Makeup Artist Transforms Herself Into a Canvas for 3D Art That Pops off the Skin

Body Art by Menal Khan

Many talented artists gravitate towards makeup for its power to temporarily transform the body into incredible illusions. The same goes for Toronto-based artist Menal Khan; she creates whimsical 3D illustrations on her body that appear to pop off her skin. Although she works in a variety of media, her body art has recently been featured in magazines like Seventeen and Teen Vogue for its cool trompe l'oeil effects.

One of her most striking works features a playful relationship between the object and its shadow. Using a myriad of different cosmetic products, Khan rendered a realistic paper plane flying across her arm with a shadow of a jet soaring underneath. She explains the meaning behind this decision in an Instagram post, “How others see you is not important. How you see yourself means everything.”

Other examples of Khan's body art showcase what kinds of detailed illustrations one can create with makeup—often in a self-referential way. For example, she often paints her makeup palettes on her hand, rendering even the tiniest of details, such as the glitter of eyeshadow and the reflection of the mirror.

Scroll down to see more makeup art by Khan, and follow the artist on Instagram to keep up to date with her latest projects.

Toronto-based artist Menal Khan creates amazing 3D body art using makeup.

Body Art by Menal Khan 3D Body Art 3D Body Art 3D Body Art 3D Body Art 3D Body Art Body Art by Menal Khan

Menal Khan: Website | Instagram

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by Menal Khan.

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Margherita Cole

Margherita Cole is a Contributing Writer at My Modern Met and illustrator based in Southern California. She holds a BA in Art History with a minor in Studio Art from Wofford College, and an MA in Illustration: Authorial Practice from Falmouth University in the UK. She wrote and illustrated an instructional art book about how to draw cartoons titled 'Cartooning Made Easy: Circle, Triangle, Square' that was published by Walter Foster in 2022.
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