Halloween Tutorial: Danny Zuko From 'Grease'

Danny Zuko is the Holy Grail of Halloween costumes: both sexy and warm.
Publish date:
October 21, 2014
short hair, lush, elf, Manic Panic, perricone md, xohalloween, grease, john travolta

Today I have the perfect Halloween costume for all you short-haired girls out there. It's fast and easy to do, and uses products and clothes that you probably already own. I also like that it's sort of sexy in its own way without being revealing in the slightest. (I promise, you'll be warm in this costume.)

Without any further ado, here's how you can be John Travolta as Danny Zuko in Grease this Halloween.

You'll Need:

  • Eyebrow powder/gel
  • Bronzer
  • Strong hair pomade
  • Fine-tooth comb
  • White T-shirt, black skinny jeans, black leather jacket

First, I did my best to make my face a little more masculine.

This was very simple. I thickened my eyebrows with my e.l.f. Studio Eyebrow Kit (without emphasizing the arch--you want the eyebrows to be straight across). Then I used my fingers to blend Perricone MD No Bronzer Bronzer under my cheekbones and jawline to emphasize my bone structure. I also dabbed a little bit of bronzer in the middle of my chin for that Travolta chin dimple (or "butt chin," if you will). And that's it for the face!

Next is the hair, which can be broken down into three simple steps.

Start by wetting hair completely and slathering a generous helping of pomade through it. I used my favorite, Lush Dirty Hair Cream. And speaking of dirty hair, this works better with that, as opposed to just-washed. Then take a fine-tooth comb and brush your hair back. The sides should go back and upwards.

Using the comb and/or your fingers, take the entire front middle section of your hair and tease it upwards and back. I like to think of this as turning that section into a little hill. You could also imagine you're rolling the section of hair into a large curler away from your face (and if it helps, don't be afraid to use an actual hair curler to set this). Once you have your hair swoop to your liking, perhaps with a stray hair or curl falling onto your forehead, feel free to set the whole thing with hairspray.

To finish off the costume, wear black skinny jeans, a white T-shirt, and a black leather jacket.

It also wouldn’t hurt to recruit a curly blonde to go with you as Sandy.

If you have very light-colored hair, you may want to consider picking up some Manic Panic Dyehard Hair Color Styling Gel to make your hair temporarily black. Or you could follow this exact tutorial, but switch out the leather jacket for a red one and go as James Dean. This tutorial is also easily tweaked for Elvis Presley (just wear a sequined jumpsuit instead), The Outsiders (perfect if you're going with a group), or just as a generic greaser costume. Options!

I hope this gives you some inspiration for your Halloween costume, and maybe even for a casual weekend look when you're not feeling the usual red lipstick. Androgyny is hot.

  • Were you obsessed with the movie Grease as a kid?
  • Did you watch it as an adult and go, Whoa, I can't believe my parents let me watch that.

Photos by Joshua Kirby