Learning how to contour your face can be daunting for makeup newbies. If you really want to define your features, you must brave the waters and start contouring. Don’t worry! It’s actually much easier than you think. You can highlight and sculpt your face in no time if you gather the right tools and take time to master the skill. Before you start practicing, read this article because we’re showing you how to contour step-by-step!
How to Contour Your Face for Beginners
1. Choose a good face contouring kit
Contouring your face starts with choosing the right products. Prepare a foundation that matches your skin tone and a contouring kit with two important shades. One has to be two shades darker than your skin while the other has to be two shades lighter.
Instead of a contouring kit, you can also opt for foundation sticks, concealers, and bronzers. Just keep in mind that you need two shades of color to contour your face.
Contouring with Powder vs Cream
Consider your skin type when you choose your contour products. If you have dry skin, a powder contour may not be the best option for you. Powders may emphasize the dryness, lines, and wrinkles. A cream-based contour kit may suit you better instead.
If you have oily skin, you can go for powder contours. You may also use lightweight cream-based products then apply a setting powder on top. Of course, you can always mix and match your products.
Other Basic Tools to Prepare
- Setting powder
- Foundation brush, sponge, or beauty blender
- Concealer brush
- Fluffy brush or powder brush
Tip: Dab some foundation on your jawline or cheek to find the right match for your face and neck. Don’t swatch on your hand or wrist!
2. Prepare your face
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You need a smooth and clean base to contour well. Make sure you wash your face first and exfoliate to remove dead skin. Then, apply moisturizer. Remember not to use too much moisturizer as this may make your face too oily. Let it soak for a few minutes before applying primer.
Tip: If you want a lightweight base, opt for tinted moisturizer and skip applying foundation altogether.
3. Polish your skin further.
Using your fingertips, a sponge, or a brush, apply foundation all over your face. Don’t forget to include the neck, too. Blend the foundation well for a seamless finish. Then, polish your skin further by using concealer to smoothen scars and spots.
Tip: You can map out the areas you want to contour now that you have a smooth base.
Apply the lighter shade on parts of your face, typically the t-zone area, where light would normally hit. This is why we’re suggesting that you only go for a highlighting shade that is only two shades lighter than your skin. Just imagine if you use a much fairer shade and light hits your face!
When you’re highlighting, remember to focus on these areas:
- Center of your forehead
- Brow lines
- Under the eyes
- Nose bridge
- Apple of your cheeks
- Middle of the upper lip
- Center of the chin
Tip: Use a clean foundation brush or contour brush.
Note: Some people create the shadows first. But we find that highlighting before sculpting is easier.
5. Sculpt your face.
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Now, here comes the part where you sculpt or apply shadows to your face. You can define your shape however you wish—you can keep it simple or go for a glam look. Just take note that the shadows are typically applied here:
- Below the hairline
- Hollows of your cheek
- Sides of your nose
- Along the jawline
6. Blend really well.
Once you’ve marked out the parts you wish to contour, blend everything with a beauty blender or a blending brush. Don’t spread the colors around too much but make sure the there are no sharp lines between the shades. Just blend as gently and thoroughly as you can.
Tip: If you’re using a beauty blender, blend in pressing motions. If you’re using a brush, buff gently. Remember, you don’t ‘swipe’ when you blend.
Note: You can apply blush and shimmery highlighter to amp up your look!
7. Set everything
Give your contour a smooth finish by setting everything with powder. With a fluffy brush, lightly apply the setting powder or translucent powder all over your face. Focus on your t-zone or the areas where you usually get oily.
One last tip: if you’re new to contouring, don’t splurge on high-end brands just yet. Experiment with drugstore products as you acquaint yourself with the process.
Watch this video and learn how to contour face from beauty blogger Tina Yong:
Face contouring ideally gives more definition to your features. This basically means you’re just bringing out the qualities you already have. So, don’t think you’re contouring on a plain and empty canvas. Your face has a unique shape with beautiful curves that you can define even more with contouring.
What other contour face tips do you know? Share them with us in the comments section!