzers well but I can tell you that the Hourglass Diffused Bronzer and Bare Minerals Fair to Light Bronzer both had evident micro sparkles to them in sunlight. The other shades were matte except for theBalm’s Oliver which has the slightest sheen in sunlight, but without any sparkle. The Hourglass Diffused Bronzer was the coolest of the bunch, and Bare Minerals was the warmest (but only just). Bare Minerals was the most sheer of all the shades but all the other colours had the same sort of pigmentation. Before theBalm’s Take Home The Bronze Collection was announced, I was very close to buying the Hourglass Nude Bronze Light Bronzer. I’m really happy that I waited as the colours are so similar that the end result looks the same, and theBalm’s bronzer only cost A$22.95 compared to A$73 for the Hourglass bronzers.

Bronzer swatch comparison on fair skin - thebalm Oliver, Hourglass Nude Bronze Light and Diffused Bronze Light, Bare Minerals Invisible Bronze in Fair to Light and Marc Jacobs Tan-tastic
Bronzer swatch comparison on fair skin – theBalm Oliver, Hourglass Nude Bronze Light and Diffused Bronze Light, Bare Minerals Invisible Bronze in Fair to Light and Marc Jacobs Tan-tastic

I’m happy that I now have a cruelty free bronzer that can be used on my fair skin, and the price is a bonus. I do need to practice using it more as I can easily build up the pigmentation too much so that it looks weird. The pigmentation level is the only downside, but it makes it useful for a wider range of skin tones, so I understand why it’s so pigmented. TheBalm have some other new releases that I would love to try as well, the Plump Your Pucker Lip Gloss and Furrowcious Brow Pencil. If I get my hands on them I can give you an honest opinion on those as well. You can check out my previous reviews of products from theBalm Cosmetics – TheBalm The Mainzer Sisters Luminizer Palette Review and TheBalm Meet Matt(e) Hughes Review. TheBalm is one of my favourite brands so I do own quite a few of their products that I can review. I plan on doing a review on all of their blushes and a comparison of their three Meet Matt(e) eyeshadow palettes. If you want to get my new blog posts sent to your inbox, then sign up to email updates. You can also find me on social media – Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

I hope my review and swatch comparisons are helpful for you – it can be really hard to find products swatched against other brands sometimes. Have you tried the new bronzers from theBalm’s Take Home The Bronze Collection, or plan on trying them in future?

Love, Alinta

5 Comments

  • Cynthia 22/08/2018 at 11:24 am

    I have always heard great things about this brand but have yet to try any of their products. These bronzers look great!

  • Polish Those Nails 22/08/2018 at 12:55 pm

    I have yet to try this brand either, but their products always sound lovely! That’s great they’re cruelty free!

  • Tracey 22/08/2018 at 4:03 pm

    Not tried this brand and too find it hard to get Bronzer for paler skin. Oliver looks fab!

  • My Nail Polish Obsession 23/08/2018 at 9:16 am

    I haven’t tried The Balm but it’s a nice bronzer!

  • Ehmkay Nails 23/08/2018 at 10:20 am

    I’ve heard great things about the balm! I always want their matte palettes.

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    I’m Alinta, an animal lover who writes reviews about cruelty free products as a distraction from my chronic illnesses. Read more…

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*press sample  #lovealinta #sustainablebeauty #sustainablebrand #ecobeauty #ethicalbeauty #ecotools

    What is a sustainable product? I have spent months thinking about this and what I want to write and on my blog and post about here. There is no easy answer to this. Just when considering greenhouse emissions for a company alone, it’s immensely complicated. There was a good article in nature recently going over how Microsoft are trying to achieve net zero, but most companies don’t have the means that Microsoft does. Most companies rely on carbon offsets, which is often planting trees (problematic solution in itself), rather than ensuring their business has no emissions at all. And they don’t take into consideration all the emissions that occur from suppliers and freight of suppliers etc. Then there is the problem of waste. Ideally, I don’t want there to be any permanent waste to occur from any product I buy, but that’s certainly not the case. Most beauty products can’t even be recycled in curb-side recycling bins. I would preferably want my products to be biodegradable, refillable at home, or reused and refilled by the company so that there is no waste. However, I don’t know of an actual solution that encompasses those criteria for some things – like vegan makeup brush hairs as seen with eco tools brushes. I do prioritise this lower than single use plastic, as I get many years of use from makeup brushes. But it’s just another level of complexity that I’ve tried to figure out. So in saying all that, I don’t have the solution or a perfect company or product to talk about as I don’t know of one. I do however intend to support and share about the companies who are trying to be more sustainable. I hope that in supporting them, we will get to a point where companies can fit my ideal criteria. I would like to write a blog post on this but that requires more energy than I have right now – I would however love to hear your thoughts on sustainable products. What is a sustainable product to you? Eco tools was actually the first big company I ever noticed that was promoting eco beauty. It’s interesting how much has changed since then.
    *press sample #lovealinta #sustainablebeauty #sustainablebrand #ecobeauty #ethicalbeauty #ecotools

