Coolest Homemade Joker Halloween Costume

It was October 12, 2012 and I had survived my first real college history test (I’m a freshmen for the loudest and proudest fightin’ Texas Aggies! Whoop!). Biking the one mile back to my dorm, my phone rings. Brrrring! Brrring! Stepping off my bike and reaching for my phone (yeah, I’m not skilled like some of you out there), I start crossing the street (legally, mind you) and BAM! An incoming bicyclist hits me! Spinning around, my knees tumble and the asphalt takes off most of my left knee. The bicyclists rode off into the sunset leaving the bleeding me behind…will I ever catch him? Find out next time. Same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel (the answer is no by the way for those of you clutching your seats)!

So in my recovery time, I began researching Halloween costumes since my dorm is throwing a competition. After much searching, I realized that good Joker costumes are far and few between unless you are not a poor college student.  Now to uncover the riddle of a cool female joker costume that you can create (with or without knees)!

Lucky for me, my knee was pretty healed up by Halloween night, which was pretty perfect for me. I did win the costume competition at my dorm (which just won me bragging rights), but it was totally worth the effort since I scared eleven people going to the competition! They all jumped mile high and cursed (more guys then girls).  See you next time, Same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel!

The Research, The Hunt, and The Color Problem

The Joker costume has several parts, like an outside jacket, inner vest, inner shirt, skirt, leggings, shoes, and makeup. You might want to write a list like I did or take a picture (so you don’t forget a piece and end up bike-cycling two miles back to the nearest Ross store).

After finding an online map, I went to Ross (I actually got lost due to the heavy rain pour and ended up at the mall first, but found my way to a Ross store) and purchased a navy blue outside jacket ($10), white shirt with collar ($7), and a black above knee skirt ($5). I already had a white waist vest that would do.

Last time I checked the Joker wasn’t navy blue and black! Oh dear! If only Superman was here! Well, Superman didn’t show up, but I hopped upon my noble stead, bike, and made it to a Hobby Lobby where I bought light green dye, olive green dye, and purple dye all which could be used in hot water without a machine (I didn’t want to mess up somebody else’s clothes in our public clothes washing area…although that would have been pretty sinister! Mahahah!) You might want to skip on the olive green dye unless you want your vest to be military colored. I highly recommend Dylon Intense Violet Fabric Dye but I also used Rit.

Sink and Dying Project
Sink and Dying Project

Accessorizing the Dying and Wrap

Google maps did not fail me as I traveled to Spirit Halloween to find accessories like green hair spray, gloves, eyeliner, hand buzzer, Bang! gun, and carnival makeup ($25+).  Be careful here since those stores are super expensive. I walked over to H.E.B. and found a travel sized baby powder ($.99 for setting the makeup), travel sized hair gel ($.50), and a mini sewing kit ($1.50).  You might also want white/black gloves.

When I returned to my dorm, my knee was blue so I wrapped it up and put ice on it first before beginning the dyeing process. First, bleach all dark colors like the black skirt and navy jacket. It takes a while and you might want some rubber gloves! When they are quite a bit lighter, like yellow, then follow the dyeing directions and dye the jacket and skirt violet purple. After the dyeing process, dry with a machine on high. You might have to dye them several times. It took me three dyes and dries before I got the desired color! Dye the shirt purple and the vest light green.  Note: you might need salt in the Dylon Intense Fabric Dye.

Finished Project after Dying
Finished Project after Dying

The Makeup.

Give yourself time. It took me almost two hours to do the makeup the first time because I wanted all of the makeup to dry completely. First, I put on ten layers of rigid collodion in the shape of the smile scars. Let each layer dry completely. Secondly, I put a little bit of liquid latex on the high corners of the smile and down around my lip. Tear little tiny pieces of super thin tissue paper and model it on your face on the liquid latex. Allow to dry completely and then add one more layer of liquid latex. Then once completely dry, add a little bit of spirit gum to just hold it all together. Allow to dry completely. Pull hair back and paint face and ears white; allow for holes around eyes. Then paint black around eyes with grease makeup and eyeliner. Take a paintbrush end and “scratch” little wrinkles in your forehead.

Do not put paint here. You want the paint to be peeled up naturally looking. Add red lipstick to lips and red grease paint to the inside of your tissue paper scars with a paintbrush. I squirted/flicked a little bit of water from my hands/fingers onto my face after all the makeup was applied and shook my head until I had the crazy drippy makeup look. Take mascara and put on eyelashes. This is important to do after the water drips so that mascara does not wash into eyes and burns you! Take baby powder or makeup finish and powder onto face to hold the makeup and seal it better. Smudging your red and black makeup just a little is okay since the Joker is supposed to look a little crazy… . I also painted my nails purple (since I owned that color).


Full Makeup with costume
Full Makeup with costume

The Hair

I gelled and pulled my hair over for a serious part, and then I sprayed it green. Work with hairspray and gel to get that crazy, curly, greasy look. I did put a little white makeup at my hairline for a widow’s peak.

To Tie a Tie

I bought a white tie ($1) from a guy a dorm room over and dyed it tan/gold and cut it short, sewed the bottom and then looked up a Youtube video on how to tie the tie!

Put it On

Pretty self-explanatory, but remember black shoes or heels (I had a pair of black and gold heels thus a gold tie), green or purple tights (I already had green and purple), and time to do the makeup right!

Total Joker Costume
Total Costume

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