Paint gone with Varnish

EDIT - I suspect the Genesis varnish itself may have something to do with it, at least is the cause of the shininess … and the paint coming up may be a varnish issue, or maybe the oven is dropping temperature in the middle of baking, or I didn’t scrub the kit clean as well as I thought! Just realized with all the drama toward BB it may look like I’m blaming BB for the problem, which I certainly don’t want to do! :slight_smile:

What is going on with my kit? I’m in tears, honestly. I have a beautiful first quality 7mo. June Awake kit that I’ve been working on for a month and a half, finally applying varnish, have everything here ready to assemble her … and this is happening ALL over her body!! With each pounce of the varnish, her paint comes right off with my sponge.

She’s been baked at least 30 times, and I triple baked (letting her cool in between) the final layer to be sure. I’ve got two thermometers showing the oven is at 275, and she was baked for 8 minutes each time! Bountiful Baby vinyl is the only vinyl that’s ever done this to me, this is the third doll it’s happened on, with the Genesis varnish, strange because the vinyl is so high quality. Any idea why this happens and how to prevent it? This shouldn’t be happening on a first quality kit with Genesis brand paints and varnished properly cured.

Oh no!

I have no idea, sorry!

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I went ahead and baked it so things didn’t get any worse, and I’m just as frustrated with how shiny the Genesis varnish gets after baking lately. Anyone else noticed this? My parts are shinier than they were before the varnish. I’m about to throw away all the Genesis varnish I own, strip the arms completely and start over, and use only air dry varnish from now on … I’m very proud of her painted hair, so I suppose the bright side is that I didn’t try to varnish that and ruin it!


I’ve had this happen when the paint didn’t cure properly for some reason. Mine also were baked a ton of times and it still didn’t cure right. Usually it was caused by my oven being off and upping the temp helped a bit. I don’t use a thermometer with every bake though so I don’t monitor it as closely as most do.


This is so sad! I would be in tears, also. I wonder if @bbsupport has any answers? I hope you get it figured out… June is a beautiful kit.

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It sounds to me like the paint is not cured properly. I’ve only had this happen to me once (when I was using ghsp) and I discovered that my Nuwave wasn’t getting hot enough. This was after a power surge when it was running. I guess something shorted out.
I only use air dry now so I cannot offer any thoughts as far as the shininess of the varnish. I can say I have not had any problems with BB kits.


I think I need to be more careful with the temperature on BB kits, maybe monitor the entire time I’m baking rather than just before I put them in the oven. I think the nice vinyl doesn’t stain as easily, which is a good thing, but the paint has to totally cure properly. I scrubbed the kit pretty well, but maybe I didn’t do as well as I thought and left some factory oils behind? Whatever I did, I’m going to be very careful from now on to check the paint between each layer, especially when working with the nice quality vinyl like BB has.

I’m going to throw out the Genesis varnish, though. The arms are crazy shiny compared to the legs that weren’t varnished, and I’ve noticed this with other kits, too. Genesis varnish used to be great! I wonder when they changed their formula?

Either way, I guess I’m going to have to strip the arms! Unless anyone has some June arms to sell? If so, I’d be interested!

Go with the American Decor soft touch. It’s air dry, and so much better than genesis. I was constantly worried the genesis was put on too thick, or wasnt cured enough, or wasn’t baked long enough…and it was rough!


Thanks so much for the ideas!!! I’ve been using Genesis matte. The kit doesn’t get shiny until after the varnish, it looks fine then it’s suddenly super shiny as if it’s been glossed all over. I even thought I must’ve contaminated my varnish with something and ordered a new jar, but the same thing is happening! I’ve also been washing the kits with Dawn, but maybe I left some soap on or left a spot unwashed? I’ve stripped a couple kits but I’ve never stripped varnish, but I also just managed to find some Windsor Newton locally last year so I’m curious to see how this works out!

Awesome, thank you for the recommendation! I’ll give that a shot once her arms are painted again!!

Is your varnish put on with a different sponge or cosmetic wedge? Could it be causing a reaction?

I have never had this happen.

Any powders used? Powders lift off on me is I pounce varnish on too thick or too hard of a pounce

I mix satin and matte for my varnish. I pounce it on then let sit about 10-15 minutes then bake. I do not bake longer or hotter than normal. Cool, flip and bake again. (3 times if it seems to need it)

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I don’t know anything about Genesis paints or varnish, but this looks like the same problem I’ve had lately.

I have been using air dry paints that are so hard to get off that I have to strip kits with acetone, yet lately this is what is happening. I have a first quality 3 month Joseph kit that was painting up beautifully thrown in a box because of this. I started painting a Landon, primed this time, painted and left to cure for longer than I normally do. Went to varnish and this happened. It took me months to paint that kit because of an injury, so whatever is beyond irritated is how I feel right now… Oh, forgot to add that I scrubbed Landon real good beforehand to make sure he was super clean because of what happened to Joseph. :roll_eyes:

I’m sorry that you are dealing with this. I’m definitely ready to cry with you. :sob:

Edited to add photos of the first one. This happened even prior to varnish while adding another layer of paint or something like that.


I’ve seen quite a few reports of GHS matte varnish being shiny, lately. It seems to be jars made in the past year, maybe. I’ve used it for six years and never had any shine problems with it but just recently bought a new jar, and have not yet tried it. Afraid it may be shiny. Not sure if they have changed the formula or there was an error in processing.

The only time I’ve had paint lift like this is with a BB kit, and I think it’s because they seem a bit oilier than other kits I’ve used. I think the oil seeps out, even after washing, and may interfere with paint adhesion in kits that are more oily than normal. I now wash my kits in the dish washer and then wipe them down with alcohol wipes, and then rinse them again.


I’m definitely going to try this. Do you use a dishwashing tab like you would use for dishes?

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I use my usual dishwasher liquid and set it on regular cycle, and turn off heated drying. Kits seem really squeaky clean afterward.

I have six finished kits waiting for matte varnish. I really hope it isn’t going to be shiny and doesn’t remove the paint. I’m scared. :dizzy_face:

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What I have been noticing is something similar, but very small, like along an edge. I have been baking twice each time. I bake. Let cool, flip the pieces over and bake again. It seems that the side that is on my towel does not bake the same.

Try applying an air dry primer first. Even if you use Genesis paints. Air dry primer will seal off the vinyl and make the paints stick better. You can bake over it just fine. I recommend one of 2 products. RebornFX primer is my favorite. OR I use Golden Fluid Matte Medium (which says it can be used as a translucent ground) and apply it as a primer. Let your primer dry overnight for best results.

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This happened to me before when the limb was in contact with the towel so I let cool and flipped and baked again but from the area you are showing there is no way it could be that reason… not sure I’m sorry

Angie, would Liquitex Ultra Matte Gel work as a primer?

No. It is not meant to use as a stand alone product.
If a product can be used as a primer it will clearly state on the side of the container that it “can be used as a translucent ground.”

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