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Tuesday, 12 March 2013

How I Contour | Feat. Chanel Bronze Universal & Swatches

Chanel | Soleil Tan De Chanel - 'Bronze Universal' - £31 | Link

It was an exciting day when I first purchased Chanel's ever so famous 'Bronze Universal' let me tell you! I took it home, placed it delicately on my bathroom counter and cherished its very existence in my makeup collection, but there was one problem - I was at a complete loss of how best to use it. I googled it, I tweeted about it, and I googled it some more - but each time I'd receive a multitude of different answers of how best to apply it. The lady at the Chanel counter suggested I used a flat foundation brush to work it into the skin for contouring - and for a while that was the method I used. Although it worked, the method just didn't float my boat - it may have been the brush I was using but I felt as if I needed to test a slightly different approach. So, I took it upon myself to test and try all kinds of different ways of working with it until I settled upon one that worked for me and one that provided me with the best results. Mission accomplished. 

As some of you may know, I'm a massive fan of contouring. I naturally have quite defined cheekbones and they're something I like to accentuate more when I can - simply because they give my face definition and shape and they're a feature I feel I need to make the best of! I've been contouring for a few years now - ever since I first learnt 'the secret' (ooo 'the secret'..) of how to make your face appear more sculpted - my makeup collection is full of all sorts of highlighters, base products and sculpting essentials. Chanel's Bronze Universal provides the most natural looking 'skin-like' finish and works very well with my skin tone. Here's my step by step for my current contouring routine I use for my cheekbones..

1. Apply your base | I use Yves Saint Laurent's 'Touche Eclat' foundation in 'B40' and buff this into the skin using my Real Techniques Buffing Brush.  This is the only brush I find works with this foundation and together they are an absolute cosmetic dream team! This stage provides a flawless looking 'blank canvas' ready for sculpting (I apply a primer beforehand too - just to make sure my makeup is being applied on a clean, smooth base).

2 & 3. Chanel Bronze Universal | If you're unsure how or where to place the line of contour, a good way to find your natural cheekbone 'shape' is to simply pull a fish face. Not at all attractive but suck in your cheeks for a second and you'll notice where your natural line is (google this method if you're unsure!) You can see where I've placed my line of contour - I always begin near my hairline and apply most of the product here, as this is where I want my contour to be strongest and where there is naturally more shadow on the face. I then take the product down near to wear my inner cheek is - making sure that the line there is slightly thinner than it is near to my hairline. 

I do this using my fingers or a flat foundation brush - but if I'm honest I find using my fingers to apply this works better than a brush - as the product is warmed up and can be moulded into the skin more (of course if you're going to do it this way then it goes without saying to make sure you're hands are squeaky clean before doing this step..)

4. Buffing using Real Techniques Buffing Brush | Buff the line you have just made into the skin using a buffing brush - making sure the movements you use are along the same 'line'. You don't want to be swirling the brush all over your cheeks as this will ruin the whole effect!

5. Mac Mineralise Skinfinsh Natural in 'Medium' | I then apply my Mac MSF using my Real Techinques powder brush. This sets the base I have just applied.  As a general rule, any 'wet' product you apply to your face should be applied before your powder - and any powder products applied afterwards. You know it makes sense... ;)

6. Optional Step - Sleek Contour Kit in 'Light' | Sometimes, the contour I created with the Chanel is enough for me. On other occasions, I want a little bit more 'oomph' (nights out for example) - this is when I apply the matte bronzing powder from this palette. I use my Real Techniques Contouring brush to do this as i find it works well with my powder products, and simply go over the line I've just created, being careful to blend it in properly. It can sometimes look a little 'muddy' if you over apply so paler skin tones - take heed! I then apply the highlighting powder across the top of my cheekbones (just underneath the eye area) and sweep this up to my hairline. 

7. Blush | I apply my blush of choice on the apples of my cheeks and take it up slightly near my hairline - this way I have the highlight, blush and contour all merged together and running the same way.  I used Benefit's Coralista blush in this example - if you're wondering!

8. Contouring complete! If you're still unsure, it helps to look at your face from different angles in a mirror and realise where light naturally hits, and where shadow naturally falls (looking up into a mirror highlights the lighter areas, and vice versa). I then usually take my contouring underneath my jawline and onto my forehead using the same method (again, google this as there's tonnes of images of where to place contour & highlight - it's generally made in a '3' shape around the side of the face)


The way you work with this product depends on what kind of look you want to go for. A flat kabuki brush will work wonders for an all over bronzing base, but when it comes to contouring, the softness of the line you use is key to creating a natural looking, flawless finish. The texture of the Bronze Universal is very blendable - almost like a hybrid of a mousse and a cream. It's also very buildable and is a product that can be used in a multitude of ways. This is just how I contour my cheekbones - you might find another way works better for you but this gets the best results for me personally! Kim Kardashian - eat yer heart out, petal!

