How to Contour Makeup – The Ultimate Guide for a Sculpted Look in 2023

Contouring is a makeup technique that has taken the beauty world by storm. From celebrities to influencers, everyone seems to be obsessed with achieving the perfectly chiseled look. But how do you contour makeup to get the desired results?

an illustration of a girl trying to know How to Contour Makeup.
How to Contour Makeup

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll dive into the art of contouring, providing you with in-depth and accurate information on how to achieve that flawless, sculpted appearance. So, get ready to up your makeup game and discover contouring secrets!

Mastering the Art of Contouring Makeup

Discover the transformative power of contouring makeup, a technique that can sculpt and enhance your facial features like a pro. Unveil your inner makeup artist as we delve into the essentials of this skill and reveal the secrets to achieving a flawless, balanced appearance. Let’s dive in!

Understanding the Art of Contouring

Contouring is using makeup to create shadows and highlights on the face, enhancing its natural structure and creating an illusion of more defined and chiseled features. By strategically applying darker and lighter shades, you can emphasize your cheekbones, slim your nose, and create a more balanced, proportional facial appearance.

What You’ll Need to Contour

You’ll need a few essential makeup tools and products to get started with contouring. Here’s a list of what you should have on hand:

  • Contouring product: Choose cream, powder, or stick options based on your preference and skin type. Ideally, the contour shade should be two shades darker than your foundation.
  • Highlighting product: Select a shade that is two shades lighter than your foundation. This can be a cream, powder, or liquid product.
  • Foundation and concealer: These will help create a smooth canvas for your contouring.
  • Makeup brushes: A small, angled brush for applying contour, a fluffy brush for blending, and a smaller brush for precise highlighting.
  • Beauty sponge: Useful for blending out cream or liquid products.

Prepping Your Skin

Before you begin contouring, it’s essential to create a clean, even base. Follow these steps:

  • Cleanse and moisturize your skin, ensuring it’s well-hydrated and free from any dirt or oil.
  • Apply a primer to help your makeup last longer and create a smoother surface.
  • Apply your foundation evenly, using a brush or sponge, and blend well.
  • Conceal any imperfections or dark circles with a concealer, blending it seamlessly into your foundation.

Mapping Your Face

Before applying any contour, it’s crucial to understand your face shape. Different face shapes require different contouring techniques to create a balanced and flattering look. Here’s a quick guide to contouring based on your face shape:

  • Round: Contour along the sides of your forehead, temples, and jawline. Focus on the hollows of your cheeks to create more definition.
  • Oval: Contour along the hairline, under the cheekbones, and along the jawline.
  • Square: Contour the sides of your forehead, under your cheekbones, and along your jawline to soften the edges.
  • Heart: Contour the sides of your forehead, under your cheekbones, and along the lower part of your jawline.
  • Long: Contour along the hairline, under the cheekbones, and along the chin to create more balance.

Contouring will not work if you have a dark circle so you here you will get the details about how to remove dark circles and you can also learn how to do facial at home.

Mastering the Contouring Technique

Now that you’ve prepped your skin and identified your face shape, it’s time to start contouring. Follow these steps:

A. Contouring

Using your contouring product and a small, angled brush, create thin lines along the areas you want to sculpt, based on your face shape.
For your nose, apply the contour along the sides, starting from your brow bone and working your way down toward the tip.
Remember to keep the contour lines subtle, as you can always build up the product later.

B. Blending

  • Using a fluffy brush or a damp beauty sponge, blend the contour lines into your foundation, ensuring there are no harsh lines or visible edges. Blend in small, circular motions for a seamless finish.
  • For cream or stick products, a damp beauty sponge may provide better results, while a fluffy brush works well for powder contour.
  • Remember to blend your nose contour carefully, avoiding any harsh lines that might make your nose appear unnatural.

C. Highlighting

Apply your highlighting product on the areas of your face where light naturally hits. These areas include the tops of your cheekbones, the bridge of your nose, the center of your forehead, your brow bones, and your cupid’s bow.

Use a small brush for precise application and blend the highlighter seamlessly into your foundation.

For a more subtle effect, opt for a matte highlighter. If you’re looking for a more dramatic, glowing look, use a shimmery product.

Setting Your Contour

After contouring and highlighting, set your makeup in place to ensure it lasts throughout the day. Follow these steps:

  • Apply a translucent setting powder all over your face, focusing on the areas where you applied your contour and highlight.
  • If you prefer a more dewy finish, you can skip setting your highlight or use a setting spray instead.
  • Gently buff the setting powder into your skin with a fluffy brush, ensuring it’s well-blended and doesn’t look cakey.

Adding the Finishing Touches

To complete your contoured makeup look, add some finishing touches:

  • Apply blush to the apples of your cheeks, blending it into your contour for a seamless transition.
  • Fill in your eyebrows to frame your face and bring more definition to your features.
  • Finish your look with eye makeup, lip color, and a setting spray to lock everything in place.

Happy Contouring!

Contouring makeup may seem intimidating, but with the right tools, products, and techniques, you can achieve a stunning, sculpted look that enhances your natural beauty. Remember to choose the right contour and highlight shades for your skin tone, blend well, and tailor your contouring to your unique face shape. With practice and patience, you’ll soon master the art of contouring, creating captivating and engaging looks that leave a lasting impression.


How do you contour makeup for beginners?

Choose appropriate contour and highlight shades, identify the areas to contour and highlight, apply the products, and blend well.

Do you contour before or after foundation?

Contouring is typically done after applying foundation to create a smooth, even base for the contour and highlight products.

What are the easiest ways to contour?

Easiest ways include using a cream contour stick for easy application and blending, and focusing on key areas such as cheekbones, jawline, and nose.

Which contour is best for beginners?

A cream contour stick or powder contour kit with a few shades is ideal for beginners, as they are easy to apply and blend. Look for a product that matches your skin tone and undertone.

Recent Articles

Related Stories