Best Contour Kit to Slay All Day (2021 Reviews and Guide)

So, you want fiercely defined cheekbones like Kim Kardashian, but you don’t know which products are worth the price? Hopefully, our guide and reviews of the best contour kit sets will help you make the wisest possible shopping decision.

In this article, you’ll learn which contour kits are the best and why.

The Best Contour Kit for 2021: A Brief Overview

COMPANY
STATS
FEATURES
PRICE
Smashbox - Logo
  • Overall best powder contouring kit
  • Matte and shimmer finish
  • Sulfate-free
  • Cruelty-free
From $40.00
Sephora - Logo
  • Best contour kit by Sephora
  • Phthalate and paraben-free
  • Doubles as eyeshadow
  • Not tested on animals
From $58.00
Anastasia Beverly Hills - Logo
  • Best contour kit for oily skin
  • Removable and refillable pots
  • Brightens the under-eye area
  • Soft glam finish
From $40.00
NYX - Logo
  • Best drugstore contour kit
  • Suitable for vegans
  • Opaque formula
  • Long-lasting
From $26.30
Rimmel - Logo
  • Best contour kit in the UK
  • Beginner-friendly
  • Highly compact and portable
  • Good for everyday use
From $9.70
Sleek - Logo
  • Best contour kit for mature skin
  • Hydrating formula
  • Fade-proof finish
  • Doesn’t look ashy
From $13.27
E.L.F. - Logo
  • Best affordable contour kit
  • Cruelty-free and vegan
  • Award-winning quality
  • Perfect for textured skin
From $8.00
Lorac - Logo
  • Best contour kit for fair skin
  • Blends easily
  • Conceals blemishes
  • Booklet full of great tips
From $45.00
MAC - Logo
  • Best contour kit for brown skin
  • Safe for acne-prone skin
  • Evens out texture
  • Beaming highlighters
From $40.00
Aesthetica - Logo
  • Best contour kit for Asian skin
  • Travel-friendly
  • Non-oxidizing formula
  • Fade-proof
From $47.57

Ultimate Contour Kit Reviews

We sought out, tested, and reviewed ten of the best products of this kind that are currently on the market. In the following section, you’ll learn what makes each of these contour kits outstanding and who we would recommend them to.

Smashbox Cali Contour Face Palette Review

Best Powder and Overall Top Contour Kit

  • Rating: 10
  • Suitable for: Oily/combination skin
  • Type: Powder
  • Shade: Light/medium
  • Shipping: Free on orders over $50
  • Price: $40.00

The Smashbox Cali Contour Face Palette is a pressed powder that will give you a matte or a shimmer finish. Based on countless user reviews and Youtube appreciation videos, this might currently be the best-rated contour kit around, especially if we only focus on powders.

You get four matte shades (bronzer, contour, highlighter, and blush) and two iridescent shades (bronze and shimmer highlighters).

Although it’s most suitable for oily/combination skin because of the powder finish, we loved that it is not too drying. In fact, the formula applies very smoothly to the skin, and it’s creamy.

This product comes in two shades, light to medium and medium to dark. According to a number of Smashbox Contour Kit reviews, the contour shade is cool-toned, and the bronzer is neutral, so you don’t have to worry about ending up with an orange face.

As a nice bonus, this cruelty-free contour kit comes with a helpful mirror for looking fabulous on the go.

Some users mentioned they noticed a bit of fallout after application and that the powder starts rubbing off after a while. Fortunately, these issues were mainly experienced by people with dry skin, and even they can prevent this by using a good setting spray.

Pros:
  • Blends naturally
  • Creamy formula
  • Bronzer is neutral

Cons:
  • People with dry skin may notice minor fallout

SEPHORA COLLECTION Sephora PRO Face Palette Review

Best Face Contour Kit by Sephora

  • Rating: 9.9
  • Suitable for: Oily to combination skin
  • Type: Powder
  • Shade: Light
  • Shipping: Free on orders over $50
  • Price: $58.00

The Sephora PRO Face Palette is a creamy powder formula suitable for most skin types, especially for people with oily skin. The professional artist team at Sephora created this palette as a set of three exclusive, limited-edition palettes tailored by complexion type.

As the best contouring makeup kit offered directly by Sephora, it contains eight stunning shades, and it is available for three different skin tones: light, medium, and deep.