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Picture from a Bloomberg article of a graph showing world average temp over 2000 years with obvious uptick since 1850. Title saying heat spike. 
#climatechange #climateaction #ipcc #ipccreport #lovealinta

    Since the IPCC report was released on Monday I’ve seen a lot of people expressing how overwhelmed and helpless they feel about climate change. These feelings are absolutely valid. The situation we’re in is dire. The report confirmed that we are currently experiencing the effects of climate change which can be seen in the increase in extreme weather events. We’re currently sitting at 1.1 degrees and we will well overshoot 1.5 degrees by the end of the century if nothing changes. This will cause widespread suffering, death and destruction for humans, animals and ecosystems.
    But there is good news. We know what the problem is and we know the solution. We can avoid the worst case scenario if we act now. De-carbonising the economy needs to be our top priority, we simply cannot rely on fossil fuels any longer. The most important thing you can do is to get involved and apply political pressure. That means voting for the people with the best climate policies, emailing your local representative, going to climate protests, physically blocking new fossil fuel infrastructure, telling everyone you know to also act – whatever it is you can do to make change, do it.
    Australia was recently ranked last on climate action against 193 other UN member nations. This cannot continue. COP 26 is around the corner so speak up, tell the Aus gov that you want climate action now. I know many of you don’t have a degree about climate change like I do, so I’ve tried to make this simple and give you examples of what to do, and I’m happy to go into more detail or explain anything you don’t understand, just ask. Do your best to be informed and be prepared to fight for a better future. It will be worth it for every life, species and ecosystem that can be saved.
    Picture from a Bloomberg article of a graph showing world average temp over 2000 years with obvious uptick since 1850. Title saying heat spike.
    #climatechange #climateaction #ipcc #ipccreport #lovealinta

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Thanks to everyone who checked in on me. I’m hoping my recent iron infusion will help me to feel less like one foot is in the grave but only time will tell. 
Leave a comment to let me know what silly things your pets or kids have been up to lately so we can all have a laugh 😊
Picture of a white and grey dog looking at the camera and licking his nose. 
#rescuedog #rescuedogs #dogsofmelbourne #lovealinta

    With Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane all In lockdown, I thought a cute pup picture in your feed might be appreciated. You can swipe to see a cute video of a scruffy puppy Kobi not long after he came into care as a foster dog – he found himself in the pound at 3 months of age.
    Kobi was probably thinking about food in this photo because he is a bit obsessed with eating. He will even happily eat dirt – I’ve had to clean dirt off his chin far too often lately (don’t worry the vet says there’s nothing wrong with him, he’s just gluttonous). His favourite method for dirt eating is face planting straight onto the ground. It’s certainly an interesting technique.
    Thanks to everyone who checked in on me. I’m hoping my recent iron infusion will help me to feel less like one foot is in the grave but only time will tell.
    Leave a comment to let me know what silly things your pets or kids have been up to lately so we can all have a laugh 😊
    Picture of a white and grey dog looking at the camera and licking his nose.
    #rescuedog #rescuedogs #dogsofmelbourne #lovealinta

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Pic description: selfie of me in a mask with neon yellow sticker that says I have had the covid-19 vaccine, taken just after my second vaccination.

    It’s been 6.5 weeks since my first Pfizer vaccination and 3.5 since my second, but I still feel like death warmed up. This isn’t surprising. My immunologist, GP and I all knew I would suffer, but that doesn’t make it easier to deal with. This isn’t a covid vaccine specific reaction, I react to all vaccines in the same way. I was out of action for 2 weeks after my meningococcal vaccine last December and most people don’t have any problems with that vax. My vaccine reactions are specific to only me, because of my unique immune deficiencies. My immunologist has never come across anyone else with the combination of immune deficiencies that I have. Unfortunately, one of my worse deficiencies is that of Memory B Cells, which means I don’t make immunity to many vaccines, and when I do, it doesn’t last for long. I still get vaccinated despite this, because it matters. So the point of this post – please get your covid vaccination when you are eligible to. Many vulnerable people like myself are relying on herd immunity and we’re just not going to get there if everyone doesn’t do their part. I didn’t get a pretty sticker but the potential of covid antibodies is better than any sticker.
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For a long time I’ve wanted to post about this sort of thing but I haven’t known where to start. I have no idea where the level of environmental and climate knowledge is at with the general public so I would love if you could let me know how much you know about it. Then at least I have a place to start. 
Also, thanks for sticking by me, it has been very hard to get through this subject whilst going through all my health stuff plus vaccines. I have my second vax on Thursday and a few more weeks of uni and then I’ll be around more often. 
Oh and don’t forget to show up to the climate strike on Friday 😊
Pic description - white lined notebook on black background with handwriting that says First Nations People’s and Earth Based Governance. 
#climatechange #alwayswasalwayswillbe #lovealinta

