Maintaining a look as flashy and dramatic as goth or other alternative styles can take a fair bit of time, a toll on your skin and hair, and a lot of money. But it doesn’t have to! Herein, we’ve compiled some basic must-haves to live your best spooky glam life and save you time, frustration and cashdollar.

Read more: 5 alt beauty gurus whose looks you’ll want to steal

1. Setting spray


Keep it together all day (and all night). �� // ��: @takashimayasc #UrbanDecay

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This is a given, and while most Instagram beauty gurus have tuned the world into this trick for keeping your makeup on your face, its use has not always been such widespread knowledge. This one especially goes out to makeup-wearing bands who can’t suss why their black eyeliner ends up halfway down their cheeks by mid-set. You don’t have to live this way! Invest in some setting spray; trust me. I’m not going to guarantee that your face will stay on through an entire outdoor festival because of this, but it’s almost certain to make it through your set.

2. The perfect lip color for you

Black and “corpse nude” lipsticks are striking and en trend, but not necessarily the look for everyone. For instance, I love a good dead girl lip, but when I blush, it starts to look almost yellow. If you’re wearing black lipstick, it’s probably best to have whitened your teeth recently. And then, of course, there’s the conundrum of finding your perfect red, which is a long process of trial and error. Point is: There is no one-size-fits-all dramatic lip color. What looks stunning on a person of color might not necessarily work for the pasty-palest, and that’s fine! Be creative; don’t confine yourself to a “traditional” look if it doesn’t work for you. Do you.

3. I M A G I N A T I O N

Now, having given you the spiel about not sticking to traditional trends that don’t work for you, I’m going to take it all back and encourage experimentation to make anything you damn well please work for you. Cherry red lipstick, for instance, makes me look like Pennywise The Clown. However, because I don’t have the funds to justify tossing out makeup, I’ve found ways to make what I have work. For instance, I know that if I want to achieve a “vampiric” look, I need a darker red, so instead of giving up on that bright red I paid for, I use black lipstick with it to create an ombre effect so that I scare small children rather than get invited to make balloon animals at their birthday parties.

4. An immortality-promoting face routine

Lush Dark Angels

Thank you, Lush Cosmetics, for understanding the deep need for skin care items called “Dark Angels” and “Prince Of Darkness” and providing them to us. Jokes aside, the names aren’t the only great things about those products. Angels is a terrific exfoliant. And Prince is a fantastic moisturizer. And if you like your coffee black just like your metal, Lush also has a coffee face mask.

5. This natural face scrub

If you’re looking for a natural cleanser that’s less pricey, the grocery store is a good place to look. It’s Black Friday changed my life with this homemade scrub. All it takes are a few cheap, easily accessible ingredients that also happen to be edible. Remove the lemon juice and parsley from the recipe to avoid skin-lightening. For a vegan alternative, you can use pure maple syrup in place of honey.