10 Instant Ways to Contour Your Face


Contouring, as a crucial technique of makeup art, is becoming more and more popular these days. The tricks of this technique had formerly been secrets of runway models and girls from glossy mags’ covers. Luckily, the secrets are revealed, and any woman can use this magic in her daily makeup. Contouring makeup can be difficult. Unless you have naturally chiseled cheekbones and a finely structured jaw, then you may want to “sculpt” your face with makeup. The accentuation should be subtle, so you don’t have to dip your brush into dark bronzer and apply a tan stripe below your cheeks. The key is to understand how to play light and shadow off one another. The key is in proficiency and illusion. Don’t be scared, it isn’t rocket science at all! Check out ten different ways to contour your face and pick the ones that work best for you.

1. Primer

Primer is a must-have for every woman’s makeup. It fulfills an important function of smoothing, flattening, and concealing. It is almost incomparable, unless you compare a primer with underwear – it proves that there’s a place for everything and it keeps everything in its place. As far as a primer is designed to keep other things in place, all what you apply over it instantly acquires better look. Primer is a necessity when contouring because you need shadow to stay out of highlight areas and vice versa.

If you want to conceal wrinkles, visually reduce pores or even out your skin, a primer will easily cope with the task. A good primer can make the difference between strong contours and a mess of makeup that blends together into one uniform color. While doing the above listed work, it’ll set up the great basis for foundation, and stitch makeup and skincare together. One of the best things about primers is that they don’t cause acne. Since they are non-comedogenic, they won’t evoke skin irritation. So there’s no difference whether your skin is inclined to acneiform rash or clogged pores.

2. Dotting Base Shades

To get a perfect-looking skin, you need an excellent foundation. Statistically, only fifteen per cent of women pick the apt shade and apply it correctly. Use your fingers to apply two different base shades over your primer. The first shade, which is one shade lighter than your skin tone, will go in the center of your face. That means you should put a dot on your nose, forehead, and chin. Put one dot on each cheek, at the highest point. Don’t forget about the quantity of the shade, try not to apply too much. Follow up the dots of light shade with a color that is one shade darker than your skin tone. This shade goes around the perimeter of your face (near your hairline, along the base of your jaw, and near your ears) and in the creases where your nose meets your face. Blend the two shades together with a natural bristle brush. Keep in mind that the margins between the colors, as well as tones near your hairline should be smoothly blurred.

This technique works well for foundation shades and can be combined with other techniques, such as highlighting powder. This is one of the best ways to contour your face.

More: 10 Classic Makeup Looks to Try

3. Highlighting Powder

Highlighting powder is something that can instantly improve your beautiful face. It provides you gleaming appearance, if applied properly. This trick gives an impression of glowing from within. In the process of choosing a highlighting powder you should definitely take care of the tone of your skin. In case sallowness is inherent to your skin, highlighters of pink colors will surely stand out, but if your skin is rather pale, powder of pink shades will do excellent job for you.

More: 10 Makeup Tips for Different Complexions

Highlighting powder should be two shades lighter than your foundation. You will want to use this only on the brightest highlight areas of your face (cheekbones mostly). Remember to dab it on. If you do brush, do so with short, gentle, circular strokes to avoid moving your foundation. Giving your skin a moisturized look is the main aim when using highlighter. This procedure makes you look as if you have recently moisturized your skin, though it doesn’t mean that your face will look too glossy. When buying a highlighter, make sure you try it on the back of your hand blending it well. Your goal is to buy a highlighter that will provide your skin with a soft light, not a beauty product that will make you look older.

4. Glimmer versus Matte

To gleam or not to gleam – that is the question. Choosing either glimmer or matte for your makeup is initially a mistake. You should avoid running to extremes, and stick to a point that there must be a harmony in everything. Face contouring is no exception. If you want to contour your face successfully, combining glimmer and matte is a must. They both should be present in any makeup, but the problem is how to combine these opposites. It stands to reason that there are certain rules of using matte and shimmer.

More: 10 Ways to Wear Matte Lipstick

The truth is that brighter, glimmering colors work well for light areas. Matte colors work best for the shaded regions of your face. Matte absorbs light, while shimmers reflect it, so use these finishes accordingly. You want a bit of reflection on the highest points of your face, but never on your jawline. If you fail to follow this piece of advice, your face will look disproportional or flat. So be sure to use glimmer on your forehead, just a bit on top of your nose (but not the alae of the nose – only darker and matte colors are possible to be applied there), cheeks and tip of your chin. Remember that light color combined with shimmer gives the section feeling of bringing it nearer and bigger.

5. Use a Kit

Most beginners in the field of makeup want something that will ease their “sufferings.” The wide variety of different shades can make you scared so if you are a green hand, you may want to consider using a kit. Kits usually contain the three shades you need to create contour and instructions as to how to use the shades appropriately. They are also absolutely portable, so even if you are out of home on business or whatever, a kit will make your beauty bag much smaller than it could be with plenty of separate shades.

Kits may not provide the perfect shades for your skin tone, but they can take a lot of the guess work out of the process for beginners. A good kit can become the first teacher for a newbie. You can see the relevance of the colors in the kit, try them, and decide whether they are right for you. Then if you see that the tones don’t match your skin perfectly, and you feel ready to choosing everything individually, you may try to change some of them basing on your experience with the kit. So to make short of long, a kit is a great place to start learning.

