A football to the face isn’t the only way a crooked nose can happen — some of us are just born with a not-so-straight schnoz. If yours is slightly off and you would like it to appear straighter, then cosmetic contouring is the way to go. Just look to Marilyn Monroe’s makeup artist, Allan Snyder, for inspiration — he regularly used carefully placed blush to make Monroe’s nose appear shorter and straighter. Today, an ocean of cream and pencil concealer shades can help straighten your nose without appearing heavy or obvious.
Before applying any extra contouring, apply a daily moisturizer and follow up with a medium coverage foundation and blend into your skin with a blending sponge. Make sure that your base foundation matches your skin perfectly and that you have worked it into the skin for even coverage.
Invest in two concealers: One that is two shades darker than your skin tone and another two shades lighter than your skin tone. You can opt for a cream concealer that you apply with a small blending brush or you can purchase concealer pencils, which make exact application easy for beginners.
For a smooth, natural finish, opt for cream concealers if your skin is on the drier side of the spectrum.
If you want to create the illusion of a straight nose because you have a slight bend or you desire a narrower appearance, then you want to contour the sides. Apply the darker shade of concealer in two straight, vertical, 1/4-inch-wide lines on either side of the nose.
Start each line next to the inner corner of the eye and draw it all the way down to the nostril. If your nose bends, don’t follow your natural curve as you draw the line but keep it straight. This darker shade helps any prominent areas recede and keeps the eye focused on the straight line you constructed.
Highlight your cheekbones and just underneath your eyebrows with a creamy highlighter to create a strong, structured frame for your entire face.
Follow up the darker contour with the highlighting shade down the center of the nose all the way to the tip. This step further emphasizes that straight line and helps the sides of your nose recede more effectively.
Blend the highlighted area with a clean blending sponge or brush, and then blend the darker contour shade on each side of the nose so the shades sit naturally on your skin. Try to keep from blending outward very far since you want a subtly structured appearance, not a slow fade from dark to light.
Set your contouring concealers with a sheer setting powder after you have blended them for all-day wear.
If you have a prominent bridge or an area on the top of your nose you want to de-emphasize, you can use contouring to create a flatter silhouette. Apply the darker contouring shade directly on top of the bump or ridge you want to recede. Apply a lighter shade of concealer along each side of the bump and down to the nostrils.
Gently blend in the contouring with a blending brush or sponge until the shades sit naturally on your skin. Build up the contouring with a second layer if you want a little stronger coverage — but avoid applying too heavily, which can draw attention toward the area you want to hide.