Beginner questions about resin jewelry makg

Where resin crafting is more than a passion, it is an OBSESSION

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I teach resin jewelry making classes here in my home state of Florida and get a lot of class participants that are new to making things with resin. I have been amazed at some of the questions they ask (good ones!) and decided that there may be some other new resin jewelry makers that may be interested in them as well.

I recommend taking the appropriate safety precautions when working with any resin. Epoxy resin is generally the safest (relatively speaking of course), but you should still wear gloves and work in well ventilated area. Some resins, like polyester and polyurethanes require special ventilation equipment and a respirator. If you are ever unsure about the safety precautions required when working with a particular kind of resin, ask someone at the retail establishment or call the manufacturer.

2.  So how does the resin harden anyway?

There is the resin plus the hardener. Each are two inert liquids by themselves, but when mixed, causes a chemical reaction to occur.

3.  Can I save extra mixed resin for later?

No, once resin is mixed, you must use it or lose it. It begins to cure once the two parts are mixed together.

No. Each resin and hardener has its own ratio. Follow directions on the label.

If they are all from the same manufacturer, maybe. I would check with the company first to see how compatible they are. If they are from different companies, probably not.

6.  Dont you go a little overboard on this resin measuring and mixing procedure?  I see people on you tube just using the bottle cap or eyeballing it in a cup.

Sure. I have seen that too. Im sure it worksat least part of the time. I sell resin jewelry to wholesale customers across the U.S. and have to be sure its right EVERY time. What I show you is exactly what I do when I mix every batch of resin.

That is a whole topic onto itself. I even made a you video onHow to get bubbles out of epoxy resin.

8.  The directions on the resin bottle said my resin castings would cure in 24 hours, but they are still sticky (or worse yet, gooey). Do I need to let them sit longer?

No, unfortunately, if your castings are still sticky at the end of the cure time, giving them more time will not help.

9.  Why are my resin jewelry castings tacky?

Ah, another good topic.  You might want to read my post on12 reasons why your resin didnt cure.

Check with the manufacturer, but most epoxy resins will cure faster in a 150 degree oven. (if you do this, dont use it for food again and make sure the area is well ventilated).

11.  Can I use candy molds to cast resin?

Not likely.  If you want to try, make sure its one you dont ever care to use for candy again.  Use lots of mold release.  Still, Ive found that they generally arent flexible enough to get out a resin casting.

12.  Can I use anything to color resin?

Theoretically, yes.  The problem is that resin HATES moisture.  You need to make sure whatever youre using is dry (powder pigments, dried flowers, etc.) or if it is a liquid, use as little as possible.

What other beginner questions do you have about resin jewelry casting?

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filed under:Resin Frequently Asked Questions

I am VERY new to the resin business, i.e. I havent even started yet, Im just waiting on a couple of supplies in the post. I am planning on making jewellery, coasters, soap dishes and gift items etc.

I ordered some resin, however I ordered Polyester Resin by mistake, but I realise I might have been better with epoxy resin.

I have been very concerned when reading up on how explosive MEKP is, should I be concerned?

I have also been reading just how bad polyester resin is for your lungs etc. Is this all types of resin or just polyester?

Im just wondering whether I should get epoxy instead and maybe sell the polyester stuff (as I havent opened it).

Any advice would be really appreciated.

Epoxy resin is what I recommend for beginners. It doesnt require some of the safety and ventilation equipment like the others do and is generally the easiest to mix. I dont have any experience with MEKP as a hardener, but do know it can explode. The polyester resin we sell comes with its own hardener. I have used the product and have had no worries about explosions, but I never use fire or flame around my resins. Polyester and some polyurethane resins are the ones that require special ventilation to work with. The advantages to both of these is that they cure very hard. I dont have much experience with polyurethanes except to say that I have tried using them but have found they are too difficult to manage in Floridas humidity. (Polyurethane resin REALLY hates moisture even in the air.) The polyester resin isnt something I would recommend for beginners. It has a short pot time (6 to 8 minutes or so) and of course the fumes. When I work with polyester, I wear a NIOSH approved respirator and vacate my studio for at least 12 hours after pouring. The big advantage though with polyester is that it cures glass hard, so you can polish it with the appropriate compound on a buffing wheel and get a super bright, shiny, glossy finish. If you dont think you will use the polyester resin soon, I would recommend trying to resell or sharing it with someone who may like it. We recommend only purchasing enough polyester that you can easily use within a 6 month period, so even if you keep it stored properly, it may not work when you go to use it years from now.

