Guide to mixing face paints.
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Mixing Face Paints

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One of secrets to painting faces creatively is achieving exactly the right colours. To do this, you need to make sure you're mixing face paints correctly. But don't worry, like most artistic skills it's simple if you take face painting step-by-step.

Primary principles
Let's assume you're ready with your brush, your preferred choice of professional face paints (such as the range from Snazaroo), and start mixing face paints. The whole principle of creating the exact shades and tones you want starts with the primary colours: red, yellow and blue.

Mixing Face PaintsThe colour wheel
If you remember your school art lessons, you'll know about the colour wheel: blending the primary colours produces secondary colours, and the shade of the secondary colour depends on how much of each primary colour you use in the mix.

Let's say you want to mix orange, as the background for a tiger face. Orange is created by mixing the primary colours yellow and red. Using more yellow will give you a lighter orange; using more red makes it darker.

Similarly, yellow and blue make green, with yellow making it lighter and blue turning it darker. Blue and red make purple; use more red in the mix and you'll produce a lighter shade.

Extra tips
Use these basics when you're painting faces, and you can create virtually all the colours you need. It's worth noting a couple of other points when you're mixing face paints. To create brown, mix all three primary colours together; you'll need to experiment a little to create the right shade, remembering that blue will tend to darken and yellow will lighten.

Mixing Face Paint ShadesSubtle shades
The other point is that white and black will also help you make a colour lighter or darker. It seems obvious, but quite often face painters just think of white or black for details or highlights, and forget how useful they can be in achieving shades and tones.

Armed with this knowledge, you'll soon become expert at mixing face paints. So pick up your brush and start painting faces!

Useful Articles

Face Painting Step by Step
Professional Face Paints
Mixing Face Paints
Painting Faces
Face Paint Kits
Face Painting Guidelines
Checking Your Face Painter Has Public Liability Insurance
FACE The Face Painting Association
A Beginner's Guide to Booking a Face Painter
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