Facial contouring can change your life. It really can. It can change the shape of your face and, retroactively, change how you feel about yourself. With contouring, you are in complete control of what you look like, and what you choose to present to the world.
How do you contour? Let’s start with the basics.
First, you’re going to want to apply your regular foundation over the whole of your face. Next, you’ll apply a darker foundation, directly beneath your cheekbones, in a triangular streak. Other base areas for darker foundation are below the jawline, and on either side of the nose and forehead. Next, you’ll want to blend. Then, you’ll add the lighter foundation under your eyes, atop your cheekbones, and on your forehead, nose and chin, if you so wish. Blend, again, brush your face with translucent powder, and you’re done!
Not so fast. While the process may sound easy, enough, there are a few, common contouring mistakes that you are definitely going to want to avoid:
Going Too Dark
One of the main things to remember when selecting contouring products especially, if you’re a beginner is to never go too dark. Darker colors will make your features appear smaller and more diminished, which is the opposite of what you’re trying to achieve. Toodark contouring products also have a tendency to make your skin look streaky, and clownish, rather than natural. So, be sure to select a contouring product that is, at the most, two shades darker than the color of your skin. Any darker, and you’ll regret it.
On the opposite end of the “goingtoodark” spectrum, is overdoing it with the highlighting. Going crazy with your highlighter won’t successfully contour your face, but it will probably make you glow in the dark. To avoid this shimmery nightmare, be sure to stick to highlighting just the base areas of the face, such as the bridge of the nose, the cupid’s bow, the top of the cheekbones, the base of the chin and the top of the eyebrows. And, much like darker contouring products, be sure to select a highlighting product that is only slightly lighter than your natural skin tone.
Blending is an essential aspect of contouring. Blending improperly, or worse foregoing this step, altogether, will lead to a cakey, streaky disaster. In order to properly blend, you’ll, first, need the right brush. Larger, bushier brushes are the way to go, when it comes to contouring, like this contour brush from Bodyography.
Next, you’ll need to be aware of how to blend. Be sure to blend around the edges of your face to assure that are no obvious, harsh divisions between the light and dark makeup contrasts. Also, when blending, be sure to not mix the colors up, too much. You’ll want them to, generally, be in the same place on your face that you originally applied them. Mixing them in too much will decrease the contouring effect.
Too Much Blush
Too much blush, when contouring, can be a huge mistake. Your face has already been highlighted and bronzed, and an extra dollop of blush might make it look a bit too cartoonish. Less is definitely more, in this situation because you don’t want to overpower the contouring. A subtle amount of color on the apples of your cheeks is more than enough to make you look lovely.
Light foundation Too Close To The Eyes
This one can be tricky. It might feel like a logical step to want to lighten and cover up the shadowy area under your eyes, but adding too light a foundation will cause that area to look unnatural, and to contrast too heavily with the rest of the face. The solution is to initially apply an orangetoned concealer to the area. Then, cover it with a foundation that is similar to the color of your natural skin tone. This will cover up any unwanted circles or shadows, and also highlight the area, appropriately.
Forgetting To Complete The Look
Congratulations! You’ve avoided all the common mistakes, and have successfully contoured your face. But, there’s just one thing missing: The rest of your makeup! It’s an easy thing to forget. You’ve spent so much time mapping your face, and carefully contouring, that you’ve forgotten the everyday essentials, like eye makeup and lipstick. Without the addition of these staples, the contouring will look obvious, and all will have been for naught. All you need to do is put on a subtle shade of lipstick, some eyeshadow and mascara, and you’re ready to hit the town!