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Can You Use Wax Paper for Shrinky Dinks?

If your Shrinky Dinks never seem to stay flat, you might wonder if there’s an easy way to fix them. A simple method would be to lay parchment paper over them while they bake, but do any other materials work?

So, can you use wax paper on your Shrinky Dinks? You can’t use wax paper with heat. It can smoke, melt, and even catch fire since it doesn’t resist heat well. It’s sure to ruin your creations and could even become dangerous!

Luckily, there are other materials you can use for Shrink Dinks, not counting wax paper. You probably already have some of them in your kitchen. Let’s keep reading to learn more!

How To Use Wax Paper for Shrinky Dinks

As mentioned above, you shouldn’t use wax paper for this project. The wax melts and can even become a fire hazard. You can use any wax paper you already have for other crafts, but please never use it near a heat source. 

Instead of putting the wax paper in the oven, you can always use it to wrap your completed Shrinky Dinks and prevent them from chipping in storage. You can use other types of oven-safe paper to make shrink plastic instead. Some of these options include:

Using all these different materials to make your plastic charms is easy. All you need to do is cover the Shrinky Dinks with a thin sheet, then bake them normally. The additional weight from the paper can help them to lay flat.

Overall, you shouldn’t put wax paper in the oven, and there isn’t a way to make it safe. Other types of baking paper are the better, safer choice for making your shrinkles. You don’t want to put yourself in danger to make Shrinky Dinks.

Can You Use Aluminum Paper for Shrink Dinks?

You can safely use aluminum foil for this craft and get excellent results! The foil is much heavier than the other baking papers, making it great if you have stubborn designs that always want to curl.

Here’s how you can easily use aluminum paper when baking your plastic cutouts:

  • Pull the aluminum foil out of the box, but don’t cut it yet. Make sure there’s enough to cover the baking sheet. 
  • Set your plastic cutouts on the foil, ensuring they don’t touch each other and have plenty of room.
  • Pull more foil out and stretch it over the cutouts. You want it to sit on the designs lightly.
  • Cut the foil and bake your plastic cutouts as usual.

The weight of the aluminum foil should keep the shrinkles flat. While it’s normal for them to curl some in the oven, the layer of foil will press down on them, so they come out of the oven completely flat. You can also push on the foil with a spatula while the plastic is still hot.

What Can I Use Instead of Shrinky Dink Paper?

If you want to make Shrinky Dinks but don’t have the official plastic sheets, don’t worry! You can still make them easily. All you need to do is find some polystyrene, which isn’t as hard as you might think.

Polystyrene is any plastic that has the number six on the bottom in the recycle symbol. It’s the same type of material that the Shrinky Dink company uses in their craft paper so that it will shrink similarly. You can usually find plastic cups and clamshell takeout boxes with the number six.

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Once you have your plastic, you’ll need to cut it and try to force it to become flat. Sometimes leaving a heavy book on the plastic can help. From there, you can follow the same instructions that Shrinky Dinks use. Some inks, colored pencils, and Sharpies work great on these plastics.

Check out my other article that talks about using Sharpies on Shrinky Dinks.

For example, preheat your oven to 325℉ (165℃) and bake your designs for one to two minutes. You’ll see the shrink plastic curl, then fall flat. After it’s flat, you’ll need to wait at least thirty seconds for it to set. You don’t want to wait much longer than that, or the plastic can warp, melt, or bubble.  

Can You Use Parchment Paper for Shrink Dinks?

Parchment paper works exceptionally well for making plastic charms. Most parchment paper brands can also withstand very high temperatures. Some can go up to 450℉ (232℃) or slightly higher, which is more than enough for this craft. However, you will want to check the packaging to ensure the paper can withstand the temperatures you need for your project.

You can use parchment paper similar to aluminum foil when making shrinkles. The plastic cutouts should sit between a layer of parchment so they don’t stick to the baking sheet. Having the parchment paper wrap over the designs also ensures they don’t warp as much. It’s very effective and simple.

So, if you have a design that always wants to curl, then parchment paper can be a huge help. You’ll often find that it helps your charms lay flat and gives them a crisper edge. Suppose you want your charms to look even better. In that case, you can always apply a sealant layer when they cool for a professional finish.

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Overall, parchment paper is the best kind of paper for making shrink-plastic. It keeps your designs flat and is easy to find in any store. It also doesn’t block your vision as much as aluminum foil, allowing you to see if the designs curl while baking.

Final Thoughts

To summarize, putting wax paper in the oven is very dangerous. In the best-case scenario, it melts and sticks to your shrink-plastic designs. In the worst-case scenario, the paper burns or catches on fire. Either way, it’s going to ruin your Shrinky Dinks.

Instead of wax paper, you’ll use parchment paper or aluminum foil. You’ll get much better results for your shrinkles that way. Plus, these materials are very common in most grocery stores and are often easier to find than wax paper.

Make sure to follow all my tips and recommended products to ensure your Shrinky Dinks project turns out great! Also, don’t forget to check out my other articles for all your painting Q&A’s. Happy painting!