Before butterfly- and goddess-inspired social media filters monopolized our costume choices, there was Heidi Klum, Hollywood’s unofficial muse regarding all things Halloween. Leave it to the supermodel to test-drive all brilliant costume ideas pre-social media phenomenon. Back in 2014, Klum dressed up as a butterfly—a somewhat terrifying butterfly outfitted in the most ginormous insect eyes we’ve ever seen, but a butterfly nonetheless.
Of course, you could go that route (i.e. super theatrical), or you could channel Klum’s butterfly effect with a less bug-centric vibe instead. Personally, we’re thinking the latter, so we decided to hit the bottomless depths of the Internet—ahem, YouTube—to find the best Halloween butterfly face makeup tutorials worth trying this year. While choosing our favorites was tough, we landed on a select seven that are not only breathtakingly ethereal but also surprisingly easy to master. We spoke to makeup artists Glenn Brownell and Jamie Dornan for their tips and tricks on how to complete the ultimate metamorphosis. Ditch the pricey costumes and get ready for Halloween with these easy butterfly makeup tutorials.
Crazy Colorful Butterfly
Okay, yes, we understand mermaids and butterflies represent two very different and very popular costume camps once Halloween rolls around, but why not have the best of both worlds? This aquamarine interpretation of the classic butterfly vibe is everything we want from a memorable costume and makeup moment this Halloween. Beauty lover and vlogger Divide.N.Contour walks us through the look of our fin-tasies. Get this look using the Just My Luck palette ($14) from Colourpop. This affordable palette has the perfect combination of blues and greens to nail the look. When working with super pigmented shadows, fallout can be an issue. “To prevent fallout, tap excess powder off of your brush, and tip your head back as you apply shadow. If the product has a lot of fallout, it may be necessary to hold a tissue under your eye while applying,” Dorman explains.
Blue lashes, yellow lids, pink hair, and a smattering of periwinkle butterflies? YouTube vlogger Sherliza Moé is butterfly perfection. We’re 100 percent transfixed with this Halloween makeup tutorial that’s one part fairytale, one part butterfly, and frankly, we’re itching to try it out for ourselves. Oh, and just in case you decide to opt in for the wig, Nicki Minaj’s very own mane master, Kendall Dorsey, gave us his best tips and tricks when it comes to Halloween wearing a wig. For a look like this, Brownell recommends to start with the eyes first.
“Start with the eyes first, especially if you’re using things like loose glitters and pigments, otherwise things will get messy. Then you can wipe any fallout clean without having to patch up any of the rest of your makeup,” Brownell explains.
Moé used the Shimmering Vision ($81) cream eyeshadow palette from Kryolan for this mesmerizing eye look, topping it off with blue glitter.
It’s no surprise we’ve translated all of our favorite social media filters into real-life Halloween looks over the years. (Baby fawn, anyone?) Alas, the oh so popular golden butterfly filter is one of our all-time faves, and thanks to My Pale Skin, we’re finally getting a glittering how-to just in time for this year’s Halloween shenanigans. The headpiece is the star of the show here, but we also lust over the simplicity of gold shimmering lids, wispy ink-black lashes, and the perfect nude pout. While this look may seem daunting, Dorman reminds us, “For first-time costume makeup applying, I would recommend choosing products with textures you’re familiar working with. If you tend to use a lot of powder eyeshadows, get powder pigments. If you use more creams, get cream-based makeup. It will be easy to create new looks with textures you already know how to work with.”
Lastly, the golden butterflies are essential to nailing the look, and we love these decal stickers ($8) from Amazon. Think of this one as butterfly Halloween makeup for the minimalist—or in our case, the procrastination artist.
This baby-pink butterfly makeup is the most whimsical we’ve seen. Thus, if you’re planning to ignore the scary side of the costume spectrum this Halloween and want to go with something more ethereal instead, we think this look courtesy of Miss Make Over is the ultimate antidote. The process is surprisingly easy to master, and she even explains the magic behind her DIY headpiece, which, of course, is essential. Our favorite part? The larger-than-life lashes that tie the whole look together. The House of Lashes Iconic False Lashes ($12) will give you this doll-like effect right at home.
Vlogger Julia Graf describes this Technicolor take on Halloween butterfly makeup as “butterfly fairy,” and we’d have to agree. The sky’s the limit as far as your color palette goes, but we’re big fans of the way Graf interspersed bright pops of magenta, fuchsia, and electric orange and yellow. To make this look really pop, Graf first applied white face paint all over her neck and chest. Replicate this look at home using the Vivid Brights Crème Color ($10) from NYX—just make sure you prep your skin properly before applying an all-over face color.
“For costume makeup I prefer to use lighter moisturizers that soak into the skin. A lot of costume makeup is water-based and will work best in moisturized skin that isn’t greasy. I like Paula’s Choice Water-Infusing Electrolyte Moisturizer ($37),” Dorman shares.