Cheap Alternative to Fixative

by Maggi Palmer
(Hampshire)

To fix chalk pastels use a cheap hairspray instead of the expensive arty fixative. Go to the 'pound shop' (or dollar shop) to stock up.


Also, use pastels to shade over acrylic paint - great for folds in fabric or shadows...

For small areas scribble your chosen colour onto a piece of paper to get a 'powder' then use a small fine dry paintbrush to apply and blend


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Good for young artists
by: Anonymous

you want to use an aerosal type spray or a mist type spray. you don't want to saturate the work... and careful to not over spray. it may yellow the work in time. that's why fixatives with an non-alkaline or non-alkaloid base are best to use. I do agree though for beginner works with students work hairspray is the cheapest and best to use to preserve work especially when you want to send those little masterpieces home to the parents.

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Great tip
by: Anonymous

This is a good tip for someone who is just beginning and for someone with a limited income. For work that one treasures, then a more expensive fixative can be used. I thank you for sharing this tip.....keep em coming.

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Fixative for pastels
by: Ann

I do not agree with using hairspray. I always use fixative from a reputable art shop. My art teacher says never ever use hairspray. Yes I know it is cheaper but if you value your paintings it is best to use proper fixative. Do not use too much fixative though, don't go too heavy as it will dull your colours, just a quick burst of spray will do. Good luck to you all. Ann in Adelaide

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hi maggi
by: Anonymous

thanks. that tip is really useful

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Hairspray v fixative
by:

Hairspray does last as a fixative, same thing really.

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Doubtful about the hairspray.
by: Barbara

I did hear that hairspray does not last. This question was raised in an American Artist magazine.

Apparently the cheap fix is not always the best. I have read many conflicting views on fixatives.

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hairspray or fixative
by: Blossom Hackett

Pastels are my main material for painting, but unfortunately where I live only hairspray is available; therefore I have not been able to use Fixative.
While using hairspray even at a distance the sharpness of the picture reduces even when used at a distance, specially while using Chalk & I love using chalk because its gives immense brightness.

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If your art isn't worth it...
by: Anonymous

If you don't value your time and your art, or your a beginner, then I suppose hairspray works... But notice it's called "Hair" spray? Not "all Purpose" spray? I know being broke is hard. And sometimes, just the simple idea that you can't just find what you need around the house is enough to put off the casual user. But a serious artist knows better... Your using the internet to make comments? Then you can go to Amazon.com, and order the right thing.

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Hoq to ruin your artwork
by: Anonymous

Hairspray is going to yellow over time and ruin your masterpiece.

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