Shap­ing beauty We show you how to con­tour like a Kar­dashian

Be­fore con­tour­ing was #con­tour­ing, it was an ob­scure tech­nique for photo shoots. Now, face sculpt­ing has in­fil­trated In­sta­gram, Youtube, fash­ion run­ways – and your makeup rou­tine.

Glamour (South Africa) - - Front Page -

Is every­body con­tour­ing? Call us nuts, but the more we lurk on In­sta­gram or fall down Youtube rab­bit holes, the more we’re con­vinced that at least every third woman in the world un­der 30 has turned into a mas­ter of makeup sub­terfuge overnight. As with any trend of any kind right now, the usual sus­pects can, of course, be fin­gered.

“I call it the Kar­dashian ef­fect,” ex­plains Amy Chance, an LA makeup artist who works with the likes of Lily Allen, Sky Fer­reira and Chloë Se­vi­gny. “You can’t flip open a mag­a­zine, log on to the in­ter­net or turn on your TV without see­ing one of the Kar­dashi­ans do­ing nor­mal things, like shop­ping, car­ry­ing a baby or walk­ing out of the gym, with a fully con­toured face of makeup, look­ing per­fect.”

As a re­sult, Amy finds her­self field­ing re­quests for con­tour­ing all the time. “Se­ri­ously, I can be do­ing the most nat­u­ral, no-makeup makeup imag­in­able, and I’ll still be asked for cheek sculpt­ing,” she re­veals.

Fea­tures en­hanced

Cor­rec­tive makeup has been around since the dawn of cel­lu­loid. But, with a me­te­orite-level col­li­sion of aroundthe-clock pa­parazzi, re­al­ity TV and the fact that we’re all con­stantly surveilling each other via self­ies, so­cial me­dia and on­line videos, the fine line be­tween our pub­lic and pri­vate-fac­ing selves has be­come in­creas­ingly blurred.

It’s one thing to let some­one take your pic­ture; it’s an­other thing en­tirely to trust them to bust out an im­age­bur­nish­ing app, like Face­tune (R40 on An­droid; R80 on IOS). This makeup tech­nique leaves noth­ing to chance; it’s like hav­ing your own real-life, cus­tomis­able In­sta­gram fil­ter.

De­spite the time and the ex­pense (a de­cent sculpt-and-pow­der brush can cost R300), there’s a se­duc­tive qual­ity to how at­tain­able it all feels. Any­one who has watched the sped-up part of a Youtube con­tour­ing video knows how sat­is­fy­ing it is to see up­side-down tri­an­gles of taupe, grey-brown and white turn into brighter eyes, lifted cheek­bones, a shrunken chin and pert nose. The idea that strate­gic blend­ing and tricks of light can mimic the ef­fects of taste­ful plas­tic surgery is enor­mously ap­peal­ing. Why wouldn’t you try it?

And it doesn’t look like the trend is go­ing to fade away any­time soon. “I took a mas­ter­class with Kim Kar­dashian [West] and her makeup artist Mario De­di­vanovic,” ex­plains Ara­belle Si­cardi, a fash­ion and beauty writer. “There was a lot of money in that room – ev­ery­one had trav­elled from afar to at­tend the event.”

Im­per­fec­tions gone

For some­one like Amy, who has watched her fair share of makeup trends come and go over a 12-year ca­reer, this re­lent­less pur­suit of flaw­less­ness can be a bit of a bum­mer.

“Ev­ery­one’s con­tour­ing away the lit­tle per­ceived im­per­fec­tions that make their faces unique,” she says. “You end up with a bunch of 18 year olds look­ing 35. I miss the nat­u­ral, healthy glow of skin. I like freck­les!”

It can take a solid 10 min­utes to get through a con­tour­ing tu­to­rial on Youyube – and that’s with time-lapse. “To be hon­est, con­tour­ing is quite ex­treme,” ad­mits makeup pro­fes­sional Diane Ken­dal. In real life, “con­tour­ing can be flat­ter­ing and pretty, but less prod­uct re­ally is more,” she ex­plains.

1Stick­with pow­ders Al­most all video tu­to­ri­als use creams that show up well on cam­era, but if you’re new to con­tour­ing, matte pow­ders are eas­ier to blend, ex­plains makeup artist Troy Sur­ratt. Pick a pow­der that’s two shades darker than your skin; a bronzer or taupe blush works, too, says Kris­ten Ste­wart’s makeup artist Jillian Dempsey.

2Don’t draw dark stripes In fact, don’t draw any stripes. Suck in your cheeks and use cir­cu­lar mo­tions to buff taupe into the hol­lows be­low your cheek­bones, says makeup artist Char­lotte Til­bury, who con­tours Cara Delev­ingne and Kate Moss. Buy a fluffy fan brush for the soft shad­ing.

3Go easy with the high­lighter Re­mem­ber, it’s your face, not a ge­om­e­try project – you don’t need blocks of high­lighter on your cheek­bones to cre­ate a flat­ter­ing glow! Lightly dust a cham­pagne pow­der “on the tops of your cheek­bones, down the bridge of the nose and on your Cupid’s bow,” rec­om­mends Char­lotte.

Skin sculpt­ing

The next gen­er­a­tion of con­tour­ing is one part face shap­ing, and one part clever mar­ket­ing spin on anti-age­ing. “Film for­m­ers are a new ap­proach to fa­cial sculpt­ing: they tighten skin and smooth wrin­kles un­til they’re washed off,” says cos­metic chemist Randy Schueller. You’ll find for­m­ers in Estée Lauder New Di­men­sion Ex­pert Liq­uid Tape (R805), which is a light­weight, sticky serum that helps tighten your skin and smooth lines. Fol­low the di­rec­tions cor­rectly and hold your skin taut when ap­ply­ing.

What the in­ter­net al­ways gets wrong

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