Old make up in 10 steps

Well, I never thought I would publish a makeup tutorial. Apart from compliments for my eyeliner (on point!), I consider my make-up skills to be pretty average. But this tutorial is not about "normal" make-up to make up, but to make up with make-up old. Who wouldn’t want to limp around for a day as a senior citizen, feeding ducks in the park and either raving about the good old days or calling today’s youth lazy good-for-nothings??

Right before the start of the new semester I had the pleasure to learn in a workshop how to do make-up for the (theater) stage and the camera. Creating dazzling bruises with oil paint or frighteningly realistic wounds with fake blood and wound filler (yes, that’s what it’s really called) is a lot of fun, but unfortunately you need the right equipment from a specialist shop to do it. What works, however, quite simply and also with drugstore products, is just the "on old make-up". Full of drive and with the ulterior motive to be able to use it soon in a film production (Schommernacht or something for the university), I bought the materials. The first attempt at myself (at the workshop we always made up each other) I then immediately times pictorial and created a small tutorial:

What you need

So, basically you need a foundation; something for shading and highlighting, something for coloring the hair as well as matte powder. Of course, there are great (and expensive) products from various brands – but for the tight purse, drugstore products are also quite sufficient:

  • Alverde Compact Make-Up (darker than your own skin tone)
  • Essence eyebrow stylist set o1 natural brunette style
  • Essence all about matte! fixing compact powder
  • oil-based theatrical make-up/color in white
  • a soft powder brush
  • 1-2 thin brushes for the shadows
  • a thin brush for the highlights
  • (a little sponge for applying the make-up)

Exactly these products were also used during the workshop. According to my instructor, Alverde makeup has proven itself, as it very rarely causes allergic reactions in actors and actresses. Theatrical make-up is always available at carnivals and Halloween in the drugstore, everything else is from the standard assortment.

Step 1: the naked truth

Before we start with the old make-up, the face should be removed and dry. Don’t worry about dark circles under your eyes, we’ll put makeup on them afterwards anyway ;) Larger pimples could now be covered with a concealer or camouflage cream – luckily my skin is pimple-free at the moment.

Step 2: Primer

The face is now primed with Alverde Compact Make-Up. This is especially important when you are on stage or planning a photo shoot with additional light sources – when it gets warm, you quickly start to shine. The make-up is applied with the enclosed sponge applicator. Don’t forget the skin under the eyebrows and the transition to the neck – and in the case of actors, the ears, because they turn flaming red when excited.

Fortunately you can’t see it on the photos, but my skin is a bit too dry for this make-up. I should have used a cream before. In addition, the make-up contains light glitter particles. Good thing I only bought it for stage makeup and not for everyday use.

Step 3: Contouring

If you’ve ever tried contouring& Highlighting a la Kim Kardashian has employed, is now clearly at an advantage, because the principle remains the same: those parts of the face that fall into the shadow in "natural sunlight" are made darker. At the makeup workshop we learned that as a basic three areas are contoured: the temples, the cheeks and the nose.

To set the contours (or shadows) we take the light eyebrow powder from the eyebrow styler set of Essence. With a thin brush the lines are set and then blended. Where exactly to place the shadows depends on the face shape and bone structure.

At the temples (around the outer end of the eyebrows) I set a relatively hard edge and blend it towards the ears. Where the cheek has to be contoured, you can see quite well in the unmade-up state, that is then traced with the powder. For the nose, you start pretty far up, almost at the beginning of the eyebrows, and drive along the wing of the nose. Especially for the nose there are many techniques to change the shape (snub nose, crooked nose…) – there are surely good tutorials online for it!

When applying make-up, the powder admittedly looks "too much" and for everyday life it would definitely be too elaborate – however, you have to keep in mind WHAT you are applying make-up FOR. A theater actor sitting on stage several meters away from the audience MUST have exaggerated make-up in order for the effect to be noticed at all. For a photo shoot with close-ups, the make-up must of course be more discreet.

