#DiaDeLosMuertos #Skulls #Halloween #DayoftheDead

1 Nov

Day of the Dead Make Up

October has been a horror filled, trashy, vampy, deathly bonanza at Tio Trash! It has been so much fun to celebrate my favorite month and Holiday of the year! If it were up to me, I would celebrate and dress for Halloween all year round! Since that isn’t an option for all of us, the one creepy dark trend we can always rely on at any time of the year is the SKULL! My favorite fashion print/accessory, the skull, happens to be a main stream favorite one can find and wear everywhere, we all know this! Originally a morbid and creepy symbol of rebellion, death and mayhem, the skull is now a fun, trendy piece of glamour in the fashion world. So to end our Halloween celebration, I want to tribute a staple and present some of my favorite “skull looks”!

Costume? I'd wear this Fancy Dress Ball skull costume as an evening gown!

Costume? I’d wear this Fancy Dress Ball skull costume as an evening gown!

To spice up these looks, I wanted to add the traditional Dia De Los Muertos make up. For those of you who do not know about this Mexican holiday, you likely recognize the sugar skull. Dia De Los Muertos, or in English, The Day of the Dead, is a Mexican Holiday celebrated on November 2. This is literally a celebration of the dead, the friends and family who have gone before us.

It’s a time to remember and celebrate their lives. To show honor to the dead, the people give ofrendas (offerings) by presenting items such as flowers, Sugar Skulls, foods + drinks, candles, photos, etc. to an alter, and in many cases this is done at the grave of those whose lives are being celebrated.

Day of the Dead Make Up

Day of the Dead, Sugar Skull, Make Up.

The Sugar Skull, is the iconic, ornate and colorful skull associated with Dia De Los Muertos. Sugar Skulls were originally made of actual sugar, and still are, but have become a nationally loved image splattered all over our modern day fashions, accessories and amenities. A current hot look in the MUA community, is a beautiful Sugar Skull face. There are thousands of ways to create this look using different colors and styles.

At this particular Tio Trash shoot, I was left with no make up artist and I had to brave the challenge myself! After about 15 YouTube tutorials, some tips from an MUA friend, and a round of practice, I accepted the challenge. Lucky for me, model Angela, is a gorgeous girl who can rock any look, so despite my very amateur make up attempts. I felt pretty good about the final result, I think I captured the Dia De Los Muertos elements, but by no means should you compare my work to the pros!

Day of the Dead Make Up

I wanted to create a variety of styles to show the versatility in “skull wear”, its for everybody.  The first look I assembled, will satisfy the “hippie/boho” style in all of us; feathers, leathers, Native American patterns, turquoise, etc. Starting with a Native print skull tank from Urban Outfitters, I combined layers of turquoise, stones and earthy jewelry, cranberry velvet leggings and a calico skull backpack (from Target) to complete this look.

Day of the Dead Make Up

Skull backpack from Target.

 This Target backpack is a classic example of Sugar Skulls being printed on everyday items. 

Day of the Dead Make Up

Awww, she’s too cute to look dead!

Add earthy brown combats to the look, and bam, Native American / hippie chick rocks the SKULL!

I wanted to include a look  stuffed with super trendy staples. Midi skirts, ankle boot wedges, and crop tops are a hyper trendy combo, especially when skulls are added to the mix.

Day of the Dead Make Up

Angela models trend perfection with these red hot elements. The Jeffrey knock offs (Agaci) are studded with mini metal skulls and studs. H&M is responsible for this adorable midi skirt featuring the Sugar Skull print, yet again. I topped this look off with a studded crop top and some freaky fabulous jewelry from Atomic Lace.

Day of the Dead Make Up

“Bleeding Heart Necklace”, Atomic Lace – “Glitter Cross Earrings”, Atomic Lace 

Part of perfecting the Dia De Los Muertos make up is the hair and accessories. Most of the Sugar Skull make up looks include a crown of roses. Because I went for a dark and creepy portrayal of this look, a crown of black roses and a few plastic spiders really brought it together.

