Contouring Tips from Pros

Choosing the Right Contouring Products

Contouring is a popular makeup technique that can achieve a sculpted look, but choosing the right contouring product for your skin type and tone is crucial. There are different formulas of contouring products, including cream, stick, powder, and liquid bronzers. Even celebrities like Jennifer Lopez recommend using your fingers to blend the product for a seamless finish.

Consider Your Skin’s Undertones

When selecting contour shades, it’s essential to consider the undertones of your skin. Matte bronzers that are one to two shades darker than your skin tone are recommended for contouring. Cool-toned contour makeup with gray in it is often better than gold or bronze-based products. If you’re unsure about your undertones, consult with a makeup artist or beauty expert for personalized recommendations.

Choose the Right Formula

Cream and liquid contouring products should be applied in thin layers and blended well to avoid a patchy finish. Stick and powder formulas are more forgiving and easier to blend, making them a good choice for beginners. Look for contouring kits that include multiple shades for a natural, multidimensional look. Brands like Cosmopolitan offers great tips for contouring oval faces.

Round Face

For round faces, a delicate touch is essential to avoid making the face appear wider or rounder. Contour should be applied along the temples, under the cheekbones, and along the jawline. Blush can also be used to sculpt and define facial features. Check out this Byrdie article for more tips on contouring round faces.

Square Face

Square faces benefit from contouring along the jawline and forehead to soften angles. Additionally, applying contour under the cheekbones can create a more sculpted appearance. Marie Claire offers a step-by-step guide for contouring heart-shaped faces.

Diamond Face

For diamond-shaped faces, contour should be applied along the temples and under the cheekbones to create balance. Blush can be used to add warmth and dimension. Elle shares expert tips for contouring diamond faces.

Long Face

Contouring a long face involves applying product along the hairline, under the cheekbones, and along the jawline to create the illusion of a shorter face. Good Housekeeping offers a detailed guide for contouring long faces.

Remember, beauty experts can help determine the perfect contour style for each face shape. With practice and the right techniques, contouring can enhance and define your unique facial features.

Blending Contour for a Natural Look

Blending contour makeup seamlessly is essential for achieving a natural look. With the right techniques and tools, you can create a flawless finish that enhances your features without appearing overdone.

Start with a Clean Canvas

Before applying contour, ensure your skin is clean and moisturized. Apply a primer and foundation that matches your skin tone. This provides a smooth base for your contour makeup. TikTok’s Barbie contour filter can guide you in placing contour products and blending them for a natural appearance.

Choose the Right Tools

Using the appropriate brushes or sponges is crucial for blending contour. Opt for an angled brush or a blending sponge to ensure precise application and seamless blending.

Apply Contour Lightly

When applying contour makeup, less is more.


Start with a small amount of product and build up gradually to avoid harsh lines. Remember to choose cool-toned contour shades, as they better mimic natural shadows on the face.

Blend, Blend, Blend

Blend your contour in small, circular motions, focusing on the areas where you applied the product. Follow the “E” or “3” contouring technique, which involves blending along an imaginary shape for slimming effects. This method can help you achieve a natural look while still defining your features.

Set Your Contour

After blending, set your contour with a setting spray or translucent powder. This ensures your makeup stays in place and maintains a flawless finish throughout the day.

Embrace the Natural Trend

Pared-down makeup is a popular bridal trend, prioritizing natural beauty and less heavy makeup. The beauty industry’s natural look trend empowers diversity, inclusivity, and self-acceptance. By mastering the art of blending contour for a natural appearance, you can confidently enhance your features while staying true to your unique beauty.

Highlighting to Complement Contouring

Highlighting is an essential step to complement contouring, as it adds a touch of radiance and accentuates the best angles of your face. To achieve a balanced look, it’s important to target specific areas for highlighting and use the right products.

One product that offers diverse options for different skin tones is the Focallure 2-Pc Contour and Highlighter Stick set. This set includes a highlighter and a contour/bronzer stick in 10 shades. The sticks have a silky cream texture, are waterproof, and smudge-proof, making them easy to use and ideal for on-the-go glam.

When applying highlighter, focus on the peaks of your cheekbones, brow bones, bridge of your nose, center of your forehead, and center of your chin. These areas catch the light and create a natural glow. For contouring, target the hollows of your cheeks, hairline, jawline, and sides of your nose. This will create depth and dimension, enhancing your natural features.


To ensure a seamless blend between your contour and highlight, use a cooler tone contour makeup containing gray. This is better for mimicking natural shades in areas like the hollows of your cheeks. Powder contour products are preferred for their blendability, and using a translucent powder or setting spray will help achieve a flawless finish.

In recent years, pared-down makeup for weddings has become a trend, prioritizing natural beauty. The “E” or “3” contouring technique is perfect for such occasions. This method involves applying contour makeup in the shape of an “E” or “3” along the side of your face, creating a slimmer appearance. Choose a matte bronzer that is one to two shades darker than your natural skin tone and use circular motions to blend it along your jawline.

Remember, finding the right shades and blending well are key to nailing the contouring and highlighting technique. Approach contouring with moderation and tailor it to your individual face shape for the best results. With these tips in mind, you’ll be well on your way to achieving a beautifully balanced and radiant look.

Common Contouring Mistakes to Avoid

Contouring is a popular makeup technique that can enhance your facial features and create a more defined look. However, there are some common mistakes that can lead to an unnatural appearance. In this section, we’ll discuss these mistakes and provide tips on how to avoid them.

Choosing the Wrong Shade

One of the most common contouring mistakes is using a shade that is too dark or too warm for your skin tone. To avoid this, choose a matte bronzer that is one to two shades darker than your skin tone, and opt for cool tones for the hollows of your cheeks. This will help prevent emphasizing wrinkles and fine lines. Sephora offers a wide range of contouring products to suit different skin tones.

Poor Blending

Another common mistake is not blending the contour properly, resulting in harsh lines. To fix this, use a blending brush or sponge and blend well using circular motions.


Start with a small amount of product and build it up gradually for a more natural look.

Incorrect Placement

Placing contour too low or too high on the cheekbones can lead to an unflattering appearance. To avoid this, place the contour higher on the cheekbones and consider your face shape when applying the product. The “E” or “3” technique is recommended for contouring, as it focuses on the entire face rather than just the hollows of your cheeks.

Overusing Lightening Concealers

Using lightening or highlighting concealers can draw attention to wrinkles and provide insufficient coverage. Instead, use color correction underneath the concealer and apply it in thin layers to achieve a more natural look.

Not Considering Skin Type

It’s important to consider your skin type when contouring. For women over 40, a cream contour 2-3 shades darker than your foundation is recommended to avoid settling into fine lines and wrinkles. An angled brush can be used to lift and sculpt cheekbones to perfection.

By avoiding these common contouring mistakes and following the tips provided, you can achieve a natural, sculpted look that enhances your facial features. Remember, practice makes perfect, so don’t be afraid to experiment and find the contouring technique that works best for you.

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