How to Make a Paper Mache Mask

    by eHow Contributor

    About the Author

    This article was created by a professional writer and edited by experienced copy editors, both qualified members of the Demand Media Studios community. All articles go through an editorial process that includes subject matter guidelines, plagiarism review, fact-checking, and other steps in an effort to provide reliable information.


    If you need a mask for a costume party, or you're just looking for a rainy day activity, make paper mache. Making a mask is an effective way to test your creativity, and it's a great family craft project. It can be a little messy, but it's so simple and nontoxic that even young kids can make shapes with it. Sketch your ideas on paper first, and then organize your ingredients anywhere you can clean up quickly such as your kitchen, basement or backyard.

    Things You'll Need

    • Newspapers
    • Balloon
    • Large cup
    • Plastic wrap
    • Flour
    • Water
    • Large bowl
    • Masking tape
    • Foil
    • Hole punch
    • Elastic cord
    • Paint

    show more

    Inflate a 12-inch balloon. Blow it up to the size you want based on how large the mask needs to be to fit on your face and tie it closed.

    Cover a large cup or mug with plastic wrap and then set the balloon on top of it. The cup acts as a base to hold your balloon while you work on it, and the plastic wrap keeps the balloon from sticking to the cup once you apply the paper mache.

    Mix 1 part flour with 2 parts of water until it develops a consistency of thick glue. Stir the mixture well to remove the lumps and add additional flour or water as needed. Mix your paper mache paste in a disposable bowl for faster cleanup.

    Tear newspaper into strips about 1 inch wide and 6 inches long. Dip the newspaper strips in the paper mache mixture and apply them one at a time to the balloon. Cover only one side of the balloon with a layer of paper mache; leave holes for the eyes. Once dry apply a second layer and let dry completely.

    Add features like a nose, ears, warts and thick eyebrows with aluminum foil and secure them with masking tape. Then, apply a final layer of paper mache strips and let the mask dry.

    Pop the balloon and make a hole in each side of the mask with a hole punch. Run a piece of elastic cord through the holes and tie in a knot at each end. Paint and embellish your mask as desired.