An Intro to the World of SFX Makeup

Hi guys, it’s Mikaela! I’m a new writer for the Esta La Vida Blog! I’m extremely excited to be given this opportunity to share with you my art. I am an SFX makeup artist. I also dabble in face painting as well.

The Basics

  • Products
  • Molding
  • The works


Today I’m going to discuss the basics of doing special fx makeup and the products you will need before you create your first look. The main product I use is scar wax. You can buy scar wax an amazon or eBay but it is a bit pricy for some budgets. I opt for a cheaper scar wax that I make myself.

It gives the same results as a more expensive name brand scar wax. There are other products you can use to create the base of your wound, too. Some choose to work with liquid latex. I use liquid latex but I find it harder to smooth your edges into your skin. As for this I bought my liquid latex on sale for $1 a tube after Halloween. This is when I recommend an artist to get their start doing SFX makeup: right after Halloween. Now for the obvious product you need to create your looks, blood! I also make DIY blood which I will discuss in another aticle!

When you’re working with blood the key is to not overdo it. You want to be able to see the wound itself not just a puddle of blood in a hole on your skin. However, blood is amazing to cover up an edge you couldn’t get blended into your skin! Palettes are another key product you need in your kit. Personally my favorite palettes are water activated face painting palettes. They are very pigmented and are easy to fix any mistakes you may make. You can also include eyeshadow palettes in your kit! Some of the other products you may want to include in your kit are Vaseline, blood scab, brushes, and lots of cleaning products. (Invest in a cheap apron; blood doesn’t cooperate sometimes.)


Now I’ll explain molding. Molding is very important when working with scar wax. If you don’t pay attention to the shape of your wound you’ll end up with an unrealistic shape that no one will believe is a real wound. Sometimes it’s almost impossible to get your scar wax blended into your skin which can be very frustrating. This is where your Vaseline comes in. Rub the tips of your fingers in Vaseline and carefully blend the edges of your wound into your skin for a natural look. Make sure you have short nails if you’re a beginner or you’ll make odd cuts in the scar wax. Another thing to consider is the inside of your wound. Wounds aren’t smooth inside they’re rough and jagged. Some way to recreate this are to take a toothpick, knife, or anything small and sharp to rough up the insides of your wound. Another way you can do this is to put imperfect pieces of scar wax down in your cut to give it the realistic appearance you’re going for.

This is the molding I did for a more advanced wound I created.

“The Works”

The last thing I’m going to discuss in today’s article is something I like to call “the works”. By this I mean the extra coloring and blood you add to your wound to give it the realistic appearance an artist strives for. After you create your wound and you have the shape you’re going for you need to add shading. SFX makeup is just another form of art so shading is prevalent. For this step you’ll take blacks and sparsely paint them in the deep parts of your wound. For the rest of the wound use different shades of red to create a 3D appearance. Finally add blood with a sponge around the wound to cover any flaws in your scar wax. Then add blood with a dropper inside of the wound. Take pics!!

Thank you for taking the time to read my article! If you want to see more looks and content from me keep an eye out for more articles. You can also me follow me on the platforms I listed below! Thank you!!

Instagram: mikaelasmenacingfx

Tiktok: mikaelashockley

Facebook: mikaelasmenacingfx

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