Contour, contour, contour!
It’s a word we hear often relating to makeup procedures, but what exactly is contouring? Contouring is a makeup technique that uses cosmetics to define, enhance and sculpt the structure of the face, or other body parts, such as the breasts.
The definition of contouring as a noun: An outline, especially one representing or bounding the shape or form of something.
The definition of contouring as a verb: To mold into a specific shape, typically one designed to fit into something else. Mark (a map or a diagram) with contour lines.

Contouring Fun Fact: Contouring is usually produced by placing a warm or cool toned color that is one or two shades darker than your skin color in areas such as the hollows of the cheeks, on the side of the nose, and on the temples, to give a shadow and slimming effect. Contouring can be complemented with a highlighter that is one or two shades lighter than your skin color on areas of the face that are more prominent, such as on the apples on the cheeks and the tip of the nose or the t-zone.
In the 16th century, contouring started with stage actors. In Elizabethan England, stage actors would apply chalk and soot to their faces to help audience members read their facial expressions.
Express and sculpt your face to perfection when you follow perfect contouring directions!

How to Perform Flawless Contouring Fast and Easy:

  1. Makeup Products Needed:  Either your normal powder or cream base foundation and two foundation sticks (one stick should be one or two shades darker than you skin tone; one stick should be one or two shades lighter than your skin tone).
  2. Apply your base foundation to even out your skin.
  3. Map Your Face: Using the darker foundation stick, trace your temples. Bring out your cheekbones by finding the hollow part, by placing your fingers on the sides of your face, and where you feel the dip underneath the cheekbone, place the foundation pigment just above this area. With the nose, go a bit narrower at the tip, or you can carry the foundation stick into the brow to add length or width.
  4. Blend, Blend, Blend: Take a damp beauty blender and tap over the area of the contour color, merging it into your base foundation. Tap in small, circular motions, using the bigger, rounded end of the beauty blender.
  5. Get Lit: Concentrate the lighter foundation stick underneath your eyes. You can also add lighter foundation in the center of the forehead, the chin and the bridge of the nose. Blend with a damp beauty blender.
  6. Powder Dust: With a fluffy brush, dust the entire face with loose powder. Translucent powder works best for securing a cream foundation

That’s how you sharpen and sculpt parts of your face: a sure fire win for any shaped face!

Contouring Fun Fact: In the 1920s and 1930s, face contouring could be seen in the film world. Marlene Dietrich would contour her face for her movies. She would accentuate the natural lines of her face with shading and sculpting. In the 1950s, a time of Old Hollywood glamour, actresses such as Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor subtly contoured and shaded their facial features.
How to enhance and sculpt the natural shape of your face!

Contouring Fun Fact: In the 2000s, the practice of “body contouring” – the application of contouring other parts of the body than the face, such as shinbones and breasts – became more widely noticed as a result of the increasing number of images of celebrities appearing in social media.

Contouring Fun Fact: In 1934, makeup artist Max Factor was famous for applying makeup for stage actors. He added shading to the face so that the face wouldn’t appear flat on film. In 1945, he released the first tutorial on how to contour the face, noting various face shapes.
In 1944, Ben Nye, a famous makeup artist, did the makeup for characters in the movies “Gone with the Wind” and “Planet of the Apes”. He then created his own cosmetics line.
Even if you don’t have your own line of makeup, you can highlight and contour your face to professional makeup artist perfection! Sheer sculpting heaven!

Contour the shape of your face to a sculpting level that will take first place!
“Your face is absolutely gorgeous: your prominent nose and your high cheekbones!”
“Yes, put a jeweled crown on your head and you should be sitting on a throne!”
“Are your high cheekbones natural or did you contour your face quite well?”
“A glamour girl never shares her true beauty secrets…she’ll never kiss and tell.”
“Whether your sculpted face is natural or you used contouring help…divine!”
“The best part of it all is that this ideally sculpted face is one-hundred percent all mine!”
Contouring 101: Chiseled cheekbones, an amazing jawline and exquisite facial bone structure! Sculpt your face however you prefer!

Nancy Mangano is an American beauty/fashion/style influencer, fashion journalist, screenwriter and author of the Natalie North murder mystery book series. Visit Nancy on her global online fashion/style/beauty magazine Strutting in Style! at, her Facebook page Nancy Mangano at Twitter @ and her author website


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