I know I promised this post a while ago, to be honest I was a little lazy to do it.
Firstly I have attended basic makeup lessons so I’m not an expert when it comes to contouring. That said I learnt the art by watching makeup tutorials and reading up on it. Contouring and highlighting is not a new makeup trick but a lot of focus has been on it as makeup artists have been implementing them in their various looks.
Kim Kardashian and her siblings are forerunners when it comes to contouring, as far as magazines using them as the models when describing the trend.
Essentially what is contouring and highlighting?
When you contour you’re basically defining a feature. Contouring helps to define cheekbones and jawline ,make larger foreheads appear smaller and it helps to slim your nose. So basically you can create an illusion of perfect features if you contour properly.
On the other hand when you highlight a feature it makes the feature and out. Like your cheekbones, brow bone and Cupid’s bow.
When I started learning how to contour I did a little research on my good old friend Google and I found these easy to follow pictures that show exactly how execute this truck.
Products needed for contouring and highlighting.
For contouring you would need a cream or powder based product that’s two to three shades darker than your skin tone. You could use matte bronzer or foundation. When contouring for daytime look bronzer is better since it’s not too stark.
1- Powder: Matte Bronzer- Smashbox Skin lights bronzer. I love this and I use this product daily to create a subtle contour.
2- Cream Based: Chanel’s Soleil Tan De Chanel bronzer which I use if I want something with a little more intensity. The little tub is a cream blush from Inglot (got it on sale so it’s no longer available in this shade) which has a brownish tone, it works when I want to contour.
For highlighting you would need a product that has a shimmer or one that is lighter than your skin tone. You could just judge by your skin tone what suits you more. Pink and beige toned products work on light-medium skin and bronze tones work on darker skin tones.
1- Cream Based: M•A•C cream colour base in Hush.
2- Powder based- Shimmer Balls from The Body Shop. This was a limited edition packaging but these are still available.
You could also use liquid illuminators to highlight.
If you using cream based products you could use a concealer that’s lighter than your skin tone.
Powder based contouring and highlighting is softer than a cream based contour. Powders can be used over your foundation but when you use creams you should blend the cream products first and then use your foundation over. That’s the reason why cream based contouring and highlighting is not really recommended for daily use as it’s very harsh since you piling a ton of products on your face.
Yes contouring and highlighting require special brushes.
2. Small rounded brushes are used to contour the nose.
3. Angled brushes are used with powder based products and are great to use when applying product to the hollow of your cheeks.
1- The fan brush is used for powder highlighters.
2- A stippling brush is used for cream based products. You could also use your fingers.
Do’s and Don’ts:
– Do suck in your cheeks and make a duck face when contouring your cheek bones. This is the perfect guideline.
-Don’t just draw lines. This is my over peeve which I have seen many makeup artists do. Yes the contour is there but it’s just a streak across both cheeks.
– Do blend to curb the above. Blending is the main thing to remember as your face won’t look like you used it as a canvas for geometry.
– Do make your nose appear slimmer (refer to picture tutorials above), and always use highlighter with the contour or it ain’t gonna look pretty.
-Do make your double chin appear non existent buy contouring on your jawline.
– Don’t overdo the highlighter as you might look more disco ball than contour queen.
If you’re keen to learn more I suggest watching tutorials as they are a major help. I particularly found Huda from Huda Beauty to be a really great teacher as she contours using various products. It’s also a great way to learn about which products to use.
The hype has brought up contour kits which combine both contouring and highlighting products together thus making it easier when choosing products.
I hope this proves to be some sort of help and guideline. I have keen interest in makeup and I’m hoping to pursue it on a larger scale this year hopefully.
Oh and I’m not perfect I contour