Types of Clowns - Auguste, Whiteface, Character & More

Types of Clowns – Auguste, Whiteface, Character & More

Clowns have been a beloved form of entertainment for centuries, captivating audiences with their unique personalities and distinctive styles. From the elegant Whiteface clown to the clumsy Auguste clown and the versatile Character clown, there are various types of clowns that continue to delight and entertain people of all ages.

Each type of clown brings its own charm and characteristics, from their makeup styles to their costumes. Whether you’re fascinated by the exaggerated features of the Whiteface clown or the comedic antics of the Tramp clown, there is a type of clown that will surely capture your imagination.

Key Takeaways:

  • There are different types of clowns, including Auguste, Whiteface, and Character clowns.
  • Each type of clown has its own unique traits and characteristics.
  • Clown makeup styles and costumes vary depending on the type of clown.
  • Clowns have been entertaining audiences for centuries and continue to be a popular form of entertainment.
  • Whether you prefer the elegance of the Whiteface clown or the versatility of the Character clown, there is a type of clown for everyone to enjoy.

Whiteface Clown – The Classic and Grotesque

The Whiteface clown is one of the most iconic types of clowns. There are two major subcategories of Whiteface clowns – the Classic Whiteface clown, which is elegant and majestic, and the Grotesque Whiteface clown, known for its exaggerated features and zany appearance.

“Whiteface clowns cover their faces in white makeup and wear oversized clothing, including oversized shoes. They often use red or black features to accentuate their faces, and their outfits are usually colorful and eye-catching.”

The Classic Whiteface clown embraces the traditional image of a clown with a clean, white face and meticulously applied makeup. This type of Whiteface clown exudes elegance and sophistication, captivating audiences with their graceful movements and precise comedic timing.

The Grotesque Whiteface clown, on the other hand, takes a more exaggerated approach to makeup and costuming. With larger-than-life features and vibrant colors, this type of Whiteface clown embodies the essence of slapstick comedy, creating humorous and visually striking performances.

The Classic Whiteface Clown

The Classic Whiteface clown’s appearance is characterized by a white face with distinct, exaggerated features. They often use red or black accents to draw attention to their facial expressions, and their outfits are typically vibrant and attention-grabbing. The Classic Whiteface clown’s demeanor is dignified and refined, creating a sense of enchantment and wonder for the audience.

The Grotesque Whiteface Clown

The Grotesque Whiteface clown deviates from the traditional clown aesthetic by exaggerating facial features and using bold, contrasting colors. This type of clown often incorporates oversized shoes, bright clothing, and playful accessories to enhance their comedic presence. The Grotesque Whiteface clown’s performances are dynamic and energetic, engaging the audience with their larger-than-life antics and unpredictable behavior.

Whiteface Clown Classic Whiteface Clown Grotesque Whiteface Clown
Makeup White face with distinct, exaggerated features Exaggerated facial features with bold colors
Costume Vibrant and attention-grabbing outfit Oversized shoes, bright clothing, playful accessories
Characteristics Dignified, refined demeanor Dynamic, energetic performances

Auguste Clown – The Clumsy Sidekick

The Auguste clown is a fascinating type of clown that brings a sense of chaos and humor to the clown act. Often portrayed as the Whiteface clown’s helper, the Auguste clown is known for their wild and clumsy behavior, creating comedic moments that elicit laughter from the audience.

Auguste clowns have unique features that set them apart. Their faces are fleshtone with black-and-white features, and they have large ball-shaped noses that add to their comical appearance. Their costumes are extravagant and often mismatched, further emphasizing their playful and unconventional nature.

With their mixed traits of both the Whiteface and Tramp clowns, the Auguste clown showcases a dynamic range of physical comedy and slapstick humor. Their exaggerated movements and reactions entertain and engage the audience, adding an element of unpredictability to the performance. Whether they’re tripping over their own feet or creating mayhem on stage, the Auguste clown never fails to bring laughter and joy.

