Halloween is the perfect excuse for dressing up in something weird or wonderful, and face painting the perfect way to complete your costume. Here are tips and videos to help you with your face painting, as well as information on face painting supplies.
Practice makes perfect! Photo © Scott Gries/Getty Images
If you've never done any face painting before, these tips will help you get started thinking and planning.
Probably the most important thing is to use quality paints that have been tested to ensure they're safe and have been created for face painting. (The paints you use for crafts are not formulated to be painted on skin, even if they say "non-toxic".) Face painting is fun and rewarding, but do make safety a fundamental part of how you're working.
Photo ©2007 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
There are many brands of safe face paint readily available, such as Snazaroo, Wolfe Brothers, Fardel, Mehron, and Kryolan. Look for it at art supplies stores, costume shops, and toy stores. Don't decide you'll use your craft paint or watercolors because face paint looks expensive for the amount you get. Water-based face paints are preferable to oil-based stage makeup because it washes off easily.
If you're totally new to face painting, here are four really easy design to paint: a ghost
, a zombie
, a Clown
and a Butterfly
Photo © Karen Hudson, About.com Tattoos
Get ideas and inspiration for Halloween face painting in this photo gallery. Remember, if you're painting a party-load of kids, simpler designs are faster to finish.
Halloween face painting doesn't have to involve monsters and devils. Younger children, in particular, may prefer something gentler. Watch a face painter working from start to finish in these short videos to see how it's done: tiger face
Photo © 2009 Marion Boddy-Evans. Licensed to About.com, Inc.
In these two DVDs, professional face painter Sharon Neilson first takes you through the basics of face painting (supplies, brush strokes and effects, clean-up and safety tips) before demonstration full-face designs from start to finish. Each DVD demonstrates eight different face painting designs, including a vampire, werewolf, witch, superhero, and pirate.
These stencils are all small, suitable for painting on a cheek or forehead. They shouldn't take you very long to cut out at all.
It's messy and it's sticky, but if you want your Halloween character to involve fake blood, this recipe from About.com's Chemistry Guide is simple and effective. (Just be careful what you get it on as it involves food coloring, which tends to stain.)