Reindeer Face Painting: Holiday Fun Ideas

a woman with a reindeer face paint design
Kristin Olsson — 11 December 2018 —

Here is a super cute Christmas reindeer design that I have prepared especially for the holiday season!

The key to creating an animal design with a good placement is to look at the space you actually have available to paint on — it is not always necessary to fill the whole facial area with your design.

Sometimes, scaling down the size of the design, so that you can fit it in better with the features of your models face will give you a more correct and effective result. 😉

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Materials used:

Step 1: The Main Shape

First, I start by outlining the main shape of the design. If you are a confident painter you may find that you don´t need to do this, but I find it very helpful — especially when painting new designs.

For this reindeer face paint, it is important to place the eyes as far out on the sides as possible, as this is the way they are placed on a real deer.

Are you a beginner? Check out our Free Guide for Beginner Face Painter and learn where to start, what tools to buy and how to face paint many amazing popular designs! 😍

woman looking at the camera with a conture of a reindeer painted on her face

Step 2: The White Areas

To continue with my reindeer face paint, I then move on to painting the main white areas, which is the muzzle area, the eyes and the inside of the ears. As you can see, I am not too accurate at this stage, with the exception of the area over the eyes.

The placement of the eye area is quite important for the symmetry and shape of the design – but as you will go over this area with your one stroke in the next step you will be able to blend the colors a bit more then.

woman looking at the camera with a conture of a reindeer painted on her face and white paint on her nose, eyes and forehead
Tip: Check out our “7 Steps For Symmetrical Face Painting Designs” blog post for more tips and tricks to help you polish that skill!

Step 3: Coloring Your Deer Face Paint

Loading a ¾ inch angled brush, I proceed with painting the main shape of the deer. Note that I have the lightest color on the outside all the way.

I then fill in the missing gaps on the forehead with a reddish brown color as well as the ears. I load a round brush with a more neutral brown and paint some cute little antlers as well.

If you don’t have a different brown to use for this, don’t worry — you can use the same as you used on the rest of the head and it will still look great! 😉

woman looking at the camera with a unfinished reindeer face paint
Tip: Are you impressed by Kristin’s skills and want to set up a career in face painting too? Check out our free guide How to Become a Professional Face Painter and Get Paid.

Step 4: The Outline

For the black line work, I use a round brush #3. I vary the pressure I use in order to create those thin to thick lines, but try to keep them quite delicate so that the eye shape will pop more.

Over the white eyes, I use more pressure to create that distinct eye shape more prominent.

I have also added some cute eyelashes here — if you are painting this reindeer face paint on a boy you can skip this part.

woman looking at the camera with a shaded brown and white reindeer face paint
Tip: Did you know that Kristin Olsson became a world renown face painter and instructor in two short years? 😱😍🏆 She is now part of the International Face Painting School team, her designs are unique and her teaching skills are even better!
Check out more about Kristin the exclusive Interview: “Kristin Olsson: From Novice to Expert in Two Short Years“.

Step 5: Reindeer Face Paint Details

With a round brush #4, I add the characteristic white dots to the forehead. As you can see the dots and the curve of the eye shape are all leading the eye towards the center focal point between the eyes — this helps to give your reindeer face paint design a good flow and a balanced look.

woman looking at the camera with a shaded brown and white reindeer face paint with white spots on her forehead

👉 Be sure to get your access to the “Improve Your Linework in 3 Days” FREE Online Workshop!, you’ll get expert tips and training and it will give you a glimpse of what’s in store for you as a student. 😉

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Step 6: Shading for Your Deer Face Paint

You can leave your design like it is in the previous step — or, if you have time, you can add a little dry brushing to soften the black and put some gold glitter on in selected places and you have a super cute Christmas or Halloween deer makeup that is sure to impress your little customers!

a woman looking at the camera wearing a reindeer face paint design
Tip: Check out Your Favorite Christmas Ideas with Easy Tutorials for more holiday inspiration!


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Break out your kit! Show us your take on Kristin’s design below! 👇🎨🦌

 — Kristin Olsson

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