    I think I’ve made it pretty obvious that I care about Indigenous rights as well as the environment. So I am particularly interested in how Indigenous people want to combat climate change because climate change action desperately needs to be decolonised.
    Unfortunately, those who are the least responsible for climate change are the ones who ones who will suffer the most, and many Indigenous people will be more vulnerable to the impacts of climate change because of colonisation. Indigenous people and their knowledge are frequently left out of climate discussions and that needs to change. My climate change uni subject focuses on exactly that this week.
    For a long time I’ve wanted to post about this sort of thing but I haven’t known where to start. I have no idea where the level of environmental and climate knowledge is at with the general public so I would love if you could let me know how much you know about it. Then at least I have a place to start.
    Also, thanks for sticking by me, it has been very hard to get through this subject whilst going through all my health stuff plus vaccines. I have my second vax on Thursday and a few more weeks of uni and then I’ll be around more often.
    Oh and don’t forget to show up to the climate strike on Friday 😊
    Pic description – white lined notebook on black background with handwriting that says First Nations People’s and Earth Based Governance.
    #climatechange #alwayswasalwayswillbe #lovealinta

    Love, Alinta
    5 months ago
    View on Instagram |
    5/9
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Picture description: fair hand flat out with fingers spread showing silver coloured ring on ring finger with a green background. 
#ethicalengagementring #ethicalengagement #labdiamond #recycledplatinum #lovealinta

    Here are the ring details as promised. I think you all knew that my ring was going to be ethical in some way. It wouldn’t be me otherwise, would it? I’ve followed @ethicaljewelleryaustralia for years now, so I’ve known for a long time that I would want them to make a ring for me. It’s something that I will be wearing everyday, so I want it to represent my values. So the ring is handmade by #EthicalJewelleryAustralia in the design I wanted. It’s a round diamond with a four prongs that look like little petals. It’s made with recycled platinum and a lab diamond. Diamond and metal mining have a lot of negative social and environmental impacts, plus a lab diamond is far more affordable than a traditionally mined diamond, which means you can reduce your impact on people, the planet and your hip pocket. I hope lab grown diamonds are the choice of the future, as it is far better for human rights and the environment to make a diamond in a lab using renewable energy, than it is to mine them from the ground, using fossil fuels and unethical labor – just look into blood diamonds if you want to know how bad it can get. I also plan on trying to have a more ethical wedding too. I’ve already found a carbon neutral venue, but I’ve got lots of research to do on everything else. Let me know if you have any ideas for a sustainable wedding.
    Picture description: fair hand flat out with fingers spread showing silver coloured ring on ring finger with a green background.
    #ethicalengagementring #ethicalengagement #labdiamond #recycledplatinum #lovealinta

    Love, Alinta
    6 months ago
    View on Instagram |
    6/9
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    With it being #EarthDay, I thought I would share some on my sustainable cleaning products. Everyone has to clean, but supermarket cleaning products don’t tend to be very eco-friendly. Here I’ve got my @ecomaxbrushes Bottle brush which is made from coconut waste products and can be composted at the end of its life – it will just leave the wire which can be recycled. There’s my Safix biodegradable scrub pad made from organic coconut fibers which can be composted when you are finished with it. And @retrokitchenaustralia biodegradable dish cloth in a cute dog print. It’s made from cotton and cellulose and can be composted when worn out. I use them with the @koalaeco Natural Multipurpose Kitchen Cleaner which is cruelty free, vegan and palm oil free and comes in 100% post consumer recycled bottles that can be recyclable when finished. I get the big refill bottles and just fill up my spray bottle. I bought all the above from @floraandfaunaau and they’re actually having 15% off eco items today, so all of these are discounted. Don’t forget to use my #floraandfaunaau affiliate code on my blog if you ever make a purchase, it helps me out. There’s lots of other ways to make regular household chores better for the environment. It can feel overwhelming to charge, but just start with small steps. When one product runs out you can replace it with a more sustainable option. One of the last things I need to change is is my laundry detergent so I’m thinking I’ll try @thedirtcompany one. I would love to hear what you think of their products if you’ve tried them. Also let know what eco swaps you’ve made in your home so that I can get more ideas. #EcoSwaps #LoveAlinta