Although the kit is more expensive than some of the other contouring palettes, you get a lot of product that will last you for a long time.

The ingredients also look good. We examined the ingredient list and saw that the formula is paraben and phthalate-free. In other words, it won’t make you break out. However, if you have slightly textured skin, you will want to use a good primer before putting on this powder.

According to some contouring kit reviews, the blush in the lightest palette is not too pink, which is often an issue with similar products. Also, you get two bronzer shades, a warm and a cool-toned one for contouring, making it suitable for different undertones.

Pros:
  • Doesn’t cause pimples
  • Not tested on animals
  • For warm and cool undertones

Cons:
Requires a primer

Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit Review

Best Contour and Highlight Kit for Oily Skin

  • Rating: 9.8
  • Suitable for: Oily to combination skin
  • Type: Powder
  • Shade: Light to medium
  • Shipping: Free on orders over $50
  • Price: $40.00

The Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit is a sleek powder palette with six stunning shades, three for contouring and three for highlighting.

Most Anastasia contour kit reviews point out that the shades are easily removable and refillable, i.e., you can replace them if you “hit pan.” This is especially helpful, as you don’t have to get a new palette just for one shade.

Although the formula is creamy and blendable, some people might find the powder too drying. However, this doesn’t prevent it from being possibly the best high-end contour kit for people with oily to combination skin.

One of the biggest pros of the Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit is that it comes with various shades, including the trendy banana yellow for brightening the dark circles under the eyes.

Also, the contour shades are cool-toned and will not look orange on the skin. According to one Anastasia Contour Kit review after another, people with dark skin will find this product excellent, mainly because the shades are not ashy.

Sadly, the kit does not come with a mirror, so you will have to bring your own when traveling. However, for at-home use, this contour kit is close to perfection.

Pros:
  • Removable and refillable shades
  • Suitable for dark skin
  • Perfect under-eye brightening

Cons:
No mirror

NYX Professional Makeup Highlight & Contour Pro Palette Review

Best Drugstore Contouring Kit

  • Rating: 9.7
  • Suitable for: Oily to combination skin 
  • Type: Powder
  • Shade: Universal
  • Shipping: Free US shipping on orders over $35
  • Price: $26.30

It’s estimated that 96% of pet owners in the United States think of their pets as family members.

With that in mind, it’s not surprising that so many of us are looking for makeup made by cruelty-free brands that don’t test their products on animals. Enter one of the most popular makeup brands found in drugstores, NYX, along with one of their best-selling contour kits.

The NYX Pro Palette comes with two matte and two glowy highlighters and four medium to dark shades for contouring and bronzing. Based on the price to value ratio, we believe this is one of the best powder contour kits that you could find in a drugstore.

The shimmery highlights (Nectar and Ice Queen) are not blinding, so they can be used to achieve the casual, everyday look. Even though some people complain about how light the Nectar shade is, others might prefer it that way.

As for the contour and bronze shades, this wouldn’t be one of the top contour kits around if they couldn’t be easily mixed and matched to create your perfect undertone.

Since the palette comes in a plastic case with a transparent cover and eight gorgeous shades, you’ll have plenty of room to experiment while searching for the hue that complements your skin the best.

As for the downsides, while the lack of a mirror is not really a serious issue, since we mentioned it in our Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit review, we should also point it out here. Of course, you can easily pack a small compact mirror if you are traveling.

We think this is one of the highest-quality drugstore contour kits you can get for the price. Although there are some cheaper brands to be found at drugstores, they don’t come close to NYX in versatility.

Pros:
  • Vegan-friendly
  • Mix and match shades
  • Glowy and matte shades

Cons:
Nectar shade is too light for some

Rimmel Sculpting Highlighter Palette Review

Best Makeup Contour Kit in the UK

  • Rating: 9.6
  • Suitable for: Oily and textured skin
  • Type: Powder
  • Shade: Light
  • Shipping: Free on orders over $35
  • Price: $9.70

The Rimmel Sculpting Highlighter Palette is a compact powder for slaying on the go.

Despite its low price, this product easily compares to many higher-end brands on the market. Overall, as a collaboration with the supermodel Kate Moss, it’s considered the most popular contour kit in the United Kingdom.

