Should You Apply Mica Powder Before or After Baking?

Mica powder has recently become a popular and trendy element essential to adding pizzazz to sculpture and art pieces. While mica powder has been around for quite some time, it has seen an increase in popularity with the rise of DIY home crafts.

What Is Mica Powder and How Can You Use It?

Mica powder is created from a shiny mineral mined from the Earth, known as mica. The mica mineral, usually found in a rock or stone form, is ground into tiny flakes, colored and reduced to a non-toxic powder. While mica powder can be created synthetically in a lab, it’s important to distinguish the powder from glitter, which it can often be confused with. Unlike glitter, mica powder’s sparkle and shimmer come from natural elements, not plastic sheets.

Known for its prominent presence in arts and crafts, mica powder is mostly used to add a sparkle and shine to projects. Because of its versatility and ease of use, mica powder can be found in a wide range of art pieces and products — from paper art to makeup to soap to polymer clay. The possibilities are endless!

When Should You Apply Mica Powder?

One of the most commonly asked questions about mica powder revolves around when to apply it to polymer clay. Unlike similar sparkling products such as glitter, mica powder should nearly always be applied to unbaked polymer clay. Since unbaked clay is soft and sticky, the powder will adhere naturally. 

Already baked your clay but still looking for that extra sparkle? Mica powder can be applied to baked clay with a thin coating of liquid clay or certain types of glue. This application process can sometimes be less effective, so for the best results, plan to apply mica powder before putting your clay in the oven.

How Do You Apply Mica Powder?

Adding mica powder to raw polymer clay can be as easy as applying the powder with a finger and smoothing it flat. For a more precise application, use a soft, wet paintbrush to burnish the powder flat onto the clay and enhance your craft’s shine.

Combine Mica Powder With One of Our How-To Projects

Looking for the perfect project to utilize mica powder with? Try combining mica powder with one of our how-to projects, such as a Liquid Sculpey® Sparkling Wrap Bracelet. To get more how-to projects and view our wide selection of polymer clay products, click here!

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