Mad Like Alyce

I’ve got a migraine: Twenty One Pilots makeup tutorial

twenty one pilots migraine makeup

From the first moment I heard “Addict with a Pen” by Twenty One Pilots (my first TOP song), I was hooked. I cannot begin to express how much the lyrics speak to me. It is something so raw and beautiful to address the terrifying and incapacitating feelings that accompany mental illness and still be so insanely hopeful and optimistic.

(Looking for more on how I did the look? Scroll down!)

“Am I the only one I know
Waging my wars behind my face and above my throat
Shadows will scream that I’m alone
But I know, we’ve made it this far, kid.”

– Migraine, Twenty One Pilots

twenty one pilots migraine makeup 2

This look was inspired by the cover art for their self titled album, Twenty One Pilots, from which my favorite song, “Addict with a Pen,” originates.

TOP album

I realize that Migraine is on the Blurry Face album, but I really connected with the lyrics, and envisioned a bit of a mashup of the colors and artwork with the song lyrics:

“I am not as fine as I seem
Pardon, me for yelling and telling you green gardens
Are not what’s growing in my psyche, it’s a different me
A difficult beast feasting on burnt down trees
Freeze frame, please let me paint a mental picture portrait
Something you won’t forget, it’s all about my forehead
And how it is a door that hold’s back contents
That makes Pandora’s box contents look non-violent”

– Migraine, Twenty One Pilots

Honestly, I have a pile of sticky notes of ideas inspired by TOP songs, many of which I have had in the pile for well over a year… this one included. I hope to complete more ideas soon!

Migraine by Twenty One Pilots Makeup Tutorial

So, I’ve been a bit lazy (overworked, exhausted, stressed, take your pick) so I have been just trying to work on makeup looks without doing the full filmed tutorial. I seriously have to hand it to make up artists who post videos even once a week. Its so much work!

While it does make it easier for me, I don’t have a full on tutorial, but kind of have it outlined for you below.

Products used:

  • Mehron aqua paints in white, grey and black.
  • Nyx jumbo eye pencil in Milk.
  • Liquid Latex
  • Dixie cups, and cheap paintbrushes
  • Cream paint in colors of your choice. You can also use food coloring, which I did, however, this WILL dye your skin a bit. It came off within 24 hours, but I did need to wear makeup the next day since there was a faint hint from the magenta tears.
  • Vaseline, so you don’t rip out your eyelashes, which I will explain more below.
  • Wig from Rockstar wigs, Long Curly in Silver.


1. Start by basing out your face, neck, and shoulders in white. I did skip my lips since I planned on making them grey.

2. I next went in and worked on the most solid features, which were the lips, eyes, and eyebrows. On the lips, I started with grey paint, then used a very small detail brush to make brush strokes in black to outline them. I then used white to add very small hints of highlight.

3. The eyebrows were next, which i made large strokes to outline the outsides of the brow, similar to how you would normally, but extended the lines past the arch, then barely filled them in.

4. The eyes were lined with black on the top lid, and I placed a few “pin drops” extending to the inner eye. I then used black in the crease, starting in the middle of my eye at the apex of the crease to the outside of my eye, connecting it to the bottom lash line. Leave the bottom lash clean, since we will be adding tears later.

5. Outline your face with brush strokes. I started with grey first, then went back over with black so it would have some varied dimension. Finally, take that “sketching” down either side of your neck, along the back of your trapezius muscle (back of your shoulders), and along your collar bone. I also went over the top of these with white paint again, since the harsher strokes of white still stand out fairly well against the base coat.

6. Very gently add brush strokes along the sides of your nose, and add just the faintest shadowing below the nostril. I’m not sure how else to describe it, so check out the image below for reference.

7. Finally for the “drawn” part, I dry brushed a contour onto my cheeks using very light strokes. The result before adding the tears looked like this:

sketched face makeup

8. Ok guys, here is were we get into the nitty gritty. First of all, PLEASE be careful with products and tools you use around your eyes. They are kind of important. Secondly, protect your eyelashes on both top and bottom using vaseline. If you have a clean mascara spooly, you can use that to coat them, but just getting some vaseline on your fingers and rubbing it on them will do. Latex CAN and WILL rip out hairs, so never apply this to your eyebrows, eyelashes, etc. Not the look you are going for, I’d guarantee it.

You can also see more on this from where I got the idea of latex tears, which is from Glam & Gore’s Death Stranding makeup tutorial. Mykie is a goddess, so you should follow her anyway.

9. Mix your colors. Pour out the latex into the dixie cups – one for each color, and just a teaspoon to a tablespoon will be more than sufficient in each. Mix in the food coloring/cream paints until the latex is evenly mixed. Note that the latex will be a lot darker when it dries, so it does help to do a test swipe on the back of your hand to see what it will be once it dries.