Characteristics of Auguste Clown:

  • Clumsy and wild behavior
  • Fleshtone face with black-and-white features
  • Large ball-shaped nose
  • Mismatched and extravagant costumes

“The Auguste clown’s hilarious antics and comic mishaps never fail to entertain the audience. Their clumsy behavior and unique appearance add an element of surprise and laughter to the clown act.” – Clowning Magazine

Clown Type Distinctive Characteristics
Whiteface Clown Elegant and majestic appearance, white makeup, oversized clothing
Auguste Clown Clumsy and wild behavior, fleshtone face, ball-shaped nose, mismatched costumes
Tramp Clown Forlorn and downtrodden appearance, sooty face, fingerless gloves, tattered suit and hat
Character Clown Portray specific occupations, hobbies, or easily identifiable individuals through costumes and makeup

Tramp Clown – The Everyman

The Tramp clown is a uniquely American clown type and is often associated with the struggles of the Great Depression. This type of clown is known for their forlorn and downtrodden appearance, evoking a sense of sadness and empathy. The Tramp clown’s makeup consists of a sooty face with white around the eyes and mouth, creating a contrasting and exaggerated effect. They often wear fingerless gloves and tattered suits and hats, symbolizing their impoverished state.

The Tramp clown brings an element of vulnerability and relatability to the clown act, connecting with audiences on a deeper emotional level. They embody the everyday struggles and hardships that many people face, allowing spectators to empathize with their character. Through their physical comedy and comedic timing, the Tramp clown brings laughter and entertainment, despite their somber appearance.

The Symbolism of the Tramp Clown

The Tramp clown’s appearance and clothing choices serve as symbols that reflect their character and the stories they tell. The sooty face represents the dirt and weariness of their life, while the white around the eyes and mouth highlights their expressions and emotions. The fingerless gloves symbolize their resourcefulness and ability to adapt with limited means, while the tattered suit and hat represent their poverty and struggle.

Overall, the Tramp clown is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit, finding humor and joy in even the bleakest of circumstances. They remind us that laughter can be found in the face of adversity and that even in difficult times, there is room for hope and happiness.

Tramp Clown Key Attributes
Sad clown Evokes a sense of sadness and empathy with their downtrodden appearance
Sooty face Characterized by a dirty, sooty face with white around the eyes and mouth
Fingerless gloves Symbolize resourcefulness and adaptability with limited means
Tattered suit and hat Represent poverty and struggle

Character Clown – The Versatile Performer

The Character clown is a type of clown that exists primarily in clown competitions. These competitions provide a platform for clowns to showcase their creativity and talent by portraying specific occupations, hobbies, or easily identifiable individuals through their costumes. Whether they transform into a cop, a baseball player, a doctor, or a boxer, the Character clown’s ability to embody various personas is what sets them apart.

Unlike other types of clowns that are defined solely by their makeup or costumes, the Character clown’s personality plays a crucial role in defining their character. While their makeup can be of the Whiteface, Auguste, or Tramp style, it is the unique twist they bring to their performances that captivates the audience. The Character clown’s versatility lies not only in their ability to portray different occupations but also in their interpretation and portrayal of those roles.

Clown competitions provide a platform for Character clowns to showcase their comedic skills, storytelling abilities, and improvisation talents. These performers use their acts to entertain, engage, and elicit laughter from the audience. Whether they are juggling, performing magic tricks, or engaging in physical comedy, the Character clown’s aim is to bring joy and entertainment to people of all ages.

The Character clown’s ability to transform into various characters while maintaining a consistent personality is what sets them apart from other clown types. Through their performances, they demonstrate that it is not just their costume that defines their character but rather their unique personality shining through each role they portray. The Character clown truly embodies the spirit of versatility and creativity, making them a beloved and essential part of the world of clowning.

Mime Clown – The Silent Performer

Combining the art of mime with clowning, Mime clowns offer a unique style of performance that captivates audiences with their silent acts. These clowns rely on body language and facial expressions to communicate and entertain, showcasing their incredible control over movements and emotions. Mime clowns wear makeup that covers their faces up to the jawline, leaving their necks uncovered. This distinctive makeup style emphasizes their expressions and allows the audience to focus on the intricate movements of their bodies.

