How to Face Paint - Water Proof Face Paint

As the popularity of face paint keeps spreading around, more and more venues would like to have a face painter, including those with bounce houses and pools. Before, this was almost impossible, as face paint could not be exposed to excessive sweat or water.

Thanks to the creative minds in our industry we now have a collection of brands that face painters can use to help make your designs last longer and survive the impossible!

What are the Best Brands of Water and Sweat Resistant Face Paints?

There are a few brands out there but we will cover the most popular and widely used brands. One of the most popular brands is ProAiir Hybrid liquid face paints. ProAiir is a brand of alcohol based liquid makeup that can be used with an airbrush or a sponge and brush. Their line of face and body paints includes four different products: ProAiir Hybrids, ProAiir Inks, DIPS and ProAiir Solids. Each one of those products has a specific use: 

  1. ProAiir Hybrid face paints are water and sweat resistant paints that can be used on the face with an airbrush or a sponge and brush and is perfect for designs that only need to last one day (although with proper care it can last longer). ProAiir Hybrid can be washed off using just liquid soap and water. Make sure to first apply the liquid soap and only once you have loosen the pigment apply water to rinse off.
  2. ProAiir Ink is a longer lasting product and it was design for body painting or temporary tattoos. Because it is harder to remove we do not recommend for people to use it on the face, since we have very delicate skin and it can get irritated by the removal process. ProAiir Inks can also be applied with an airbrush or sponge and brush. To remove ProAiir Inks we recommend using baby oil, lotion or a makeup remover; please use caution so not to irritate the skin.
  3. ProAiir DIPS is a product designed specifically to do your line work. It should not be widely applied on the face using a sponge since its very concentrated formula can make it hard to remove. Use it only for details and thin lines. DIPS are just a concentrated version of ProAiir Hybrids. DIPS can be ashed off just as you would with ProAiir Hybrids.
  4. ProAiir Solids face paints are a brand new product designed to work just as regular water activated face paints do, but instead of using water you use ProLong activator to activate the paint. Just a few sprays of ProLong on your cake will do the trick. Then you can brush the paint on or sponge it as you would with regular face paints, the only difference being that because of the alcohol content of the activator, the paint will dry faster so you need to work at a higher speed. ProAiir Solids can be washed off just as you would do with ProAiir Hybrids.

Another great brand of water and sweat resistant face paints is European Body Art or EBA. The people at EBA have been producing high quality water and sweat resistant makeup for a very long time and they have produced the only product for sale in the USA that is not alcohol based. EBA produces two different lines of makeup:

  1. Endura body paints are water and sweat resistant alcohol based paints. They are designed to last several days and because of that we do not recommend using them on the face, since the removal process can irritate the sensitive skin on the face. Endura is great for body paintings as well as small temporary tattoos that can last for up to 7 days with proper care. Endura can be applied with an airbrush or using a sponge and brush.
  2. Vibe is the first non alcohol based water and sweat resistant face and body paint available in the USA. Their formula is perfect for face painting little kids since they won't be bothered by the traditional alcohol smell and cold feeling of other alcohol based paints. Vibe has in our opinion the very best black water and sweat resistant face paint. Unlike other brands, it is perfect for line work since it goes on very smoothly and provides a solid coverage without leaving the traditional streaks that some liquid face paints leave when doing line work with a brush. 

Will the Alcohol Bother Kids's Eyes?

It is possible that some kids might be bothered by the smell and cold feeling of alcohol face paints, so we suggest that you don't paint right over the eye area. Also, if you are dealing with young kids, you might want to use the a non alcohol brand like Vibe, which will still provide water and sweat resistance, but won't bother the little ones.

Are there Any Special Things I Need to Watch Out For?

In general the application process is very similar, the main difference being that you are working with liquids instead of solids. For your sponge work, you can use a spray nozzle on your paint bottles to spray the paint directly on the sponge. For line work, you will want to drip a few drops of paint on a small palette and work from there. You can always re activate dried out paint from your palette using 99% alcohol ( do not use 70% alcohol because the high water content on that will make the paint weaker against water and sweat).

Try to keep the paint from touching your fingers because you won't be able to wipe them off with just a towel and water while painting. You could also keep some alcohol wipes to clean up your hands every now and then.

If you need to wipe off small errors, you can use q-tips dipped in 99% alcohol as an eraser, they work like magic!

Can I use the Same Sponges and Brushes I Use with Regular Face Paints?

Yes you can. You want to make sure to use synthetic brushes; brushes with natural bristles won't work with this kind of makeup.

How Do I Clean Up My Brushes and Sponges After Use?

You can clean your brushes and sponges using liquid soap, gently rubbing the soap onto the bristles and the sponge until all of the makeup is broken down; then rinse gently with warm water. Repeat if necessary.

Previous article How to Face Paint - White Face Paint Tips

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