We're not going to tell you that contouring is easy, but we will say that, once mastered, you'll wonder how you ever lived without it. Contouring uses dark and light makeup to give definition to the face, slim down the parts you’re not so keen on, and emphasize the bits you love. Here's what you need to know to get started.
Start by colour correcting any dark spots or under-eye circles, and applying your regular foundation and a creamy concealer like Velvet Concepts Abracadabra Crème Concealer (it contains rosemary oil to nourish skin). And then you're ready to start contouring. Cream contour formulas are best for beginners as they're easier to blend, while powders offer more longevity.
It's important to distinguish between a "highlight contour shade" and a regular "highlighter". The former is matte, and is the lightest shade in a contour kit or a lighter shade of concealer (if you're using concealer as contour), while the latter has sheen. Choose a highlight that's no more than two shades lighter than your skin tone, and apply on the high points of your face – the inner corners of the eyes, under the brow bones, tops of the cheekbones, bridge of the nose, cupid's bow, and the centre of the chin. Try Napoleon Perdis Pro Palette Concealer +, which features three shades in one pot so you can customise colour. Use a brush, like Nude by Nature Contour Brush, which features ultra-soft synthetic bristles, with powder highlighters, and a sponge or fingers for creams and liquids.
If you prefer, you can use a matte concealer like the jojoba-oil-enriched Nude by Nature Liquid Mineral Concealer or bronzer as a contour stand-in such as Napoleon Perdis Matte Bronze, a super-fine powder bronzer, so long as you select one that's no more than two shades darker than your natural skin tone. Apply in the hollows of the cheeks, along the hairline and temples, under the chin and on either side of the nose. Remember, start with a light layer of highlight and contour (it's easier to add more at the end than take it off) and blend, blend, blend. Then blend some more.
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