How can I make my own children’s make-up?

How can I make my own children’s make-up?

Sheriff, cowboy, monster – kids love taking on different roles, trying things out and seeing what it’s like to be someone else. There are no limits to fancy dress ideas for Mardi Gras, but Halloween is all about scary costumes such as witches or goblins. Whether they decide to dress up as a strawberry or an evil ghost, every costume is an opportunity for kids to learn something new. And a made-up face is part of most fancy dress costumes.

Children with skin allergies (contact allergies or atopic dermatitis) cannot use just any make-up from the shops because they often contain ingredients that may cause problems for allergy-prone skin. But not to worry, there are tips and tricks for making your own kids’ make-up or masks, if the child has acute inflammation.

Make your own children’s make-up

This children’s make-up recipe is based on a simple principle: A skin care cream that you know the child tolerates well is used as the base. You can whip up a whole make-up palette with some food colouring.

You will need:

  • Well-tolerated skin cream
  • Liquid food colouring
  • Microwave oven
  • Microwave-safe container

Combine the cream with a few squirts of food colouring. Put the container into the microwave oven and heat for five to ten seconds. Then mix thoroughly until you get an evenly coloured paste. You can use more or less food colouring depending on the result you want, or mix different colours together. If the child has acute inflammation or a known intolerance to food colouring, do not use this recipe. In this case, you can make a mask. There are two options for this.

Construction paper mask

Choose a construction paper in a colour that goes with the fancy dress costume.

You will need:

  • Coloured construction paper
  • Pencil and eraser
  • Scissors
  • Wooden stick or rubber band
  • Tape/glue

Draw a template on the construction paper (for instance an eye mask, a ghost or a phantom) and cut out the mask. Cutting out inner circles will require some skill. Tape or glue the paper mask onto a wooden stick. Or carefully cut two small holes into the sides and thread a rubber band through the holes. If you like, you can first paint the mask or decorate it with stars, spiders or other accents.

Papier-mâché mask

Papier-mâché masks – for ghosts or skeletons – require a bit more work.

You will need:

  • Balloon
  • Newspaper
  • Kitchen roll
  • Wallpaper paste
  • Paint
  • Wire whisk
  • Bowl
  • Disposable soup dish
  • Rubber band
  • Scissors

Blow up the balloon until it is approximately the same size as your child’s head. Cover your work surface with newspaper. Place the balloon on the disposable soup dish and make sure it is stable. Paint the outlines of the mask on the balloon. Don’t forget to draw holes for the nose, eyes and mouth. If you are familiar with this technique, you can go ahead and paste the whole balloon or half of it and add the holes for the eyes and nose afterwards. Take care not to break anything.

In a bowl, combine the wallpaper paste with water at a 1:5 ratio (it shouldn’t be too runny). Mix it with the whisk until there are no more lumps. Make sure you are using a neutral, starch/cellulose-based paste. Extra-strong paste is not suitable as it may contain allergens such as epoxy resin. Tear (do not cut) the kitchen roll into small pieces, soak them in the paste and stick them onto the balloon. Keep doing this until the mask is several layers thick. The pieces should always overlap by half. Allow the mask to dry completely and separate it from the balloon (pop the balloon if necessary). This takes around two to three days. You can use the scissors to poke small holes in the sides for the rubber band. The mask is now ready to be painted.