Sticky vs Drippy: Which Fake Blood Should You Choose?

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Blood FX Review by Zuri fx

What’s your blood type? I’m talking fake blood and if you’re not sure what kind you need, then keep reading.

One of the most asked questions regarding fake blood has to do with viscosity: “Do I need sticky or drippy fake blood?” We’ll cover which situations call for a thick, sticky blood and which require a thinner, drippy blood.

Let’s also talk color. Fake blood ranges in color from very dark to bright red.

No matter what type of fake blood you use, always spot test products on fabric and skin before using because they may stain. Also, carefully read product description for proper usage. 

Type of Wound

Before we go any further, you’ll need to think about the type of injury you are creating. Is it old or fresh? What caused the bleeding? The blood oozing from a deep knife gash looks a lot different than a bloody road rash. Is the wound actively bleeding? The answers to these questions will help you choose the right kind of fake blood.


Fake blood products are meant for creating realistic effects. For that reason, products come in dark and bright shades of red. Which should you choose? Here are some quick tips.

  • Old wounds are darker than fresh wounds. If you’re creating the effect of a gash that’s been festering for days, then choose a dark color.
  • For a fresh wound you’ll probably want a  bright red color, like Tinsley Transfers Bright Red Blood FX or Graftobian Magic Blood Shaker Powder.
  • Shallow scrapes and road rash blood is bright red.
  • Scabs are dark red.
  • Blood oozing from deep wounds is usually dark red.
  • If you see a product labeled “arterial blood,” it’s bright red.
  • Venous blood” products are dark red.

When to Use Sticky Fake Blood

We’ll refer to sticky blood as a thick consistency blood that will not drip unless diluted.

Coagulated Blood Gel

  • To create a scab or blood clot use a very thick gel that will not drip when applied in small amounts. Global FX Coagulated Blood Gel (pictured above) is perfect for this effect. While it will drip when applied liberally, if applied in small amounts or with a stipple sponge, it will stay put. Ben Nye Fresh Scab, a dark red blood that will stay moist but not drip, is also a good choice and comes in large sizes for mass casualties. Blood paste (pictured below) is another option when you need a very thick consistency blood that will not drip. This is one of the thickest fake blood products available. 
    Blood Paste
  • To fill the inside of a latex wound, you’ll want to use a very thick blood. The products listed above are ideal for this.
  • Road rash effects can be achieved realistically with a thin application of a corn syrup based blood like Ben Nye Thick Blood and a stippling sponge or brush.

When to Use Drippy Fake Blood

Drippy fake blood refers to products that will continue to drip, both gels and liquids.

  • To fill a latex wound with oozing blood, use something like Ben Nye Thick Blood, Graftobian FX Blood Gel or Mehron FX Blood Gel. These fake blood products are thick, dark and will drip, but not run like water.
  • Blood tears or red eyes call for a drippy product. Most fake blood products are not safe for use in the eyes. If you are looking to create a bloody, red eye or blood tears it’s very important to use the right product. Kryolan Red Eye Blood is safe to use in and around the eyes. This is a drippy fake blood that has a syrup consistency. Some people may find this product uncomfortable, so test a small amount on your model.
    Stage Blood
  • Blood dripping from the mouth requires, not only a drippy fake blood, but also one that is edible. Mehron FX Stage Blood (pictured above), is perfect for creating blood oozing from the mouth. You can also fill capsules with this opaque fake blood. This syrup based liquid, will remain wet and continue to ooze. When using on the skin, apply with the applicator or a separate brush. When it’s time to remove, wipe off excess liquid with a towel and then use a makeup remover for the rest.
  • Bloody nose. This type of gore requires a drippy blood, like Graftobian Stage Blood.Sticky vs. Drippy Fake Blood
  • For a blood-splatters you’ll want a very thin fake blood, like Mehron Bright Arterial Spurt Blood or Mehron Dark Venous Spurt Blood. To apply thin fake blood for a splatter effect, use a spray bottle or flick the blood with a brush. Mehron Blood Splatter Spray (pictured above) is convenient because it comes in a pump, no additional tools needed for the perfect bloody mess.
  • If your subject is the unfortunate victim of a severe flesh wound, there may be some squirting and gushing involved. In that case, you’ll need a very thin fake blood and lots of it. Liquid Blood by the pint will serve you well.

When to Use Blood Powder

Blood Powder, Wetted
Blood powder
 (pictured above) is a unique product that goes on transparent, but turns bright red when it comes in contact with water. This is a great fake blood for creating all sorts of effects. Spritz the powdered area with water for a road rash effect. You can also use it for whipping, splatters or slashing effects. Powdered blood also takes up less space in your kit than big bottles of fake blood.

Can I use Red Face Paint?

If you want to create a zombie, bloody gash or road rash with face paint, there are a few things to keep in mind. Here are some tips for using face paint:

To see these products put to the test, watch the video below or check out the blog "Blood Review by zuri Fx."


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