It was only a few years ago that the growing infatuation with beauty vloggers and reality TV stars like Kim Kardashian West gave us the razor-sharp contouring phenomenon, but it feels like another time altogether. Chiseling your cheeks is still popular among professional makeup artists who’ve mastered it for red-carpet clients, but it’s safe to say that the rest of us have generally toned it down about five notches. Now, the goal is to subtly define your cheekbones for a natural-looking sculpt — which can sometimes be turned up a little.
Whether you’re already a pro at the chiseled look or made it your goal to become better at it in 2019, it can be hard to find the product that’s just right for you. That’s where palettes come in: They give you way more creative freedom than a single contouring stick or solo powder, and there are options for everyone, from novice to master. Ahead, we rounded up the best-selling contour kits on the market right now.
There’s a reason this brand is a favorite among influencers: Its products are formulated to create filter-like finishes that were practically made for Instagram, like this contour kit that comes with four matte contouring shades and four highlighter shades that are super blendable for a soft-focus effect.
Morphe 8L LO-FI SCULPT & SHIMMER, $25, available at Morphe Brushes
Conceal and contour in a snap with this cream-formula kit that dabs on easily with just your fingertips, so you can hide dark circles and sculpt your cheeks in the backseat of your Uber.
NYX Professional Makeup 3C Conceal Correct Contour Palette, $11.99, available at Ulta Beauty
One look at the reviews for this six-shade set, and you’ll see both beginners in love with how easy it is to use and pros raving about the formula — plus the fact that the pans are removable and refillable.
Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit, $40, available at Sephora
Finding the right shade can be a challenge, but this kit does away with the guessing game with four universal options. Plus, the cocoa powder in the formula does more than make it smell like chocolate — it works to smooth the skin, too.
Too Faced Cocoa Contour Chiseled to Perfection, $42, available at Ulta Beauty
There is such a thing as too many options, but not with this customized palette, which gives you the power to mix and match four shades to create your preferred look.
e.l.f. Contour Palette Light/Medium, $6, available at Target
If you’ve already mastered the bake-and-chisel, this powder palette is perfect for you. With two matte highlighters, one shimmer highlighter, and three matte contour shades, you can go extra subtle or pack on the pigment. The included brush is high-quality, so it’s really all you need for ultimate precision.
Lorac PRO Contour Palette with Contour Brush, $45, available at Ulta Beauty
Leave it to contour queen Kim Kardashian to release her own kit. Her palette sold out in all four of its shades in less than three hours — and generated a reported $14 million in its first day. Vloggers and pros have raved that the pressed powder formula blends seamlessly for a soft, yet buildable look.
KKW POWDER CONTOUR & HIGHLIGHT PALETTES, $44, available at KKW Beauty
Still haven’t figured out whether you like cream or powder? This complexion kit has everything you need to suss out your preference, with powders on one side and creams on the other. Who knows — maybe you’ll even decide to combine the two.
Urban Decay Naked Skin Shapeshifter, $45, available at Sephora
Take your contour on the go with this travel-sized palette, which is actually ideal for beginners thanks to a cheat sheet that tells you where to apply the different powders on your face. You’ll be able to contour like a pro, even if you’re on vacation with zero Wifi for YouTube tutorials.
Smashbox Step-By-Step Contour Kit, $35, available at Macy’s
Speaking of cheat sheets, this palette is as straightforward as it gets. Each of the three shades is marked with its function, and step-by-step instructions are included, leaving no room for error.
Maybelline Face Studio Master Contour™, $9.39, available at Target
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