It's clear to us what Cindy Trusty should dress as this Halloween: The Miracle Worker.

We invited Trusty, the Oakdale-based owner of Cindy's Creative Celebrations (www.cindyscc.com), into our photo studio last week to give us doable last-minute Halloween ideas, even if our kids will be wearing snowsuits.

"The impact comes from the face," she says. Boy, does it. The award-winning face-painter and entertainer discovered her transformative gift just five years ago as a leader of her daughter Alexa's Girl Scout troop.

While it's scary how easy she makes it look, she created each of these designs in just three or four steps, using three colors. 

Choosing the right face paint is important

All face paints are not created equal. Face-painter Cindy Trusty recommends using professional, water-based makeup only.

"It's highly pigmented and made for use on the skin," she says. "Never use craft paint. It contains ingredients [that] ... can lead to allergic reactions. It's also much more difficult to use."

She likes brands such as Snazaroo, Paradise, Kryolan, Wolfe FX, Fantasy Worldwide, Ben Nye and Mehron. Ask for them at Twin Cities Magic & Costume in St. Paul (651-227-7888), NorCostCo in Plymouth (763-546-9644) and Dick Blick stores in Roseville, Edina and Minnetonka (1-800-828-4548).