Beauty and Makeup Glossary

Makeup Glossary
It can often feel as if makeup artists have a vocabulary that is entirely different. It’s easy to get lost inside the technological jargon, from filming words, goods, techniques and more acronyms than you can shake a stick at.

There are a lot of words (Beauty and Makeup Glossary) and instruments for makeup packaging out there, and even as beauty editors, it’s convenient for us to get our konjacs blended every so often with our beauty blender sponges. (TBH, I didn’t even know what a konjac was until I wrote this article.) So, I chatted with a few L’Oréal chemists to get their best definitions in Beauty and Makeup glossary form to properly sift through makeup packaging terminologies and tools. Find the 15 make-up terms relating to tools, packaging and all applicator-esque stuff in advance.

It can often feel as if makeup artists have a vocabulary that is entirely different. It’s easy to get lost within the technical jargon, from filming terms, products, techniques and more acronyms than you can shake a stick at.

So here at the MDC we thought it would be helpful to write a Beauty Makeup glossary to break down all of those technical terms.

Beauty and Makeup Glossary

So, we figured it would be useful to write a Beauty and Makeup glossary here at Makeupdealsandcoupons (MDC) to break down all those technical words.

We would love to add and broaden this list, so please let us know if you feel like there are any words that you would like to see below!


Acetone – A colourless solvent used in many nail polish removers to clean glue off hair lace which is an ingredient. It can only be used in well ventilated environments, because of the fumes produced. Flammable, so that it needs to be processed and used away from direct sunlight and heat.

Action – This is the cue for the main actors to start.

Activator – A special proprietary blend of ethanol and isopropynal alcohol, typically referred to as the PPI product, and is necessary for activation of all Skin Illustrator palettes.

Afro Hair – A synthetic fibre that replicates Afro Caribbean hair’s consistency. In addition to Pros Aide cream, it can be trimmed and used to create natural stubble effects and fill out beards.

Alginate – It absorbs water very easily and is commonly used in life-casting and as a mold making material in dentistry, derived from seaweed and kelp.

Anaplastology – The art and science of using artificial means to repair a malformed or missing portion of the human body.

Angora fur – Angora goat hair or rabbit hair.

Animatronics – The mechanical technology used for animating marionettes or other film figures.

Anthropometry – the systematic study of the human body’s dimensions and proportions.

Appliance – Another name given to a device for prosthetics.

Armature – an open frame on which clay or similar material is moulded into a sculpture.

Astringent – A skin-cleaning and toning cosmetic oil. E.g. Hazel’s witch.

Attagel – A mineral of clay used as a thixotropic agent, the active ingredient contained in the earth’s fullness. Green Marble sealer may be used as an old age stipple when blended with PPI.

1st AD (Director Assistant 1st) –

Easily mistaken for the director because they’re usually the one doing all the yelling and sending their signals to others. When you are on stage, they are the person in command. Listen to what they mean very carefully.

Airbrushing – A method used using an air compressor and an airbrush to apply a variety of makeup (e.g. foundations, blusher, eye brows, temporary tattoos, tanning colors, coloring special effects). To produce a fine mist of tiny droplets that settle on the skin, the compressor moves the liquid makeup solution through the airbrush’s nozzle.

APHAMA – The advanced hair and makeup artists’ association.

Applebox – A box made of solid wood or plywood that can bear weight. These can be of different sizes, the smallest of which, since it is almost flat, is often known as a ‘pancake.’ (Illumination/Grip)


Bald Cap – A cap that is adjustable to establish the illusion of a bald head. It is usually made of latex or vinyl.

Baking – The word sometimes used by bloggers or youtubers, and has been used for years in the drag community, refers to five to 10 minutes of letting translucent powder sit on your face, allowing the heat from your face to set your base and concealer and then dust it off your face, leaving you with a creaseless, flawless finish.

Back Fall – A hairpiece that is worn on the back half of the head, as the name implies, using the wearer’s own hair on the front to dress in the back fall. Nice for cases where a front hair lace will be noticeable on a wig. A back fall adds length, texture or colour (sometimes just known as a “fall”). The front suits to the head on the crown area just above the ears and continues down to the nape.

Backlot – Americanism, Americanism. An open air section of the studio where sets can be installed.

