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How to Do Cheeks & Stitched Lips for Day of the Dead Makeup

Learn to do cheeks and stitched lips for Day of the Dead makeup from makeup artist Ciara Rose Griffin in this Howcast special FX makeup tutorial.


Let me show you how to contour up the cheeks a little bit, and also create the stitched lips. So, I'm mixing a little bit of my pale color with black to create a grey that I will use for contouring the cheeks. This can be as extreme or as subtle as you want. Again, I'm going for a more subtle look, so I'm going to do a light grey instead of a dark black. I'm going to make the contour a little bit softer.

So, I'm going to take my sponge or brush, and I'm going to get a little bit of that grey color on it and I'm going to put it along the cheek bone, the bottom of the cheek bone, just dabbing that in there. Once it's in there, I'm just going to blend it up and down a little, so it's a really subtle but beautiful contour. Just blotting that onto her skin, and I'm going to blend it up and down.

You can do a really sever contouring by doing a severe dark color here and then blending that out. We're just doing a very gentle, gradual... Also here you can feel where your head indents into your temples. We're going to do a little shadow there. Her eyes are right here. Everybody's face is a little different, so it's okay to touch to find those hollow spots. It's easy, when you're using a really light make-up, to see your fingerprints in it. So before we powder this, we'll go over it to make sure we don't have any major finger indents.

Looking at that, I'm really liking the way these shadows look, so I'm going to add a more severe shadow to her cheekbones. Now, onto the lips. I'm going to take my black color with my angle brush. If you don't have these tools at home, it's no problem. You can use Q-tips or anything else you might have. Now I'm going to create the stitched lip coming out and try to match it on the other side. Now, I'm going to go across the opposite direction with gentle, little marks. Now, depending on how you want your sugar skull to look, you can apply lipstick or a burst of color on the lips, or you can just add stitch marks across the lips, which is what I am going to do. If you want, inside the lip, you can add a little bit of dark color. I'm going to have you open a little. Close. And that creates the stitch mark across the lip.

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