this is probably a dumb question but what's the difference between bronzer and contour? like i get the importance of bronzer for lighter skin tones, but i'm south asian with a tan complexion so i was just wondering if i even need bronzer? i hope that made any sense. thank you for your help!
Bronzer isn’t for just lighter skin tones. Bronzer is supposed to emulate when you get more tan. So the soft warm color the sun makes around your face and across your nose bridge when you’re more tan. That happens to people of all skin tones! :)
Bronzer is always warmer in tone. Depending on your skin tone you might need something with a pink/red undertone or a golden/orange undertone. My overall skin tone runs more golden so I tend to pick bronzers that are golden undertone. Most of the time pink/red undertones look a bit fake looking.
Contour is used to “carve” and mimic shadows. Shadows are neutral to cool toned. So when you’re wearing a contour product and you turn your face from side to side it’s supposed to look like a natural shadow carving out your facial features.
Contour on your cheeks is usually placed under your cheekbone to further enhance the bone “popping” out. If you have a more flat/round face it can add more angular shapes to it. It is usually one or two shades darker than your skin tone. So when you look at makeup like Drag makeup, they often do more theatrical contouring. So they use shades that are sometimes 3-4 shades darker then their natural skin tone. Then they place it under their cheek bones, sides of the nose, under the jawline.
Contour and bronzer aren’t always treated as separate things though. Sometimes people interchange the actual product for how they use them. That’s usually when the bronzer or contour is more on the neutral side. You can kind of get away with switching it up! :) Personally, I don’t own a proper contouring product because everything I have is a bit on the warm side even though it’s labeled as “contour”. So I just kind of use the bronzer/contour stuff I have to warm up my face and add a little more depth- generally.
Often times if you’re wearing a super full coverage foundation and concealer all over your entire face it can really flatten your face out and make it look one dimensional. Thats why some people tend to load up on the contour/bronzer, to bring that dimension back. Usually, the perimeter of your face is a tad darker than the center so if you really work to sheer out your foundation as you get to the perimeter, you might not need to even go back in with bronzer/contour. This is because you will have maintained that natural darkness around your face.
I hope this helps! It’s kind of something that you’ll understand more, the more you practice and study the other way people do makeup!