woman putting on makeup, contourCredit : Pexels/George Milton

Contouring helps define and lift your face without going under any needles. But figuring out where exactly your contour should be placed on your face to get the best results can be a challenge for some.

Contouring is the opposite of highlighting. According to Ipsy, it is the art of adding shadows to your face to define or even recede. Contouring is also all about focusing on the lower points of your face. 

Like any other art form, contouring can seem quite intimidating. But we promise that contouring isn't quite as complicated as you might think. The first thing worth noting when it comes to contouring is that your placement should change based on your face shape and features. For example, if someone has a small forehead, they might not necessarily need to contour that area.

Here's how to contour for your face shape. 


If you have a rounder face shape, the best place to start your contour is at the temples and forehead. The whole point of contouring is to define or slim down features, and beginning with this can help. When it comes to your cheeks, Iconic London suggests applying it below your cheekbones, from your ear to the middle of your cheeks. Finish off your contour by sweeping down your jawline because this can help lengthen your face shape. 


When it comes to oval face shapes, it is recommended that you focus on your cheek area and jawline. Charlotte Tilbury recommends applying contour in your temples and blending up toward your hairline, which gives it a shading effect. The last area to contour is your jawline, and blending down will give your jaw a stronger look. 


For those with a heart-shaped face, start by defining your forehead and temples. This can help balance out your features more. Charlotte Tilbury recommends applying the contour from the top of your ear, then down along your cheekbones. Blend it out. It is also recommended to put a little contour on your chin, which can soften your features. 


When it comes diamond-shaped faces, focus on the temples and blend up. With your cheeks, it is recommended to start your contour below the cheekbones, from the ear to the middle of the cheek. 


Although these are different face shapes, they do have similar suggestions for contouring. The key to both of these face shapes is to focus on the forehead and temples, which will help define and narrow those areas. It's also great to sweep a little contour along your hairline, which can make your forehead look smaller. For this type of face shape, it is recommended to use contour in the hallows of your cheek. When it comes to your jawline, start from the bottom of your ears and blend.