With so many products
of which to be aware, it does become quite a task to keep them all straight.
However, there are a few general distinctions that once remembered make
the whole group of gels and mediums seem much less difficult to understand.
The main property
that differentiates a majority of products is viscosity - that is, how
thick or thin a product is. This is what actually separates the gels from
the mediums. The mediums are the thinner products, while the gels are
thicker, having higher viscosities. The mediums are thin enough to be
pourable, while the gels are not.
Within the gel grouping,
the names reflect the scale of viscosity, and not any differences in feel
of dry films. Soft Gels are thinner than Regular Gels, which are thinner
than Heavy Gels, which in turn are thinner than Extra-Heavy Gels. Heavy
Gels do not weigh more, and Soft Gels do not feel spongier or more flexible
The second key property
is reflectance or sheen. This is the most important difference between
Polymer Medium Gloss and Matte Medium. In the gels, nearly all are available
in Gloss, Semi-Gloss and Matte finishes. Hence, a Heavy Gel Gloss and
Heavy Gel Matte will feel very similar in consistency, but will dry with
different sheens. The Semi-Gloss gels dry to yield a similar appearance
as wax, and this aspect has been used extensively to create wax-like impressions.
Then there are the
specialty products that do not fit into the above differentiations. These
products have a unique property requiring a different naming convention.
In such cases, GOLDEN has tried to assign a name that has significance
to the products most unique feature. For instance: High Solid Gels have
higher levels of polymer solids than the other gels (approximately 60%,
versus 45-50%); Light Molding Paste allows for thick film build without
being correspondingly heavy in weight; Pumice Gels are composed of pumice
(volcanic lava) and are ideal for creating rough, granular surfaces; etc.