Homemade Face Paint

face paint

Whether you're a teacher seeking fun activities for your students or a parent who wants to take a more hands-on approach to Halloween costumes, learning how to make homemade face paint can be a helpful and fun project. Creating face paint in the comfort of your own home is surprisingly simple. You don't need any fancy kits or unusual supplies. Chances are, you have everything you need in your kitchen cupboard.

Three Face Paint Recipes

All of these recipes can be removed using soap and water or any gentle makeup remover.

1. Basic Recipe

This recipe produces a creamy face paint that is easy to apply. Make as many colors as you need to complete your look.


  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon water
  • 1/2 teaspoon cold cream (any brand)
  • Food coloring (various colors)
  • Several small containers (baby food jars, film canisters or anything similar)
  • Paintbrush


  1. Mix the cold cream and cornstarch together until the blend is smooth.
  2. Mix the water into the cornstarch blend. Stir thoroughly.
  3. Add a drop of food color, one drop at a time, to the blend until your desired color is achieved.
  4. Pour and store in individual containers.

2. Smooth Face Paint Recipe

Similar to the basic recipe, this mix requires a slightly different blend of ingredients. The texture may end up slightly smoother than the first recipe. If you prefer not to use corn syrup, though, you'll want to stick with the basic recipe.


  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 3/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon liquid food coloring


  1. Mix the cornstarch and flour together until blended well.
  2. Gradually begin to stir in the Karo light corn syrup and water. Keep blending until smooth.
  3. After you have poured the mixture into individual containers, add the food color of your choice to the blend.

3. Clown Face Makeup Recipe

Whether you're just "clowning" around or have a party to dress up for, you need the right makeup to be a believable clown.


  • 2 tablespoons shortening
  • 5 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoons flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon Vaseline
  • Food coloring (various colors)


  1. Blend the shortening, cornstarch, flour and Vaseline on a plate. Stir thoroughly.
  2. Add the color one drop at a time, mixing well until you get the color you desire.


  • Though most of the ingredients in these are skin-safe and don't normally pose a problem, it is always wise to ensure that your children (or anyone who is going to wear the paint) are not allergic to anything in the recipe.
  • If you use large quantities of food coloring, some of the darker colors like red or blue may leave a faint stain on the skin that will wash away in day or two.

Other Tips for Creating Great Colors

  • Some mixtures can be sticky, such as those that contain corn syrup. Note that clothing can become stained, so it is helpful to either wear a smock or drape a towel over the shoulders when mixing or applying makeup..
  • Eye shadows, blushes and highlighters also make great additions to any face paint mixture. Don't worry about buying anything fancy for this; just grab a few cheap pots at the dollar store (or pick up a few Wet 'n' Wild items, a brand that is known for its very low prices). These items can be crushed and stirred into your mixtures.
  • Tempura paint can be used in place of food coloring if you are concerned about darker colors staining the skin.
  • Use art store brushes or cotton swabs to apply the makeup. Invest in brushes of various sizes to create a number of looks.

Start Painting

With a homemade face paint recipe at your disposal, any day can be dress up day. Whether you want to become a fairy, a witch or anything you can imagine, these fun and inexpensive recipes will help get you there.

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Homemade Face Paint