The best Halloween makeup looks for 2023

The best Halloween makeup looks for 2023

October is the time when we welcome the gentle crisp air, the golden and crimson hues of autumnal leaves and the crackling of warming fires and scented candles. However, it's also the one month of the year when we can collectively embrace the spooky, the creepy, and the macabre. That's right, Halloween graces us in October with an abundance of tricks and treats from scary movies to lively costume parties.

For some, this is the favourite holiday of the year, and for others it's just an excuse to get dressed up in costume, and if you're looking for some Halloween makeup ideas, you've come to the right place. No matter if you're looking for something simple and achievable at the last minute or something complex and show-stopping, we've compiled a selection of makeup looks complete with step-by-step tutorials and product recommendations to suit a range of abilities and preferences.

Easy Halloween Makeup Ideas

If you're celebrating the spooky season but don't have the SFX skills or products of a Hollywood makeup artist, don't worry! There are plenty of effective, easy Halloween makeup ideas to suit all levels. With just a few simple products such as eyeliner, lipstick, and fake blood, you can create a perfect Halloween look. We've curated two looks below that you can create with just these three products - perfect for beginners!

Jester Halloween makeup

This cheeky jester look is a great option for both day and night parties and is even better for those in need of a last-minute idea. With the right products, this jester Halloween makeup will last for hours! To complete this look, you'll need black eyeliner, black lipstick, and red lipstick or face paint. The stars and lashes are optional - feel free to customise the appearance as you like.

Step 1: If you're applying foundation and contour, make sure to do this before applying the eyeliner to your face. It's also best to do your eyebrows at this stage so that you know where to place the eyeliner.

Step 2: Take a precision liner (we recommend using the L'oreal Paradise Mascara & Ultra Precision Liner Set as you'll probably want to apply mascara later on) and create a tall triangle shape above the eyebrow (think Eiffel tower shape!). Once you've done this, mirror this triangle underneath the waterline to create a disjointed diamond shape. Make sure to keep your face still whilst you do this to ensure you get it even on both sides, although a jaunty angle may add to the look!

L'Oréal Paradise Extatic Mascara & Ultra Precision Eyeliner Set (£10.99 RRP £19.99 Saving £9.00)

Step 3: Once you've created triangles on both sides of each eye, fill them in with the eyeliner so they're solid black and let them dry. If you wish to add star stickers like in the image, you can do so at this stage - alternatively, you can draw them on with eyeliner and experiment with different colours.

Step 4: This is optional but we recommend placing eyeliner or black eyeshadow at your waterline and creating a small wing on your eyelid to create more of a seamless look. Make sure to use pencil eyeliner if you're applying directly to the waterline.

Step 5: Apply black or red lipstick, and take it out into the corners of your lips to create an elongated smile. If you're using black, you can use precision eyeliner to create this effect.

Step 6: Use red face paint or red lipstick and apply a circle shape at the end of your nose to give a clown nose effect. We would recommend using the MAC Powder Kiss Matte Lipstick in 315, as this is a nice bright red that is long lasting.

MAC Powder Kiss Matte Bright Red Lipstick 315 Lasting Passion £17.00 (RRP £20.00 saving £3.00)

That's it! A nice and simple look for Halloween, you can also customise it further by adding lashes, drawing on scars or cobwebs, or even adding glitter. This look also works very well if you need inspiration for Halloween cheerleader makeup that goes beyond a bit of fake blood at the corners of the mouth.

Women's Easy Halloween Makeup

Step 1: For this makeup look you'll want to first apply any primer and base makeup such as foundation, concealer, and contour. You can do this however you like, as the focus is going to be on your eye makeup.

Step 2: Take a black eyeshadow and apply it to your eyelids, including the crease. We recommend using the Dior 5 Couleurs Designer Eyeshadow in 808, as the other colours in this palette will help the makeup pop.

Step 3: Taking a clean rounded brush, blend the black shadow outwards from the eyelids to above the crease to create a gradual smoky effect. You can also blend with the grey shadow from the palette to create more of a gradient transition.

Step 4: Now apply the black eyeshadow underneath your waterline using a small eye makeup brush or flat brush. Don't worry if you blend it too far down and look and look as though you're creating eye bags as we're going to cover most of this with fake blood. Make sure to join the bottom and the top of your eyes by tapering the black upwards.

Step 5: Apply pencil eyeliner to your waterline and add your mascara or fake eyelashes, you can also add graphic eyeliner at this stage if you wish. Once this is done, take the white colour from the palette and apply it to the inner corners of your eyes to create definition.

Step 6: If you have fake blood that is safe for use on your face, apply a few droplets underneath your eyes and let it drip down a little bit. Make sure not to put it in your eyes or on the waterline! Alternatively, you can draw on the fake blood using a red eyeliner or a lipstick and flat brush but this may not give the same effect.

