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How Bad is Halloween Makeup for Your Skin?

By October 28, 2019August 5th, 2020No Comments

Halloween is a fun time of year. It’s fun to walk down the streets with your kids all dressed up either looking scary or cute and funny. Adults love to dress up for Halloween too. It’s a time of year to wear all kinds of Halloween makeup which you can find at drugstores or costume stores.

But have you ever wondered if that Halloween makeup is safe for your children’s skin or yours? What is in the makeup? Will it cause rashes or other skin problems?

Here are some pointers about Halloween makeup and how to use it.

Products known to cause skin irritation

Face Paint

Before you put face paint on your child check to see if it contains any ingredients not approved by the FDA. Halloween makeup can contain artificial dyes, fragrances, and oils which can be irritating to your skin.

It’s wise to test the makeup on a patch of skin and if there are any severe reactions you can avoid using it.

Halloween face paint can cause irritations around the eyes, nose, and mouth. These are more sensitive areas on your face. Allergies may cause your eyes to redden and itch.

Adhesives and Glues

Super Glue can be in Halloween makeup! Or any other glue you normally would use around the house.

These glues can be damaging for your skin. If you use glue for fake eyelashes make sure none of the glue gets into your eyes because it could glue your eyelid shut.

Be sure to read the ingredients in the glue you want to buy. Stick to getting glues that are approved for stage and the theatre. These will be safer compared to Halloween makeup that uses glue in their ingredients.


The kids love to have glitter all over them sometimes. Craft glitter may be pretty but if it ends up in someone’s eye, it could be very painful.

Always buy cosmetic glitter which is made for your face. It may cost more, but it’s worth it because you’ll feel safe using it on your children.

You can apply it to your skin with a little bit of coconut oil or aloe vera gel.

Fake blood

To dress up in a real frightening Halloween costume you need fake blood.

It’s easy to make your own fake blood that won’t stain your clothes or cause skin irritations. The fake blood you get with Halloween makeup is usually red dye in a petroleum base and this combination isn’t good for your skin.

Here are a couple of suggestions:

  • Mix red pigment with dish soap and use on your clothes. It will come out much easier.
  • Mix corn syrup and a piece of old red lipstick. You can use this on your face.

You can find several recipes for fake blood if you search for them. Don’t waste your money on products that cause skin problems and never wash out of your clothes.

Plan ahead and practice making up the perfect solution to have a fun scary Halloween.

How to make sure your makeup won’t give you skin problems

Read the ingredients

Do you ever read the ingredients in your Halloween makeup? Maybe you don’t because you trust the place where you bought it, but if you don’t want to have any nightmare skin reactions, take the time to read what’s in each product you use.

Wearing heavy makeup even for one night can cause skin rashes, allergies and skin irritation. Halloween makeup is thick and hard to wash off and will clog your pores. They have harsh ingredients like preservatives and fragrances that could cause an allergic reaction.

Instead of going for the cheaper makeup in a drugstore or a Halloween costume store to get your goopy makeup, get artist-approved brands. These will be easier on your skin.

Don’t recycle last year’s makeup

It’s tempting to use the Halloween makeup you bought the previous year because you definitely didn’t use it all up. So you may think why not use it again?

The reason you don’t want to use it again is because bacteria can grow in unused containers of makeup and contaminate your skin. If your makeup smells bad be sure to toss it.

If there’s an expiration date on your makeup don’t ignore it. This gives you a good idea of how long that makeup will last before bacteria starts to grow.

Do a spot test

Test out your Halloween makeup first before slathering it all over your face. Put a small amount on the back of your hand or arm and watch to see if you have any reactions. You don’t want to start your evening with a face full of hives!

Be sure to test out your makeup a few days before Halloween. You may have to make another run to the store if you have any reaction. You may not get hives, but watch for redness and itchiness.

Prep your skin properly

Don’t put Halloween makeup over your old makeup or on dirty skin.

Before applying any Halloween makeup, clean your skin properly and then add moisturizer to help keep it from clogging your pores. Use oil free moisturizers if you’re prone to acne.

If you have sensitive skin, this is an important step to take.

Use a good adhesive remover

If you’re using false eyelashes or a creepy prosthetic, get a good adhesive remover. You can also use diluted rubbing alcohol with your adhesive remover.

First, wash your face with a gentle foaming cleanser. Then apply moisturizer and follow that with the adhesive remover.

But if your skin is sensitive, use good judgment before gluing anything on your face. You may find your skin will get irritated and you could have an allergic reaction.

Wash and repeat

At the end of a long night on Halloween you may be so tired you just want to jump into bed and sleep. But don’t skip washing off your Halloween makeup. Your pores and complexion will be happy you did.

Start with a gentle cleanser to remove all traces of makeup and that helps add moisture back into your skin.

You can use makeup remover or baby oil to remove any remaining makeup on your eyes.

You can go over your face once more with a gentle exfoliator to make sure all traces of heavy makeup is gone.

Finally, apply a good toner and moisturizer. You will sleep much better feeling clean and content after a fun and scary Halloween night.

Halloween makeup may be an important part of your costume this year. Use professional-grade theatrical makeup and keep your skin looking and feeling healthier. The cheap drugstore face paint can cause burning and stinging on your skin or your child’s skin. Don’t let toxic makeup spoil your Halloween fright night. Take care of your skin and your children’s skin even on Halloween.

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