How to Use Existing Makeup for Halloween

in this photo, Adaleta Avdic is showing her new palette from MAC that is filled with eyeshadows, bronzer, blush, and highlighter.

How to Use Existing Makeup for Halloween

October 29, 2019

Halloween makeup can be a lot of fun, but truthfully it is a little stressful. I always say I'm going to do a trial run, but time slips away and sometimes I don't get to it. One thing I try to do is use products I already have because you don't need to break the bank on Halloween makeup. If makeup has never been your thing, I'd look into getting it done. If you didn't know, MAC offers free makeup application with a $50 purchase. If you shop there frequently, it's worth stocking up on a few of your favorite products and taking the stress off of makeup application off your plate. I usually do a walk-in appointment, but during the holidays and prom season, it's probably best to book an appointment. Benefit Cosmetics and even some retailers (like Ulta or Sephora) do makeup for events too, which is totally worth it since you'll likely experience new products and your makeup will look bomb. Make sure to book ahead, so they have time for you. For some costumes and looks, it's a little more extensive and difficult, and there's nothing wrong getting help! 

Face Paint

We have a Halloween costume store on nearly every corner here in town and they're all filled with tons of options for face paint. I have pretty sensitive skin so I find the oil base paints  uncomfortable on so many different levels. If you're like me or don't want to purchase anything you won't use again, try using a stencil to map out your design. Once you've mapped it out, apply primer and lay on the eyeshadow. One of my friends used fishnets as a stencil and applied green and blue eyeshadow to create a mermaid look!  


I love this one from NARS because it lasts throughout the day and into the night, without smudging and it's currently on sale. Don't know about you, but sales are always a good idea. With a wide range of colors, there's something perfect for every costume. 

There are several things you can use in place of eyeliner, so if you don't have eyeliner handy, it's definitely not the end of the world. You can get pretty creative to achieve the same look because all you need is a skinny, fine-tipped brush. You can dip it into a mascara tube, or brush mascara on it to apply it. If you do this, I would recommend doing this before you do anything else, because you'll probably have to use a q-tip to sculpt it. Eyeshadow is another great option in place of eyeliner. I did this in place of eyeliner a few months ago when I forget eyeliner on my trip and it worked perfectly, as long as you have a thin brush and apply the eyeliner color to the edge of the lid.


I have a hard time with strip lashes because I usually manage to screw them up, but I love how they open up my eyes! (Ada has had lash extensions for some time so she doesn't use these at the moment.) I learned a few weeks ago though that applying them underneath your natural lashes is a total game-changer. There are a ton of videos out there to coach you through this on YouTube. I like these lashes from Baseblue Cosmetics, and the packaging makes it so easy to save them for another occasion! 


It can be hard to perfectly achieve the Neopolitan ice cream look on your cheeks but using a card of some kind can help you sculpt. I use a debit card or a greeting card to make sure my contour is even on both sides. I learned this from a friend several years ago when she went as a zombie. I also use a card when applying mascara, so I don't get mascara on my lids or undereye. Depending on your costume, you could probably get away with using eyeshadow.


If you need to make them disappear for the night, there's a pretty easy way to do it. You'll just need a glue stick and some concealer. Using your glue stick, coat your brows several times. You'll need them to dry completely between coats. After a few layers, cover them with concealer and set with setting powder. It works like a charm! I'd recommend using an oil-based cleanser to wash it off. 

Lip Products

I don't have any swaps for this one, but if you need a color that you don't feel you'll wear again, Wet n Wild has a ton of lip colors that are less than $3. You can pick them up at your local drug store, or Ulta, and not break the bank. You likely won't need the blue or green lipstick until next Halloween, so why not get a budget friendly option?

in this photo, Adaleta Avdic has arranged a flat lay of some of her favorite makeup products including foundations, highlighters, primers, lip balms, and eye products.

How do you utilize the products you have already to achieve your Halloween look?