How do I use Skin Illustrator?

Alcohol Use & Color Saturation with Skin Illustrator

Skin Illustrator is used many different ways by many different artists. It was designed to be used like you would use watercolors – that is, overlapping layers of translucent color. That said – it is also designed to be used, in some cases, alone or in conjunction with PAX, RMG, Cream, and/or Aqua colors, – often going back and forth between those mediums – and will bind those layers together. 

There are 3 basic methods of activating individual cells in the palette. 

  1. Activator sprayed directly into the cell.
  2. Activator in a dropper bottle – delivering drops of Activator into the cell.
  3. Wetting your brush in Activator, then creating a slurry in the cell with your wetted brush (this method on hot summer days can evaporate quickly. You’ll have to adjust your timing and amount of Activator). 

How much you wet the cell and much color is liquified in the cell will determine the density of the color you apply to the mixing palette or directly to the skin. If mixing multiple colors – the art of keeping your brush, the color cell  and your mixing palette as wet as you need is an art unto itself. Once it dries on the mixing palette, the colors can be reactivated with more Activator.

Remember, the longer you activate the color cells with Activator the more dense the color will become. If you want a sheer color – activate the cell for less time and with more Activator. Hot temperatures can increase the amount of Activator needed to keep the material activated.

Application Techniques

There are many ways to get Skin Illustrator onto the skin or appliance:

  •     Brushes – Flat, round, stipple, synthetic, natural, etc.
  •     Makeup Sponge, Torn Makeup Sponge, Sea Sponge
  •     Airbrush
  •     Spattering/flicking    Airbrush,  Dye brush, Tooth Brush
  •     Black/Orange/Red Stipple Sponge
  •     Fingers
  •     Cotton swabs, etc.

Safety With Alcohol     

Alcohol is highly flammable. All cautions should be taken that heat sources do NOT come in contact with ALL alcohol, alcohol-based liquid makeup and alcohol-based products. 

When Airbrushing Skin Illustrator liquids make sure you have plenty of ventilation.   Be extra cautious when spraying around the eyes and nose – have the actor/model close their eyes and hold their breath.


Local ventilation in a trailer or confined space – for years artists have used box fans with inexpensive A/C filters appropriately sized for the box fan to draw fumes away from the actor. In some instances, we use a second box fan on low behind the artist to facilitate an air flow past the actor and toward the 1st box fan. Opening doors and windows helps to facilitate air flow.

What are the different palette sizes?

Five Cell: 5 x 1.5 in (12.7 x 3.81 cm)

On Set: 4.25 x 3.5 in (10.795 x 8.89 cm)

Full Size: 7.25 x 3.5 in (18.415 x 8.89 cm)

What is the best way to remove Skin Illustrator products?

Skin Illustrator products can be gently taken off using any of the Telesis IPM Gel, Telesis Beta SolvTelesis Super Solv or Telesis Makeup Remover from PPI Premiere Products Inc.

Glazing Gel Cleanser is also available for removal of gels and Glazing Sprays.

Fleet St Pegworks Tooth Lacquer can be removed from the teeth by gently brushing with toothpaste.

How can I buy Skin Illustrator Products?

All of our products can be found for sale at our distributor, PPI Premiere Products Inc. — or contact PPI to find your nearest distributor.

Who should I contact regarding current orders?

For inquiries on current orders please contact PPI Premiere Products Inc. at:

[email protected]

Do you ship overseas?

Yes.  Premiere Products Inc can ship internationally — a dangerous goods (DG) shipping fee may accrue.

For further details on international sales please see PPI’s website

Do you have distributors in other countries ?

Yes. Please contact Premiere Products Inc to find your closest distributor.

I can't get 99% alcohol. Can I use 91% alcohol? Can I use 70%?

Skin Illustrator is designed to be used with it’s proprietary mixture of alcohols as approved by the FDA. It’s sold as Skin Illustrator Activator.

However, that said, so as not to cut out any artist who either can’t afford another alcohol or doesn’t have immediate access to Activator, you can use 99%. We find 99% a bit too harsh for applications around an actor, but with good ventilation (a necessity) you might not force everyone from the trailer. We’ve had some reports of success with 91% alcohol. But be aware, unscrupulous retailers will sometimes cut their alcohols and sell them to an unaware artists or companies which will inhibit Skin Illustrator from working properly. We found adulterated 99% Alcohol happening in the Vancouver area of Canada in 2015, as well as other countries around the world. Be aware!

