How To: Step-by-Step Contour & Highlight

Contouring and highlighting is undoubtedly the most strategic part of every makeup routine because of the flawless sculpted definition it provides the face when done correctly. Contouring makes certain features appear smaller, while highlighting emphasizes your most desirable features. Both processes balance each other, which is why they are a force to be reckoned with when used together. It can be rather intimidating when looking at the prep strokes for contouring and highlighting, but it is actually easier than it seems

What You’ll Need: A makeup brush, beauty blender, concealer/powder in a color one or two shades lighter than your skin tone, concealer/powder in a color one or two shades darker than your skin tone. I recommend using L.A. Girl HD Pro Concealer.

 

Step 1: Highlight

After applying your foundation, grab the lighter concealer/powder to begin highlighting the face. Begin with under your eyes and draw either two upside down triangles or thick strips similar to the lines under a football player’s eyes. To highlight the nose and lower forehead, form a “T” by drawing a thick line above your eyebrows and down the middle of your nose. The last area you want to highlight is under your chin by drawing and filling in a circle with your concealer/powder.

 

Step 2: Contour

Now it’s time to use the darker concealer/powder to contour. Start by drawing two more football lines angled along your hairline to make the forehead appear shorter. Then to sculpt the nose, draw two thin lines on the sides of it. The last place you want to contour is your cheeks and that is done by sucking in your cheeks and drawing a thick line in the cheek indentions and a line under the cheek near the jawline.

 

Step 3: Dab & Stiffle

Wet your beauty blender and then squeeze the excess water out of it in order to reduce streaks in your makeup. Then, dab and stipple the pre-drawn areas on your highlight and contour lines with the beauty blender until the concealer/powder is blending with your foundation. Dabbing is a light tap and stippling is a light tap combined with a slight pressure onto your face. Doing both allows the concealer to infiltrate the areas you may have missed which results in a more even and flawless finish.

 

Step 4: Ultimate Blending

This is the most important step and it must not be rushed through. If you do not take the proper time to ultimately blend the highlight and contour then it could cause your face to look blotchy. Take your brush, blend in each line with upward strokes, and set your makeup with a finishing powder. You are now officially highlighted and contoured to the gods!

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