There is a quintessence of Chinese culture, called facial makeup. Facial makeup was evolved by mask at the earliest time. In ancient China, a mask was used to intimidate the enemy, while it was used to perform in stage afterward. The mask performance appeared in the Northern and Southern Dynasties. Then the facial makeup was taking the place of the mask for opera actors’ convenience. This was how the facial makeup evolved.

Facial Makeup
Facial Makeup

Different colors of facial makeup are representing different traits of characters. There are four varieties of characters in Chinese opera, sheng (male role), dan (female role), jing (painted face), chou (clown). In general, the role of jing has usually painted facial makeup.

The Main Colors of Facial Makeup

In that way, what does the facial makeup represent in different colors? The colors of different facial makeup represent different traits of characters. The main colors of facial makeup can divide into nine colors: red face, blackface, white face, blue face, green face, golden face, silver face, purple face, yellow face.

Red Face:

The red face’s traits of characters is the person that the body is fit and knows all the answers. These kinds of people are dedicated and decent. It is the opposite of blackface in Chinese opera and the opposite of a white face in daily life. People are usually using these words to represent a good person in daily life. The classic character of the red face is Guan Yu.

Red Face
Red Face

Black Face:

Blackface is a metaphor of the tenacious in people’s traits of characters. This kind of person is integrity, loyal, brave, impartial, and incorruptible. Or someone is rude and reckless. The classic characters of blackface are Bao Zheng, Zhang Fei, and so on.

Black Face
Black Face

White Face:

Whiteface has two types of people, the person is treacherous and the person is a hale and hearty old hero. The classic character of the white face is Cao Cao. While the white face represents a bad person in daily life.

White Face
White Face

Blue Face:

The blue face is the symbol of strong, sincere, and has the spirit of rebellion. Dou Ambassador is the representative personage of a blue face.

Blue Face
Blue Face

Green Face:

The green face is representing the traits of characters of valor, despotic, violent, and irritable. The representative personage of green faces mostly is greenwood heroes, just like Cheng Yaojin.

Green Face
Green Face

Golden Face:

The golden face is the simple one, it represents the supernatural beings. It expresses the power and royalty in Chinese opera, like Tathagata.

Golden Face
Golden Face

Silver Face:

Silver face and golden face are work in concert with each other. The silver face is representing evil and monsters that have supernatural power.

Silver Face
Silver Face

Purple Face:

The character of the purple face is resolute and steadfast, the trait is genuinely cool.

Purple Face
Purple Face

Yellow Face:

The traits of yellowface are brave, battle wise, atrocity, doughty, justice, and scheming.

Yellow Face
Yellow Face

Every color has its own characteristic, and it could express each actor’s trait so that audience can fully aware of the plot.

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Facial Makeup Custom Embroidered Patches No Minimum
Facial Makeup Custom Embroidered Patches No Minimum

Facial makeup is one of the transformational art in makeup art. The transformation of facial makeup is for expressing the content of Chinese opera more visually, accurately, and directly. Every sculpt and color of facial makeup is not existing in daily life, but it was rooted in life. It is an art that can manifest and exceed life, it can express the good wish deep inside in people’s hearts. The image of facial makeup is enjoyed popular support in the folk. This culture had four thousand years of history in China, it sedimentary deposits the cultural gene and cultural phenomenon during every historical period.

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