Lifecasting - how much alginate and plaster bandages

Hi everyone. I do apologize for the basic question but I was wondering if you could share your experience with me. I need to lifecast couple of actors which I have done before but this time I need to order materials via the employer before I do the actual lifecasts. Would you be able to tell me approximately how much alginate and plaster bandages will I need for a full head cast,  face cast and a hand cast? Thank you for your time.


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    2 to 2.5lbs of alginate should be enough for a head cast.  You would also need around 6 4" rolls of plaster bandage for a head cast.  Those numbers can change based on how thick you make your alginate layer, actor head size, and how far down the neck you want to go.

    Face cast would be about half the materials of a full head, and a hand cast will change based on how far up the wrist/arm you go and how large a container you use.  Hand casts usually use a lot more alginate since they are a solid container full rather than a layer built up on the subject.  You need that thickness in a hand cast to help prevent tearing as you remove your subject's hand.

    You also want to make sure you have enough material for a backup casting of each, as sometimes your mix is off, things can tear, etc.  

    Smooth-On sells their Alja-Safe alginate in 3lb quantities, and 3 of those should be enough for you to have a bit of a safety net, 4 would be even safer, but you would likely end up with extra material.  https://shop.smooth-on.com/alja-safe

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    Thank you! Your post makes it so much easier to calculate :)
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