Oh, don't pretend like you don't have one!
I was five years old when Ghostbusters was released in theaters in 1984. It wasn’t until my
next-door neighbors, the lovely Dambrauskas family, bought it on VHS the next
year and invited me over, assuring me it wasn’t scary, that I
Well, I watched maybe the first 10 or 15 minutes, to be
accurate. That’s because as soon as I saw the non-little-old-lady form of the
library ghost, I was like, “Yep, see you guys later, thanks for the trauma,”
I don’t think I actually saw the whole thing until I was in
my twenties, much to the dismay of every guy I dated up to that point. So many guys have told me that Bill Murray’s Peter Venkman was their hero--some dressed as a Ghostbuster for
Halloween as a kid--or that Sigourney Weaver as Dana Barrett was their first
I wish I’d known that earlier in my life; I might have been
more confident as a frizzy-haired brunette cellist. I can’t really call myself
a cellist anymore--the only thing I can play from memory is “Canon in D,”
poorly--but I’m definitely still a frizzy-haired brunette. (Granted, my hair is
kind of auburn right now, but my overgrown roots are definitely brunette.)
And at no point in Ghostbusters
is Sigourney’s hair more luxuriously frizzy than when she’s possessed by Zuul,
Gatekeeper of Gozer.
Oh, but there’s so much more to being possessed by a Terror
Dog than curls!
There’s sensually standing in a doorway in a shimmery orange
dress in anticipation of Rick Moranis as Louis Tully who’s possessed by Vinz
Clortho, the Keymaster.
Then there’s the makeup. Sigourney, give us a good look at your makeup, please.
So I headed over to my friend Kristina’s apartment to give
the look a whirl, partly for the better lighting, partly because she has a
But before I did, I washed, conditioned and moussed my hair,
blow-drying it upside-down while scrunching to try to coax as much volume and
curl as I could.
To get a more controlled, perm-esque curl, I used a skinny
little half-inch curling iron and re-curled the sections of my hair as they
naturally separate into curls and waves. This included curling my long bangs,
which was a first for me.
You’ll see how the hair came out later, but for now I
clipped the front back to keep it out of my face while I did my makeup.
I started out with the basics: primer, foundation, concealer
and a little brow powder. Go ahead and use your personal faves. You do you.
Zuul’s cheekbones are super-contoured. I normally wouldn’t
choose a shimmering medium brown for an everyday contour job, but because this
is a demon possession, it made sense. I mean, duh, right? (Also, a lot more
shimmer is coming.)
So I did the whole sucking-in-my-cheeks thing and heavy-handedly
applied Treasure from the Pacifica Solar Palette in a slight curve at the
There’s a little bit of shimmery peach on the apples of her
cheeks, so I used Kat Von D Everlasting Face Shaper Blush in Wish.
Next, I used the lightest shade from the Maybelline Expert
Wear Rose Lights eyeshadow palette, a pearlescent off-white, as the base color
all over my lids--all the way up to the brow, as well as under my eyes along
the orbital bone, as a highlighter.
Next, up is silvery-gray eyeshadow. I used Sephora Colorful
eyeshadow in Winter in London No 58, a shimmery medium gray that allows you to
build color intensity with a lot of control.
I applied it on my lids, up to and including the crease, and
closely surrounded my entire eye.
Next, I used a darker and less-shimmery gray shadow, Face
Stockholm Pearl Eyeshadow in 6, along my top lash line, covering the lower
third of my lid, and creating a wing up to the outer edge of my brow.
I then had to reapply my left shadow wing because Igby
jumped up and licked it off.
Zuul’s eyeliner isn’t super-clean, but it’s not full-on
smoky, either. I used Essence I Heart Smokey Jumbo Eye Pencil in Ultra Black,
even though that spelling of smoky annoys
me to the core. I tight-lined and regular-lined both the top and bottom.
I added mascara after this. Your favorite formula in black
Zuul’s face is covered in silvery-beige shimmer; it’s almost
downright metallic in some light. To achieve this effect without going
straight-up Tin Man, I used Inglot Body Pigment Powder in 03.
I applied it generously with a blush brush, trying to avoid
getting it in my hair but failing.
My last makeup step was a pearlescent, pale bronze lipstick
like the one Zuul is going to get all over Vinz Clortho, Maybelline ColorSensational
lip color in Bronze Beam.
Then I took my hair out of the clip and embraced curly
Time to get in the shimmery orange dress!
My mother has been
making my Halloween costumes all my life, and she made this dress on short
notice, using a pattern we found on The Patchwork
I trusted her gut when she chose a slightly different type
of fabric and didn’t elasticize the waist; we just went with a sash instead,
because an elasticized waist can make busty ladies look more short-waisted.
(The woman has a BFA in fashion design from Pratt, for heaven’s sake; she can
do what she wants.)
She made it with an extra-wide boatneck so I could wear it
off one shoulder, and she based the measurements on her own since we’re built
very similarly and because she lives 1,300 miles away and I couldn’t find my
tape measure when she was getting started.
All in all, it took her about four hours, so if you can sew,
you could totally do this between now and Thursday. Thanks, Mom!
Once you’re dressed, try to stand in doorways or lie on beds
for the rest of the night.
By the way, there’s art hanging in Kristina’s apartment that
I’m pretty sure bridges the themes of Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters II. Look at
What's the most shimmery costume you've ever done for Halloween? Ever do an '80s movie costume? Why doesn't Rick Moranis get a cooler outfit when he's possessed? That seems unfair.