my contour and highlight routine

Almost Couture Manchester Fashion Blog

A good foundation routine is like wearing a good pair of Spanx under a bodycon dress: imperative. Without a great looking base, the rest of your makeup will look disproportionate and amateur, and no-one wants that. I have pretty uneven skin thanks to patchy fake tan (damn you, St Moriz), freckles and breakouts, so I like my foundation routine to be high coverage and to stay in place all day.

Disclaimer: Before anyone starts thinking ‘hey girl: less is more’: this foundation and contour routine isn’t my everyday look, as there’s a few more steps than I would usually use (who has the time to slap all this on when nipping to Asda for a bottle of wine?). I’d recommend this look for evening, with a smokey eye and a bold lip colour. 

1. Make sure your face is clean, dry and moisturized. I’ve used Garnier Intensive 7 Day Ultra Replenishing Moisturizer on my face and neck about an hour ago, so it has ample time to soak in.


2. Using Collection’s Illuminating Touch Concealer in Naked and a Primark Stippling Brush, I conceal all of my redness and blotches (i.e – my entire face), and then buff it out. (When the label on your concealer has worn off, it’s time to buy a new one. I’m gross.)


3.  I then take my MAC 150 Foundation Brush and my absolute favourite foundation: Rimmel 25 Hour Lasting Finish in 201 Classic Beige. I apply a thin coat of the foundation to my face and onto my neck.



4. Using my Real Techniques Contour Brush and my Sleek Face Contour Palette, I take the darkest colour and blend it down my cheekbones from my hairline. Using the Liz Earle Blend & Contour Brush and the darkest contour shade, I blend the powder down each side of my nose and across the tip.


5. Next, I take my Yves Saint Laurent Touche Eclat in Radiant and my Primark Beauty Blend Sponge. This is much pinker, brighter concealer than the Collection one used earlier. I highlight under my eyes, down my nose, across my forehead and my chin, and blend this out with the sponge.


6. Taking a Sephora Blending Brush and some loose Ben Nye Luxury Banana Powder, I set the concealer on my nose, chin and under my eyes. (Ben Nye is hard to work with as it comes in a tub, so I like to use an old compact lid to tip the powder into. It makes it much more workable and it doesn’t get everywhere as easily.)


7. Next, using a MAC 134 Large Face Brush and some Natural Collection Face Powder in Warm, I swirl the powder in circular motions over my face, setting my makeup. I like this powder as it’s super cheap and sets makeup nicely, without being too pigmented and making my face orange.


8. Time for blush and bronze. Using a Chanel Blush Brush and my favourite blusher in the whole world, Nars Blush in Orgasm, I give the apples of my cheeks colour and work it up towards my hairline, along the contour lines we blended in earlier. Then I take my Liz Earle Radiant Glow Bronzer, which is a lovely quad of shimmery and matte bronzes, and apply it on my forehead, down the sides of my head and under my chin for a sunkissed glow.


9. Once the rest of my makeup is completed, I take my Laura Mercier Finishing Brush and the remainder of the Ben Nye Banana Powder and swirl it over my face, setting my makeup for one last time and giving it a lovely airbrushed look. (Usually I would use the Ben Nye Translucent Face Powder or the Becca Translucent Finishing Powder for this step, but I’ve run out, and a girl’s gotta improvise).


This foundation routine is pretty heavy, but perfect for special occasions or nights out. I used to be a really heavy contour-er (is that a word?), I’m using a bronzer on my forehead and jawline now instead of the darker contour powder.


The rest of my makeup look is the Collection Eyebrow Palette, Topshop Lipstick in Nevada, Nars Narcissist Eyeshadow (various shades), Rimmel Gel Eyeliner in Black, and Sephora Outrageous Volume Mascara in Waterproof Black. 

Have you got any sneaky foundation routine tips you’d love to share?

You may be poor, but you can still look pretty.



13 thoughts on “my contour and highlight routine

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