Step 7: Apply dark lipstick. For this look, we would recommend opting for a deep rouge or a plum colour. Our choice would be the Urban Decay Vice Lipstick in the shade After Dark.

Urban Decay Vice Matte Plum Lipstick After Dark (£16.50 RRP £18.00 Saving £1.50)

And that's a wrap for this easy Halloween makeup look. You can then finish it off by doing your eyebrows however you like or by adding any customised touches. Then don your witch hat and broom and get ready to party.

Men's Easy Halloween Makeup

If you're going to a Halloween party as a couple and want matching costumes, or if you're in need of an easy Halloween idea for men that uses minimal makeup products, this simple look can be adapted using the same products as listed above.

Step 1: Apply white face paint or a very light shade of foundation to your face to create a vampiric look.

Step 2: Take the black eyeshadow from the Dior palette and smudge it onto your eyelids and just below your waterline. You can use your finger or a brush as it doesn't need to be neat.

Step 3: Using non-toxic fake blood, apply a small amount to the inner centre of your lips and create a few dots above and below your lips. (Make sure the fake blood is safe to use in this way before continuing with this step).

Step 4: Take a black liquid or pencil eyeliner and join the dots to create a '_x0098_stitch' pattern as if your mouth had been sewn shut.

Step 5: Add any extras such as fake blood around the eyes, fake scars, or you can use the eyeliner to draw cobwebs.

Day of the Dead Makeup

For more advanced levels of makeup artistry, Day of the Dead makeup is great fun as there are limitless options and colours you can choose from. We've decided to keep ours simple as we love an easy-to-follow tutorial.

Step 1: As always, apply your base makeup at this step with your chosen foundations and concealers. We'd also recommend that you do your contour and eyebrows here as the Day of the Dead makeup will act like a mask, sitting atop your usual look.

Step 2: If you're following a set colour scheme like ours, make sure you have a lipliner, eyeshadow or face paint, and lipstick that matches your chosen colour scheme. Take your lipliner (we recommend MAC Red Lip Liner Pencil in Ruby Woo) and draw a scalloped edge around the entirety of each eye, covering above the eyebrow to just above the cheekbone. If you struggle with creating two even shapes - try drawing two circles first before adding the scalloped edge.

MAC Red Lip Liner Pencil Ruby Woo (£17.50 RRP £18.50 Saving £1.00)

Step 3: Fill in this circle using a pigmented medium of your choice. We like to use a liquid eyeshadow as it gives more coverage than a powder form. The YSL Full Matte Eyeshadow in Cheeky Pink is our preferred choice to fill in the shape.

YSL Full Matte Shadow 1 Cheeky Pink Eyeshadow £18.99 RRP £27.00 Saving £8.01)

Step 4: Using the same products as above, draw a similar scallop-shaped half circle on your chin and fill it in. You can also add any other additional shapes you wish at this stage, avoiding the tip of the nose.

Step 5: The next thing to do is your eye makeup - this is completely customisable and down to personal preference. We like to add a dark shimmery red shade topped with some false eyelashes and striking black liner to create a balanced look.

Step 6: Take a precision black liquid eyeliner and draw a teardrop shape on the tip of your nose, cover the whole tip of the nose to give the effect of a skull and fill in the shape.

Step 7: Draw lines from the corners of your mouth up towards your ears, adding in vertical '_x0098_scar' lines or stitches that mimic the jaw.

Step 8: Add your lipstick. Remember to keep it in line with your colour scheme, and we'd suggest using matte lipstick rather than a glossy finish to make the look more cohesive.

Once you've completed all these steps, it's up to you how you want to finish your look. Flower headbands and a long dark dress are always a popular choice in Mexico.

Zombie Makeup

The thing about zombie makeup is that it can be quite hard to achieve a realistic look without SFX makeup skills. The above makeup look is more of a zombie/skull crossover that can be achieved with just regular makeup. However, if you want to intensify the zombie aspect you can add some fake blood or scars and even add a green tinge to the white base. This one will require some more advanced level makeup artistry skills.

Step 1: Again, it's time for your base makeup. However, with this look, it may not be necessary to use foundation if you are opting to use white face paint instead. If you do choose to use foundation you will need to place a white layer on top by using either a lighter shade or a very white pigmented eyeshadow or highlighter. If you want to go for a more zombie-like look, mix some green eyeshadow or face paint into your white base, or dab it on with a beauty blender afterwards.

Step 2: Add dramatic contour to your cheekbones. Try using the YSL Couture Eyeshadow Palette in Rosy Contour as you can build upon the different colours in the set, the powder will also be easier to blend without ruining your base.

