Highlighting and contouring ones face has been a popular trend in recent times. Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner have helped it spread amongst the beauty enthusiasts out there.
The thing is, highlighting and contouring is best suited for photo shoots and special occasions as it adds extra shine and dimension to your face–and as you’ve guessed it, prom is the perfect occasion to highlight and contour your face.
So if you want to make your face look more contoured, and bring out your best features, here are some expert tips to make it right.
No 1: Choose a cool brown shade that is two tones darker than your skintone
A contouring technique always consists of a contouring shade and a highlight shade.
A contouring shade will add natural creases and shadows in the lines of your face you want to define.
Ideally and for more natural looking results, the shade must be matte and cool-toned brown as warmer hues look more like an unnatural orange bronzer rather than contour.
In regards to the depth of the shade, this should be two shades darker than your natural skin tone. Anything lighter or darker than that won’t show up well in your prom pictures.
No 2: Choose a highlight shade according your skin undertones
The highlight shade will be used to add more brightness and shine to your face.
If you don’t want it to clash with your natural skin tone, you should choose a highlight shade based on that.
For example, if you have reddish or pink skin undertones, choose a shade with pink, purple, or iridescent blue undertones.
On the contrary, if your skin is warm and has yellow undertones, it’s best to go for a highlighter with golden or champagne undertones.
Finally, if you have neutral skin undertones, you can go for any shade you wish as long as you don’t add too many layers.
No 3: Choose a formula according to your skin type
Your skin type also determines the ideal contour/highlight formula you will use.
This is very important as if you do a mistake, you will look like a ghost or an oil slick in your prom pictures.
Oily skinned gals should ideally go for more matte powder formulas that help control excess shine, whereas girls with drier skin types should go for more creamy and moisturizing formulas e.g sticks, liquid highlighters, or creams.
Normal skin types can go for any formula they prefer provided that the blend lines well.
No 4: Use the appropriate tools for every formula
Of course, every formula requires it’s own tools and methods to work.
For example, stick formulas can be applied as they are and blended with fingers, a sponge, or a large foundation brush whereas powder formulas require two face brushes–one thin long brush for the contour shade and one larger blending brush for highlighting and blending all lines together.
If you are using a liquid formula with an applicator brush, use that brush to draw your contouring shade or make small dots along the areas you wish to define and then blend with your fingers.
If your highlight shade also comes with an applicator brush do the same as well or take a small thin brush to draw your contouring line and then blend with fingers and a sponge.
No 5: Contour and define the lines around and below your main features and highlight the center parts of your face
The basic contour/highlight technique that works for most face shapes is contouring the lines that define your face shape, e.g chin, temples, the lines below the cheeks and your nose sides and highlight the central parts of your face e.g your inner cheeks, chin, and forehead.
Ideally, if you want to slim down a feature, you apply thin contour lines just beneath it and if you want to bring a feature forward e.g your cheeks or the central part of your face, you highlight it.
No 6: Set with powder and test the result on cam
So after you finish highlighting and contouring your face, if you don’t want to melt as you dance and take pictures, the main thing you should do is to set it with powder.
Compact matte powders protect you the most from oiliness but translucent powders offer a more natural looking results that translates better in pictures.
You can keep your powder in your bag for touch-ups throughout prom in case your makeup starts to melt.
Don’t forget to do crash tests to see how it shows up on cam.
If the result doesn’t appear natural, blend your lines further with a sponge or brush and use some tissue to absorb excess oil and product.
That should do the trick.