How to Use Luster Dust Without Alcohol

Luster dust is a versatile product that can be used to add shimmer and shine to your cakes, cookies, cupcakes, macarons, fondant decorations, and more. Luster dust comes in various colors and can be found at most cake or baking supply stores. It is typically sold in small jars with a brush.

how to use luster dust without alcohol

Many bakers use luster dust by mixing it with vodka or another type of alcohol before applying it to their baked goods. This article will explain how to use luster dust without alcohol! First, let’s look at the difference between using luster dust mixed with alcohol versus not using any liquid additives. Then, read on to know more information!

Five Alternative Methods to Use Luster Dust Without Alcohol:

1. Water Clean Up Method:

Place your luster dust into a small, clean container. Add just enough water to create a paste similar in consistency to toothpaste. You can then use the paste on the cake, and it will dry without creating craters or changing its finish. 

2. Glycerin Method:

This method will require you to add a few drops of glycerin into the luster dust before using it. The glycerin creates a protective barrier between the cake and the luster dust that prevents it from changing color or drying in air pockets, creating craters. This is a beneficial technique for layering colors without mixing them and creating a marbleized look to the cake.

3. Modge Podge Method:

The Modge Podge method is similar to the glycerin method. First, add a few drops of water to your brush and dab it into the luster dust. Next, take some Modge Podge mix and brush it on top of the luster dust.

The Cake and the Luster Dust That  Prevents It

The translucent quality of the Modge Podge will protect the luster dust even more than glycerin. In addition, the Modge Podge will dry clear and is easily removable with water before applying fondant or buttercream.

4. Oil-Free Option:

You can break down the oil in some of the cheaper sprays by heating them. Pour some into a clean bowl and place it into boiling water, just enough to cover the bowl. Allow it to sit for 15 minutes before gently removing it with tongs or rubber gloves. Allow the bowl to be set on a cooling rack for an hour before using.

You can also pour some into a clean baby wipe, allow it to soak in, and then pull it out of the container with tongs or rubber gloves. Allow it to dry on a wire rack for 20 minutes.

5. Alkyd Medium:

Add a small amount of alkyd medium (such as Liquitex) to your luster dust. Alkyd medium will dry slower than water and glycerin, but it is less messy and easier to clean up. The downside is that you can’t do as much layering with this method compared to the glycerin method.

Instructions: How to Use Luster Dust Without Alcohol

Step 1:

Start with a clean surface. If you’re using luster dust on anything but fondant, be sure to give the entire area a light dusting of cornstarch so that your luster dust has something to stick to.

Step 2:

Dump some luster dust into the lid of the jar and dip your brush in it. Brush away any excess on the edge of the top before you start applying it to your project.

Dump some luster dust into the lid of the jar

Step 3:

Apply luster dust like paint or ink. Depending on how heavy and opaque you want the color to be, you can use a dry or wet brush. If you’re using a dry brush, build up several layers for more intense colors. If you’re using a wet brush, you only need to dip the tip of your brush into luster dust once.

Step 4:

Let dry or bake according to material type. Luster dust dries quickly with either a dry or wet brush. If you used water for your brush, let your project dry entirely before baking it. If you applied luster dust-dry, it’s okay to immediately place your project in an oven set no higher than 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 5:

Clean up your paintbrush. Use a damp paper towel or disposable rag to wipe off the excess luster dust on the rim of the jar lid and around the bristles of your painting brush before you get started again.

Step 6:

Luster Dust Will  Start to Clump Up

Store your luster dust jar at room temperature. Luster dust will start to clump up if stored in the refrigerator, so keep it at a cool, dry room temperature. Like most food-based ingredients, it has a shelf life of about six months to a year.

Some Tips and Suggestions:

  1. Luster Dust can be used on its own or mixed with other mediums to create your desired surface.
  2. Try using stencils, stamps, sponges, and brushes to add patterns to your projects
  3. Luster dust is essentially cosmetic-grade glitter, so it is very safe for use on skin, lips, nails, etc. However, it should not be used on open wounds.
  4. When using Luster Dust on the skin, mix a small amount of Vaseline or even Chapstick with the luster dust to create a shimmery lip gloss.
  5. Luster Dust can be used as a dry powder or made into paint. To make paint, add a few drops of glycerin to the dry dust and mix with the medium of choice.
  6. For a deeper hue, mix Luster Dust with alcohol to create paint and allow it to dry before use.
  7. To make a dry luster dust paint, add the desired amount to an empty jar and mix with a small amount of water. You can use this as you would regular acrylic paint.


If you are using alcohol to mix your Luster Dust, then stop. Alcohol is an irritant that can cause skin sensitivities or allergies for some people. And if it does not affect the person who applied the product, there is a chance they will come in contact with someone else wearing makeup and have an allergic reaction.

Not only should you be concerned about how much alcohol has been absorbed into your skin, but also what happens when other people touch them after applying their cosmetics? By switching over to water-based formulas,

you eliminate both of these risks while still getting great results! We hope this article has given you some ideas about how to use luster dust without alcohol. If you have any questions or comments, please leave us a note below.

Jennifer Branett
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