10 Tutorials on How to Use Liquid Latex to Create Awesome SFX Makeup

10 Tutorials on How to Use Liquid Latex to Create Awesome SFX Makeup

There are definitely workarounds for doing SFX makeup without liquid latex but having the real thing can be a lot easier to work with and there is a ton of different effects you can create with it. You can use it to create fake, wrinkly skin, rotted torn flesh, and unique prosthetics you sculpted from your own imagination. You can even paint it on your skin as a cheeky and racy outfit.

There are actually so many different creative ways you could use liquid latex, and I have gone down that rabbit hole many times already discovering a plethora of creative liquid latex uses on the Interwebz!  

Here are a 10 tutorials on how to use liquid latex to create all sorts of awesome SFX makeups!

1. How to Use Liquid Latex to Create Fake Wounds

Items Used:

  • Liquid Latex
  • Cotton
  • Tissue
  • Red Paint
  • Fake Blood

Liquid latex is great for making open wounds because with a little tissue paper and some liquid latex, you can cover the section of skin your working with and blend it out with a nice thin edge, then rip a section away so your flesh looks genuinely torn. The artist in this video adds a little cotton and latex back in to the center of the wound to give a roughed up exposed flesh texture rather than leaving a patch of perfectly smooth skin inside the wound.

2. How to Make Prosthetics with Liquid Latex and Cotton

Items Used:

  • Clay for Sculpting a Mold
  • Liquid Latex
  • Cotton

This artist uses a face cast, clay, liquid latex, and some cotton to create a bunny mouth prosthetic. If you don’t have a face cast and you want to sculpt something onto a face shaped area, you can use a mannequin head or even a plastic face mask. You might not need a face cast at all, depending on what kind of prosthetic you’re trying to make. The main idea is to basically create a mold with the clay and then paint over it with latex to create a reusable prosthetic piece. You can use tissue, cotton balls, and cotton pads to beef your prosthetic up a bit so it’s thick and stable.

3. How to Make Prosthetics with Liquid Latex and Flour

Items Used:

  • Liquid Latex
  • Flour

Another way to create a prosthetic is by using a mixture of flour and liquid latex. This creates a chunky paste that you can play around with and form into whatever shape you’re looking to create. The artist in this video uses the paste and some polymorph plastic horns to create multiple sections which come together to form a gorgeous She-Devil character.

4. How to Create an Old Age Makeup with Liquid Latex

Items Used:

  • Liquid Latex
  • Face Paints or Regular Makeup 

One of the most fun things to do with liquid latex is to age you or your model 30-50 years with a face full of fake wrinkles. The basic idea is to pull out patches of your skin, paint the latex on, let it dry, and when released the latex with bunch up to give you a face full of age lines. The artist in this video does some pre-latex face painting to add more depth and highlighting to to the cracks and crevices the latex is going to create.

5. How to Create a Burn Makeup with Liquid Latex

Items Used:

  • Liquid Latex
  • Black, Brown, Purple, Red Cream Paints
  • Foundation
  • Vaseline
  • Fake Blood

Using liquid latex, paints, vaseline, and fake blood, this artist creates a ghastly mess of burned flesh on one side of her face. The liquid latex is applied one layer at a time and then ripped away to create patches of seared off flesh. The vaseline is a nice touch to make the flesh look even more raw and oozy.

6. How to Create a Scald Makeup with Liquid Latex

Items Used:

  • Items Needed:
  • Liquid Latex
  • Vaseline
  • Red face paint

While scalding and burning is the same kind of idea, I had to add a separate tutorial for the liquid latex scald makeup because it’s so different than the burnt flesh look. While the burnt flesh is all charred and dark, this scald makeup uses red paint and vaseline to give a fresh, horribly painful looking blistered effect. It’s a simple enough technique but this artists pulls it off in a way that makes me simultaneously cringe and applaud.

7. How to Create a Rotted Flesh Makeup with Liquid Latex

Items Used:

  • Liquid Latex
  • Cotton
  • Corn flakes
  • Various Face Paints
  • Artex Component B (Vaseline would work as well)

I always love a tutorial when an artist uses something a little odd, like breakfast cereal, as part of the make up. This artist uses corn flakes to simulate rotten chunks of flesh and it creates a delightfully disgusting face full of mangles gore. She uses Artex Component B to add an extra level of fleshy shine but you could use Vaseline to get this effect or skip that step altogether. The end result is a grotesque blend of detached skin and decaying flesh tones.

8. How to Create a Flayed Skin Makeup with Liquid Latex

Items Used:

  • Liquid Latex
  • Tissue
  • Red and Black Face Paints
  • Fake Blood
  • Foundation
  • Stipple Sponge

A wonderful trick with liquid latex is that you can layer latex and tissue paper to a section of skin and then rip it away to give a convincing illusion of ripped flesh. This tutorial follows the same idea as the open wound tutorial but the artist creates an entire flap of detached skin peeling off her skull to reveal a bloody mess underneath. I really felt that this one warranted its own entry.

9. How to Create 3D Skin Effects with Liquid Latex

Items Used:

  • Liquid Latex
  • Face Paints (optional)

I left the items needed section a little bare on this one because while the artist in this video is doing a full Mystique makeup, my intention was to share the overall process. This technique could be used to create scales, subdermal implants, protruding bone, or countless other skin abnormalities. These pieces can even be done on a sheet of wax paper then then affixed to your skin once dry, perhaps to create overlapping layers of scales.

10. How to Use Liquid Latex as an Adhesive

Items Used:

  • Liquid Latex

Liquid latex also makes a great adhesive for light pieces and can be used to conceal thin edges of prosthetics and bald caps. When applying a bald cap you would dab the areas of your skin where the cap will sit and then stretch the bald cap down and press it into the latex. Once dry, you can go over your edges with a few layers of liquid latex to create a seamless transition between your skin and the cap.

BONUS: How to Make a Bald Cap with Liquid Latex

Items Used:

  • Styrofoam Head
  • Liquid Latex
  • Baby Powder
  • Sponges

Bald caps aren’t super cheap and if you need multiple caps to do a few different makeups or just need extras to practice with, they can get pretty pricey. This technique uses a foam head and multiple layers of liquid latex applied in an incrementally smaller pattern in order to get a thick cap with thin, blendable edges. I love saving money with DIY SFX hacks so I have to say, I’m pretty excited to have come across this idea.

Your Turn! What Are You Going to Create with Liquid Latex?

These tutorials are only a handful of things you can do with liquid latex. You can use coloured latex for body painting to create ultra tight fitting costume pieces. Or you can create all kinds of fabricated accessories and costume items like masks, zombie mouths, and horns.  There are plenty of ways to get create with this stuff and come up with something totally unique.

I'd love to see your creations and what you have done with liquid latex! 

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