YSL Couture Eyeshadow Palette 14 Rosy Contouring £39.99 RRP £46.00 (Saving £6.01)

Step 3: We're going to tackle the eyes next. Despite the complex look, the eyes are actually very easy. You just need some black eyeshadow which you'll blend in a dramatic exaggerated tapered shape from the inner corners of your eyes to just beyond the outer corners. You can use a piece of paper to get a sharp taper, but this will need to be blended out a little bit with a clean, soft brush. Take the black shadow past your crease and up towards your eyebrows, covering most of where your eye socket is. If you have a grey eyeshadow, you can blend this into the edges of the black for a gradient effect.

Step 4: Take black eyeliner and add lines to your face, following the reference of the picture, but do not yet add the lines covering the lips. Make sure to adjust these lines to conform to your face shape. You can add more definition to these lines by using a flat angled brush and the lighter colours of your contour palette.

Step 5: Colour your eyebrows and the tip of your nose in black using eyeshadow or eyeliner.

Step 6: To add some contrast, use red lipstick to colour your lips. You can opt for a sultry deep red or plum colour, or a vibrant bright red such as the Urban Decay Vice Vegan Red Lipstick.

Urban Decay Vice High Impact Vegan Red Lipstick 714 Matte £15.99 RRP £19.00 (Saving £3.01)

Step 7: Once this is applied, you can finish the look by adding the rest of the stitch lines that cover your cheeks and lips.

In order to really get the full effect of this look, we'd recommend adding orange contact lenses as they provide a stark contrast against the white and black. You can also add fake blood or scars to lean more into the zombie look.

Women's Clown Halloween Makeup

One of the most popular Halloween costumes, especially after the resurgence of the IT movies in 2017 and 2018, you can never go wrong with clown makeup. You can choose to be a cute clown or a creepy clown, it's really down to personal preference. We've opted for a look that's in between, not too scary and not too cute either. It's also fairly easy to recreate this look, so no SFX makeup skills required here - though you will need some white facepaint.

Step 1: It's time to create the white base! Plaster your whole face in white facepaint - just make sure not to get any in your eyes.

Step 2: Take a blue eyeshadow and apply it in a circle around your eyes, filling in this shape. If you want a vibrant look, use the blue shade from the Dior 5 Couleurs Palette in 357 Electrify. Remember, it doesn't matter if this looks silly at first as it is quite literally clown makeup.

Dior Blue Green 5 Couleurs Eyeshadow Palette 357 Electrify £39.99 RRP £48.50 (Saving £8.51)

Step 3: Now that the blue is applied, go ahead and add in any extra details such as eyeliner or mascara if you wish to use them. This is also the time to fill in your eyebrows if you wish to.

Step 4: At this step, it's time to colour your lips. You can choose any colour, but we'd recommend avoiding bright red as this is the colour we'll be using to create your clown nose. Instead, try a dark red or black shade for a spooky makeup look - the Lancome L'Absolu Rouge Purple Lipstick 499 Black Dragon is an excellent choice for this look.

Lancome L'Absolu Rouge Purple Lipstick 499 Black Dragon £17.50 (RRP £27.00 Save £9.50)

Step 5: Take a red eyeliner, facepaint, or even a lipstick and create two thin lines that run from your forehead and join at the corners of your mouth. Then create another line that runs from your cupid's bow up to the centre of your nose, and down to your chin.

Step 6: Create two large, bright red circles on your cheeks, and colour the tip of your nose in the same red. If you're going to be wearing an actual red clown nose, you can skip colouring in your real nose.

Now your creepy clown look should be completed, but as with any of our suggestions feel free to customise it to create something unique and show-stopping for the spooky season.

Men's Clown Halloween Makeup

Step 1: Follow the first two steps as listed on the women's clown halloween makeup look above, and skip the third step.

Step 2: Colour your lips using bright red lipstick. It doesn't matter if you go over your lips as we're going to create more of a 'joker' style look.

Step 3: Using the red lipstick, create lines from the corners of your mouth and up onto your cheeks, try to taper the lines as you approach your ears and stop midway between your cheeks and your ears.

Step 4: Create circles as seen in the picture, just outside of the corners of your mouth.

Step 5: Colour in your nose with the red lipstick, or use a real red clown nose if you prefer.

Step 6: Add any extra details if you wish to create a more dramatic look, such as black dots under the eyes, scars or stitches.

Create something spooktacular with Hogies

If you're hoping to win a best costume award, you're going to need the help of makeup to create a stand-out look. Using your creativity and our looks as inspiration, you'll be able to come up with the perfect Halloween costume.

Even better, when choosing to use makeup rather than facepaint or SFX, you can continue to utilise the products to make stunning everyday looks, or show-stopping looks for other holidays. Alternatively, if you're just in need of some additional palettes or products to complete your costume makeup, you can browse our full cosmetics range. Alternatively, for even bigger discounts visit our clearance cosmetics section which is full of designer makeup at affordable prices.