Dear Nikki I really need to know how to make my checkbones appear more sculpted. I have tried everything but it just doesn't work. Please help me – I am in crisis here!

While we may not all be blessed with the bone structure of a supermodel, clever use of blusher can easily create the illusion of cheekbones. When used correctly, makeup has the ability to change the entire shape of your face, but as usual the secret is in the application.

If your cheekbones are non existent, they can easily be created by contouring the face with the correct tone of blusher.

When choosing a blush to provide shading, select a tone that is similar to that of your natural skin. As a rule, the lighter the skin tone, the lighter the blush, whereas darker skins can take more depth of colour.

Use a blush within the taupe or brown tonings- two of my favorite contouring shades are MACs 'Harmony' (a gorgeous matte pinky- brown) and Bobbi Browns matte Bronzer in light or medium.

The next step is to work out where your cheekbones are and you can do this by looking at your face strait on in the mirror and literally sucking your cheeks in! The hollow part is where you need to apply the contour and you can do this by using a soft, fluffy brush and sweeping your blusher from your hairline directly under your cheekbone, taking care to keep your application light and natural – you can always add more, but its harder to take it off.

Now that you have defined your cheekbone, you need to add some colour, so take a blush in a soft rose or warm peach and apply it directly to the apple of your cheek, using circular movements. If you are not sure where this is, simply smile into the mirror and the roundest part of your cheek is the 'apple'. A good blusher for this job is 'Ecstasy' by Smashbox, as it gives the cheeks a delicate flush of colour and the superfine texture makes it easy to apply.

Now for the finishing touch. Choose a highlighter or shimmer powder in a light colour that bends into your skin, soft shimmery beiges and silvers work well and if you have darker skin, a light bronze or soft gold is flattering. Using your blusher brush, dust your highlighter directly across the top of your cheekbones to create instant lift. Bobbi Browns shimmer Brick comes in a variety of colours and adds a soft sheen without overdoing it. For the evening you can be a bit more adventurous with the highlighter – try one of MACs stunning Mineralize powders to give the illusion of extra high cheekbones!

Nikki Lovrich – FashioNZ pro makeup artist

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