Backlight – A light which is normally placed behind a subject to illuminate the hair and shoulders of the subject without lighting the front of the subject. (Illumination

BB Cream – BB stands for beauty balm or blemish balm and is a form of cream makeup. Promoted to substitute serum, moisturiser, primer, base and sunblock as an all-in-one facial product (if it has an SPF). As a tinted moisturiser, or as a standard foundation, it can be worn alone. In the 1960s, German dermatologist Dr Christine Schrammek initially invented it to preserve the skin of patients following surgery.

BECTU – Union of the media and entertainment

Bluescreen – Also referred to as chroma-key or Greenscreen. Filming takes place against a backdrop of blue or green. A different position may then be substituted for the history.

Bone saw – In order to provide smooth, controllable cuts, a controlled rotary oscillation is typically applied to a specialized cutting implement.

Breaking down – Reefers to the packing and cleaning of a station for makeup artists, usually applied at the end of the work day.

Broken Lunch – It is an extra charge under the FAA arrangement if you are not granted a meal break within a specified time.

Boardwork – A phrase used to describe a postiche’s act of making.

Bondo – A mixture of Pros Aide and cab o sill to make a paste that is used to blend appliance seams and edges.

Box Mold – A type of mold created by forming a box shape and filling it with rubber mold. One or two pieces may be one.

Breakdown makeup – The opposite of makeup for appearance. They are also used to make a person appear sick or unwell.

Brush coat – The first thin material coating that is brushed into the mold or onto a sculpture to gather data before reinforcing layers are constructed.

Brush up layer – The first layer of material that is applied to gather data using a brush.

Buck – Another term from a lifecast for the stone positive of a face.

Burlap – A loose weave cloth used in the outer layers of gypsum molds as a supporting material, makes stone moulds stronger and less likely to break.

Bladder – an inflated or hollow flexible bag or chamber for a blood gag, often made from latex to house blood.

Block – A block is used in wig making and wig dressing as a head- or chin-shaped piece. There are two distinct types: maleable blocks, made of canvas filled with cork and used for washing, setting and dressing postiche, and solid wooden blocks used in wig making. Both block styles come in two different forms: head-shaped (used for wigs) or chin-shaped (for facial hair) and are referred to as a block of the chin.

Bleeder – An escape hole inside a mold for air trapped.

Blend Line – The point at which the prothetic or appliance tapers into the real skin.

Blood joke – A live blood effect pumping camera, often using prosthetics, makeup and camera/lighting set up to mask realistic settings such as pneumatic bladders or squibs. Blood gags can be as plain as oozing or as difficult as a head that explodes.

Block Mold – Sometimes a two-piece mold of rubber.


Cabo patch – An acrylic adhesive paste used with a spatula and combined with a wet sponge to blend thick edges into foam latex.

Cab o sill – Fumed silica used as a thickener is untreated. Cabosil is a registered trademark of Cabot Corpation.

Case mold – When closed and clamped together, a ridged multi-piece mold encases a sculpture.

Carcinogen – Any material, radionuclide, or radiation that causes carcinogenesis, the development of cancer.

CGI – Imagery created by a computer.

Cholestrol cream – During life casting, hair conditioning cream is also used as a realisation agent on hair.

Cold Foam – A two part urethane foam, soft or ridged, that does not need heat to heal.

Collagen is a protein present in bones and tissue that is fibrous. When water breaks down, it becomes gelatin.

Call time – The time you must report to the location you mentioned. You’ve got to be on schedule.

Call sheet – Usually produced by the 2nd AD, a daily update. Given to the crew so that they know what they are shooting that day.

Camouflage – A makeup product or procedure specifically developed to fix issues with skin pigmentation such as vitiligo, scarring and birthmarks. Makeup products are typically a highly pigmented cream, so it covers well and only a small amount of product is required.

CC Cream – CC Cream is a marketing term invented in the aftermath of the Blemish Balm Cream or Beauty Balm marketing term. Some brands use ‘CC cream’ to mean Color Control cream, or Color Correction cream, and some brands claim to decrease the appearance of redness or saltiness of the skin or enhance the uneven tone of the skin.

Contra-indication – Anything that may cause an adverse reaction (e.g., an element or substance).

Compressor – A machine used at increased pressure to supply air or other gas, e.g. for powering an airbrush.

Continuous working day/night – A shooting day or night where you will not be given a meal break, but while filming continues, a running buffet is offered.

Proven Booking – On this day, this is a strong commitment to work. On that day, do not take on another task.

Chroma Key Green – Chroma Keying is a method used by substituting a color or a color range in one frame with that of the other frame to merge two frames or pictures. In the film industry, it is also used to replace the backdrop of a scene by using a blue or green screen as the original background and having the actor in the foreground.

