Contour should be applied after foundation, as it can be blended easily and adjusted as necessary. The foundation forms a base layer to the face.
Applying foundation after contour would cause the contour to move and blur, ruining the effect.
Contour is used to give the face a layer of definition. Shades that are both darker and lighter than the natural skin tone are applied in strategic areas to highlight features.
A light application of contour can simply accentuate natural areas. It’s also used to soften the flattening effect that foundation can have. A heavy contour, using starkly different shades applied liberally, can give the face a whole new look.
Once the foundation has been applied, the face becomes a blank canvas. Foundation works to even out any skin tone, but it also gives a solid base to hold other types of makeup.
For people with naturally dry or oily skin, the foundation provides a surface for layers of makeup to cling to.
Once the foundation is set, the contour can be applied directly to it. Cream contour is popular for the easy control and bold coloring it provides. This is applied directly to the skin and then blended outwards to soften.
Powder contour can be used for a lighter effect, but it’s also good for layering. Once you have good control with the powder, this can be used for bold looks.
Foundation and contour are both set using a setting powder. This is a translucent layer that holds it all in place.
Can you contour with foundation?
Yes, you can contour using foundation. This is a great trick for anyone who might have a few different foundation shades and is wondering what to do with them. You might want to check out my guide on contouring naturally.
Almost every makeup wearer has bought the wrong foundation at some point. And once it’s been opened, there’s no chance for a return. So you end up stuck with bottles that can never be used.
Savvy people may even have more than one foundation on purpose, to accommodate for the natural changes that occur to our skin.
Make the most of this foundation by using it as a contour. Foundation is easy to blend, sticks to the skin, and creates a natural appearance.
Begin by applying the correct shade of foundation all over the face. You only want to use a thin layer, as more foundation will be layered on top.
Identify the lightest foundation you have. This may be one you choose to use in the winter, or simply a bad purchase. Apply this to the areas that naturally find the sun.
This will act as the highlighter. Use it across the tops of the cheekbones, down the bridge of the nose and the center of the chin, and slightly above the line of the jaw.
Now find your darker foundation. This is probably your summer foundation. Apply this carefully to the hollow areas of your cheeks. Blend it out to soften the appearance.
Use a setting powder to finish the look, and you’re done! Perfect contour using just foundation.
What is the difference between contour and foundation?
Contour is a method of applying makeup that is used to give the face an effect of greater definition. Foundation is a base layer that’s applied to clean skin to even out the skin tone.
Contour is then used on top of the foundation. Both products work together, but they aren’t the same thing.
A contour uses shades that are subtly different to your natural skin tone. A lighter shade will give the appearance of light hitting, whereas a darker shade adds hollowed definition.
These colors are applied to strategic areas of the face.
Foundation should match the natural skin tone and be applied across the face.
Foundation is commonly used to cover imperfections. It can also brighten the face, and improve the texture of the skin.
Many choose to contour after foundation simply to bring life back to the face. Foundation can flatten the appearance, especially if it’s been applied heavily.
A simple contour will make a dull foundation more lively. Although contour has a reputation for being a heavy and involved process, it can be as simple as applying a blusher and highlighter.
Although the processes are different, foundation can be used to contour. To do this, all you need are foundations in slightly different shades. They’re then applied in the same areas that a contour would be applied.
Contouring can be used without a foundation base layer, but it’s less likely to stay in place.
Do you apply powder after contouring?
A setting powder should be used after contour to hold the look in place. Without this, contour can start to smudge as the day goes on. However, if using a powder contour, you may prefer to apply the setting powder before the contour.
When using a cream contour, a dusting of translucent powder is applied afterward to set everything throughout the day. A translucent powder shouldn’t show up at all, although some powders are lightly tinted.
Powders can be pressed into place or dusted. If pressing on a setting powder in order to ‘bake’ foundation or concealer, then be careful around the contour.
Baking is when the powder is applied in a heavy layer, left to set (or bake) and the excess brushed away. Baking keeps makeup crease-free for longer.
It can be used to correct a contour, but baking directly on top of the contour will diminish the effect.
If using a powder contour, you may prefer to use a setting powder beforehand. The dry base is good for the dry powder to stick to.
However, a light powder application on top of a powder contour can give it staying power.
There are no hard and fast rules to makeup, the trick is to find what works for you. Some prefer to apply setting powder before contour and set with a finishing spray.
It will depend on the contour you use, the powder you use, and your skin type.