How to Contour & Highlight

There are several face shapes out there and it can be a little tricky determining which group we belong to. Don’t worry too much about it because there are a lot of varieties to these shapes. You can be a mix of round and heart-shaped, or a square and a diamond.

You might be wondering why it’s so important to identify our face shape. Well, this can be very helpful when it comes to doing makeup. It allows us to emphasize our best features, and correct our imperfections. I don’t agree with the term imperfection however, because I believe that everyone has their own individuality. Just because it makes you look or seem different, it doesn’t mean it’s unattractive.

Before thinking too much about it, let’s begin with identifying the most common face shapes. Below, you will find an illustration of the different face shapes more common to women.



I have a round face. I don’t have angles which means I have to do extra contour and highlighting since I love creating cheekbones. It all depends on your preference, you don’t have to follow what I do, I’m simply sharing what I know.

The basic idea is that an OVAL  is the IDEAL face shape. It doesn’t mean it’s the most beautiful, or perfect shape, it’s just the standard. What does this imply? For all other shapes, we contour and highlight to achieve an illusion of an oval face shape.

CONTOURING is making a part of our face or body smaller and deeper.

HIGHLIGHTING is making a feature stand out or be prominent.

These are some tips I would like to share when it comes to contour and highlighting:

  • Use matte powders.
  • Choose contour and highlight mediums that match your skin tone.
  • Use the appropriate brush.
  • Work little by little and build up the color.
  • Blend everything together and make sure there are no harsh lines.
  • Contour and highlight areas that need it. If it doesn’t need any touch up, then let it be.
  • For every day makeup, it’s up to you if you want to contour and highlight. just make sure you don’t go overboard. It might look a little too much or even muddy if you’re not careful.
  • These techniques photograph really well because it enhances the different features of the face.
  • Familiarize yourself with facial features to determine what contour and highlighting skills would best suit you or other people.

Those are the tips I take note of when doing this. I hope they have been helpful. If you wish to see a demonstration of how contour and highlighting works, you cna check out my video tutorial here:


Thank you so much for reading and let me know if you have any tips to add! Share it to those who want to learn about contour and highlighting too.

  1. Charlottediso (Reply) on Tuesday 12, 2012

    helpful!! Thank you very much for the help 🙂

  2. Shanelle (Reply) on Tuesday 12, 2012

    nice earings

  3. Sherlina Shay (Reply) on Tuesday 12, 2012

    I shall take the liberty to bookmark this. :)) Im a noob in makeup, so this post is super helpful. Thank you so much!!!! 

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