The No-Fuss Guide To Contouring!


Contouring is actually really easy, it can work to give you a bronzed look and stop you looking washed out on a particularly dreary morning, and it doesn’t take too long either once you’ve mastered the technique. The problem is, it can seem like quite a technical technique, and when it’s done wrong it can seem overdone. If you’re intimidated by contouring, don’t worry – here’s a no fuss guide we can all use!

You’ll need three contouring shades. One two shades darker than your skin tone, one slightly darker than your skin tone, and a highlighting color two shades lighter than your skin tone. For a creamy, blendable contour you need to try Anastacia Beverly Hills Contouring Kit, and if you like more of a defined look, definitely try Makeup Forever’s Pro Sculpting Palette, it’s unassuming but it’s really amazing – and the highlight that comes with it is phenomenal.

If you look on the internet there are an abundance of guides, each telling you a different shape to follow. Although it all depends on the shape of your face, there are some universal areas that you can contour.

Suck your cheeks in and follow the line from the top of your ear to just before the corner of your mouth, either side of your chin and either side of your temple will also work well for any face shape.

You can also contour your nose, using a very small brush and applying products in a straight line down either side, just make sure it’s blended well after application.

Now you need to decide what technique you want to use to apply it. You can apply your foundation and add contour and highlight over the top of it, blending with a large brush, or you can do highlight and contour first and blend as you add your foundation with a beauty blender. Part of finding out what you prefer is just trying things out. 


Okay, so you want to look natural – many of the YouTube tutorials capitalize on that ‘makeup for photography’ look and can leave you looking orange in places in real life. Most of the celebrities you see have a lot of contour applied to their face which looks great under the harsh lights they’re stood under being photographed, but for us civilians keeping it simple is best. Invest in a beauty blender, apply a little beauty oil on it and dab at your contour lines (no matter how harsh you think they look) and just like magic it’ll all come together!

If you want to create collar bones or cleavage, a quick application of contour and highlighter blended well will do the trick. Often the skin on our face can be a different shade entirely from your neck or chest so be wary of making it look too orange or pinkish in those areas!

I hope you found these tips easy to follow! Let us know if you’ve been converted to contouring or if you have any other tricks and tips to simplify the application and make it less intimidating to beginners! 

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Managing Editor

Beth is the Managing Editor of CGD. She is a graduate of the Penguin Writer's Academy, has published a short story and loves to read creative writing manuals in her spare time.

  • Tessa

    Contouring is fun! If you haven’t tried it, I suggest you to do it a few times. It’s fun to see how you can play with your features and sometimes have a different face (positively ofcourse, not in a way you wouldn’t recognise yourself anymore :p ). I like shaping my face with my regular foundation, a foundation that is two shades darker and a highlighting product. My favourite is the Skin Foundation Stick by Bobbi Brown , just so easy to use!

    Happy Sunday!

  • Lauren

    I like to use a mix of Sleek Makeup’s contour and Rimmel Creamy Powder as it has a grey base which is great for a natural look!

    Lauren x
    Britton Loves | Lifestyle Food Fashion Beauty –

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