Make up is a massive massive part for any and all cosplayers nowadays. Now, before I go on, I know you’re thinking “But Lauren! Articles like this have been done to death, haven’t they?!” and yes, I’m going to agree with you there because everyone and their grandmother have written about make up for cosplay, but not everyone uses the same products, not everyone utilises their make up in the same way and in the same way that it’s great to get different advice from a whole plethora of cosplayers on how they make their props or their cosplays themselves, it’s also a great idea to hear from other cosplayers about their make up, what they use, how they use it. So yes, in this article I’m going to give you guys my two cents on what make up I use for cosplay, how I get it to stay on for long periods of time, how to wash your brushes, what little special effects stuff I have in my make up bag and how you can use every day make up stuff in your cosplays! I will also be giving a little shout out to my most favourite YouTube make up person in the entire world at the end of this, so make sure to check her out!
Okay, so your basics are gonna be your foundations and your concealers, and of course; your primer! Now if you wanna know about primers then please check out Tendai’s previous make up piece on primers because that is exactly what you need when you’re getting that face prepped for your make up! While I’m on that train of thought; make sure your face is completely free of dirt and old make up, use a good cleanser, one that works for your skin type. I use a cleansing milk because it hydrates and removes every bit of make up, even eye make up. But even though the cleansing milk gives my skin hydration, I also use a moisturizer for very dry skin, especially during the winter months as there are factors like indoor heating which can dry out your skin terribly and you do not want your skin looking dry while trying to do cosplay makeup!
When it comes to foundation, make sure you get the right match for your skin tone. You can find fantastic foundations at a great price in many pharmacies like Boots or others, and these will only set you back by around €9.99 to €12.99 depending on the brand, but this just goes to show that you do not need to spend extortionate amounts on your cosplay make up. For me, my favourite foundation has to be Urban Decay’s Naked Skin which comes in 18 different shades and will set you back by around €34.00 but I guarantee that you will have this foundation for a few months at least and it is the best one to give you a smooth, even coverage in my opinion. My suggestion for a concealer? Once again, Urban Decay’s Naked Skin Concealer for €22.00 which is perfect for hiding any blemishes you may have, or even those dark circles which have formed thanks to many nights sat up trying to work on a cosplay.
BRUSHES, EYESHADOWS & LINERS
Brushes are something that I truly believe you need to spend a little bit of money on. After all, you’re gonna be using them on an almost day to day basis, unless this is just for your cosplay and not every day make up. You’ll need to get yourself a good foundation brush, an eyebrow brush/pencil, lip brush, blending brush, eyeliner brush, eyeshadow brush… and about fifty others if you’re like me and you want one for everything, but those ones will do the trick! The ones I use myself are from MadeULook by Lex and you get a ten brush set for around $60.00 and I use these for both every day and for cosplay, and yes I have used them with face paints and they work beautifully!
Washing your brushes is SO DAMN IMPORTANT!!! I can’t stress that enough. Your brushes can build up so much on them, you need to make sure you’re not putting dirt back onto your skin every time you use them. I’m including a video just so you guys can see how you should be cleaning and disinfecting your brushes and how to do it all properly.
Eyeshadows are not just for your eyes! Now, that may sound odd and weird, but I promise you, eyeshadows can be used for so much when it comes to cosplay. Shading, highlighting and creating a whole entirely new character can be done with just eyeshadows.
For day to day use, I use my Urban Decay palettes, but when it comes to cosplay, I got myself two palettes from Amazon for €20.00 each with 200+ colours in both. They may be small, but they work fantastically when you’re doing cosplay stuff. You can get great palettes in Penney’s or H&M nowadays and they’ll only set you back by about €10.00, if even that! Eyeshadows can also be fantastic when shaping your eyebrows themselves, you can use an angled brush to clean up those unruly brows or to draw on new ones once you cover your own up!
Your eyeliner can be either pencil, liquid, or even your own eyeshadow with a teeny bit of water applied to a brush. It all depends on your look and what you need! Pencil can be smudged easily, as can your eyeshadow, it can be light and can be used for a natural look or even to change your eye shape a little. A liquid eyeliner, like the one I use (MadeULook By Lex, Night Owl Eyeliner $18.00) can be quite dark, but once again, it can be used perfectly for certain characters. I myself use a dark black liquid eyeliner for many different characters such as Tinkerbell, Elsa and others.
Keeping That Makeup On
Use a primer when you’re putting on your eyeshadow, it’ll make the eyeshadow seem brighter and it’ll keep it on during the day when you’re at a convention! I would suggest the Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion for €11.00 because honestly, if you ask anyone… well, they’re gonna suggest the Potion, I can almost promise you that.
As for the rest of that make up on your face? Worried that you’re gonna end up melting by the end of a convention day? Fear not! Get yourself the Urban Decay All Nighter Long Lasting Setting Spray for €29.00! I actually use this when I know I’m going to be wearing make up for a very long time, and it has not failed me yet, not once. It’ll keep your foundation on, and maybe even your face paint (I haven’t tried this with paint yet, but if you have then please let me know in the comments!).
When it comes to learning about make up and how to create different looks and characters, I have to give a massive shout out to Lex from MadeYewLook on YouTube because this woman is unbelievably talented and does so many varied looks, you’ll be shocked when you check out her channel!
Let me know what make up you use for your cosplays and what you’ve achieved with it in the comments!