How To Contour & Find New Ways To Wear Blush
Today’s guest blog is brought to you by UK-based, gender-free makeup brand Jecca Blac. Jecca Blac began with safe space makeup lessons for makeup wearers at the very start of their journey with self-expression – presenting clients an opportunity to experiment with makeup for the first time in a relaxed, private, judgment-free setting. Many of the clients to attend these makeup lessons were from the trans and cross-dressing community, and came to Jecca Blac’s Founder with requests for concealing beard shadow and developing a contour regime.
One of Jecca Blac’s first ever products to launch was created with makeup wearers in mind who wanted to develop a simple and effective contouring regime. The Sculpt & Soften Palette includes a free 34-page guide and even went on to win GOLD in the ‘Contour’ category at the 2021 Beauty Bible Awards.
Today we’re sharing our top tips for achieving a seamless contour while sharing a whole new way to incorporate blush!
1. Complete your base
Previously we had the pleasure of sharing some of our top tips for makeup beginners at the very start of their journey with building a makeup collection, specifically taking into account the needs of transfeminine makeup wearers. You can watch our Livestream featuring our Founder, Jessica Blackler, here!
When contouring, apply all your other base products first – this includes any primers, foundation, colour correction, and concealer. Priming is an essential step to ensuring a smooth, long-lasting base – particularly for makeup wearers who prefer a fuller coverage.
Our Blur & Matte Primer is ideal for long-lasting, full coverage looks as it blurs the skin’s texture including fine lines, pores, and beard shadow. To use a Primer, simply apply with your fingertips all over your face following your skincare – focusing the product on any areas that you feel require extra coverage. Following this step, you can conceal and complete any foundation or coverage you incorporate into your routine – our Correct & Conceal Palette was designed with makeup wearers in mind who seek beard shadow coverage and can be used to colour correct and conceal beard shadow as well as provide an all over base instead of foundation.
2. Get your tools ready!
Contouring involves creating an illusion where light and shadows fall on the face. Because of this, you’ll want to have:
A brush for your highlight
A brush for your contour
A stippling brush or beauty sponge for blending
Ensure all 3 brushes are fresh and clean. For the brushes you’ll be using for the highlight and contour, it is best not to use a brush that is too large – opt instead for one with a head (the part with the bristles) around the size of your thumb.
Once you have chosen your brushes, it is time to choose your contouring pigments for your look. Choose your product wisely – we recommend using a cream product that is easy to blend and has a natural-looking, skin-like finish such as our award-winning Contour Palette. Once you’ve got your kit ready and your product of choice to hand, it’s time to contour!
3. Find your light!
Our top tip for a natural-looking contour is to always use natural daylight. In fact, this is the best way to see any makeup – synthetic overhead lighting can cast harsher shadows across the face and this can give an inaccurate idea of how your makeup will show in natural daylight. Our next tip for a natural-looking contour is to use a cream-based contour palette – these will leave a natural, skin-like finish to your makeup. They’re also easier to blend than powders, making for a faster, simpler application. In our Sculpt & Soften Palette, our highlight shade is the lighter of the two and is labeled ‘Soften’ while our contouring shade is darker, and is labeled ‘Sculpt.’
Now you’ve got your tools and product ready and your base makeup otherwise primed and complete, you’re ready to contour! When contouring, consider what you’d like your end goal to be. Are you looking to emphasise your cheekbones? Would you like to slim your nose, or soften the jaw area, or change the appearance of your brow bone? At Jecca Blac, we don’t believe there is any one method that suits every face, and your preference for contouring is entirely up to you – firstly ask yourself what would make you feel most confident? Find yourself a comfortable spot in front of some natural light and place your mirror in front of you. Consider where the natural shadows fall on your face, and what you would like to emphasise or soften.
4. Contouring: Cheekbones
If you’d like a more chiseled cheekbone, first find where your natural cheekbone sits on your face by feeling along from the tragus of the ear to the side of the lips. To begin your contour, first, take your chosen brush for your contour shade (which in our Sculpt & Soften Palette is labeled ‘Sculpt’), and then map out the product along where you would like to cast a shadow and create the illusion of a deeper cheekbone. ‘Sculpt’ is perfect for this as it is designed to be darker than the makeup wearer’s skin tone – so, take a small amount of your contour product, and softly draw a line where you would like to add depth to the face. Make sure not to draw your contour line all the way from your ear to your lips – instead, start at your ear and stop when you reach just in front of your eye area. Once you’ve mapped out your contour shade on both sides and they are symmetrical, you can change brushes and reach for your highlighting product (shade ‘Soften’).
Take a small amount of product, and map out above and below the line you have created with your contour. Doing this will help bring your features forward and add light to these areas, creating dimension. Once symmetrical on both sides, you can take your beauty sponge or stippling brush (which is what we usually opt for) and pat away at the lines you have created, blurring their appearance until no harsh edges or heavy product is visible. Patting and stippling is best for blending product as it won’t smudge the product, and will soften the lines while keeping the product in place.
5. Contouring: Nose
For nose contour, a popular choice is to create a slimmer appearance with a lifted tip. You’ll need the highlighter part of your contour palette (shade ‘Soften’). Apply a thin line of the highlighting product down your nose, stopping just before where the tip would turn up. Add a dot of product onto the tip of your nose – you should see something that looks a bit like an exclamation mark! For added lift, add a little ‘Sculpt’ just below the tip. Once you have this, you can blend out the product using your stippling brush.
6. Contouring: Shorten the Forehead
We don’t believe cis female beauty standards are what makeup wearers should aspire to – as all of us deserve to be celebrated in our own way – one of the most commonly requested contouring methods is how to shorten the forehead as a small forehead can be deemed soft and feminine.
Add your contour shade (‘Sculpt’) to the front of your brow bone – this will help push it further back. Add a little highlight (‘Soften’) just on top of where you have drawn the horizontal line along your brow bone. Blend well, using your stippling brush or sponge.
7. Complete your contour!
We believe the perfect way to finish a contour is with a dewy highlight, such as our Glow Drops in the shade Rose Pearl. These can be applied as a dewy primer before makeup, but they also double up as a liquid highlight when completing your look. To add an extra touch of shimmery light to any areas you want to lift and highlight, tap some Glow Drops onto your cheekbones, the tip of your nose, and the cupid’s bow.
8. Add colour!
Blush is a total game changer when it comes to brightening the skin and adding a youthful glow to your look. Once you have completed your contour, we recommend checking out some of our top tips for how to enhance different parts of your face using blushed pigments, such as our Red Touch Play Pot – a super versatile cream pigment that can be applied as a cream blush, lip tint, or eyeshadow to add a playful pop of colour when completing your look!
Our final piece of advice is to take all the time you need with your makeup – practice makes perfect, so enjoy the learning process and give yourself all the time you need to get to where you need to be.
We hope you enjoyed our tips! Want free makeup assistance or advice on shade matching? CLICK HERE.
Any questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
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