When you are wearing makeup and you look scary, don’t be alarmed.
But when you’re not, that could be the beginning of your Halloween costume nightmare.
We all want to be part of a Halloween party, but it can be tricky to make sure everyone is wearing the right makeup, says Jennifer Zullo, a social worker and professor at the University of Southern California.
Zullos studies the effects of Halloween makeup on individuals.
“The best way to get a good sense of how people react to Halloween makeup is to ask them questions like, ‘do you think Halloween is scary?’ and ‘do people think you look scared?’
And if you find that they’re not necessarily going to think you’re scary, then they might be more likely to try to avoid it,” Zullis says.
For many, Halloween is a chance to escape the pressures of everyday life and make the most of the festivities.
But for others, it can lead to an intense feeling of anxiety and fear, she says.
“We know that people are more likely than not to wear makeup and that they feel anxious and scared about Halloween.
We know that they want to make themselves look scary,” she says, adding that they may feel more comfortable in masks or with masks that don’t contain eye shadow.
But not all people are scared of Halloween masks.
The fear is less about the appearance of makeup, and more about the idea that the person wearing the makeup may not be who they say they are.
That could be someone you’ve met in person, or even someone you have met online, Zulls says.
People with anxiety disorders and those with depression or other mental health issues are more at risk of wearing makeup, she adds.
“If you’re someone who has anxiety or depression, you probably feel that you don’t fit in to society and don’t belong in a normal society, so it’s kind of a self-fulfilling prophecy, because you’re trying to feel like you belong to a community that doesn’t allow you to be who you are,” Zulos says.
The same goes for people who have physical health conditions such as diabetes or hypertension.
People with these conditions are also at risk for makeup-related problems.
People who are fearful of Halloween might also be hesitant to wear Halloween makeup, because they are afraid they’ll scare someone else, Zulo says.
Some of the best ways to prevent Halloween makeup problems is to be aware of the effects on your body, she recommends.
“You should take your mask off and not put on your makeup at the same time,” ZULLO says.