Contour and highlight

Blush, Bronzer, and Contour 101

Next in this super fun Makeup 101 series is…drumroll, please…Blush, Bronzer, and Contour 101.

I’m so excited to share these makeup tips, as I feel they’re something that can seem a little confusing initially. We often wonder, “Should I use blush OR bronzer? Or do I need them together? What even is contouring?!” But not to worry, this will be covered thoroughly.

By the end of this post, you’ll be a master of blush, bronzer, and contour!

Or…at least, know what to do with them. 😉

Let’s start with their uses:


You know when it’s cold (or warm) outside and you get an appealing flush on your cheeks? This is exactly what blush helps you with, without needing to be exposed to extreme temperatures.

Keep in mind that without bronzer or contour, blush can look very child-like or doll-esque. It’s flattering on nearly all faces (if not on everyone), but I recommend only using blush by itself if you are younger and pairing it with bronzer/contour if you’re older.

Blush is mainly applied to the cheeks, lightly on the chin and forehead, and can even be brushed across the nose if you feel that’s your style.

Stoneham wedding makeup

Shooting Star Photography


If you have…Neutral Undertones: Nude Blush

If you have…Cool Undertones: Pink Blush

If you have…Warm Undertones: Peach Blush


This makes you look like you are tan or “sun-kissed”. It basically adds a little pop of color/dimension to your face, if you get the right tone. I recommend 1-2 shades darker than your natural skin tone, but never more than this, as it may stand out a little too much.

Bronzer is generally applied to the corners of the forehead, on top of or beneath the cheekbones (depending on your preference/facial structure), and the jawline…and can even be applied gently to the nose.


Many people believe bronzer and contour are the same, or they’re not sure the distinction between the two. In my experience, it’s been found that bronzer is good for adding a sunny glow to certain parts of the face (and can often be either shimmery or matte, as well as warmer in tone), whereas contour comes in a variety of tones (warm or cool, depending on what you choose), is almost always matte, and is used to sculpt facial features. Concealer can be used in assistance with contouring as well. General idea to remember:


Contour and highlight


Dark contour shades are typically applied across the very top of the forehead, underneath the cheekbones, down the sides of the nose, on the cupid’s bow, and jawline. Lighter contour shades (or concealer, which I prefer) is typically applied underneath the eyes, down the center of the nose, in the middle of the forehead, on smile lines, and lightly on the chin.

Now, let’s move onto formulas. There’s 3 that I know of: Cream, Powder, and Liquid. You can easily select which will work best for you, depending on your skin type. I recommend Cream Blush/Bronzer/Contour for combination skin that leans on the drier side, Powder for oily skin, and Liquid for dry skin.

The possibilities are endless!

With so many makeup options today, you’re sure to find something you love. Also, keep in mind: NONE of these are a requirement. If you prefer blush with/without bronzer, contour or no contour, to use bronzer or to not use bronzer…its up to you!

…And that concludes the Blush, Bronzer, and Contour 101 post! If you have any other questions, feel free to let me know in the comments and I will get back to you ASAP! If you have any other in-depth Blush, Bronzer, and Contour questions, consider booking a makeup lesson with me. You can contact me at with all makeup-related inquiries. 🙂

Thanks for reading!


~ Nancy

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