In the world of makeup there are a lot of products, and their uses overlap eachother on a regular basis. Sometimes these products can serve many different purposes, and no harm is done. But there are two products that should forever and always be kept distinguished as to completely separate products: the contour and the bronzer.
There are some similarities. Both products should be darker than your skintone. Both products come in different shapes and sizes; powder, liquid, stick and cream. It’s the use of the products that make the different: The contour is for shading, and sculpting. It should be matt and mauve in colour, and therefore work as a shadow that does not attract light. A typical use for the contour is beneath the cheekbones, to create the illusion of more depth. The bronzer on the other hand, is shimmery or even sparkly. It’s more warm in colour than the contour, and it’s purpose is to create a sunkissed glow. The bronzer is usually placed at the highlighting points of the face, to brighten and lighten the face.
As makeup is basically color theory on your face, the rules of light attracts and enlarges and dark extracts and minimizes is the key. If mistaking the contour for the bronzer and vice versa can look quite disastrous. The rule of thumb is: Contour on the places you want smaller, bronzer on the places you want to stand out.