Love them or hate them (ugh), the Kardashians have got the art of contouring down to a science. Contouring has come a long way since the 80’s when harsh lines of demarcation were the norm, rather than the exception. If you haven’t tried it lately, you’ll definitely want to give it a go!
Perfected by makeup artists on photo shoots and runway shows, contouring and highlighting your face is a way to subtly enhance and define your features and if the numbers are any indication a lot of women are getting in on the trend. Mintel–the world’s leading market intelligence agency–reports that launches of face makeup positioned as contouring products grew 230% between 2012 and 2014. This huge increase percentage-wise means that there are a lot of women out there who have the means to play up and downplay specific features so they’ll look their best whenever they choose. It also means that there are probably a lot of women doing it wrong.
Want to contour like a professional makeup artist? These 4 tips will help you get it right:
- CONSIDER YOUR FACE SHAPE: Contouring can help you balance your proportions, enhance your best features and play down those that you deem less than ideal. Covet higher cheekbones? You can get them. Desperate for a slimmer nose? Easily done. Your face can be made to look longer, slimmer, wider…whatever you desire. Contouring makes it simple to visually create the bone structure you wish you were born with.
- CHOOSE YOUR WEAPON: There are many formulas on the market that can help you achieve a perfectly natural contour. Popular options include powders, pencils, creams and even foundations, but keep in mind that you’ll get the most natural results when you choose a product just one to two shades lighter or darker than your natural skin tone. If you go too dark for more contrast, it will look like you are trying too hard.
- BLEND, BABY BLEND: The most important thing you can do for modern and professional looking results is to blend well. For contouring and highlighting you can’t really blend enough since any line of demarcation will look fake. When it comes to a natural finish, beauty blenders, sponges and the right contour brush will be your new best friends.
- DON’T MISS SPOTS: Contour underneath your jaw for a younger-looking, tighter jawline. Add a little light to the center of your face (mid-forehead, nose and chin). An add a pop of blush for subtle color on the apples of your cheeks.
OUR FAVORITE CONTOURING KITS:
Smashbox Step-by-Step Contour Stick Trio ($45) comes with a how-to insert and super creamy blendable sticks to create highlights, shadows and the appearance of perfect bone structure so you can easily put your best face forward.
Viseart Corrector, Contour, Camouflage HD Palette ($80) does it all with 12 easily blendable shades in a plant-based cream formula that’s gentle enough for sensitive skin. Besides concealing, correcting, highlighting and contouring you can use it to even out your complexion and cover tattoos or scars. Available in 2 color palettes to suit all skin tones.
Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit ($40) is a 6 shade palette containing 3 lighter and 3 darker shades, perfect for highlighting and contouring your face. Best when used in conjunction with an angled contour brush. Depending on your skin tone, choose the light to medium, medium to tan or tan to deep.