SLIK - slippery non-stick stuff for metal clay!
Slik is the balm made just for metal clay. It's smooth and silky, not sticky like olive-oil based balms.
Slik is made from all natural ingredients like pure soy, almond and aloe. Slik forms a barrier between the clay and whatever you apply it to that works better than anything else.
Slik also makes a superior clay conditioning agent for Art Clay, PMC, BRONZclay and COPPRclay. Rather than adding water and creating a muddy, slippery mess that dries out quickly, condition with a very small amount of Slik to create a clay with a wonderful texture that stays moist much longer and is much less sticky. To condition metal clay with Slik, first apply Slik to your hands. Then press your lump clay into a patty using your fingers. The patty should be a little more than 1/16" thick. Butter the patty with Slik and fold the sides in, then knead the lump for a few seconds to be sure all the Slik is incorporated. You'll feel the difference immediately and you'll love how much easier it is to work with. You'll also find you have to add less water and that the clay stay workable much longer.
IMPORTANT: If you add too much of the product to lump clay, the clay can begin to lose its ability to hold together - use it sparely if using it for conditioning! If your clay becomes crumbly, add a bit of fresh clay to the ball and knead it into the lump.
I've been working with Art Clay Silver for about 6 years now, and I finally came to the end of the tiny pot I bought with my first packet. It as official ACS balm, and worked well, so I wanted to replace it with more of the same. I'm so pleased it wasn't available because this is FABULOUS. I make a lot of mistakes, and reconstitute many (okay, most!) of my pieces, (the new formula makes this so much easier) but this always used to be quite a messy process with the old balm - I'd always end up with a bit wasted on my fingers. Not with this new Slik - it is perfect. The only thing I'd like to improve is the tin. although it's a great size, and nice and shallow and wide so I can get it on my fingers and not up my nails, it doesn't have a screw cap, so the lid doesn't fit as well as it might. However, the contents override this flaw!! I cannot recommend this highly enough.
A little goes a long way, great for keeping clay workable and stopping it from sticking without it making the clay too sticky itself.
As others have said, a little goes a long way. It spreads very easily and is great for especially making the prometheus copper clay easier to handle. It stops it from discolouring your hands also. Just roll some clay out, rub in some of this balm and the clay becomes more flexible and stops cracking as easily. Just beware, if you are used to Badger Balm, this is not as firm as that in the tin; on first use I pushed too hard on the balm and my finger made a big divot in it :-) One other benefit I found is that it is odourless, so if you didn't like Badger Balm because of its smell, this is a great alternative.
At the moment I'm working a lot with molds and this is the best stuff for releasing the clay from the molds. I brush it in all the nooks and crannies and once the clay has dried it just falls out!
I have one of these baby tins in my portable kit that I take to jewellery parties. I work a tiny bit into my clay before using it and it stops it from sticking to rolling surfaces and tools, and rubbing a little onto my hands stops me from sticking to the clay! A little goes a long way so it's very economical.