Glitter Etiquette

What showgirl or boy doesn’t enjoy the extra bit of sparkle on their skin, or the twinkle of glitter as it’s tossed in the air? Yes, glitter can add that extra spark to your routine or look, but it can also be irritating and even dangerous if not treated properly. That’s why I decided to come up with a handy “Glitter Etiquette” outline to help keep the peace while still looking your shiniest!

Glitter Etiquette

  • Using a spray on glitter? Be sure to ask around to make sure no one has allergies. This is one I would have never thought of until I did a show with someone who was allergic to all smelly things from a bottle.
  • Do you pour glitter into your hand with lotion and then rub it on your body? Do that mixing over a garbage can to catch as many of the glitter flakes as possible. No matter how careful you are, some will still fall out of your hand, best to keep the mess minimal.
  • Using glitter during your act. Be sure to tell the producer! And have a back up plan for when a producer tells you no
  • Producers, when possible, put the heavily glittered numbers toward the end of an act to provide extra time for sweeping it off the stage. Alternatively, prepare the host to stall between the heavily glittered act and the next one. An unprepared performer could slip and fall on the floor. Or the glitter could stick all over the following performer’s costume and then follow that performer to their home and to a photoshoot (not that this has ever happened to me to the point where I’m still grumbling about it, not at all).
  • Clean up after yourself! You would think this would go without saying, but if there is a lot of glitter left behind in your wake, sweep up what you can. Use a wet cloth or take some tape and dab the floor with it. It’s considerate to the producer, and it’s considerate to the venue (especially if it isn’t a strictly burlesque theatre).

Now it’s hard to clean up after glitter. After all, it isn’t called the herpes of burlesque for nothing. And quite honestly, I like the afterglow of a bit of glitter on my skin the day after a show. But it can get problematic as a performer to have your costumes caked with the stuff, especially when it wasn’t your own glitter to begin with. A little thoughtfulness in it’s use can make for much smoother interactions with your fellow performers and producers.

Have you seen any glitter faux paus that I haven’t mentioned? Any tips for applying glitter to your skin? How do you keep your glitter mess down to a minimum? I’d love to hear from you!

P.S. A throwback photo of my time playing Egghead in Gorilla Tango Burlesque’s “Holy Bouncing Boobies: A Batman Burlesque.”

Liked it? Take a second to support phaedrablack on Patreon!


  1. Still so glad about the asking before you spray! This is SUPER important because sometimes those things get forgotten in all the information for a show. Thanks for not killing Mr J!


    1. And it was something that I wanted to include in this post, because I would have never thought of it before being in your show. So I’m sharing the knowledge. 😉


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *