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Makeup Brushes

How to Do Stage Makeup for Dancers

To help your child shine on stage, we highly recommend considering wearing makeup.

Makeup is specifically designed to be visible from the audience under bright stage lights. It helps to:

  • Enhance facial features: Stage makeup can define your child's eyes, brows, and cheekbones, making their expressions more easily seen from afar.

  • Create a polished look: A touch of stage makeup adds a professional touch to your child's recital costume.

  • Boost confidence: Many dancers feel more confident and ready to perform their best when they feel stage-ready.


We understand that makeup choices are personal. Here at Footnotes Dance, we are happy to provide recommendations for age-appropriate makeup application techniques below.  

Preschool aged children 

The key to doing children’s makeup is to use natural colors. The child shouldn’t look “made up” with loud colours; rather, the makeup should make her features stand out from far away. Makeup for children is meant to emphasize features, not exaggerate them.


Children, Teen, Adult

As children mature their makeup should reflect their age and become stronger and heavier dependant on age. Following the basic model below the make up application follows the same principals however should be darker. 


Using a makeup sponge, apply foundation in a color that matches the child’s skin tone. Use more foundation than you would for “street” makeup. Blend the foundation at the jawline. Dust on lightweight, slightly shimmery powder so the makeup will stay put onstage. Liquid or a loose compact foundation

Eye Shadows

Use a cream/ivory shadow on the lids – Brown eye shadows in different grades are ideas. A light, medium and dark brown. Choose a relatively muted colours — too bright and the child will look garish. Finish the eyeshadow with a dusting of powder to hold the colour. Use a cream blush in a peach or pale pink with shimmery tones to highlight the cheekbones. Blend into the foundation.


Applying Lipstick

Begin by lining the lips with a red lipliner pencil, then fill them in with red lipstick. Avoid bright reds, as these can be too bright for children. A deep but strong blood red suits most skin tones

Practice beforehand: Don't wait until the day of the pictures and/or recital to try out the look for the first time. Do a trial run beforehand so you can make sure you have the technique down and your dancer is comfortable with the products.

Tutorials by Age Range 

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