Craft Facilities – Station for tea, coffee and water.

Cup Blocks – Wooden blocks in the middle that are used to prevent the wheels of light stands from rotating with a dish or indentation. (Lighting/ Grip)

Split – An editing effect in which the instantaneous transition from one shot to another is achieved by linking the two shots together so that one image on the screen immediately replaces the other. This is a cue to stop filming, too.

Continuity – A series that takes more than one day to film, or more than one shot. Therefore, it is important that nothing changes to interrupt the scene’s continuity.

Chop strand – A type of reinforcement used in fiberglass is a chopped strand mat or CSM. It consists of randomly laid glass fibers over each other and held together by a binder. Usually, it is manufactured using the technique of hand lay-up, where sheets of material are placed in a mold and brushed with resin.

Collodion – A substance that is used to manufacture skin scars. A solution consisting of nitrocellulose and acetone pulls and retracts the skin until the acetone evaporates, causing an invenerated scar.

Condensation – Silicone Cure Also known as silicone tin cure and vulcanization at room temperature or RTV silicone. Used extensively to make mold.

Core – The constructive internal component of a multi-piece mold.

Cream time – When dealing with foams of urethane, cream time is the liquid’s working time until it starts to foam.

Cure – The chemical reaction that induces the setting or hardening of materials such as silicone, urethane and plaster.

Cyan – A color that is blue-green, complementary to red.

Cyclorama – Permanent background designed in a studio to create a shadowless, unending backdrop that is almost always coved or angled at the floor line. (Lighting/ Grip)

Cyberscan – A tool used to transcribe a physical object into a digital model by measuring it accurately with a laser. Usually used for sculpting purposes, to scan actors or maquettes.

Crepe hair – fake hair used in stage makeup for producing artificial beards, sideburns, etc., typically of plaited wool or vegetable fibers. Widen. Extend. So-called crepe wool, too.


Decalcification – Loss of bone or teeth with calcium.

Dental acrylic powder – Avalibke acrylic powder in a number of colors, becomes a synthetic liquid used for making teeth when combined with a liquid monomer.

Dental impression plaster – A dental impression plaster used for very low expansion.

Dental stone – For casting dental impressions with dental alginate, very difficult low expansion gypsum.

Detail layer- The first thin layer of material brushed to bring detail into a mold or on a sculpture.

Death Glue – An incredibly strong acrylic-based two-part glue.

Dividing Wall – A temporary wall made of WED clay to create a different half of a case mold between the front and back.

Drawing Matt – Drawing Matt for hair keeping and drawing -a double-sided mat with small hooks on it (a bit like Velcro). This makes it easier to take a small section of hair to deal with for the wig maker, which keeps the hair secure from being twisted or blowing away.

Dremel – A flexible electric spinning instrument with interchangeable heads, commonly used by sculptors and mold makers.

Dressing – For a natural look, refers to trimming, curling and setting postchie wigs and moustaches.

Drip coat – The first thin coat of material for detail, rubbed into a mold or onto a sculpture.

Dupe – A lower product which is typically the same as or identical to a higher product.

Dog Box – Referring to a tiny static makeup truck on set word.


Ectomorphic – The part in W is connected. The classification by H. Sheldon of body types that measure the degree of slenderness, angularity, and fragility of the body. Characterized by a slender, slender body structure with moderate muscle development.

Emollient – Complex mixtures of chemical agents engineered specifically to make the skin’s outer layers (epidermis) smoother and more flexible. They improve the hydration (water content) of the skin by reducing evaporation.

Endomorphic – 1:of, or component-related in W. The classification of body types by H. Sheldon tests the massiveness of the digestive viscera and the degree of roundness and softness of the body. 2:Often with a pronounced propensity to become obese, having a heavy rounded body build up.

Epicanthical fold – The skin of the upper eyelid protecting the eye’s inner corner. The fold spreads to the inner side of the eyebrow from the nose.

Ester – A chemical compound derived from an acid (organic or inorganic) in which an-O-alkyl (alkoxy) group is substituted for at least one-OH (hydroxyl) group. Esters are usually derived from carboxylic acid and from alcohol.

Extrinsic – Not part of someone’s or something’s basic nature; coming or working from outside.

Extrinsic Stain – The adhesion to dental enamel of bacteria or decoloring agents that cause the tooth to assume an odd color or tint. According to the agent, it differs in shade: coffee, tea, and tobacco trigger brownish-black stains; green to brown chromogenic bacteria; and bluish-gray to black leaks from amalgam restoration.

