Makeup – Sand-Matting

There are two methods of matting Blythe; sanding or spraying.

Sanding Vs. Spraying

Spray matting involves removing Blythe’s face plate and spraying a fine mist of “matting spray” over her face. this technique will preserve stock makeup under the spray, but the downside is that in time, the sprayed finish is likely to become dirty with regular handling, and scratches easily. It is near-impossible to clean or patch up. If you ever decide to remove the matte spray, you will also have to remove the original makeup. Spray matting is best for display dolls. If you plan on spray-matting, invest in a bottle of Mr. Super Clear.

At PuchiCollective, we prefer sand-matting, because little smudges and scratches can just be re-sanded, making this the best option for dolls that are regularly played with.

Sand-Matting Tips

  1. Takara Blythe MattingSanding can be done on an unopened girl very carefully but it’s much easier to do if you have her taken apart, eye mechanism out, and can just hold the face piece by itself. If you do sand her unopened head, put two small triangles of plain paper into her eye sockets to protect her eye mechanism from dust and scratches.
  2. You will need a pair of sanding sponges in fine and extra-fine ( The sponges we like seem finer than the actual numerical scale on them, they are labeled 300 but are akin to 1000 grit sandpaper. ). We exclusively use Norton 3x Sanding sponges.
  3. Blythe Sand Matting Cut the sponges into small rectangles so they are easy to hold.
  4. Blythe Sand Matting Test on a small patch on the back of her head. If you do not see scratch marks, move to her front faceplate.ร‚ย Start sanding her face with the fine sanding sponge in circular motions. (grit-classifications vary from brand to brand. test your sponge on the back of her head first. if you see scratches or swirl marks, your sponge is too coarse.Continue in small circular motions all over her face, on her cheeks, forehead, chin. Be careful not to sand so hard and fast that she loses her features. you want her face contours to stay the same, but just lose the shiny layer. Pay attention to the nostrils and lip edges. cut your sponge into smaller peices to get into tight spaces. If you sand very carefully around the lips and eyeshadow you can matte her without losing that makeup. You will lose her blush though.
  5. Don’t forget to sand the back of her head. Also, at the edges of the seam it can be a little resistant to losing the shine, so pay particular attention on those edges if you want to do a perfect job!
  6. Blythe Sand Matting After finishing her head with your fine sponge, go over her whole head with the extra-fine sponge. This will give her a flawless, scratch-free finish.
  7. Blythe Sand Matting you can make her semi-matte by following all the above steps, and then gently rubbing her face with a soft t-shirt to bring back a little shine
  8. the sanded surface is the perfect base for pastel makeup

80 responses to “Makeup – Sand-Matting”

  1. Liz

    what is the reason for sand matting a Blythe? Is it because people do not prefer the skin finish on the face, or just to clean marks and bumps~ thank you!

  2. Dian Wilson

    I want to sand because I don’t want her face to be reflective. Look at a bunch of Blythe photos and you will see where her face is shiny, you lose the beauty of her face…it just reflects glare.

  3. Lindsey

    I bought my Blythe purely for photography purposes so i’d like her face to have a matt finish, but i’m too scared to do it myself as i don’t wanna break her and waste alot of money. Is there anywhere i can get this done which won’t be too expensive? thanks x

  4. Nicole

    I have been having a difficult time finding both the Fine and Extra Fine Norton 3X sponges. Is there a known source online? Is there another brand that works as well?

  5. Ana

    Hi there. I’m not sure if this is where I would ask this question. But…I am getting a Kenner (who I have not seen in person yet) who has REALLY bad yellow discoloration on one side of her face. It’s really obvious and I am wondering what steps I should take to get her skin tone evened out. Thanks!

  6. Tea


    I also want to sand a face,but don’t know where I can buy the sabding sponges,I live in the Netherlands (europe) and we don’t have it here.
    maybe you can help me.

