Here’s what I love about beauty—even with all of the classic, staple looks everyone adores, there’s still plenty of room for new trends. One realm in particular where new techniques are common is the messy and complicated world of contouring. We’ve seen it done well (and poorly) on celebs like Kim Kardashian, Sarah Hyland, Kylie Jenner, and more, and it’s been done on faces, bodies, and even hair. Well, now there’s something new for us all to be bewildered by: colorless contouring.
First things first: the kind of contouring we’ve come to know and love involves dark bronzers, highlighters, and a complicated amount of smudging, so what even is colorless contouring? Charlie Riddle, the global director of creative artistry at Jane Cosmetics, explains it like this:
“It’s essentially a way to structure the face and define features using minimal effort and complementary shades for your skin tone that mimic your natural beauty.”
The results, apparently, are more subtle (which, I guess, you’d expect out of something with the word “colorless” in the title) and serve to make you look just a touch more sculpted. It doesn’t give you the sculpted Kim Kardashian cheekbones of normal contouring, but it seems to me like it’d be a good daytime option for contouring beginners.
So, how’s it done? Charlie recommends sticking with neutral colors reminiscent of your skin tone, so if you’re fair, stick with lighter colors, and if you’re darker, use darker tones. This already feels more up my alley than regular contouring, especially given my previous difficulty finding a bronzer that would work on my heinously pale skin. From there, Charlie explains the step-by-step process:
“Place your brush at the hairline, slightly off from the center of your forehead, and work your way down, over the temples, until you reach the highest point of the hollow of the eye socket.”
Then, he suggests lightly pursing your lips to raise your cheekbones and brushing the color down the hollows of your cheeks “until the brush is vertical with the end of your eye.” Finish by dusting the color around the sides of the face, and add a highlighter to all of the usual places (forehead, bridge of the nose, cheekbones, and just below the contoured area).
Sounds simple enough, right? I mean, I love looking sculpted and awake, so I’ll probably end up giving it a try eventually. But here’s the thing: Other than the fact that you’re supposed to use more neutral contouring colors instead of just straight-up bronzer, I kinda don’t see how this is different than normal contouring. I suppose it’s a little bit less severe but isn’t severity kind of the point? I mean, when I think contouring, I don’t necessarily think “subtle.” But, hey, like I said, I won’t knock it ’til I try it. After all, this is how I usually feel after contouring anyway:
Looks like we’re going on another beauty adventure, friends!
Iskra Banović is our seasoned Editor-in-Chief at BlueFashion. She has been steering the website’s content and editorial direction since 2013. With a rich background in fashion design, Iskra’s expertise spans across fashion, interior design, beauty, lifestyle, travel, and culture.