Contouring is a makeup technique used to enhance and define facial features. It is a method that uses shading and highlighting techniques to create the appearance of depth and dimension. It can either recede an area on the face or make it stand out.

What do I need to contour?

To contour, you can use a combination of concealer, foundation, bronzer, highlighter, eyeshadow, brow powder, and even highlighter to create the look. However, when contouring make sure you use the same category of product e.g., layer powders with powders, do not layer creams and powders as it can make the makeup look cakey. It is also important to have the correct makeup brushes to achieve the best outcome.

How do I choose the correct contour colour for my skin tone?

Once you have the basics sorted, select a colour to match your skin tone. Although it may seem obvious, often you see people with a foundation line.  One shade does not always suit all skin tones when contouring.


Colour selection guidelines for different skin tones:

If You Have Fair/Light Skin, a taupe contour is best for fair skin. Smooth the edges using a damp beauty blender to ensure a beautiful seamless finish. If You Have Medium/Tan Skin a bronzy contour works best. This allows you to sculpt your features and make them look more sun-kissed. If You Have Dark/Deep Skin a highlighter is recommended to define darker skin tones. Use a coppery-bronze shade that flatters your skin. Highlight the bridge of the nose, cheekbones, and chin.

Contouring Step by Step

In PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP ARTISTRY we have steps to follow to create the perfect contouring effect, let’s look at the steps to follow.


  • Skin preparation:

Cleanse and apply moisturiser. Then apply a primer, this will ensure your makeup lasts throughout the day. Apply a little concealer and foundation to even out your skin tone.

  • To contour:

Apply the darker shade to create shadows underneath your cheekbones. Next, trace the product along the hollows of the face.

  • Highlight:

Use a lighter shade of concealer/highlighter on areas that reflect light naturally. These include the forehead, bridge of the nose, top of cheekbones, cupid’s bow, and around your eyes and brow bone. Apply a concealer slightly lighter than your skin color or use a shimmery concealer, highlighter, illuminator, or eyeshadow.

  • Blush:

Applying blush to the apples of the cheeks is not necessary for contouring, but it can make your makeup look more natural and act as a bridge between your highlight and shadow areas.

  • Blend:

Blend your shadows and highlights with a large, fluffy brush or blending brush until they look natural.

  • Set:

Apply setting powder or spray to achieve a flawless finish.

At Hydro International we offer PROFESSIONAL MAKE-UP ARTISTRY COURSES where you can learn the art of makeup application for different occasions and events. Why wait, start your career in PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP ARTISTRY today!


Open chat
Need help?
Welcome to Hydro International College!

How may we assist you?