NYX Cream Highlight & Contour Palette – Review | Swatches | Demo (Updated)

Nyx cream (1)Welcome back! Time for more contouring from a pale girl’s perspective.

Today I have a review of the Nyx Cream Highlight and Contour Palette. I reviewed this palette some time ago and it’s one of my most visited post I noticed but since then, my opinions have changed and to be honest, the photography sucked so I wanted to update the pics and my thoughts for you guys.

Since my first time reviewing this little guy I have tried a number of contour products and there are so much more on the market now from every brand and they are still steadily being released so I wanted to take a look back on a cream contour I used to love and see if it still stacked up to how I felt when I purchased it.



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NYX Cream Highlight and Contour Palette 



I have also included better swatches and a revised demonstration of how I use this product.

The Packaging


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NYX Cream Highlight and Contour Palette 


The packaging is minimal and clean. The font has since been updated since I purchased mine and looks much nicer now. It’s just a typical drugstore plastic compact with 3 pans, 2 larger, and 1 smaller.

The Breakdown + Swatches


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NYX Cream Highlight and Contour Palette 


Inside you have a larger pan which contains the contour shade and smaller one with an illuminating shade and again a larger one with the matte highlight shade. You can see mine is well loved as I have hit pan on the contour and matte highlight.

The texture is stiff, not super creamy, almost sticky. That sounds bad but it warms up with your skin and can blend pretty easily. I find it being stiffer makes it easier to not over apply and it is buildable. It can get somewhat heavy however but I find mixing in a little face oil sheers it out and makes it very easy to blend and work with on my drier skin type.

The higher-end cream contours are definitely creamier and softer but for a drugstore option, this isn’t bad. Especially if you just want to try out cream contouring and don’t want to invest so much in a palette.  I use mine pretty regularly when I do more dramatic looks.


NYX Cream Highlight and Contour Swatches in Light


The Nyx Cream Highlight and Contour Palette is available in 3 shade sections. Light, Medium, and Deep. Honestly, the deep isn’t very deep though. They could have gone deeper so not everyone will be able to find an option here which is a shame.   I feel like they could have done a 4th option with deeper tones.

I only purchased the Light to try out on myself so I don’t have swatches of the other shades.

The Light is perfect for porcelain, fair to light skin tones. Especially the contour shade. It’s a lovely cool toned taupe. It can be applied lightly or built up for more impact. The contour has just the right balance in tone. It’s cool toned but not grayish. NYX always does great on pale girl contour shades.

I love the contour shade in the palette, most times I only apply a small amount of the matte highlight, not under the eyes because it is far too heavy for under the eyes but fine for cheek bones.  The Highlight has a faint yellow leaning neutral undertone which is brightening. I think they could have gone a hair lighter and more neutral with this one but it gets the job done.  I feel like the highlight can get very cakey if you apply too much. I really sheer it out and use a light hand with normally.

The Illuminate isn’t my favorite. I don’t use often. It’s a pretty color but something about the texture I don’t love. It’s just sticky. It’s not overly shimmery and not glittery and should look great but I’m not a fan. That being said I prefer a powder highlight for my glow.

The Application + Demo

As I said, I like to mix a couple drops of face oil in the palette and mix it in just to aid in blending. If you have oily skin, I would skip doing that and use a damp beauty sponge for blending out.


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Facial Oils 



I use a flat contour brush to apply the contour, and a round foundation brush to blend or a beauty sponge. For the highlight, I either use a flat paddle style foundation brush to apply and blend with a sponge or I just dab the sponge straight into the highlight and dab and blend.

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Sonia Kashuk Brushes 


I prefer applying cream contour under my foundation because it gives a softer more natural appearance but for the demo, I did a thin layer of foundation first as most people tend to use cream contour after foundation.  You can apply the cream contour in anyway you like really. Apply it all at one time and blend, or one at a time which is how I do it.

Starting out I have a thin layer or E.L.F. Flawless Finish Foundation all over my face and a little bit of Kat Von D Lock-It Concealer under my eyes.


I went in with the highlight. I know it looks like I have a lot of product on but that is a very thin layer as it can get textured and cakey if you use too much. It can look really heavy.

I applied it to all the areas I like to bring forward or brighten; the center of the forehead, down the bridge of the nose, cheekbones, corner of the mouth, cupids bow, chin and under where I would contour my cheeks along my jaw.


I blended the highlight out with a damp beauty sponge from Eco Tools.


Then I added in my contour on the flat contour brush. I took the excess product off on the back of my hand.

I applied the contour in the hollows of my cheeks, down the sides of my nose up to the brow and around the tip to give it a more refined shape, around the temple lightly, and along the jawline.

I also like to put a little bit under my bottom lip, my chin dent and down the dent in the cupids bow. I’m a little extra like that. If I am gonna cream contour, I’m going all the way.



I used the same damp sponge from Eco Tools to blend out the contour color, making sure to blend in an upward motion in the cheek hollow. You never want to blend downward.


Now for the Illuminate shade. I dabbed the Illuminate shade on the high points of my cheek bones, cupids bow and tip of the nose with an E.L.F. Stippling Brush


Again, I blended the Illuminate out on the same sponge. I am just not a fan of the way it emphasizes skin texture and I feel like my nose got a little cakey.


Here’s how the cream contour looked once I finished my face with setting powder, a little powder contour, blush, and highlighter.


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The Verdict

Is it a bit much for every day? Yep. Does it stack up to high-end cream contours? Not really, but if you are wanting to dabble in cream contour, it’s a great starting point. It works perfectly fine if you have the patience to blend blend blend. I would especially recommend the palette to pale girls like me because the contour shade is so perfect. I am willing to deal with the stiff texture for the contour color and price point. I initially had given this palette a better review but since trying other cream products I changed my mind over time.

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Don’t get me wrong though, it’s not a bad product. It’s just okay. I’m going to continue using mine until I run out then pick up a higher-end one to replace it. Looking forward to checking out Kat Von D’s and the New Urban Decay Naked Skin Shapeshifter eventually.

I purchased mine from Ulta.com. The NYX Cream Highlight and Contour retails for $15.00

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15 thoughts on “NYX Cream Highlight & Contour Palette – Review | Swatches | Demo (Updated)

  1. I was wondering about this product and wasn’t sure if it was worth the buy but now I thinking give it a try! Thanks


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