I first started using this air-dry clay back in 2005, I believe, and this stuff was like gold to me. I finally was making so gorgeous masks and it was easy to use and durable once dry. It dried so smoothly with very little shrinking and looked very much like plastic. Took acrylic paint beautifully.
Well, over the years I've noticed the company switching to different materials...the smell of the clay has changed, the overall texture, the finish as it dries and once dried, etc. The quality has suffered and the price has been slowly climbing.
For a 8.75oz. tub I pay anywhere from $8 to nearly $10 retail, which tends to last me one mask -depending on how much detail and the size of the mask, of course.
I wouldn't mind the price if the quality wasn't slowly plummeting.
Now, I don't get a smooth finish as it dries and it doesn't adhere to itself the same way it use to.
Here you can see how rough it looks once dried...the 2nd mask, to the right, didn't dry well at all..some of the edges are turned up rather than drying flat to the base beneath it. And the edges aren't the least bit smooth where I tried to blend the clay together:
Further, and unfortunately, this has be a draw-back of this clay since I first started using it, but as I keep so few of my own masks...it's not something I'd be able to notice.
-I have a Fairy mask I made back in 2008 that I have held onto and I've noticed that despite the fact that I made it about 5yrs ago now...the mask still wants to shrink inward at the edges. Unfortunately, even years later, this clay doesn't hold it's shape.
Not a big deal if you are making some like a doll, perhaps...but when it's something you'll be wearing, it's a huge deal.
It's still a decent product, but it's no longer worth the cost or the hassle for me, unfortunately.
I think I've bought my last tub of this product.
I have seen some recipes online for making your own air-dry clay:
I will be trying one or two of these out myself before too much longer in the hopes that maybe these will work better than the store-bought air-dry clay.
-and at that point, I will post back with my results.