Whether it's going to a masquerade, making costumes for a play, or trick-or-treating on Halloween, making a plaster mask will be a fun and inexpensive option to create your costume. With the right materials, a person willing to model your face, and some patience, you can make a plaster bandage mask in no time. You can also decorate your finished plaster mask with paint, feathers, glitter and sequins to personalize it.
Part 1 of 4: Prepare the Materials to Make the Mask
Step 1. Create a workspace with newspaper and a tarp
Choose a room where you have plenty of space, such as the living room, a craft room, or the kitchen counter. Spread the newspaper or tarp on the floor to protect it. Have absorbent paper handy in case any drops fall off the covered surface.
Step 2. Find a face model
You will need someone to be a model so that you can mold the mask correctly. Pick someone who is willing to sit still for at least 30 to 60 minutes. Ask him to lie on the floor on his back or to sit with his back straight and his head tilted slightly back in a chair with a back.
You can use your own face as a model, although this option can be somewhat cumbersome if you are making a plaster bandage mask for the first time. You can work in front of a mirror to make it easier for you to put the plaster bandage strips on your face
Step 3. Give the person an old T-shirt and a headband so they don't get stained
You can also use bobby pins to push the hair out of her face. Wrap a towel around his neck and shoulders to prevent plaster from falling on that area.
Step 4. Cut the plaster bandage into strips with scissors
The strips should be between 2 inches (5 cm) and 4 inches (10 cm) wide and about 3 inches (8 cm) long. Make some strips shorter than others for variety. Cut 10-15 strips so that you have enough to cover the person's face with two layers of plaster bandage.
When you finish cutting the plaster bandage strips, place them in a bowl
Step 5. Spread petroleum jelly on the person's face
This will make it easier for you to remove the mask once it dries. Spread the petroleum jelly, emphasizing the hairline, the eyebrows, and around the nostrils. Also spread the petroleum jelly on the eyelashes, lips, lower jaw, and under the chin.
Part 2 of 4: Build the mask
Step 1. Dip the strips one at a time in a bowl of warm water
Grab a strip with clean fingers and quickly dip it into the bowl of water. Use your finger to remove excess water from the strip. This should be moistened but not soggy.
Step 2. Cover the person's forehead
Use your fingers to smooth out any wrinkles that form so that the strip lies perfectly on the skin.
Step 3. Place strips on the cheeks and chin
Work your way down starting at the person's forehead, continuing around the cheeks, and ending at the chin. Make sure the strips touch each other once they are placed on the face. Smooth the strips with your fingers as you place them so that they dry flat.
Step 4. Use smaller strips to cover the nose and upper lip
Save the inner areas of the face for last. Be careful when placing the strips on the person's nose and upper lip, as these areas can be especially sensitive.
Make sure not to put a plaster bandage inside the person's nostrils so as not to make it difficult for them to breathe. Leave a margin of just over 1/2 inch (1 cm) around the nostrils
Step 5. Cover her eyes and mouth with a plaster bandage if you want
Let your model know that you are covering these areas so she can prepare. Ask him to close his eyes, and then use smaller strips to cover them completely, pressing the plaster bandage against the eye area. Then ask him to close his mouth and use a strip to cover it.
- Covering the eyes and mouth is optional, and will depend on the person's preferences.
- Keep your mouth uncovered if you want the person wearing the mask to be able to speak clearly when wearing it.
- You can keep your eyes uncovered so that the person wearing the mask can see when they are wearing it.
Step 6. Apply at least two layers of plaster bandage
When you've covered the person's face with strips of plaster bandage, repeat the process once. Make sure the strips touch each other and are smooth. By placing two layers of plaster bandage, you will make the mask more resistant.
Step 7. Correct any remaining gaps with wet fingers
Once you've finished spreading the second coat, step back a bit and look at the mask. Dip your fingers in the water, which will be somewhat sticky from the remains of plaster. Next, carefully correct any gaps or wrinkles in the plaster bandage strips using wet fingers to smooth the surface of the mask.
Part 3 of 4: Dry and remove the mask
Step 1. Wait 12-15 minutes
Ask the person to stay still so the mask dries naturally. When it starts to solidify, it may feel somewhat hard and itchy. This is normal.
Do not use a blow dryer or fan to speed up the mask drying process, as excess air can cause the cast to crack. In addition, it can be dangerous for the skin of the model
Step 2. Ask the person to move their mouth and jaw so that the mask begins to loosen
Touch the mask to make sure it is dry. Then ask the person to move their mouth and jaw. You can also suggest that he move his eyebrows and wrinkle his nose. In this way, the mask will come off the face more easily.
Step 3. Remove the mask slowly, separating it from the model's face
Once the mask has come off, place your hands in front of the model's face. Grab the sides of the mask and peel it off slowly. Move your fingers toward the center of the mask as you remove it.
Do not pull hard on the mask, as you could cause damage. The mask should come off easily, due, in part, to the petroleum jelly applied to the model's face
Part 4 of 4: Decorate the mask
Step 1. String the mask
Use a hole punch to poke a hole on each side of the mask, just below eye level. Next, tie a thick loop or string to each hole. In this way, the mask will be attached to the face of the person wearing it once the two ends of the ties or ropes are tied at the back of the head.
Step 2. Add a beak, horns or bumps to the mask
Use any leftover strips of plaster bandage or cut a few more to make a beak over the nose of the mask. It is a good option if you want to decorate the mask as if it were the head of a bird.
- You can also include a pair of horns on top of the mask to make a demon costume.
- Place large bumps and raised areas on the mask for a chilling effect.
Step 3. Paint the mask
Apply a layer of gesso over the mask to smooth it out. Afterward, decorate it with acrylic paints or water-based paints. Add a design around the eyes and mouth. Decorate the entire surface of the mask.
- If you've placed a plaster bandage over the mask's eyes and mouth, you can paint some eyes and a mouth to create a more original design.
- Once you've finished painting the mask, you can apply a coat of sealer to protect the design and create a glossy finish.
Step 4. Add feathers, glitter or sequins to the mask
Use craft glue to add colored feathers to the mask for a festive design. You can also apply glue to the entire mask and dip it in glitter for a sparkling effect. Adding sequins is also a very fun option.
Step 5. Let the mask dry overnight once you've decorated it
Once you've finished creatively decorating the mask, let it dry overnight on a flat surface. Then wear it to a party, special event, or just for fun.