As Halloween approaches, it’s time to start thinking of what you want to dress up as.
Year on year, DC Comics’ Poison Ivy is a popular choice, as you can feel ‘dressy’ as well as being in costume.
The femme fatale is one of Batman’s long-term nemeses, using the power of nature to protect wildlife and plants (albeit not always in a law-abiding fashion).
Having been portrayed by esteemed actresses like Uma Thurman, there’s plenty of inspiration for a Poison Ivy costume.
If you’re planning on a DIY ensemble this Halloween – rather than buying a standard one from the shop – here are our top tips and outfit ideas.
In some iterations of the Batman films and comics, Poison Ivy is shown with green skin.
If you want to recreate that – and aren’t going to a party where the host has white furniture – the most effective way to do so is with body paint.
Although you can buy face and body paint from most costume shops, for a result that’s more pigmented and with less chance of transfer you should look to a professional paint.
This one from Kryolan is used by those in showbiz, favoured for its high opacity. Just apply with a damp sponge.
Bodysuits and tights
If you’d rather not be transferring green paint onto everyone you hug, you could opt for a bodysuit or green tights.
Some depictions of Poison Ivy show her with white skin and wearing green stockings or pantyhose, which can be bought from costume shops.
Alternatively you could wear a unitard like this from Boohoo, either under your clothes or as the outfit’s focal point.
Poison Ivy’s red hair is one of her most recognisable features. If you’re not blessed with locks like hers, though, there are some great wigs on the market.
For £20.99, you can get this top-rated synthetic red wig from Amazon that can be styled and cut to your specifications.
Remember to brush some dry shampoo through the wig before you wear it for the first time, as this will make it look less shiny and unnatural.
Hair colour spray
Hair chalks and colour sprays aren’t just something of school discos gone by. As long as they’re applied correctly they can be a simple and effective temporary colour method.
A red colour spray from Claire’s Accessories costs just £3, lasting until you shampoo your hair. Even better, this one glows under UV light – perfect for a club.
Style your hair before you spray, using a face shield or some paper/cardboard to ensure no colour transfers to your face or body.
The type of makeup you go for will depend on whether you’ve used body paint or not, but this is a costume that lends itself well to gems and embellishments.
Green eyeshadow is a must (use a darker shade than your face paint if you’re wearing it), and you can buy chic green lipsticks that are anything but costume-like. Although pricey at £35, Gucci’s matte lipstick in the shade 704 is a favourite.
Shrine’s face jewels are easily applied can cost just £3, but will also help your costume stand out.
Poison Ivy is depicted covered in the leaves of her namesake plant, which means you can have lots of fun making your own foliage crown.
You can buy wire rings for flower crowns at craft shops or online, or make your own using wire (ensuring there are no sharp edges that might hurt you).
From there, wrap your ivy – real or artificial, just don’t go for the poison variety in real life – around the wire and secure with tape or glue.
The clothes you wear are completely up to you, but you should opt for rich green hues and err on the side of sultry a la Ms Ivy herself.
To level up your costume, Hobbycraft sells artificial ivy garlands which you can attach to your outfit. You don’t need to be a sewing pro, simply use a micro stitch gun like this to quickly affix each leaf.
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