How to Perfectly Contour Various Face Shapes

How to Perfectly Contour Various Face Shapes

Contouring works by creating effects of shadow and light using makeup that is slightly darker or lighter than actual skin color. An effective contouring can sculpt and add dimension to the face. 

There is no one-size-fits-all technique for effective contouring. Situations vary with different facial shapes. Here is a simple guide for accurate contouring for various facial shapes: 

Round Shaped Face (Example: Chrissy Teigen and Cameron Diaz)


  • To create a more angular shape, contour the sides of your forehead, along with your temples to make this wider area appear more narrow and on your jawline to help give your face a more defined shape. Make sure to blend out your contour until there are no obvious contour lines. Your face will end up with soft, natural-looking shadows! 

Oval Face Shape (Example: Meghan Markle)

  • Oval face shape is considered to be the most balanced. To narrow the forehead, apply shading on the forehead to shorten the overall visual face length. Apart from the forehead contour, add contour below the cheekbones for extra definition. Start from the ears and end at the middle of the cheek to keep it looking natural.

Square Shape Face (Example: Angelina Jolie and Olivia Wilde)


  • Similar width of the hairline and jawline is the characteristic of a square shaped face. Contour the sides of your forehead to make the hairline appear to be narrower. Also contour the area below cheekbones (from ears to the ending of the middle of your cheeks), as well as the jawbone to make your jawline appear narrower. Again, make sure to blend out for a subtle fade that will make your features look less harsh.

Heart Face Shape (Example: Miranda Kerr)

Photo by Rich Fury/Invision/AP
  • A heart-shaped face is the widest along the forehead but gets more angular and pointed toward the jawline. With a shape like this, both contour and highlight are needed. Strobe the highlighter along the bridge of your nose, the tops of your cheeks, and your upper jawline. Then, take your contour along the sides of your forehead to minimize the width. Since you already have a defined jawline, you’ll only need a bit of contour below your chin. Blend it all together. 

Check out our Beauty Contour Guide — this tool makes nose, cheek and jawline contouring easier and faster. Accurately contours, and it actually fits any face shape.