How to make latex masks and body moulds

Written by ryan voss
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How to make latex masks and body moulds
With latex you can create more sophisticated disguises. (Comstock/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

Body moulds and custom latex masks are a major step up from standard store-bought costume pieces. Not only will they fit much better on their intended wearer, making your own mask or prosthetics allows for virtually limitless customisation and gives you full control over how the finished product will look.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Prosthetic cream alginate
  • Latex gloves
  • Plaster and plaster bandages
  • Oil-based clay
  • Plastic sheeting
  • Liquid latex

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  1. 1

    Mix the prosthetic alginate with water, following the manufacturer's instructions, and apply it to the body part where you want to make a mould. Use the entire face if you are making a mask. Wear gloves and cover the area by hand with a relatively thin layer. Make sure to avoid trapping air bubbles under the alginate. If you are covering someone's face, do not cover their nostrils. The person will need to keep the eyes and mouth closed. Allow the alginate to completely set up.

  2. 2

    Cover the alginate with a layer of plaster bandages to give it rigidity. Allow the plaster to completely set. As with the alginate, do not cover the nostrils, but completely cover as much of the alginate as possible. Once the plaster is dry, gently pull the alginate away from the body.

  3. 3

    Melt the oil-based clay and pour it into the mould, covering the entire inner surface with a fairly thick layer of clay. Let the clay harden. You may want to do this several times to build up a thicker clay layer. Once the clay is hardened, gently remove it from the mould and set it face up on a plastic sheet. Add more clay around the edges until there are no gaps between the clay and the plastic.

  4. 4

    Sculpt any changes or corrections you wish to make in the clay for the finished mask or body mould. Carefully include all the details you will want in the finished product. Every detail will transfer into the finished latex.

  5. 5

    Cover the entire clay model with plaster. Brush the plaster on gently until all of the clay is thinly covered, then apply enough so that the plaster is 2.5 to 5 cm (1 to 2 inches) thick on all parts of the clay. Allow the plaster to contact the plastic sheet to make a rim for the mould. Allow the plaster to completely dry, then remove the clay from it and turn it upside-down.

  6. 6

    Pour liquid latex into the plaster mould, filling it completely. Let it sit for about 10 minutes, then pour the latex back out of the mould to leave a thin layer coating the mould. Allow this to dry in a well-ventilated area over night. Once it is dry, you can remove the latex from the mould and paint the finished mask or body mould however you choose.

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