Alcohol Ink and Hair Spray

This peek at Pinterest involves another interesting alcohol ink technique…this time, with the addition of hair spray. The original post is from, and I decided to use basically the same ink colors for my experiment.  The end product makes a great decorative background sheet for scrapbook layouts, greeting cards or picture framing.  You’ll need: piece of glossy card stock, alcohol inks in at least two or more colors, hair spray, clean cloth or baby wipe and plastic gloves.


You’ll want to place your card stock onto a craft sheet or other protective service, to work on. (I used a scrap piece of cardboard and a paper towel.)  First, thoroughly saturate the card stock with hair spray, until it puddles on the surface.  Have your ink colors open and ready to go, because you have limited working time before the ink colors start to dry. (The above demo is a second attempt…due to what I stated in the previous sentence!)  As soon as you’ve finished spraying the card stock with hair spray, begin dropping your ink colors onto the surface.  With your plastic gloves on, use your finger to swirl the colors together.  Clean your finger with the cloth or baby wipe after each swirl on the card stock, to prevent the colors from becoming too muddy.  Let dry naturally, without the assistance of a dryer or heating tool.  The original poster warned against bad fumes…and I just took her word for it. Once it’s close to being completely dry, spritz one more time with hair spray.


The resulting design produced some interesting effects.  I noticed that the hair spray caused one ink color to separate slightly and become granular on the surface: I personally love that effect, but the original poster’s was more smooth and blended…very similar to melted ice cream!  The outcomes with this technique will vary greatly; depending on amount of hair spray, ink colors used and drying time, but all should produce successful abstract patterns.  I imagine you’d get equally interesting designs by using Yupo paper instead of glossy card stock…but’s that’s for another day! 

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