How to Contour Makeup for Your Face Shape

April 18, 2019

Contour makeup seems easy in theory. All you really need to do is find your shade, highlight the center of your face, and put shadows along the edges.

However, if there’s anything that YouTube makeup tutorials have taught us, it’s that knowing the shape of your face is essential when applying makeup. Lucky for us, the internet has an endless realm of suggestions for using contour to bring out our best facial features. But isn't there some kind of guide to steps for each shape, individually?

Well, now there is! We've broken it all down to make it super easy for you:

How to Contour a Round Face

The meaning: This means that the length and width of your face is roughly the same size. Because of this symmetry, contour can do wonders to help accentuate your facial features.

The method: Use the dark contour powder to deepen the edges of your forehead and temples, and use the lighter powder to define your cheekbones and nose. You can also contour along your jawline for a chiseled look. Stay away from putting any contour on your chin so that your face appears longer in juxtaposition with the dark shadows at the top of your face.

How To Contour an Oval Face

The meaning: An oval face shape typically hosts high cheekbones, a large or wide forehead, and a narrow chin.

The method: The simple “3” outlining method will work fine for this contour makeup. Just sweep your dark contouring powder in the shape of the number three on either sides of your face. This will hit the outer temples, below your cheekbones, and under your chin to generate a more characterized look. You can go back over these spots as many times as necessary to suit your skin tone, but be sure to subtly blend them out for a more natural appearance.

How to Contour a Square face

The meaning: A square face will have cheekbones, a forehead, and a chin that are all the same width. A square face creates a structured look that might be too masculine for some of your tastes. Thankfully, contour makeup can help bring out a more feminine look by highlighting your natural features.

The method: By contouring equally around the perimeter of your face, you can opt to create a more oval face appearance. The dark shadows will help to soften the edges and can subsequently be used to give the illusion of striking cheekbones. This can be done by gently contouring just below the cheekbones and brushing up towards your temples.

How to Contour a Heart Shaped Face

The meaning: Those with heart-shaped faces have a wider forehead, prominent cheekbones, and a sharp chin. The goal in most cases is to create an oval-shaped face. A quick contouring in key areas should help do the trick.


The method: By contouring the outer edges on your forehead, you can get the appearance of a more symmetrical face shape. Use the contour on the sides of your chin to give it a less prominent presence, and don’t forget to brush along your temples and cheekbones. There’s no need to contour along the jawline for this shape since the sides of your face are already slim!