As long as you stay on top of it, acetone works fine. If you wait too long, and the resin kicks off, then use a heat gun to sftoen it up, and scrape the tools gently. It will come right off. Make sure that you dont scratch the tools when you clean them, gnarled tools are a detriment to ease of productivity. Always scrape with something SOFTER than the tool, to avoid scratching it. Also, use a respirator when doing this with a heat gun, the fumes are toxic.

Im looking to play with resin as well. I want to mainly make bangles to start. I have heard that epoxy resins arent suited for the thickness of chunky bangles and also that it isnt as clear as polyester resin. Is this true? What would you recommend to a newbie trying to make bangle bracelets? I did purchase castin craft polyester liquid plastic and catalyst, but The bracelet never cured and stayed ooey-gooey. There are so many brands and so many reviews out there, that I am overwhelmed with deciding what to use. Thanks

Great question! I always recommend beginners start with epoxy resin. It is generally the easiest to work with (you dont have to wear a respirator like you do with polyester resin) and usually has the fewest curing problems (shouldnt be gooey if you mix it right).

Epoxy resins can be as clear as polyester. I really like our Resin Obsession clear resin for this. It is meant to stay super clear for a long time!

Here is a link to where I break down the different resins along with pros and cons:

The big advantage the polyester resin would have is that it cures hard enough that you can polish it on a buffing wheel.

If youre still unsure about making a bangle bracelet, maybe try casting resin charms first to build up your confidence.

i made a bangle out of gedeo resinin a siligum casting, i made my self. i left it 24 hours and when i took it out of its mold it was very dull almost looked abit dusty when i felt the inside of the mold it was very smooth, as was the resin bracelet i used to make the mould.i dont understand why it was like this? it was slightly bendy when i took it out it hadnt completely cured but surely this would not affect the outside layer looking opaque!?

Was the silicone mold made from a highly polished template? Even if the mold feels smooth, if the template wasnt bright and shiny, you wont get that finish onto your casting.

Did you use a mold release? If you do, make sure it is completely dry before casting your resin.

I have been wanting to make charms using small cake sprinkles. They keep sinking. What am I doing wrong?

The sprinkles are heavy enough that they will sink in freshly poured resin. If you dont want them to sink, you may want to wait and put them on you casting once the resin starts to cure.

Please help ive worked hard and long on my resin jewelry and I have lines on my peices when I pop them out. They are fine lines from the molds. How can I buffer them out and make my jewelry shiny like glass? Also my resin has a yellow tint is this normal? Last but not least lol no matter what I do my resin has a billion microscopic bubbles the ones that rise I can pop and the big ones I can get but is resin supposed to look clear like water? And. What bail glue is fastest wnd what gloss is quickest? Ie; acrylic spray?? Thank you

1. To make your resin shiny when youre finished, you will either need to add another layer of resin or coat with a layer of our resin gloss sealer spray. 2. Some resins will have a yellow tint. It may normal for that particular brand youre using. 3. Resin should be bubble free when youre done. Make sure any items you are using in the resin are sealed as they may be reacting with the resin and causing bubbles. You can also watch our youtube video on how to get bubbles out of epoxy resin. The bail glue is recommend is the e6000 The clear gloss spray will dry the quickest on your projects

iv bin doing a LOT of Goggling but i can never find and answer for what Im looking for so i hope you can,

how (if possible) can you make a marble with resin? i have over 100 4-6 leaf clovers that i would like to embed in marbles, but i cant seem to find a way to do it without a flat side! if it is possible to do, how do i keep lines out of it(if 2 halfs are being glued) keep the clover positioned the way i like and centered (it may or may not be pressed) and get rid of or add bubbles?

