Avoid Scary Skin this Halloween

Halloween is tomorrow and for those creative types who are also last-minute types, sometimes there’s no need to look further than the makeup bag when it comes to throwing together a costume.

It’s a great opportunity to get creative with that eyeliner and eyeshadow, especially as there’s no such thing as too much makeup on Oct. 31st! We’ve seen some wonderful artistry from the pale and purple hues of Harley Quinn to super cool and detailed sugar skulls. There are so many great tutorials on YouTube if you’re looking for last minute inspiration.

It’s smart not think of your skin as being a blank canvas, though. As with any kind of makeup, it’s important to prep your skin to save it from damage. Use a good primer or rich moisturizer (we’ve used our own body butter for this purpose) before applying makeup. These products serve as a barrier between your skin and any nasty chemicals.

Always check the list of ingredients on the package before applying makeup, especially if you’re buying a kit from a dollar or novelty store. Some of the ingredients in face paint could be toxic (lead, nickel, chromium, and nickel) and stay away from anything with a red pigment as this can cause rashes. Red dye allergy can not only cause minor skin irritation but also angioedema (when deeper layers of the skin swell), gastrointestinal issues, respiratory problems, and even anaphylactic shock. Red dye can also be listed as red, crimson lake, carminic acid, natural red 4, and E120 to name a few.

Why is red dye so bad? Often, it’s made from cochineal extract which is an insect harvested mainly in Peru and the Canary Islands. Until 2009, it was called a “natural colour” but because it causes severe reactions for some people, the FDA requires it to be explicitly identified. Other synthetic dyes – Red No. 2 and Red No. 40 – come from coal or petroleum byproducts. Talk about scary.

Speaking of dyes, those fluorescent hues should be kept away from your eyes. Zinc sulfide is the only one approved for cosmetic use. If you can, spring for the more expensive theatrical makeup as the ingredients tend to be of a much better quality.

Another item on the shelves that often causes grief is latex. Those strips of fake skin/scars, etc., a favourite of zombies, are usually made from latex which many are allergic to.

One thing everybody should avoid are those costume contact lenses. We get how cool/creepy they look but the plastics they are made from may cause irritation and scratch your cornea. Check with your eye doctor before experimenting with costume contacts.

Just as important as putting on your makeup, is taking it off. Read the instructions to ensure you have the right removal products on hand as some formulas won’t come off with your regular facial cleansers.

Happy Halloween from SeaLuxe!