Zombie makeup

How-To with The VALiens:  Creating a realistic Zombie makeup effect


Apply makeup. You can use makeup to create the illusion of a deathly pallor. A white/grey, purple or green tint works well for most people. Go to the drugstore and look for under-eye concealer or foundation base in these colors. Also purchase some dark eyeshadow, eyeliner and baby powder.

  • Apply the base over your entire face and down your neck to get that unhealthy pallor.
  • Get directly under a light source and start using eyeshadow to accent sunken areas of your face, such as your eye sockets. Find shadows and darken those a lot.
  • Black out your eyes completely, but keep it under control. Make it look like your eye sockets have shrunken in about an inch. Get darker towards the middle and inside corners of the eyes, making sure to accent natural shadows. (you can even try a darker gray shade; this sometimes works better for a realistic effect than black).
  • Use baby powder on your face to make your skin look dull and dead.


Mess up your hair. Try to make your hair look like you just rolled out of a grave.

  • Backcomb it at the roots. Apply hairspray, then use a small comb to brush hair in the “opposite” direction (toward the roots). Do this in small sections.
  • Apply baby powder. Rub some baby powder into your hair to make it look grey and ashen.
  • If you have long hair, you can either leave it down or pull it into a messy up-do. An extremely crooked ponytail, ratty braids or a falling-apart bun look appropriately disheveled.
  • Try starting with bedhead. If you’re going to dress like a zombie first thing in the morning, try washing your hair right before you go to sleep the night before. Sleeping on wet hair will automatically make it look wild and mussed, and it might even get pushed far to one side like you’ve been lying in a grave.

Make fake blood. For one fluid cup (probably more than you’ll ever use), do this:

  • 1 cup of corn syrup or pancake syrup.
  • 1-2 tbsp of red food coloring.
  • Some chocolate syrup, like the kind you put on ice cream (not a “shell” type).
  • A couple small drops of blue or green food coloring, for color preference. This will give your “blood” a deeper, more realistic red.
  • Mix well and add small amounts of water until desired consistency/smearing factor is achieved.
  • An alternative mix uses honey for thickness and stickiness instead of corn syrup, washing-up liquid (dish soap) (e.g. Fairy Liquid) and red and blue food coloring. The washing-up liquid helps the blood wash out of your clothes later. Play around with the ratio of honey to washing-up liquid to get the right consistency – different brands vary. Be warned, though – pine-scented dish soap isn’t very tasty, so if you’re putting this mix in your mouth, use a minimal amount!
  • To get a more paste-like or thicker consistency, petroleum jelly works very well. Just mix the food dyes in, or used a crushed maroon or red eyeshadow.

Messier is better

Apply fake blood. Here’s the fun part, unless you get sick easily. Go nuts.

  • Give yourself some wounds of some kind. Dribble blood into your hairline and let it run down your face, arms, legs and hands.

everyone can be zombie!

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