One thing we can all agree on: when we found out Kim Kardashian West was launching her own beauty line, makeup lovers, Kardashian fans, beauty editors, and myself alike, all held our breath in anticipation. Whatever she was going to release, we wanted it… and then we found out we could get our hands on a slice of her contour and everyone was hooked. I mean Kim is known for her flawless complexion, and with legendary makeup artist Mario, they kinda put contouring on the map, in a big way! So, it made sense for her to start her beauty collection with a complexion kit. When I recently arrived in LA to find the entire KKW Crème Contour and Highlight Kit collection was waiting for me, I was as eager as you to try these out. After hearing a bunch of mixed reviews, I wanted to see for myself exactly how the KKW Crème Contour Sticks would work, so here’s my experience and honest review.
What it is: A contouring and highlighter kit that comes with a dual-ended blending tool. The contour stick has two deep shades, while the highlighter stick has a matte concealer and a shimmering highlighter. The blending tool has a soft, flat brush at one end and a firm makeup sponge at the other.
What it does: The kit is designed to create a subtle, buildable contour to be applied after foundation and concealer. Both the contour and highlighter sticks have slim bullets that make precision application easy for contouring the face and nose. The matte highlighter shade can also be used to prime your eyelids, conceal, and of course, highlight the high points of your face.
What we liked: My initial thoughts were of course about the packaging – I liked the solid, pale pink color, it’s pretty, chic and simple. Immediately it reminded me of Pat McGrath’ signature packaging, so I wish it could have been a bit more unique. I liked that for all four kits, there are two contour shades: an ashy contour for creating shadows under the cheeks and for nose contour, and a warmer bronzer shade, which works beautifully on the forehead or if you just feel like doing a more natural contour. When I first applied the contour stick it really made an impact – there’s a lot of pigment– and because the crème formula is quite oily, it blends out SO well. The only thing I will say, is you need to be very light handed when you blend because I found it almost blended out too well and it didn’t make as much impact as I like my contour to make. I thought the brush worked really well to blend the contour, although that could also be down to how easy the product is to blend.
What we didn’t like: The texture of the contour sticks meant I had to reapply it as it blended out too much. I also found that although I set it really well, by the end of the day, my skin looked a bit blotchy and the product had shifted (this never happens when I set my makeup). So, I think the oiliness of the product just meant that it didn’t sit well on my skin. I liked the matte highlighter shade; I just wish it had a little more coverage as, by itself, it didn’t have the effect that my usual concealer (Tarte Shape Tape) does for highlighting under my eyes. The shimmering highlighter applied really smoothly, and I used my fingers to dab these onto my cheek bones, but I wasn’t crazy about the shimmer shade selection in the kits. I feel like they could have been a little more golden, especially for the darker contour sticks, as darker skin tones tend to have more olive undertones and gold has a much more complementary effect. The sponge was okay and although I liked using it, I wish it were bigger, as blending felt like a lot of work and I just feel my beautyblender can do the job much more efficiently.
Overall, I like the colors of the contour, and I’ll try using them again with a different blending method that cuts back on the need to use as much product. Hopefully, this will also mean that it doesn’t shift throughout the day. Regarding the price: it’s expensive, but then you’re getting a highlighter, concealer, two contour shades, and a blending tool. So, if this product works for you, then it’s a worthwhile investment.
Available: KKWBeauty.com (currently sold out)