Halloween-Inspired Beauty (Plus Bonus Nail Art by Jin Soon Choi)

halloween pumpkins

I prefer chic silver, grey and white pumpkins for Halloween, just because they go with my shoes better.


Happy Halloween! I love doing themed beauty roundups, so I thought it’d be fun to do one for some ghoulishy apropos products (along with an All Hallow’s Eve-inspired nail art bonus). Spikes, skulls, even a little Edgar Allan Poe? All the better to help you get your scare on.


goth vanity featuring boscia, kat von d, nars, nars and steven klein, paddywax, nirvana, peter thomas roth


Kat von D … anything

I’ve raved about Kat von D Tattoo Liner before — one of the best liquid liners and something I buy again and again. A super soft calligraphy-inspired brush that allows better control and prevents “skipping,” unlike marker liners; an inky black that lasts and lasts; the satisfying click of the air-tight cap that slows dry-out — what more do you want?

I also love the look of Kat von D’s black studded lipsticks, mainly for its cute packaging. The actual lipstick colors are perfect for experimenting, since they come in all sorts of daring shades like a glittery black or oxblood red, but being an eye makeup girl, not a lip girl, I can’t say that I know enough about the wear or pigmentation. I did just get a sample of her Lock It Foundation, though, so I’m looking forward to trying that.


Nars AUDACIOUS mascara

nars audacious mascara

Their latest mascara is appropriately a sexy, molded red applicator of sharp spikes that gives you outsized spider lashes if you wanted. I actually have to be careful when applying — that’s how sharp those spikes are! I’m not a spider lash girl (I have so few lashes, I’ve arguably already got spider lashes), but if I were, this would be my go-to mascara.


Too Cool For School “Za” Cleansing Line


too cool for school za line


I first discovered Too Cool For School (TCFS) while shopping in Myeong-dong, the beauty neighborhood of Seoul, a half dozen years ago. While a lot of K-beauty features cutesy graphics, this brand had a cool, artsy vibe that made it stand out. I loved the naming, the packaging, the display, the art, pretty much everything about it. But I didn’t know what its reputation was among Koreans — was it gimmicky, was it legit, was it for kids?

Now that TCFS is available Stateside at Sephora, and I’ve had a chance to play around with it, I have to say, it’s got some serious contenders in its lineup. One of its more promising collections is its “Za” cleansing line. (“Za” or “ja,” as its actually pronounced, means “sleep” in Korean.) I’m not sure why they chose a melting skull as its mascot (maybe something to do with the collection’s motto, “Take care of it while you have it” — LOL), but I’m excited to try their water-based “jelly” cleanser that removes heavy makeup without stripping skin.





K-beauty is often about what’s fun, innovative, and new, and all the bubbling masks out there are no exception. Sure, they make great Instagram posts and YouTube videos, but they’re also great for scaring the bejeezus out of your S.O. or unsuspecting niece. Or for dressing up as a bloated bichon frise.





paddywax edgar allan poe library candle


To truly get into the spirit of things, I’ll be lighting up a candle inspired by the king of literary fright, Edgar Allan Poe. No, it doesn’t smell like death or rotting corpses. It’s an intriguing mix of absinthe, cardamom, and sandalwood — strangely comforting for the man who made me forever terrified of ravens.


AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST, Swirling ghost Nail art by Jin Soon Choi


jinsoon halloween nail art

“Swirling Ghost” Halloween nail look from Jin Soon Choi, founder of the JINsoon Nail Lacquer line and JINsoon Hand & Foot Spas in NYC. Photo courtesy of JINsoon.


If I had any nail art talent whatsoever, I’d attempt this for my niece’s Halloween parade. Needless to say, I’ll satisfy myself with sharing this cool little how-to with my readers.

jinsoon halloween nail art

Step 1: Apply JINsoon Power Coat.

**Note: If you would like to create this design on each nail, do so one at a time, as the steps below have to be done while the polish wet!**

Step 2: Apply 2 coats of JINsoon Enflammee.

Step 3: While Enflammee is still wet apply a few dots of JINsoon Obsidian at random.

Step 4: Repeat Step 3 with JINsoon Doux.

Step 5: Using a striping brush, drag across all three shades in swirling motion to create the marble effect.

Wait for this to dry before applying a top coat so the look doesn’t smudge.

Step 6: Apply JINsoon Top Gloss to finish this look.


What are some of your favorite Halloween-inspired looks or products?



2 thoughts on “Halloween-Inspired Beauty (Plus Bonus Nail Art by Jin Soon Choi)

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