What do you get when you combine the grim smile of Pennywise — the evil sewer-dwelling clown from It — with the madness of Beetlejuice, the mischievous, green-haired ghost in a black-and-white striped suit?
One terrifying makeup mash-up — and exactly the kind of spooky look Winnipeg makeup artist Maddy Harms has set out to create every day this month.
“My makeup just kind of started off as me doing eyeshadow and stuff in my bedroom,” the 21-year-old told host Marcy Markusa in a Friday interview with CBC’s Information Radio.
“And I’ve always loved Halloween. But for some reason, during the Halloween season in 2019, I really wanted to push myself out of my comfort zone.”
That’s when her 31 days of Halloween project took off. So far, this year’s looks — documented for Harms’s more than 800,000 followers across TikTok and Instagram — include several others inspired by movie characters.
There’s Nebula, the blue-and-purple cyborg from Guardians of the Galaxy — a look that saw Harms incorporate a bald cap into a makeup look for the first time, plus a lot of water-activated paint and eyeshadow.
Then there’s “Bootstrap Bill” Turner, a crew member on the legendary Flying Dutchman ghost ship from Pirates of the Caribbean.
For that one, Harms painted half her face green and glued on two seashells and a starfish, using scar wax and liquid latex.
“That look was pretty tricky,” she said.
“I had to just hold my face and hope for the best.”
And there’s Harley Quinn, the colourful-haired sidekick to the Joker in the Batman universe — a character Harms said she often gets compared to because of her own fluorescent locks.
“Everyone always tells me that I look like Harley Quinn because in real life, my hair is half pink, half orange,” she said.
Harms said she decided to do the classic jester-inspired comic book version of that character, which saw her paint her face white and her lips black.
She also donned what at first glance might appear to be a store-bought headpiece, but which she actually made by hand, with a mask painted on around her eyes and horns glued onto a bald cap and painted.
“That’s probably one that I’m most proud of,” she said.
Another of her favourites was her take on Mystique, a blue-skinned, orange-haired shapeshifting mutant from the X-Men universe.
There are also some looks that put a glamorous spin on classic Halloween costumes, like a mermaid with webbed fingers and a crown of seashells, and a pink and green pop-art zombie.
Harms said her love of makeup started when she was around 15, as a way to express herself and deal with anxiety.
“Coming home and just doing my makeup and sitting down was like my therapeutic release, almost,” she said.
“Every time I would have anxiety or panic attacks, I would literally just sit down and do my makeup, and I would just completely forget about everything because I’m focusing on one thing.”
But in the years since, it’s blossomed into something much bigger.
Nowadays, Harms has built something of a community with the people who follow her makeup looks and tutorials on social media, interacting with many of them like real-life friends.
“It’s really cool that I can do that,” she said.
“I wouldn’t be where I am today without everyone that has followed me and supported me over the years.”
Harms currently works at a MAC Cosmetics retail location and said she hopes to keep doing makeup for a living.
Information Radio – MB9:49Care to be spooked? Look no further than the makeup mash-up spook-tacular creations of Winnipeg makeup artist Maddy Harms