When it comes to bronzers, very few shades on the market hold a candle to NARS' Laguna. This cult-favorite buy produces the perfect sun-kissed glow, and it's so popular that it's regularly lauded as a favorite among celebrities and beauty gurus alike. The problem? At $40, this compact isn't exactly cheap. So in the hopes of finding a more wallet-friendly alternative, I took to the internet to find the best NARS Laguna dupes.
Lucky for me (and you), there's a lot of information out there in the form of Reddit threads, Instagram posts, and YouTube beauty channels. One of my favorites, the Dupe Detectives, filmed an entire video dedicated to finding cheaper versions of Laguna. This video is useful, because it allows you to see the shades on skin if you're unable to swatch them on your own. Reddit is also home to a treasure trove of dupe discoveries, with dozens of threads discussing the pros and cons of different products. One quick search of "NARS Laguna dupes" brings up tons of recommendations from beauty fanatics around the globe. But it does take some digging — which is why I did all the heavy lifting for you.
After hours of research, product testing, and beauty-blogger-video-watching, I've compiled the three most highly recommended dupes for NARS Laguna just below. The best part? They all cost less than $10.
1. The Closest Dupe To Laguna On The Market — But You Get Less Product, And It's Not As Buildable
Of all of the dupes listed on Reddit and YouTube, e.l.f's Studio Contouring Blush And Bronzing Powder in 'St. Lucia' is one that comes up the most. The girls over at Dupe Detectives claim that St. Lucia is a dead-ringer for Laguna, and the swatches they made in their video seem to indicate that's true. e.l.f's duo also comes with a matching blush, which is a nice bonus for those who want their blush and bronzer to compliment one another. The fact that it's cruelty-free is a big winner for a lot of folks, especially since that isn't something Laguna can claim (NARS sells in China, and regulations there require animal testing).
The one setback of e.l.f's bronzer is that, unlike Laguna, it's not super buildable. Laguna goes on quite thin, allowing you to naturally build up color as you go. St. Lucia gives you much more pigment with every swipe, which means it's easy to put on a little too much. But with a light hand, these two products are pretty much equals. Just make sure to have a buffing brush on hand in case you get a little overzealous with your application.
2. Another Close Dupe, But It's Scented
Physician's Formula Butter Bronzer in 'Bronzer' is another Laguna dupe beauty bloggers swear by. Since it's not a two-in-one, like e.l.f's is, this compact will last you much longer — you're getting much more of the actual bronzer. This is another cruelty-free pick, so animal-lovers, rejoice!
One drawback to the Butter Bronzer, however, is the fact that it's scented. This can make it difficult for folks with sensitive skin types to use. But aside from that minor issue, Butter Bronzer is a great option if you're looking for a cheap alternative to Laguna that will last you a while.
3. A Matte Formula, If You Love The Shade But Hate The Shimmer
One of the reasons why I've never been able to fall in love with Laguna is because of the sparkly sheen it casts on your face. If you're like me, and you prefer matte makeup, reach for NYX's Professional Matte Bronzer in 'Medium.' This is another Reddit favorite because of the color payoff. It's super similar to Laguna, in that it's buildable, it doesn't have a scent, and it's actually the cheapest dupe on this list. If you're able to go without the sheen, opt for this matte option instead. You may find you don't even miss the sparkle.
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