Looking Dirty in Hollywood


Simply not bathing or combing your hair for an entire week isn’t the most efficient way to get the dirty look- especially not in Hollywood. Yet this look must be accomplished somehow and, contrary to popular belief, the best way to look like you haven’t showered in a month is to paste on copious amounts of makeup and hair product!

This “dirty” look can be seen in popular television shows, notably The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones. In each of these shows, the characterization would not be nearly as believable or interesting if it were not for the fantastic makeup.

 The Walking Dead:

Sure, there are pretty cool videos and makeup tutorials to replicate the zombies on The Walking Dead- but the living characters love the makeup just as much!

“I get very upset if anyone’s dirtier or bloodier than I am,” says Norman Reedus, who plays fan favorite, Daryl, on the show. “I occasionally try to steal the dirt from [our makeup girl], and take it back to my trailer, and roll around in it.”



Game of Thrones:

Not only is “dirty makeup” a must, actors need to have dirt under their nails and in their hair, too!


Maisie Williams, who plays the ever-muddy Arya Stark in GoT, explains in a Vine video that forgetting to remove her dirt makeup means she gets mistaken for a homeless person on occasion:


Here is a video on how to create the dirty look yourself with at home products.

If you’re interested in the real deal, you can purchase a “grunge” dirty pallet or a jar of the “Clean dirty”. Using your favorite makeup products, follow these simple steps to achieve the grittiest of “dirty” looks:

SkinIllust_palette 1. Put your sponge into this mixture, and blot in the areas that you want.

2. Highlight around these dirty bruises with light brown eye shadows (no glitter)

4. Make the sponge a little wet, and blot the colors together- make sure there are no lines or creases

3. For a 3D look you can rub a little Vaseline and coffee ground onto the skin.

4. Regular plain chap-stick will do the trick for the lips! No color necessary!



For best results with your hair, you ought not wash your hair for one day- so it can actually get a little dirty. The following day, put a little dry shampoo in it to reduce oil.

Braid three portions of your hair and straight iron those little braids. Let the heat cool down, and then take the braids out.

Use hair wax to twist portions of your hair, creating the piecey look. Then spray it with a styling spray.

Run your fingers through your hair and voila, grungy hair day! Here is a video if you’re a visual learner!

Hopefully these tips and tricks will help you accomplish the best Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead costume at the party!

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Wig Out: 2013′s Greatest Moments in Television Wiggery


When it comes to the world of film, wigs are absolutely everywhere. Without wigs, it would be virtually impossible for actors to achieve the right look for period dramas, epic fantasies, and other-worldly sci-fi flicks. But how often do these fabulous follicular fakes make it onto the small screen?

All. The. Time.

In the past year of television, there has been a near explosion of hairpieces and wigs — from talk shows like The View to dramas like The Good Wife and Boardwalk Empire. 

Here are my favorite moments in TV wiggery from 2013:

Downton Abbey

Set among the British aristocracy in the 20′s, Downton Abbey requires the actors to sport hairstyles that — while stunningly gorgeous — aren’t exactly what you’d call modern.

Maggie Smith Downton Abbey Wig

L: The Dowager Countess of Grantham (Downton Abbey), R: Dame Maggie Smith

Dame Maggie Smith normally rocks a chic bob, which definitely wouldn’t have been appropriate for the Dowager Countess of Grantham. Thanks to her perfectly coiffed wig, Maggie can pull off the upper-crust look for the show without sacrificing her fashionably-fierce granny appeal.

Rob James-Collier

Rob James-Collier

You might be surprised to learn who else wore a wig this last season. Rob James-Collier (the dastardly Thomas Barrow) found himself in a slight predicament.

“I was in role before we started filming this Downton. They agreed that I could shave my head for it and have a wig for this series. But I think they’d have changed their minds if they found out the price, it was about £3 to £4,000! I don’t know whether I have to pay or they do!”

Game of Thrones

From Daenarys’s intricate silver plaits to Melisandre’s perfectly fiery waves, the amount of detail that goes into the gorgeous wigs of Game of Thrones is mind-boggling.

Cersei & Daenerys

L: Cersei Lannister R:Daenerys Targaryen

For Cersei’s wig alone, the wig maker individually knotted different colored strands of hair onto a lace cap to create a bespoke golden blonde blend.

The show’s wigs are painstakingly maintained — regularly washed, styled, and stored on blocks made in the shape of the actresses’ heads.

Emilia & Lena

Actresses Lena Heady and Emilia Clarke

Furthermore. the actresses love them! Besides giving the dark haired beauties a sense of anonymity, they’ve become attached to their faux tresses.