Here's a rundown of products used in this post:


YSL Touche Eclat foundation in 'B40' (review here)
Chanel 'Bronze Universal' (first impressions post here)
Real Techniques brushes - Buffing, Contour, Powder, Blush (collection post/review here)
Mac Mineralise Skinfinish Natural in 'Medium'
Benefit Coralista blush (review here)
Sleek Contour Kit in 'Light'
Benefit 'They're Real' mascara (review here)
Sleek Eyebrow kit in 'Light'
HD Brows palette in 'Bombshell'
Mac Smolder eye kohl
Mac 'Plink!' lipstick.

I also used this method of contouring in my FOTD post here - which was used for a night out! You can see the definition and line of contour more clearly!

Have you tried Chanel's Bronze Universal? Are you a fan of contouring like me?

63 comments:

  1. gorgeous! this make me reallllyyy want to purchase it! xx

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    1. its a lovely luxury product - i actually think im going to repurchase! x

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  2. Looks really natural on you x

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    1. thanks Jenny :) yes its really natural looking - its very light :) x

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    2. It definitely wouldn't look as natural on my ghost complexion, aha :) x

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  3. Ahh fantastic post! I was the same when I first got the Chanel bronzer - I kept attemtping to use it but putting it back in it's drawer and just being happy about owning it haha. I've been buffing it on with a small stippling brush but going to try swiping it with my finger first now. Loved all the little tips in between too! xx

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    1. thankyou so much lovely :) glad you found it helpful. I know when i first got it i struggled to find any 'how tos' using the product but hopefully this will give people an idea of one way to use it! I find this method works better as you get a more precise application to start with :) let me know how you get on! :) xxx

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  4. Really interesting post!! This is on my birthday Wishlist!

    Www.teapartywithalice.com

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    1. oo definitely a birthday treat :) its lovely x

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  5. Fantastic post Beth :) This is so helpful! I think I might give the Sleek contouring palette a go :) You look gorgeous in the pictures too! xx

    belle-amiebeauty.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. thanks Amie! :) Yess the Sleek contour kit is fab - they do a face form kit now which i have my eye on - comes with a blush too :) x

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  6. I might some how have to justify spending this much on a bronzer :p + looks gorgeous on you x

    http://theressomethingaboutalice.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. haha im in love with it - even though its expensive i think i might have to repurchase! :P xx thanks hun

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  7. You look gorge as per usual :) and your step by step is is really easy to understand but in depth if that makes sense? i need this in my life :) This post is amazing!! you should deffo do more step by step beaut :)

    Love Emily xx

    http://love-x-beauty.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. aw thanks beaut! :) Im glad it makes sense! When i was photographing it i thought it wouldn't work so im glad you think it does :) photographing tutorials are hard! :P xx

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  8. lovely post :) It's made me want to get my Chanel bronzer back out, Ive been ignoring it and using Laguna for a couple of months. I love putting the Chanel bronzer on my temples to contour too xx

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    1. OO i must admit i do love me a bit of Laguna! But mines running out and im trying to stall for time until i have to buy it again ;)
      yess i always use it on my temples too - its such a versatile product - i love it x

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  9. Great post! I love contouring too! I have the Chanel bronzer and think its great although I don't reach for it much, think I need to now! Xx

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    1. i was like that at the start! it sat looking pretty on my dresser for agesss but ive learnt how to make it work for me now and i have to say i think im going to repurchase! x

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  10. Your routine is basically the same as mine haha :D

    Using the foundation and Chanel bronzer <3 and by the way you look gawj!

    India xox The Jewel Beauty Blog |Beauty,Lifestyle & Fashion! - CHANEL, Elemis & John Frieda Giveaway

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    1. yaay! matching routines! it works really well with the YSL doesn't it! :)

      Thanks hunnie <3 xx

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  11. Everyone pulls the fish face! Haha it's a very attractive method of contouring!

    Your skin looks flawless!

    http://hannahrebekahcampbell.blogspot.com xx

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  12. Looks lovely on your, pretty! x

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  13. Amazing. You are stunning!!! Xo

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  14. I NEED to get this product - I've heard so many good things about it! Looking lovely as always Beth! xx

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  15. I've always hesitated about getting this because I thought it would be too light and not show up on me but I'm reconsidering it. Stunning post x

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  16. Love the step by step guide. Contouring is an essential process for me! You look gorgeous xx

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  17. Interesting and helpful post. I have wanted to buy the Chanel bronzer for quite some time but now I must get it! It's amazing how much difference contouring your face can make. xx

    www.zdevania.blogspot.com

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  18. Love <3 both you and the product, it's what I'm using to contour tonight

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  19. This product looks amazing, such a helpful post thankyou!!

