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How to Make a Movable Jaw Mask

Updated April 17, 2017

Solid face masks can work for some costumes, but the addition of a movable jaw brings convenience when talking and eating and makes your mask more convincing. Convert a paper or plastic mask to have a movable jaw, or start from scratch and make your own. Use the mask as part of a costume for Halloween or a low budget film, or turn the mask-making into an activity to do with children using paper and paint.

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  1. Purchase or make your own mask. The mask should cover most of the front of your face. Find free templates online from sites like freefunfings.com, print at home and decorate yourself. Make sure to use heavy paper, such as card stock, paper mache or poster board.

  2. Cut the jaw portion from the mask. Make the cut just below the bottom of your ear. If your mask already has space for a mouth, cut it from the corner edges of the mouth. Punch holes in the corners near where you cut --- one hole on each side of both the top and bottom pieces.

  3. Align the holes in both pieces and secure each side with a brass fastener. The fasteners should be tight enough to hold it but loose enough to allow the jaw to move up and down freely.

  4. Punch a small hole near the chin portion of the mask and then on either side of the mask. Thread the wire or pipe cleaner through from front to back through the chin hole, tying a small knot or bending the wire so it will not fall out. Cover the front part of the wire with another piece of paper or paint. For the side holes, thread the elastic front to back on one side, and then determine how much will be needed to hold the mask to your head. Cut the length accordingly, and then thread it through the second hole back to front, securing it with a knot.

  5. Place the mask on your face carefully, lining the wire or pipe cleaner under your jaw and putting the elastic around the back of your head.

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Things You'll Need

  • Paper or plastic mask
  • Paint (optional)
  • 2 brass prong paper fasteners
  • Small wire or pipe cleaner
  • Hole puncher
  • 2 feet of thin elastic

About the Author

Allison Edrington is a freelance journalist based out of Eureka, Calif., specializing in crafts, science fiction and gaming. She has written for the "Eureka Times-Standard," covering education, business and city government, and previously worked for the "Chico Enterpise-Record." Edrington graduated from California State University, Chico, with a bachelor's degree in journalism and a minor in history.

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