  7. Rowena

    This was a very helpfull guide when my friend and I were sand-matting my first Blythe (RRe) but she introduced me to steel wool as an alternative to sanding sponge, it’s a lot lighter, but it doesn’t do the full job so I would reccomend (if it’s ok) that if anyone wanted to sand matte just to get the shine off, steel wool is a good choice. =D
    (p.s. luuuuv the website. )

  8. Sammy

    hi! i am getting my first blythe ๐Ÿ˜ฎ and i am planning on customizing it and sand matting to the point where the makeup comes off, so i was wondering how and what you use to do their makeup :3

  9. Ducky

    Please help me
    if this sponge is ok: Norton flexible sanding sponges – Fine Grit
    and can we mix matte spray with sanding sponges
    i’ve bought customized doll but the effect of the spray was poor and there are some scratches

  10. Cuzzy~Cola

    i was wonduring if i could use the “eggshell” finish as a base for pastels

  11. Jeanique

    I’ve got the same problem as Tea up here! What else could we use to sand-matting??

  12. linka

    salut! ๐Ÿ™‚
    umn .. so if you sand-matt a girleh’s face.. does that get rid of all the face-up? :S

  13. Laura

    Hiii! I recently received my first girl, and I bought some 400 and 320 grit sand paper, I think 3m’s Sandblaster? Anyway, I tried sanding the back of her head, and the very middle of it was a nice matte, but around it was the whole cirle light scratch marks. For some reason, though, I thought I could try and get that matte anyway, and tried it on a portion of her face. Anyway, she can cover it with her beautiful hair and everything, but if I order the Norton sandpaper and try and sand over it, will it look okay or will it be, I don’t know, like a little lower then the rest of her face once it’s all matted? Thanks! ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Melissa

    Hi Laura,

    The norton sponges should correct the problem. Start with the red one until you can’t see the scratches anymore, then finish up with the yellow. I don’t think you will see a noticeable difference in the shape of her face, unless you have already sanded very deeply with the sandblasters.

  15. Katie

    Would any brand of 150 grit and 320 grit sanding sponges work even if they are not Norton brand?

  16. Melissa

    the tough thing about sponges is that the grit ratings are less consistent than with paper. I find the norton 350 sponges to be closer to 450 or 500 grit paper. So, other brands might work, or they might be too coarse – always test on the back half or the inside of the faceplate to see if you are happy with the results before sanding her face.

    Good luck!

  17. Peggy

    Does anyobe have any tips on how to remove Blythe’s lipstick, I am having trouble getting off the last bit between her lips with sanding.


  18. Charlotte

    Where can you get those Sanding sponges from? Any UK websites?

    Thank you ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. Tia


    This tut really helped alot. Many thanks

  20. Aimee


    Really nice tutorial. BUT i’m wondering are there also ways to give a blythe doll a different face up if she still has a shiny face? I came across a picture of a blythedoll with shiny face รƒยกnd really nice make up on. It said that it was customized. I’m wondering how it was done?
    thanks in advance!

  21. mandy

    so is 3M-320grit-SandBlaster-Between-Coats-Sanding-Pads not the same?

  22. Melissa


    I have tried those, they are way more coarse than the norton 3x.

  23. mandy

    Melissa, thanks!
    Do you know any good sites that will ship to England of 3M ones?
    thanks again!

  24. Lyn

    Blythe looks like she has an oily complexion and needs those blotting papers for the face! I’m going to try this sand matting. Thanks for the tutorial.

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  26. Kim

    I was wondering if sanding a tanned Blythe is safe? Like will it be lighter under the surface, or is it harder to get consistent color after sanding? I have a Primadolly Ebony and I’ve been thinking of changing her look. ^^;


  27. Melissa

    Kim – Factory-produced “tanned” girls are tanned all the way through their plastic – you can sand them like normal-skinned blythes and they look fine. I sand-matted my CG and PD2E with great results.

  28. Kim

    Thank you Melissa!

