Halloween Makeup Ideas for a Bewitching Transformation
The face gazing back at you in the mirror is drawn and pale. Your eyes are lost in ominous shadows and your lips are the color of blood. You look perfect. Every year on Halloween, beauty takes on a different meaning—and you become someone new. Unlike a mask, which simply disguises your identity, makeup works an eerie magic: It can turn you into a more frightful, or more fantastical, version of yourself.
Makeup artist Tim Considine of Direct Effects in Los Angeles has made a career of giving ordinary faces shocking, often gruesome, new looks. To create makeup miracles, you'll need some basic supplies such as cream makeup or grease paint, spirit gum or other adhesive, shadows, pencils, and powder. Before using any product, be sure you have the appropriate remover. Some substances can be washed off with soap and water; others, such as spirit gum, call for special solvents. Always apply makeup to a clean face for smooth, even application. Use a light touch. "Stop before you think you've done enough," Considine advises. "You can always go back and apply more, but you'll have a lot more work removing makeup and starting over."
Whatever look you decide upon, never use any adhesive on your skin that isn't made for that purpose—or you may be, quite literally, stuck with your new face. Once your makeup is complete, you may find yourself under its spell—taking on the traits of your chosen character. Enjoy the transformation. At the end of the night, you'll wash your face and be you again, at least for another year.
A flutter of her eyelashes is all it takes to lure you in like a moth to the flame. For Martha's aptly named "Motha" costume, she completed her look with eye shadow in ginger, coffee ground, and truffle shades; feathered lashes; and whimsical wings around the eyes, adding dimension and flair to the makeup look created by Krisofer Buckle. To recreate her look, print the wing clip-art onto white heavyweight matte paper and gently curl outer edges of wings around a pencil or small makeup brush. Embellish false eyelashes with small pheasant feathers, which are available at crafts stores.
Masked Phantom Makeup
Kevin Sharkey's phantom mask is so dramatic, it's all the costume you need. To recreate his look, place a folded paper towel just above the eyebrows, securing on both sides with hair clips. Fully moisten a sponge with water, then load with makeup: Apply blue cream makeup along bottom edge of paper towel, covering the eyebrows, the eyelids, and the bridge of nose. With a clean sponge, apply white cream makeup under blue, blending to create an ombré effect. To increase contrast, darken the top of the mask by adding black cream makeup to blue cream makeup with a clean moistened sponge. Line both eyes with blue and black eyeliner pencils, and you're ready to haunt.
A werewolf is a passing transformation, but this makeup by longtime Martha Stewart Living editor Kate Berry leaves a lasting impression. To emulate her bold beauty look, use an earthy mix of gold and copper tones in shimmery finishes. First, take a moistened sponge and blend white cream makeup onto the face; contour by applying bronzer underneath the cheekbones with a blush brush, sweeping upward to the hairline. Brush an earthy mix of gold and copper eye shadows, and finish with a bronze lipstick.
On Halloween, a skeleton is one of the most chilling figures, but our modern version has a sleek, startling beauty. To become a bone-chilling skeleton yourself, apply white crème color, black liquid paint to create sunken eye sockets, and a combination of white and black liquid face paint to carve out the cheekbones and jawline. Use a small angled brush to better draw in the finer details: teeth, the collar bone, tiny cracks and lines.
Gray Lady Ghost Makeup
This gray lady ghost proves that the enchanting can be even more thrilling than the ghoulish. If you aspire to a hauntingly ethereal beauty, wear a mask of white face paint resembling a veil. It's a simple effect: cut a doily in half, center its decorative edge on the forehead, and hold in place. Dab white face paint on forehead with a makeup sponge, stenciling the lacy pattern and paint around scalloped edges. (It helps to have a helping hand.) And wear white lip paint.
One look into those electrifying golden eyes, and you'll be cast under her spell. For Martha's Spellbinding Sorceress costume, she framed her smoky eye with sparkling brows and mystical tattoos (temporary, of course). To evoke her beauty, apply temporary tattoos to the forehead and around the eyes; create a slanted cat's-eye; apply bronzer and a light-colored lipstick. And here's an extra trick: For extra fullness, glue together multiple sets of lashes (Martha is wearing three pairs) and then apply to the upper lid.
Ghostly Equestrienne Makeup
Like the headless horseman, she rides under the atop a midnight-black steed. For Martha's Ghostly Equestrienne costume, she donned a veiled top hat and taffeta cape with Victorian-style grandeur and her face was blended to a ghostly pallor. Create a similar look with liquid foundation (in the lightest shade available) and buildable white face powder (one that will become more opaque the more you apply), plus gray and red eye shadow.
Women of horror tales nevertheless emulate a stark beauty—hence, this makeup idea. For Martha's Glampire costume, she emulated the beauty of a vampire with ivory skin and bloodstained lips. Create this look by applying an ivory foundation, followed by a white liquid makeup, then white loose powder to set. Darken the eyebrows with an ebony eyeliner pencil (elongating the brows for dramatic effect) and wear a darkly rich lipstick.
Everything you need to pull off this dramatic face is already in your makeup bag. To take your makeup from career girl to Cruella, download the template and use the eyebrow stencil to trace new brows with black gel liner and a small brush. With black eye shadow, go over the natural brows. Use the cat-eye template to brush on cat eyes; fill in, leaving the inner corners blank. Add pink blush and red lipstick, smudging with your finger as needed, to soften the look.
Golden Goddess Makeup
Worship this look? So do we. For Martha's Golden Goddess costume, she accentuated her gilded look with a mix of makeup products in ivory white, shimmering gold, bronze, and pinkish brown hues to give her a soft, heavenly glow. Create a shimmery appearance for yourself this Halloween using ivory foundation, white liquid makeup, white loose powder, and gold shimmer eye shadow. As a last touch, apply shimmery light-peach lipstick and top it with just a dash of gold shimmer eye shadow as the highlight.
Even a ragged, dragged-from-the-crypts costume can be done to dramatic effect. For this mummified makeover, use ingredients from your kitchen: paper towels, cold coffee, and a mixed paste from flour and corn syrup tinted with brown cream makeup. The wrapped bandages are made from paper towels dipped in coffee, without wringing, and the paste is smeared onto the face, followed a covering layer of bandages.
Bring a little brilliance to the "brrr!" look of this ice queen. Starting with a blush brush, apply medium-blue eye shadow under the cheeks, up onto the temple, and down the nose. Brush a little pink blush onto the cheeks. Go over everything with white shadow. With a small brush, apply dark-blue shadow to the upper crease and out half of the eye lid. Apply white shadow to the inner corners of the lids, and dab, smudging out the colors for a shimmering frozen effect. Cut thin strips of silver card stock, and lightly curl them to mimic eyelashes; mix blue shadow with petroleum jelly for a radiant lip color; and, for extra shine, adhere a few gemstone stickers around the hairline.