Friday, 28 April 2017

Bicarbonate of soda - a warning!

Well it looks like my love affair with bicarbonate of soda as a texture medium has come to an abrupt end!

While getting my minis ready for tomorrow’s showcase I noticed a dusty white bloom on some of them! It has affected some minis where I’ve used the bicarb as a texture medium in, for example, rust or corrosion effects but it was quite pronounced. Most alarmingly although it’s been stable and unchanging for at least a year this all happened in the last few days. My best guess is that it is down to a change in humidity.

A dusting off with a clean dry brush retouching of the paint has fixed the issue for the moment but I’ll have to keep a very close eye on these minis.

As I’ve been promoting the use of bicarb and singing it’s praises I thought I’d better put this warning out quickly! I’m going to monitor the situation closely and look into a permanent fix (if needed) and alternatives.


  1. i used flour, baking soda and other household powders
    but pigments seem to be the best for me.

  2. It is not an inert substance. It doesn't always go wonky, it when it does, it seems to all go at once. I know a modeller who used it frequently​ for snow, and came home one day to a display cabinet full of Russian tanks in puddles of yellowish goo.

    I've found that glass microballoons work well as a substitute in most situations.

  3. Thanks a lot for the warning!
    I noticed it sometimes turns yellow over time. but haven't experienced anything like this.

  4. I had a similar situation with salt weathering. Even now after multiple coats of paint and rinsing repeatedly the salt keeps bleeding through.

    Was the bicarb just for weathering? I've been using baking powder with my super glue, doubt that will bleed through the cyanoacrylate.

  5. Thanks for the quick update. The community appreciates it!

  6. Sorry to hear that. A suggestion is to use pigment powder like e.g. from MIG. I use it in the same way you used Bicarbonate of soda and never had an issue.