Would like some input on makeup/contouring

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Jan 19, 2007
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It's been quite a while since I last posted here, and everyone was *so* wonderful, supportive and gave great advice.

Well, I finally got over my fears (kind-of!) and ventured out.  It was a completely wonderful experience, and I have so many of you to thank for your input.  It was very tough to ditch the cocktail dresses and heels for something a bit more casual, but I think I pulled it off fairly well.

Now that the "rubber has hit the road" so-to-speak, I would like some input on my current "look".  Yes--I know the wig needs to be replaced.  It's a 10 year-old, $20 purchase on eBay, and it's the only one I have  ;-)  This will be remedied soon.  I'm more concerned with the makeup, although any recommendations as far as style or color with a new wig is, of course, welcome.

For all of the pros (or amateurs!) out there, I would like to hear any advice on contouring, changes in color, etc.  I know the picture isn't the best--it was taken with a cell phone camera.

Thank you! 

As you said, it's not the best picture but from what I can tell, it looks great! I am not really one who does contouring so I can't help much there. :) /emoticons/[email protected] 2x" width="20" height="20" />

I would try peachier tones, as the red/berry toned lip seems to be bringing out the redness in your skin. That could be the camera though. As far as wigs, I would just look up hairstyles for face shapes and pick a cut that works for your face shape. Other than that I can't offer much help, since I don't really do much with my hair as far as cuts.

Looks good though, so at this point just playing with color. :) /emoticons/[email protected] 2x" width="20" height="20" />

If you really want to play more with contouring and highlighting, I would recommend reading Kevyn Aucoin’s Making Faces book. I found mine at a local used book store for under $10

This is a basic contouring map to show the placement of highlights and countours:

Thanks for your replies!  I actually (erroneously?) thought using a slightly darker lip color would match my skin tone (and look better)?  Go for something lighter?  I have a few lipsticks that are more pink... I've just always heard to never match red with pink :)

Does the face shape seem feminine?  I did very little contouring because when I try to do it, it's very dramatic... the face doesn't look very natural.  Since I'm so tall I've never expected to completelypass as a female, but I would at least like to look the part as much as possible.

I'll try to post a few clearer pics when I get made up again.  All I had with me at the time was my cell phone, and it's difficult enough to actually catch yourself in the frame...!   I think it's pretty representative though of how I looked.

EDIT--Pancua--that's the book I reference!  Let me tell you, though... sooooooooooo hard to put into practice.  I have the upmost respect for makeup artists who do this flawlessly!

You can slightly see the contouring on my nose... I tried to blend it in, but from the side I think it looks a bit... odd....  maybe I did it too dark?  I just use a brown eyeshadow to do it.

I'd recommend ALSO picking up FACE FORWARD. There are some AMAZING transformations in that book.


I hate to sound like a broken record, but I bought that book along with "Making Faces."   ;-) I guess the easiest way to describe it is watching an artist create a painting.  You can see what he does--you can understand it--but actually *doing* it is another thing.  I've watched so many vidoes on youtube regarding male-to-female transformations, and it seems so easy... yet it's not so much.  Is it the makeup?  Is it the brushes?  Is it me? 

I'm tickled to have come this far, but I want to be sure I do as much as I can do.  My main concern is if I truly look feminine... how much more do I need to do to my face to make it look truly female?  Or maybe more than that... look pretty?

I think the confidence that I have built to this point is just by paying attention.  Broken record again... but we see so many uber-feminine faces in magazines, and who wouldn't want to look like them?  But in real life, I see so many pretty faces that aren't perfect... maybe their jaw, their eyes, their skin, etc., yet still extremely beautiful.   I guess for me it's not so much being "perfect" as it is being as pretty as I can be. 

I've lived, by far, the better part of my life afraid to explore this side of myself.  I guess I've kind-of come to a point where I want to just do it.  I've been a male for 40 years (talk about your mid-life crisis!  LOL!), and although I do enjoy this part of my life, it's so nice to "recreate" myself and let go of the "always in control" and "always in charge" kind-of existence that I live.  As odd as it may seem, makeup is so liberating... maybe more for me than for a typical female, but it's a chance to step out of my role and become someone else.  Sure--I can do this in the confines of my own home, but it's more than that... I suppose it's being out and being seen and accepted by others.  My biggest fear--by far--is offending someone.  I know that not everyone is okay with a guy dressing as a girl, and how can I not respect their opinion if I expect them to respect my own?  Thus, I have a strong desire to be as inconspicuous as possible ;-)  I think most people see crossdressers as some odd individual who, well, could star in "Silence of the Lambs"!!!   Nothing could be further from the truth.  I have a wonderful family, am well-known and respected in my community, and have a professional career that has yielded me great success (although I'll be the first to admit it was more luck and circumstance than me!!!).  I just wish that I could reinvent myself sometimes as women can do via fashion and/or makeup.  Unfortunately, my foray into this is just a couple of years old, so I'm fighting for time!

Gosh--did I go anywhere with this, or did I just jump up on my soapbox?  ;-)  

Thank you so much for the replies thus-far.  It's truly warming to see people trying to help me out! 

Whoops, didn't see the edit where you referred to it. My apologies :) /emoticons/[email protected] 2x" width="20" height="20" />

Hmm....As far as you looking female, I think you DO look pretty. Not knowing where you live, I can't make solid recommendations, but maybe talking to some folks who do drag professionally and working WITH them on your own face for practice?


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