Makeup Artists have often used their tricks of the trade to create a carefully sculpted face but once Kim Kardashian put photographs of her extreme contouring process on her Instagram account, contouring and highlighting really hit the mainstream.
Highlighting is the art of using light coloured products to enhance the areas of your face you want to bring to the fore and contouring uses darker shades to add shadows to areas of the face you wish to minimise.
Using a combination of both can enhance bone structure and can alter the appearance of a face shape if done correctly.
There are two methods, the first is to apply your contouring and highlighting under your foundation (for this method you will want cream products if you are using a cream foundation) and then blend in as you apply your foundation.
The second method is to add your contouring and highlighting after your foundation. Doing the latter can create a more dramatic effect, more suitable for a night out unless you go more lightly with your products. When it comes to which products to use it’s always useful to have a powder duo such as Daniel Sandler’s Sculpt and Slim which contains both a matte contouring powder and a subtle shimmer highlighter.
If you’d prefer to use cream products, look for a concealer or foundation two shades lighter than your skin tone for highlighting and a concealer or foundation two shades darker than your skin tone to contour.
Contours: To contour you will want to apply your product under your cheek bone, in the hollow. If you have a forehead that you’d like to appear smaller, add some product along your hairline and down to your temples, and add some along your jaw line. Finally contour down either side of your nose, from the eyebrows to the tip of your nose.
Highlights: Highlight under your eyes and along your cheekbones, your chin, between your eyebrows and up onto your forehead and right down the centre of your nose. Then it’s just a case of blending. If you are opting to apply the products under your foundation, you can blend it as you apply your foundation. If you are applying on top of your foundation, take extra care to blend ensuring you haven’t got stripes of colour on your face.
As contouring and highlighting can leave you with several layers of product, it’s important to finish up with a good dusting of setting powder, such as NYX HD Studio Finishing Powder. This will set your products and help to keep any shine at bay. If you’ve opted to go with cream products you can, as a final step, go over all your highlights and contours with powder contouring and highlighting products to really enhance your newly sculpted face. It’s a fantastic technique and very useful for creating cheek bones if you feel you have none!