Often described as the best budget contour kit, it includes a highlight, a blush, and a contour shimmer powder. The kit is available in three pretty shades, Coral Glow, Golden Bronze, and Highlight.

We loved this tiny kit because it’s creamy as butter and makes the skin feel silky. Best of all, it doesn’t accentuate textured skin.

In a nutshell, aside from being one of the all-around best contouring kits in this price range, this is the ideal kit if you want to define your cheekbones and add a slight glow to your face.

However, due to its minimalistic size, this kit doesn’t offer much versatility. On the positive side, it fits into any purse and is a great budget-friendly addition to your makeup arsenal.

Pros:
  • Suitable for textured skin
  • Long-lasting shades
  • Silky texture

Cons:
Lack of versatility

Sleek MakeUP Cream Contour Kit Review

Top Pick Among the Best Contour Kits for Mature Skin

  • Rating: 9.5
  • Suitable for: All skin types
  • Type: Cream
  • Shade: Medium, dark
  • Shipping: Free on orders over $50
  • Price: $13.27

The Sleek MakeUP Cream Contour Kit is an ultra-blendable product with four contouring and two highlighting shades.

It comes in three shade varieties, making it suitable for people with different skin tones. The dark palette is ideal for brown skin because it’s not ashy and not too warm. Moreover, since this is a hydrating formula, it will look amazing on people with mature or dry skin.

However, you’ll also often find this product described as the best contour kit for medium skin or the go-to choice for those with deeper tones.

This kit at least partially owes its versatility to the fact that it’s easy to build up, helping you achieve full coverage if desired. On the other hand, when applied with a light hand, you’ll end up with a more natural finish for everyday wear.

The Sleek MakeUP Cream Contour Kit is available in three shades, light, medium, and dark. According to some user reviews, the light shade is not light enough for very pale skin tones. So, if you are very fair, this might not be the best drugstore contouring kit for you.

Nevertheless, people with medium to dark complexions will find it perfect.

Overall, this is a good product for more advanced makeup lovers. The color pots are big, so the palette will last you a long time.

Pros:
  • Dark to neutral contouring shades
  • Buttery texture
  • Buildable formula

Cons:
Light shade not light enough

E.L.F. Cosmetics Cream Contour Palette Review

Best Inexpensive Contour Kit

  • Rating: 9.4
  • Suitable for: Dry skin
  • Type: Cream
  • Shade: Universal
  • Shipping: Free on orders over $25
  • Price: $8.00

Approximately 31% of Generation Z buyers would pay more for products that are more environmentally friendly.

Thankfully, E.L.F. Cosmetics comes very close since it’s vegan and cruelty-free. Moreover, the Cream Contour Palette is 100% free of parabens, phthalates, ethoxylates, and other potentially harmful ingredients.

There is an overabundance of reasons why we believe this 2016 Allure Magazine Best of Beauty Award Winner is among the best drugstore contour kits you can find. For instance, the formula is creamy, so it won’t accentuate flaky patches on your face if you have dry skin.

Moreover, it is suitable for people with uneven skin texture and people with enlarged pores. Overall, as one E.L.F. Contouring Kit review mentions, this palette will give you an airbrushed look without using Instagram filters.

On the downside, due to the apparent lack of shade options, this product won’t work for very fair people. However, if you prefer a bold look, you could still use this kit.

As a bonus point, some customers with deeper skin tones claim it doubles as a concealer.

Pros:
  • Paraben and phthalate-free
  • Doesn’t cling to dry skin
  • Can be used as a concealer

Cons:
Might be too bold for pale skin

Lorac PRO Conceal & Contour Palette Review

Best Contour Kit for Pale Skin

  • Rating: 9.3
  • Suitable for: Dry skin
  • Type: Cream
  • Shade: Universal
  • Shipping: Free on all orders
  • Price: $45.00

Lorac’s PRO Conceal & Contour Palette is a customer-favorite cream contour kit with twelve shades for all skin tones and undertones. You get eight cream contour shades in each kit that can double as concealers and four cream shimmer highlighters.

According to a number of Lorac Contour Kit reviews, this product is suitable for even the fairest skin tones. Namely, the lightest shade (C1) works well even if you are snow white. On the flip side, thanks to the shade C8, you can use this palette on deeper skin tones as well.

