Ever wonder how to minimize your forehead, sculpt your cheekbones or create a jawline—minus the surgery? Celebrity makeup artist Jai Williams shares his step-by-step guide to creating a close-up-worthy face.
Six Steps to a Great Face
1 Prep the skin with a pore-minimizing primer for a lasting look.
2 Decide which formulation is best for you: Liquid or cream? Matte or glossy? For seamless blending, select products that are the same type.
3 Choose both a lighter shade and a darker shade of foundation, concealer or a foundation/concealer combo.
4 Apply the lighter hue to the areas to be highlighted, then follow with the darker hue for the areas to be contoured.
5 Combine with your fingers, a makeup brush or a sponge—whatever you feel most comfortable using.
6 Finish with a talc-free translucent setting powder or bronzer to avoid an ashy appearance.
What is Contouring?
Contouring is strategically applying a combination of foundations and/or concealers—one that is slightly lighter and another that is slightly darker than your skin tone—to fool the eye. "Using a lowlight [the darker shade] and a highlight [the lighter shade], you can easily shrink a forehead, create fuller lips, refine a nose and bring out the cheekbones," explains Williams.
FOLLOW OUR LOWLIGHT/HIGHLIGHT KEY TO CREATE YOUR FACE Lowlight: Shape the hairline and reduce the forehead. Highlight: Define the forehead. Lowlight: Reduce puffy eyelids. Highlight: Mask puffiness and dark circles under the eyes. Lowlight: Alter the width of the nose. Highlight: Lengthen the bridge of the nose. Lowlight: Enhance cheekbones. Lowlight: Sculpt a jawline. Hightlight: Create a chin.
Easy Contouring Essentials
With the right makeup, sculpting a fabulous face can be a cinch. We love this classic highlighter pen, Yves Saint LaurentTouche Eclat Radiant Touch in Luminous Praline, ($40, yslbeautyus.com). It's great for lightening dark areas on the face.
Giorgio Armani Fluid Sheer
Giorgio Armani Fluid Sheer ($59, select Bloomingdale's). A multiuse liquid illuminating veil, it brightens and defines.
Lancôme Teint Visionnaire Skin Correcting Makeup Duo
Lancôme Teint Visionnaire Skin Correcting Makeup Duo ($60, lancome.com), this lightweight, full-coverage concealer and foundation combo is available in 20 shades.
Philosophy Miracle Worker Anti-Aging Color Correcting Concealing Duo
Get two shades in one with this compact ($25, Ulta).
Vapour Mesmerize Eye Color Eye Shadow and Illusionist Perfecting Concealer
They're 100 percent natural. Use one to highlight and the other to conceal. ($18 and 20, vapourbeauty.com)
Too Faced Natural Face Natural Radiance Face Palette
It's complete with illustrated how-to-apply cards. ($39, Sephora)
Urban Decay Naked Illuminated Shimmering for Face and Body
The powder's microfine shimmer and light-reflecting particles will help highlighted areas glow ($29, Sephora).