How to Remove Halloween Face Paint or Makeup

updated Sep 29, 2023
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

For safety reasons many schools, churches and other social events ask for kids to wear face paint instead of masks. We understand the reasoning, but sometimes it’s not the easiest to take off. Knowing what’s in your medicine cabinet already that will do the duty means you can remove the paint before your kids pass out face first on the sofa leaving stains for years to come.

Individually, each one of these face paint removers will do the trick, hopefully if you don’t have one you have the other!


For years this has been the standby of high school theater students across the country.

  1. Apply the vaseline.
  2. Wipe away immediately, no wait time!
  3. Wash your face after and dry.

Baby Wipes

  1. Fold your baby wipe in half length-wise and then in half again horizontally (so you have a small square). This will help keep it from tearing and give you a little more oompf when it comes to removing caked on Frankenstein face.
  2. It might require a few wipes, but they are an especially good strategy if you want to remove face paint on the go.

Baby Oil

  1. Using a cotton ball, dip and swipe baby oil across your child’s face.
  2. I recommend a full face wash afterwards to remove excess oil.

Baby Lotion

Regular adult lotion can work as well, but you may want to choose something made for babies or children which are often better for sensitive skin.

  1. Rub lotion into your face.
  2. Wash your face after and dry.

Makeup Remover

If you already keep makeup remover around the house, this is a great use for it. However, it is usually more expensive than the options above so you may want to make it your last choice.

  1. Using a cotton pad, apply makeup remover and wipe across your face.
  2. Wash your face after and dry.

You can also use cold cream but it’s not my first choice because it needs to sit on the skin for a minute, plus it’s usually pricier than the above options. If you are the plan ahead type, try testing the makeup or face paint on your children’s arm or even face before they need it for trick-or-treating or for a party. Although chances are slim, knowing about an allergy or adverse reaction beforehand is a plus!

Additionally, try to put lotion on your child’s face an hour before applying makeup. Having a primed face means their dry skin won’t be soaking up extra pigment from the paint and making it more difficult to remove later.