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5 Makeup Tips Based on Your Face Shape

face shapes, triangle face, heart face
Two common face shapes, triangle and heart. Photo credit: Stomp.com

Have you ever wondered why a friend’s pair of sunglasses look spectacular on her but make you look bug-eyed when you try them?  It is probably because your basic face shape is different than hers.  (If you want to style your hair to flatter your face, read:  How to Style Hair Based on Your Face Shape)

Today you can find your basic face shape, as well as discover how to accentuate it with makeup. Keep reading to discover what your shape is.

5 Makeup Tips Based on Your Face Shape

To discover your shape, take a dry erase marker and head to a mirror.  Get up close and personal with your mirror, and carefully outline the shape of your face on the mirror.  Once you have done this, take a step back and look at the outline.  What shape do you see?

The five basic shapes are: round, triangle, square, oval and heart.

Once you have identified your overall shape, find it in the list below to read the specifics of how to flatter your individuality!  (Read: What’s Your Face Shape)

1. Round Face

A round face is identified by its softer angles, wider cheekbones, and equally wide forehead and jaw.

To help elongate and make your face appear thinner, definitely use contouring techniques. Use a highlighter on the bridge of the nose, middle of the forehead and even on your cupids bow (the skin right above your top lip line) to achieve this effect.

Apply a darker contour color just under your cheekbone (make a pucker face to find the hollow of your cheeks and apply here). (Read:  How to Contour Your Face Like a Pro)

Instead of applying blush on the apples of your cheeks, which actually makes your face look fuller, try applying the color to the top of cheekbones.  Using an angled blush brush, start on the outer edge near your hairline and sweep the color in a downward motion on the cheekbone, just barely ending before the apples of your cheeks.  Not only will this lift your entire face, but it will give you a glowing complexion.

Check out Miss Louisiana, Justine Ker’s headshot.  See how the apples of her cheeks don’t have much color?  She is a classic example of a round face shape.

miss louisiana 2016, Miss America, headshot, Justine Ker
Justine Ker, Miss Louisiana 2016 headshot, a great example of a round face. Photo credit: missamerica.org

2. Triangle Shape

Specifically, this is referring to a triangle shape that is defined by a wider jaw than forehead, gradually narrowing in shape through the forehead and temples.

Try blending a paler foundation just above your eyebrows up to your hairline to create width across your forehead.

To create more focus on the upper half of your face and to balance out your jawline, use dark eye shadow to create a dramatic eye, subtly blending the color out into a cat-shape to again create more width on the upper half.  Try using a dark kohl eyeliner to amp up your eyes.

Macy Christianson, Miss North Dakota 2016, has a beautiful jawline.  Notice how she accentuated her eye makeup to draw attention to the upper half of her face, creating balance in her overall appearance?

Triangle face, miss north dakota, miss america
Macy Christianson, Miss North Dakota 2016 expertly drawing attention to her beautiful eyes. Photo credit: www.missamerica.org

3. Square Face

This face is angular in nature and has equally wide widths in the forehead, jaw and cheekbones. One variation of this shape is a longer, rectangular version. Essentially, the key component of this face shape is equal widths among the features of your face.

The goal with makeup for this particular shape will be to soften the angular lines and create the appearance of a more narrow jawline. After applying foundation, dust highlighter under the eyes, the tip of the nose, the end of your chin, and in the center of your forehead. This will make these areas pop out more, creating softer angles.

Your eyes can definitely handle an intense smoky eye color, but concentrate the darkest color on the outer corner of the eye and use a lighter shade on the inner corner. This will attract more attention to the center of your face, as will using a dark eye liner on the waterline.

Catherine Klattrup is the current Miss Denmark of the Miss Global Beauty Queen Organization. Not only does she have stunning prominent features, but her rectangular face shape is softened slightly with artfully applied highlighter along with dramatic waterlined eyes.

Miss Denmark Global Beauty, Cathrine Klattrup
Cathrine Klattrup’s stunning features pop with a little use of highlighter and dark-rimmed eyes. Photo Courtesy of www.missglobalbeauty.org

4. Oval Face

Similar in overall shape to a round face, this common face shape has slightly wider cheekbones than a rounded face, with a slight narrowing at the forehead and jaw.

Due to the fact that oval faces are fairly proportional, you definitely can play up eyes or lips, just don’t emphasize both at the same time. Pick either a bold lip or a bold eye, but stick to one or the other.

Instead of contouring with a matte dark color, try a dusting of a slightly shimmery bronzer to play up your face shape. Using an angled brush, dust the bronzer along cheekbones as well as the temples (just between eyebrows and hairline). You won’t need much to do the trick.

A great example of an oval face is Nadia Mejia, Miss California USA 2016. In this picture, she exemplifies the idea of accentuating either eyes or lips, as she demonstrates with her smoky eye and nude lip combo.

Nadia Mejia, Miss California USA, Miss USA
Miss California USA 2016, Nadia Mejia, beautifully showing an intense eye with a nude lip. Photo credit: Glenn Francis

5. Heart Shape

A heart face shape is widest at the forehead and gradually narrows through the jaw, usually coming to a point at the chin. I cannot help but think of the iconic Reese Witherspoon when I think of an example of a heart face shape.

With your already defined cheekbones, you don’t need much contouring. However, try playing up this feature by choosing a bronzer just a few shades darker than your natural skin tone and brushing it along the line of your cheekbone.

Another way to help balance the proportions of a heart-shaped face is to use a uniform palette of nude colors on your face, specifically the cheeks and lips. The neutral tones will downplay the sharp angular planes of the face, and ensure that not one feature is more prominent than another.  Instead of shimmering nudes, try matte shades to create this balance.

One last trick is to use extra fluttery eye lashes, even just applying a demi-false lash strip to the outer corners of your upper eyelids. Since your face is already angular, the fluttery lashes will create a softer look, drawing focus away from the forehead and chin.

Miss Oklahoma 2016, Sarah Klein, is another example of a heart face shape, and she expertly used the idea of fluttery eyelashes to create a softer look to her features.

Miss Oklahoma, Miss America, Sarah Klein
Miss Oklahoma 2016 Sarah Klein shows how a fluttery eyelash can soften angular features. Photo credit: www.missamerica.org

Want to know more ways to flatter your face shape?  (Read:  How to Shape Your Eyebrows Based on Your Face Shape.)

I hope you have picked up a few ideas on how to accentuate your assets. If you have any questions, leave them in the comments section below!

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