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Face Paint Tutorials: Old Lady Makeup

Updated on March 12, 2013

The Finished Look

This look can easily be achieved on both men and women. My boyfriend originally bought a "bald cap" wig, that ended up looking terrible. The second time we did this look, he lightly sprayed his hair with white hair color spray, which look way better.
This look can easily be achieved on both men and women. My boyfriend originally bought a "bald cap" wig, that ended up looking terrible. The second time we did this look, he lightly sprayed his hair with white hair color spray, which look way better.

Every Halloween I try to take a step further in costume designs. Instead of spending way too much on a pre-made costume at a store, I like to be more creative. In 2010 I used cheap drugstore makeup and a salvation army outfit to create an old lady look. Going as an old person is always a hit, and this costume was definitely a head-turner. The best part? It was all for around $20.

Follow these easy steps below to see how you will look in 50+ years!

What You Will Need:

Here is a list of materials you will need in order to senior-ify yourself!

**If you already own makeup, feel free to use your own if you have it. If you don't own any of these items, think cheap, it doesn't need to be expensive. I bought most of mine at a dollar store**

  • foundation (liquid and/or powder) in your skin tone, or more pale
  • eyeliner, in brown or black (I prefer a type such as Cover Girl perfect point plus. It glides on very smooth, and you never have to sharpen it!)

**Don't use liquid or gel eyeliner, it's far too dark and doesn't cover easily**

  • blush (optional)
  • a small palette of eyeshadow in shades of brown (these will be used for shading, so make sure there is a good variation of dark and light hues.
  • colored hair spray, in gray or white (or buy a wig)

You will also need some tools to apply your makeup. Most makeup comes with small brushes, which will do fine if need be. The best case scenario is to have a good blending eyeshadow brush, to create more realistic shading. These can be found at any drugstore and come in all different sizes and prices.

Now for the fun part: Accessories!

Go to your local thrift store and pick out your duds! This was by far my favorite part of this costume (besides wearing it of course). Here is a list of some clothes that would easily be recognized as "old folk" threads:

  • sweater vests
  • cardigans
  • jeans with an elastic waistband
  • simple white shoes
  • button up tee shirts
  • sweaters with cats, holiday themes, or flowers on them
  • brooches
  • anything with a cat on it
  • glasses
  • aprons
  • argyle
  • loafers
  • suspenders
  • big plastic earrings
  • bingo visor

This list could really go on forever. An alternative for an old person look is to go for the "overly-tanned-and-goes-out-dancing old lady" look. I might have to do that look sometime...this would involve some heavy bronzer, more wrinkles, and neon clothing.

Apply Your Wrinkles

This looks complicated in the end, but it actually is extremely easy. I will break it down into easy-to-follow steps:

  1. Start with a clean, dry face. Apply liberal amounts of foundation, and blend it smoothly with your face to appear seamless. Old people don't have zits, so it'd probably be a good idea to cover up any!
  2. Look in the mirror and study your face. Smile, frown, squint. Making facial expressions shows you where you will probably end up getting wrinkles. With your eyeliner pencil, lightly trace the lines of your face's natural creases. Don't go too dark , this eyeliner is only supposed to act as a guide for the next step.
  3. Using the lightest shade of your eyeshadow, begin to slowly start shading. The darkest line will be right over top of your eyeliner guide. Try to blend as smoothly as possible. When you are satisfied with this layer of shadow, go one shade deeper and apply the next layer of eyeshadow, working closer to the eyeliner guide. Every few minutes, take a couple steps back and look at your entire face. You'll be able to see your shading more clearly from a distance.
  4. Your darkest shade of brown will actually cover up your eyeliner entirely. Step back and look at the final result, and touch up anything that doesn't look the way you want it to.
  5. Finish with a touch of very pink blush if desired, and maybe some lipstick if you're feelin' crazy!

How do you look? Practice makes perfect, but the overall result is definitely worth it.

Top it off

Dress fully in your old person ensemble, and top the look off with a wig. If you'd rather use colored hairspray paint, lightly dust your hair using gray or white.

**when using colored hairspray, go outside. I made the mistake of putting black hairspray on in my bathroom, and ended up with a big mess to clean up the next day.

Grab your old lady purse or your orthopedic shoes and you're ready to go!

Completed Look For Men

A light dusting of white hair color spray worked much better than a store bought old man wig.
A light dusting of white hair color spray worked much better than a store bought old man wig.


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    • wymyczak66 profile imageAUTHOR

      Jessie Miller 

      7 years ago from Buffalo, NY

      Thank you! Can you believe I was carded at the bar that night? Nonsense. I'm considering doing an alien look this year...not sure but we'll see how that goes haha

    • mattie-does-a-lot profile image


      7 years ago from philippines

      this is fun!

    • Dana Hinders profile image

      Dana Hinders 

      7 years ago

      You are very talented! That's a great idea for Halloween.


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