Tuesday, January 7, 2014

3-Ingredient Homemade Face Paint

Today was our second snow day in a row and it seemed like as good a time as any to test out this recipe for homemade face paint that I had seen here. (I've mentioned it before, but I love trying out new paint recipes, so I am always up for new ideas.) It was simple enough since it only called for three ingredients, all things that I keep in the pantry. These face paints were quick to make, and easy to apply with a regular paint brush.

{She requested a colorful bird on one cheek.}

I know some folks may be concerned about the safety of food coloring, but personally, I see no problem with applying it externally, especially since they kept it on for only a short time. I can't tell you how long it lasts since the kids got bored with their painted designs before they were even completely dry! I can tell you with certainty, though, that this face paint wipes away readily with nothing more than a damp cloth, so it gets high marks for that alone! Feeling optimistic, I covered my muffin tin with saran wrap and popped it in the fridge to try again another day...

{Yes, it's that easy to make face paint!}


  • 1 tablespoon shortening (I used Crisco)
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • food coloring (I used 1-2 drops per color)
  • mini muffin tin (or similar, to hold paints)
  • bowl and spoon/s for mixing
  • paint brush (or sponge, for paint application)


  1. In a bowl, combine the shortening and cornstarch, and mix until smooth.
  2. Spoon into the compartments of a mini muffin tin (or other containers, such as bowls.) I made 6 colors total, so I used all the sections of my tin. If you only want one color, you can skip this step.
  3. Add food coloring. Spoons work well for blending the food coloring into the shortening/cornstarch mixture, and can be quickly wiped clean between colors. (I used 1 drop of each of the following: red, yellow, green, and blue. For orange, I combined 1 drop red + 1 drop yellow. I planned to make purple with 1 drop blue + one drop red, but wound up with gray instead. Weird! For purple, I would try the neon purple food coloring, straight up, next time.) 
  4. Apply face paints to clean, dry skin. To remove paints, use a damp cloth. Soap was unnecessary for us.

{Color mixing snafu = adorable puppy face!}

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