How to Create a Realistic 'Bleeding-Knife' Effect




Introduction: How to Create a Realistic 'Bleeding-Knife' Effect

About: I create and teach makeup effects and prosthetics for a living. I love The B52's, good sarcasm and boring things like history, science and Radio 4.


Stuart here from

This video shows you how I created a realistic 'bleeding blade' to simulate skin cutting for a TV show I did a few weeks back.

There was no time or budget to make a fake chest, and I was not sure where the camera would be so I had to make it work from every angle, make it safe and make it quick. I recreate the process for you here. 

Please leave comments or get in touch if you have any questions!


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    32 Discussions

    the effect looks awesome, and made me cringe every time.

    Just came here today and... This is horrible............ Really horrible :P

    Is this cheap to make how much was it?

    Nice!! instead of making a syringe, I made a little chamber inside the knife, and added a little push button in the hole. so if i wanted to make it bleed, i pushed the button which squeezed the plastic chamber and out comes the blood! Just a simple modification so you can do it in front of your friends without bringing around a syring and tubing everywere xD

    1 reply

    step 1:
    cut self/sibling/friend/other with knife
    step 2: done

    looks like it could be quite good on stage we were going to have a really dramatic scene in drama class where someone committed suicide with a knife but i was having trouble with it thanks for this

    Hey im totally going to make this but where did you get the syringe. i have actually been looking for one of those for awhile. i wanted to make bledding effects like getting knifed in the face or something. please responde asap. thanks

    2 replies


    Try searching 'Laboratory Supplies', '100ml syringes', 'Vet Supplies' and 'Large Hypodermic Syringes'.

    Most syringes for general medical use are much smaller volume syringes, so to hold this amount of liquid, you may need a vet suppliers or laboratory equipment supplier.

    You'd be surprised how commonly these things are used, for all kinds of industry. Think any kind of work where accurate measurement of fluids such as ink cartridge refilling, etc.


    if you use liquid latex and put a thin covering over the part you wish to cut, when you move the blade away it would leave a mark where you ripped the latex looking more realistic to the viewer.

    Hi Bubble

    He really does, doesn't it?

    Well, the blood I used was a sugar syrup blood (as many of them are) and was quite orangey-yellow.  I though it may also have been a little thick to pump easily down the blade.  I was worried it may not flow quick enough as the gag need to be quick to be most effective rather than a lingering closeup which may reveal the trick, so I added a little water.

    The thinned blood ran easily, but where it was thinner at the top of the flow, it revealed my pasty-white skin and the blood colour as a result (thicker pools of blood appear darker).  Real blood is not actually that translucent, rather it is opaque so would not reveal the pale skin underneath so readily.

    Also, I was shooting under fluorescent lights and these have a blue tinge which combined with the orangey-yellow blood makes for a brown colour. 

    I am going to get a better camera with improved white balance (and HD) to help this issue.  Good point, though!


    Wow, this really brought up the notch for those other fake blood syringe pump effects. Its looks very realistic. I might have to build one for next halloween.