Zombies and pirates and Gagas, oh my!

Zombies and pirates and Gagas, oh my!

Rachel Bingham

Zombies and pirates and Gagas, oh my!  Halloween is the one day out of the year you can be something or someone you’re not.  Blue wigs, false eyelashes and cheaply made witches robes line the isles of Wal-Mart, Target, and the local Halloween shop that’s only open in the fall.  Some costumes look spectacular, while others look like they were figured out and thrown together in 20 minutes tops.  Makeup (not only on your face) can help to make your costume stand out.


When applying fake blood to your clothing and body, corn syrup and red food dye does the trick.  You can thicken it with a pinch of powder, or thin it out with warm water.  But drawing blood on your face (say, if you’re a vampire) is created best with lip product.  You don’t want a red tone that is too orangey, and you don’t want to have any pink tones to it, either.  Think about your favorite crime investigation show when the autopsies get a little too graphic.  That’s the perfect shade – these folks know what they’re doing!  This applies to your corn syrup and dye, and your lip products.   Tarte for True Blood Limited-Edition LipSurgence Natural Lip Tint ($24 at Ulta) is the perfect color and consistency to fill in your lips and drag down your chin a bit.  If you need to go a cheaper route, try Revlon Just Bitten Lipstain + Balm by Colorstay – Gothic ($7.98 at Wal-Mart).


Bruises add a very real effect, and they are not hard to create.  A bruise wheel (appx. $12 online or in your favorite Halloween section) contains deep colors that can be blended together for a convincing look.  Use a makeup wedge (32-pack for $2.79 at Target) to dab on a deep red shade over the area.  Don’t try to be perfect with it – too much of a pattern can make it look fake.  Set the layer with E.L.F. Translucent Powder ($3 at Target).  Go back over the bruise using a stipple sponge ($1.99 at Party City).  This will create texture and make your bruise appear to have broken capillaries.  Set your second layer with translucent powder, and you’re set!


White Face Paint ($2.99 at Party City) is your best bet at creating just what you need.  Ghosts and skeletons can get away with keeping the paint white, but if you are a green-faced witch or red-skinned devil, you just need to add a few drops of food coloring.  At the end of the night, simply wipe your face clean with a warm, soapy, wet washcloth.


Creamy black eyeliner is essential for practically any costume.  Whether you’re drawing shadows to make your face look drawn in, stars to resemble a KISS member, or dark, smudgy lines around your eyes, a black creamy eyeliner can do the trick.  Sephora Collection Smoky Kohl Eyeliner ($12 at sephora.com) is a fantastic choice to amp up the drama with any look you’re going for.  Another great option is Revlon Luxurious Color Smoky Crayon ($8.49 at Target).


Calling all Lady Gagas and showgirls!  The main thing you need to worry about this year is glitter.  NYX Glitter Cream Palette ($5.99 at Ulta) is a gel-based formula that glides on and holds the glitter.  You can use a thin layer for sparkle, or a thicker coat for a more dramatic look.   These can also be layered with shadow, but be careful not to smudge off your undercoat of color!   If you’re looking for only one color, try out LA Splash Crystalized Glitter ($6.99 at Ulta).  Now throw your glitter in your clutch purse, and you’re ready to hit the costume parties!