Sculpt Gel is a silicone paste which is mixed together to create a spreadable mixture which can be applied directly onto skin, to create skin-like effects. It can be modelled to the desired shape and texture, setting whilst remaining flexible so it can move with the skin. It is ideal for quick injury effects.
Sculpt Gel is great for small to medium sized casualty makeup effects such as cuts, scars, blisters, swelling, gunshot wounds and other fleshy trauma. Being translucent, soft and flexible it moves with the body.
It can be used directly on the skin or in a mould for a quick turnaround appliance or for continuity reasons. It has been tested, developed and improved with feedback from professional makeup artists.
It does have its limitations! You are not going to economically create a whole body out of Sculpt Gel or a decapitated head - these things require pre made appliances, gags and props. After all, you wouldn't paint your house with tiny pots of paint from an art shop when huge tins of house paint can be bought in hardware stores.
Sculpt Gel is a paste that comes in three parts - marked A, B & C. Part C is the softener - the more you add, the softer it will be when set. This is particularly useful on areas which stretch a lot, such as necks or joints.
All components remain a soft paste until equal amounts of parts A & B are mixed together - they do not dry with exposure to air. Once mixed you have a working time of between 5 - 10 minutes depending on the ambient temperature (the warmer it is, the quicker it sets, or 'cures'). Adding softener will also extend the time it takes to set.
All you need to use Sculpt Gel is a Sculpt Gel kit, a clean mixing palette and a mixing tool such as a palette knife or tongue stick.
Kits are available in both clear and pre coloured, and you can tweak the colour by adding pigments to the material while mixing. Tint colour with silicone pigments, flocking or creme based makeup. Once set, you can apply makeup onto the surface if necessary, to help get an even better blend.
Creating Effects With Sculpt Gel
The real trick with Sculpt Gel is to do the right thing at the right time. Sculpt Gel starts as a liquid (albeit a rather thick one, but a liquid nonetheless) and gradually sets up into a flexible 'solid' which will retain its shape once cured.
Once A&B (and softener if you have added that) has been mixed, the clock is ticking and you need to apply the Sculpt Gel into place quickly. It is at this time that the edges need to be smoothed out and blended into the skin. If you leave this too late, the material will start to thicken (the heat of the skin can speed up the curing) and as the material thickens it does not blend out so smoothly.
Blend the edges out so they disappear into the surrounding skin without leaving a noticeable edge. If you try moving the gel around as it sets, then it retains the tool marks and starts to take texture. If that is the desired effect then great - but in the interests of blending the edges out to nothing it is worth doing this first.
Once the edges have been blended out, then create the trauma effect inside the centre of the blended out patch of gel on the skin before it sets. Use tools such as cotton buds, brush handles and soft tipped/rounded sculpting tools or makeup brush handles to sculpt, carve and dent your effect as desired.
Help smooth the surface with a sponge dipped in 99% alcohol - the sponge will gently work the surface and the alcohol helps prevent it from sticking. It will then evaporate, leaving the surface clear of any residue and allow painting.
This can be applied in layers, building up translucent washes of colour to create a realistic finish that matches the surrounding skin. Flicking and stippling of colour usually works best, as rubbing the surface too much can cause the alcohol to reactivate the layers beneath and cause patches of colour to be rubbed off.
If the Sculpt Gel still appears too shiny in areas, add a little translucent powder or anti shine.
PRO TIP: If using a water based artificial blood, you may find it beads up on the Sculpt Gel surface which is essentially a water repellent silicone. This is known as reticulation and can be overcome by stippling a little dish washing/washing-up detergent such as Fairy Liquid onto the surface of the Sculpt Gel before adding blood.
** Latex Inhibition **
Beware the use of latex and Sculpt Gel! Latex can be used on cured Sculpt Gel, but avoid using latex on the skin before Sculpt Gel has been applied. There are chemicals in latex which can prevent Sculpt Gel (a platinum-based silicone) from curing correctly.
To remove Sculpt Gel, work at an edge with a Wet Wipe or makeup remover pad or cotton wool. Use a mild makeup remover to help, and simply peel away. If you have used any other prosthetic adhesives, then use an appropriate remover such as Pro Clean or Super Solv.
When using any products, materials or equipment, you should familiarise yourself with them and take appropriate health and safety measures to protect yourself and others around you from harm. Obtain and consult the relevant MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) from your supplier. Do not use on damaged or irritated skin, and discontinue use immediately if any adverse reactions occur.