A Polished Look simply requires natural makeup, but you may wish to be uber-polished at speaking engagements or formal parties. Kim Kardashian is known for her uber-polished look, and it can be achieved by highlighting and contouring. On one of my favorite YouTube channels GiveGoodFace, Jordan Liberty of Liberty Republic answers your questions regarding this look:
What is contouring and highlighting
From an artist’s perspective, contouring is just a form of shading, or adding DEPTH. This is why you contour areas that you want to look concave (go inward), like the lower part of the cheekbones. These deeper shadows can change the curvature of the face, add dimension, and can even transform a face completely! Think about it: a 3-dimensional object is defined by how light falls on it.
Highlighting does the opposite of contouring, it makes objects appear convex (go outward). It can also make the face look lifted and youthful, which is why many of my more mature clients are more highlight-savvy than their daughters.
How to choose your contour shade
As a general rule, you want your contour shade to be DARKER and COOLER than your skin tone. Because contouring is just a fancy way of creating shadows, you want to mimic the cool gray color that a shadow casts over the skin. This is why contouring products look drab and dark – and also why bronzers make such terrible contour colors. Bronzers warm the skin – we want to cool it down! Can you contour with a bronzer? Yes – but it will be much more apparent and can even make the skin look dirty.
How to choose a highlighter
opposite your contour shade, you have many options for highlighters. A natural highlighter will be semi-matte or luminescent and will be just LIGHTER and WARMER than your skin tone. Marilyn Monroe was known to wear solid white powder as a highlighter, and today’s celebs use luminescent golds and pinks – the sky is the limit.
Where to PLACE your contours and highlights
Every face is different! In this video I contoured Ashley’s nose to show technique, but in real life I usually just define her cheekbones, jawline, and forehead. Try not to contour features that are already strong! For a general layout of contouring, look here: http://www.givegoodface.com/GGF_Contouring.jpg
Still confused? Watch Jordan
Enjoy the video? Not only are you ready to transcend in every environment but also to #GiveGoodFace while doing it! Be sure to tweet your pictures to Jordan and myself @notamagicwand and @youarekarla and to send more beauty, fashion, and career questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Until next time…