A Beginner’s Guide to Contouring

This one is for my beginners! I’m breaking down the most popular topic in makeup that people ask for help on: contouring. I want this to be as easy as possible for you, so I’m not giving you “textbook” like tips but ways that I personally have found over the years to make contouring a bit more easier.

Let’s begin.

First things first. You need to have some sort of an idea of your undertone. Like I said, I’m keeping this as easy as possible so I want you to do to answer this question:

When you tan, do you burn or actually tan?

Tan – warm

Burn – cool

Look at the veins in your hands/wrists; are they more blue or green?

Green – warm

Blue – cool 

These are very basic ways to help find your undertone. If this doesn’t help, just take a quick trip to your nearest makeup counter and they will help you!

Next, it’s time to choose a perfect contour shade. A lot of times I will just use a bronzer to add dimension to my face (do not use this ALL over your face, lawd help me) and to add a bit of glow.
If you’re all about the full face beat and want that face chiseled like nobody’s business then after you figure out what undertone you are, this will help you in choosing your contour shade. Your contour shade must compliment your undertone or it will appear “muddy” looking on your face. Not cute. If the shade appears more cool or looks a bit blue or grey this will be the shade you choose if you determined you’re cool toned. If the shade that is more warm and looks more red or even orange-ish, that’s for my warm toned folks. Confused yet?


Do you see the red and orange-ish-nish of these shades? They just feel warm you know what I mean? Don’t overthink the warm and cool thing. You got this girl! P.s. this particular palette isn’t something I’d recommend for beginners or even just one person. This was just for more for your reference. Great product just meant for artists and multiple people!

Ok, take a breath. We’re getting to the fun part. So at this point, you know you’re undertone, you’ve got your foundation on and you have probably set your face with a powder. Now we begin.


Take whatever brush you’re using and hold the end of that brush at the top of the tip of your ear. (Refer to the photo below) This is the start of where your main contour should be. Also, think of the shape of the number 3. This is your reference for how you’re going to apply the contour around your face for it to look natural.

Slap on the goods:

Dip your brush into your color. I recommend using a brush that has a proper shape for easily defining your cheekbones and temples. I’ll have a pic posted of my favorite brushes to contour with down below. To avoid looking absolutely ridiculous, slowly build up the color on your face instead of packing on too much color on your brush and setting yourself up for a disaster.

Here’s a quick video showing simple steps to contour that face hunty! 

What does contouring do?:

The purpose of contouring is to give the illusion that you’re face is a bit thinner than it really is. It’s also a way to add shape and structure to your face so that is doesn’t look “flat” I personally only hardcore contour when I’m feeling frisky so I stick with a good bronzer and apply the same techniques as above. Either is fine! I recommend (for beginners) to just use a nice bronzer to start. 

Some of my favorite brushes for contouring/bronzing:


I hope that these steps can help you with learning to contour and framing your face. If you ever have more questions about makeup, please send me an email and I’d be happy to help! Happy contouring! 

Whit x


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