Sally-The Nightmare Before Christmas
A Classic Halloween Look
I LOVE The Nightmare Before Christmas! Who doesn’t? I enjoyed creating this look, but I’m not going to lie, it was pretty time consuming. So, I’m going to break it down for you and make it as easy as possible to follow. Here we go!
A little bit of prep work is involved. You’ll need some craft string from your local craft store in a black color. Make sure its relatively thick. You’ll just want to cut that into little tiny pieces. These will be your stitches and you’ll glue them onto your face later.
First, you want to create the little seams on your face where the stitches will go later on. Do this by using cotton and liquid latex. I go further into how to use liquid latex in this post, so be sure to check that out if you are new to using it and need a quick run down. Try to reference the placement of these seams from the ones Sally actually has: on either side of her mouth, diagonally across her forehead and under her left eye continuing on that diagonal line. Start by pulling apart a cotton ball into little strips. Paint some latex onto the areas of your face where you want the seams and place the little cotton strips right on top. Paint another layer of latex over top of the cotton and make sure its soaked. You have a couple minutes til it dries, so this is your chance to blend the edges into your skin. Do this by taking a palette knife (metal makeup spatula) and smoothing the edges of the latex out, making sure they are spread against the skin. Create every seam this way and let it dry. You’ll know its dry when it has changed color to a more opaque shade. Powder over it with some RCMA translucent powder to keep it from getting stuck to the other brushes and such you’ll be using around these areas.
Now we can Start painting! I used Snazaroo face paint in white and black along with Kryolan Aquapaints in a baby blue, teal and light grey color. I had to mix the white, grey, and teal together to get Sally’s color. This part is up to you- you can make her as teal or as grey as you’d like- she just has to have a consistent color all over her face and neck. If you’re wearing this out, it will help to have the remainder of the exposed skin on your body painted with the same color you mix up for the face. Use a large brush to do this so it doesn’t take forever. Keep in mind you will have to paint on more than one layer to get it to the right opacity. The less water you use with the paint, the more opaque it will come out. Wait for each layer to dry before you apply the next one, or you’ll end up moving the bottom layer around and it will turn into a muddy, streaky mess. Do paint over your seams, but only after they are dry and powdered.
You COULD block out your eyebrows for this, but I just went right over the top of mine with the face shade because I knew you’d hardly see them behind my crazy Sally lashes we’ll be adding later. Now take the baby blue paint and pale it out by mixing in some grey. Take this color around the eye sockets in a nice circle. After that dries, go in with your white to create the eyeballs. The Snazaroo white is much easier to work with for me than the Kryolan white, but that’s just my recommendation. The key here is making this white color as opaque as you can. Get close to the eye, but for goodness sake, don’t get it IN your eye. I used some Mehron Hair White on a blank spoolie (mascara wand) to coat my lashes in white paint, helping them blend into the “eyeball” we just made. Go over your seams with a light wash of the blue paint. To make the pupils on the eyes, I used black grease paint from the Ben Nye Bruise Wheel instead of water activated so that i wouldn’t run the risk of it turning grey.
Once the paint is dry, go in with some eyeshadow to add dimension. I used mostly the colors in the Saucebox etude palette: black, white, taupe shadows. Go over the eyes with the white shadow, and shade under the eyes with a bit of grey. You can contour your face with a small amount of black eyeshadow (under the cheek bones, temples, nose for sure, and in the crease if your cupid’s bow). On the outsides of each seam, shade with some of that taupe/grey eyeshadow.
Now its time to start stitching!…well, gluing on your stitches. Take the little pieces of black jewelry cord you cute earlier and some eyelash glue. You can also use spirit gum, but I found this to be the easiest. I used false lashes and glue from Daiso, the Asain dollar store. The best thing about this glue is that you don’t have to wait for it to get tacky like normal lash glue. Paint on some of this glue right over your seams in either horizontal or diagonally crossing lines, and lay the little cord pieces directly on top. Press down gently on each piece and do this one piece at a time. This is the part that takes a while but really pulls the whole look together. Once its all dry, take the black grease paint on a small detail brush and create little divets at the edges of each piece of cord. We’re trying to create the illusion that each piece is actually poking through the skin. Contour with a brown or black paint and highlight with the white paint around the inside area of where the stitches lay and cross over the seam to emphasize they are on top of the skin. Use my photos to help you see what I mean. Now glue your lashes on. Place them just under your eyebrow (where the top of your painted eyeball is) and lay them flat against the skin, sticking upward. Just make sure they are long and dramatic enough to resemble Sally’s lashes.
I used a bit of the black grease paint mixed with red grease paint from that Ben Nye palette to create the perfect lip shade. I painted that on, being sure not to make it too perfect and clean looking. Add some more darkness around the edges of the lips for dimension.
Now throw on a costume! My Red Wig is from Walmart, but if I were wearing this out, I’d go for a wig that was specifically meant for a Sally costume. I also popped in some white contacts from ttdeye so that my eyes would look kind of Sally-ish with a tiny black pupil and no colored iris, when my eyes are open.
And that’s all she wrote! See you tomorrow for Day 10!