If your football team colors are basic, like Penn State's blue and white, you won't have trouble finding the right colors for face painting, but you'll still want to make sure you're using paints that are formulated for skin (don't use craft paint intended for paper or other surfaces -- it's not the same, even if it's non-toxic). Tubes of cream face paint are good for simple designs or covering a large area of the face. Recommended for ages eight and up, cream makeup is usually applied with the fingertips.
For younger children, a water-based face paint palette can be used with a small brush and a sponge, but while you'll get a variety of basic primary and secondary colors, you'll likely only need a couple of specific colors. These types of palettes are good for simple designs such as a paw print or football on the cheek.
If your precise team colors are less basic (think Temple's Cherry or University of Iowa's Old Gold), or if you're opting for a more intricate design, Snazaroo has a large selection of colors that can be purchased individually, including burgundy, ochre yellow and eight different shades of blue. The company also has sports theme packs for face painting that include three colors paired according to NFL team colors. Apply with watercolor brushes and/or sponges. Wash off with soap and water.
While you're supporting your team, play it safe -- AOL Health has a concussion update for football fans and players.
Even something as simple as painting one half of your face one color and the other another will stand out impressively, but if that's too over-the-top, brush paint the team logo, letters, your favorite player's number on your cheek, or use a face painting stencil to get the same look. Get creative with the theme of your team's mascot: Rooting for Louisiana State University's Fighting Tigers? Paint your face up as a tiger using this tutorial and yellow, purple, white and black face paint.
Painting and Finishing
Once you've got your face paint, brushes, sponges and design plan, start by washing and drying the face thoroughly. Place a towel within reach and some moist wipes to keep your hands clean and to wipe away any mistake. After the design is painted on, you may want to add a little glitter to the surface (for older kids and adults only -- and don't rub into the skin). Let the paint dry, and take care not to touch your painted face!