For the base stage make-up, by the way, the only thing missing now is white kohl on the waterline and brown kohl directly underneath (only in the outer third). This makes the eyes look bigger; however, I didn’t feel like it today.)

Step 4: Eye rings

So, the basic theater make-up is done, now it’s time to age :) First I give myself stronger eye rings. For this I use a thin brush and the dark color of the Essence eyebrow powder. Attention, this is the only step where I use the dark powder! Otherwise, only the lighter tone is used.

With the brush I now trace the natural "line" of my eye shadows – be careful not to go too far towards the ears, otherwise it will look unnatural.

For a more natural look, I blend this line towards the eye:

If I want, I can now fill in the inside with the lighter powder color:

Phew, looks like a sleepless night already, doesn’t it??

Step 5: Forehead wrinkles

Now come the wrinkles! You don’t paint them up on a whim, but you go by your real wrinkles. For this you have to make different grimaces, for example grim or astonished. (If you already have visible wrinkles, you can of course simply repaint and intensify them.)

It is important to emphasize those wrinkles that you actually create in your natural facial expression.


This is how it can look then – some repainted forehead wrinkles, as well as the "frown lines" on the eyebrows that give you a grimmer look.

Step 6: the remaining wrinkles

Speaking of grimmer: With theater make-up you want of course Shaping characters. I am a dear granny with chubby cheeks and laugh lines? Or a grim grumpy grandmother with severe facial features? Of course, this must be taken into account when applying make-up. You can emphasize laughter, anger or worry lines, use eyebrows to radiate severity or make people look skinny with strong cheek shadows.


You can also represent different ages. In addition to the wrinkles drawn above, you can, for example, draw wrinkles along the lips (curled like this, you know what I mean)?) or above the eyebrows.

By the way, if you "paint" a line thicker than you want, you can easily correct it by either dabbing foundation over it again, or by holding the powder brush tightly (see picture) and using the matte powder to soften it:

powder brush

In general, you should apply too thick rather than too thin ;) Finally, in the end, the entire face is powdered with the setting powder and then the effect is already softened.

Step 7: Hightlights

Where there is shadow, there is light.. Or like this. The highlights are set in the old make-up, however, not with glittery highlighter powder, but with white paint on oil base, for example, this clown make-up of Jofrika, which is easy to buy seasonally. For application I used the small synthetic brush that came with the eyebrow set.

The highlights are always set close to the shadow, depending on the light. With forehead wrinkles, for example, the light usually comes from above, so the highlight must be above the shadow (valley).


Step 8: Eyebrows

Looks much more plastic, or? Something is still missing to look realistic: the eyebrows! Wouldn’t it be funny to have a lot of wrinkles as a granny, but still dark and thick eyebrows??! Therefore, these are also colored white with the clown make-up and the small brush – against the line! Old people often have stubborn eyebrows, so pay attention to them!

To perfect the whole thing, of course, the entire hair would have to be "colored" white or gray. If you don’t want to jump on the granny hair trend bandwagon, you can do it with baby powder or dry shampoo. I hope you forgive me for not doing this today.

Step 9: Powdering

When all wrinkles and highlights are set so far, the face is thoroughly powdered with the mattifying powder. So everything stays where it should, and survives even the heat of the headlights. If certain lines have been toned down too much, they can be carefully redrawn.


Step 10: Finished!

Now we are ready! If you like, you can of course shape your character even further – a "dear" granny, for example, could not be made up with eye shadow and blush; for a pale and sick look, I still dabbed foundation on the lips, so that they look less rosy.


Despite flowery cuddly sweater I am probably rather a grumpy granny, or? What do you think? :)

By the way, it is much more difficult to make up oneself than to do it on another person! Next, I want to go wild on my friend – including a white beard! Before the workshop I would not have thought that one to the old make-up and/or. can use normal drugstore products for stage make-up. If you ever have the chance to participate in such a workshop: take it! Is crazy fun!

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