Day of the Dead Make Up

The perfect balance of beauty and death is essential to perfecting this look.

For those of us with corporate jobs full of fashion snobs, bring your skulls to the office can be a challenge! To wear your skulls to work while staying within the dress code, choose a simple “skull piece” i.e. a tank top/blouse and pair it with very plain and classic staple pieces like black pants and a solid cardigan or blazer.

How to bring your skulls to work!

How to bring your skulls to work!

 The skull image has become so main stream, there is no reason to keep it out of the workplace by putting together a professional look with some edge.

Day of the Dead Make Up

Corporate Skulls.

This particular outfit is likely a little bit too “sexy” for an office job, however you can sneak a skull tank like this one under a work skirt and blazer and make it happen! Replace the thigh high stockings with tights, and this would be a good look as well.

Day of the Dead Make Up

I personally love to jazz up my boring work wear with costume jewelry and glorious tranny accessories. A bling covered skull bracelet or ring is a great way to add a skull to a simple work outfit if you are feeling less brave.

Day of the Dead Make Up

A subtle skull print is so much more fun under a blazer than a solid colored blouse! Don’t forget about other accessories like scarves and headbands. A solid sweater or suit with a neon skull scarf or skull headband is another fun way to bear your skulls at work.

And lastly, for my favorite activity of all, the Thrift Store Challenge!

Day of the Dead Make Up

For a fun Dia De Los Muertos “costume”, I searched the  thrift stores of Aurora, IL, knowing I would be gifted with the perfect outfit. This vintage blouse displays a traditional Mexican look reflecting the cultural elements and colors of this celebration. To make it sexy and youthful I paired it with a red mini skirt and knee high leather boots. A leather vintage belt and a red rose for her hair were the perfect accessories. While this may not be a “day look” for your everyday life, it was a cute and very inexpensive way to create a Day of the Dead costume for Halloween or a Day of the Dead celebration or fair.

Day of the Dead Make Up

Besides the beautiful art, colors, and rich culture of Dia De Los Muertos traditions, I think this is a wonderful holiday to remember the loved ones in our lives that have passed. Even thought this holiday has a reputation for being scary or creepy, it is actually quite the opposite. Celebrating a life that was once lived on Earth and now may continue in another place or form is a beautiful idea to acknowledge. It brings us closer to our family and friends to reflect on the good things that our loved ones brought to the human life we knew them in. If anything, it is much more of a celebration of life than it is of death and reminds us that life is short, but through memory and spirit, a part of us can live forever in what we leave behind.

I encourage everybody to look into local Day of the Dead celebrations in your home towns and cities and immerse yourselves in the beautiful experience that it is.

Thank You

Model: Angela H.

A million thank you’s to the beautiful model, Angela H. Not only did she trust me with painting her face, but she killed every look! (No pun intended). My biggest challenge was trying to make somebody so adorable and lively look creepy and dead! Thank you for your wonderful work and your trust in me! To learn more about Angela, check her out on the “Meet the Models” page!

Contributors: Atomic Lace 

So much love for Laura of Atomic Lace for giving me the greatest creepy couture I have seen anywhere! The bleeding hearts, skulls, crosses and owls from her glitter lines are PERFECTION and I could not have perfected these looks without her magic touch! Make sure to check her out!


This has been a super busy and super wonderful month for Tio Trash. I will not be able to do as many photo shoots for awhile so I wanted to end photo shoot season with a BANG! I want to thank all of my beautiful models, my kick ass MUAs, guest photographers and contributors for all of the beautiful art and memories we have made together this far!

Thank you to my readers and fans, I live to please you all and would love to hear from you about what you would like to see more of on Tio Trash.

Stay tuned to Tio Trash for weekly fashion articles, updates and reviews, and get ready for a bigger and better than ever photo shoot season after the Winter months have melted away.

Stay Beautiful, Stay Trashy!




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