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How to Contour Your Face – Contouring for Beginners

There are a million ways to contour your face but unless you’re using a guide specific to your face shape you can end up with unwanted results. The purpose of contouring your face is to define, and sometimes create, cheekbones and minimize the areas you’re not happy with. With the right contouring you can accentuate your already gorgeous self, but with the wrong contouring, you can look like a dirty clown.

How to Contour

I’ve found some helpful diagrams to help you learn how to contour your face. Just find the one for your face shape and try your hand at it. If you don’t get it right the first time try using different makeup and tools. There’s a shopping guide at the end with some hand-picked products perfect for contouring your face (I use affiliate links, so when you buy through those links I get a small commission – you still pay the same price, or less if there’s a special coupon).

First things first, get the right shade

The perfect contour is two colors deeper than your natural complexion. If you’re unsure how to get the right shade you can go by your foundation. You want the difference between your foundation and contour to be slightly noticeable. If you use a light beige foundation try a medium beige contour (just an example). If you have a light complexion go for more taupe colors. Try grayish browns for medium complexions and cognac colors for darker skin tones.

How to Contour

What type of contour do you need?

Contour, like most other makeups, comes in many forms. If you want a more natural and/or subtle look, go for a liquid matte bronzer.  If you want your look to really pop then try a cream based contour stick. For a sophisticated look, you should choose a non-shimmer powder contour. These also work well on oily/shiny skin. Just be sure to use a translucent powder first.

Where do you put the contour?

If you use contour on every part of your face you’re essentially just applying a foundation or bronzer. Instead of using it everywhere, only apply contour on areas you want to sculpt. Start with the hollows of your cheeks and along your jaw line. You can also use contour to slim/shorten the appearance of your nose.

Use the guides below to figure out where to apply your contouring agent and remember to always blend up and out!

How to Contour a Square Face Shape

How to Contour an Oval Face Shape

How to Contour a Round Face Shape

Contour Shopping Guide

Use this guide to find the best contour products for your face. If you have a preferred favorite before to leave a comment and let me know!

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Written by Amber

Amber is a 30 something country girl who is a habitual optimist, animal lover, reluctant foodie, and adventure seeker.