The Best Pop Culture-Inspired Halloween Makeup Tutorials for 2014


We’ve reached peak party time in the Halloween season, which means you’re either fretting about getting a costume together or putting the finishing touches on something amazing you’ve been planning for months. Either way, here is some inspiration from this year’s pop culture moments. From film and television to fashion and more, these dramatic makeup looks are as amazing as they are relevant.

Carli Bybel’s striking Daenerys Targaryen makeup tutorial puts the “game” in your “thrones.” The result is a dusky, but fresh and subtle look that allows Khaleesi’s emotionality and fierceness to shine through.

YouTube personality Jessica Harlow offers some retribution for those exhausted by the Frozen obsession and the Idina Menzel/Demi Lovato-performed theme song, “Let it Go.” She created a pretty and frostbitten, zombified version of Princess Elsa, complete with glittery skin trauma.

American Horror Story: Freak Show is currently giving everyone nightmares about killer clowns. John Carroll Lynch’s Twisty, the mute kidnapping creep at the center of a morbid plotline in the series, comes to life through a tutorial from Charlie Short (aka Pinkstylist). He’s a trained makeup artist who loves special effects/theatrical looks—and he enjoys taking requests from viewers.

We’re really impressed with Bethany Z’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes look. This year’s entry in the sci-fi series proved to be the most emotional yet—and that pathos is evident in this tutorial’s expressive line work and shading.

Muppets Most Wanted found audiences smack in the middle of a European jewel-heist caper. Ultra hyper makeup maven Kandee Johnson (coffee required before attempting these tutorials) helps us look like a “haute pig” — Miss Piggy, that is. Then she shares an inspired Muppets lip look that might be more fun to watch than wear.

Promise Tamang’s shows us how to get cheekbones that kill à la Angelina Jolie’s Maleficent.

Nothing says Halloween like a possessed doll, which is why the Conjuring sequel, Annabelle, was such a hit with audiences earlier this month. YouTuber Angie (aka goldiestarling) perfected the creepy porcelain doll look with this subtle, but effective makeover. The cracks in the face are a nice touch. Also, we’d probably wear goldiestarling’s 1920s-inspired fortune teller look on any random day of the week.

Galaxy prints reached peak popularity this year. Marc Zapanta (aka ThePrinceOfVanity) looked to the sparkling stars and dreamy nebulae to transform his face.

The third highest grossing Marvel movie of all time has inspired a slew of crazy makeup looks. James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy stars a gang of space-traveling misfits — humanoid aliens, genetically engineered raccoons, and other intergalactic species. Vin Diesel’s tree-inspired character Groot won the hearts of audiences (the actor’s “I am Groot” voice recording video drove the Internet wild), while Bradley Cooper’s Rocket became a fan favorite. It’s not every day that you see an anthropomorphic tree and raccoon shooting guns. And there’s been a lot of love for green lady Gamora, played by Zoe Saldana. After playing a blue humanoid in Avatar, this career progression seemed natural.

Zombies are here to stay—because the classics are classic for a reason. YouTube makeup celeb Michelle Phan has blended an undead look with an all-time favorite straight from the annals of cinema. Even as a flesh-eating freak, Breakfast at Tiffany‘s-era Audrey Hepburn is still rather charming.