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Experiment: Human Draculaura

Changing Monster High skin tone is the bane of many doll customizer out there. Different methods have been tried from dyeing the body using fabric paint or very careful/thin application of acrylic paint. More successful versions I’ve seen were accomplished through blushing, which I personally have not found the appropriate type of chalk brand for yet.

Since blush allows you a thinner, smoother cover, I tried it first which was not successful. I use Mr. Super Clear Flat to seal my work and found that if used on Monster High dolls, eventually flakes off. This only happens when sprayed on the body but not the face. I’m not sure if this is due to the plastic the bodies are made of or if there’s an existing finish over Monster High bodies that cause this. Alternatively, Mr. Super Clear Gloss works just fine and looks only makes the bodies a little bit shinier.

A human Draculaura?

A lot of folks seem to be interested in getting pale, human skin tones to create characters based on the Monster High books. I’m not familiar with them but if there’s a good candidate for fleshtone repaint, it should be Draculaura. In theory, blushing the doll in reverse would keep her joints pink and the rest in fleshtone.

My normal chalk pastels work well on the vinyl heads but doesn’t quite stick to the bodies. I looked for the next best pigment I could use which is make up foundation. Upon application, it still wouldn’t hold very well since the Mr. Super Clear flat would flake off or eventually form whitish blotches that would be visible even when you apply the pigment to it.

The pigment looked really good when applied to Draculaura’s face but I had to come up with an alternative for the body. I then tried using enamel paint since upon application, it generally looks smooth and solid. It sticks to plastic very well and it’s often used to repaint plastic car models.

Enamel paint and make up pigment

It looked great and worked like I expected. I was unsure with how well it would stick to the body so out of habit, I sprayed some Mr. Super Clear Flat. It looked really good but somehow I think applying Mr. Super Clear Flat weakened the paint’s integrity since at this point, it caused paint to flake off the joints.

To keep it all secured, I went ahead and applied Mr. Super Clear gloss at which point the brush strokes became visible.

I’m not sure if this is a good way to repaint MH bodies but I hope this was informative and helpful to other customizers. I’m not really sure if enamel paint is good for doll plastic as I’ve read that it isn’t good for doll repaints but the reasons why not were never stated. I’m assuming enamel paint isn’t recommended for the faces since it is a lot harder to erase when you make a mistake. From experience, enamel paint works fine on hard plastic.

Below are additional photos of the results of the experiment:

Peeling paint in the knee joints…

A spare body previously experimented on…

Both enamel and acrylic aren’t very good for the shoulder joints. The color disparity looks bad in the photo but it’s actually hardly noticeable in reality. Draculaura’s skintone looks like blush. This can probably look better with a bit more blush work.

If you can live with minor peeling along the shoulder and knee joints, it’s not bad.


This Post Has 7 Comments

  1. One of my earliest dolls was afleshier toned Draculaura, I did it completely using pastels. They have to be soft high pigment built up layers and sealed in at each layer,
    I have also used this technique on two Cleo dolls to get different skin tones……

    1. That sounds good but seems like trying to get the clay off would be a hassle. You can easily hide joints via image editing programs for doll poses. Thanks for the suggestion! =)

  2. This was helpful! I like enamel for the body, I seal it with Triple thick and there is no flaking. I have yet to find something that will withstand the joints though. I’m thinking probably the chalk pastels might work there.

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