Costume 1: Zombie

(Or: “Braaaaaaaaaaiiiiiiinnnssssssssss”)

Every year, I spend ages trying to choose between a few ideas for Halloween costumes and wishing that I had more than one or two opportunities to dress up. This year, I decided to take full advantage of having this blog, and I’m going to do 12 different costume tutorials from now until Halloween.

I decided to start with a classic: a zombie.


Here’s what you’ll need:

  • matte foundation 2-3 shades lighter than your skin tone
  • a damp Beauty Blender (or other makeup sponge)
  • green eyeshadow
  • warm, reddish-purple eyeshadow
  • dark purple eyeshadow
  • at least three eyeshadow brushes (one of which is kept clean for blending)
  • translucent powder
  • fake blood
  • a waterproof makeup remover (I won’t list this for every costume, but it’s especially important for removing the fake blood)

For extra credit, you can add in any of the items below:

  • primer
  • hair gel
  • any clothing or accessories to further customize your costume

Before I started in on the makeup, I hopped in the shower to wet my hair, and then I left it in a towel to dry a bit while I did the makeup. I wanted it to look dirty and disheveled. If I were wearing the costume for the whole day, I would run some gel through it before leaving the house to hold in that “I just woke up in a grave like this” style.

I started off the makeup by covering my face in multiple thin layers of the foundation using my Beauty Blender. I find that using a matte foundation, just 2-3 shades paler than your skintone helps you achieve that naturally undead look better than the white cream foundation that you can pick up at a costume shop or the dollar store.

Next, I generously applied the translucent powder, both to lock in the foundation and because it cakes up and flakes off under the fake blood, which makes it look like your skin is falling off (not normally the look I’d want, but perfect for this costume). The powder also helped with blending out the shadows that I put under and around my eyes. I purposely applied the shadow messily and then blended it out to achieve that coveted, natural-looking “I haven’t slept in 20 years, and also I’m undead” look. I also blended the shadow around my nose and in a bruise-like shape on my forehead to further the look of decay.

I then smeared the fake blood all around my mouth (accidentally ingesting some, which I wouldn’t recommend because it tastes terrible) and down my neck and chest. If I were wearing the costume out, I’d also dribble or smear some on my clothes to further the appearance that I’d just been feasting on fresh brains.

When I was done the makeup, I took my hair out of the towel and used my fingers to rake it into an optimally messy style, leaving some strands hanging in front of my face.

My favourite part of zombie costumes is that you can combine them with other things to make Zombie-Whatevers. For example, you could add a long black wig, eyelashes, and sequined outfit to be Zombie Cher:


Or you can combine it with the pieces of a previous Halloween costume like I did to create Zombie Wintour (with or without sunnies):


The possibilities are endless!

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