Encapsulate – Enclose (something) in a capsule or as if it were in it. Normally, a mixing edge is formed in reference to the use of a plastic cap (either sprayed or swollen) to cover a piece of silicone.

Eye line – The direction in which the actor wants to look in a picture.

Epoxy – Epoxy is either a basic ingredient or a cured epoxy resin end product, as well as a colloquial name for the functional group epoxy.


Fall out – Flakes or leaves a gritty transition to other areas of the face when an eye shadow that is powdery in texture.

Fiberglass – A popular form of fiber-reinforced plastic that uses fiberglass. The fibers can be arranged randomly, flattened (called a chopped strand mat) into a board, or woven into a cloth. The plastic matrix, most often based on thermosetting polymers such as epoxy, polyester resin, or vinylester, may be a thermoset polymer matrix or a thermoplastic. (Used most commonly to make big molds

Final Tests – The last chance for hair and make-up to get all right.

Finger waves – A cosmetics product or procedure specifically developed to fix issues with skin pigmentation, such as vitiligo, scarring and birthmarks. Usually, makeup items are a highly pigmented paste, so it covers well and needs just a small amount of liquid

Flange – A flat rim, collar, or rib projection on an object that is used for reinforcement or attachment. Referring to the dividing edge so that the partitions in the mold are designated.

Flashing – Excess casting material in a prosthetic mood which is isolated by the cutting edge of the mood from the appliance. Often, the cold region where overflow gathers.

Flocking – The method of depositing several tiny fiber particles (called flock) onto a surface. The texture created by the process, or any material used primarily for its flocked surface, may also be referred to. To produce more depth and intrinsic color, Flocking can also be mixed into silicones.

Foam Latex – Foam latex is a lightweight, soft latex medium used to alter the external appearance of a person in masks and facial prosthetics. A liquid latex base is combined with different additives to make foam latex and whipped into a foam, then poured or inserted into a mold and baked in an oven to cure it.

Forensic – Referring to or denoting the application to the detection of crime of scientific methods and techniques.

Foundation – Foundation is a skin-colored makeup that is applied to the face to create a smooth, uniform complexion color, to cover defects, and often to improve the natural tone of the skin.

Fullers earth – Any clay substance with the ability to decolorize oil or other liquids without chemical treatment is Fuller’s earth. Modern uses of Fuller’s Earth include oil and grease absorbents and can be used in beauty products as an active and inactive ingredient.

Fumed Silica – Fumed silica is made from silicon tetrachloride flame pyrolysis or from quartz sand vaporized in an electric arc of 3000 °C. In the makeup/sfx market, Fumed Silica is mainly referred to as Cab-O-Sil.

From The Top – To begin the scene from the start


Galloon – Galloon is a thin ribbon of nylon or silk used to attach a wig’s front hair lace to the wig block. When blocked, it reinforces the wig lace and prevents it from breaking. It comes in various widths (about 5-12mm) and is pinned with tiny dressmaker pins called short whites over the hair lace to the block. Galloon is often used at the nape of a wig to add power to a base, for example. It comes in a long length, so it can be cut as needed and is available in the fundamental colors of the hair (black, browns, grey, blonde).

Gaffer – The chief production lighting technician who is in charge of the electrical department.

Gaf Quat – Specialist product produced and marketed by Kryolan, specifically for the flattening of hair. Perfect for use where a smooth surface is required under bald caps. Dries to a rough finish and uses shampoo to wash off.

Gel coat – A dense polymer resin coat used in the manufacture of fibreglass; before adding resin and fibreglass mat or fibreglass cloth as strength layers, the gel coat is used as a detail or brush-up sheet.

Gelatin – Gelatin or gelatin is a transparent, colorless, brittle (when dry), collagen-derived flavorless food obtained from different parts of the animal body. It is widely used as a material for prosthetic appliances. Widely known as being hypoallergenic.

GFA – Glass-filled silicone gel appliances, often encapsulated by a thin silicone or plastic (vinyl) bald cap material envelope.

Glycerin is a colorless, odorless, dense liquid. Alcohol from sugar, sweet taste and low toxicity. Owing to its viscous nature and low evaporation, glycerin is used for makeup effects to mimic tears and sweat. In WED clay, it is also found to help it stay moist for longer periods than normal water-based clays.

