You can change your eye shadow or foundation, but you can’t change your face shape! It’s a crucial element in your quest for beauty that you should know how to work with to amplify your gorgeousness. The great news is that using makeup correctly can enhance your natural features for maximum impact – and disguise any areas you want hidden!
Find Your Shape
Considering your face shape before you apply makeup helps you accentuate your face in the right ways. In fact, you should learn more about your face shape and what makeup suits it before you purchase your next batch of beauty products because you might be using the wrong ones that are doing your face no favors.
Of course, before you can start you need to know what your face shape is. Most specialists break up face shape categories into seven types:
Heart. This is where your cheekbones are wide like your hairline, but you have a narrow chin. A celebrity example is Katie Holmes.
Round. Your face has pretty much the same width and length all over, without any sharp corners. You probably have full, prominent cheeks. A celebrity example would be Kirsten Dunst.
Square. You have a long face shape that is even: the sides of your forehead and jawline are pretty much in line and your jawline is prominent. Sandra Bullock is an example.
Oval. Here, the width of your face is about one-third shorter than its length. Basically, your face will be a little narrower at your jawline than at your temples. An example is Kylie Minogue.
Diamond. Your face narrows towards your hairline and your jawline reaches a point at your chin, but your cheeks are wider. Think Linda Evangelista.
Oblong. You don’t really have corners (such as on your jawline) that stick out. Rather, your face is rounder at the top and bottom, creating a lengthened shape. An example is Liv Tyler.
Pear/Triangle. This is where your face shape is larger at the bottom and smaller on top. So, your jawline would be wider than your hairline. Kelly Osbourne is an example of a pear-shaped face, as is Victoria Beckham.
Got your shape? Great! Now here is a guide on how to accentuate your face shape with makeup.
One of the most striking features of the heart-shaped face is your prominent cheekbones. Play them up by placing bronzer in the hollow of your cheekbones and blush on the apples of your cheeks to draw a spotlight on them. Basically, whatever part of your cheek moves upwards when you smile, this is where your blush should go! Then, add a highlighter above your cheekbones to illuminate them.
With heart-shaped faces, you want to use soft colors, such as pink and peach tones, that are a little sheer. These are great for the eyelids and cheekbones as they subtly highlight them. You can also wear a bright color on your lips to balance out your face because you have a narrow chin. Avoid harsh eyeliner – keep it feathery as you don’t want defined lines that will be too severe when set against the angles of your face.
If you have a round face, bronzer is your new best friend because it helps to define your face. Use a bronzer that is a shade darker than your skin tone and a brightening highlighter that is a little lighter than your skin tone. Apply the bronzer from the middle of your cheek all the way up to your ear in a slanted line. You can purse your lips in a ‘fish face’ while doing this if it helps you follow the line. Then, use a highlighter over the top of your cheekbones to illuminate your contouring. Blend it well with a makeup brush.
To draw attention away from your round face shape, you want to play up your eyebrows. Don’t leave them looking flat as this just accentuates the roundness. Make them a little angular by accentuating their arches. Fill in your eyebrows with a brow gel to make them striking yet soft. Accentuate eyes with strong, deep eye liner. Unlike with heart-shaped faces, you want to create strong lines! Using a smoky eyeshadow on your eyes is also a winner to create greater definition.
If you have a square face, you have a long face with striking but full features without much definition in the cheek area. With your makeup you want to soften your face. This can be achieved with feminine, shimmery makeup textures. A light rosy blush is great on your cheeks, as are soft colors on your eyes and lips. When applying blush, do so right on the centre of your cheeks instead of underneath or on top as these will just elongate your face more. Cream consistencies work to create a soft and feminine look. Blend your foundation and blusher really well because if you don’t, this can actually enhance your square shape.
You want to avoid anything too harsh on your face, such as dark lip colors. Stick to gentle shades that have a sheerness to illuminate your face. Mascara is great as it opens up your eyes and gives you doll-like glamour, which also happens to be a beauty trend this spring.
If you have an oval face, you’re lucky that you can pull off a variety of looks. However, you want to reduce the length of your face to balance out your pretty features. A blush or bronzer should be applied across your cheeks to your temples to widen out your face.
You also want to bring greater definition to your chin area and you can do this by accentuating your lips so they steal the show. Line them with a pencil before blending in your lip color and choose a bold color. However, if you choose to accentuate your eyes then don’t highlight your lips simultaneously. The reason for this is that oval faces are in proportion from the jawline to the forehead. Choosing one feature to which you want to draw attention is much more effective otherwise nothing really gets noticed.
Diamond face shapes have a narrow forehead and are widest at the temples, so you want to increase the width of your forehead to balance the rest of your face. This can be done by softening the arches of your eyebrows so that they don’t look too harsh and following their natural line with a brow pencil in their natural color.
Use a highlighter or illuminating product on your chin and forehead, and add blush to your cheekbones to accentuate them. Blend the blush well with foundation that’s slightly darker than your skin underneath it. Don’t apply blusher to the hollows of your cheeks – you want to focus on the apples to accentuate the diamond shape of your face.
When using eye shadow, apply it all the way to the eye’s outer corner. This has a widening effect. A soft color, such as silver, applied all over the surface of your eyelids is great to make the area bigger and brighter. You can add a darker shade to the crease of your eye to open and elongate their shape. Apply a bit of highlighter above your top lip to add definition to the bottom part of your face.
Accentuating your eyes is a great tip if you have an oblong face. This helps to pull attention upwards and can be achieved with long lashes coated in mascara, using bright and colorful eye shadows, and wearing eye liner. Be bold with color but do so in small amounts so that you don’t clash with the angles of your long face.
You also want to make your face lookbroader and shorter like the oval face shape, so use a matte bronzing product along your hairline. Blend it down your forehead. The same bronzer must then be applied to the bottom of the chin to create harmony.
Bring your cheekbones to the fore by placing highlighter on their highest points and then adding blush to your cheeks. You basically want to achieve a glow to soften your features while accentuating their definition.
If your face is pear-shaped (otherwise known as triangular) you have a defined jawline that you want to soften. Contouring the rest of your face helps you draw attention to all the right places. Apply blush to your cheekbones to make them a greater focal point. Use foundation that’s a shade or two darker than your skin tone along your nose and diagonally from your earlobes to your chin to slim them. Use highlighter at the point of your chin to define it, as well as under your eyes, above your eyebrows and around your cheeks.
Wear bright eye-makeup so that you draw attention to the higher points of your face. When playing up your eyes, you should keep your lips neutral and soft. You want to avoid too much lip color as this draws attention to your chin. Instead of harsh lip liner or lipstick, consider a hydrating lip defining product to bring subtle color without the heaviness you’re trying to avoid.
Work with your face shape to bring out your most beautiful features. That’s what makeup should do, after all – highlight your natural beauty in the best way!
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