If you’re a fan of contouring, you’ll know that it takes practice to get those cheekbones looking chiselled and that Cupid’s bow gleaming. But amongst those shimmering highlighters and liquid bronzers, there’s one product you’re probably ignoring that could make your contour look (and feel) more ‘I-woke-up-like-this’ than ‘contestant on Strictly Come Dancing.‘
To get the lowdown, we spoke to bareMinerals makeup artist SJ Froom on how to sculpt your face using ONLY concealer.
You’ll need three different concealer shades to fully contour your face, so start building up that concealer wardrobe now.
First, pick up your standard shade to use as normal to cover any dark circles, blemishes, redness, pigmentation or scarring. “Then, pick a concealer two to three shades darker than your natural skin tone as a contour colour, plus a concealer two to three shades lighter to use as a highlighter,” SJ recommends.
You’ll also need a small brush for blending, as well as your fingers.
Whatever your skin tone, SJ suggests always choosing a concealer shade that works with your skin’s natural undertones. “If you have cool undertones, choose cool concealer shades to highlight and contour,” she says. “For neutral undertones, go for neutral concealer shades and for golden skin tones, choose warmer shades. Head to your local bareMinerals counter if you’re still unsure – they can help you colour match.”
“Contouring with concealer is something professional makeup artists do all the time,” explains SJ. “It gives the most natural effect because you’re using formulas that blend perfectly together and work with the skin. Also, because you’re contouring with concealer, you won’t have to apply other products over the top, meaning you’re left with a much lighter and more natural finish.”
But with so many different concealers on the market, which product is best when it comes to contouring? SJ stands behind the concealer stick.
“Compared with liquid or powder concealers, concealer sticks often have creamier formulas that blend perfectly into the skin,” she says. “Sticks also glide onto the skin much more easily, giving you detailed precision. Apply straight from the stick so you have full control over the amount you’re applying.”
For an easy-to-use stick concealer, try bareMinerals’ new BAREPRO Full Coverage Concealer. The creamy consistency makes it a dream to blend, and it gives a soft matte finish with zero creasing. The waterproof and humidity-resistant formula also makes this contour crayon a safe bet for on-the-go days where you need a look that will stay in place until the early hours. It’s also ideal for balmy holidays where your liquid allowance doesn’t allow for your full makeup bag…
You’ve got the goods. But how do you actually contour with concealer? Our MUA pro explains all.
Step 1: Contour. “Apply your contour shade around your hairline, under your cheekbones, down the sides of your nose, under the tip of your nose, under your jawline and under the tip of your chin, as well as in the socket line of the eye,” says SJ.
Step 2: Blend. “After applying the product straight from the stick, blend it into the skin with a small brush,” says SJ. “Then use the ‘press and roll’ technique to work the concealer into your skin using your fingers for a perfect blend.”
Step 3: Highlight. “Apply your highlighter shade in the centre of your forehead, on the high points of your cheekbones, in the inner corners of your eyes, in an upside down triangle shape under your eyes, down the centre of your nose, on the tip of your nose, on the middle of your chin and above your Cupid’s bow,” explains SJ.
Step 4: Repeat the blending process above and voilà – a sculpted face using nothing but concealer!
The final tip
SJ’s final pieces of advice? “Start off light (less is more, people) and remember that a little goes a long way. Also, blend, blend, blend! You shouldn’t see where any of the colours start or stop – it should be a natural transition.”