The Best Cream Contour Sticks

If you’re looking for a way to sculpt and define your face then look no further than contouring. Search the term #Contour on Instagram alone and it comes up with over 6 million results, that doesn’t include the other variations of #Contouring, #ContourTutorial or #ContourPalette which have a combined result of over 2.6 million posts. Not surprisingly, the popularity of contouring products have boomed, with contour sticks being the go-to for beauty fans for their ease and flawless finish. Join us as we look into exactly what a contour stick is, how they’re used, and what your shade should be.

What is a contour stick?

The biggest misconception is that bronzer is the go-to product for contouring. While it can help to give that sun kissed look, the purpose of contouring is to give your face a sculpted look, helping to achieve those not-so-natural shadows, making your cheekbones and jawlines (amongst other areas) pop. Contour sticks simply work as a cream product (just like a cream blush) that is carefully swiped over various places on your face and blended to give the illusion of depth and dimension.

How do I use a contour stick

You’ve probably by now seen countless ‘get ready with me’ videos all over social media, where the person in front of the camera looks like they’ve drawn on their face with a bronze marker. While it can often look a bit strange, applying a cream contour stick in specific places across the face really helps to achieve those shadows we mentioned earlier. The key places these should be applied include cheekbones, temples and hairline (forehead), nose and jawline, then as with the cream blush – blend, blend, blend!

How do I blend my contour?

The most popular ways of blending contour include using a brush, sponge or your fingers. Our approach is varied at Beauty Answers HQ, while some wouldn’t use anything other than a Beauty Blender, others reach for a brush every time to blend out the harsh lines of the products. Using your fingers isn’t as common for blending contour, but the warmth between your face and fingers helps to blend the product that you can’t achieve via the other two methods – just remember to wash your hands before you start to keep any germs away from your face. If you find you’ve overdone it a bit on the product, it’s easy to bring it back by continuing to blend (in circular motions) and using your foundation brush or sponge again to tone it down. Practice really does make perfect.

How do I know my contour stick shade?

A one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work for everyone when it comes to contour. As we want to mimic those natural shadows, a shade 2-3 darker than your skin tone is what you should aim for, and remember some people’s may change as the season’s change. Make sure it has a similar undertone as yours too. Not all brands have great colour range, so its worth shopping around to find the one most suitable for you.

Take a look at some of our favourite contour sticks

Fenty Beauty Match Stix Contour Skinstick

Rihanna created Fenty Beauty with the promise of inclusion for all. This Fenty Match Stix is creamy and great for precise application on cheeks, nose and jawline. It blends well and comes in a great selection of tones to suit a multitude of skin tones. One of our most reached for products at Beauty Answers HQ.

Charlotte Tilbury Contour Wand

Not many people know how to create a make-up kit quite like Charlotte Tilbury. This Contour Wand is another one that should live in your make up bag as standard. It’s perfectly lightweight, buildable and blends well to create depth to your face.

Clinique Chubby Stick Sculpting Curvy Contour

Skincare favourites Clinique created their chubby Stick Sculpting Curvy Contour Stick to help define your favourite features, adding depth to your face where it may not naturally occur. The oil-free product is long-lasting and gives a natural appearance. It also twists to allow access to the product, so no need to find a giant sharpener – phew!

NARS Cosmetics The Multiple

A multi-purpose stick that can be used on your eyes, lips, cheeks or your body, the NARS Cosmetics The Multiple is the all-in-one product for your make up bag. It features a sheer shimmer which may not be for everyone, but is designed to last. Similar to Fenty’s Match Stix and the Clinique Chubby Stick, it twists to allow access to the product, and can be blended easily by a brush or your fingers.

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