Have you ever wanted to make your own creepy Halloween mask but didn't know where to start.
In this Instructable I'll show you an easy method for making your own homemade Halloween mask without all the complicated steps involved with latex and silicone mask making.
Step 1: Supplies
You will need the following supplies:
- Apoxie Sculpt or Magic Sculpt (Available on Amazon)
- A craft mask
- Rubber gloves
- Popsicle sticks
- A Sharpie
Step 2: Make Your Sculpting Tools
Using your scissors, cut your Popsicle sticks to create sculpting tools. I recommend creating one with a sharp, pointy tip and one with a slightly curved tip.
Step 3: Draw a Design on Your Mask
Take your Sharpie marker and draw a design on your craft mask. This design will act as a blueprint for when we start sculpting the mask and by no means needs to be perfect.
Step 4: Mix Your Apoxie Sculpt Together
Take equal parts of Part A and Part B of the sculpting material and mix them together.
Start with two small balls of the material and roll them, knead them and twist them together until the material has a uniform color indicating it has been thoroughly mixed.
TIP: Start with small quantities so you don't mix more material than you need. The material hardens while you sculpt so this will help you avoid wasting any material.
Step 5: Apply the Sculpting Material to Your Mask
Apply little balls of the material to your mask. I take a ball the size of a blueberry and squish it to about 1/8" of an inch thick and apply it to the surface of the mask.
You want to build up the entire surface of the mask. If your mask is really flimsy work from the outside edges inward letting the Apoxie harden between applications to provide more support to your mask.
- If your craft mask is really flimsy, use your fingers to provide support behind the mask as you apply the sculpting material.
- Apply the material to the outer edges first and allow it to harden and then come back to your project. This will create a more rigid mask for you to work with.
- If you intend to add texture, do it as you add each layer of sculpting material before it hardens. If you forget to add texture it becomes more difficult to do once the Apoxie has hardened.
- To smooth the surface of the sculpting material tap it with your finger and then roll your finger away. This motion acts as a good general smoothing technique.
Step 6: Follow the Design You Drew
As you apply the sculpting material you may overlap the lines you drew a little bit. This is fine.
To re-expose the lines and get the material to conform to your design, simply use one of your sculpting tools to tap the material back until the line is exposed again.
TIP: I prefer to use the sculpting tool we made with the slight curve on the tip for this. Use the curved side of the tool against the surface of the mask to easily pull back the material.
Step 7: Sculpt Texture Into Your Mask
Use your tools, gloves and a toothpick to sculpt various types of texture into your mask. There are tons of great tutorials online for various textures you can sculpt.
I will cover some of the basic ones here.
Skin Texture: Drag the tip of your toothpick across the surface of the material. Let your lines be slightly wavy. Having lines cross each other as though you are drawing tall, skinny X's creates a realistic pattern similar to skin texture. Apply this technique using light pressure.
Pores: Hold your toothpick VERY gently and lightly tap the surface of the mask to add small pores. You can put a sandwich bag between the sculpting material and the toothpick in order to add a more realistic subtlety to your texture. Apply this technique with light pressure.
Wrinkles: Dip your toothpick in water and drag the long side of the toothpick along the material making sure not to touch with the tip of the toothpick. Apply this technique with medium to heavy pressure depending on the depth of the wrinkle you want.
Soften Features: Dip your finger in water and lightly smooth areas like skin texture, wrinkles and pores to remove some contrast. Removing hard edges makes features look more natural.
Porcelain: You can smooth a surface entirely by dipping your finger in water repeatedly and using it to smooth out the surface of the sculpting material. As the surface of the material becomes "milky" it will start to smooth out and become uniform.
TIP: There are tons of great texture sculpting techniques out there. Keep exploring to learn new methods and experiment to discover your own!
Step 8: Add Multimedia Elements to Your Mask
The awesome thing about Apoxie Sculpt masks is that you can add multimedia elements like wire, screws, staples, nuts and bolts, found objects, etc.
This allows you to create some really one of a kind effects in your masks. Experiment with different materials you find around your home to create a look you love!
- When the Apoxie is wet you can insert objects directly into the clay and let it harden. These objects will then be secured into place.
- If you decide to add multimedia elements after the Apoxie has hardened you can either add more sculpting material on top of the hardened Apoxie and then add your object, or your can drill into the hardened material and use a 2-part epoxy glue to secure the items.
- Computer hardware packs have then best screws for masks (imo). They are short with flat ends. This way they will not go all the way through your mask and don't have sharp ends to scratch someone's face.
Step 9: Use Aluminum Foil to Save Sculpting Material
TIP: You can use aluminum foil as an under structure for elements of your mask to reduce the amount of material you need to use and to keep the final product lighter than if it was made entirely from Apoxie Sculpt.