    Steph at Captivating Beauty xx

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  21. This looks gorgeous! I really want to try it but I'm so pale so I'm not sure if it would be too dark/orange! I may swatch it a bit first :) This was such a helpful tutorial post :) xxx

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  22. You contour so well Beth! It ends up looking really pretty and natural. When I contour, I always think it looks to dark...maybe I'll try your method! :)

    xo
    aly

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  23. Great post Beth, i love contouring my face but i always worry incase im doing it wrong or im applying to much so it was really useful reading this!

    You look beautiful, as always! :)
    Natalie xx
    youralmostalice.blogspot.com

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  24. Haha i noticed how your great bone structure wasn't in the steps?! I always struggle with contouring this was so helpful thank you!
    xxx

    andshesaidwonderland.blogspot.co.uk

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  25. I am at a complete loss when it comes to contouring. Thanks for the post, you contour like a pro and I'll try out your method xx
    poodlestalkers.blogspot.com.au

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  26. Love contouring! you look gorgeous x

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  27. I'm also a contour queen :) I love this post Beth, the photo steps are very helpful! Now I'm so tempted to add Channels Universal to my birthday list!! Do you think it would still have this gorge effect on tanner skin :/ here in AZ its practically already summer

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  28. I love this look. I've been looking at adding a new Chanel product to my makeup bag & this one seems perfect! Excellent post lovely xx

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  29. Ahhh, finally someone has shed some light on how to actually use this bronzer, I've had the type of results which have been nice, but nothing superb. Definitely giving this a go!

    www.blindlybeautiful.blogspot.jp

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  30. I want to try the Chanel bronzer! I like using the Mac MSF sometimes :) xo

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  31. Thank you so much for this! You look gorgeous

    xo
    100 GFC follower giveaway :)
    http://verrism.blogspot.co.uk

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  32. I've dug this out to use today!:D Thanks so much for this post lovely!xx

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  33. Love this post! I've just started to delve into the world of contouring after hearing this mystical word on a few blogs....this run-down will help me hugely in getting it right! Thanks Beth xxx

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  34. Oooh I need to do contouring more as I love that Kim K contour look! I will definitely be using this guide to do my own as your method looks gorgeous as per! xoxo

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  35. Wow this post is makeup magic!!! Well written, and so helpful! xxxxx

    Gem ♥ | Miss Makeup Magpie

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  36. This post was so helpful, thank you! I always struggle with contouring! xx

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  37. oh gosh you're making me want to go out and buy this Chanel de soliel now.. I just went through a bunch of your posts and read your reviews/first impressions on it and it does sound lovely. It certianly looks beautiful on you. Love this contouring tutorial, I am still trying to grasp how to contour so this really helps!

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  38. check out my blog & follow if you like :)

    xx http://rorolovesbeauty.blogspot.com/

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  39. This is such a helpful post, I'm terrible at contouring but I might have to give this method a go, It would also give me the excuse I've been looking for to buy the Bronze Universal :)
    Rosalie x
    rosaliejayne.blogspot.co.uk

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  40. I've never contoured before, its always scared me a bit because I worry it will go horribly wrong hah! xx

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  41. I've been wanting Chanel Bronze Universal for ages!! And you've just made me want it even more. Its so beautiful! I think its going to have to be my next big purchase! Brilliant post :D xxx

    gemmasbeautycorner.blogspot.co.uk

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  42. Love this post! Stunning as ever! It's also confirmed that I NEED Chanel Bronze Universal in my life! X

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  43. I have the Chanel Bronze Universal and loved it from day one. Loved this tutorial and you are way too pretty :) xx

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  44. you are too pretty! unfortunately this stuff was too dark for me but looks incredible on you! x

    http://thebeautyvisual.blogspot.co.uk

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  45. I love this post, I really want to try contouring but the idea of it is really intimidating xx

    Lucy Loves To Blog

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  46. Love this post. I dont use my chanel bronzer as often as I should!

    Leanne @ Leanne-Marie | Beauty, fashion & lifestyle. x x

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  47. Your cheekbones are perfect! Following :) xx

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  48. The Chanel bronzer looks gorgeous! Such a great post :)
    Catherine x | Brighton Girl

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  49. You know, for how much I hear about it, I very rarely actually get to see the Chanel bronzer at work so I'm so glad you demo'd it here. Looks honestly fantastic, I only wish I weren't saving for school at the moment! I'll definitely pick it up someday though :) xx

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I always read all of my lovely comments. Make sure you check back as i often reply but if you do have a specific question and want a quicker response then please do email me over at birds.words@yahoo.co.uk or tweet me (@Beth_BirdsWords). Thank you for all your support! x