Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Questions I Ask Myself: Does contouring my nose mean I have to hate it?

Kevyn Aucoin diagram on contouring and highlighting. 
For those of you new to contouring, in a nutshell it is a way to enhance some features (which in turn downplays others) to give your face a more defined, attractive appearance. Essentially, shading provides the appearance of shadows and highlighting makes it look as though that plane is higher because the light is superficially hitting it first. I contour my face daily, but not nearly as drastically as some. And I don't tend to change my features so much as enhance what's there. I think how you choose to contour depends on your personal preference to a degree.

One area I constantly seem to waver on is my nose I know how to contour my nose to tweak its shape ... but do I really want to? Does it mean I hate my nose if I do? What if I like my nose?

These are the crazy-person thoughts that I ponder when debating whether or not I want to contour it. Naturally, the bridge of my nose isn't super wide, but it's not super thin. Between my Asian and Italian roots, the tip of my nose is slightly rounded and a little wide. I know many people prefer graceful, thin noses, but I've always liked noses with character. Personally, I'm sure if my nose was different in some ways I would probably like it less--if my nose was super bulbous or extremely hooked (like some family members) I would probably do what I could to change it, not that there's anything wrong with noses with these characteristics, but that would be my preference.  As it stands, I actually don't have an issue with my nose. In fact, when I play around with contouring it to make it a hair thinner down the bridge or slightly more pointed, I don't like the effect on my face. Maybe it's because I have a heart-shaped face and my slightly rounded nose suits it ... I'm not sure. Perhaps others disagree!

Personally, I think when it comes to contouring (as with just about anything else) it really comes down to proper application and personal preference. I don't think you have to go all out if you don't want to and it's fine if you do! Maybe you want to define your nose in such a way that it changes its shape. Maybe you don't. Maybe you only want to shave a hair off its width. Maybe you have a super thin nose and want to make it look a tad wider. I don't think you have to dislike your nose or cheeks or chin in order to want to change them a bit. I also don't think it's a bad thing if you do dislike one of your features and choose to manipulate it closer to what you prefer.

This is what I love about makeup! There is such an art to being able to manipulate, enhance or slightly beautify your face and features. Having control like that is just ... fun!

So what's your preference when it comes to contouring? Do you contour or do you prefer to leave your face as it is? Do you contour all of your features or just a few? Do you like to go all out or do you tend to slightly enhance what you have? Inquiring minds want to know!

Here's a pic I recently posted for the 50's inspired Memorial Day look I created. I have not contoured my nose here (just my forehead, cheeks, jawline, etc.).  


  1. I'm pretty new to contouring... partially because I read once that its not necessary for day-to-day wear, and its on of those things that "only models need to do." Since its becoming so much more popular though, and I'm looking into it more, I feel like it does make such a huge difference in the appearance of your face, and not just in terms of thinning out the bridge of your nose, or hollowing your cheeks. It just seems to enhance everything. Foundation flattens everything, and a little contouring helps bring out everything that you already have. For me, anyway. Obviously, you can change the look of your face if you are skilled enough/have enough time.
    For me though, I DO hate my nose! but I'm too chicken to try and really contour it. Perhaps when I find the right product...

    1. I think it depends on your face, too. If you have extreme features, you may feel more comfortable not contouring on a daily basis. My face is a tad flat naturally, so I do find that contouring helps that a bit. I can't wear foundation daily because of my sensitive skin, but I do contour daily--ironically! Have you tried any of the MAC pro sculpting pans? They are very popular contour shades!


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