Stage Makeup 101

Ever watched a play or movie and thought, I want to know how they make them look like that (and not with CG)?  Want to know how you can rock the best Halloween makeup ever?  

Why do I need stage makeup?

  • Great Halloween costumes
  • Dress-up for kids
  • Pranks! (think wounds and scary stuff)
  • New hobby
  • Become your favorite movie/book/show character for fun
  • Get involved in local community theatre
  • New profession

 

Let's get started already!

 

To Read and Watch

 

stage makeup book

 

Supplies Needed

 

Ben Nye bruise wheel

 

Makeup

There is creme and cake makeup.

 

Creme you apply directly to the face via fingers, sponge, or brush.  You can mix shades on the back of your hand (a great place!) or in a palette to get the right shade.  You then set lightly with powder.

 

Cake makeup you dampen the sponge. Too little and the color won't come off the sponge onto your surface.  Too damp and it'll run.  You may need to experiment with it.

 

Eye shadow, blush, bronzers, mascara, and lipstick - enough said.

 

Concealers and tattoo covers.  These are heavy duty.  They'll cover up birth marks, 5 o'clock shadows, blemishes, and tattoos.  If you used them in daily life though you'd look funny.  But on stage or in a movie, you're gold.

 

Appliance Makeup

These are used over prosthetics using liquid latex, derma wax, nose putty, and gelatin.  You use a red rubber sponge to stipple or press the paint on, never rub.  It goes on smooth, keeps its color, and doesn't absorb onto the surface.

 

Airbrush paints

They can be used to cover up imperfections, used as body makeup, make thin hair look thick, make tattoos, cover up latex and prosthetic.  I won't be going into airbrushing techniques because, well, I don't have the tools for it.  Sorry!

 

You can use creme and cake together but you have to be careful.  You can do cake then add creme parts on top. Or use creme and then use cake to tone it down.  Or creme highlights and cake shadows.  If you want it really intense, use cake and then cover it all up with creme.

[Tweet "Getting into character is easy and fun."]

 

Get Into Character

 

Disclaimer: #1 The woman in the picture isn't me, #2 This isn't about ugly v beautiful, this is about altering our face to be someone else for fun!

 

face divided

 

 

The face is divided into 3 parts:

  1. from hairline to eye brows
  2. from eyebrows to the bottom of the nose
  3. from the bottom of the nose to the bottom of the chin

 

Highlight and Shading Rule: Light colors reflect light and attract the eye and dark colors absorb light and attract less attention.

 

Forehead

 

You want to make the forehead look lower?  Use a foundation color that is 2-3 shades darker than the face.  Blend it downwards into the face from the hairline so that you can't see where it ends and the normal color begins.

 

Want a higher forehead?  Do the opposite.  Use a lighter color and blend upwards into the hairline.

 

A narrow forehead is made by shadowing the temples and blending it into the forehead.  A wider forehead by highlighting the temples into the hairline.

 

If the forehead is too prominent put shadow of them and then highlight the depressed areas.  No more neanderthal head!

 

 

Left it darker so you can see where it should be placed

 

Nose Goes

 

You want it shorter, shade under the tip and bring it over the tip. You can add a highlight at the top of the nose as well.

 

For a longer nose take the highlight from the top of the nose all the way down and under the tip.  Same principles from above apply.

 

Narrow nose, shade the sides.  Wider nose, highlight the sides.  If it's crooked, do a narrow highlight down the nose and shadow on the crooked looking parts.

 

Remember, in real life you blend!

 

Chin and Jaw

Do the same ideas with this area.  Shade what you don't want people to notice and highlight what you want people to notice more.  Double chin?  Shadow!

 

Wrinkles

Wrinkles can't be hidden completely.  Sorry.  You can highlight the natural shadows and shadow the highlight.  Same idea for bags under the eyes.

 

wrinkles

 

Eye-Spy

 

Want them closer together?  Shade the place where the eye socket and nose meet.  Pencil in the start of the eyebrow more, extend it further into the nose area.  Line the top lid, the inner corner and just a portion of the lower lid, at the corner.

 

Further apart? Pencil in the brow, a bit more at the tip.  Line the top lid and extend it out beyond the lash line.  line the lower lid, outside portion of the lid.

 

To turn the eye up shade up from the outer corner, same with eyeshadow in the crease.  To turn the lid down extend the line down and same with the eyeshadow.   Highlighting around the eye make it smaller.  Shading the eye and darkening it, and extending the brow make it larger.

 

wider set eyes

 

 Cheeks

Want thinner cheeks? The part that is too round should be shaded.  Want round cheeks? Highlight them.   Place blush on the cheekbone.  You can also place it in various locations for additional shaping.  Under cheekbones to hallow them.  Nearer the ears (and away from nose) to widen the face, nearer the nose (and away from ears) to narrow the face.

 

full cheeks

 

Lips

For women you can change lip shape by over-painting.  That means you take your lip pencil and draw the shape and size you want.  Then fill it in.  Only do this to men if it will look natural!  To define your upper lip add a thin highlight above the lip line.

 

Thinner?  Cover with foundation. then use lip color (not deep colors) inside the lip and fade out into foundation.

 

Narrower?  Place lip color in the center of your lips and use foundation on the outer corners.

 

Wider?  This is hard to remedy naturally.  Extend the lip color to the extremes of the lips, especially the upper lip.  Don't turn it into a cartoon (unless that's what you're gong for).

 

 

full lips

 

Put it Into Practice

 

Now we have the foundations down.  You can add these all together to create a different face shape for yourself or for your character.  If you don't have professional makeup, you can still use regular makeup, just make sure you get a good shadow and highlight color.  You don't want shimmery stuff, just a nice matte or regular sheen to it.  Good coverage = no tinted moisturizer!

 

whole face

 

Try These Combos

  • High, wide forehead. Pinched chin. Thin lips, wide eye set eyes. Short thin nose.   Thin cheeks
  • Low, wide forehead. Rounded jawline, cleft chin. Full lower lip, thin upper lip.  Small eyes, large nose.
  • Narrow, medium height forehead.  Square jawline, pointed chin - heart shaped. Full upper lip, normal lower lip.  Large eyes, close together.  Full cheeks. Narrow nose.

 

Did you have fun?

 

 

before and after 2

 

Next week we'll do something fun!  Maybe scabs and wounds, or what we look like old.  If you're already old I didn't just say that.  If you want one over the other, please comment below.  Stay tuned to see which one is picked!