This discussion on our forum may help: also have a video on our you tube channel on how to get bubbles out of epoxy resin:

hi there!! exactly how long do you let the mold release dry before pouring the resin? if i want a project with lots of glitter and color do i use a small amount of resin and a large amount of glitter? I LOVE ALL YOUR VIDEOS!!

@jacobsmomyatta If youre letting the release air dry, 30 minutes should be fine. Otherwise you can go over the mold lightly with a heat gun to speed up drying. The resin/glitter thing is mostly a personal preference. I put the glitter on the exposed surface once it starts to cure, so it wont sink. I like to put on a thick coat to make sure the surface is thoroughly covered with glitter. Glad to hear you find the videos helpful!

Im really new to resin jewellery but Ive had a jewellery website for almost a year now selling charm bracelets and necklaces. Im a bit clueless in the products I actually need to make resin necklaces and other jewellery, what are the products I need to make them, like hardeners and moulds and things. Im really interested in moving in this direction and I love your website and figured youd be the best person to ask

This article on our blog should help you get started with the basics:

hi im wondering, i dont know if you did answer it but, how can i take out resin charms from candy mold that arent fexible.i know it can be complicated

@Margo, you can try putting your mold in the freezer for a few minutes, then slapping it against a countertop to get the castings out. However, I have never had good luck getting castings out of candy molds, especially without using a mold release first.

I have been making jewelry with resin. I made a few pieces a couple of days ago, and didnt notice until now that the epoxy on 2 of my pendants dried lop-sided. Any tricks to even it out?

@Daphne, you can sand the resin with wet/dry sandpaper underwater to get off extra. Start with 400 grit and work your way down to something finer.

what causes epoxy resin to yellow. Im looking at making a sphere by pouring the resin into an old christmas ornament and then putting a diode into it to make it light up. Ive done this once with an epoxy resin i picked up at a hardware store i need more than 16oz its a 3 in sphere, and it turned yellow. i was going to use this sphere for my project but as i was soldering one of the diode pegs snapped off so i have to completely recast and would like to get the crystal clear effect im looking for

You need to start with a jewelry quality resin. The hardware store resins are usually designed to adhere stuff together, fill in holes, etc. They are less expensive than jewelry quality resin, but its because they arent as pure hence the yellowing.

Hi! Ive been doing resin jewelry for a few months now. I think I am doing it wrong! I use epoxy (I think) (Im not sure if I can post the brand lol) what is the texture that the piece should be? When my piece is dried its not sticky but it is flimsy, should it be like this? Im beginning to get discouraged

I am sooo new to this and I have scoured the web for answers about how to clean my resin cups after mixing. I never found an answer so I threw them out! I dont want to have to do that everytime so I need help! How do I clean those and how do I clean my mold?

Check out this video on cleaning your cups and brushes. It works great for getting it off your hands too!

Every resin is a little different. Epoxy resins dont cure very hard, compared to other resins, so it may be flimsy or rubbery when its demolded, especially if its a thin pour.

While your cups are still wet, wipe them out with acetone. Wear gloves while doing this.

Hello, I have a few newbie Qs please: I am very interested to learn how to use resin is it an expensive hobby in terms of equipment supplies? I am particularly interested in encasing dried flowers. You say resin hates moisture but is there anyway to encase fresh flowers in resin without losing the flower detail? Also, by any chance do know of anybody doing these types of classes in Ireland? It is difficult to find anywhere that holds classes for health safety reasons. Thank you

@Lucie, I think resin jewelry making is much more affordable to get started doing versus metalsmithing. Heres a tutorial on our site about embedding flowers in resin jewelry: I dont know of anyone teaching resin jewelry making classes in Ireland.