    Love, Alinta
    6 months ago
    View on Instagram |
    7/9
    I have some news. I’m engaged! As a kid/teen I never thought this would happen as I didn’t believe in love - then I got sick and worried that no one would see past my illnesses. But I have found someone who loves me for me, faults, illnesses and all and I can’t wait to marry him. 
We spent yesterday afternoon attempting to take our own engagement photos in the yard with a tripod and this is the result. Having a photographer would be so much easier but my immune system wouldn’t appreciate that. 
Oh and I’ll tell you all about my ring in another post as I designed it ☺️#engagedtomybestfriend #lovealinta

Photo 1 description: close up of the torsos of two people in dark colours standing side by side with arms stretched to the ground and holding hands. One hand over both arms showing silver coloured ring. 
Photo 2 description: man hugging female from behind with his arm around her chest. Her hands are on his arm showing ring. Both smiling at camera with greenery in background.
    I have some news. I’m engaged! As a kid/teen I never thought this would happen as I didn’t believe in love - then I got sick and worried that no one would see past my illnesses. But I have found someone who loves me for me, faults, illnesses and all and I can’t wait to marry him. 
We spent yesterday afternoon attempting to take our own engagement photos in the yard with a tripod and this is the result. Having a photographer would be so much easier but my immune system wouldn’t appreciate that. 
Oh and I’ll tell you all about my ring in another post as I designed it ☺️#engagedtomybestfriend #lovealinta

Photo 1 description: close up of the torsos of two people in dark colours standing side by side with arms stretched to the ground and holding hands. One hand over both arms showing silver coloured ring. 
Photo 2 description: man hugging female from behind with his arm around her chest. Her hands are on his arm showing ring. Both smiling at camera with greenery in background.

    I have some news. I’m engaged! As a kid/teen I never thought this would happen as I didn’t believe in love – then I got sick and worried that no one would see past my illnesses. But I have found someone who loves me for me, faults, illnesses and all and I can’t wait to marry him.
    We spent yesterday afternoon attempting to take our own engagement photos in the yard with a tripod and this is the result. Having a photographer would be so much easier but my immune system wouldn’t appreciate that.
    Oh and I’ll tell you all about my ring in another post as I designed it ☺️#engagedtomybestfriend #lovealinta

    Photo 1 description: close up of the torsos of two people in dark colours standing side by side with arms stretched to the ground and holding hands. One hand over both arms showing silver coloured ring.
    Photo 2 description: man hugging female from behind with his arm around her chest. Her hands are on his arm showing ring. Both smiling at camera with greenery in background.

    Love, Alinta
    6 months ago
    View on Instagram |
    8/9
    It’s been a while since I posted makeup, so here’s some makeup 🙃 the @meccamax Off Duty BB Cream made it into my 2020 faves blog post, and it’s still my favourite base to use on the rare occasion that I put makeup on. I’ve just been too tired to wear makeup the last couple of months. The #meccamax Off Duty BB Cream is cruelty free and vegan. It however only comes in 5 shades. I use the lightest shade Vanilla, which has a good undertone for me, but I have to mix it with the same amount of white concealer to make it light enough to use. @MeccaMaxima have said they will extend the shade range of their home brands for years now, but they still don’t sell a single base shade that I could use by itself, and I’m sure that’s the same for dark skin tones. The other criticism I have of this product is the packaging. The lack of pump makes it hard to control the amount that comes out, and I would really prefer if it were in glass as that would be easier to recycle. The actual cream itself is amazing though. The formula works so well on my skin. It’s easy to blend with a brush and doesn’t cake up or feel heavy. Have you tried this BB cream? Do you have another favourite cruelty free and vegan BB cream? #meccabeauty #crueltyfreebeauty #veganbeauty #lovealinta

    It’s been a while since I posted makeup, so here’s some makeup 🙃 the @meccamax Off Duty BB Cream made it into my 2020 faves blog post, and it’s still my favourite base to use on the rare occasion that I put makeup on. I’ve just been too tired to wear makeup the last couple of months. The #meccamax Off Duty BB Cream is cruelty free and vegan. It however only comes in 5 shades. I use the lightest shade Vanilla, which has a good undertone for me, but I have to mix it with the same amount of white concealer to make it light enough to use. @MeccaMaxima have said they will extend the shade range of their home brands for years now, but they still don’t sell a single base shade that I could use by itself, and I’m sure that’s the same for dark skin tones. The other criticism I have of this product is the packaging. The lack of pump makes it hard to control the amount that comes out, and I would really prefer if it were in glass as that would be easier to recycle. The actual cream itself is amazing though. The formula works so well on my skin. It’s easy to blend with a brush and doesn’t cake up or feel heavy. Have you tried this BB cream? Do you have another favourite cruelty free and vegan BB cream? #meccabeauty #crueltyfreebeauty #veganbeauty #lovealinta

    Love, Alinta
    6 months ago
    View on Instagram |
    9/9

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