I’ve never really got the whole contouring thing. Controversial maybe, but the idea of caking on foundations in shades too dark for your skin tone, to create sharp, angular cheekbones just wasn’t doing it for me.
Don’t get me wrong, I tried to love it and I tried it all - Sculpting palettes, Clinique chubby sticks, The Body Shop's Instaglow CC Creams - but I found the look far too harsh (and let’s be honest, 9 times out of 10 I ended up with that dreaded brown streak down each cheek).
Having failed so drastically with a range of different cream/liquid based products, I’d lost all interest, but it turns out I’d just been using the wrong products all along.
Killing time in Boots one lunchtime, I let the girl on the Smashbox counter loose on my face. I just wanted a bit of bronzer, but she insisted she’d teach me how to contour. Sceptical, but with nothing better to do, I agreed, and that’s when I saw it: the Smashbox Contour Kit (Contour Queen Kimmy K’s palette of choice, no less!)
The palette has three dreamy powders (a contour, bronzer and highlight) that are the perfect shade for my skin tone, with a soft and buttery texture. But no matter how great a product, it’s useless without the right tool for the job, so I love that the kit also includes a dainty, fluffy, angled contour brush.
The Smashbox lady showed me how to use the brush properly, using different angles for the different shades, and exactly where and how to apply the product for a soft, natural-looking contour. After she made one side of my face look about 10lbs slimmer, she passed me the brush to try the other side, and surprisingly - I did it!
How to Contour with the Smashbox Contour Kit:
- Use the pointy tip of the brush to pick up some contour powder, tap off the excess (it’s pigmented so you only need a tiny amount) and delicately dust into the hollows of your cheeks (duck face compulsory).
- Use the flat edge of the brush in the bronzer shade and apply just above the contour, blending the shades together for a softer effect
- Use the flat edge of the brush in the highlight (I’m a bit more liberal with this as I love a good highlight!) and sweep under the eyes and up the cheekbones.
- Take the highlight underneath the contour shade to make the contour pop
- Using the pointy tip of the brush in the contour powder, apply a very very small amount either side of the bridge of the nose
- Highlight down the centre of the bridge of the nose and blend well.
- Lightly dust bronzer around the hairline and under the jawline
- Finish off with a little highlight on the middle of forehead and chin
And if you want to use blush too, just a small amount on the apples of the cheeks only!
Also included in the kit is this handy guide to identifying and contouring different face shapes - I have a ‘heart shape’ face and find the steps above work perfectly on me, but different shaped faces will need to apply the product slightly differently for the best effect.
The velvety soft powders blend together flawlessly and melt into the skin so you’re not left with any cakey-ness or harsh, angular lines - just a soft, glowy play on light and shade for killer cheekbones.
Can you contour?
Can you contour?