How to Make a Joker Costume

The Joker is one of the most mysterious and intriguing of the numerous "Batman" villains. Follow these steps in order to capture his look for occasions like Halloween and costume parties.


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    Wears suits in his signature colors: purple and green. Though suits in these colors aren't common, they are more readily available in party supply stores such as Party City and online. If a trip to your local Party City is not a success, try or a similar site. (Look under Men's Clothing and Accessories in the subcategory "Suits and Sport Coats." From there you can choose specific colors, such as green or purple) In most cases; his shirt, suit jacket, gloves, and trousers are purple and his waistcoat and sometimes his tie are green.
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    Wear small pops of other colors, usually brown. The Joker's tie is brown (and sometimes an olive green), as are his shoes. Any brown tie and dress shoes will suffice for your representation, though if you're striving for perfection, consider looking through pictures from the movie or watching the movie with a watchful eye for wardrobe.
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    Get green hair. This is a simple effect to produce. During the Halloween season, Walmart carries an assortment of aerosol hair-dyes that wash out in various colors, including green. They usually cost between $3.00 and $7.00 a can.
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    Use a knife as the weapon of choice. The Joker carries a knife to torture his victims and supplies a different backstory each time he is witnessed holding the knife to someone's face. It is frowned upon to carry a knife around; however, there are multiple toy-weapons available at Party City and online. Mock weapons are also sold as children's toys in stores.
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    The Joker's makeup may be one of the most important features of his costume. The face paint, or "war paint" as it is called in "The Dark Knight", not only hides The Joker's true identity but enforces the image that Gotham's citizens have of him. Replications of his makeup are simple to create. First, appropriate the following: White face paint; black face paint, eyeshadow, or liquid eyeliner; and red face paint or lipstick. Coat your face from the top of your forehead to your chin in white face paint, also coating your ears. To follow Heath Ledger's Joker costume, smudge black face paint, liquid eyeliner, or eyeshadow heavily over your eyelids. There is no need for strict lines or boundaries; as long as your eyelids are coated and the edges look hazy, it'll work. For the lips, cover your lips in red lipstick and either run the red lipstick in a thick, vague line about an inch and a half past both corners of your mouth. The line should curve like the joker's demonic grin and blend a little bit into the white. To achieve the look, draw the lines on your cheeks and smudge them lightly with your fingers. Conversely, if you wish to look more like Jack Nicholson's Joker, lightly line your eyes with black liquid eyeliner. Don't get any in your waterline, keep the liner in a very thin line on the outside of your eyelid. Next, cover the area of your lips in red lipstick and very carefully extend the lines outward to recreate the shape of his very thin lips. Don't just draw thin lines, but extend the shape of your lips to make it seem like the corners are further apart and your lips are thinner. If you already have naturally very thin lips, this look is easier, and you only have to extend the corners of your mouth a slight bit with the red lipstick.
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    Both Jokers appear to have yellowed teeth. You'll find that, when applying the white face paint, your teeth naturally look more yellow when compared to the bright white.


  • Make sure your red lipstick is a little hard and rough and trace over your Lips and smile 3 times to make sure it's there.
  • Practice the line "Why so serious?" a few times, just to get it right. You may surprise yourself (and other people).
  • The Joker carried around "joker" cards from playing card decks. If you so desire, carry one around in the pocket of your suit.
  • It's not necessary to spend a lot of money on this costume. If you or a parent already has one of the clothing articles or the necessary makeup, don't hesitate to use what you've already got.
  • Though he sports the scars of a smile, Heath Ledger's Joker doesn't actually grin nearly as much as Jack Nicholson's does. Depending on which you choose to portray, you may want to show a stern, troubled look or a jocular yet sinister one.


  • Don't actually carry a knife in public. Bad idea.
  • Test products on a small portion of your skin before applying them to the area of your hair or face to avoid large-scale allergic reactions.

Things You'll Need

  • Purple and green attire
  • Brown dress shoes
  • White, black, and red face paint or makeup
  • Temporary green hair dye
  • Toy knife (optional)
  • Joker card (optional)

Article Info

Categories: Cartoon and Comic Character Costumes