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Just about everybody who’s ever tried contouring has some horror story they may inform—from not mixing nicely sufficient so the product continues to be clearly seen in your cheekbones to following the mistaken tutorial so you find yourself trying extra scared than snatched.

For those who’ve all the time been secretly afraid to discover ways to contour after a failed try or from witnessing the endeavors of others, 2024 is your yr to attempt once more—however this time with the steerage of Elena Duque, an esthetician and authorized make-up artist.

However earlier than you try this method, it’s necessary to grasp what contouring truly does to your face. “Contouring is the artwork of skillfully manipulating shadows and shading to craft a visible deception of depth,” Duque says. “By strategically making use of these strategies, you may effortlessly redefine and reshape your facial options, permitting sure areas to naturally emerge from the remainder.”

Step one to contouring appropriately? Working with a product that’s simply blendable and is a shade or two darker than your pores and skin tone. Duque encourages individuals to experiment with completely different merchandise to search out one which works greatest for them, however one product she recommends—particularly to those that need their contour to final—is a cult favourite amongst make-up fans: tarte’s Form Tape contour. Though one in all these tubes will normally run you $35, you may seize two of them *and* a contour brush to simply mix out the product for $43 on QVC till the New Yr—aka you’ll spend all of 2024 trying extremely sculpted, for much less.

tarte Sculpt Tape Bronzing Wand Duo with Contour Brush — $43.00

Initially $53, now $43

Out there shades: cool bronze and comfortable bronze


  • Lengthy-lasting system
  • Simply blendable
  • Pure end
  • Buildable


  • A bit bit goes a great distance
  • Solely two shade choices


Now that you’ve a makeup-artist-approved product in hand, it’s time to start out contouring. Duque says it’s necessary to start out with a clear and moisturized face earlier than making use of any make-up, so you may have a easy canvas to work on.

Subsequent, look at your face form. A typical mistake made by first-time contourers is making use of the product in a means that doesn’t swimsuit their face form, Duque says, which may spotlight the mistaken options or simply look awkward. Discovering that candy spot could take some trial and error, however Duque recommends watching YouTube tutorials by individuals with an analogous face form to yours or attending make-up workshops led by skilled make-up artists.

“Contouring is a ability that takes time to grasp, so don’t rush the method,” Duque says. “Begin with primary strategies and steadily experiment with extra superior strategies. Be affected person with your self and embrace the training curve.”

When you discover a tutorial you need to observe, Duque suggests beginning with just a bit little bit of product, particularly the tarte Form Tape contour because it’s buildable. “Contouring is all about creating refined shadows and dimension, so it’s necessary to start out with a lightweight hand and construct up the depth steadily,” she says. “It’s simpler so as to add extra product than to take away extra.”

Since contouring is primarily used to create the phantasm of shadow, Duque says to concentrate on the hollows of your face, such because the hollows of your cheeks, temples, jawline, and sides of the nostril. When you’ve utilized product to those areas, you’ll transfer on to some of the necessary steps of contouring: Mixing. To be able to make the contour look pure, mixing the product out with the helpful contour brush that comes with the tarte Form Tape contour, a humid magnificence blender, or your fingers so there aren’t any stark strains is important.

After you’ve blended the contour, don’t overlook to spotlight your face. “Contouring and highlighting go hand in hand,” Duque says. “After making use of your contour, use a lighter shade or a highlighter to intensify the excessive factors of your face, such because the tops of your cheekbones, forehead bone, and the bridge of your nostril.”

Lastly, it’s time to set your make-up with a translucent powder or setting spray to ensure it lasts all through the day, Duque says. Though it might take just a few tries to search out which contouring method works for you, Duque says to maintain experimenting and also you’ll obtain the contour of your goals.

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