wolfe hydrocolors

vaderslittlefinger  asked:

Hey! I'm putting together a cosplay that would require me to paint my face, and I'm drawing blanks as to what types of paints I could use. This'll be my first time doing a cosplay involving paint, so I'm not really sure what I could use. I know I want something that won't sweat off or smudge, but I also want something that's easily removable and won't need to be reapplied during a con. Kinda having issues trying to figure out what I need to buy! Any help is greatly appreciated! Thank you!

Hello there!

Is it just your face, or will you need to do parts of your body, as well?

If it is just your face, you have a couple of options – water-based paint, or cream paint/grease paint. They each have their advantages and disadvantages, and may react differently to different skin types. You may also want to choose based on what exactly the design is, as you can get more detail easier with water-based paints and a small paintbrush.

Make sure that you buy actual theatrical makeup instead of part store makeup (which is low quality and not worth it) or, even worse, using something that is not meant for skin contact (such as actual paint). I would also stay away from tutorials that use things like eyeshadow mixed with lotion, as this won’t get you a satisfactory product, may not be safe for lip or nose contact, and will cost just as much (if not more than) actual face/body paint.

Water-based paint comes in a solid cake that is activated by water and then applied with either a sponge or a brush. It dries to a chalky, powdery finish.
Pros:
- Much less likely to rub off
- Dries to a powdery finish (instead of a greasy finish)
- Can cover a larger area with less paint (a small cake can paint your whole body at least once, most likely multiple times)
- Better for larger areas of the body (since it rubs off less, dries powdery, and gets you more paint in the same size tub)
Cons:
- More difficult application (it takes some practice to get the right amount of water so that you aren’t removing your paint as you are applying it/so that you don’t get streaks in your paint – but really, it isn’t that hard for either type)
- Less opaque
- Can dry out and crack or flake (Snaz tends to do this more than nicer brands, but even nice brands can dry out if they are applied too thickly or overpowdered)
- Less waterproof (but can be made more durable by mixing it with liquiset instead of water and spraying liberally with setting spray – even so, I’ve only had minimal issues with a bit of a runny nose, and haven’t even had issues on my hands, while using only water to mix)
- Not as good for dry skin

With water-based paint, it has a bit of a learning curve on how to apply it, but once you figure out the right amount of water to use and to let it fully dry between layers, it isn’t difficult. You seal water-based paint with a setting spray (such as Ben Nye Final Seal or Mehron Barrier Spray); powder is only used with this type of paint if you want to absorb excess oil or moisture (especially if you use an antiperspirant powder). Just powder alone won’t do anything to seal this type of paint. I personally swear by Kryolan Aquacolor, though other brands are popular as well – Mehron Paradise AQ, Snazzaroo, Ben Nye Magicake, Wolfe Hydrocolor FX, etc.


Creme paint is oil-based and is creamy in texture. It will stay creamy within its tub before you apply it, and will stay creamy on your skin. If you need to do more than just your face, I wouldn’t recommend this, since it is more likely to smear.
Pros:
- Goes on very smoothly and in fewer coats
- More opaque than water based
- Good for dry skin
- Easier application (takes less practice to get it smooth)
- Easier to mix colors (if needed)
- Better for smaller areas of the body (just the face)
- More waterproof
Cons:
- More difficult to seal (can still rub and smear even when fully powdered and sprayed)
- Use more paint for a smaller area (since you are using straight paint, not mixing a concentrate with a liquid)
- Can feel heavy and greasy; not as good for oily skin

You seal this type of paint with a liberal amount of powder and spraying with setting spray. Some people use neutral or transparent powders meant for setting makeup, and others use baby powder, though baby powder tends to lighten the makeup a bit. A smooth white is easier to obtain with this type of paint than with water-based. Some brands of this type of makeup are Ben Nye Creme Liners, Mehron Creamblend Stick, and Kryolan Supracolor,.

I also have a huge amount of body painting information compiled in this tag on my blog. I recommend looking through that, though some of the older info may be slightly outdated as I’ve learned more. (Also, I tend to be biased toward water-based paints, but that’s mostly because I use them myself and because I tend to need to paint my body as well as face, which you can’t do with creme paints.)

Happy body painting!

fabrickind