How To Contour And Highlight Perfectly

When you apply foundation to your entire face, you’ve created a blank canvas, so you have to go back and add the dimensions back in. Remember in art class how you used darker shading to push an area away and lighter shading to pull an area towards you? That’s all we’re doing here! It creates the illusion of a stronger jawline, more chiseled cheeks and a slimmer face. And the easiest way to do this is by drawing the letter E on each side of your face to contour and the letter C on each side of your eyes. Anyone can do that, right? I’m showing you how to do it with both cream and powder formulas together for staying power, but you can certainly do one or the other.

  • Cream Foundation or Cream Bronzer - you can simply find a cream foundation that is four or so shades darker than your foundation (I love Jouer Age-Repairing Perfector Foundation in Tawny for fair to medium skin tones or Almond for darker skin tones) or you can try Hourglass Illume, a cream bronzer + highlight duo that I’ve been using on my clients with fair to medium skin tones for at least three years now.
  • A Flat-headed Foundation Brush - this really presses the cream into the skin and does all the work for you. I love Dior Full Coverage Fluid Brush for an investment but Flat Top Kabuki Brush will get the job done too.
  • Blush/Contour Brush - the best brush to blend cream foundation or bronzer is a natural-bristled round-headed one that is densely packed like the Cozzette Contour Stylist Brush, the iconic must-have for makeup artists at Fashion Week around the world.
  • Bronzing + Highlighting Powder - you can certainly buy them separately but I love Trish McEvoy Dual Resort Bronzer + Highlight because it’s the perfect amount of warmth with a hint of shimmer.
  • Angled Contour Brush - I love Sigma’s Large Angled Contour Brush for its fluffy angled bristles.


After you’ve applied your foundation all over your face and neck but before any powder, dip your brush into the cream bronzer/darker foundation to load it up.

Swirl the brush on the back of your hand to take away some of the intensity.

Start at the middle of the top of your hairline and begin the letter E by tracing along the perimeter down to your temple.

Suck in your cheeks to see exactly where your cheekbones are then continue the middle prong of the letter E by sweeping the brush from your temple to just underneath the cheekbone (to hollow it out).

Go back along the underside of your cheekbone to the ear then down to your jawline. Finish the E by sweeping the brush just on and underneath the jawline. I like to also fill in the whole neck to really shade it, but I have profile issues and do anything I can to make mine more pronounced!

Repeat on the other side.

Now swirl off any remainder on a tissue or the back of your hand and use the same brush to fill up with the cream highlighter.

Draw the letter C by holding the brush in the middle of your forehead just above your brow and outlining the eye all the way to your temple then down under your eye just above your cheekbone. This will pull that area forward and really highlight your eyes.

Repeat on the other side.

Take the dry blush brush and go back over the E’s and C’s in swirling motions to really blend it into the skin. You could also use a Beauty Blender sponge to do this.

Finish by grabbing the angled contour brush and going over the E with the bronzing powder and the C with the highlighting powder.

How to save time and money by trimming your own bangs at home

Here’s our guide to getting a salon-worthy bang trim every time:

Tool Up: You can’t cut with any old pair of scissors, as much as it can be tempting to start snipping every time you start to see a wayward hair. You’ll need to trim the length off your fringe using specialized cutting shears and for 99 percent of wearers, your bangs will also need to be thinned out and texturized at the ends, so you’ll need to arm yourself with thinning shears as well.

Clean ‘N’ Dry: Work with freshly washed hair, and blow dry straight in your usual style until completely dry (strands expand when wet and then will contract once dried, so cutting on damp or wet hair will give you an inaccurate length). Clip the rest of your hair up so you don’t accidentally snip any other part of your style.

Keep Checking: Work slowly and keep stepping back from the mirror to check you are still working at your desired length and the ends are looking straight. If you have thicker hair, it may be best for you to trim in two sections.

Thin Out: The purpose of your thinning shears is to blend everything together and keep the line from looking completely blunt (unless that’s that look you are going for). Again, work slowly and keep stepping back to check it’s all coming together.

Never Cut Straight Across: Leave that to the professionals. Find the trimming point with your fingers and hold with one hand. Take your shears and point vertically back up towards your bangs so you are snipping in short, sharp increments. Start at the center, and work your way outwards to one side, then repeat on the other end.

15 Ways To Up Your Ponytail Game

1. The low, soft ponytail

Grab Beyonce’s look here!

2. The cinched ponytail

Check it out here!

3. The knot

Check it out here.

4. The deconstructed pony

Check out the tutorial here.

5. The pretty pony

Learn how to perfect this look here.

6. The braid crown

Learn how to do it here.

7. The double braided

Check out how to do it here.

8. The raw textured ponytail

Check out the tutorial here.

9. The extra long ponytail

Learn this ponytail hack here.

10. The double mini braid

Check out the tutorial here!

11. The triple topsy tail pony

Check out the tutorial here!

12. The ponytail bow

Learn how here.

13. The fishtail

Check it how to do it yourself here.

14. The fluffy fishtail

Learn how to give your fishtail texture here!

15. The twisted side pony

Learn how to DIY here.