“I keep asking to go out with the wig at night, but they insist there’s no way. They won’t let me go partying with it on! I would be killed on the spot. It’s silly to say, but when I take the wig off at the end of the day, I’m rather disappointed when I look in the mirror.” — Emilia Clarke (Daenerys)

Much like Downton Abbey, the wigs in Game of Thrones are ridiculously expensive. Since my daughter can’t spend $7000 on a wig for her GoT themed dinner party, she’s planning on grabbing a synthetic wig so she can spend more money on the costume itself.

Now if only someone could tell me where we could find some dragons….

Doctor Who

It’s a bittersweet moment for all Whovians when a Doctor’s time on the show ends. But for 11th Doctor, Matt Smith, his last moments filming the series were not only tearful, they were itchy.

After having shaved off his iconic floppy hair for his role in upcoming movie, How to Catch a Monster, Smith was stuck wearing a wig — lest the Doctor be forced into a regeneration just to explain a sudden buzz cut.

Doctor Who Wigs

Karen Gillian & Matt Smith rocking some awesome wigs.

But Matt was in good company. Former companion Amelia Pond, played by gorgeous red-head Karen Gillian, returned for a scene that left even the hardest-hearted fan in tears.

Gillian was also forced to shave her head for an upcoming movie — Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy — but her wig was extra special. Showrunner Steven Moffat explained,

“That wig is made of her own hair, it’s just detachable now. When they cut her hair they made a wig of her own hair. Doesn’t she look lovely?”

2014 is here and we’re well on our way to a wonderfully wiggy television season. Here’s hoping for a few more shaved heads and Pixie cuts!



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Halloween Accessories: Accentuate The Positive


With Halloween just days away, I think it’s imperative that we all forget the mad rush to squeeze in as much holiday craziness as possible and focus on doing the things that are the most fun for you.

If you’re like me, dressing up is a huge part of the fun of Halloween customs. And, when you’re trying to create that perfect look for Halloween, accessories can make or break a costume. For instance, I saw the world’s cutest clown costume for women, but without a swanky pair of black and white thigh-highs, the outfit loses some of its punch. The same is true for make-up, props, shoes or any other sweet little accessory. A complete look for the holiday is one that is pulled together, so as you create your costume, keep that in mind. Afterall, what’s a masquerade costume without a mask?

You know the saying, “Blondes have more fun”? I couldn’t disagree more, not because I’m a blonde and it’s a cliche, but because why limit fun to just one hair color!? Maybe it’s more fun to be have blue hair, or pink, purple or orange!? I am talking about costume wigs, of course. The perfect wig will complete an outfit, almost more than any other, so don’t skip this accessory. The same goes for make-up…is there such a thing as a costume that looks great sans hair and makeup? (Well, other than the questionably oriented gym teacher we all had from high school…you know with the androgynous look, mullet and tennis outfit?)

So, folks, take a cue from Gwenyth Paltrow when she said, “Beauty, to me, is about being comfortable in your own skin. That, or a kick-ass red lipstick.”

Emma Rae Curtis is a costume, dressing-up, makeup and accessories expert. She mainly writes about fun Halloween party, craft, and costume ideas, but she especially loves writing about all things costume and dress-up related.

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Hot New Makeup for Halloween


Make-up On A Stick

Even better than meat on a stick, this Halloween, if you’re looking for new makeup tricks to help you create your vision of the most amazing sparkling vampire or zombie, there’s lots of fun new products to try out.

For instance, I just learned about disguise stix, and given their growing popularity, I’m guessing you will soon, too. These sticks are coated in a creamy, basic Halloween make-up that goes on easily will a brush, sponge or by using the stick to apply it.

They also come in lots of colors, so they’d be great for just about any costume.  I think what would be nice about using them is that you could avoid getting as much product on your fingers or costume. Yay for staying semi-flawless for awhile on Halloween! (Actually, it never fails that once I am all dolled up for the occasion, I will promptly spill coffee all over myself…sigh. Ah, well. )

Glowing Creatures

Another cool make-up trend (probably inspired by those blue people in the Avatar”movie or those carnal vampires that run around with glitter on. )

Glow-in-the-dark Makeup SticksI am really into the new line of glow-in-the-dark-make-up and and glow-in-the-dark glitter. (Insert the whiny voice of Bob Wiley from the movie “What About Bob?” as he says, “I want, I need!” over and over and you’ll get an idea of how I feel about it.)

Pop singer Ke$ha wore it, and they even make glow-in-the-dark eyelashes…they’re really long and fantastic if you’ll be attending any black-light festivities.  When I think of the potential, I get choked up. How have we been expected to go out on Halloween for so many years (Years!) without it? Would you just look at the awesomeness potential of this stuff?

