So, some friends and I decided to dress up as zombies and just go out on a Tuesday in DC. This instructable is how we put together these costumes along with documentation of what ensued.
Step 1: Get Yo' Stuff
For this costume, we decided to use a combination of materials around the house as well as some facepaint and liquid latex. I prefer to use water-based face paint for cosutmes like this because of how quickly and easily it washes off, not to mention how durable it is during your costumed adventures.
Pictured here are all the materials, and I'll list them below to tell you what I used them for.
Background face color:
White and green to give that skin a nice necrotic look. You can also dust a little corn starch over the paint for a crustier look.
Black and white facepaint.
Black, purple, yellow, and green facepaint.
Red facepaint as a base.
DIY face blood made with corn syrup and red food coloring. This is a super simple recipe- 1 drop food coloring to every 1 tablespoon corn syrup. You can even add a little cocoa powder for a darker color if you'd like.
Liquid latex and toilet paper.
Scabs and scrapes:
Liquid latex, coffee, and/or oat meal.
Step 2: It's All About the Base
Using your white facepaint and a sponge, apply the white base liberally to any skin that is showing. As I mentioned, I mixed in a little green paint to make the skin look a little more dead and eerie. For this particular facepaint, you just add water and then spread it around. It dries pretty quickly, and you may need to add a few coats to get the color you want.
Pro tip: Don't forget the ears!
Step 3: Throw Some Shade(ing)
This isn't your 3rd grade costume anymore, we want to make these folks look like rotting corpses. My suggestion is to paint any hollowed areas of the face and neck using some black facepaint. Once you've got it in these areas (eyes, under the cheekbones, at the temples, under the nose, in any laugh lines, above the chin, and around the clavicle), use your fingers or a sponge to blend in the black with the white base to create contrast and depth.
Step 4: It's Only a Flesh Wound
Now for the fleshy gory segment to really sell it. This requires the liquid latex, some toilet paper, the coffee, and maybe some oatmeal. Although that sounds like a really rough breakfast, I promise it does wonders for making it look like your skin is falling off. \
For the wounds:
1. Rip up a piece of toilet paper to roughly the size of the wound you want.
2. Put down a thin layer of liquid latex wherever you want your flesh wound- use your finger or a makeup sponge.
3. Place the toilet paper on top of the wet layer of latex.
4. Put another layer of the latex on top of the toilet paper.
5. Once the latex has dried, use your fingernails or the tip of a brush or pencil to tear a small hole through the middle (yes, this is one time when you want the latex to tear).
6. To make the wound look more realistic, put a layer of red facepaint in the hole you made. add a little more latex on top of this paint and then stick some coffee grounds or oatmeal in there for a really gory effect.
7. Add some black makeup around the inside edges of the wound to make shadow of the "skin" a little darker.
For the scabs:
1. You put the latex on the skin.
2. While latex is still wet, stick on some of the coffee grounds or oatmeal. If you want to use the oatmeal, I would recommend mixing it with some latex first and then sticking it on top of the wet layer.
3. Stipple on some red and black facepaint overtop.
Pro Tip: Unless you would like to remove an unwanted hair, I highly recommend not putting the latex on hairy locations. Ouch.
Step 5: There Will Be Blood
Mix that fake blood up! A little bit goes a long way.
Put some of the blood inside wounds, on top of scabs, dripping from the nose and/or mouth. Get creative with it! If you pour a little down your chin, it looks like you have just finished zombie feasting- pretty sweet.
Pro Tip: Let the blood drip down from the wounds and scabs to make it look extra disgusting. Also, make sure not to get it on furniture, clothes, the cat, etc. That junk stains.
Step 6: Final Touches
This is the part where you add bruises, more blood, etc. to your zombies.
I wanted to give my lady zombie a nice choked-throat look, so I applied some purple, yellow, green, and black facepaint to my hand and went in for the death grip. (Please do not actually choke your friends. That is rude.)
Go around and apply this color combo anywhere that you would like some bruised accents, which could be around wounds, eyes, pretty much anywhere.
Lastly, use some food coloring to put a little color on those rotting teeth. Mmmm. Delicious.
Step 7: Go Exploring!
Terrify some strangers! Take some awkward family zombie pictures! Hang out in creepy places with weird lighting! Basically, just have fun with it.
I mean, you're a zombie.
YOLDO. You Only Live Dead Once.