10. VERY CAREFULLY trace your tears on. I recommend using fine pointed and cheap paintbrushes, because latex will ruin them. I actually used a toothpick to apply mine, but again BE CAREFUL around your eyes, seriously you guys. Draw the tear trails down, and continue to build them up until you have them as thick as you would like. Then, make sure to fill below your eye with the various colors so there is no white space between tear trails. When you cry for real, tears often pool in the eye before falling.

11. Allow to dry fully, which should only take a couple of minutes. You will know when it is starting to dry, because you will feel it…. it feels weird!

Add your wig, and below is the final result! Normal makeup remover will remove the latex, and I would recommend not to do this look before an event requiring photos for any reason, as the tears may stain your skin.

Be sure to follow me on Instagram @madlikealyce to see these looks as they are created! I usually have a story or two posted right as I complete the look, and I almost always get these pictures up on Instagram before cranking out the final post.

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Hi! I'm Alyce.
Welcome to my journey towards living a happier and healthier life while living with PTSD and chronic pain... and never letting it keep me from my passion for Halloween, cooking, and way too many DIY projects... all at the same time!

Costume & Makeup Tutorials


  • Finally, the last in my “sketched” look (for now). Thieve last few weeks have been absolutely insane, and im still processing. I’m going to have to set aside some time for another look this week, there is something so tranquil about turning yourself into a blank canvas in the most literal sense.
  • Theres nothing quite like painting yourself completely white to make you realize how yellow your teeth are getting. Time to cut back on the coffee! JK, that might actually kill me. #tissuetestfail #needsomewhitestrips #cresttotherescue #notanad #butyoucanpaymeanyway?
  • I sometimes can take well over 200 photos of various looks, just to make sure I get the right one... i don't pretend to be a photographer! Even with so many photos, I will often only post maybe 3-4, which makes me a little sad since I spend so much time on some of these! So here are a few more of my "Migraine" Twenty One Pilots inspired look. I managed to get quite a few shots of this look before adding the tears for the completed migraine look, and I really do love how it looks without any color.
  • "I'm just being dramatic
In fact
I'm only at it again
As an addict with a pen
Who's addicted to the wind
As it blows me back and forth
Mindless, spineless, and pretend
Of course I'll be here again
See you tomorrow
But it's the end of today"
- "Addict with a Pen," Twenty One Pilots
This song is hands down my absolute favorite. I can't decide if it is the lyrics alone, or haunting piano. It was this song that inspired my take on the cover art for their self titled album.
  • "I-I-I I've got a migraine
And my pain will range from up, down, and sideways."
- Twenty One Pilots
Something about the lyrics captures me on so many levels. From the literal chronic pain interpretation, to the deeper meaning of living with mental illness.... this idea hit me as such a powerful vision.
This look was created using @mehronmakeup  water activated paints for the white base and grey and black "sketching". Tears were created by adding food coloring to liquid latex. Wig is the the Long Curly in Silver from @ardawigs.
  • "Am I the only one I know
Waging my wars behind my face and above my throat
Shadows will scream that I'm alone"
-Migraine, Twenty One Pilots

This looks is one I have had planned for quite some time now, and I finally sat down and completed it last night! he inspiration is from the cover artwork for Twenty One Pilots' self titled album (I know these lyrics are not on this album) but my absolute favorite TOP song is, "Addict with a Pen." What is your favorite TOP song?

This look was created using @mehronmakeup  water activated paints for the white base and grey and black "sketching". Tears were created by adding food coloring to liquid latex. The idea for using the latex is from Glam and Gore's "Death Stranding" makeup tutorial, so go and see how Mykie did it! 
As a quick safety note, be VERY careful working this close to your eyes, and make sure to apply vaseline to your lashes to prevent the latex from sticking. Also note, food dyes can temporarily discolor skin, so don't try this before an important event ;)
  • I should be in bed, but instead I'm fighting sleep and fooling around on Photoshop. This is a mirrored version to complete a full face. I have my makeup out and ready for a new look, but have nothing left in the tank today, so here's my last Gwen Dylan... for now ;)
Also, I forget how asymmetrical our faces can be until you flip a photo, or in this case, mirror it. Even just flipping it looked so strange to me!
  • I’m having waaaayyyy to much fun with this one, and it’s just the makeup! I think I might have to start this cosplay this weekend... what’s a good material to use to make a fake shovel blade? I’m a nube when it comes to fabrication, so any and all advice is welcome!
  • You GUYS this might have moved to my favorite makeup of all time. Gwen Dylan, inspired by the cover of iZombie: Dead to the World. I think I might have to make this a full scale cosplay, what do you think?

The zombie half was created using @mehronmakeup water paints. Wig is from @ardawigs (I think it is the Magnum Long Classic in Titanium Blonde). Eyes were photoshopped to match the comic book cover.


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