Unlike traditional clowns who use verbal humor, Mime clowns create comedic and dramatic situations through physicality and gestures. Their performances often involve mimicking everyday activities or interacting with imaginary objects and barriers. By removing the element of speech, Mime clowns challenge themselves to express their stories and emotions in a way that transcends language barriers and connects with people on a deeper level.

“A Mime clown is like a painter who uses their body as the canvas and their movements as the brushstrokes. It’s a silent art form that speaks volumes.” – Anonymous

The Power of Body Language and Facial Expressions

Body language and facial expressions are the primary tools of communication for Mime clowns. Every gesture, posture, and facial movement is carefully choreographed to convey meaning and evoke emotions. From a simple shrug of the shoulders to an exaggerated facial expression, Mime clowns can tell a story and elicit laughter or sympathy without uttering a single word. This reliance on nonverbal communication showcases the universal language of emotions and enables Mime clowns to connect with audiences on a profound level.

Mime Style Makeup Body Language Facial Expressions
Makeup that covers the face up to the jawline, leaving the neck uncovered. Precise and exaggerated movements that convey actions and interactions. Expressive and exaggerated facial expressions that depict emotions and reactions.
Allows the audience to focus on the intricate movements of the body. Conveys physicality and mimics everyday activities, objects, and barriers. Transmits emotions and tells stories without the need for words.

Mime clowns have broken through language barriers and crossed cultural boundaries to entertain and delight audiences around the world. Their performances are a testament to the power of nonverbal communication and the universal nature of human emotions. By leveraging body language and facial expressions, Mime clowns showcase the artistry and beauty of silent performances.

Rodeo Clowns – The Protector of Cowboys

Rodeo clowns play a crucial role in bull riding events, ensuring the safety of the cowboys and entertaining the audience. There are two types of rodeo clowns – the barrel clown and the bullfighter clown. Let’s take a closer look at these fascinating performers and their unique contributions to the world of rodeo.

The Barrel Clown

The barrel clown uses a padded metal barrel as a home base in the center of the arena. When a bull rider is in danger, the barrel clown can quickly dive into the barrel and provide a safe refuge. The barrel not only protects the clown but also distracts the bull, giving the rider time to escape. The barrel clown’s quick thinking and agility are essential in these high-intensity moments.

The Bullfighter Clown

The bullfighter clown, on the other hand, engages with the bull directly. They use their skills and agility to divert the bull’s attention away from the fallen rider, giving them a chance to escape safely. Bullfighter clowns have a deep understanding of bull behavior and use their expertise to protect both the riders and themselves. They are fearless, athletic, and play a vital role in the success and safety of bull riding events.

Both types of rodeo clowns may have distinctive geometric-shaped makeup designs, adding to the visual spectacle of their performances. Their presence ensures that the thrill of bull riding is accompanied by the knowledge that safety measures are in place for everyone involved.

Types of Rodeo Clowns Main Role Key Feature
Barrel Clown Provide a safe refuge for bull riders Padded metal barrel as protection
Bullfighter Clown Engage with the bull directly Divert bull’s attention away from the fallen rider

Creepy Clown – The Dark Side of Clowns

The creepy clown archetype taps into the fear and distrust that coulrophobia (fear of clowns) often elicits. While some people find clowns creepy and frightening, this fear has transcended into popular culture, where evil clowns have become a cultural phenomenon. The hidden faces of clowns, masked by makeup, can create a sense of unease and unpredictability, making them ideal as antagonistic characters in literature and fiction.

Creepy clowns often hide behind a disguise, using exaggerated features and unsettling makeup to create an eerie and unsettling presence. The distorted smile, piercing eyes, and exaggerated expressions can instill a sense of terror in those who encounter them. This persona of the creepy clown feeds into our primal fears, playing on the uncanny nature of something seemingly innocent and joyful twisted into something sinister.