Go off – A term usually used when the silicone has become a solid gel but is not yet completely cured to explain the curing process of silicone.Green Marble Selr – Produced by Kenny Myers and Richard Snell as a makeup sealer for Premiere Products Inc. It may be combined with Cabosil and used for ageing effects as a medication.

Gypsum – The common mineral used to make Plaster of Paris, Ultracal and dental stone, hydrated calcium sulphate.


H-10 – A material used to flatten the hair under the bald cap to remove the bump and control the hair around the ears/nape of the neck. Produced with 70 percent alcohol, Gaf Quat and a combination of moustache wax.

Hackle – The base has long, sharp metal needles pointing upwards, a piece of equipment used by wig makers. Used to combine hair colors, separate various hair lengths and detangle hair in wig making. The needles and nasty mishaps have a removable cover to shield them.

Hair lace – A tulle-like, very fine, lightweight netting material, often made of silk and used to make wigs and hairpieces.

Hair punching – the method of using a specially crafted needle to add hair to a prothetic appliance one at a time, forcing the hair into the surface of the appliance in the direction that the hair would naturally develop.

Hair tying – The form of knotting hair into wig lace, one by one with a special fish hook-like needle (called a ventilating needle).

Hexane is a petroleum distillate which is highly flammable and carcinogenic and is used as a solvent.

HSE – Health and safety Executive, responsible for health and safety legislation in Great Britain.

Hydrocal – A plaster of white gypsum.

Hygroscopic – Moisture absorption or attraction from the air.

Hypoallergenic – Intended to eliminate the risk of an allergic reaction or to mitigate it.

HOD – Department Manager.

Keep the Red – There’s another take going on.

Holding Area – A location where actors would wait before being called onto the stage, similar to Crowd Base.

HD – stands for high definition and refers to the high resolution and transmission systems of television and video cameras. Careful mixing and use of ingredients is required for makeup to avoid unnecessary things (e.g. powder, edges, hair lace) being noticeable on the screen. HD, particularly red colors, may also affect colors.

Hyper pigmentation – A term referring to the darkening of the skin area due to abnormal excessive melanin development (the pigment that contributes to skin colour)


Intrinsic colouring – Internal colouring. Silicone or gelatine candidates are also inherently colored with various colored flocks to mimic the appearance of human skin.

IPA – Alcohol Isopropyl

IPM – Myristate Isopropyl

Isopropyl alcohol, also known as rubbing alcohol or isopropanol. Sold at either 70% or 99%, the latter of which is more widely found in cosmetics. (cf. IPA)

Isopropyl myristate is an IPA and myric acid ester. Used as an emollient for Pros Aide remover and as an effective remover. (cf. IPM)


Jacket mold – A hybrid mold made with an interior of registered\keyed silicone or urethane rubber and a registered/keyed support for extremely precise casting that is keyed to the rubber interior. (Consult the Matrix Mold)

Juicer – For an electrician, juicer is a slag term primarily used on set and in video.

Jowls – Folds of the skin of older or overweight individuals hanging from the lower jaw.


Kabuki – A small, thick and circular makeup brush for the application of powdered mineral makeup items.

Karo Syrup – Transparent corn syrup for the production of blood.

Key – Indention or protrusion to assist a mold’s precise feeding. (See hold key, key for registration

Key Makeup Artist – The Head of the Makeup Department also collaborates closely. The two come up with unique looks together, and then you break up the tasks required.

Key Grip – The chief grip who works closely with the gaffer to create shadow effects for set lighting and oversees camera cranes, dollies and other platforms or support systems in compliance with the photography director’s requirements. (Manufacture)

Kick – The amount of time a material takes to begin setting up. (Refer to Go Off)

Knotting – The method used for adding hair to a hair lace base in wig making. A knotting hook is used to loop and tie the hair into place (a small tool with a hook at the end). It is a highly specialized technique which takes a lot of practice to become proficient.


Latex – The milky sap of the rubber trees of Para. Used extensively, particularly in the production of foam latex, in creating makeup effects and prosthetics.

Laying on hair – The practice of applying a few strands of hair by hand (with hair and glue) at a time to develop moustaches, beards, eyebrows, etc.

Lesion – A area of an organ or tissue that has sustained injury or disease damage, such as a wound, ulcer, abscess, or tumor.

Lifecasting – The method of making, by using alginate or life casting silicone, molding and casting technique, a three-dimensional replica of a living human body or body pieces.

Place – Not in a studio for filming? Here, filming will take place.


