Monday, April 14, 2008

A better alternative - Icky Sticky Stuff Remover

Not too long ago, I mentioned a discussion on a stamping forum which started me thinking about possible alternatives to the odorless mineral spirits like Gamsol that are typically used for the Magic Colored Pencil technique. These chemicals are not without their hazards, particularly under conditions of prolonged exposure or for individuals with health issues. I didn't care for the alternative of using baby oil. I'd found that Goo Gone worked, but I mentioned that it still carried warnings similar to that of the odorless mineral spirits, i.e. use in well-ventilated areas. The Mess-free pen was convenient and cut down considerably on the smell, but certainly Goo Gone isn't specifically formulated for artist use, a drawback for some folks.

Today I was doing my grocery shopping and made a discovery as I pushed my cart down the aisle with household cleaners. On the shelf next to the Goo Gone was another product--this one called Icky Sticky Stuff Remover, made by the same folks (Orange-Sol) who make De-Solv-It citrus-based cleaners. What struck me about this was that the label clearly said that it would remove crayon and wax, among other things--this was good because it needs to be able to break down the wax to move the colored pencil pigments; it could be used on skin and hair--usually citrus oil-based solvents carry a warning to avoid exposure to skin because of hypersensitivity reactions; it has no harmful vapors--WOO HOO! for that; and it was artist formula--excellent. Here's a link to the Material Safety Data Sheet for Icky Sticky Stuff Remover (now a.k.a. ISSR on this blog anyway--I have to abbreviate this! LOL!). It's always good to read some of this info for yourself.

So this product sounded like it had potential, but would it work on Prismacolor colored pencils? See what you think.

This is a quickie card that I made this afternoon to try this out. I stamped the flower images by Hero Arts using Archival black ink on a Cuttlebug tag die cut. I then colored the images with my Prismacolor colored pencils and blended the colors using the ISSR and a stump. I added the fibers, layered it on purple DCWV cardstock that I embellished using a Fiskars corner edger then attached it to the cardfront. I stamped the Hero Arts sentiment and added some decorative score lines using my Scor-It.

As of now, the
Icky Sticky Stuff Remover is my magic colored pencil technique "solvent" of choice. It's biodegradable and more environmentally friendly than Gamsol or Sansodor, has no vapors, is formulated for use in arts and crafts, and from what I've read is a much safer alternative to mineral spirits, plus it works. It also cost only $2.99 USD for the 4 oz bottle and is available here in the US, which is more than I can say for some of the other alternatives out there that I would have liked to try. Now I just need to find a way to replace this spray top with a regular screw top lid or dauber top. :-)


  1. I just love your card! I think it is beautiful. I have never tried doing the blending with the colored pencils even though I use Prismacolor pencils a LOT. I will need to try that. Can you post again where you said you bought ISSR please? Thanks and again you did a great job. It is really pretty.

  2. Lovely card! Even better, the ISSR probably won't aggravate my asthma the way Gamsol and Goo Gone do! Going to give this a try! Thank you! E. Hansen, Chester County, PA


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