February 16, 2016
When it comes to contouring, it can get real crazy. Case in point:
This is known as “clown contouring”, first started by beauty vlogger BellaDeLune (the one in the above Instagram video). She might have first put this out there to get back against her haters who called her a clown because of the makeup she wore, but it soon took Instagram by storm – people actually began to put on this crazy amount of makeup on their faces, to achieve a Kim Kardashian-level contour.
It might all have started from Kim K, but contouring became a serious trend in the past couple of years, and we couldn’t seem to get away with scrolling past a contouring selfie on Instagram, or a video tutorial on YouTube. But contouring might get kind of crazy on the Internet – it’s just not practical to put that much makeup on your face each time you want to add some extra definition to your facial contours – but we like to take these posts as just a little occasional inspiration for picking up our oft-neglected bronzer and highlighter.
Don’t be scared off by these clown contouring examples, though. We promise it doesn’t have to be a requisite skill to working some contouring into your daily makeup routine. Whether you’re a complete newbie, taking your first tentative step into the world of bronzers and highlighters, or one of these Instagram experts who already has clown contouring down pat, we have product recommendations for all skill levels. Time to make those cheekbones pop, girl.
Skill level: So what’s the difference between bronzer and highlighter? #clueless
NYX Sculpt & Highlight Face Duo
Simple: The sculpting shade is the darker one, and you highlight with the lighter one. And they’ve already matched both shades for you, so you just have to choose from one of the three combinations based on your skin tone. Just swipe the respective colours on with the doe foot applicator, and use fingers to blend.
NUDESTIX Sculpting Pencil
If you prefer a less liquid formula, NUDESTIX’s double-ended contouring pencils are also pretty foolproof. These pencils still go on creamy, and have a matte finish – just draw onto the face, then use your fingers to smudge.
Skill level: I’m no Kim K, but I know my way around a contouring brush… mostly.
M.A.C Zac Posen Powder Blush (Duo) and 168 Large Angle Contour Brush
$52 and $69, M.A.C Sephora ION, Ngee Ann City, Robinsons the Heeren and TANGS at Tang Plaza from February 25
The darker shade of the blush duo is a matte natural brown that you can brush under the cheekbones and the jawline; after, the pearlised pink coral can go on the cheeks. Use an angled brush like this one to achieve a natural finish.
Tom Ford Shade and Illuminate in SS16
$108, Tom Ford counters
This limited edition shade features a shading colour called “Lavish Pink”, with pink undertones to add some extra luminescence to the skin. The formula is super sheer, so you need to know how to layer it if you want more obvious definition; but put it on the right spots, and your skin will catch the light in all the correct places.
Skill level: Please, I can do a whole clown contouring tutorial.
MAKE UP FOR EVER Pro Sculpting Palette
This one is definitely professional level – you’ll need to know what you’re doing to navigate the four shades here. There’s one for highlighting, one for contouring, one for shimmer and one for colour – MAKE UP FOR EVER recommends using their #106 and #408 brushes.
Tarte Tarteist Contour Palette
$69, Sephora from 3 March
Okay, this palette takes it up a notch – six colours which the brand promises will make you lose “5 pounds in 5 minutes”. It helps that the shades are numbered, plus there’s a visual guide included to teach you how to use it. Still, we wouldn’t recommend using this unless you’re sure about where you’re putting all these colours, because it sure requires some skilful blending.
Main image: Hood By Air Spring/Summer 2016, courtesy M.A.C.