I love kids and kids love me, so any time I get asked to facepaint for a kid’s birthday party I jump at the chance. I have been facepainting pretty much as long as I have been a Makeup Artist-that would be 13 years and counting! Over 10 years ago I even used my facepainting skills to fundraise money to travel to Costa Rica for a 3 month volunteer project with Youth Challenge International. (That’s me below with the purple hair)!
This past Canada Day weekend I was hired to facepaint at a 2 year olds birthday party. Here is my recipe and key ingredients to successfully be a superhero Facepainter for little kids:
1. Paper towel-Maybe it’s just me but I always seem to make a mess when facepainting! So paper towel comes in handy for any quick clean ups. I also like to put a few sheets of paper towel down before I set up my station so in case there are any spills they just get absorbed by the paper instead of ruining the table underneath.
2. Cotton Swabs-A makeup artist’s best friend. These are great for cleaning up any mistakes, softening any lines and they are great for making small circles such as dots on a lady bug!
3. A handheld mirror-Very important! There is nothing that tops the look on the kid’s face when they see the beautiful butterfly or tiger that you just painted on their face. I also find a mirror can help to focus a squirmy kid. You can get them to hold the mirror so they can watch exactly what you are doing and this helps them to concentrate.
4. A good assortment of glitter-who doesn’t love glitter? Throwing a little glitter on a facepaint design can be a great finishing touch to make it pop. The facepaint that I use is emollient based and has a little tackiness to it so I find I can just press a little glitter into the paint with my pinky finger and the glitter sticks.
5. Wipes-Cloth wipes that are saturated with makeup remover are always great to have. I use them to clean my hands in between each face, they can remove any mistakes and they are even great at removing some of the product from your brushes. Kids can sometimes have food or crusty boogers on their face and wipes come in handy to give them a wipe down before you apply any makeup. I pick up my wipes from Dollarama in the cosmetic section. They work great and when you go through as many wipes as I do the price point is perfect!
6. Pencil Sharpener-it’s important to sharpen any eyeliners you use for each new person to make sure they are clean. I will also use some of the paper towel to soften the tip of the pencil to make sure its gentle on the face.
7. A palette-great for using as a place to mix products/colours.
8. Facepaints! I use Paint Sticks from MAC Cosmetics. They are super easy to use and can be removed with any soap and water combo which parents are always grateful for. I carry every colour available but you could cut some corners by just getting the 3 primary colours, red, blue & yellow and black and white. Just keep in mind it will take more time to mix colours together and little kids can get impatient while waiting to get painted.
9. An assortment of brushes-I find brushes with synthetic bristles work best with any emollient based products. I use some of my older, slightly worn out brushes for facepainting. You could also go to a local art store like Curry’s and purchase synthetic brushes at a much cheaper price and use them as well (just make sure they won’t be rough on the face).
10. Alcohol-great for keeping everything sanitized and clean. I always use alcohol to wipe down any surfaces/products.
11. Pencil Eyeliners-I like to always have at least 1 black and 1 white eye pencil to use for outlines, details and highlights. Try to avoid any liners that are water resistant or waterproof-again you want the parents to be able to easily remove your creations at the end of the day.
And there you have it, follow my ‘recipe’ above and the outcome will be happy little clients that will have the best time ever!