There’s more… you can turn yourself silver, haunted, horrifying or hilarious. As long as you have the right tools and tricks at your disposal, you’re destined to be the creepiest of them all.

Halloween makeup idea halloween

One more thing,  if you’re one of those hardcore, professional makeup people with a steady hand, and in all likelihood, a lifetime subscription to the Bob Ross Happy Little Trees School, then behold this:

Eyelid art via Geekologie


All I have to say is that its very impressive, I could never replicate it, but man, it sure makes me WANT a galaxy painted on my eyelids.

I’ve given you a taste of some of the newer offerings out there in terms of makeup, so don’t limit yourself. If you need more specific information on applying makeup or creating a specific look, there are some excellent tutorials online. I’m a fan of the Spider Queen video posted below.

Spider Queen Black Widow Halloween Makeup

Emma Rae Curtis is a costume/dressing up/makeup & accessories expert. She mainly writes about Halloween but also about all things costume and dress-up related.

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Be Bold: Tips on Wearing Wigs


Sexy Star Bright Fairy Costume Adult PlusI know of no finer occasion to sport some outlandish accessories than Halloween. Dressing in costume naturally lends itself to extreme looks and bold color, and to that end, one of the most incredible must-haves for a great Halloween getup is a wig. Wigs aren’t just to cover up a thinning hairline anymore.

Ancient Eqyptian statue depicting people in wigs. Image via Wikipedia.

Did you know that wigs have been around since the ancient times, and even the Egyptians wore them.  They are usually made of human or animal hair, or are synthetic.

Even if you are just trying them on, wigs are pure fun to experiment with.I’ve always wondered how I’d look with pink hair, or an afro, and at Halloween, I can find out if a just-for-fun wig works for me, or if there’s a hairdo out there that I should switch to…a brunnette bob, for instance.

wigs - Adult Fuchsia Pink Frenchie Grease WigOr a black one….oooh, better yet, maybe I was destined to be a fiery, fierce red head?

The best part about wigs is that they aren’t permanent, so it’s a change that you can put away in the back of the closet if it doesn’t suit you. Besides that, you can’t go wrong with a one-day wear if you always wanted to give your inner punk rocker a blue hair day. 

For those of us who don’t have that gorgeous mane, Halloween is a great time to experiment with wearing a wig for the first time. It’s becoming more socially acceptable for women to wear wigs on a day to day basis. In fact, a high-end wig made of human hair can cost thousands of dollars.

Princess Leia's Bun Things

But for this blog post, we’re going to discuss women’s wigs to wear as part of a perfect costume…and thankfully, those will usually cost less than $30. What would Rainbow Brite be without her signature flowing locks?Or how will would we ever know who Princess Leia is without those iconic cinnamon rolls…er, I mean buns on the sides of her head?

WIG CAP NUDEWhatever you decide to do with your hair for Halloween, if you go with a wig, don’t forget the wig tape, and a wig cap to hold your real hair in while you have that wig on.

Happy wig wearing!


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Extreme Halloween Make-Up: X-Men Mystique Edition


If you’re a big fan of X-Men (like my husband is), you probably want to make a bang at your next Halloween party by dressing up like one of them. If you have a big enough gang, you can even go together as different X-Men. One of the most popular but probably most difficult X-Men to dress up as is Mystique, first portrayed in the movies by Rebecca Romijn and most recently by Jennifer Lawrence, with the famous blue skin, yellow eyes and red hair.

Here’s a great tutorial if you need to see it versus just read it.

Putting on this make-up is a little bit more difficult than one would imagine because she’s not just simply blue like the Navis from Pandora. The scales on the side of her face are probably what will make people rethink their original guess of Avatar for your costume. In order to create these scales, you’ll first want to find some flesh latex, usually pretty easy to find at any Halloween special effects store.

Starting at the forehead, take a small make-up brush and put the latex on in any shape you’d like in any pattern you’d like. If you want to follow the pictures, they’re easy to find online, or you can be creative and make it your very own creation. Follow the forehead with the scales on the sides of your cheeks and even a little under the eyebrows if you so desire.

After the scales have dried, find some blue make-up or paint; cream make-up, body paint, just about anything will work (but you probably want to make sure that it comes off easily or else you’ll look like a smurf for a couple days). Using a large, round brush, carefully dab the paint on over the scales and across the rest of your face. Don’t rub it or else the scales that you so painstakingly applied will come off. Usually, you will need two or three coats to make it the correct shade of blue.