I like this post, enjoyed this one regards for putting up.

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I have a question I am making jewelry with Castin Craft Resin, and I have tried their Easy Cast as well. I have tried a bunch of variations but I always end up with the same issue. The surface of my castings is sticky, or takes and holds fingerprints. I have tried different kinds of molds, experimenting with different amounts of catalist, up to 20 drops per ounce and I still get these sticky castings. Is there a different product you can recommend? I have some pre-made molds and my own silicone molds, I seem to have the problem on the air-exposed side no matter what mold I use, either. I have a workaround, that works for smaller pieces, I dip them in poly urethane and for the most part this works, but sometimes they get sticky again later on. Any suggestions you would have would be welcome.

When you say Castin Craft resin, are you referring to the Castin Craft polyester resin? If so, it is a common occurrence for the surface exposed to air to remain tacky after curing. You will either need to sand this surface off or coat with a layer of our resin gloss sealer spray. you switch to an epoxy or polyurethane resin, you should be able to avoid this problem.

Hey there! I have a couple quick questions about casting before I begin. I want to make sure I do it right because this stuff is expensive!

I have a silicon mold prepared of an armless human bust which I plan to cast in resin. First of all, the amount of resin I will need to fill the mold is approximately 24 ounces; how many drops of catalyst would you recommend me mixing into the resin before pouring?

I also have a question about suspension. I am going to be suspending flakes of ash in the statue; will ash sink easily or can it be mixed into the resin? If it can be mixed, should I mix it pre-pour or allow it to set slightly in the mold? (preferably the latter as I think it would make a nicer effect).

I dont know what kind of resin youre using, so I would suggest consulting the manufacturer to see what they recommend. I would suggest mixing your ash in ahead of time. Once the resin starts to cure, it will be difficult to introduce the ash without introducing bubbles.

Hi i really like this site its always helpful. Im using resin alot lately , creating pendants. I have been using ice resin in molds bezels.

I have been gluing on bails, but id like to use screw in bails but i cant seem to find anywhere to help with this.i dont have a drill and i tryed to embed eyepin in the piece but it looked crap. please help!

@Lisa, there is a video about this on our youtube channel:

Hello! Im working with silicone resin and I have recently made dome shaped gems out of it. However when I painted on another layer to try and make it look shiny, all it did was make it look white and filmy, did I apply too much?

So that Im clear, you made gemstones out of silicone, then tried to put another layer of silicone on top?

I need to know what type of ventilator I will need to work with polyester?

Also If I desire a mold of exact measurements, but do not have the liquid silicone, what should I use?

I need a 2.75 x 5.5 x .25 to .33 thickness.

For polyester resin, you need to wear a NIOSH approved respirator for fumes. To get a mold to your specifications, you will need a template that size. You will then need to use silicone to make a mold of that template.

what about cleaning up? can you rinse resin that is still liquid down the sink? or should you invest in a ton of throw away stuff?!

@Kristine, I wipe out/off my utensils with a disposable paper towel. I then use acetone and paper towels to clean off as much resin as possible. Finish by washing your utensils with a good detergent such as Dawn dish soap.

Ive never done anything with resin, and would like to start. Iwas going to make some things for my sculptures and I wanted to know if, once it has cured, is it safe to bake resin in an oven? Such as high as 275F?

@Meagan, you will need to check with the specific manufacturer of the resin you want to use. The answer is most likely not.

Can I use a Sharpie or Copic markers on the resin and when I pour another layer of resin will the resin disintegrate the ink?

Good question! I havent had a chance to try this out yet, but I would expect the answer to be yes.

Im looking at developing some childrens toys out of resin, how safe is resin after it has been cured?

@Lisa, in general, cured resin is very safe. I probably wouldnt use it though for children three and under since they might be tempted to put it in their mouths. I would also check with the specific manufacturer of the resin you intend to use to be sure.

@sarah, Yes, dried flowers should be sealed first. If they are not sealed, they will either take up water stains from the resin, or the color will bleach out.

