Instructables
Picture of How to make a Latex Mask with a 2 part mold
I made a full head latex mask of the predator using a 2 part plaster mold, this method is used to provide excellent detail. and a reusable mold.
 
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Step 1: What you need


You will need the following things
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a Polystyrene head (ebay)

10kg NewPlast modeling clay, this is a clay that is reusable like plasticine

20-25kg Crystacal R Plaster (this is a hard plaster, much harder than plaster of paris, do not use plaster of paris for this its too soft)

Jute Scrim (burlap)

Hot Glue Gun

Vasline

Large Marbles or other round objects to make the key points.

1-2 litres of Liquid Latex

100ml Latex Thickener.

Talcum powder (Talc)

Plumbers Epoxy Putty (for mold repairs)

HouseHold Ammonia

Acrylic Paints

AirBrush

AirBrush Propellant or compressor.

Artists Paint Brushes.

Washing Up Liquid.

Tubs to mix paint in and store it for a short time.

Sheet Metal pieces

Dental Pick

Depending on the mask your doing you may also need some foam, i found buying a cheap yoga mat to chop up works well, i used this to fill the dreadlocks.

Step 2: Sculpting the design


Take your polystyrene head and build up layers of Newplast so that it matches the dimensions of your own head or slightly larger as the latex will shrink slightly in the mold.

Now you can start sculpting your mask design, mine is the predator so i just added layers on and manipulated them to the shape i needed.

its important to note that you should try and keep things simple, if you have complex parts on the design you will need to cut these off and mold them on there own.
Partybot6 months ago

I'm trying to make a latex skin covered in round dome shaped bumps for a dinosaur costume. Carving a raised smooth bump is a pain especially in big numbers.

Do you think it would work to dremel/imprint half dome indentations into a surface, apply a mold release agent, pour/apply the latex, let cure, and peel off the surface? Any recommendations on the material to use as the surface?

Thanks in advance!

n1cod3mus (author)  Partybot6 months ago
I would cut them out and then stick them on, or you could do the reverse like you say cut an indent and then pour latex on to it.

i would cut a disc, put a handle on one side then put a loop of ridged wire on the other, push the wire in then rotate the disc and it will cut a round dip out consistently.
Sashuke251 year ago
I was thinking about buying that exact latex for a slightly smaller but also two part mask (Cosplaying as Madame Vastra from Doctor Who. Aaand it's my first mask ¬.¬)
Two questions, a) Is it safe to be in contact with skin both as a mask and an alternative to spirit gum? b) Was 1L enough for you to make that WHOLE mask?
Also, regarding the plaster, how much would you say you used to make the entire mold at the end? Finally, do you have an alternative to painting the mask instead of buying specialised paints- I've got standard acrylics andd pastels etc.
Sorry for all the interrogations, I just don't want to waste any money :-D Thanks for the best tutorial online~ (Seriously though)
n1cod3mus (author)  Sashuke251 year ago
n1cod3mus (author)  Sashuke251 year ago
A) you can apply latex directly to the skin but it would be best to buy skin safe latex, having said that you couldn't use this to stick the mask to your face as the latex would remain attached to the mask at the end, and if you use it more than once it will start to build up inside. Spirit gum is your best bet, you can get it in most costume shops.

b) yes it was enough but the coating wasnt very even, I have since found a better more professional method which does require a hell of a lot more latex but you end up with an even coat and its quicker to do. clamp the 2 halves of the mold together and seal the edge using hot glue or duct tape. then slowly pour latex in to the mold until its full, leave it for about 30 minutes then empty the latex out, then leave it to dry inside the mold for 24 hours. use baby powder inside before you separate the 2 halves of the mold.

c) painting it, if you want to use acrylic paint then you need to mix it with latex to make it flex, what your doing is using the acrylic as a color for the latex. if you want to use it in an airbrush you need to water it down with ammonia, but wear a decent mask if your going to spray it, not a cheap paper one from the diy store. this is how I painted mine and it works a treat you don't need specialist paints.

n1cod3mus (author)  n1cod3mus1 year ago
oh and btw spirit gum is what they use to stick masks to faces in the TV and movie industry, but make you buy the spirit gum remover as well. both are cheap and will only cost about £2 each a pot
loanshark2 years ago
Holy crap this is awesome. Thanks for sharing.
n1cod3mus (author)  loanshark2 years ago
thanks no problem, I would have released the new mold photos but its been a bit hectic for me as i just bought a house and lost my job :-(
ferry_vue3 years ago
Amazing work! do you specialize in costume design and special effects? Cause this is a great tutorial.
n1cod3mus (author)  ferry_vue3 years ago
thanks, I dont do it professionally but personally, i just enjoy doing projects properly so i did a load of research and figured out the best way to do it and documented it so others could follow my foot steps or improve on them.

the key is not to scrimp on materials.
This is the most worthwhile advice. It's so frustrating to try to save a few bucks, only to lose all that sweat equity when the project falls apart at the end.
n1cod3mus (author)  ferry_vue3 years ago
I've made a few of these from the same mold now and sold them on ebay
Mermaid7162 years ago
I've got to tell you this is absolutley incredible! How you did everything, all the steps. You're amazing and I think you missed your calling.
Wierd question, since I don't think I'd ever be able to make this will you make any more and sell the mask?
Thanks
n1cod3mus (author)  Mermaid7162 years ago
Hi there, sorry for the delay, yes i will be making them and selling a limited number of them, i have one of these left with out dreadlocks but its painted, it is the last one as i have destroyed the mold using a hammer, which was really hard to do.

