I always thought i had to cover my sculpey things with the stuff they make for it, but now im gonna go get some 99 cent nail polish...
Just a small warning about this... some kinds
of nail polish will work on baked polymer clay, but some won't
. .. IOW, those which are water
-based are fine (acrylic), but those that are petroleum-solvent based aren't.
What will happen with those is that they may look fine in the beginning, but they either won't dry thoroughly, or they will actually begin to eat into the polymer clay below, making the finish feeling sticky ...over even more time, they will begin to dissolve the clay big time and make a gooey mess.
These changes may not be visible from the surface for up to 6 months though, depending on different variables.
Here's some info from my website about using fingernail polishes with polymer clay that may help:acrylic fingernail polish does fine on polymer clay
.....however, "enamel" nail polish is usually a no no, and can turn sticky up to 6 months later
.........(whether a polish is acrylic is often indicated somewhere on the bottle, but may not be)
...nail polish intended for use on fake acrylic fingernails should be fine, I assume (??)
...or should be possible, if necessary, to coat first with an acrylic liquid (even thinned white glue), and then apply the enamel polish over it (only on those areas protected by the acrylic though)
...a good brand of fingernail polish also won't yellow (I use Revlon, for example, and I have pieces 6 years old that are holding up a look great) ...some polishes will turn yellow though, especially cheaper brands (prob. from too much exposure to ultraviolet light?)
...btw, Maybelline Wet Shine is an acrylic polish, so it's safe to use... I've been using it on clay and painted wood items for about a year. No stickiness, it doesn't peel off and it doesn't seem to change color. Connie
....... love the look of Wet Shine, very wet looking and glassy
....... I also want to use it as a top coat, over Varathane (large areas are easier to cover with the Varathane first) , and also over Polyglaze because it requires a sealer to avoiding becoming cloudy from body oils or moisture)
........Wet Shine it adds that wet look that really makes the piece and colors pop ...a dichroic glass look is helped by the additional glossiness. Nancy
Btw, sparkly or fancy nail polishes work fine as long as they're acrylic
, but there are other ways
of getting the same great result:
1...use metallic or other fancy acrylic paints
2...make your own metallic or glittery paints
by mixing things like metallic mica powders (Pearl Ex, etc.) or embossing powders, or microfine glitters (the ones intended for use on fabrics so they're heat resistant), and other things into some kind of clear acrylic as a carrier.
......clear acrylic carriers would include things like Future (a floor polish) and Varathane (a brand of wood finish) --commonly used by clayers because they work well and are cheap, Fimo or Sculpey's brands of clear finishes, white glues (applied thinly, will dry perfectly clear), and UTEE or acrylic gel mediums (though they're more easily scratchable)... also things like liquid polymer clay (though that must be baked again since it will never "dry"), two-part epoxy resins (though must allow those 24 hrs to cure), etc.
(Most of those will be naturally glossy, some won't)
If you want to check out all the clear finishes
that work well with polymer clay (and warnings about some that don't), check out this page:http://www.glassattic.com/polymer/finishes.htm
And for using things like metallic powders or "inclusions" of glitters as "paints," look here:http://www.glassattic.com/polymer/paints.htm
(...click on As Paints
Be aware though that no
sealer or finish is ever needed
on baked polymer clay unless there's something that won't stay on by itself when applied to raw clay (and there aren't a lot of those things, if properly applied).
(and btw, sanding-and-buffing are another way to get a glossy finish on clay if you just want to make the clay itself shiny or give it a nice sheen)