This cream contour and concealer palette will not accentuate your pores, and just about every Lorac Contour Kit review will tell you that the formula is smooth, silky, and lightweight. Best of all, it won’t leave your face feeling greasy.

However, the downside of this kit is that the pans are somewhat small, making the application process a bit challenging. Namely, you need to use a smaller brush to get the best color payoff.

On the positive side, this is probably the best cream contouring kit in terms of shade variety, and it comes with a handy Lorac Pro brush.

Pros:
  • Includes shimmer highlighters
  • Lightweight formula
  • Non-greasy feel

Cons:
Small pan size

MAC Studio Fix Sculpt and Shape Contour Palette Review

Best Contouring Kit for Brown Skin

  • Rating: 9.2
  • Suitable for: All skin types
  • Type: Powder
  • Shade: Medium-dark/dark
  • Shipping: Free on any order
  • Price: $40.00

The MAC Studio Fix Sculpt and Shape Contour Palette is a buttery powder contour kit available for light to medium and medium to dark skin tones.

Aside from beautifully complementing brown hues, it might also be the best contour kit for olive skin because the shade range is opaque enough to add structure to dark complexions.

In each expertly created palette by MAC, you’ll get three matte powders for contouring and three shimmery powders for highlighting. Although the shimmer shades in the lighter palette could be brighter, the highlighters in the darker one are beaming.

Nevertheless, if you like a natural look, you won’t mind.

We also loved that it is non-acnegenic and dermatologist-tested, as did numerous reviewers saying this is the best contour kit for sensitive skin they ever tried. In other words, based on outside reviews and our own experience, this product is very unlikely to make you break out.

Overall, this is a premium product that will give you a natural or glamorous finish. Although some people complain about slight creasing, you can quickly fix it with a clean paper tissue and a touch-up.

Pros:
  • No flashback
  • Doesn’t cause acne
  • Minimal unwanted texture

Cons:
Can slightly crease

Aesthetica Cream Contour Kit Review

Best Contour Kit for Asian Skin

  • Rating: 9.1
  • Suitable for: Dry skin
  • Type: Cream
  • Shade: Universal
  • Shipping: Check Amazon policy
  • Price: $29.97

With the Aesthetica Cream Contour Kit, you get six silky, blendable creams designed for people with anything from pale to darker skin tones. In fact, according to Aesthetica Contour Kit reviews, the two lightest shades work great for Asian skin and fair skin tones.

This professional-grade contour kit features removable and refillable pans, similarly to the Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit and the NYX Contour Pro Palette. Thanks to this feature, you can buy the shades separately if you run out.

The Aesthetica Cream Contour is also the best contour kit on Amazon, with countless positive ratings. In addition, the universal shades work with a variety of different undertones, making this product an excellent addition to any professional makeup artist’s stash.

The Aesthetica Contouring Kit reviews are predominantly positive, with makeup lovers praising its creaminess and staying power. Upon testing it for you, we concluded that this product lives up to the hype of lasting almost the entire day.

On the downside, at least one Aesthetica Contouring Kit review noted that some of the deeper shades could come across as orange on fairer skin tones. However, when mixed and matched with other shades in the palette, you can easily neutralize the orange tone.

Pros:
  • For a wide range of undertones
  • Universal shades
  • Cruelty-free and vegan

Cons:
Deeper shades may look orange

How to Pick the Best Contour Kit
— Buyer's Guide —

Contouring is a fantastic way to bring out your natural features and sculpt the face structure. It’s a popular makeup technique for highlighting the highest parts of your face (like the bridge of the nose or the cheekbones) while adding shadow to the forehead and jawline.

Overall, it should give you a chiseled, slimming effect. Here are some things to keep in mind when shopping.

Cream or Powder

When looking at the top-rated contour kits, you’ll notice that they come in cream and powder form. Although both work equally well, there are a few slight differences between creams and powders.

Namely, creams are typically easier to blend, and they are more suitable for people with dry skin. This is because creams usually do not accentuate dry patches of skin, and they are more hydrating than powders.

However, powders are more beginner-friendly, as they’re easy to apply and challenging to mess up. Also, many powder formulas are silky and easy to build up to full coverage.

We tried to cover both kinds in our contour kit reviews to help you find some of the highest-quality products in powder and in cream form. So pick and choose your favorite.

