Makeup for night

How to Make Gold Leaf Makeup

Jane Bertin
By Jane Bertin. Updated: October 16, 2020
How to Make Gold Leaf Makeup

There are few eras as decadent and elegant as Rococo, the glamorous Gilded Age or the Roaring Twenties with its shimmering Art Déco - fashion designers and celebrities know it, and they return to them whenever they can. What do they all have in common? Gold.

If gold makeup is not quite enough for you, in this OneHowTo article we will show you how to make gold leaf makeup. You'll create a stunning look that is actually very easy to do!

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  1. What is gold leaf?
  2. Choose a look
  3. How to make gold leaf makeup
  4. How to wear gold leaf makeup
  5. Other ways to make gold leaf makeup

What is gold leaf?

Have you ever gone to your local arts and crafts shop? You will have noticed that they sell sparkling sheets of gold leaf. Gold leaf has been used for art throughout history: it's made by hammering real gold into very thin, malleable sheets. It's used to gild surfaces, from letters in ancient manuscripts to fancy furniture.

The gold leaf in stores might be real or imitation. Good news: you can use both to create this amazing look. Real gold will not affect your skin, but imitation leaf is cheaper and not so easy to crack.

How to Make Gold Leaf Makeup - What is gold leaf?

Choose a look

Once you've picked your sheets of gold leaf (they can be easily found online), design your look. Gold leaf can be applied anywhere, in any shape you want: you can gild your eyelids for a stately night look, or try other shapes - perhaps a lightning bolt, a la Ziggy Stardust.

Gold leaf makeup creates solid shapes, and it's not blended. Any look you create will necessarily be bold: you might as well make a statement. Since you want everyone's attention to be focused on the gold, keep the rest of your makeup understated. Go for a natural glow with a soft pink or bronze blush that fits your skin tone.

How to Make Gold Leaf Makeup - Choose a look

How to make gold leaf makeup

Gold leaf is very easy to use! Follow us through the steps:

  • Make sure your hands are clean.
  • If you're using imitation gold, test it for allergies. Try using a small patch and wait to see if there's any reaction. If there isn't, go ahead.
  • Take a sheet of gold leaf foil and cut it with scissors into your chosen shape. Try it on by holding it against your skin, and modify the shape accordingly.
  • Gold leaf foil sheets are self-adhesive. Follow the instructions on the pack and stick the sheet carefully to your skin. Hold it there for a while to make sure it holds up properly.
  • Once it's been set, polish the edges with a makeup brush.

How to wear gold leaf makeup

The only limit to this kind of makeup is your creativity!

On skin

The easiest way to wear gold leaf makeup is to apply it on your eyelids as a substitute for eyeshadow. If you do that, remember to use mascara and to fill in your brows to frame it properly!

You can combine gold leaf with rose gold, brown or black eyeshadow: it looks especially stunning with a smoky eye look. For even more effect, line your upper and lower lashlines with kohl, or do a winged eyeliner. Try applying light sparkling eyeshadow to the inner corners of your eyes to illuminate your look.

You can also turn the sheet into gold specks by cutting it into very small pieces. Apply them with tweezers, and fix them with vaseline, natural oils, or makeup adhesive. And why not try eye jewels?

On hair and nails

One of the advantages of making gold leaf make up is that you can apply it anywhere. You can gild your hair accessories, or sprinkle flecks on your updo, loose hair, or hair part. Remember to set it with hairspray!

For a more modest look that you can even wear to your office, you can use gold leaf to decorate your nails: combine it with your favorite color or wear it alone! Apply your favorite shape and fix it with a coat of transparent polish on top.

On lips

Yes, you can also wear gold leaf on your lips! However, make sure to check whether your gold leaf sheet is edible. Use the same process as with other parts and fix with lip gloss or vaseline.

How to Make Gold Leaf Makeup - How to wear gold leaf makeup

Other ways to make gold leaf makeup

If you can't find gold leaf foil, or prefer to try other methods, there are many other ways to get the gilded look.

  • Gold pigment: Mix a dash of gold powder with makeup primer and adhesive. Voilà!
  • Gold eyeliner: If the tip is hard enough, you can use it to draw any shape.
  • Gold glitter: Set it with glitter glue.

You can combine these methods to look even more sparkling. However, don't gild yourself all over if you're not dressing up for a fancy dress party!

How to Make Gold Leaf Makeup - Other ways to make gold leaf makeup

If you want to read similar articles to How to Make Gold Leaf Makeup, we recommend you visit our Beauty & Personal Care category.

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How to Make Gold Leaf Makeup