Pro Wrestling's 20 Coolest Face Painted Wrestlers Ever.
Hey Fellow Bleachers! Welcome to my latest article.
Although not used that much any more, face paint used to be a staple of professional wrestling.
Whether used to enhance a wrestler's gimmick, used as a form of intimidation or a combination of both of those elements, adding some face paint made some guys that much cooler.
Here are the 20 coolest face painted wrestlers of all time.
20. The KISS Demon
The KISS Demon was created with a licensing agreement with KISS the band. Supposedly the beginning of a stable that was to include wrestlers modeled after each of the KISS band members, things did not quite pan out as expected.
Fun Fact: The guy who played the KISS Demon also played another face painted character known as 'The MVP.'
19. Powers of Pain
The Powers of Pain was a team that consisted of the Warlord (left) and The Barbarian (right). Managed by Mr. Fuji, who in my opinion was one of the best managers ever, their face paint was fairly generic but nevertheless intimidating.
After the team split up, they both stepped away from using facepaint and each gained a new manager—Warlord being paired up with Slick and Barbarian joining Bobby Heenan.
18. The Missing Link
The Missing Link was a character similar to that of George 'The Animal' Steele—a wild man that needed a handler to bring him to the ring and keep him under control.
He would repeatedly smash his own head into turnbuckles during matches and use his head as a weapon throughout as well.
His face paint seemed to be geared more towards furthering his character.
'Dewey' Robertson passed away in August 2007. RIP.
17. Yoshi Tatsu
Yoshi wrestled in WWE for some time before debuting the above look.
During a feud with Tyson Kidd, where he was written off of television for a few weeks, Yoshi debuted this look when he returned citing it as a tribute to The Great Muta and his Japanese heritage.
Obviously an enhancement of character, it's still a pretty cool paint job.
The Ugandan Giant wrestled mainly in the 80's and 90's and his gimmick was that of a head hunter.
He actually kind of freaked me out as a kid so I'm assuming his paint was both character enhancement and intimidation based.
I have not seen many matches involving Vampiro, but the ones I have seen show him to be a pretty good wrestler.
He has mainly competed in smaller organizations and wrestled in WCW for awhile. I like his gimmick and his face paint is, of course, an extension of his character. Simple, but effective.
14. Bull Nakano
Competing in Japan for most of her career, most fans from North America know Nakano mainly from feuding with Alundra Blayze/Madusa in WWE and WCW.
Her face paint is fairly understated most of the time save for the crack like streaks down her face.
Fun Fact: Nakano is now a professional golfer.
13. Ultimate Warrior
Whether or not you liked The Ultimate warrior or not, thought his wrestling was horrible or not, when I was young, he had some of the coolest face paint.
The almost Batman logo look to it probably had something to do with it for me, but that's besides the point.
I'm pretty sure this paint was used as character enhancement, because his promos being so crazy sounding are probably what he used to intimidate his opponents.
12. Papa Shango
The man that would go on to become Kama Mustafa and The Godfather legitimately scared the hell out of me when I was a kid.
His voodoo gimmick of causing wrestlers to vomit and ooze oily looking stuff out of their heads was only enhanced by his skull inspired face paint.
Looking back on it now, the idea is laughable, but try telling that to 11- and 12-year-old me.
11. The Great Kabuki
The man credited with being the first to blow 'Asian Mist' into his opponent's face has pretty cool face paint. Almost looks like he was on the receiving end of the Asian Mist himself.
I don't know much about Kabuki but got to see a couple of his matches. Not too shabby at all.
He held a series of retirement matches in 1998 and I will say on a guess that his paint was geared to intimidation.
10. The Road Warriors
Considered by many as one of the greatest tag teams of all time, if not the greatest, The Road Warriors both had simple but wicked face paint.
Hawk (left) and Animal (right) had their Mad Max-inspired gimmick down to a science, spiked shoulder pads and all.
This face paint seems to be a combination of character inspiration and intimidation.
An absolute icon in professional wrestling, Sting is mostly known now for the above version of face paint. He also had a red version of the paint during his time in the NWO Wolfpac.
He even had previous face paint along the lines of Ultimate Warrior styling when he still had blond hair and more recently went to a Joker inspired face paint.
The different changes have lent him to using his face paint as both intimidation and character enhancement.
8. The Great Muta
The Great Muta has had many different styles of face paint throughout the years leading me to believe they are based on character enhancement.
Mostly known in North America for his stints in WCW and short time in WWE, Muta has always been a valued wrestler wherever he has competed.
While he has since switched to wearing a mask since shaving his head, he will always have a place in our heads as a face painter.
Along the lines of The Road Warriors, Demolition also employed a Mad Max-inspired theme in their gimmick.
Another of the greatest tag teams of all time, at least in my opinion, Demolition seemed to use their paint as intimidation and character enhancement.
6. Hakushi/ Jinsei Shinzaki
The whole idea of Hakushi 'tatooing' his face and body with Kanji characters simply exudes coolness. I'm pretty sure it's mostly used as character enhancement and not intimidation.
Dustin Rhodes eccentric character has one of the coolest paint jobs ever. Now a perennial fan favourite, many people are hoping for a showdown at Wrestlemania with his brother Cody and I am one of those people.
This face paint is all about character enhancement.
The Samoan Bulldozer was one of my favourite gimmicks of all time.
Umaga's face paint seemed like an extension of his tribal tattoo art that he wore across the rest of his body.
Umaga used his face paint to enhance his character and as a source of intimidation to his opponents with it resembling war paint of certain tribes.
Sadly, Eddie Fatu passed away in 2009. RIP.
3. Damien 666
As the colours and styles of Damien 666's paint have changed throughout the years, the constant is the number 666 he has emblazoned across his forehead.
Wrestling for most of his career in Mexico, Damien uses his paint as an obvious character enhancer, but it also seems that he uses it for intimidation purposes as well.
Bonus: He played two characters while in WCW.
2. The Boogeyman
If any gimmick was tailor made to have face paint associated with it, the Boogeyman is that character. He made a few changes to it throughout his WWE tenure, but all consisted of a blood red backdrop on to which he superimposed other things.
Another character that seemed to use it mostly as enhancement, as I think his eating of worms was his intimidation factor.
1. Jeff Hardy
In my opinion, Jeff Hardy is the absolute undisputed king of the face paint in professional wrestling. Seriously, this man has it down to an art form at this point.
His use of face paint is pure character enhancement, but nobody has ever done it better.
He changes it up quite frequently, and with the exception of maybe a couple of times, it always looks really good.
So there you have it folks. My picks for the twenty coolest face painted wrestlers in pro wrestling history. Did I miss any? Leave your favourite out? If so, please let me know in the comments section as to who you think should be on here.
Thanks for reading.