Saturday, 13 October 2012

How To | Contour

Hey Everyone!

I think that if you're even slightly interested in makeup, you will be familiar with the concept of contour. Just in case you have stumbled across this post via the realms of the interweb and have no clue what I'm talking about, contour is the art of shading and highlighting your face to make it appear slimmer/ more defined. Think Kim Kardashian's seemingly natural sculpted cheekbones and radiance. 

In regards to my makeup, I like to focus on one technique to master at a time. First it was buffing foundation for a flawless finish. Then it was steady-handed liquid eyeliner. Recently  it has been contour and let me tell you- its been the most difficult to master.

I think its easiest to break it down into 4 parts:


Theory
The essential principle of contour is to darken certain parts of your face to take them back and highlight others to bring them forward. You want to exaggerate the natural shadows your face by applying a dark matte powder and draw attention to parts of your face which are not oily and that could do with an extra glow.

What not to use
I tried tiredlessly for months to make contour work with numerous shimmery bronzers and powder brushes.  It doesn't work. I'm not usually one to believe in the 'tools over technique' concept but for this I think tools are essential.

What to use
The essentials are a matte bronzer and a small or angled contour brush. Although I have seen a lot of people contouring with NARS Laguna and a higher end brush, some of us simply cannot afford that- so my essentials for contouring are ELF Blushing Bronzing and Blending Brush and Rimmel Bronzing Compact Powder in Medium Matte. Highlighter doesn't pose as much of a problem so pretty much choose whatever one takes your fancy. I use MUA eyeshadow trio in Pink Sorbet- which technically isn't even a highlight- but it works for me.

Technique
Apply bronzing powder in light sweeping motions into the hollows of your cheekbones and up into your temples and hairline then down into your jaw. Then (using the same brush if you wish) apply your highlighter into a triangle shape on your temples.

I think contour gives a very dramatic look and isn't one which I wear everyday, but I think its beautiful for every now and again.

I hope this helped in some way- give it a go and let me know how you get on! As for me, I think my next makeup conquest will be perfecting how to do brows. 

Do you contour? What are your essential products?


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