Matting – The type of reinforcement used in fiberglass is matting or CSM. It consists of randomly laid glass fibers over each other and held together by a binder. Usually, it is manufactured using the technique of hand lay-up, where sheets of material are placed in a mold and brushed with resin.

Marcel tongs – A curling tong made of metal that heats up in a special heater unit. The user tests the heat of the tong manually before using it to prevent singing of the hair. The tongs come in various sizes, ranging from thin ones used to curl moustaches to thicker tongs used to produce waves from Marcel.

Marcel Waves – In appearance, Marcel waves are similar to finger waves, but produced using Marcel tongs.

Mastix – Another term for spirit gum, an adhesive that is used to lace hair on the skin (e.g. wigs, facial hair). The substance used for removing spirit gum glues is the Mastix remover.

Maquette – The French term for scale model, often referred to as bozetto in Italian. Used also as a precursor to a larger sculpture.

Matrix mold – A mold combination made with a silicone or urethane rubber keyed inside and a support mold keyed to the rubber inside for highly precise casting.

The polymeric pigmentation present in our skin and hair is melanin. The main determinant of human skin colour is melanin.

Mold key – An indentation or protrusion to help with the exact alignment of the sections of the mold.

Mold negative – The resulting mold is the opposite or inverse of the object, a mold negative, when making a cast of a three-dimensional object (positive).

Mold positive – When material is placed into a negative mold, the resulting cast of an object.

Mold wall – A temporary water clay wall used to make up a divider between a case mold’s front and back halves. (see wall splitting)

Mother mold – A soft inner mold’s rigid support shell.

MSDS – Sheets of material safety data mandated by law for some goods.


NASMA – United Kingdom for talented makeup artists and hairdressers working in the film industry.

NC – NC is cool neutral, which suggests yellow undertones.

NW – warm neutral, which implies pink undertones.

Negative – The surface of the mood that holds the optimistic sculpture’s reverse three dimensional imprint.

Nevus – A medical term widely defined as birthmarks or moles for growth or lesions.

Nitrile – A synthetic copolymer of rubber that is mostly used to make gloves because of its toughness and chemical resistance. Great for dealing with RTV silicones, as an adverse reaction would not be hindered or triggered.

Nightshoot – Filming all night long. There were no fixed hours, but it could begin as early as 4 pm and end as late as 7 am.


Ocularistry – The field of artificial eyes designing, manufacturing and fitting.

Oil clay – Oil-based modeling clay, to avoid drying or shrinking, oil is mixed with the clay.

OSHA – Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the primary government department of the United States in charge of health and safety law enforcement.

Overflow – Excess material of the appliance in a mold, flashing in added to a cold that allows any place to absorb overflow without destroying the mold or casting.


Parting edge – A mold’s dividing edge or dividing line defines how and where a mold’s parts can fit together and become part of it.

Paxs Color – Prothetic paint, made of acrylic paint and Pros help

Pay or Play – A contract clause that allows the producing company to compensate a member of the cast or crew for a project, whether or not that project actually goes into production.

Playback – First of all, a technique of recording music activity, playing music through loudspeakers while dancing, singing, etc.

Plaster bandage – Impregnated fabric bandages used to render help shells for moods by Plaster of Paris.

Plaster of Paris – A white gypsum used to produce and cast mold that begins as a dry powder and is combined with water to create a paste that produces and then hardens exothermic creations.

Plasticize – To create or turn into plastic.

Plastiline – A sort of clay based on oil.

Plate mold – A plate mold is a flat mold with a negative appearance, most commonly used for generic wounds in make-up results.

Polyfoam – Urethane foam that is either soft or rigid and can be used. It can be combined either by weight or by volume at a 1:1 ratio. (see foam cold, foam soft)

Polymer – A higher molecular weight compound formed either from the addition of several smaller molecules, or from the condensation of several smaller molecules with water or weight removal.

Polymerization – To form a polymer, the bonding of two or more monomers.

Positive – Any model or sculpture used to create the negative.

Pot life – The length of a material’s working period until it starts to heal.

PPI – Premiere Products Inc, Telesis Device Producers and Skin Illustrator Pallets.

Print coat – The first thin material coating that is brushed onto a mold or onto a sculpture to collect data before reinforcing layers are formed.

Prosthetic – An external piece of material that also signifies a shift in appearance on the body. It is typically made of silicone, rubber foam or gelatin. (See apparatus)

PSI – Pounds per square inch, a pressure scale

Pull – The word for the creation of a mask or appliance, which refers to any time a component is removed from the mold.

