Saturday, February 22, 2014

Face Paint Stain Tests: 1, 12, and 24 hours later

Final Results at 1, 12, and 24 hours later.

I've had several customer inquiries regarding staining, so I thought I'd finally do a little stain test on myself! Granted, I don't own every brand out there, so I wasn't able to test everything.  But, I think I got in a good variety of the brands I do own...Paradise, Wolfe, Kryolan, TAG, Global, and I just have one cake of Cameleon.  It is also important to note that all skin types are different,  and even different areas on the same person will react differently to any paint.  This is just a test on my own skin which doesn't really tell you a whole lot about anyone else, but is only meant as a starting point for reference. So, please view these results through that lens.

I started by painting three stripes of each color on my legs.  The idea was to wipe off a row of stripes after 3 different periods of time...1 hour, 12 hours, and 24 hours.

Initial swatches
An hour later, I cleaned off the far left column, using a makeup remover wipe.

 After one hour, you could still see the following:

- Paradise Brilliant dark blue
- Paradise Brilliant light blue
- TAG pearl green (just a little)
- TAG pearl rose
- Wolfe Metallix pink
- TAG pearl purple
- Wolfe neon blue

All of the Global and Kryolan colors came off clean, as well as my one Cameleon swatch.
 12 hours later, I cleaned off the center column using the same makeup remover wipes.  This is probably a typical time frame for a child who has his or her face painted at a party one afternoon/evening, then keeps the paint on overnight.  The following colors were new additions to the ones that showed at 1 hour:

- Paradise wild orchid
- Paradise beach berry
- Kryolan Aquacolor Yellow
- Kryolan Aquacolor Green
- Wolfe Green Metallix

I knew the Kryolan yellow and yellow based colors would start staining by now.  When I first started painting, all we used was Kryolan.  When kids would come up to us begging for free face painting, there was one artist who would offer to give them a free yellow dot on their nose.  Of course, the kids were very excited to get free paint in any form...the artist knew they'd still have a nice, yellow dot on their nose for church the next morning! ;-) He he...I know, not very nice.  I couldn't ever bring myself to do it. Other yellow based colors also seem to stain in Kryolan, like the green and orange.

I really LOVE my Paradise brilliant blues!!  But man, do they stain! I did a little stripe of it on my son's cheek earlier this week, and the stain stood up through a good scrubbing with a makeup wipe, a couple swimming lessons, baths, etc....several days later it's starting to fade finally!

Those TAG pearls are really beautiful, too, but also tend to stain.  I wonder if putting another base color underneath it would help?  I feel another experiment coming on!

24 hours later, the following additions to the list started to show stains:

- Wolfe Black just barely showed a slight stain.  I really don't think this would be noticeable unless you were specifically looking for it. I've heard many artists complain about Wolfe black staining, but I just didn't see it.  Although, a child's skin is likely more sensitive and may yield different results.

Here is a graphic showing ALL of the results, side by side, including 24 hours:

What I found interesting though, is that a couple colors seemed to actually drop OFF the list after 24 hours...Kryolan yellow no longer seemed to show up, and some of the TAG Pearl and Wolfe Metallix seemed to have less of a stain than they did when washed off at 12 hours.

In a nutshell...the Global paints seemed to perform the best as far as non-staining goes.  They washed off just as clean 24 hours later as they did 1 hour later.

The ones that left a very clear,visible mark after 24 hours include:
- TAG Pearl Purple
- Wolfe Neon Blue
- Kryolan Green
- Paradise Brilliant Dark Blue
- Paradise Brilliant Light Blue

I would say if you really want to be careful about staining, stay away from the TAG pearls & Paradise Brilliants in the deep blue/purple range.  I have not tested any of the other Paradise Brilliant paints, so I'm not certain if it's the blue pigment, or the Brilliants in general. Of course these are AMAZING colors, and I'd never remove them from my kit.  But, it might be a good idea to warn parents of potential staining just to be sure they don't have school pictures coming up in the next 24 hours, and to reassure them that some staining is normal and to be expected.

It also may be worth noting that after a 20 minute soak in the bath tub, followed by some pretty vigorous scrubbing with a soapy bath pouf, the two stripes still standing were the Paradise Brilliant blues.  Kindof wishing I had known this a week ago...I could have spared my kindergartener from 3-4 days at school with a blue line on his cheek!  ;-)

Have you done some stain tests yourself?  Please comment below and feel free to leave links to your own test results (or email me to have them added here)...I'd love to hear how other brands and colors compare, too!


Cindy the Face Painter said...

Skin types vary greatly. I've stained from many blues and greens, but never any yellows, oranges, pinks or purples. I've never had a stain last more than 24 hours, though. Maybe it's because I do the "wash, apply lotion, wait an hour, and wash again" routine. Takes the stains right out. :D

Gretchen Fleener said...

Yes, that's totally true, as I mentioned, the sensitivity of kids' faces vs my own skin could yield totally different would different complexions. Everyone reacts to things differently! Love the lotion idea...I'll have to give that a try! Thanks!!