Grayscale Makeup

I know, I know!  I’m several months early for Halloween, but I couldn’t help myself.  I felt the makeup fairy tap me with her wand, so I got to working.  Here’s a look I did to mimic a black & white photo without it actually being a black & white photo.  It’s all makeup!  I took pics with my hands in view to purposely show that it’s makeup and not a black & white photo. I used Ben Nye Creme Colors for this look.  Eyeshadows used were from a holiday Tarte palette that came out a few years ago. I don’t think I did too bad my 1st time, but I will definitely practice this look again in the future so that I can improve my application technique.

NOTE: When painting your entire face, it’s very important to add dimension to it by highlighting and shading. Merely putting paint on your face would look like just that…paint on your face. However, when you add shading, it turns your face from being flat to more 3D (like our real faces).






Ben Nye Creme Color in Grey (all over face, neck, and ears)
Ben Nye Creme Color in White (to highlight center of face)
Ben Nye Neutral Set (to set everything)
Dark Gray Matte Eyeshadow (to contour)

NYX Jumbo Pencil in Milk (as a base)
Light Gray Matte Eyeshadow (crease)
Dark Gray Matte Eyeshadow (to deepen crease)
Sparkly Silver Eyeshadow (lid)
ELF Cream Eyeliner in Black
Covergirl Lash Blast Mascara

Dark Gray Matte Eyeshadow
MAC Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Engraved
Ben Nye Creme Color in White (to clean up brows)

Ben Nye Creme Color in Grey (all over lips)
MAC Powerpoint Eye Pencil in Engraved (to line the lips and slightly blend into lips)
Sparkly Silver Eyeshadow (dabbed in the center of lips)

8 Responses to Grayscale Makeup

  1. nix08 says:

    That is soooo neat! Great job:)

  2. Rose says:

    Girl you are crazy talented! Love it!

  3. NessaNessa says:

    Love this. I remember when you first began dabbling in makeup. You have really become a talented artist. Wishing you the best on this blog!!

    When I first saw your siggy ‘over there’, I thought the results were from a gray scale effect from an app on your phone.

  4. BK Bombshell says:

    Your makeup is amazing! I was sure it was a b&W photo until I read the caption. I don’t know that I’d ever need to do this but I’d love to try it anyway just because it’s so unique.

  5. chelsea says:

    Amazing! I love your blog btw, see you at #crossfit 🙂

  6. This is so freaking cool.

    Once I was watching RuPaul’s Drag Race and one of the contestants did a full-body look like this. It was so surreal.

    I think my favorite thing is if you look at the very very veryyy inside of your ear, you can still see some of your skin color.
    That little bit of color, even more so than your hand freaks me out LOL.

    I do have a question though, how do you know exactly how to adjust the tones and shades to mimic the light on the planes of your face? Is it just from having a good understanding of how light works, or do you use a reference photo of your face?

    • Ashley says:

      I thought that figuring out the lighting and shading of the gray would be difficult, but it honestly wasn’t! The only thing I needed to do was find a basic gray that wasn’t too light or too dark, something in the middle since that’s more than likely where my natural skin color falls when considering the range of human skin tones. After finding a medium gray, I used the white cream color to highlight my face; I’d pack it on until I got the desired result. When shading, I used a dark gray eyeshadow to contour my face. Before doing the look, I did look at a Black & White photo of myself from my wedding, but the gray in my skin in the photo was actually much lighter than what I could pull off using gray makeup. I hope that answers your question!

  7. Shey says:

    That is so cool!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *