How to Make a Homemade Temporary Tattoo Without Using Henna Powder

    by Andy Jackson

    About the Author

    Andy Jackson has been writing professionally since 2010. He is a certified personal trainer and yoga instructor in Cincinnati, Ohio. Jackson is also a lifestyle and weight management consultant whose work has appeared in various online publications. He holds a Bachelor of Science in kinesiology and health, and a Master of Science in sports studies from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.


    Temporary tattooing is a safe and risk-free way to experiment and express your personal style. The temporary tattoo stains the surface of your skin and wears off over a period of days, as you naturally shed dead skin cells. Henna is commonly used for temporary tattoos and comes in black, brown and red. If you would like to try other colors, or don’t want to use henna, you can try other substances that also stain the skin, such as products with food coloring.

    Things You'll Need

    • Corn starch
    • Water
    • Measuring cup
    • Small sauce pan
    • Spoon
    • Disposable plastic bowl
    • 2 packets unsweetened flavored drink mix
    • Soap
    • Loofah or exfoliating pads
    • Water color or oil paint brushes

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    Add 1/4 cup corn starch and 1/4 cup hot tap water to a small bowl. Mix until the corn starch completely dissolves.

    Empty two packets of unsweetened flavored drink mix into a disposable plastic bowl. Pour 1 cup of hot tap water over the drink mix and stir until it dissolves.

    Pour the cornstarch mixture into the drink mix. Stir until the mixture thickens. You now have a paint that you can use to tattoo your skin.

    Wash the tattoo area with soap and use a loofah or exfoliating pad to remove dead skin cells. The dye will adhere to your skin better.

    Paint the tattoo onto your skin with the paint brushes. Let the paint sit for at least one hour. Rinse with warm water and pat dry with a towel.

    • You can use multiple colors by mixing different colors in separate bowls.
    • Do not use bowls that you use for cooking or serving because the dye in the drink mix may permanently stain the bowl.


    • “Temporary Tattoos”; Erick Aveline et al; September 2001