How to Make Halloween Face Painting Look Like Fake Cuts & Bruises

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Special effects makeup can really add to the overall appearance of your Halloween costume, but applying it may seem daunting if you're not familiar with the basic techniques. Creating fake bruises and cuts on your face with makeup requires only a few supplies and tools. While you don't need much artistic skill for this type of face painting, you do need a little practice.


Test your makeup skills a few days in advance, so by Halloween you will have perfected your look. Both beginners and veterans of makeup application techniques should find our step-by-step tutorial and hacks useful for creating the DIY prank look you're after.

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Things You'll Need

  • Cream makeup (dark purple, dark red, dark blue or black, yellow)

  • Makeup sponges

  • Mortician's wax (color of skin tone)

  • Plastic knife

  • Makeup brush

  • Baby powder

  • Fake blood

Creating Bruises

1. Apply the purple makeup

Dip a makeup sponge into dark purple cream makeup and apply a thin coat of it to your clean skin in spots that you want to appear bruised. Try to avoid creating a perfect shape such as a circle or triangle with the makeup as bruises generally have an irregular shape.

2. Blend the edges

Blend the edges of the purple makeup with your fingers so that the makeup gradually fades into your skin. The bruise should be dark purple in the center and fade to a light purple at the edges.


3. Apply and blend the red makeup

Apply red cream makeup to the center of the bruise with a makeup sponge and gently blend the edges. Don't cover up all the purple makeup.

4. Add blue or black makeup

Repeat step 3 with dark blue or black cream makeup. Try to add just a little of the makeup, so you can still see the purple and red makeup. This gives the bruise depth and makes it look more realistic.


5. "Heal" with yellow makeup

Apply yellow cream makeup to the bruise in the places where the red, purple and dark blue colors start to get lighter and blend into the skin. This will make the bruise look as if it is starting to heal.



1. Shape the wax or putty

Shape a piece of mortician's wax or putty into a 1/2-inch-diameter ball. You can find this material anywhere that special effects makeup is sold. For the most realistic effect, look for a wax that matches your own skin tone.



2. Press the wax to your skin

Press the wax ball onto your clean skin to create the fake cut. Flatten the ball and spread it out until it is approximately 1/4 inch thick in the center and the edges have blended into your skin. You may need to add more wax as you work.


3. Carve the Wax

Carve a cut into the wax with a plastic knife, being careful to only cut the wax, not your skin.

4. Dab the Wax with Makeup

Apply red cream makeup to a sponge and pat it over the entire piece of wax and the surrounding skin. Repeat this process with yellow cream makeup to give the surrounding area a raw and irritated appearance.



You can use colored eye shadows in place of cream makeup if necessary.

Look for a makeup kit called a "bruise wheel" when you're shopping for cream makeup. These kits usually contain red, purple, black, green and yellow cream makeups to help you create realistic-looking bruises.

You can easily take off your fake bruises and fake wounds with everyday makeup remover.

5. Dust the Cream Makeup

Dip a large makeup brush into baby powder and dust the powder over the cream makeup. This will soften the colors and dry the makeup slightly.

Complete the Look

1. Add fake blood

Pour fake blood directly onto the cut you created in step 3. Don't worry if the blood overflows or spills onto the surrounding skin as a real cut also does this.


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