6. Use Blush

Blush makes an inevitable part of any makeup. Disregarding blush can lead to incompleteness of your look. This is a marvelous tool, capable of either making you look really adorable, or doing a lot of harm if used incorrectly. If a woman is successful in applying blush, she may turn into a princess with harmonic makeup, otherwise she may get a cheap look. So be careful. The major goal of using blush in makeup is to resemble a light flush and give the skin healthy and fresh look.

More: 10 Great Reasons to Use Blush

It’s important to remember that the color of blush should not contrast with your skin tone. As far as natural, bright and attractive look is your aim, you should never run it into the ground. Blush offers a nice final touch to a contour job by adding a little color to your face. In general, you want to use a slightly pink tone and apply it just a little behind the apples of the cheeks. Make sure the blush has a little bit of glimmer in it. Never use a flat or matte blush, always go for a cream blush. Cream blush is rather concentrated, so make sure you blended the borders carefully.

7. Contour Your Nose

Nose contouring plays a big role in a contouring makeup. Many women are not satisfied with their nose. Your nose might be too big or too small, too wide or too long. There are two possible ways out: nose job and contouring. The second way is much cheaper, without consequences and it’s absolutely painless. Contouring can be used to make your nose look smaller or larger, though most people opt to minimize the nose.

A darker tone on the underside of the tip of your nose will make it appear to protrude less. Darker colors in the midsection where the nose meets the face can help to smooth the transition from the widest part of the nose, making it appear smaller. Applying highlighter to the bridge of the nose can make it appear thinner. Don’t forget about the tips about glimmer and matte, and make sure you blend the colors carefully. Though, on the other hand, do not push too hard, because it may lead to blurring the tones. In other words, you will have to find the golden medium while contouring your face. If you do everything correctly, you will get a chiseled nose, which will add a gentle elegance to the whole look.

8. Diagonal Strokes to Thin Your Cheeks

Most of us think that the thinner cheeks, the better. This can be easily done through some shades and just a little bit of patience. It is known that vertical lines make things look slimmer, and vice versa, horizontal lines bring fullness. Vertical lines would look unnaturally on your face that is why diagonal strokes are used in order to make the face look more stretched. The diagonal application of a shade of foundation that is darker than your skin can be used to thin your cheeks. Start at the center of your cheek and stroke toward your ear using an upward motion. It can help to make a “fish face” while doing this so that you know where to put the color (on the upper side of the depression created). Once the darker color is applied, blend it together with the highlight color to produce smooth transitions. At this step the tones should be carefully chosen, because if you pick a tone which is too dark for your complexion, it will show up too much and your cheeks won’t look naturally. I recommend you to choose a color approximately two tones darker, and while creating transitions try not to dilute the colors towards your mouth.

9. Enlarge Your Eyes

Eyes are the window to the soul, and in order to look fabulous, we should make these windows look bigger. If your eyes appear larger, your face and nose will appear smaller in comparison. This procedure is quite easy, though, needs a lot of practice. As soon as you get some practice, you will be able to create fantastic eyes just in a few minutes.

More: 10 Easy Ways to Enhance Your Eyes

To make your eyes look larger, apply mascara to your upper lids, fill in your brows with a pencil, and trace your lower lash line with a pencil that is slightly darker than your skin tone. Trace your upper lash line with a light blue shade. End with a shimmery neutral shade on the center of your lid. If your eyes are a bit close-set, the solution is to apply lighter, shimmering eye-shades in the inner part of the eye, and the shades should get darker towards the external parts. Pay attention to the colors you are going to apply. Use from two to four tones since many colors on your eyes may look fussy. Moreover, the shades won’t look beautiful when applied onto your temples. Plus, this will not make your eyes bigger.

10. Shape Your Eyebrows

The right eyebrow shape can make a huge difference in the appearance of your face. A higher arch will make a round face look thinner and taller. A less prominent arch will help make a tall face look more robust. First of all, keep in mind that plucking your eyebrow arch incorrectly will spoil the whole look. Defining the right place for the arch is very easy. Take any pencil, and place it parallel to the outer edge of your iris. The perfect place for the arch is right where the pencil crosses the eyebrow.

The length of your eyebrows also matters a lot. They should end together with your brow bone. Another thing you should stop doing is over-tweezing. Professionals in this sphere claim that you may tweeze only once every three weeks. The last but not least is the color of your eyebrows. Do not overdo! A wrong eyebrow color can destroy the charm of the most perfect face. Too dark colors look screaming, especially with fair hair. The rule here is very easy: brunettes should choose a color 2-3 tones lighter than their hair, and blondes need eyebrows 2-3 tones darker than their hair. Pay very close attention to your eyebrows as their shape and color can drastically alter the appearance of your face.

Reed also – 7 Tips on How to Shape Your Eyebrows

Contouring is an art that takes practice to perfect. Don’t be afraid to experiment a bit with the proper placement of light and dark areas on your face while trying to achieve your best look. If you need to practice, buy a cheap makeup that you won’t feel bad taking off immediately after you put it on. Once you have your technique down from practice with the inexpensive makeup, you switch to premium products.