Q: On latex masks which are better, laces or zippers?
A: It's strictly a matter of taste. Zippers are quick and convenient, but some people like the tightness they can get with laces. Half my own personal masks have zippers, the other half laces. On a torso, I highly recommend using a zipper because with laces you will need an assistant to put it on and take it off.
Q: How do I see through the eyes?
A: There are holes in the pupils of the painted eyes. You can see them clearly in this image.
Q: Will contacts correct my vision if I need glasses?
A: No. The contacts I use have no correction, they are just for looks. For contact lenses to work they have to be in direct contact with your eyes. However, if you need glasses you might find the small eyeholes on the masks provide enough depth-of-field to improve your vision while wearing them (not however, good enough to drive, which you should NEVER do while wearing any kind of mask anyway).
Q: What is your most realistic mask?
A: The Susan and Jessica silicone masks are the most realistic mask I can make. You will need to wear makeup to blend your eyes in with the mask. Keep in mind that a mask is a mask and anyone looking directly at you at close range will probably take notice.
Q: Can you change the size of the D-cup torso breasts?
A: No, that's the size it is on the moulds and I can't change them.
Q: What are the torso breasts filled with?
A: On the Susan and Jessica silicone masks they are filled with removable foam inserts that I make myself.
Q: What kind of masks are the Rubbersisters wearing?
A: Jacline is wearing one of my Alice masks although she painted it herself (see a sample of my version of this design). Monica wears masks made by Paul Barrett-Brown which I do not sell. In fact, I don't believe Paul has made any for some time either.
Q: How do I measure my head?
Q: Can you create an original mask if I send you some photos?
A: I only need two measurements for a mask: your forehead and your neck. Measure the distance all the way around your forehead right about at your eyebrows. A cloth measuring tape is easiest, or just use a piece of string and then measure that. The same with your neck, measure all the way around.
A: No, you would need to hire a sculptor who could do that. A professional makeup artist might have the ability, but unless he was a friend, this would probably cost several hundred dollars.
Q: Do you take Paypal?
A: Yes, but because of PayPal's transaction fees I have to add $10-24 to the cost to make up the difference. I prefer VISA and MasterCard for payment.
Q: Do you sell wigs?
A: No. You can buy wigs online at Janet's Closet (co-owned by Marti), www.wigs.com, or www.wiggoddess.com. Myself, I'm not embarrassed to just walk into a local wig shop and buy what I want. What do they care? Note, most wigs bought off the shelf need to be cut and styled before looking good, so find someone who can do that.
Q: Are you working on any new mask styles?
A: The Jessica Silicone mask is new for 2013. If this proves as successful as the Susan, more silicone products may be on their way.
Q: Why don't you make gloves?
A: They just don't last and I like to sell things that are durable. My masks, treated well, should last you years. Gloves by their very nature wear out extremely quickly. They are also difficult to make and everyone has different sized hands. I choose to focus on selling something I can make well and can stand behind 100%.
Q: Can I make my own masks?
A: Yes, patience and determination are really all you need. Believe me when I say I had zero experience before making my first mask 10 years ago, merely desperation because I was never going to find the kind of mask I wanted for sale anywhere. Not to mention I cannot draw, sculpt, or paint. I recommend getting a basic book on mask making and makeup, they can explain this entire process much better than I can here. You really only need three things to get started: clay, plaster, and latex. All of these are cheap and incredibly easy to use (though the latter two can be a bit messy, having a place to work where expensive carpeting and furniture can't be damaged is a good idea). Start with something as simple as a styrofoam head and cover it in clay (I use oil-based #2 because it's fairly hard and never dries out). Begin sculpting features. This is where patience and determination come in. Everyone loves those masks that Diane Richards and Julie make. But you should also appreciate the many, many hours they spent to achieve those results (Julie, on average, puts in 100 hours on each of her masks). Once you have a sculpture you are ready to cast it in plaster. For a full head you need a two-part mould, front and back. Refer to a book about mould making for useful tips. Done correctly you will have a negative mould which you can pour liquid latex into and create masks. I've overly simplified the whole process but the point is there is no magic or special skill required to get good results. Merely (beating a dead horse one more time): patience and determination. Good luck!
Q; When are you going to make that mask movie you've been talking about?
A: At this time I don't think it is economically viable to make a feature-length mask movie because of the costs in involved and the problem of online piracy. However, YouTube.com has certainly opened the possibilities for something shorter just for fun, like Good Morning Joan.
Emeraald Joan Alice Lisa Sheila
Crystal Michelle Klassic Kerry