Make-up trends come and go, but some things stick around because they work. Contouring is back in the spotlight because the current looks are quite sculptural. Kim Kardashian kick started this latest round of shadow play, but it’s a trick make-up artists have always used.
There seems to be something ingrained into humans to be attracted to almond shaped faces. Even babies linger longer looking at these ideal face shapes! The fun part is that it’s easy to increase our almondness with a bit of highlighting and contouring. I stared goggle-eyed as my make-up artistry teacher changed one girl’s face shape with a flick here and there, as if shaving the cute button face into a tapered almond.
How to contour like a pro
First, apply a base foundation or powder all over your face. Then dust contour powder in a wedge shape under the cheekbones. The thick edge of the wedge should start at the ear and taper out under the apple or middle of the cheek.
If you have a high brow, a circle of contouring powder along the hairline will create illusion of a smaller brow.
Highlight the cheekbone by dusting cornstarch in a wedge-shape along the top of the cheekbone, again with the wide edge at the hairline and thinning out at the apple (it can be easier to do this with an eye makeup brush at first). Depending on the look you’re going for you can then apply a dusting of blusher to the apples of the cheek.
How to make Homemade Contouring Powder
This is one of the easiest beauty recipes in the world, it’s basically about mixing cocoa powder and cornstarch together to suit your skin coloring and the amount of each will depend on your skin tone. This means the recipe is only a guide. If you’re fair you will need more cornstarch. Other skin tones may not need any cornstarch. The essential oil thickens the powder and helps with the glide factor.
- 1 tablespoon cacao or cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 8 drops orange, lavender or rosemary essential oil
- Mix the powders together and test on your skin (over the foundation or face powder you usually wear). Add more cacao or cornstarch as needed.
- Once you're happy with the color, mix in the essential oil and store the contour powder in a sterile or very clean jar and keep dry.
What are the make up tricks you use all the time? I’d love to hear in the comments below.