Post-Production-The phase in the creation of a project that takes place after the picture is delivered or “after the production.” This word may also be used to edit video/film or refer to post-production audio.

Pros Aide – The brand name of a water-based adhesive used to bind skin to makeup prosthetics for medical and special effects. The skin forms a waterproof bond.

Primer – A make-up substance that is used after washing the face and before adding a make-up foundation (which can be a cream, gel or liquid). By smoothing out pores and fine lines, as well as mattifying the skin and helping to last longer for a makeup application, it preps the skin.

Paraben – A class of chemicals commonly used in all forms of cosmetics as a preservative. Parabens used in cosmetics are usually synthesised and the common ones used include methylparaben (may be classified as ingredient E218), ethylparaben (E214), propylparaben (E216) and butylparaben.

Pencilled Booking – A temporary, yet to be confirmed, booking. You might be given a heavy pencil occasionally. This is more probable, but still not proven, to occur.

Production Office – The offices, normally headed by the Production Manager, behind the set.

Pick Up – A small section of a scene that has been skipped or needs to be re-shot to be finished by the crew

Pin Curl – A popular hair setting technique used to produce a wave or soft curl. Wound into a spiral and pinned into place is a small part of damp hair. It is combed out to create a soft curl or wave when it is dry.

Postiche – Postiche refers to any fake hair object, from beards, moustaches, side boards and eye brows to wigs and hair bits. Can be produced from real hair or synthetics (e.g. human, yak, wool) (e.g. acrylic).



Reset – The camera is shifted to a new location.

Registration Key – An indentation or protrusion, drilled or desired, made of clay, rubber, or resin, used to allow a mold to be precisely aligned.

Relative density – The ratio of the mass of a solid or liquid to that of an equivalent volume of water or gas distilled into an equal volume of air or hydrogen.

Release agent – A substance that helps you to remove molds from cast objects. Two types of release agents are available, barrier, reactive and chemical.

Rigid foam – Rigid foam of urethane mixed either by weight or by volume in a 1 to 1 ratio.

Silicone RTV – Vulcanization at room temperature. While there are platinum room temperature vulcanisation silicones, tin cure condensation silicone is most widely used.

Greasepaint rubber mask – Makeup intended to be used over latex or foam slush. IPA 99% can be thinned down to create color washes.

Moving foam – The term for a batch of foam to be processed.

Runner or PA – The Advertising and Development Office may be told to do something at all to promote it. From gathering individuals to and from the collection to taking orders for lunch or picking up faxes.


Sculpt – Another name for a sculpture, used by artists for effects.

Sealer – A clear makeup substance (usually a spray or liquid) that goes over makeup to help it last longer and withstand sweat, water, heat, moisture and rubbing (including everyday makeup, temporary tattoos, camouflage).

Seaming – Surface blemishes are removed and washed and prosthetic seams are flashed off.

Shell – Support mold, the molds’ rigid outer component.

Shim – Material, often thin wood or metal used as a dividing wall in mold making.

Silicosis is also known as the disease of grinders or rotting potters. A non-reversible, and often lethal, debilitating lung condition caused by respirable silica over-exposure.

Slip Latex is a liquid latex that can air dry and does not require a foam latex heat to heal. Used mainly in the production of latex masks.

Slush Latex – A liquid latex used for the production of rubber masks or appliances. When it is poured into a mold and sloshed around to form a skin, it is called slush latex.

Warm foam – Soft urethane foam combined by volume or weight at a ratio of 1:1.

Special effects – SFX or SPFX during live action shooting for brief, traditionally realistic or physical effects achieved. This can include the use of machined props, scenery, scale models, pyrotechnics and blood bags.

Spirit Gum – Mastix, also named. A liquid adhesive used to bind to the skin of hair lace, e.g. wigs and facial hair.

Splash coat – A gypsum stone is added to the rest of the first batch of stone directly after the brush coat. (See Coat of Drip)

Stippling – An application technique commonly produced with a stipple sponge to mimic varying degrees of solidity. An ageing effect, such as shading, beard stippling or applying latex.

Stipple sponge – A synthetic rough open woven sponge used to achieve a variety of aging, fading, beards and capillary effects.

Straight makeup – Correction and camouflage makeup used to describe it and to not change it, people face it. Straight makeup should be understated and imperceptible in general.

Suppurate – To create discharge fluid, e.g. the discharge of liquid from a serving burn.

Shingle – A short haircut for women from the 1920s where under a bobbed hairstyle the hair at the nape was shaved, or very closely cut.

