Home Makeup Tips Philtrum Beauty: Easy Philtrum Contouring Makeup Techniques (5 Ways)
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Philtrum Beauty: Easy Philtrum Contouring Makeup Techniques (5 Ways)

by Sandy Taylor

If you are unsatisfied with the way your philtrum looks, there are ways to adjust its appearance with makeup. These makeup techniques are simple and easy to learn even for beginners. No matter if you’re trying to make your philtrum shorter, longer, thinner, deeper or thicker, this post has you covered!

Here are some easy philtrum contouring makeup techniques:


How to Make Your Philtrum Look Shorter With Makeup

First, you should use some highlighter right above your cupid’s bow. 

  1. Apply the highlighter on the outsides of your philtrum, not the inside, because this space needs to be darker. You should only highlight the bottom half of the philtrum. Blend the highlighter.
  2. Next, make your upper lip appear larger than usual. You can do this with either lip liner or lipstick by overlining or overdrawing your top lip, focusing primarily on your cupid’s bow. Avoid using dramatic colors as this draws extra attention to your philtrum and lips!
  3. Lastly, use a contouring palette to shade underneath your nose. You should use a color similar to your skin tone, but slightly darker. Taking a brush, lightly apply the contour to the base of your nose around the bottom of your nostrils and septum.

You can also apply extra contour to the bottom tip of your nose, and some highlighter on the tip of your nose that is facing outward. This contouring will make your nose appear longer and cast additional “shadows” on your philtrum. 

How to Make Your Philtrum Look Longer With Makeup

Use the following steps to make your philtrum look longer using makeup. 

  1. If you would like your philtrum to appear longer, you should begin by applying a concealer slightly lighter than your skin tone, starting right underneath your nostrils and extending down to the upper lip. 
  2. You should also apply some concealer around the edges of your nostrils where there are shadows in order to help the entire area look brighter and more dynamic. 
  3. Next, apply some blush to the tip of your nose. Avoid using contour as this will make your nose appear dirty.
  4. Make your lips appear smaller underneath your philtrum by using a concealer or a white makeup pencil. You can use a concealer that matches your skin tone to make your cupid’s bow appear shorter, therefore causing your philtrum to look longer. 

Using a white pencil to lightly accentuate your upper lip will also help, but you must make sure you either don’t apply too much or blend it into your skin nicely.

How to Make Your Philtrum Look Thinner

Since your philtrum is defined by the two “ridges” that extend upward from your cupid’s bow, you will need to work on making these ridges appear closer together by using a highlighter, concealer, and contour.

  1. First, you should apply concealer to the area, starting right underneath your nostrils and down to the top of your upper lip. Make sure you cover the entire philtrum area, as well as any darker areas around your nostrils.
  2. Next, use a highlighter and highlight directly inside the two ridges that define your philtrum. This will make the edges appear closer together. Very lightly applying some blush to the outsides of your nostrils will help as well.
  3. Then, use a contour very similar to your skin tone, but slightly darker, in the middle of your philtrum. This will accentuate the middle of the philtrum and not the edges.
  4. You can also make your lips appear longer with lip liner and lipstick. Line your lips as you usually would but draw past the corners of your lips only slightly. Overdrawing with too much liner will make your lips appear thinner instead of your philtrum.

You should avoid wearing any bright or distracting lipstick as it draws attention to the area. If you’re still not satisfied with the results, you can contour your nose to appear slightly wider in comparison to your philtrum. 

Start underneath the starting point of your eyebrows and apply a strong, non-glittery highlighter to both sides of the nose, stopping above your nostrils. Blend well.

How to Make Your Philtrum Look Deeper

To make your philtrum look deeper, you will have to create a higher contrast between the outer ridges and the indent of your philtrum.

  1. Like the other methods of changing your philtrum appearance, you should apply a concealer lighter than your skin tone to the area beginning with below your nostrils and down to above your upper lip.
  2. Using a thin brush, apply highlighter vertically alongside the edges of your philtrum to accentuate the ridges. 
  3. Next, contrast the highlighter by contouring the indent of your philtrum with a shade darker than your skin. Focus the contour on the largest and widest part of your philtrum, closer to the top of your lip. 

Make sure you blend the highlighter and contour well so that it does not look like a blunt circle.

How to Make Your Philtrum Look Thicker

Use a concealer lighter than your skin tone to cover the area. 

  1. Start at the bottom of your nostrils down to right above your upper lip. Cover any darker areas around your nostrils and mouth.
  2. Apply highlighter vertically to the outsides of the ridges bordering your philtrum. This will expand the edges outward. 
  3. Apply a light amount of contour darker than your skin tone inside the philtrum, blending well. Make sure this contour reaches between both of the original ridges.
  4. You can also make your lips and nose seem thinner to accentuate your philtrum by using a small amount of concealer on the edges of your mouth. Then, use lip liner and lipstick to fill in your lips. 
  5. Do not extend the liner or lipstick to the very edges of your mouth and leave an even amount of space on each side. You will still be able to see the lines extending from the outer corner of your mouth, but your lips will appear smaller. Check out my guide on how to hide frown lines around the mouth if you want to hide these lines as well. 

For your nose, make sure you have already applied foundation before moving to contour.

  1. Apply highlighter down the bridge of your nose, starting at eye-level and stopping approximately half-inch from the bottom of your nose.
  2. Apply a thin line of darker contour to the edges of your nose and blend thoroughly.

Like other philtrum contours, avoid bright or distracting lipstick and instead try to bring attention upwards with detailed eye makeup or a creative hairstyle. This will draw attention away from the bottom of your face without avoiding it entirely.

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