Step 10: Add Holes for Mask Straps
You can add holes for mask straps by simply drilling into the Apoxie Sculpt.
The material is quite rigid so just let the drill do all the work and you will have perfectly placed holes for a strap.
TIP: I recommend following the corner of your eye out to about 1/2" to 3/4" inch from the edge of your mask for the holes. Use your Sharpie to mark the holes and then drill a hole near each eye.
Step 11: Spray Paint a Base Coat on Your Mask
Use spray paint to add a base coat of color to your mask. I recommend starting out with a white primer in order to help your paint stick better to the surface of the mask.
Step 12: Add a Base Color Using Spray Paint
To add some additional color you can use spray paint for base coat colors on your mask.
TIP: Use masking tape and/or paper towels to cover areas of the mask that you don't want paint to get on to.
In order to create the line down the middle of this mask I used masking tape along the line and then taped down a paper towl to cover the rest of that side of the face.
Step 13: Painting Technique 1 - Rub Off
With your base coat colors in place we'll use acrylic paints for the final details.
To do the rub off paint technique
- Mix your acrylic paint 50/50 with water to create a thin wash of paint.
- Apply it to the surface of your sculpt and let it get into the cracks and low points.
- Take a rag and rub away the access paint.
TIP: Make sure you wipe with your rag and do not dab. You want to remove the paint wash from the high points while leaving it in the low points.
Step 14: Painting Technique 2 - Dry Brush
Dry brushing is an excellent technique to bring out the detail in your Halloween props and masks.
To dry brush:
- Get some paint on the tip of your paint brush.
- Use card board or a rag to wipe away almost all the paint from your brush.
- With almost no paint left on the tip of your brush gently flick it across the high points and details of your mask.
TIP: Dry brushing will make sure all the texture you took the time to sculpt into your mask really pops so people can see it.
Step 15: Painting Technique 3 - Mottling
Mottling adds break up to color and makes your mask feel more organic through added layers of transparency and color.
To mottle paint:
- Use a plastic surface and add some paint.
- Mix in water to create a consistency similar to water color paints.
- You want enough liquid in your brush so it's watery but not dripping.
TIP: If there is too much liquid in your brush wipe the tip on the side of your water cup to remove some of the excess liquid that wants to drip.
Step 16: Painting Technique 4 - Spattering
Paint spattering adds flecks of color that you find in organic designs like skin, insects, and plants.
To apply paint spattering:
- Take a disposable chip brush and cut it in half at a slight angle.
- Create a semi-watery paint mix and dip just the tips of the bristles into the mix.
- Take your fingers and pull back on the bristles causing them to flick forward and spray droplets of paint at your mask.
- Practice this technique on a piece of cardboard before trying it on your mask. This will allow you to get a feel for the amount of pigment you would like to apply to your mask.
- Water down your paint mix enough to achieve transparency in the paint droplets that are applying to your mask.
- If the paint droplets add too much color take a rag and blot them to mute the contrast a bit.
Step 17: Use a Detail Brush for Finishing
You can use a brush with a fine tip to finish painting the small detail spots on your mask including cracks, tears, wrinkles, inside the mouth, stitches, etc.
TIP: Using a toothpick can help you get into spots that your detail brush doesn't reach. This is also helpful for adding fine detail to the ends of cracks, tears, eyelashes, etc.
Step 18: Fake Blood Can Take It to the Next Level
Using a fake blood paint on your mask can really up the creep factor.
I use an airbrush paint called "Minitaire - Ghost Tint: Fresh Blood." It can be applied with your detail brush and dries looking nice and wet.
- Fake blood can be used to hide almost any imperfections in a mask.
- Use fake blood in cuts, seams, and holes to tie together a gory look.
- Use your finger to tap and smear the blood to give it a more authentic look.
Step 19: Use Twine to Easily Add Mask Straps
An easy way to make mask straps is by simply using twine.
I pull a length of twine from the tip of my finger down to my elbow and then double that length. Cut off your length of twine and fold it in half.
Push the folded spot through the holes you made in your mask, from the inside of the mask. When the loop comes out the other side, thread the two ends of twine through the loop and pull on it to tighten it into place.
TIP: With two ends of twine on each side of the mask you can tie it behind your head in two spots to make sure it's secure. The first one I tie right below the crown of my head and the second one I tie right in the middle of the back of my head. Once the second one is tied I slide it up the back of my head a little which usually tightens it up a bit.
Step 20: Try on Your Mask and Scare Your Friends
This last step is the MOST important step of the process.
Once your mask is complete it's mandatory that you try it on and hide behind a door to scare the first poor soul who crosses your path!
Using the techniques in this Instructable and the included video you should be able to create any number of different styles and designs for Halloween masks.
The most important thing is to have fun, be creative and scare all your friends!
Thanks for reading my first Instructable! This is MadCity Haunt, saying "Everyday is Halloween!"