SPF – is a sun protection factor and is a standard of protection assessed in the laboratory against sun damage (UVB radiation). The higher the SPF, the higher the protection provided against UVB, the key cause of sunburn, found in sunscreens and certain makeup items.

Soundstage – An enclosed room in the studios where the set is built.

Stand By – This is a sign that it is about to begin filming.

Broken Day – A day shifted by hours. A mid-morning start and a late evening end, for instance. It’s always a regular day to pay.

Set – Where filming happens.

Change Call – Not working for a full day. A limit of four hours of work is only used under the FAA agreement.

Switch – A thick strand of natural or synthetic hair used to add a hairstyle’s bulk, detail or color. There will be a small elastic loop on the end of the switch, making it easier to connect the switch to the head of the wearer.

Swatch – Swatch is an image rubbed onto the skin or finger of the product to show you the color or texture.

Skin procedure – A test that is used to assess the response of the skin to ingredients or chemical products. A small amount of the object (like the wrist or behind the ear) is placed on clean skin and left for 24 hours. It should always be used before things like latex are used.


Take – Shooting a specific series. Until the director is satisfied, this will be repeated.

Telesis – Set of products from Premiere Products INC, including a variety of adhesives and removers. Used widely by medical practitioners and in the cosmetics industry.

Terra alba – as an additive to fresh plaster, dry, powdered, cured plaster, allowing it to kick or begin to set within a fraction of its usual time.

Texture stamp – A versatile stamp that during the detailing stage can be pressed into clay to add texture.

Thixotropic – Thixos are usually applied to silicones to create a paste texture for thickening a viscous substance.

Tilt – The camera either goes up or down.

Tracking Shot or Dolly – Through driving on tracks, the camera travels smoothly forwards or backwards.

Turning Over/Turning – This shows that the camera is about to roll.

Tightline – The eye’s inner upper rim (under the eyelashes).


Ultra cal – For better precision and higher surface hardness, super strength gypsum cement is recommended.

Undercut – Any positive or negative region that induces a locking state between the heart and the mold.

Urethane – Polyurethane, also called urethane. Urethane also refers to soft ridged foam in rubber or plastic material used for making moulds, commonly known for its tough property.

Unit Base – This is where the development team, when on site, would base itself on any given day.

Ultra par 4 – Aerosl release agent to extract molds from epoxy parts. It is also useful for extracting encapsulated silicone appliances from molds. Paintable release molds.


Vascularity – Channels or ducts containing fluids such as lymph or blood.

Ventilating – Hand binding into a wig lace with a ventilating needle.

Visual effects – Typically combined with live action video or CGI with VFX visual effects. The visual effect applies specifically to post-production, while SFX refers to such mechanical effects.

Vulcanisation – The method of improving strength and freedom from stickiness and odour by mixing, in the presence of heat and pressure, sulphur or other additives. v


Water clay – Unlike WED clay, water-based modeling clay does not contain glycerin.

WED clay – Water-based clay used to make large sculptures, very smooth and slow drying of the clay, remains moist for longer than other clays based on water as it contains glycerin. Walter Elias Disney is named after him.

Weft – A coil of hair weaved and sewn together for quick application at the root end.

Wig block – Also known as a wig used for wigs and posthice dressing.

Wig lace – A very fine four-way flesh colored mesh used to merge hair lines where the hair meets the skin to offer the appearance of a natural hairline.

Witch hazel – An astringent used when applying a prosthetic to rid the skin of oils. It can also be heated and used for gelatin blending.

Working time – The sum of mixing and pouring time before the substance starts to kick or set.

Wrinkle stipple – To create the appearance of wrinkles, often made of liquid latex sticking to the face.

Wrap – This shows the end of the day of filming.

Wrap (Hair) – In preparation for a wig or bald application, the method of dressing the hair.

Weft – A long hair fringe that can be applied in order to build length, add fullness or colored parts to someone’s own hair. To build a secure seam that can be attached to the wearer’s own hair with pins, clips, glue or stitched in, the weft is created by weaving loose hair into a thin thread.



Yak hair – Coarse hair often used for postiche and hair punching.


Zbrush – A digital platform for sculpting that incorporates 3D/2.5D modeling, texturing and painting.

4k – 4K resolution, also known as 4K, corresponds to 4,000 pixels in horizontal resolution and 2,000 pixels in vertical resolution. In the fields of digital television and digital cinematography, many 4K resolutions exist.