How To Apply Contour Makeup

Our professional makeup artists who take part in our Makeover photoshoots are often asked by clients for tips and tricks used in makeup application, so we have put together some interesting content to walk you through the process. Please feel free to ask any questions (below in the comments) you may have that are left unanswered and we’ll try to give you the answers you are look for.

Leah Richardson who was the makeup artist in the video above, has outlined, each stage of the process below.

contouring makeup illustration

Contouring Makeup Tips

1. Foundation

Start central and work your way outwards to the rest of the face. Apply a layer of foundation then buff into the skin using a circular motion.

2. Cheeks

Using a medium shade powder, work from the temple downwards onto the bottom of the cheekbone. Using a darker powder, then work underneath the cheekbone, creating shadow to structure the face.

3. Temple & Head

Again using the darker powder, work the product into the temple area thinning the face. Work the product into the hairline focusing on the outsides of the head to thin the face or across the top of the head to shorten the face.

4. Jaw line

Contouring the jaw gives the impression of a thinner neck and stronger jaw line. Contour from the ear, onto and below the jaw line on the neck. If you want to lesser the appearance of the jaw, apply the product more on the face near the jaw to create depth, rather than under the jaw to create shadow. Contouring the chin frames the face and can also shorten the face if applied more to the face than the jaw/neck line.

5. Eye socket

Using a brown pigment, work the product into the socket line in circular motions. This will give a soft blend to the product whilst the colour and placement will deepen the socket line of the eye.

6. Highlighting

Apply highlights where wanted or necessary on the face. Applying under the brow further emphasises the socket line. Highlighting the bridge of the nose brings it forward therefor thinning the nose. Highlighting on top of the brow emphasises the brow bone. Highlighting on and above the cheekbone brings the cheekbone forward and deepens the contour.

Blend the products together using a powder brush making it appear more natural and ensuring there are no visible lines between products.

contouring makeup
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About Mike Turner

Mike Turner is a professional photographer located on Wigan, Warrington border Greater Manchester specialising in social photography. Portraits, Makeovers and Commercial photography make up the bulk of Mike's work both at this studio and on location

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