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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For painting a vinyl doll head (for example a Barbie head) I assume you need some type of primer. I've looked for hours on Google about what type of primer you might use but I can't get a clear answer on this. So I'll ask here- does anyone know a good primer to use for acrylic paint on vinyl heads?

Sean
 

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I never use primer on the ones I repaint, I just wipe off the factory paint with acetone, give it a thorough wash afterwards and leave to dry, then spray on a layer or two of Testors Dullcote. (I know a lot of doll artists prefer Mr SuperClear but that isn't easy to come by over here)
I paint with acrylics, chalk pastels and watercolour pencils if that's any help.
 

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Whatever you do, just don't use oil painting. I tried once because I like oil painting better than acrylic. Gives better results.

I liked fine... At first. Over the following months, the paint started to be absorbed by the vinyl and she looked like a drag queen... Or like Ledger's Joker if you will! :lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I never use primer on the ones I repaint, I just wipe off the factory paint with acetone, give it a thorough wash afterwards and leave to dry, then spray on a layer or two of Testors Dullcote. (I know a lot of doll artists prefer Mr SuperClear but that isn't easy to come by over here)
I paint with acrylics, chalk pastels and watercolour pencils if that's any help.
So you spray on Dullcoat before you paint? I guess that would be acting as a primer, then? Or did you mean you spray that on after you paint?

Any recommendations for primers available in the US?

Sean
 

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Both! Spraying it before gives the vinyl some 'tooth' for the paint to stick to!

I'm in the UK so I can't really help you on that front I'm afraid but I think Dullcote is fairly easy to find across the pond!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Both! Spraying it before gives the vinyl some 'tooth' for the paint to stick to!

I'm in the UK so I can't really help you on that front I'm afraid but I think Dullcote is fairly easy to find across the pond!
So we're clear, we're talking about barbie type or Monster High type soft rubbery vinyl heads. The primer will stick to that material without cracking?

Sean
 

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Yes, and that's why I don't use primer! Dullcote is a (very) matte clear dealer, not a paint or primer.
Obviously if you're handling it a lot or squishing the head too much it won't do it much good but in general all the ones I've done have been absolutely fine. If you're a little unsure try it out on a secondhand doll first!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
There are a ton of resources for Barbie and Barbie type heads out there. :goodluck Barbie Repaint Tutorials
Yes, as I said I searched online before posting here but I just couldn't find a clear answer on what to use as a primer before painting the heads. Even though there are tons of video tutorials, etc, few really state clearly what materials are used or how. :( Now, after this thread, I assume a dull coat spray similar to Testers dull coat is sprayed directly on the heads prior to paint (and after to seal). And that acts as a primer. And Mr Superclear is basically the same thing? I guess? But how many coats, etc... I'm still not clear if the dull coat will crack if the head is bent (like putting back on a body for example). But anyway... thanks for the input. PS- I'm based in the US, so US options are required.

Sean
 

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Yes, as I said I searched online before posting here but I just couldn't find a clear answer on what to use as a primer before painting the heads. Even though there are tons if video tutorials, etc, few really state clearly what materials are used or how. Now, after this thread, I assume a dull coat spray similar to Testers dull coat is sprayed directly on the heads prior to paint (and after to seal). And that acts as a primer. And Mr Superclear is basically the same thing? I guess? But how many coats, etc... I'm still not clear if the dull coat will crack if the head is bent (like putting back on a body for example). But anyway... thanks for the input.

Sean
The dull coat may not crack but will definitely turn white and hazy when flexed too much.
 
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