I used to find the thought of contouring my face very intimidating. I’ve always felt like I was fairly capable when it came to applying makeup but contouring was a whole new ball game. I tried several different powder palettes with no success. It wasn’t until I went to a Maskcara “how to” class at a local boutique that I finally got the hang of it.
There are tons of different products you can use to contour and highlight your face. I, personally, have found the Maskcara products to be the easiest to use as well as looking great. They are a direct sales company but I do NOT sell the products. This tutorial will take you step by step on contouring, highlighting, and baking. I’ve included two videos below as well. The first is an in depth look at a detailed way to contour a round face shape. The second is a simpler universal way to contour that just provides some extra definition to your face. In the paragraphs below I’ve outlined the steps of the first video!
I always start with a good base primer. I prefer Tarte’s Base Tape or Benefit Cosmetic’s Porefessional Face Primer. Both are great and Benefit’s really reduces the size of your pores which I love.
Next, I use a base foundation. In the summer I typically skip this step but it’s all depends on your personal preference. If you need extra coverage I would use a base foundation. In this video I used Marc Jacobs Shameless foundation in shade Medium Y390. I really like this foundation, the consistency and coverage is perfect. Another foundation I use a lot is Clinique Super-balanced N7. To find your perfect foundation shade I recommend always trying the color on your neck, not your hand. your hands and arms are typically darker than your face. Always blend your foundation in thoroughly down your neck and into your hairline so you don’t suffer from makeup lines.
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Concealer is very important. It helps to cover any unwanted spots and for me personally it brightens up the dark circles under my eyes! It’s important to make sure your concealer is 1-2 shades lighter than your foundation. You’ll be covering up the concealer and you want to make sure that it doesn’t interfere with your foundation shade. My favorite concealer is Tarte’s Shape Tape. It’s got a great coverage and will wipe out pretty much any blemish on your face. However, I’m almost out, so sad! So for this video I used Sistar’s It’s U HD Concealer. I really liked this one as well, it wasn’t too thick and provided good coverage. I usually use my concealer under my eyes, around my mouth and down the middle of my nose. Once applied you can use your finger, blender, or a brush to gently blend in the concealer.
For the highlight I used the Amber highlight from Maskcara. This can get a little confusing because I also call the “illuminator” highlighter. To clarify the highlight is the lightest shade on your contour palette. Whichever product you decide to use should map out which product is the highlighter. To create more definition for your rounder face you create a V shape below your eyes. Start along the top of your cheek bone, in front of your hair line and continue down and stop about half an inch from your nose. Create a straight vertical line from below the inner corner of your eye and connect it to the end of the first line. This creates a V shape below your eyes. Next, place a V in the middle of the bottom of your chin and carry the sides of the V up to connect to the bottom of the other V’s. In the middle of your forehead create 3 lines, basically another wide V with a line straight up the middle.
The contour will be the darkest color of the set you’re using. The point of contour is to define certain areas and shrink others. For example, if you have a larger forehead using more contour on the top and sides will make it look smaller. I am using the Indigo Contour from Maskcara. In the first video I’m using a short, small brush to make dotted lines and in the second video I’m using the 30 sec HAC brush to make broad lines. Take the contour in the middle of your cheek right below your cheek bone in a line starting at your hairline and go down about half an inch away from your mouth. Carry that same line straight down either side of your mouth to your jawline. From here, outline your jawline from your ear to the bottom of the line you just created. I also outline the bottom of my chin. For my nose I draw a straight line down either side and complete it with a V on the tip of my nose. On your forehead add a contour line on both sides leaving a small gap in the middle.
Once all your lines are made blend them into your face with a beauty blender or brush. I prefer the blender from Maskacara. If using a blender dampen it slightly before blending. For the nose area I find it’s easier to just use my finger to blend in the makeup.
Just like with all aspects of makeup there are several ways to “bake your face”. Baking is taking a translucent powder and packing in onto all the areas of your face that are highlighted. You can use a loose translucent powder for this. If you want it extra baked you can wet your makeup sponge or brush slightly prior to dipping it into the powder. I did not do that in the video below, but I probably should have! I dipped my makeup brush into my translucent powder and applied a generous amount under my eyes and below my contour lines on my cheeks. You usually want this to set at least 10 minutes before lightly dusting away all the excess.
Once you have all the excess powder removed it’s time for blush! I used the Plum blush from Maskcara in the video below. I usually smile so my cheeks are easier to access. This blush is a cream so I use my finger to apply a small dot on my cheeks and I blend it in an upward motion along the top of my cheek bone towards my hair.
I always use a powder after everything is finished. This helps create a cohesive look as well as toning down my blush slightly. I usually use Physicians Formula or the Mannakadar Polish as I used in the video. I lightly dust the powder all over my face and neck. A large fluffy brush is best for this type of application.
Last for the Illuminator/ highlighter! This is probably my favorite step. This is the shimmer that is added to the top of your cheekbones, middle of your nose, the crown of your lip, and I like to dust it under my eyebrows as well. It creates a gorgeous finished look. I always make sure I use a setting spray as well. My summer go-to is Coola SPF Setting Spray and my winter go-to is Urban Decay’s All-Nighter Setting Spray.
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I hope you found this super helpful! I’ve linked most of the products used either in the body of the post (they’re in bold) or they’re listed below. Please subscribe to my email list to get exclusive access to new blog posts and tips! I’d love to hear from you if you have any questions or if there’s anything you’d like to see me try out makeup wise!
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I love this! I always feel like I have a beard when I try to contour 🙄. What a helpful blog!