10 Cool, Creepy, and Cheap Halloween Makeup Tricks


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boy and girl wearing halloween costume with pumpkin
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It's easy to overspend on an elaborate costume at Halloween. Instead of stocking up on specialized Halloween makeup at a pop-up costume shop, head to the drugstore -- or to your makeup bag. These 10 looks, from spooky to downright frightening, can be created from products likely to be found in most homes.

Related: 24 Frightfully Fun Halloween Events Across the Country

tube of eyelash glue
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A creepy Joker-esque mouth gash is surprisingly easy to re-create with instructions from PopSugar. Start by gathering some tissue paper and eyelash glue (less than $4 at Target). Dab on the adhesive wherever you want to create a wound, then cover the glue with strips of tissue. Let the glue dry, and use eyeliner to extend the mouth onto the tissue. Apply red lipstick and eye shadow to the tissue to simulate damaged flesh.

Related: 13 Cheap and Trendy Halloween Costumes for 2016

fake blood
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Fake blood isn't the most expensive thing to buy, but DIY versions are easy and don't require a trip to the store. Simply mix a bit of red lipstick, black eyeliner, and clear lipgloss for an icky, sticky substance. WikiHow has a recipe that uses ketchup, water, corn syrup, and food coloring.

woman legs in fishnet stockings
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Use fishnet stockings as a stencil for creating scales with shimmery green eyeshadow. Seventeen suggests this as mermaid makeup, but it would also help create a reptilian monster effect.

cosmetic pencil and stroke
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Make a scary-looking bite mark with two dots of black eyeliner, a little pinkish eye shadow surrounding them, and the fake blood recipe of your choice dripping from the "holes." Or go for a subtler effect with a tutorial shared on Brit + Co's Snapguide.

woman putting artificial fingernail on the finger
Photo credit: dean bertoncelj/shutterstock


Creep-ify hands to look like they've been tearing into flesh. Cut fake nails to create jagged edges, glue them on, and paint with a mix of cream makeup and fake blood, smudging it onto fingertips and the skin around the nail, as well.

fake nails
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Who knew fake nails had a dual purpose? Cut the nails down to points and attach to teeth with dental wax from a drugstore. WikiHow also proffers an easier method: Cut a plastic straw into small pieces (with fangs at the front) that slip over canines or incisors.

fake wound on wrist
Photo credit: Yuttapol Phetkong/shutterstock


A realistic (and gross) head wound can be made with just a nontoxic glue stick and supplies in a regular cosmetics kit with instructions from PopSugar. Cut and apply pieces of glue, then cover in foundation and any type of red and purple makeup, such as blush, lipstick, or shadow. Scribble a little black eyeliner in the wound and cover with red lip gloss.

mascara wand and black mascara
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Halloween makeup doesn't get easier than creating facial stubble where there is none. For this gender-bending look, use a mascara wand to stipple on a couple different shades of brow corrector.

woman in day of the dead mask skull face art
Photo credit: Marcel Jancovic/shutterstock


Instead of buying an elaborate masquerade mask, paint one on. There are many examples online, and they usually require little more than basic makeup and a lot of patience.

female werewolf costume
Photo credit: Casther/shutterstock


No need to buy a werewolf mask. Just stroke on black or brown eyeliner around the hairline, eyes, and sides of face. Color in the tip of the nose and lips with black, add fangs, and voilà -- a suitably scary, furry look.

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