What Are the Different Types of Pageant Makeup?

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  • Written By: Donna Tinus
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 02 December 2019
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Pageant makeup smooths out skin flaws, enhances beauty, and covers mild imperfections on the skin. Makeup for the pageant stage is darker and heavier than makeup for the judges interview off stage. Body makeup covers imperfections such as varicose veins. Glitz pageants for children allow for full makeup, but not as dark and heavy as adult pageant makeup.

An adult beauty pageant entrant should apply full makeup for any interview with judges or media during a pageant. This includes a base, foundation, powder, and blush on the face. The eyes are enhanced with false eyelashes or mascara, eyeliner, dark and light eye shadow. The lips should be lined in eyebrow pencil, lip liner, lipstick, and lip gloss.

Makeup for the stage is generally the same as for the interview, only slightly heavier and darker. This is needed to avoid having the face take on a pale appearance under the heavy lights. A base under the foundation will keep the foundation from sliding off due to excessive perspiration from the heat of the lights. A dusting of powder will keep the pageant makeup looking matte instead of sweaty.

Body makeup can cover scars or other skin imperfections. This is most helpful during the swimsuit competition portion of the beauty pageant. Many entrants use body makeup as a regular part of their pageant makeup. Care should be taken to avoid having the makeup come off on outfits when changing clothes.


Child pageant makeup should be applied with a lighter hand than adult pageant makeup. The colors should also be lighter. Light shades of pink are appropriate for a child's lipstick and blush and should be applied sparingly. A light shade of eye shadow in a color to match her dress with false eyelashes or mascara is all that's needed for a child's makeup.

To keep pageant makeup looking fresh and beautiful, an entrant should use the appropriate makeup for her individual skin type. Oily skin needs specialized products to inhibit oil production, such as an oil-control spray before applying an oil-control makeup. Dry skin requires moisturizer to allow cream foundation to glide on. Large pores benefit from a pore-minimizer that is applied before the foundation. This sets the foundation and helps to minimize pores.

Discolored skin will benefit from a dark-spot corrector or a color-correcting primer applied before a full-coverage foundation. Skin redness can be reduced by neutralizing the skin with an alcohol-free toner. A concealer is then applied under a creamy foundation to even out skin tone.


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Post 2

Something the article didn't mention is the different kinds of pageant makeup categories. There are natural pageants, where the girls wear little or no makeup, glitz pageants where the girls wear a good bit of makeup and then "full" or "high" glitz, where the girls wear full makeup, false crowns on their teeth, hairpieces, spray tans and the like.

Even the kid pageants have paid makeup artists, and their fees can be as much as anything else in the pageant.

Post 1

Ever watched the shows about pageant kids? They don't use a light hand with makeup, and they surely don't use lighter colors! I've seen those moms use cherry red lipstick and enough glittery eyeshadow for three people. There's nothing subtle about the way they do makeup for those girls.

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