Antagonistic characters with a creepy clown persona have become a staple in horror movies, books, and even haunted attractions. They embody a combination of humor and horror, walking a fine line between making audiences laugh and sending chills down their spines. The allure of the creepy clown lies in its ability to elicit a complex range of emotions, tapping into our deepest fears and providing a thrilling and unsettling experience.

Examples of Creepy Clowns:

Clown Name Medium
Pennywise Stephen King’s novel “It” and film adaptations
Twisty American Horror Story: Freak Show
The Joker The Batman comics and various film adaptations
Art the Clown Terrifier

These characters, among others, have solidified the creepy clown as a recognizable and enduring figure in popular culture. Their menacing presence and the psychological horror they elicit have made them memorable and iconic.

The existence of creepy clowns alongside other types of clowns showcases the range and versatility of clowning as an art form. While some clowns bring joy and laughter, others tap into our darkest fears and challenge our perceptions of innocence and humor.

Jester Clown – The Historical Entertainer

The Jester clown, also known as the court jester or fool, holds a unique place in the history of entertainment. During the medieval and Renaissance eras, jesters were employed by noblemen and monarchs to entertain their guests with a wide range of comedic skills. They were also a popular attraction at fairs and markets, entertaining the common folk with their music, storytelling, acrobatics, juggling, jokes, and magic tricks.

The Jester clown’s performances were a delightful mix of humor, wit, and satire. They would often use their comedic skills to poke fun at the nobility and high-ranking officials, providing a lighthearted critique of the societal norms of the time. Their brightly colored costumes, adorned with eccentric hats, became a trademark of their performances, adding to their whimsical and playful persona.

With their ability to captivate audiences through laughter and entertainment, Jester clowns played a crucial role in medieval entertainment. They brought joy and laughter to both the noble classes and the common people, bridging the gap between social classes through humor. Even today, the legacy of the Jester clown lives on, reminding us of the enduring power of laughter and the importance of entertainment in our lives.


Clowns are a diverse group of performers with various types and styles. From the classic Whiteface clown to the versatile Character clown, each type brings a unique element to the world of clowning. Whether they invoke laughter, fear, or curiosity, clowns continue to captivate audiences with their colorful costumes, makeup, and entertaining performances. Whether you prefer the graceful elegance of the Whiteface or the comedic antics of the Tramp, there is a type of clown for everyone to enjoy.


What are the different types of clowns?

There are several types of clowns, including Whiteface, Auguste, Tramp, Character, Mime, Rodeo, Creepy, and Jester clowns.

What is a Whiteface clown?

Whiteface clowns are iconic and come in two major subcategories – Classic Whiteface clowns, known for their elegance, and Grotesque Whiteface clowns, recognized for their exaggerated features and zany appearance.

What is an Auguste clown?

Auguste clowns are a mixture of Whiteface and Tramp clowns. They are often portrayed as the Whiteface clown’s helper and are known for their wild and clumsy behavior.

What is a Tramp clown?

Tramp clowns have a forlorn and downtrodden appearance. They are the brunt of every joke and bring a sense of vulnerability and relatability to the clown act.

What is a Character clown?

Character clowns participate in clown competitions and can portray specific occupations, hobbies, or easily identifiable individuals through their costumes. The clown’s personality defines their character.

What is a Mime clown?

Mime clowns rely on body language and facial expressions to communicate and entertain the audience. They wear makeup that covers their faces up to the jawline.

What is a Rodeo clown?

Rodeo clowns specialize in protecting cowboys during bull riding contests. They can be barrel clowns or bullfighter clowns and play a vital role in ensuring safety and entertaining the audience.

What is a Creepy clown?

Creepy clowns tap into the fear and distrust associated with coulrophobia. They have hidden faces and are often portrayed as evil or antagonistic characters.

What is a Jester clown?

Jester clowns were entertainers during medieval and Renaissance eras, employed by noblemen and monarchs. They showcased a wide array of comedic skills and wore brightly colored costumes and eccentric hats.

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