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Halloween make-up tips

Whether you're putting on a ghoulish face this Halloween -- or a glittery fairy princess one -- it can be easy with some expert advice. And you don't have to spend a lot of money. You can even make your own.

Christine Brown of Wild Orchid FX in Orlando, former makeup director and designer of Busch Gardens' "Howl- O-Scream,'' has worked with the Universal Studios make-up department since 2005. She specializes in fantasy, special effects, and monster make-up.

She shares these tips for doing kids' Halloween makeup at home:

  • Apply it with craft paint brushes: Small, thin brushes for detailed work, a few medium sizes and a large, flat one for filling in big areas.
  • Look for water-based make-up in the Halloween department at drugstores. It is safe and easy to apply and to remove using soap and water. Most art supply stores such as Jo Ann's and Michael's also carry Halloween make-up.

Or check the cosmetics aisle, where you can find some regular makeup substitutes at a lower price.

  • White clown makeup: Try a pale foundation in Ivory or porcelain. It will be a more realistic base color for vampires.
  • Black cream makeup: If using for details like whiskers, freckles or outlining tiger stripes, use a brown or black eyeliner. You will have more control of the makeup and less mess.
  • Consider lipstick: It comes in a variety of colors and can be used for face painting.

First, apply a light moisturizer to skin. This will smooth the foundation and help with blending. Apply base make-up and let it dry. Then apply color with a damp sponge. Gently dab the colors together and blend edges with a dry sponge.


Sponge a thin layer of pale base over face.

Using a sponge and grey makeup, blend grey shadowing under cheek


You can also save money and avoid toxins by making your own face paint. Here's a recipe:1 tsp. cornstarch

1/2 tsp. water

1/2 tsp. all-natural diaper rash cream, such as the California Baby

1-2 drops organic food coloring

In a small bowl, mix water and cornstarch. Add baby cream and food color and mix a bit more.


Have these items handy: 

  • A head band to keep hair off the face.
  • A towel to protect clothing.
  • Makeup, make up sponges and brushes.
  • A large cup of water for rinsing brushes, if using water-based makeup. Use tissues to wipe cream-based makeup off brushes.
  • Tissues for mopping up spills or mistakes.

bones, temples, and chin and around eyes. For correct shadow placement look in a mirror and lightly press on the face. You will be able to feel where the bones are. Shade in the areas that indent.

Using a thin brush and red lip liner, paint a red outline around each eye. Smudge the red lining with sponge or Q-tip. Color the lips lightly with grey makeup. Use black makeup to darken eyebrows. Try a thick pointy shape for a dramatic and ferocious look. Drip red lipstick from the bottom lip to imitate blood.

Add black makeup to hair or use black hair spray.


Apply Vampire makeup, but paint the lips bright red.

Add purple eye shadow to the eyelids and paint a heavy black outline around eyes with black eyeliner.

For a costume, have your child wear black clothing and use a large piece of black material for a cape. Brides of Dracula could wear a long red or black dress. Wear gloves with big rings on the fingers.


Two words: face glitter.

Be sure to buy the cosmetic kind, for the face. Don't use craft glitter, which has sharp edges and can hurt if it gets into the eyes. Cosmetic face glitter is made from polyester. You can find it at Sephora and online cosmetics retailers.

Rebecca Downin, a manager at Pete's Paint Shop, a face-painting shop at Disney's Magic Kingdom, said, "Sparkle and shine make a real transformation. All of the little girls' eyes fill with excitement when they see the glitter!''