What is visagism and why is it important for makeup?

Visagism has become a starting point to achieve better results with makeup. What does this technique consist of? Find out!

Last update: 15 October, 2022

Visagism is a term coined in which ‘visage’ comes from French and means “face”, while the Latin suffix ‘ism’ equivalent to “doctrine”. From this, we can say that visagism is based on a detailed study of the face in order to find out what their strong points are to highlight them with makeup.

It is a fairly applied technique in the world of fashion, since it allows each person to wear the clothes that best suit them, wear their hair according to the physiognomy of their face and put on makeup in such a way that it enhances the features that most suit them. favor. Let’s review what it is and how it is applied in makeup.

What is visagism?

Professional makeup artists face a new challenge every time they go to work. However, there are general characteristics that categorize faces as oval, round, square, etc. This becomes a starting point for this work.

In this context, visagism is present to analyze each of the components of the face and evaluate how to make them up to achieve the best possible result. Created by Claude Juillard, it deals with studying the shapes and proportions of the face together to personalize makeup.

Its purpose is to highlight the factions and enhance the beauty of each one. For this reason, it includes the eyes, the eyebrows, the eyelashes, the nose, the cheekbones, the mouth, the chin, and even the hair and the figure of the person who will be wearing makeup.

The visajismo considers specific characteristics of the face to seek a better finish with makeup.

Visagism: face types

The shape of the face can be classified into several categories, always taking into account its characteristics. Three zones are taken to divide the face:

  1. intellectual zonewhich is measured from the birth of the scalp to the eyebrows, that is, the forehead.
  2. affective, which takes into account the distance from the eyebrows to the base of the nose.
  3. sensitive area, that takes the base of the nose to the chin.

Let us remember that we are always speaking in general terms and that the following classification may vary to a greater or lesser extent.

Oval face

Speaking in terms of makeup, this type of face would be ideal due to the proportions that its shapes keep. Many makeup professionals aim to achieve a result that emulates this type of face. On an oval face you can apply any type of makeup

Round face

As its name indicates, this face forms almost a perfect circle that radiates tenderness and delicacy. The techniques that are applied here to bring them closer to an oval face is to use shadows on the temples and chin. Likewise, in the contour of the forehead and the outer edge of the eyes, it is recommended to use a base of a darker tone.

square face

In this case, the jaws and forehead are well defined. The idea is to soften these features by applying shadow to the forehead and chin, concentrating it on the angles of the face. The makeup look should be rounded, precisely to approach an oval face.

elongated face

Also called a rectangular face, it has a square chin, well-defined temples and jaws, and the distance between the forehead and chin is important. The goal of a good makeup is to use the shadows on the temple and on the chin.

triangle face

Here the chin is visibly wider than the forehead. It is usually used the shadow in the central area of ​​the chin and on the sides of the forehead. Similarly, the sides of the lower jaw are illuminated and the blush is placed with circular movements on the upper part of the cheekbone.

inverted triangle face

This face is the other way around than the previous one; the forehead area is wide, while the chin becomes narrower. In this case, the eyebrows are enhanced and given an arch shape.

Elements of the face and visagism

As we mentioned before, the face is made up of different elements and each of them has its own characteristics.


The forehead may be wider or narrower than is conventionally taken. In any case, hair is used to equate dimensions. In the case of broader foreheads, a fringe is used that occupies part of its surface to hide its extension.

As for makeup, it is recommended to be careful with the amount of highlighter that is applied to this part of the face. Resorting to darker tones in the area where the scalp is born will give a feeling of tightness.

On the contrary, narrower foreheads need to be illuminated to give an effect of spaciousness. Likewise, lighter shades and fine eyebrows are preferred so that they do not take away space from the forehead itself.


It is one of the most controversial elements of the face because, unfortunately, beauty standards establish an ideal nose that very few people have naturally. In the case of small noses, it is suggested to apply light colors to the center.

Wide noses prefer shade from the end of the eyebrows to the tip. Regarding aquiline noses —which have a downward curve— it is recommended to apply shadow on the septum and on the tip.


Some barbels have an indentation that makes them more exposed. If so, a darker concealer can be used. On the other hand, long faces with narrow chins prefer a highlighter on the sides to widen them a bit. Finally, the wide chin will need dark tones to even out proportions.

To apply visagism when making up the face, key elements such as the chin, nose and forehead must be considered.

Visagism and its importance in makeup

Many may think that visagism only serves to unify facial styles and features, and that in this way the individuality of people is lost. Nevertheless, this technique only appeals to study the type of face thoroughly to be able to offer the makeup that best suits you. Have you put it into practice?

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