How To Contour And Highlight Your Face

thP8WZ13RD   The other day I received a request to do a post on face contouring – Ask and ye shall receive. This one is for you, Jody Ledesma! 😉

Contouring, a technique previously reserved for the professionals, is now becoming part of many girls’ daily routine. Soooo what is it, exactly? Contouring is giving shape to an area of the face and enhancing the facial structure through makeup. It is not supposed to be noticeable – just a subtle definition. Again, it is a “subtle” definition.

Now before we get into the How, we need to get into what will be needed.

Brushes matter – a lot: To sculpt and shape your face you must use the right tools and quality matters. You will need one for highlighting and one for contouring.

  •  Angled, blusher brush
  • (optional) Smaller, fluffy eyeshadow brush, for more precision – Use a very small brush to shade down each side of the nose and then blend down and apply a highlight down the center to soften the contour.
  • Regular foundation brush or a damp egg sponge

You’ll also need:

  • Liquid foundation in your normal shade. (if first applying foundation all over)
  • Concealer, foundation, or powder in a slightly darker color than your skin.
  • Blush
  • Foundation that is one shade lighter than your face. This is your highlighter. You have a few options here – Use a liquid foundation, pressed powder or highlighting product. Just remember it must be lighter than your face. These are for the areas that you want to make pop!

For contouring I prefer to use a matte color  – Some people like to use a bronzer, but I am against that unless you have tanned skin. Avoid shimmery products. Contours are meant to be matte, while highlight is meant to have shimmer. Texture is key. If you’re using powders to contour, you’ll get a more matte finish. If you use creams, the result will be more dewy.” It’s best for beginners to start with creamy products, since they’re easy to blend and build. You need to find something that creates the illusion of an actual shadow, which typically has tones of beige, brown, taupe, and grey. For ultra-light skin tones try using a darker pressed-powder.

Now on to the technique

Matte color

  • Diagonally under your cheekbones or parallel to your jaw line. This will really make your cheekbones pop.
  • On the sides of your nose from the bridge straight down. This will make your nose appear longer and thinner. Blending here is key.
  • On your jaw line and under your chin, which will make your round face look more elongated, and who doesn’t want that?


  • This should go one level above where you applied the matte color or bronzer on your cheeks, so parallel to your jaw line. This will really make the apples of your cheeks stand out.

HIGHLIGHTER: Highlighters are every makeup artist’s secret trick.

  • Add a dab to the bottom and top portion of your lips to make their shape more prominent.
  • Cover a small bump on top of your nose.
  • Apply to your brow bones.
  • Make your cheekbones stand out even more by adding highlighter above your blush. For extra glow, add a touch to the apples of your cheeks over your blush.

*I love a highlight in the Cupid’s Bow too as it creates the illusion of a fuller top lip and thus a fuller pout.

*Dark colors shade and make areas recede, for instance the hollows of the cheek, temples, under chin, sides of nose.

*Light colors highlight and make things come forward – the apples of the cheek, under the eye, the brow bone and middle of the chin.

*Shimmer and pearlized powders make great highlighters.


For quality brushes, I recommended Younique brushes. Younique brushes are high quality, made with real goat, capra, and pony hair. All Younique makeup brushes have an inner high-quality copper ferrule (will not rust), are made to last a lifetime, and are cruelty free.

Younique concealers –  mineral-based a provide excellent, flawless coverage.

Younique’s BB Flawless Complexion Enhancer – All-in-one moisturizer, treatment and foundation. A perfect base for the powder concealers.

Touch Pressed Powder Foundation by Younique – Mineral-pressed powder is an ultra-fine, long wearing and breathable foundation that provides a beautiful, even finish.

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