Everyone can contour successfully, if they contour correctly. To contour like Kim Kardashian may not be the look everyone wants but one thing for sure- intelligent contouring makes a positive difference.Kim Kardashian has that exotic type of beauty with sultry darker skin that takes well to contour. She also uses creams and concealers. This article is all about ‘contouring lite’ with simple powders. Face contouring with powders will give a more natural finish for everyday.
Powders blend easily and do not result in a heavy finish. Keep in mind you can get away with more in-depth contouring at night, but in the day it’s close up, personal and bright, so your contouring should be very subtle.
Powder on powder
When you work with powders- you need to use only powders so that application is easy and the effect is not too noticeable. Powders will stick to creams and you will get blotches and require more blending.
The same principle applies to cream based contours, if you decide to use them. Cream contours, work well with cream highlighters for blending purposes. In this case you may only finish with powder. The rule to remember is like with like.
What you need
1)A powder foundation that matches your skin tone or a translucent powder- either loose or in a compact.
2) A lightweight concealer for under the eye area. (This small area can be cream-based)
3)Quality contour powders. Contour powders that provide a few shades within the same kit are best, and are easier to use. Try to stay within two shades darker than your skin to keep it natural looking.
4) A powder highlighter that is not too white and has a little sparkle-glow- but not too much. You really want to avoid the ‘over-glow’ that is very visible and can look as though you are too-shiny, or even oily.
5a) A few contour brushes: You will need a flat edged directional brush that will contour cheeks and jawline, as the flat edges contact the skin surface and give control. This main brush should be fairly firm for control.
b)A good highlighting brush is a fan brush that will lightly fluff highlighter onto forehead planes, tops of cheekbones, etc. However, soft, fluff brushes will do too.
c)A small, angled or a small, firm-haired, eyeshadow sized brush for smaller places like nose and eyes.
d) A dome ended brush that will softly blend everything, if needed.
Face contouring with powder starts with having the right contour shades. As mentioned before, a kit with several shades is the best.Mainly, for light contouring one to two shades darker than your natural skin tone will suffice so that those contour lines are not too noticeable. If you have a lighter and a darker one, use the darker one only for emphasis, if need be.
It is of prime importance that your contour powders are matte and have no sparkle to them and that the shades are not either too yellow or too pink. Take the time to check and double check for colour. If there’s a tester around- try it and take your time. Also, ask the cosmetic associate, for help.
Start with a clean, moisturized face.You may want to apply your eye makeup first so that any residue from mascara, eyeshadows, etc. can be brushed away with the under-eye highlight colour. This gives a clean, professional finish.Apply your powder foundation or your translucent powder to your face and blend well, Now you have the powder-based canvas for your light contouring, to come.
Common sense comes in to play quite a bit for successful contouring. The trick is to realize that if that area is okay- don’t fix it! Just carry on with general contouring on those natural contour areas.
Highlighting- Accentuate the positive
Common sense comes in to play quite a bit for successful contouring and highlighting. The trick is to realize that if that area is okay- don’t fix it!
Natural areas to highlight regardless of your face shape.
- Under the eyes in a sideways triangle that narrows to a soft wide line at the TOP of the cheekbones. Then blend it well into the hairline.This will show on the frontal planes of your cheeks.
- In a fan shape at the top of the nose that fans out onto the forehead.
- At the end and ball of your chin, if your chin is recessive or you have a squarish face with no obvious chin.
- The hairline and right down into your forehead,if you have a small forehead. Blend and meet that fan shape that is mentioned above.
- The end of your nose, if you feel that your nose is short for your face. Also you can lightly put some highlighter down the centre of your nose, if you feel it is too narrow.
Contouring – Sculpt plus minimize the negative
Just as in the art of highlighting, correct contouring requires common sense. If it’s already too small, narrow or short DO NOT use contour on it. Adding contour will only make it recede even more.
Natural areas to contour regardless of your face shape
- Just under your cheekbones, in the hollow that forms when you purse your mouth. The shape should be like a crescent moon on its back. Use the brush in an upward motion to get right under and into that natural hollow that forms. The contour powder should be brought right back into the hairline for proper blending.
- If your forehead is a normal size for your face you can still contour a bit around the hairline. This adds a bit of warmth and shapeliness to the forehead.
- You may lightly brush a little powder contour to your jawline to emphasize the jaw bone, but DO NOT do this if you already have a square and prominent jaw bone.
- You may also brush a little powder contour on the sides of your nose and blend well to make your nose slightly more refined. But if your nose is already narrow DO NOT.
Contouring will either add shadow and contour to an area, or will minimize it and make it recede. So once you’ve added the natural contouring above you may want to add a bit more in areas for correction.
- If you have a large forehead, you can add more contour than the amount specified above. You can bring it down a little further but still have the fan highlighting at the top and out to each side of the nose area, into the forehead, as mentioned above.
- More mature people, who have a double or sagging chin may want to fluff a little contour on the neck area to make it less noticeable. In this case they should lightly run it over the jawline as well to make a more prominent line.
- If your face is round or chubby you can run a little contour all along, on either side of your face, but lightly, and be sure to blend well.
- Contour a little at the sides of the nose, if you feel your nose is too wide. A little at the tip will shorten it.
The Finish Line
Face contouring with powders is the lighter, more natural way to go. Once you’re done, make sure everything is BLENDED WELL. Keep going over it with your blending brush, if you feel it is too noticeable. You may add a touch of powder foundation over it all to help blend it and smooth out the edges.
Go ahead now and add a little blush- which will overlap a little between the hollow-of-the-cheek contour and the highlight that meets there. Swab on some pretty lipstick and you’re ready to go.
This look is fabulous for- whenever—but is wonderful for any photography- plus your selfies will never have it so good!