Never use 70% alcohol (rubbing alcohol).

My colors are cracking, bubbling and/or showing signs of shrinkage — is there something wrong with them?

Due to the high pigment content and lack of unnecessary fillers in the Skin Illustrator color system, cracks, bubbles and any shrunken appearance that may occur in some dried color cells does not affect the quality or performance of the product in any way.

What is the proper way to use Green Marble ‘Ager’, and what's the best way to remove it at the end of the day?

Ager is best applied with a flat synthetic brush. Stretch the skin on the area of the face to wish to affect, while holding the skin, load your brush (not too much) and apply the material in the direction of the wrinkle, be quick and sure with the stroke not allowing the material to leave heavy striations or trails that may take longer to dry than the rest of the application. Use a hairdryer to speed drying. Apply as many coats as you think necessary then powder before you release the stretch. Some have chosen to powder in-between each application, but we choose not to, to help control buildup. 

Removal is done with Telesis IPM Gel™. The Gel stays better on the face. Using your fingers and fingers only, No Powder puffs, No tissue, nothing but fingers, apply the IPM Gel and moving your finger in small circular motion work the material on and around the face. Continue the motions until you feel the Ager material breakdown, then using warm damp towels, wipe off  the Ager and IPM Gel, repeat until residue can no longer be felt, apply Moisturizer and/or EDAP.

For more, see our page on Green Marble SēLr Aging Techniques.

Do you perform animal testing?

Cruelty Free and VeganAbsolutely not!  

Skin Illustrator is the only alcohol-activated material that is Vegan-approved and allowed to display the Pink Bunny.

How do you activate your metallic (Alchemy) palette?

Due to the nature of the pigments used in the Alchemy Palette the activation can be a bit longer than other Skin Illustrator palettes. The easiest way is to apply a thin layer of Activator or 99% alcohol into the desired color cell – too much alcohol will make it too thin and not enough alcohol won’t activate the cell enough. and may need a bit more.  Close the lid  (no need to snap it shut) – keeping the palette horizontally level. Wait at least 5 minutes, then open the lid and activate the color with your brush. 

Can Skin Illustrator be used with a sunscreen?

Yes, choose a film-forming alcohol-based sunscreen and allow it to dry thoroughly before applying Skin Illustrator.

What should I use to color teeth?

Fleet Street Pegworks Tooth Laquers are specially designed temporary pigments safe to use on teeth, most veneers and crowns. It is not recommended to apply colors from the original Skin Illustrator line as they are created for external use on the skin only.

What do I do when I run out of a color in a palette?

All palette colors can be purchased as a liquid concentrate. They can then be poured into a palette cell – frequently stir while using a blowdryer on the cell will dry the color quicker and more evenly.

These concentrates should not be confused with the standard liquids.  The liquids are a thinner consistency to allow it to be sprayed through an airbrush gun.

What makes Skin Illustrator products different from other makeups?

Skin Illustrator is manufactured and distributed by Premiere Products, Inc – FDA licensed, cruelty-free and Vegan approved.  Skin Illustrator is a color system created by a professional makeup artist.

What does "fumo" mean?

Fumo is an Italian painting term meaning smoky, translucent or wispy.  So, those colors designated as ‘fumo’ are created translucent.

Can I paint AcrylStains directly in the mouth?

No, AcrylStains are solvent based and not for cosmetic use. AcrylStains are not safe to use directly in the mouth. Once you have painted your dentures with AcrylStains and they have had sufficient time to dry then they are safe for the mouth. See our AcylStains page for more information.

For application directly in the mouth, Pegworks Tooth Lacquers can be used in conjunction with AcrylStains that match in color.

Can I use AcrylStains on contact lenses?

Acrylstains is ONLY to be used on acrylic pieces such as fake teeth or fake eyeballs.  NEVER use Acrylstains directly in the mouth or on contact lenses.

For more information, see our AcylStains page.

Can I use AcrylStains with other dental stain products like Minute Stains?

Yes! AcrylStains are compatible with most color systems available today.

For more information, see our AcylStains page.

My AcrylStains are getting thick. What should I do?

AcrylStains can begin to thicken over time. Use a few drops of the included thinner to extend the life of your AcrylStain system as needed.

For more information, see our AcylStains page.

I saw an item I can't find for sale anywhere. How can I get ahold of it?

Contact Premiere Products Inc. to get information about that item. However, some palettes are created exclusively for artists/schools/companies and they are the only ones allowed to sell or distribute them.