  29. Yve

    Hi, I was just wondering if Plasti-Kote Krystal Clear Matt spray would be OK to use to seal pastel make-up on sanded skin? I can’t seem to get Mr Super Clear in the UK and Plasti-kote is supposed to be fine on rigid plastics? Thanks :o)

  30. V

    When sanding the back of a girl’s head, should we leave the trademark information or sand it down flat?

  31. Evelyn

    Hi! Please please please can anyone help – where do I find these sanding sponges in the UK? Or what could I use instead? Thanks! x

  32. Kari

    Hey Melissa! I was wondering what store you buy your brand sanding sponges at? If I can get them locally it’s better than waiting impatiently for them to arrive in the mail! The hardware stores near me seem to only carry 3M :-/

    Thank you,

    PS I love all your great tutorials! I have already done a few ๐Ÿ˜‰

  33. Agi


    Same question as above. I went on ebay, and couldn’t find the Norton brand. I’m hoping Michaels will have it. I’m getting my first Blythe in the mail around Tuesday and I’d love this to be my first project on her.

    I’m afraid to take her apart, do you think it’ll be possible to sand her with her body/back of head still attached? I’m thinking of putting paper over her eyes to keep them protected, but I’d like to wipe off the green eye shadow she comes with. Think this will be pretty much impossible? I just know I’ll break something if I start taking her apart ๐Ÿ™

    Thanks for your help Melissa ๐Ÿ™‚ Love all the tutorials, I’m anxious to start!

  34. Melissa

    I used to get mine at Home Depot, in the Paint dept.

  35. RaeJillian

    um, so what i have learned is that finding these items is way harder than customizing blythe! you just have to jump in and wham! it fun and easier than i thought! thanks for the tuts melissa, they SO gave me the boost to jump right in!

  36. Honey

    Hi Melissa,

    I was wondering what the possibiliy would be for you setting up a shop so people could buy the sanding sponges on this website through you? I know I’d gladly pay extra to be sure to get the right kind. I live in Europe and they don’t have them here and I’m clueless to how else I can sand my Blythe. Well, just a suggestion. Really love your tutorials!! ๐Ÿ˜€

  37. Kari

    Kari here again! I found the Norton sponges at a Miller Paint store! I just got done sand matting my girl, but I have a question.

    When I accidentally bump her, lay her down, or run my fingernail across her face (on accident of course) she gets like these shiny scratches. Did I not sand off enough shine with the red sponges? Or did I sand too much??? I used the yellow sponge after the red but she still gets these scratches!

    Is it just part of the sand matting process, like it always happens?

    Thanks Melissa! Wonderful tutorials, I can’t wait to try more ๐Ÿ˜‰

  38. Melissa

    Kari – the matte surface is much more delicate than her normal skin. If you want a better balance of durability and appearance, you could try “semi-matting” her – matte her, then gently wipe her whole face with a clean t-shirt. she’ll have a “satin” appearance. If you don’t like it, you can always re-sand.

  39. Kari

    Thanks Melissa! I think I’ll do the Semi-Matte because my cat really likes to be around her, and he scratches up her face!


  40. Bohemian

    I found some sandpaper called “Wetanddry” that comes in a package of 220-400 grit (or thereabouts). Do you think that if I used it wet that it would do a good job on Blythe’s face? Or is sandpaper simply too rough?

  41. Cammyrinoa

    This is a very good website which i try for 1st time to customised my 1st Blythe. I’m not manage to get the Norton sponges even at ebay. But instead of it, i tried out another brand which is 3M Sandblaster 320grits and the result is not bad. You may seen a bit of scratches at the 1st time u sand but that will be fine after u completely sand it. If it still not perfectly, i’ve a question that can i jz use the 3M above 500 or 800 grits to refine it?

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  43. Murderous_Desire

    What happens if you don’t spray first?? Also what spray can i use or find in the US.

  44. Faye

    is there any way to do this to my girl, without taking her apart? i’m very worried about taking her apart because im new with blythe dolls!! thanks!

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