Hey, resin novice. You’re in the right place. I get that starting with epoxy projects can be a little confusing. Don’t worry, I’ve got 15 years of resin experience with these hands and I want to help you too. Here are the top 12 questions I get from those new to making resin jewelry.
1. Is resin dangerous?
In a simple answer, it can be. But so can driving a car or cooking over a campfire. You should always take the appropriate resin safety precautions when working with any formula. At least always wear gloves and work in a well-ventilated area. Some resins need special ventilation equipment and a respirator. How are you supposed to know if you are using one of those resins? Review the resin kit’s safety data sheet.
BONUS: You should also review my 10 questions you should ask before purchasing a resin.
2. So how does resin harden?
When you buy a two-part resin kit, you are buying a bottle of resin and a bottle of hardener. When mixed, a chemical reaction occurs producing heat. This heat production allows the resin to cure.
BONUS: When you need your cured project in a hurry, learn how to get your resin to cure faster.
3. Can I save extra mixed resin for later?
Wouldn’t that be nice? Unfortunately, there answer here is no. Once you mix the resin, it’s ‘use it or lose it’ for making jewelry.
BONUS: Here’s a list of ideas for the times you have leftover resin.
4. Do all resins mix the same way?
Not exactly. While the techniques of how to mix resin is the same between resin kits, each kit has its own instructions. Follow them exactly. This includes paying careful attention to
*minimum and maximum mixing amounts
BONUS: If those terms don’t make sense to you, brush up on your resin vocabulary.
5. Can I mix and match resins and hardeners?
This is a hard no. Resins and hardeners are specifically formulated to go with one another. You must use the two bottles that come together in your kit.
BONUS: Learn more about what is resin.
6. Don’t you go a little overboard on this resin measuring and mixing procedure? I see people on youtube using the bottle cap or eyeballing it in a cup.
Absolutely. I have seen that too. I’m sure estimating like that works…at least part of the time. But you want to be sure your resin is mixed EVERY time you’re making jewelry. Otherwise, you can end up with sticky resin.
BONUS: Invest in good mixing cups and you can clean your mixing supplies to use again.
7. How do you get out bubbles?
Well resin beginner, the best thing you can do is prevent bubbles to begin with. That means you need to be careful in mixing. You aren’t scrambling an egg, but instead folding some frosting.
BONUS: Here are my 10 tips for getting bubbles out of resin.
8. The directions on the resin bottle said my resin castings would cure in 24 hours, but they are gooey. Do I need to let them sit longer?
You can, but it may not help. If your castings are not solid at the end of the cure time, it is unlikely that giving them more time will help them cure.
BONUS: Here are some of my resin troubleshooting tips to help you the next time to cast resin.
9. Why are my resin jewelry castings tacky?
Ah, another good topic. You might want to read my post why is my resin sticky (which includes a link on what you can do to fix it.)
BONUS: I’ve got lots more resin troubleshooting tips too for your other mishaps.
10. Can I bake resin in an oven?
I suppose you could, but it isn’t necessary provided your room temperature is warm enough. (But if you do this, don’t use it for food again and make sure the area is well ventilated.) Do not bake resin at temperatures of more than 150F.
BONUS: What’s the ideal resin temperature?
11. Can I use candy molds to cast resin?
It is so tempting isn’t it? But sadly, no. Plastic candy molds do not work well to cast resin. Silicone candy molds generally do better with resin, but you may not get a shiny finish when making your jewelry. If you want to try, make sure it is a mold you don’t ever care to use for candy again and use a resin mold release.
BONUS: Don’t use soap molds with resin either. Just don’t.
12. Can I use anything to color resin?
This is a big fat NO. Resin HATES moisture. You need to make sure whatever you’re using is dry or if it is a liquid, use as little as possible. Colors designed for resin work best.
BONUS: Here are five things you should never set in resin.
Want to learn more about resin jewelry making?
Then try my instantly downloadable book How to Make Resin Jewelry in Bezels. It gives you the essential details you need to know to make 15 resin jewelry projects — even if you have never worked with resin before. Buy now and get an email with a download link in minutes!
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