CONTOURING

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By Anna Bielkheden

Instagram Vs. Real Life

These days we are bombarded with a sea of images with everything from people’s dinner plates to landscapes and beauty. Some of the more popular pages are those of makeup application techniques. Being a makeup artist, I obviously find these very interesting and many times also inspiring.

There are some things I’d like to point out however, being a makeup artist who often work with reality television and things like red carpet events – or simply everyday people.

The first thing is, that what looks flawless with some Photoshop and the correct lighting, doesn’t always look that great in real life. Heavy contouring is one of those things. I bet you’ve seen the jaw-dropping transformations where the before and after pictures look like different people? Well, put that person right in front of you, and I can tell you without hesitation it will not look as great. Contouring is mainly done for photo shoots, where the photographer and makeup artists know there will be strong, specific lighting which washes out the features. In addition, pictures will be edited nearly one hundred percent of the time. So yes, of course it does look good when you run a professional Instagram page and use a plethora of apps and take hundreds of pictures before you get the right one.

But let me give you one piece of professional advice:

Go light on the contouring. Use it sparingly, with barely there makeup which looks good even when you step out in daylight. Even if you’re going to a club – remember there will be occasions when you find yourself standing in bright light and you want the makeup, while perhaps heavier than normal, to look somewhat natural.

The second thing I’d like to bring up is close up makeup photos.

Often times I look at pictures of eye makeup, which are simply stunning – as an art. There is a difference between makeup as an art, and makeup for beauty. When I work with someone for the red carpet or similar, I want the makeup to bring out the client’s features – not for the focus to be on the makeup. So just be aware, that if you attempt a makeup look that looks crazy gorgeous in a close up photo, that you don’t lose your self in the details and forget the bigger picture. You want to bring out you, not your eye shadow or your faded brows.

This is just my advice as a makeup artist, but of course you should still make your own decisions as to what you want to look like! Makeup is fun, makeup is art, and it is beauty. But don’t forget that the most stunning makeup in the world isn’t as beautiful as YOU. And that’s what matters most, at least to me.


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