Shade Range

The beauty of contour kits is that they can come in various shades, and you can get a number of different colors in one palette. Although this color versatility is helpful for professional makeup artists, we recommend choosing a product with up to four shades.

For beginners, a top contour kit with two colors might be even better.

The Importance of Highlighter

Naturally, in each contour kit, you get a highlighter. In this review, many of the professional-grade contour kits contain more than one highlighter for brightening and accentuating certain facial features.

Also, some contour kits have both color-correctors and highlighters (which can be shimmery or matte).

Choose the Perfect Shade

There are plenty of good contour kits for different skin tones out there, from very pale to the darkest hues. Make sure to choose a contour color that is two shades darker than your natural skin. Furthermore, double-check that the shade’s undertone is a suitable match for you.

Remember, there are cool, warm, and neutral undertones.

How to Choose the Best Contour Kit?

Were you aware that 40% of buyers purchase an item after seeing it on a social media platform?

Before spending money on an influencer-recommended product and making a rash decision, consider these factors next time you’re reading a contour kit review. By carefully following these tips, you’ll quickly learn to tell the difference between high- and low-quality kits.

Shade

You will want to get a contour kit that is not too light or dark for your skin tone. Because if it is too light, it will likely not even show on your face. Whereas, if the contour is too dark, your makeup can quickly turn into a mess.

Luckily, we are positive that you will find the best makeup contour kit for your skin tone among the ones we reviewed here.

Ingredients

Always look for contour kits with a minimal number of different ingredients. Also, brands that claim to be vegan, vegetarian, cruelty-free, and free of potentially harmful additives should always be prioritized.

Price

It’s not uncommon to come across a contour kit review claiming that these makeup essentials are relatively expensive. That’s why we have made sure to include some budget-friendly options for people who do not want to splurge on the more lavish items.

Besides looking for deals, keep your eyes peeled out for free shipping, free returns, and discounts.

Also, don’t shy away from the pricier contour kits. Most of them will last long enough for their price not to be a huge issue while looking better and being gentler on your skin.

FAQ

What is the best contour kit for beginners?

The best beginner-friendly contour kit is the Rimmel Sculpting Highlighter Palette because it is simple to use and compact. Another example of an excellent contour kit for beginners is the E.L.F. Cosmetics Cream Contour Palette.

What is the best contour kit?

Judging by the countless user reviews and our personal experience, the contour kit that deserves to be called “the best” is the Smashbox Cali Contour Face Palette.

Namely, this pressed powder palette is all you need to achieve either a glamorous or a more daytime look. The formula is creamy and silky, and it won’t leave your skin feeling oily.

Is powder or cream contour better?

It depends on what you are looking for and what type of skin you have. For instance, people with dry skin should typically opt for cream contour, as these products add hydration to the face. On the other hand, people with oily or problematic skin should try powder contour kits.

What is the best contour kit for dark skin?

There are many great contour kits for deep skin tones. For instance, MAC Studio Fix Sculpt and Shape Contour Palette is excellent for medium to dark complexions, but so is the crowd-favorite, Smashbox Cali Contour Face Palette.

Check out our detailed reviews for more information on contour kits for deeper complexions.

How do I choose a contour kit?

Choosing a contour kit can be somewhat confusing if you are a complete beginner. Of course, if you are at a physical store, you’ll find an expert makeup artist that you can ask for tips.

However, if you’re shopping online, our comprehensive buyer’s guide will give you all the information you need to choose the right product for you.

The Bottom Line

Overall, aside from looking for the best contour kit for your skin type and color, you also need it to be versatile, free of harmful additives, non-greasy, non-oxidizing, and within your budget.

We have tried to provide you with a bunch of options to lift your cheekbones to the gods and make you look fabulous, and hopefully, one of them will be just the kit you’ve been looking for.

Remember, you deserve to feel beautiful.

Hermina believes that every day is a chance to learn something new about the obscure world around us. The driving force behind her writing is her passion for sharing knowledge with others all around the world. After attaining her master’s degree in English language and literature, she has decided to join the team of creative writers dedicated to delivering the hottest content on the web. So what are Hermina’s favorite topics to cover? Animals, good books, health, fitness, self-care—you name it.

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