One of the most common questions we get from our readers is, “Which shade should I contour with?” Many struggles to find the right one. It is because contouring can look different for everyone, meaning there is no one-size-fits-all solution. However, once you understand how your skin tone and undertone affect the look of your makeup and that of the contour shade, you’ll be able to choose the right shade and create your unique contouring routine.
The easiest way to understand which shade works best for you is to follow the guide below. This article will explain everything you need to know about the different shades, from What your undertone is?, How to choose your contour shade? and Why do you need to choose the right shade for your complexion?
What is Contouring?
Contouring is the art of using shadows to create the illusion of one’s cheekbones, nose, chin, and forehead. It is an essential makeup technique that can help you achieve a more defined and polished look, especially if you are someone who has a weak face structure. Contouring has been around for a long time and is commonly used in many cultures worldwide to achieve beautiful, natural-looking facial features. It is trendy among makeup artists and amateurs who want to learn how to sculpt their faces to match their natural features.
Many celebrities are also famous for contouring their faces, including the Kardashians and Selena Gomez. As contouring is such a popular technique, there are many different ways to do it. The shade that works best for one person’s skin tone may look completely different on someone else. This is why it’s essential to understand your own skin’s undertone before choosing a contour shade.
Here are the 7 Best Skin Shading Techniques
While there is no “one-size-fits-all” shade of contour for every skin tone, there are generally seven different ways to shade your face: Highlight Contouring, Mid-Shade Contouring, Dark Contour, Neutral Undertone Contouring, Ombre Contouring, Colour Blocking, and Pencil and Brush Contouring.
- Highlight Contouring: This is where you highlight the high points of your face, such as your cheekbones, brow bones, nose bridge, and Cupid’s bow. It will instantly make your face look more defined and draw attention to your features.
- Mid-Shade Contouring: This is where you add a darker shade of foundation to the hollows of your cheeks, under your eyes, on your chin, and down the center of your nose. It will immediately give your face a more defined look and help draw more attention to your features.
- Dark Contour: This is where you create the illusion of a broad and angular face by applying a dark shade of foundation to your hollows, down your cheeks, and over your brow bones. This technique is mainly used to create the illusion of a sharp nose, chin, and jawline.
- Neutral Undertone Contouring: This is where you choose a shade that matches your skin tone and adds a soft, matte shade to the rest of your face, creating the illusion of a natural porcelain complexion. This effortless yet effective technique will help you achieve a more polished, natural look.
- Ombre Contouring: This is where you choose a lighter shade of contour shade that gradually becomes darker as it moves down your face, creating the illusion of light radiating off of your features. This effect is often mimicked by using a light bronzing powder to contour, which can look more natural than contouring with a shade that is too dark.
- Colour Blocking: This is where you choose a bright, bold color that is slightly darker than your natural lip color and slightly lighter than your contour shade and apply it to your face by using an eyeshadow brush or pressed eyeshadow. This technique can create the illusion of a colorful, sparkly look that is perfect for Halloween or a colorful themed party.
Understanding Your Undertone and How That Affects Your Contour Shade
It would be best to keep a few important things in mind when choosing a contour shade, including your undertone and skin tone. Understanding your undertone is critical because it will help you choose the right contour shade for your complexion.
- Cool Undertone: Cool undertones are often neutral or light-toned, and they include shades like neutral beige and neutral pinks. Cool undertones are the opposite of warm undertones, including warm tones like reds, browns, and golden yellows.
- Warm Undertone: Warm undertones are often neutral, olive, or dark-toned, making them the best choice for contouring if you have a neutral undertone.
- Olive Skin: Olive skin is often neutral or light-toned and includes shades like beige and yellow.
- Red Skin: Red skin is often warm-toned and includes shades like oranges, browns, dark greens, and maroons.
- Yellow Skin: Yellow skin is often neutral or light-toned and includes shades like golds and silvers.
Finding Your Perfect Contour Shade
Choosing the perfect contour shade for your skin tone can be a daunting task, especially if you don’t know where to start. This is why it’s important to find the right shade for you. If you’re unsure where to start, try using a contour shade sampler to find the right shade for your skin tone. This will allow you to test out a variety of shades before you find the perfect one. You can also use our guide below to help you find the right contour shade for your skin tone. This will walk you through everything you need to know about finding the perfect contour shade, including your undertone and skin tone.
- Neutral Undertone Contour: This is where you choose a shade that matches your skin tone and adds a soft, matte shade to the rest of your face, creating the illusion of a natural porcelain complexion. This effortless yet effective technique will help you achieve a more polished, natural look.
- Cool Undertone Contour: This is where you choose a shade that is neutral or cool-toned and adds a matte, light-textured finish, creating the illusion of porcelain.
- Warm Undertone Contour: This is where you choose a shade that is warm-toned and adds a matte, light-textured finish, creating the illusion of porcelain.
- Ombre Contouring: This is where you choose a shade that gradually becomes darker as it moves down your face, creating the illusion of light radiating.
Tips for Selecting the Right Contour Shade
When choosing your contour shade, it’s important to keep in mind that it should be two to three shades darker than your skin tone. Contour shades should have a matte finish to create a more defined look and feel and should be applied in light layers for the best result. We recommend purchasing a contour shade with a highlighter finish, as this will allow you to apply pigment and then use a lighter hand to blend it out to create a more subtle, natural-looking contour shade.
🌟FAQ related to How to Choose Your Contour Shade
✅Which shade contour should I use?
Try out different colors on your skin until you find the one that works best with your skin tone. Pick a good powder that is one to two shades lighter than your foundation for highlighting and a powder that is one to two shades darker for contouring.
✅What is the best way to apply contour?
To give the appearance of narrowness, use the darker shade and apply it with a cruelty-free angled contour brush f30 to the sides of your forehead and your temples. Apply to the areas below your cheekbones, only going halfway and using a curved line to your jawline to help lengthen your face.
✅Should I use contour daily?
You cannot use the contour daily. Applying makeup every day can detract from your natural skin and make your face look less healthy. While a small amount of bronzer and highlighter can make your features stand out, too much heavy contouring can draw attention to your makeup.
✅Why does my face look dirty when I contour?
One of the most common mistakes women make when contouring is using a shade that is too dark, which looks dirty on their skin, rather than shading or shaping their face. If your foundation, tinted moisturizer, lotion whatever you have on your skin is too emollient, the contouring powder will catch on it. Stick to a matte powder for the contour, and don't bring the highlight too low or too forward.
✅What is the best way to get rid of harsh contour lines?
You can use a clean brush or sponge to blend the edges and brush out the dipped in the leftover foundation. The cosmetics ultimate blending brush is soft but dents, making it ideal for blending out harsh lines where your contour meets your foundation.
Contouring is one of the most effective makeup techniques and has been around for decades. It’s used to create the illusion of a more narrow or thinner face and has been around for decades. It’s become increasingly popular in recent years because of its ability to create various looks, from natural to dramatic, depending on the technique you choose and the shades you use. Choosing your contour shade is crucial to creating the right look but can be confusing if you don’t know where to start. Keep in mind that you should select your contour shade based on your skin tone and undertone. To choose the right shade for you, you need to know what these are.