Next, find some dark blue or black eye shadow and apply it on your eyelids, applying it not only over the eyelid but up under the eyebrows as well. Then take eyeliner or even more eye shadow and apply it to your bottom lash line. You’ll want to make the scales stand out, so take an eye shadow that is a shade or two darker than the blue paint you used on your skin to paint over the scales and make them really pop.
Then comes the hair and eyes. You can either buy a wig or spray paint your hair. We recommend simply spray painting it with a temporary red hair spray because a wig will probably sit too far forward on your forehead and cover the scales you worked so hard to get. Once your hair is a satisfactory red, all that’s needed is yellow contacts if you really want to go all out. Those can be found at any Halloween store, along with most of the other necessary make-up.
I hope this helps you a bit. Mystique is a fun character to portray. If you really want to go all out, you can repeat the scales and paint process over your entire body. If not, finding a suit such as the one that Jennifer Lawrence wears in “X-Men First Class” requires make-up on only the face and body. Whichever you decide, all of your friends will be so impressed by your costume, but mostly by your awesome make-up. If you have a boyfriend or husband, have him dress in a X-Men Wolverine costume.

Emma Rae Curtis is a costume/dressing up/makeup & accessories expert. She mainly writes about Halloween but also about all things costume and dress-up related.

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Halloween Inspiration: The Rocky Horror Picture Show

Rocky Horror Picture Show Frank Furter Costume

Rocky Horror Picture Show Frank Furter Costume

Being a Halloween aficionado means that I get to dabble in the dark side here and there. (They lied about that whole cookie thing.)

I take my spooky alley tours seriously, with tickets bought on the first day they go on sale. I make Halloween sugar cookies, and decorate my house to the nines for the holiday. The Halloween fetish means that I also get to take in cult films, since the fans are so prone to dressing in costume.

For instance, fans of the “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” are still known for dressing up in full costume and participating in onscreen events (throwing paper, yelling out dialogue) as the film plays.

As one of the most famous wretchedly-awful-but-fantastic cult movies, you can’t go wrong by taking your holiday make-up to the max with Rocky Horror inspired face paint. Starring Susan Sarandon and Tim Curry, the film follows the epic journey of a young couple in love who have been trapped in a haunted house full of transexual alien deviants. If that offends you, ah well, (they are from Transylvania, afterall) this post is about make-up, so let’s focus on that.

To get that Rocky Horror Picture Show costume inspired look, you need lots of scarlet red lipstick, pale face paint, and painted-in eyebrows that sit well above your natural brows. You’ll need to start with a pale white foundation, making sure to accent the cheekbones with blush and to add dark color to accentuate any natural shadows.

Next you’ll want to lines your eyelids in a thick, dark line of black eyeliner and add false eyelashes to your top lid. Once you are done with that, add draw in and then fill your eyebrows.

Follow up with a dark black coating of black eye shadow. Think garish, dark and edge-y. For inspiration while you are getting ready, put on the Rocky Horror soundtrack and do the time warp dance, or take in a live showing if it’s in your area.


TRHPS Trailer

Emma Rae Curtis is a costume/dressing up/makeup & accessories expert. She mainly writes about Halloween but also about all things costume and dress-up related.

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Extreme Halloween Make-Up: Avatar Edition


The blockbuster movie “Avatar” may or may not have been a rip-off of Pocahontas, but the money that it garnered was nothing to joke about. Neither is the way that the film changed our pop culture. No doubt that the biggest costume of 2009 was a Navi from Pandora. While I admit to have never seen the movie, I know an Avatar costume when I see it, and a classic Navi costume has never really faded out. Obviously, the make-up to creating this costume takes a bit of work and if you’re reading this, you probably don’t know where to start. Let me help.

First off, if you have hair long enough, you want to braid your hair into the small braids; if not, they make wigs that emulate just about any hairstyle so the hair should not be a problem. Next, put a good layer of foundation on for a good base for your blue paint. Next comes the blue paint—similar to the Mystique make-up, a  cream paint or any kind of paint that won’t dye your skin for the next couple days is preferred. However, you will want this a shade lighter than what you wanted for Mystique, as Avatars requires a lighter blue.

You’ll want to paint your entire face and any other part of your body that will not be covered by clothing with the light blue color. Then, apply the eyebrows. Eyebrows on Pandora are much more dramatic than they are here on Earth, and you’ll want to draw those in with a thick black eyeliner or even black paint. Then add black eye shadow to “recreate” your eyes, as the eyelids of Navis are black. Sticking with the theme of black, use black eyeliner to create the cat eye effect.

Then, to create the stripes that are the trademark, mix the blue and black cream paint together and paint on patterns that face down towards your nose. Then, using white paint, underneath the stripes that you painted on earlier, place small white dots on your forehead and underneath your eyes. Next, take pink blush and brush your cheeks and the tip of your nose. Once the white paint has dried from two steps ago, put fake eyelashes on your top and bottom lashes.