You may have already answered this but I was wondering if all dried flowers should be sealed with an acrylic spray before being embedded within the resin? What will happen if they are not sealed first?

Hi, Im pretty new to making resin jewellery and want to make bangles. I see some bangles have a colour on the this painted on after the bangle is made..and if so what paint product should I use? Also I have a clear silicone mould for my bangle but want the glitter flakes to be suspended evenly in the resin..and not all sinkhow do I achieve thisdo I have to do it in layers?..and if so will the lines show?.many thanks

@Jirral, you will need to color the resin before pouring. We have several options on our colorant section: make sure your glitter doesnt sink, you will need to mix in some of our microglitters. You can find them here: tutorial on our blog should also help you:

Hi, Im still having a terrible time getting a flawless surface on resin Ive had to sand (to remove mould marks). Im in the UK so not able to use your spray, but the spray varnishes I have tried I find hard to apply evenly without sputters or drips. Would really appreciate any suggestions!

Gedeo varnish (am using Gedeo resin) never seems to cure properly and goes cloudy and tacky when worn next to skin.

Currently trying sanding through the grades, then Turtlewax scratch remover, then a polishing wax. Surface feels amazing but hasnt regained full transparency. Next step buffing tool on the dremel, and if that doesnt work taking it back to sanding but increasing the grade (only have up to 1500 at the moment)

Resurfacing with another coat of resin this should be the best simplest approach in theory, but every time I try this it cures with missing patches and lumpy bits (I cover it to minimise dust but it always seems to bobble anyway). Seems to happen whether I dip the piece or paint on a thin layer.

It feels like Im asking the impossible as all the guides and info I find online suggest that everyone else has a solution either buffing (though opinions are divided on whether that works with epoxy!) or re-surfacing but I cant get either technique to work for me! Im not sure theres anything left you could suggest but if theres even one tip Ive not thought of Id *really* appreciate it!

How have you go on Erin? Im in the exact situation. I would love to know if you found solution and the perfect solution (with UK products).

@Erin, Im not familiar with Gedeo resin. I would suggest contacting the manufacturer and seeing what they recommend.

I am interested in using photographs to embed in my resin pieces. I am having a hard time reducing the size of the pictures to fit into the molds and bezels Im using. Any tips on tools or websites for cropping tools to shrink down the pictures without losing the details of the picture?

@Candice, I like to use There is a free version of the web based service that should allow you to do what you need.

Hi,I have one problem with my resin jewelry. After 2-3 months the resin looks more yellow and wrinkly, how to avoid these process?

@Antonia, it sounds like it may be the brand of resin you are using.

I just started using epoxy resin and everything has turned out pretty good so far. Except for have tiny little bubbles that are always there no matter whAt I do and the surface of my pendants are always opaque. I did some googling and found out about the sealer gloss spray so u ordered that and gave it a try and its pretty terrible. Makes everything even more frosty looking unless I do a million coats. And then once it is shiny like glass.. It holds finger prints so as Im adding bails.days later. Im ruining my pendants bc the gloss spray is taking on my finger print. Any suggestions on getting the surface glassy? I tried doing the new layer of resinbut it drips and runs no matter how thinly I do it and then my pendants are glued to the sheet I have them drying on.

@Amanda, I would suggest trying our Novus polishing kit:

I am having a hard time finding bangle molds that are what I want- so I did find some bangles to make molds out of that I like the only thing is they are slightly small is there any way to enlarge a mold when making it? thank you so much

@Dawn, unfortunately, you are going to have to find a larger template to make your mold from.

Hi. My first attempt was a 2cm bangle with a silicon transparent mold and epoxy resin. No bubbles! But all the hydrangea petals turned greenish and lost their purple color. Does it depend on the brand ot should I have sealed the fresh and real flower with anything?

@Bruna, you will need to seal the petals first. This tutorial on our blog should help:

Thanks for quick reqponse. I will try as you suggested. Does a doming rasin meams just put it in center and let it spread all by itself?

