How to Highlight, Blush and Contour the Face

Beauty gurus on YouTube make highlighting, contouring and applying blush look like a totally complicated process when, in reality, that’s not the case at all.

I promise you, it’s not as complicated as it looks. Practice makes perfect, and I’m here to give you insight as to how you can nail the highlight/blush/bronzer trend whether you have experience with makeup or are just starting out.




You can’t go wrong with highlighting; it’s the easiest step of the three I’m blogging about today.

Highlighting is meant to empathize and draw attention to protruding points of the face (cheekbone, brow bone, cupid’s bow, nose and chin).

Highlighting is the easiest step because all highlighting products are opaque, meaning they leave very subtle and natural traces of sheer pigment on the skin. Essentially, highlight isn’t super defined, so there’s really no such thing as messing up.

How to highlight:

20170201_0937351. I want you to run your fingers on the bones about an inch under your eyes; those are called your cheekbones. That’s where highlight goes.

2. Take any highlight of your choice and swipe the pretty shimmer on the most protruding parts of your cheekbones. For example, in the picture I featured in this section, you can see that my highlight starts at my pupil and ends where my eyebrow tapers off.

3. Next, I like to run a gentle finger with a delicate amount of highlighter down my nose. I also like to apply a little bit of highlighter on my cupid’s bow (the top edge of a person’s upper lip) and chin.

If you are in need of a great highlighter, I recommend:

  • Drugstore highlighter:
    • e.l.f. Baked Highlighter ($2.99 – Target)
  • High-end highlighter:
    • Watt’s Up by Benefit Cosmetics ($30 – Sephora)


Applying blush to my face is one of my favorite steps; adding a little flush to the cheeks can make your face appear so much more lively, and it gives your face a little bit of glow.

Blush isn’t what you think it is. If you’re worried about having “clown cheeks,” don’t worry. You will not get super rosy, overbearing cheeks unless you use an overpowering blush. Most blushes today come in beautiful shimmery pinks, peaches and corals that suit every skin tone perfectly. Plus, blush is very easy to apply and it’s quite hard to mess up.

How to apply blush:


1. Smile. See the parts of your cheek that rise up and make a ball? Those are called the apples of your cheeks, and that’s exactly where blush goes. Pretty easy, huh?

2. Take a fluffy makeup brush and tap it gently onto a blush of your choice. Lightly swipe it onto the apples of your cheeks until you end up with a light flush.


In need of a quality blush? I recommend:

  • Drugstore blush:
    • Maybelline Dream Bouncy Blush in “Coffee Cake” ($10 – Walmart)
  • High-end blush:
    • CORALista Box o’Powder Blush by Benefit Cosmetics ($29 – Sephora)


I swear to you all, I used to be deathly afraid of contouring. Whenever I’d attempt to put a little bronzer on my face, I’d end up looking like a Jersey Shore cast member.

Finally, I decided to start practicing, and I’m so glad I did because contouring has made a world of a difference. Contouring requires practice, patience and a light hand. If I can do it, you can do it too.

How to contour:

I’d like to take the time to say that shadows in this picture make my contour look too defined; I promise you it’s just the lighting.

1. Make the “fish face” (a.k.a. sucking in your cheeks to the point where you look like a fish). Take note of the parts of your cheeks that are sunken in. That’s where you will be applying bronzer.

2. Take any contouring brush or any round (not fluffy) medium-sized brush, and lightly dip the brush into the bronzer of your choice.

3. Using a light hand, apply the bronzer to the parts of your face that were sucked in while doing the “fish face.” Use extremely light motions when using the brush to apply bronzer to the contours of your cheeks. Blend as much as needed.

4. Once you’ve practice enough on the cheeks, you can start to expand your contouring expertise to other parts of the face like the forehead. To contour the forehead, lightly buff bronzer near the temples of your head.

If you are in need of a quality good bronzer, check out these products that I adore:

  • Drugstore bronzer:
    • NYC Smooth Skin Bronzing Powder in “Sunny” ($5 – Walmart)
  • High-end bronzer:
    • Benefit Cosmetics Hoola Matte Bronzer ($29 – Sephora)


Thank you so much for taking the time to read my blog. Your support means so much to me!

From now on, I’ll be posting on a weekly basis every Thursday. In addition, there may be times where I post two times a week. You can expect to see those posts on either Monday or Tuesday. If I post two times a week, I’ll let you know on my Instagram account.

If you aren’t following me on Instagram, find me @makeup.kara.

Thanks again!




7 thoughts on “How to Highlight, Blush and Contour the Face

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