One of our favorite things about makeup is that it’s so versatile and it can completely alter the dimensions of your face. Depending on your preference… A smaller nose? Bigger eyes? More defined cheekbones? Anything is possible, you just need to know which areas to emphasize with a little contour or highlight in the right places. You can completely change the size or shape of your nose, it’s totally up to you! So here’s a quick roundup of our go-to nose contouring tricks:
1. Prep Your Base
Before you even think about contouring your nose, you need to prep and prime your base for flawless application. We recommend priming with an oil-free, mattifying primer, like the Huda Beauty Matte Perfection Pre-Makeup Base, $32. We always choose a matte primer as your nose tends to get oily throughout the day. Once you’ve applied the primer, follow with a matte foundation and then set it with a setting powder – et voila. Time to contour.
2. Layer the contour
If you layer your contour you’ll help to enhance definition and balance out the symmetry of your nose. Start with cream contour, followed by a powder – you can always use a dark brown eyeshadow or a contour palette, whatever you have to hand. Ashier tones will look more natural, so try and avoid anything with an orange undertone. The cream will create a base shadow and the powder will help blend the shades so it looks more natural. However, if you want a subtler shadow, then just stick with a powder and skip the cream contour.
3. Blend, blend, blend
The number one rule when it comes to contour is blending. You can have a perfectly chiseled nose face-on, but you don’t want to turn to the side and have a heavily contoured profile – it’s a total giveaway. Blend inwards towards the center of your nose as this will make your nose appear narrower.
For a more natural look, once you’ve blended your contour, you can apply another very light layer of foundation. This will create the illusion of a shadow rather than obvious contouring. But be careful; you only to apply a thin layer – we actually blend it out on our hand and then transfer the product to our nose.
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4. Start at the brows
Always start your contour at the front of the brow, working downwards towards the tip: this will help ensure that both sides are equal, so you don’t end up with a wonky nose! Continue your contour to the very bottom of your nose, just above where your nostrils begin. This will help it appear slimmer.
5. Play with your brows
This hack is both simple and effective: To make your nose look slimmer, bring your brows in closer toward your nose. In the picture above, we’ve digitally edited the image and taken off the inner part of the brow to highlight how closer-together-brows can make your nose appear narrower.
6. Get the snatched effect
To make your nose appear thinner, you can apply a concealer that’s roughly two shades lighter than your natural skin tone on either side of your nose. By highlighting this are, it’ll make your nose look more slender. To heighten this contrast, set it with a bright setting powder.
7. Straighten out a bump in your nose
While quirks like this can add character to your face, if you’d like to hide it then you can use a little bronzer to disguise it. By adding a matte bronzer or an ashy contour shade on the bump, it’ll visually flatten the bump to create the illusion of a straighter nose. Then finish with a little highlight on the tip of your nose, which will draw attention away from the bump.
8. Skip the highlight
If you have a rounded nose or a nose that’s slightly larger at the tip, don’t apply highlighter here (highlighter is used to draw attention to areas). Instead, use a shimmered bronzer to the very center of the nose, above the bump. This will draw the eye to the slenderest area rather than the biggest. We’ve digitally enhanced the image above to make the nose look slightly enlarged at the bottom, so you can see how a little highlight (right image) in the right place can go a long way.
Clever tips to draw attention away from the nose:
Think about your hair: Your hairstyle can make a huge difference to the dimensions of your face. Putting highlights in your hair can draw attention away from the face and nose, while a side parting can also make a larger nose appear smaller. However, bangs accentuate the middle of the face, making your nose appear bigger. Check out our guide for hairstyles to flatter your face shape here.
Go for a bold eye: A dramatic eye will draw attention away from the nose, so don’t be afraid to accentuate your eye with an elongated wing or a pair of lashes.
Let us know if you’ve tried any of these nose contouring hacks in the comments below.