@Poonam, it does, but you have to use a resin designated as a doming resin. A doming resin will be thick enough that it will (hopefully!) stay on top and not run over the sides.

I used Epoxy Rasin to polish my Polymer Clay Jewelry as I wanted them to have glass like finish on a piece I made for a friend. It is cured well but it is having patches when it dried and streaks of the brush though I used a very soft brush to polish and patches on the pices just wasted it. what I did wrong?

@poonam, I would try again, but not use the brush next time. Drip a doming resin on and allow to cure. The Diamond Glaze may be a good choice for you to use as well.

i am using polyurethane resin. the surface of the resin after drying is sticky. Plz help me to get over this problem

@rahesh, It sounds like you have too much moisture either in the mold our your environment

Thank you Katherine for valuable reply.

I would like to know how exactly the moisture affects the resin to get sticky after drying it in oven at 60 degree for 2 hrs. Is there any chemical reaction happening between PU resin and moisture. Usually excess moisture leads to the formation of bubbles in the dome.

If youre talking 60 degrees F, that wont affect the resin at all. Its not warm enough.

@Rahesh, I dont have any experience working with polyurethane resin in that situation and afraid I cant comment.

Hi there! Just wondering, how long to you have to use the resin once the bottle is open? Does it go off quickly?

@Tamara, you need to use the resin in the stated pot time. Each resin is different, so check with the manufacturer as to what they recommend.

Hello I have been looking, but havent been able to find anything on how to make trolling or European style beads using resin? I recently got a bracelet that i want to make some for. preferably my own mommy milk ones but not sure the best way to go about it

@Tammy, Since beads to fit those style bracelets need a large opening. You will need to create a mold and cast your own resin beads.

Hello Ive been trying to make transparent coloured gems with Castin Craft Polyurethane Resin with a resin dye and a silicone mold, first attempt I put blue and yellow in and when it hardened it turned brown, then I put just blue in and it turned pink. What am I doing wrong?

@Devon, are you sure it was a polyurethane resin?

@tammy. I have been looking for the same thing. I dont want to send my milk somewhere since I produce so little. I havent figured out how to get it to mix with resin yet though. Have you?

@Katherine Swift, sorry I meant Polyester resin.

@Devon, did you include anything else besides dye in the polyester resin? What did you use for a mold?

@Katherine, no, just the catalyst that it came with and used a silicone mold and left the residual resin in the plastic mixing cup, it also turned brown and pink.

@Devon, it sounds like the resin is reacting with the dye. What brand dye did you use?

Ive been using easy cast a two part resin and im looking to make it look like milk. I cannot for the life of me find the right colorant to add to make it look like milk

@Grace, I would suggest using the Castin Craft opaque white pigment. just a tiny bit so it looks more milky than solid.

Hello I still have problems to get a high gloss finish, instead I used, abrassive sheets and then Novus I cant get te gloss I see in most of the pieces showed, could you recommend me please a tutorial or another polishing pasta or technique? Thanks in advance!!

@Carla, I would suggest using a light coating of our resin gloss sealer spray:

Hello, I have been using pebeo gedeo glazing resin, after two days of dry time I put some water on a cloth to wipe a keychain charm and the resin immediately turned foggy. I would hate for a charm to be destroyed if introduced to rain/water. Since I am new to resin is this a normal reaction?

@Kelli, it could be. I dont have any experience with Gedeo resin. I would suggest contacting them directly for tech support.

Thanks katherine, do you have any recommendations on what brands of doming resin to use for jewelry.

Never mind found my answer on your site

Im just about to start my journey in resin jewelry. Im hoping to use collage work and prints in metal bezels. I need the resin to be completely clear as to see the artwork I will be putting in the pendants/rings/etc.

My question is what resin would be best suited for this kind of work? As well as would the prints have to be sealed to ensure no ink bleeding? If so, what sort of sealant should be used when working with paper and resins?