But i have since made a new mold, i haven't tested it out yet but it will be slightly larger than this one, and have a little more detail.

well i say i haven't tested it out, i tried a different method of making the mask by filling the mold with latex, but this failed even with trying to seal the mold, it just leaked out. I was documenting the process again to put on here but I may have to return to painting the latex in to the mold.

I'll PM you about them.
Hi Chris,
Thanks for the reply. Can you send me a pix of the new mask?
I think I might just go with the other without the dreads cause that's a little high in US dollars, plus shipping. Thanks though and I look forward to the pix. You are very talented!
Sorry if this is a silly question, I'm new to this. After you had made the mould with the plaster could you use the mould to create a bust that you could airbrush? And if so what material would your pour in the mould to make the bust? Thankyou so much by the way, you explain the process in a way that's far easier to some of the other tutorials out there.
n1cod3mus (author)  LouisCorelli3 years ago
i would make a latex copy of the mask using the mold, take it out of the mold and use something like A B foam

to be honest this is a lot of hassle and you would be better off just buying a polystyrene head off ebay, plus if you put anything that isnt rubbery in the mold its likely to stay in the mold.

thanks, i tried to make it as easy to understand as possible, and took as my pics as i could with my plaster covered hands at the time lol
A couple of questions, but first amazing work!
First, what would the total cost be roughly, of course.
Second, in step 11 the wrinkles around the mouth they don't look painted on how did you do them? If they are painted, wow that is some amazing painting.
Third, how would you make the mouth look wet?
Fourth, is the mask hard or rubbery like the masks you buy at a store?
Lastly, if it is too large for the person's head would you just add foam pieces on the inside of the mask?

Sorry for all the questions I just would really hate to mess up expecally if doing this costs a lot. Thanks for your time as well.
n1cod3mus (author)  Zergling_pack3 years ago
1) well the plaster cost me about £30 for 25kg and the latex is about £20 for 5 litres, plus acrylic paints at £3 a pot, and some ammonia at £3, if your using canned Air for Airbrushing it cost about £9 a can and i used up 4, then bought a compressor for later projects.

2) the wrinkles i cut in to the sculpt before i made the mold

3) you could need to spray the mouth with something glossy, you could use PVA glue but this would crack up if that area go squished

4) the mask is rubbery like the ones you buy

5) if you put a slit up the back and find it is too big you could always put velcro on it and over lap the back to pull it in
Well that isn't as much as I thought it would be. Thank you for the quick reply and information!
n1cod3mus (author)  Zergling_pack3 years ago
No worrys, You can buy most of the materials from tomps.com or claymansupplies.co.uk

I get my latex from tomps as i know its good quality they also do the crystacal R as well but sometimes its cheaper to get it from clayman
This is a great instructable and an amazing product.
It shows that you put a lot of effort into this, nice one!
n1cod3mus (author)  superant100003 years ago
thanks appreciate the nice comments, yes there was a fair bit of effort for this one yes, and i will have to do it again due to the shrinkage as this one doesn't fit me unfortunately.

i will be doing another instructable soon on how to make the body for it, i have to admit this will be helped out by a fellow instructable member who did an awesome werewolf costume but he was so excited about making it he forgot to document it so i will document mine when i do it.

so don't forget to subscribe ;-)
A really nicely documented project. Can you put a number on the "shrinkage"? 2%, 5%, 10%, could be useful to know.
n1cod3mus (author)  Dream Dragon3 years ago
its hard to say really, maybe 10%
Clayton H.3 years ago
Any pictures of it on your head? I think it looks kinda weird without eyes. Like your staring into a black hole and it's just sucking you into it .
Anyway, Great Project!
n1cod3mus (author)  Clayton H.3 years ago
Tis done my friend, on the last step, i didnt put it up before because i have a fat head hehe and it doesnt fit me as well as it should, which is why i mention making your sculpt larger than you need it as you will experience shrinking.
it dont fit you hmmm you should have made a mold of your own head rather than buying a head on ebay
n1cod3mus (author)  Cyberscann543 years ago
to make a mold of my own head i would need help for one, and 2 i would need Alganate and Plaster bandages.

I dont have any of those, so i made the best of what i had at the time, now i know, and you do too, that you will get some shrinkage.