Nonplussed: Keep on Contourin’ in the Free World

During quarantine, like many others, I turned to TikTok for entertainment. For hours I would scroll through dance after dance, financial tips from twenty-somethings, and people who all seemed to have secret rooms in their McMansion. I’ve often dreamed of a secret myself, but that is because I dwell in tiny apartments (Literally though, I’ve had a recurring dream since my 20s about my tiny 450sq foot apartment from that time, we find a secret room giving us more space. It’s always the same dream and last time my former roommate was dating our creepy landlord—what does it mean?!).

Quickly I became obsessed with the trend of contour makeup (aka shapeshifting or transforming your actual face) on the platform. I was mesmerized by the process, how long it took and the artistry behind it. At the same time, I was baffled by the movement because many of these people literally had different faces after applying their contour. Naturally, I had some questions:


  • Does it come off when it’s humid or when you sweat?
  • How long does this take to put on?
  • Do you do this every day?
  • If yes to question 1, do you have to reapply?
  • So when you’re dating somebody, what do you do when you go to sleep?
  • How hard is it to get this stuff off?
  • Does it get all over your clothing or your sheets?
  • When people see your real face, is it weird?
  • Do you prefer your contour face over your real one?

To keep entertained in lockdown I filmed myself on Instagram stories, discussing different topics each day. I promised my followers that whenever a vaccine became available I would pay to have my face professionally contoured and share it on the platform. A woman of my word, I delivered.

May 11th, 2021 as promised:

It started with a post to Glamsquad looking for the right makeup artist:

Glamsquad listing

They sent us the amazing Niko Maragos. Niko was professional, patient, and followed all Covid protocol, he made our contour shapeshifting dreams come true.

After the transformation, my friend Alex and I decided to take our new faces out on the town to Gemma.

Here is the rest of our content story below:

Here is my real face and face with standard makeup

And now, the transformation!

Alex’s Before and after:

While I am certainly no contour expert, my investigative journalism has answered SOME of my questions. The makeup stayed on well all night, it took about 2 hours to apply, I went to sleep in it and it did NOT get on my sheets and it actually stayed on! While I enjoyed my contour face, I’m going to stick with the one I’ve got. If anybody has answers to the other questions, please reach out. @LauraJuneKirsch

Laura’s book “Romantic Lowlife Fantasies” is still available for pre-order, you can find that here.