Color Cosmetics for Halloween

Happy Halloween! 

In the spirit of this spooky holiday, I thought I’d share some of the rules & regulations behind the ever popular Halloween face paint makeup. You know the makeup I’m talking about – the colorful cream palette that can be bought at any store for face painting. For this post, I talked with my aunt who is a face painter and was able to give me some perspective from the industry side. 

Color Cosmetics for Halloween 2 - Cosmetic Composition

a sketch of my aunt’s work 

FDA compliance is necessary for insurability for my business.” My fellow beauty science nerds will know that the FDA heavily regulates color additives in cosmetics. On the FDA’s website, they created an easy chart for understanding which colors can and cannot be added, and where on the face they can be used. (Find it here!) Scrolling through the list you may notice a lot of familiar colors, most likely because these are also used in foods and other consumer products. So keep in mind that just because they’re listed as restricted for cosmetics does not mean that these colors are unsafe for other products. The top section of colors are ones that do not need FDA approval before being added to a product (as long as they follow specifications) since they have already been pre-approved. The bottom section is colors that may be added to color cosmetics only if they become approved by the FDA for a particular product. 

FDA approved colors for cosmetics - Cosmetic Composition

a few of the approved color additives for cosmetics in the United States

No craft glitter and NO acrylic paint. We don’t use ‘finger paint’ paint“. My aunt pointed out something very important for all the face painted Halloween goers. Using non-cosmetic paint products on your face has the potential to be extremely harsh on your skin and increases the possibility of an allergic reaction. Non-toxic warnings on paints are in regards to the consumption of the product – not the ability to wear it on your skin. Craft glitter should never be applied to the skin, instead look for cosmetic glitter – which many brands, like NYX, have started producing. Brands like NYX, Essence, NYC, Wet N’ Wild and E.L.F. are great budget-worthy options for putting together your Halloween makeup. Wet N’ Wild even came out with a Halloween specific makeup line this fall. 

Like good makeup, we wait for sales!” For those who watched Skin Wars on Netflix and are now looking to start doing face painting as their side hustle should consider the quality of the face paint makeup, they invest in. Since you want to produce quality work and not get sued, using properly regulated and effective face paint makeup is extremely important. My aunt never takes a job for free, she relies on getting paid and tips to be able to spend money on quality products from reputable brands. 

So this may have not been the spookiest post but I hope it helped you understand the importance of using proper face paint makeup this Halloween! 

You can follow my Aunt and her super creative design at K Sparkles on Facebook and if you’re in the Oklahoma City area hit her up for your next creative event! 


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