You’re almost done, but now you have to make the ears because your ears probably don’t stick out like theirs do. Most craft stores have what is called hard paper—buy some of that and cut out the ears in an eye-shape. Paint them the same color as your skin and add some of the blue/black mix stripes.

Then, cutting a slot in the bottom of the ear, use a bobby pin to pin the ear to your own hair. Then add feathers underneath your hair and those are pretty easy to find at most department stores. Finally, put in yellow contacts if desired and voila! Your very own Navi from Pandora!

Emma Rae Curtis is a costume/dressing up/makeup & accessories expert. She mainly writes about Halloween but also about all things costume and dress-up related.

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Day of the Dead Costume for Halloween


For those of you who love the look of a gothic face for Halloween, I have an idea for you. It is called Dia de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead, which is a holiday tradition that originated in Mexico.

sugar skull make up

Day of the Dead Skull photo via poorbitchbeautyreviews.tumblr.com

That is where all the fancy face makeup comes into play or masks are worn and the dead are celebrated, which is a bit similar to Halloween here. The intricate patterns on the face  just fascinate me so, and I find that this style of make-up for Halloween is becoming ever more popular.

Above, I have posted a very good tutorial on how to do this style of make-up yourself. This make-up artist tells you all you need to know, and as you apply the make-up, it’s a handy video since you can pause the demonstration as you go about doing this. But, it really wouldn’t be a bad idea to have someone else help you out and do it. I know it can be hard to decorate your own face like that!

The items you’ll need include:

  1. White face paint (She uses Ben Nye, but I favor Mehron.)
  2. White face powder to set the paint (Also Ben Nye, but these are also great. )
  3. Primer for your eyelids
  4. An assortment of makeup brushes
  5. A large variety of the colors needed to fill all spaces (She uses eyeshadows.)
  6. Green face paint
  7. Maybe more than one Black eyeliner pencil and a sharpener
  8. Liquid black eyeliner
  9. Sparkly jewels for decoration (Use eyelash adhesive to stick them on)
  10. False eyelashes
  11. Optional contact lenses
Halloween gothic idea

Halloween gothic ideas photo via dracula clothing company

Adding additional touches to your ensemble, such as a black headdress, or red and gray roses are a darkly beautiful  way to express the costume theme. A mourning veil held in place by the flowers, and an old wedding dress or spanish-style gown would set it off rather nicely, too. To liven things up, have your partner join you in a suit, with his face painted also, his hair slicked back like Zorro! What a great couples’ Halloween costume that would be! With the right make-up and accessories, you can create an amazing Day of the Dead look this Halloween.

Emma Rae Curtis is a costume/dressing up/makeup & accessories expert. She mainly writes about Halloween but also about all things costume and dress-up related.

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Face Painting Ideas for the 4th of July


The 4th of July is just around the corner and perhaps you’re wondering what you can do with the kids during your family barbecue…well, why not have a face painting booth?

Face painting is a fun holiday activity that kids love and parents usually don’t mind. Plus, it makes for great photo opportunities. If you’re planning a get-together this holiday, don’t miss out on a chance to let your creativity go wild. Face painting doesn’t require much in the way of supplies, and almost anyone can do it. Here’s what you need to get started on your own face painting booth at your family function.

My favorite face paints actually come in a book from Klutz, and are safe, non-toxic and have this book includes some great illustration ideas. There are lots of varieties, however, so test out the ones you like the best. (If you find better ones, email me about them!)

For Independence Day face paint ideas, anything that coincides with the holiday is great, but if the kids don’t want to stick to stars and stripes, you don’t have to make them. The idea is to make it a fun experience. That said, you can paint a red, white and blue flag on the cheek of a little one, or a flag butterfly on a little girl. Boys will like the stars and stripes, baseballs and bats, army helmets, or Uncle Sam top hats. Why not paint an Uncle Sam beard, mustache and sideburns on a boy, and give him a top hat to go with?

Girls may like these ideas as well, but they may also like glitter added, lipstick or even Lady liberty. Wigs and hats, if you have them, complete the look and are fun for kids to wear to parades or fireworks displays.

Photo via ilikebigbows at blogspot.com

Emma Rae Curtis is a costume/dressing up/makeup & accessories expert. She mainly writes about Halloween but also about all things costume and dress-up related.

Posted in 4th of July for kids, 4th of July ideas, Awesome Halloween Things, Face painting ideas, Halloween Accessories, Halloween Make Up, patriotic make up, patriotic wigs | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment