The beauty world, as you will have realised by now, has gone contouring crazy. I mentioned in my previous post that my preferred contour method, for a really soft and subtle look, was simply a sweep of matte bronzing powder beneath the cheekbones. None of that “snail trail” of illuminator across the top, no harsh lines, no muddiness. With that in mind, I decided to give the Clinique Sculptionary Cheek Contouring Palette a go. Much more “up my street” than the Chubby Sticks, which, despite having received a unanimous round of applause online I still can’t get the knack of. (The illuminator stick is very weak-willed, for a start – it barely shows up on my skin. Then there’s the dark contour stick, which only comes in one shade and can get a little muddy and messy upon blending, as can all cream contour products. Seems foolproof, with its chunky child’s crayon-type appearance, but I’m still struggling to get it looking as good as a powder.)
And so move over Chubby Sticks, enter stage left the Sculptionary Palette. I used the Defining Nudes version. Three shades – one highlight, one colour, one contour – for painstakingly creating that sucked-in-cheek look with your various contour and blush brushes. Or, if you’re lazy like me, three shades that can be swirled together with one massive brush (Chanel Powder No.3, perhaps) and applied slap-dashedly all over for an instant healthy glow. Behold my before:
Who needs lengthy contouring methods when you can lightly bronze beneath your cheekbones and be done with it? Marvellous. Clinique’s Sculptionary Cheek Contouring Palette costs £28 here.
I seriously doubt that this will be the end of my contouring investigations; I have become slightly obsessed with it, recently. Not with actually doing it, but just observing others who have. I enjoy bearing witness to the various levels of contour ridiculousness, but also having a genuine admiration when it is done really convincingly, when it becomes kind of like a weird optical illusion. I did a Max Factor video last week (don’t think it’s out yet, I’ll give you a nudge when it is) where I did a softer contour using the new Creme Puff blushers (which are properly lovely, by the way) and I really liked the effect. It was far stronger than I would ever wear in real life, but that’s the problem with this whole contouring craze: most of the demos you see are in online video tutorials, and you have to pile on loads of makeup so that the effect is dramatic enough. In an everyday situation, you need – and want – far less. Tread carefully, use the lightest touch!
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