Overwhelmed by our massive selection of glitters? We’ve created this simple guide for choosing glitter for your project, and how to apply it.
Ultra-Fine – in your face
Jewelry, nail-polish, makeup, paint, etc.
Ultra-fine glitter is like fairy dust. throw it up into the air and it becomes a sparkling haze that floats slowly down to the ground, dancing and shimmering while you find yourself frozen in pure admiration of the spectacle. Ultra-fine glitter is available in varieties nearly invisible until it hits the light (opalina glitters), or it can have a solid opaque color and reflect back an entirely different color when it sparkles (crystalina glitters). You’ll find ultra-fine glitter in makeup, jewelry, paint, nail polish, and fashion accessories. It is the most beautiful and exquisite of all the glitters. Be very careful when applying ultra-fine glitter because if this stuff goes flying, you’ll have a real task chasing down every last fleck of it. Ultra-fine is excellent for up close and personal applications, where it can be admired in all it’s dazzling detail. The tiny sparkle of ultra-fine is so delicate, that from across the room, you may not notice it at all. A little goes a long way in terms of coverage, so even though it carries a higher price than its less refined counterparts, it’s worth it.
Extra-fine – at arms length
Fashion items, tiaras, shoes, belts, furniture, fabric, etc.
pros: available in a wide variety of colors, excellent sparkle, excellent coverage
Extra-fine glitter is difficult to distinguish from ultra-fine at times. One way to tell them apart is to look at the price; extra-fine is more economical option. It has less ‘magic’ than ultra-fine, but still carries a beautiful delicate sparkle to any surface. The ideal application for extra-fine is one that demands a faceted shimmer without overwhelming the eye. You will find this glitter all over popular fashion accessories like belts, shoes, handbags, headbands, bracelets, hair clips, etc.
Fine – from across the table
Centerpieces, ornaments, kids activities, small posters, etc.
pros: available in a wide variety of colors, good sparkle, easy to work with, good coverage, economical, most popular
Fine glitter is the classic, most popular cut of glitter. It’s great coverage, wide color selection, and ease of use + cleanup make it the ideal glitter for promotional items, party decorations, arts & crafts, posters, school projects, etc. This glitter is easier to clean up than extra-fine and ultra-fine, but lacks the beauty and detail of their sparkles. A favorite choice for moms, teachers, and students.
Medium – from across the room
Posters, performances, props, presentations, parties
Medium glitter is a popular choice for theatre props, costumes, performances, etc. An excellent glitter to use in tandem with extra-large glitter to fill in gaps. Medium glitter only comes in a limited set of colors, but the price is low and cleanup is a snap.
Large – from across the street
Backdrops, sign letters, stage props, advertisements, performance costumes, floats and parade
Large glitter is really quite beautiful when viewed from more than 10 feet away. It has the sparkle of reflected light on water. This glitter is an excellent choice for large venue performances, large scale coverage, parades, floats, business advertising, street signs, etc. It only comes in a limited color variety but our favorite is the hex-flake ice blue, which only seems to enhance it’s water-like feel. The glitter has great visibility and will catch anyone’s eye from a distance.
Extra Large – To infinity and beyond
Special application, large venue performances, large architectural applications, confetti, floats
Extra large glitter is 1/4″ squares that look like paper-thin mirrors. When carefully applied one-by-one, the effects one can achieve are marvelous. When scattered randomly over a flat surface, the effect is equally dazzling at distances greater than 20ft. A favorite of event planners for use as confetti. Suitable for indoor or outdoor application, and cleanup is the easiest of all the glitters, since the flake size is easily swept up or vacuumed. Pair it with some medium or fine flake glitter of the same color to fill in the gaps between flakes for superb coverage.
Squeeze the glue onto the desired area, then dump the glitter onto the wet glue. You probably did this as a kid, its just that easy. We like to use Aileen’s Tacky Glue because its easy to squeeze and doesn’t drip like the Elmer’s variety does. However, you aren’t limited to using just white glue. Try using leather glue, hot glue, a glue stick, or even rubber cement.
It’s a simple concept: mix the glitter into the sealer, and brush it on. The higher the glitter-to-sealer ratio, the better the coverage and shimmer will be. This method will mute the sparkle a bit, but you will never have to worry about your glitter falling off or leaving a trail of sparkle behind. Excellent choice for items that will be handled a lot (like fashion accessories) and areas that will be outside. We like Mod Podge Gloss and Envirotex Lite for this method. Don’t freak out when Mod Podge looks milky as you stir in the glitter… it dries clear!
spray glue like super77 works excellent for almost any surface. Lay down some paper under the object to catch the overspray. Build up an even thin layer of glue. Throw out the paper. Using a new piece of paper underneath, dump glitter onto the glued areas. Simply funnel the excess glitter back into the jar and re-apply until the desired coverage has been obtained. Try using the flat side of a plastic bottle cap to burnish down the flakes that aren’t laying flat.
to seal or not to seal?
You may want to cover you newly glittered area with a sealer to keep the glitter from rubbing off. no matter what you use, sealing your glitter will detract from the sparkle to some degree. Choose a good sealer and minimize the damage to something barely noticable. If you are going to seal the glitter, use a very clear and glossy spray like Krylon Triple Thick Glaze, or a crystal clear liquid like Envirotex Lite. Both of these sealers will protect your glitter indoors and outdoors. *Envirotex tends to yellow in time when exposed to sunlight. Apply it generously, but just enough to make the glitter look wet.