Question: Tips for feminizing masculine faces?

Ginny Athena asks…

What might you suggest as some easy, fail-safe-ish tips/tricks/resources for feminizing masculine faces for this young mtf transwoman? I’ve been extremely encouraged and inspired by this site to try harder to blend my genders, but still have a somewhat crippling lack of confidence and knowledge to comfortably proceed. Thanks in advance! =)

Please post your response in the comments below.

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Posted by on December 10th, 2009 at 08:00 am

Category: questions 9 comments »

9 Responses to “Question: Tips for feminizing masculine faces?”

  1. Ebenezer

    Try using a natural shade of lipstick to change the contours of your lips. It’s a small thing, but it makes a difference. You could also try changing the shape of your eyebrows (either by pencilling or tweezing); I’ve noticed the difference it makes when sketching faces. And you could experiment with eye makeup.

    And good luck! :)


  2. Yumi

    I guess I’ll start with the obvious marker of masculinity. I myself have pretty masculine facial characteristics, but hey so do cis women ;).

    Facial hair: A biggie for me, I pluck every facial hair that is apparent at a first glance in a mirror, everything else I shave really close and good.

    Skin care: If you don’t have a skin care routine, start one and stick to it. Wash your face morning and evening, spray on some alcohol free toner and SPF 15+ moisturize accordingly.

    Eyebrows: pluck and shape a pretty feminine arch according to your eye and face shape ;)

    Makeup: I myself am going through an androgynous phase right now and I am not out at home so I don’t use much makeup other than a tinted moisturizer. It helps even out your skin tone especially for us mtf trans people that go harsh on our skin due to shaving.

    All these have helped me achieve a more feminine appearance and could pass as either gender appearance wise. Good luck!


  3. Yumi

    Ooo I forgot one important one! HRT!

    Estradiol and an antiandrogen therapy will eventually feminize facial aspects. Consult your doctor and therapist if you haven’t started or are thinking about it.


  4. Sam

    I second Ebenezer’s tip about eyebrows. To add to that, a little bit of highlighter* on the brow-bone, just under the natural arch of your eyebrows is a good trick. ( I found this to be a nice explanation on how to shape your brow.)

    As for eye makeup, a thin line of brown eyeliner along the upper lash line combined with some off-white (or other light shade) eyeshadow on middle area of your lids and on the inner corners of your eyes go a long way.

    Hope this helps. Trying is ofter the best way to figure out what works. Good luck, have fun :)

    *eyeshadow in light nude shades/off-white works (esp if there’s a little bit of shimmer)


  5. Sam

    Gosh, sorry for the typos, writing quickly is never good for me. Anyway I forgot to mention that it’s possible to contour you face with highlighter and concealer/bronzer/different shades of foundation. For that you need to know the shape of your face and then create shadows and highlights to best showcase your bone structure. Tips for specific face shapes should be easy to find. :)


  6. Joey

    To create fuller looking lips, use a nude/matching (something that very closely matches your skin/lipstick color)color and outline around the lipline a bit more thickly than lipliner would normally be applied. Then, fill in with a light colored gloss, or a lipstick that is more or less the same color as the lipliner you chose. This trick works best with darker colored lipstick and liner than doing the natural/light look.

    To create more feminine looking features around the eyes and nose, dust a light shimmery color around the space between your nose and eyes, across the further back sides of your cheekbones, and in the space just under the eyebrow. This should not significantly change the color of your skin, but in good lighting will create the illusion of slimmer and more defined ‘feminine’ features.

    Keep your hair nice, and wear it up! A higher pony tail or bun will bring your hair away from your face and show off your pretty features. : ) If your hair is too short to put up, headbands and hair accessories are a great feminizer.

    And while this isn’t facially directed, clean, well kept hands and nails are very pretty for either sex, but are seen as more feminine.


  7. Ginny Athena

    Thanks all! =D


  8. Aching Blossom

    I found this really interesting (it talks about makeup used to make you look more feminine):

    The print copy of the magazine has two b/w photos of a face. One looks male, the other looks female, and all they did was tweak the level of dark/light contrast.


  9. Anonymous

    – If you possibly can, go for electrolysis or waxing rather than shaving. Both will eventually yield permanent results, and will be kinder to your skin than shaving!
    – Moisturise, moisturise, moisturise! All the time. Everywhere. Use face packs. Beautiful plumped-up softened skin looks really feminine. Sleep in manicure gloves as often as you can, give yourself a manicure often.
    – Although it might seem counter-intuitive when you want to look as ‘feminine’ as possible, don’t put too much makeup on. I think this is the mistake many transwomen make when working towards passing. Particularly stay away from highlighting any one feature (though make it your eyes if you do) when you’re still learning.
    – Get a women’s magazine and go for a fashionable colour combination.
    – Eyebrows are really important, as others have said – but don’t pluck or thread them too thin.
    – Go for a smudgy, smokey eyeliner in pencil/kohl rather than liquid liner. Put a dot of white/pale eyeshadow or highlighter on your brow bone and the inside corner of your eye.
    – Use powder not liquid foundation as that will sink into the pores of your face and can make strong features look stronger and more masculine.
    – Don’t overload yourself with very girly accessories – follow your favourite fashion sites and go for one accessory at a time.


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