Cream vs Powder Contour: The pros and cons to help you decide

You are not a makeup junkie from 2016 if you don't have at least one contour kit. Every brand and their aunts have a version and in multiple formulas at that, so it's not surprising that there's a lot of confusion about which ones to get! Allow us to demystify at least two major formulations: the cream and powder contour.

Both do the same thing, which is to chisel your face to perfection, but go about it in different ways. The base, tools, and application technique required for each formula differ completely.

The ideal surface

For cream contour, you want to apply it on a cream or liquid base. In other words you should set your base with powder after applying the cream, and not before. For powder contour, blend it on top of a powdered face to get a smooth finish free of streaks and patches.

Remember: wet is to wet and dry is to dry!

The tools to tote

Cream contour can be applied and blended just with fingers, which makes it a convenient product to have on the go. You may use a Beauty Blender (or equivalent) if you want smoother and faster results! Powder contour on the other hand must be applied with a fluffy brush, preferably an angled one with natural hair.

Products used: Make Up For Ever Pro Sculpting Kit / Make Up For Ever #230 Brush / Nippon Sponge (Beauty Blender dupe) / Pop Beauty Contour 101 Kit / Bobbi Brown Angled Face Brush

Tips and techniques to note

With a cream contour, it's almost impossible to layer from sheer to heavy; the strategy is to apply more than you'd need, then diffuse it with your preferred blending tool. With a powder, you need to start with a sheer layer first and add more if necessary. You can blend it even more with a clean brush, i.e., not loaded with product.

Watch the video above to see how to apply both products!

Pros and cons

Creams have a more natural, skin-like finish that steps away from that dated makeup-y look. It's great for everyday wear and is much quicker to work with compared to powders. However, if you're oily or blemished, they will complicate your routine. I recommend using it if you have good, normal to combi skin.

Powder contours can give you a more chiseled, defined look and a completely matte finish. It's great for shoots and events since they have the staying power + photogenic effect you're looking for. You just have to be careful about not putting too much as it can look overdone and unrealistic.

Hope this post and the video helped! <3 Please don't forget to subscribe to Project Vanity's YouTube Channel to get updated as we post! (We have new vids every Wednesday and Saturday).

Would love to hear about what you prefer: cream or powder contour?