Hey you, spade face! Do you have a face that’s all big like a spade and you would like to know how to get it to look less like a spade and more like a face? Well lucky you, you’re in the right place!
‘Contouring’ has without doubt been the buzz word of the makeup industry for a couple of years now. Made famous by that chiseled lunatic Kim Kardashian, contouring is the art of creating shadows and highlights to make your face look
like someone else’s the best it can.
I’ve trawled through endless tutorials on contouring and now have a routine I’m fairly happy with. I’m by no means a pro (I don’t even have my own reality show OR a rapper boyfriend yet so I’m obviously no good at all really) and everything I do is just an amalgamation of other tutorials, so I’m not really going to be saying anything revolutionary. But if, like me, you find yourself a bit lost in some of the more complex contouring guides out there (and end up shouting “But I don’t own any Ben Nye Banana Powder!” furiously at the screen) then you may find something in this beginners’ guide useful.
What Products Do You Need for Contouring?
I’d say that all you essentially need for contouring is a bronzer that is several shades darker than your base and a highlighter that is several shades lighter. The greater the difference in these shades, the more prominent the contrast will be. I’ve tried powdered bronzers and highlighters before, but found that cream ones work best for me as they’re much more blendable. I’m currently using two Seventeen products: the Instant Glow Cream Bronzer (there’s only one shade I believe) and the Stay Time 18 Hour concealer in Extra Fair. The key is for both of these products to be matte – you don’t want glitter all over the place or you’ll look like a discoball.
For blending, I use either my buffing brush or my Real Teachniques Beauty Blender. Both work really well, so as long as you know you have a tool that’s good for blending then you should be fine.
Where To Apply Products for Contouring
After applying my base as usual, I then shadow and highlight in these areas:
When I initially ventured into the world of contouring, I thought it was just about the cheekbones – bronzer below and highlighter on the bone. However you can basically shadow and highlight just about your entire face. Underneath the cheekbones, down the jawline, down the sides of your nose, on your temples and even a bit around the chin can all be made into shadows.
You can then highlight across the cheekbones and underneath the eyes (aim for a triangle shape), down the nose, on the cupids’ bow, your chin, your forehead, the archs of your eyebrows and the bit of cheek between the jaw and cheekbone. Once this is all blended in, the effect should be subtle – you shouldn’t notice any harsh lines whatsoever.
An optional extra step here is to add more highlighter onto certain areas, namely the top of the cheekbones, a bit on the bridge of the nose and the cupids’ bow. For this step, you can use more of a shimmery highlighter (I use Seventeen’s Wow! Skin 3 Way Highlighter), though be sure not to place it anywhere where it can be mistaken for oil/sweat – sweaty upper lips are so not Kim K.
What do you all think of contouring? Are you a pro or new to the whole thing? Share your tips below!