Frosted look between resin layers

I’m thinking about doing a 3D resin painting and I would like to include a layer with a frosted design in it.

I can’t use traditional mechanical frosting techniques such as glass etching fluid or even sanding the resin because it won’t be on the top layer of resin so when I pour the next layer on I think the resin will fill the grit that those methods create and the design would just disappear.

I’m thinking of using a frosted look spray paint or maybe a super watered down layer of acrylic paint or watercolor, but I’m not confident in either of those ideas.

Anybody got any suggestions?

So I say this as someone who has absolutely no experience with any sort of resin working at all, and you should absolutely ignore it if someone says I’m wrong.

Is there a reason that you couldn’t do a resin painting that builds up to that particular layer that you need to do the glass etching fluid or whatever to get the grit, then do a very thin layer of clear resin to fill in the grit but still make sure they’re visible, and then continue on with the higher layers? Is that not going to work?

Not sure this is exactly what you are after but this person uses some next level techniques to achieve 3d effects. The way he does the torpedo bubble trails might work. Like if you make a thin layer with your design intentionally creating bubbles somehow?

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I hadn’t considered using UV resin for that part as I haven’t played a whole lot with it. I guess I could maybe mix a little bit of mica powder or maybe white alcohol ink with it so it looks frosted I’m hesitant about using acrylic paint with it because I want it to have that sort of texture/color that frosted glass has and in the past when I’ve used acrylic paint with resin its more opaque.

Maybe I’ll pick up a UV lamp and some UV resin and play with that idea.

So the reason I don’t think that will work is because when you pour the resin over top its going to fill in all of the teeth in the grit. When a resin tabletop is scratched or damaged the way to fix it is to sand the top and apply a new layer of resin, and when it cures its crystal clear all the way through the originally damaged top (as in you can’t even see the line where the layers meet).

laser engraved after-the-fact?

Right now I’m doing a smaller proof of concept, but I hope to use the method to do a whole desk top, which likely won’t fit into the laser cutters, unfortunately.

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I’m guessing our lasers won’t really do that, and/or the process/resin needed would be…prohibitive. But if you proved me wrong about that, it’d be awesome!
Meh, it was just a thought…

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If you’re willing to go through the trouble, HDPE plastics will diffract light regardless of surface texture. (Think milk jug plastic.) You could free cut or laser pieces and arrange them inside your resin pour. You can get sheets of it at JoAnn in the poster board section, and I believe some synthetic vellum is made from it as well.


Oooh, vellum is an interesting idea because that’s exactly the look I’m going for. I could cut it on my silhouette. I wonder if somebody sells a vellum vinyl.