A cupcake just isn't the same without frosting, but many of us have a hard time applying it without making a mess. There's an easy fix for this: heat the icing, then hand dip the cupcake.
Photo by one30outerspace
Icing a cupcake properly can be a time-consuming task. Or, you can try this heat and dip method as explained by WKDQ.com:
I started with regular frosting -- nothing special about it. I then heated it up in a glass bowl in the microwave for 15-30 seconds on defrost. You may need to put in longer depending on how much frosting you use at one time. Heat frosting until it's still thick but a little softer than normal. If you heat it up too much, put in the refrigerator for 3-5 minutes. Take each cupcake and dip it into the frosting, using a swirl effect to let drippings fall off cleanly. Wait until cooled and redip for a clean, overall appearance.
Keeping the frosting at the right consistency can be a challenge with this approach, but you still might find this method easier. For more detail, check out the full post.