Easy DIY Halloween Face Paint


It’s actually starting to feel like October, even here. The weather channel says this morning’s cool and windy air will warm back up to the mid-70′s in time for Halloween, but today feels like trick-or-treating weather. Last year, I posted these instructions for making your own costume face paint, something I started doing at the same time that I pursued eco-friendliness elsewhere in my life, first to help my asthmatic daughter and then to lighten my own tread on the Earth and protect the rest of this family.

What’s wrong with conventional face paint, even if it’s hypoallergenic? The same thing that’s wrong with the rest of the cosmetics and fragrance industry. It’s full of chemical preservatives and other synthetics I don’t want on my girls’ faces. Plus, while face paint doesn’t actually trigger AG’s asthma, I do have to be careful about what I put on her 6 year-old sister’s sensitive, eczema-prone skin. Check out these methods for making eco-friendlier face paint. It’s easier than you think:

Face Paint

2 tbsp. shortening
5 tsp. cornstarch
1 tsp. white flour

Mix together, and add a few drops of natural food coloring for other colors. So far, we’ve only used white here, so I’m not sure how well natural food colorings work or if they stain skin and clothing the way conventional food colorings will. You could test the mixture on a hand or arm first, and I’ve heard a thin layer of olive oil under the makeup may prevent face staining.

Edible Blood

Add a few drops of natural red food coloring to chocolate syrup.

Glitter Makeup

Mix glitter into pure aloe vera gel for instant body glitter.

(Yeah, I know glitter isn’t the most eco-friendly substance in the world. But Halloween is serious business in this house, so I make an exception. Plus, at least this mixture avoids parabens and petroleum by-products.)

Here’s another alternative. Green Halloween, a natural, community-based, healthier holiday movement sponsored by Treeswing, likes washable face pencils.

Somewhat-daily Halloween link:
Barack O’ Lanterns
No explanation necessary.

9 responses to “Easy DIY Halloween Face Paint”

  1. wendy says:

    I think it’s a good idea to make your own face paint. There is just so much crap out there for small children. I wonder how flame resistant those flimsy halloween costumes are? Or have they poured chemicals to make them flame resistant, but guaranteed to produce rashes??
    Ohhhh – I sound cynical!

    Glad you posted this. I posted making your own playdoh on my blog. We used to do this years ago (you were probably in diapers back then) LOL! I’d better stop laughing – or someone will guess my age!

    Seriously – have a safe and fun Halloween!

  2. Andie says:

    thanks so much for posting this … I was thinking of scouring your site because I remember it from last year :)

    It has gotten COLD up in my neck of the woods. The temperature tomorrow is predicted between 0 degrees celsius & 4 degrees celsius. (I think 0 celsius is 32oF?? The freezing point of water?) Anyway, jolly cold. Our little ones may well have their snowsuits on underneath their costumes for Hallowe’en night. Didn’t you know snowsuits really go with princess costumes? (we haven’t been hit with princess costumes yet, but all the little girls I know seem to want to be princesses).

  3. Amy says:

    Wendy, I noticed that play-doh post and thought just the same thing.

    Andie, I think it’s actually going to be cold here Halloween night, too. Nothing like your temps, of course, but definitely chillier than usual.

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