How to Become Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas

Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas
Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas

Trying to figure out what to be for Halloween this year? Well, if you happen to be a fan of The Nightmare Before Christmas and don’t mind spending a little extra time to get ready then dressing up as Sally will be perfect for you! I didn’t use classic face paint like what would be most appropriate for this look. Instead, I mixed together different types of makeup. This method used up more of my makeup than I would have liked and did not keep the black lines (stitches) and pupils on the “eyes” as clean as face paint. If you are interested in following my makeup procedure, keep reading. If you plan on using face paint, I will explain that alternative in less detail as well.

Foundation Step
Foundation Step

Sally has extremely pale skin with a bluish hue. I used Revlon ColorStay foundation in a light shade that I had laying around (I would not suggest using expensive foundation as you do not want to waste it) and mixed it with purple and green corrective concealers to make that bluish color. Even using a light blue eyeshadow mixed into a foundation would be a good idea. Use a brush or your fingers to spread it all over your face, down your neck, and onto your chest (pretty much wherever your skin will be showing). *For face paint, use a white color mixed with a little bit of blue to make the foundation*


Sally's Eyes
Sally’s Eyes

The next step is creating Sally’s large eyes. Use an eyeshadow primer on your eyelids and all the way up under and on top of your eyebrows. I used a white correcting concealer on top of the primer, because I did not have anything else. The best option would be to get a pearl-colored cream (as white and opaque as possible) and spread it with your fingers or a brush all over your eyelid and up into an oval shape all the way over the eyebrows. You do not want your eyebrow color to be seen at all through the white color. The picture to the right will show you where the white “eyes” should be placed. *For face paint, use a very white color to create Sally’s eyes*

Sally's Finished Eyes
Sally’s Finished Eyes

Use a blue eyeshadow and draw it in a think line around the white “eyes,” including under your own bottom eyelids. The line does not have to be perfect and it should look slightly faded. Once you do this, use a black gel or liquid liner to define the eyes by going around the white edge of the “eyes” but inside of the blue ring that you just drew (continue the liner under your waterline as well). Now you need to make Sally’s eyes look real by drawing pupils inside the “eyes.” The pupils should be the size of a bead and looking off in the distance, however, do not place the pupils on your actual eyelids. Try to make the pupils as even sized as possible and in the same location on both “eyes.” Lightly brush translucent powder all over your face and eyes to set them if you used cream or liquid products. This will keep the makeup in place and not make you feel sticky all day. Using a grey color eyeshadow or faded liner, create Sally’s eyelids by connecting the inner top part of the “eyes” to the outer top part. Use the blue eyeshadow around the eyes once more to make them seem even larger. In this example, I drew on Sally’s eyelashes by using eyeliner to flick up lines around the corner of Sally’s eyes going from longer to shorter (outside corner being the longer section). If you want to go all out, which I definitely encourage, cut up pieces of eyelashes and glue them, using eyelash glue, to the top the “eyes.” This will really make her eyes stand out and create an awesome effect. *There is no real face paint step here besides using a blue color around the eyes, but even then I suggest using eyeshadow instead since it will be softer*

Sally has a rather large, circle head so to create this illusion you will want to use a lot of blue color on your face and neck. I skipped this step simply because I did not have the appropriate shade. Using a large face brush, brush the blue color lightly on the sides of your face under your cheekbones and under your jawline. Brush the color down both sides of your neck as well since Sally has a very thin neck. Color under the tip of your nose with the same blue shade to mimic Sally’s nose. If you are unfamiliar with contouring, I would suggest checking out my Contouring 101 post. The point of the blue color is to reduce that section of the face and neck while also keeping in line with the non-living theme. *I would not suggest using face paint for this step*

IMG_3089Now it’s finally the time to draw on what makes Sally recognizable: her stitches! Draw a curved line from the top of your forehead to the right corner of Sally’s right eye with black liquid or gel liner. Now make another short curved line from the bottom right corner of Sally’s right eye until right under your cheekbone. You want it to seem as though the line from your forehead connects to the line under your eye while still allowing Sally’s “eye” to be the gap in between the two. Draw a line using the liner on both sides of the mouth that curve slightly upwards almost like a small smile. Stop this line about one or two inches away from the ears. Now draw a couple of “X”s and small perpendicular lines on the lines that you just drew spacing them out equally. The picture on the left is a good visual for which you can copy. I used regular black pencil eyeliner to stencil around my lips, however, if you have black lipliner that would be even better. Now use your favorite red or dark red lipstick to fill in the rest of your lips. *For face paint, use a black color to draw on the stitches and a red color for the lips, but lipstick should still be preferred*

IMG_3097Sally also has stitches on her neck and chest so you will need to draw those as well if you are going to wear a dress or outfit that displays that area. Make a curved line around your neck like a chocker necklace and a line down the center of your chest starting at the middle of your collarbone. One or two inches down from your collar bone, make another horizontal curved line. Draw the “X”s and lines just like you did for the other stitches. *Just like the other stitches, use black face paint to draw them on*


IMG_3105No Sally is complete without the red hair! I did not have a wig so I just used an app called You Cam Makeup to add the red hair to myself. You can see that when you close your eyes, it creates a very creepy effect. Sally’s eyes are suddenly very large and open as soon as you close your own eyes. This was my first attempt at Sally so practice definitely makes perfect. Do not get discouraged if it does not look perfect at first. The next time I try this look, the lines and everything else will be much cleaner and better-looking. If you keep practicing, it should be perfect just in time for Halloween! Now all you need is your very own Pumpkin King a.k.a. Jack Skellington and you will be the best mad-scientist, undead experiment you can be! Have fun and happy hauntings 😉

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