We spoke to a MAC makeup artist about how to achieve this beautiful new makeup trend.
We’ve been hearing the word ‘strobing’ recently and wondering, what the hell is this new makeup trend? If you’re overwhelmed by the whole thing, chill. We’re here to help.
What we’re talking about is the latest make-up trend that people are suddenly into because just plain contouring and highlighting is, like, so 2014 or something. Strobing is where it’s at right now (apparently) so here’s your need to know on it and on how to do it.
What’s the difference between strobing and highlighting?
Turns out that they’re actually pretty similar because both involve highlighting areas of the face. That said, they’re slightly different in terms of the overall effect you’re creating: “With strobing it’s about creating the appearance of light and luminosity, as if it’s coming from within”, explains M∙A∙C Senior Artist, Dominic Skinner. So to sum it up, strobing is about creating that all-over I’ve-just-been-on-a-300-day-spa-break kind of glow.
And what’s the difference between contouring and strobing?
There’s lots of difference between these two. Where contouring is all about creating shadow to add depth and structure to the face, strobing highlights certain areas. “It’s about adding light to lift, highlight and brighten the areas that you want to pop out,” Dominic explains. Whilst definitely very different to contouring, the point of strobing is still to add dimension to the face, but using a different technique.
How do you strobe your face?
What you’re aiming for is an overall brightness and glow to your skin. Start by using an illuminating moisturiser before you apply your base like M∙A∙C’s Strobe Cream, $55. Then apply your usual base, but go light to keep it fresh and dewy.
Once you’ve done that, go in with your highlighter (we’ll talk about good’uns later), applying it to the high points of your face like the cheek bones, the bridge and down the centre of your nose, between the brows and the brow bones, the cupid’s bow and the centre of the eyelids. Remember, don’t go too OTT because there’s a real danger of entering sweaty-mess territory.
“The key to not looking sweaty is to be precise with your placement and matte the other areas down,” says Dominic. Do this by using a powder to mattify areas that you’d normally contour like under the cheekbone, the top of the forehead and down the sides of the nose. This creates a contrast against the highlight.