When I started taking in clients for makeup application I noticed the highlight and contouring trend was here to stay. Every client wanted to have a sculpted face, which I was happy to give them. My contouring and highlighting skills progressed tremendously with every client and they were very satisfied with the results, but somehow I wasn’t. I was happy that my clients were elated with their look, but I found the contouring and highlighting process to be a bit tedious to be honest. There was so much blending involved to ensure the face didn’t look to muddy and I was spending loads of money on different products as I just couldn’t find a “one size fits all” type of product. Now of course, we are all made differently and don’t have similar undertones, skin tone etc, but there had to be an easier way I thought to myself ( these are the questions that keep me up at night !).
A few months into my new career and I stumble upon the Smashbox Contour Stick Trio at my local drugstore. I asked the cosmetics lady for a wipe so I can sanitize the sticks as I wanted to test them out on myself. I applied the highlight to my forearm and blended them out with a Q-tip. I was really impressed with how easy it was to blend out the product so I was instantly sold on them.
The Smashbox Step-By-Step Contour Sticks contain one contour stick, one highlight stick and one bronzer , are cruelty free and are best for light to medium skin tones. The package contains a step by step guide on ” how to” contour using these sticks and ,oh yeah, Smashbox threw in a sharpener with the package.
The sticks are very creamy in texture and are easy to blend out with a brush or a sponge. Since the product is a stick format you hold it like a pencil and draw out your contour how you like it. Same principle is to be applied to the highlighter and bronzer. It’s best to blend out the product with a damp beauty blender as I find you have more control of the blending.
So here are the pros of this product .The contour sticks are extremely easy to use and help ease the intimidation that some ladies feel when it comes to contouring. Even a novice can sculpt their face with them! They are good for travel as they don’t take up a lot of space in your bag and they blend like a dream! I can’t get over how easy they blend out. I always hear from people who when they first starting to contour the biggest challenge they faced was the blending of the product. You won’t have an issue with these sticks. They are so creamy that blending is effortless. Many Pro makeup artists have these sticks in their make up bag and for good reason.I find they cut down my contour application time immensely.
Here are the few cons with the contour sticks. I’ve run out of the contour and highlight stick before I run out of the bronzer all the time!. Smashbox doesnt’ sell these sticks separately wich I really don’t like because I use this product on ,almost, every client of mine and it would make more sense for me to only purchase the contour and highlight stick when I run out, instead, I have to buy the whole package. Not a huge deal but it irks me a bit. I’ve heard some people complain that if you blend the product out too much it almost disappears on the face once and if you apply powder. I personally haven’t experienced this on my clients or myself but a little trick you can try if you do decide to try out this product, is to apply powder in the similar shade on top of the cream contour( after blending). This will not only make the contour more prominent but it will make it last longer. It is not necessary to apply powder over the cream contour but it’s recommended if you feel like the contour fades once you blend it out.
Just remember that you don’t want to have a straight line on your face, that’s not the point of a properly sculpted face. You do however want to give the illusion of shadows so blending is key to achieving this. It takes a bit of practise and eventually you will find a happy medium! Also, as much as I want to belive there is a universal product for us all this just isn’t the case with these contour sticks , or any product out there really. As I said earlier in the post, we all have different skin tones and undertones so if you are really fair or above medium dark this product wont’ work for you.
What are your go-to contouring and highlighting products ?
Disclaimer: I bought this product with my own money and was not compensated for this post.