How to Create a Unicorn Horn and Hold it on Your Forehead

how to make a unicorn horn

Whether you’re dressing up as a unicorn for Halloween, cosplaying as a galarian ponyta, or just want to be a narwhal, you’ll have to make a horn to match your costume. If you’re ambitious, you might also try to find a way to attach the horn directly to your forehead or at least hide the part that is holding up the horn. Either way, I got you covered.

There are two types of unicorn horns that I’ll go over in this tutorial. The first is a single-twist horn that has a more realistic look, while the second method twists multiple separate strands together to create a more cartoon-style unicorn horn. You can use multiple colors for either method, or even add glitter or a shimmer powder to the clay.

I used polymer clay for both of these tutorials, but other types of clay can also work well. I chose polymer clay because it’s easy to find in a wide variety of colors, so you don’t have to worry about trying to neatly paint all the twists of the horn later on.

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unicorn horn
Make a single twist unicorn horn

Single-twist unicorn horn

A single-twist horn is when you have one cone of clay that you twist into a horn-like shape. It has a more realistic horn appearance and you can make it super thin by continuing to twist and stretch the horn. You can also make the horn thicker, shorter, longer, or whatever you want.

Supplies you will need:

twisting the horn
Roll out the clay for the horn into one tapered cylinder. Then gently twist and pull the clay to create the horn.
shaping the horn base and adding details
You can use clay tools to add details and ridges. Shape the base of the horn by cutting it at an angle and pressing in against your forehead or the item you will be using as the base of your horn.
Add 1-2 layers of varnish to your horn to give it some shine.
  1. Roll clay into the shape of a cone. Make sure it’s shorter than you want the final horn to be because you will be stretching the clay as you twist. If you want to use multiple colors for a swirled look, knead the two colors of clay together into the cone shape.
  2. Twist horn starting at the base. Starting at the base of the cone, gently pull as you twist the clay. Continue twisting and pulling section by section until you reach the tip of the clay.
  3. Add extra ridges with a clay tool if desired. If you want more defined ridges, use a toothpick or clay tool to add details to your horn twist.
  4. Attach the horn to a head piece or flatten the base against your forehead. Depending on how you intend to attach the horn, you want to mold the bottom of the horn to fit. First cut the base at a diagonal, them press it against your forehead or your headpiece. For this horn, I pressed it against my forehead so that I could attach it directly with spirit gum once it’s finished. (more information at the bottom of this article)
  5. Bake the clay. For Sculpey brand, you should bake the clay for 15 minutes and 275ºF (135ºC) for every ¼ inch thick the clay is. The temperature and time will vary depending on the brand of clay you use. When it’s ready, remove your horn from the oven and allow it to cool completely.
  6. Apply varnish to the clay. Once cooled, you can apply a varnish to the horn to give it a little bit of shine. It makes the horn have a more finished look.
a double twist horn
Using two or more strands to create a unicorn horn.

Double-twist unicorn horn

For this method, you use two strands of clay and twist them around each other rather than twisting one single cone of clay. This method creates horns that have a slightly more cartoonish look, which will work well for a lot of anime horns or shows like My Little Pony. You can actually use as many different colors as you want for this style of horn. You can twist them all together or braid them to get your desired effect.

Supplies you will need:

twisting the horn
Roll our two tapered cylinders of clay. They should be the same length but the can be different widths. Then twist the two strands around each other.
roll the clay
Roll the horn against the table to create a more defined shape and ridges.
form the base of the horn
Cut the base of the horn at a diagonal and form it onto the item you’re using for the horn base. In this case, a hair clip.
add varnish
After baking, add varnish to the horn to give it a shine.
  1. Create two cones of clay (or more if you want three colors). You can make each of the cones a separate color like I did, or you can use the same color for a monochrome horn. You can also make the cones different widths if you want to as long as they are the same length.
  2. Twist the two cones around each other. Wrap the two strands of clay around each other all the way to the tip of the horn. (or you can braid three or more cones of clay)
  3. Roll the horn. Gently roll the horn against the table to combine the colors a little and create ridges. The more you roll it, the flatter the ridges will become.
  4. Attach the horn to a head piece or press the base against your forehead. For this horn, I attached it to a metal hair clip that I could clip onto the edge of my wig. I molded the horn around the clip and baked it attached. (see more information is the following section)
  5. Bake the clay. Check the instructions for the brand of clay you are using. For Sculpey, bake your horns for 15 minutes for every ¼ thick they are at 275ºF (135ºC)
  6. Apply varnish to the clay. Once the clay cools, finish the horn with a layer or two of varnish.

How to attach the horn to your head

You can get as creative as you want when deciding how to attach the unicorn horn to your forehead. However, it’s best to choose your method before you create your horn and bake your clay. This way you can mold the base of your horn so that it will fit exactly onto your headpiece (or directly onto your forehead)

Generally what you will do is cut the base of the horn at an angle. Then press that against your forehead or mold it around your head piece. If the head piece you’re using is metal, you can bake your horn directly onto it.

using a hair clip as a base
I used a hair clip that I could slide under a wig as a base.

Using a hair clip

It is much easier to plan on attaching your unicorn horn with some type of hair clip or headdress than to try adhering it directly to your skin. You can either bake the clay horn directly onto the headpiece that you’re using, or you can glue it on after the clay has cooled. If you bake the clay directly onto your clip or headpiece, you can cover the edges of the headpiece and make it a little more invisible.

If you want to bake the corn directly onto your headpiece, the piece it’s being connected to must be metal. If you try to bake it onto something plastic, it will probably start to melt during the baking process.

I decided to use these hair clips that I found with a little base on one end. I could slide these under the edge of my wig on my forehead so you can hardly see the clip at all. But it probably wouldn’t work as well if you intend to use your real hair.

putting the clip on the wig

Some other ideas for creating a base or headpiece for your unicorn horn:

  • Poke a hole toward the base of the horn (before baking), and then thread some clear string or elastic through the hole to hold it on your forehead.
  • Glue the horn to a headband that you wear toward the front of your head.
  • Use a decorative piece of forehead jewelry or forehead tiara to use as a base (something like this)
press the horn to your forehead
Use mastix spirit gum to attach the horn to your forehead. Cleanse your forehead and attach the horn before applying any makeup.

Using a skin adhesive (spirit gum)

If you want to go the extra mile and make it look like your unicorn horn is coming from your forehead, you can use an adhesive to attach the clay directly. For this to work you need to use a strong adhesive and make a horn that’s on the smaller side.

I recommend making a horn that is no more than two and a half inches long to make it more likely the horn will stick in place. The one I made is slightly longer (about three and a half inches) and I was able to get it to stick to my forehead. However, I could tell that the horn did not have as strong a hold as I would like. It definitely would not have lasted for an entire day cosplaying, so I recommend making yours a little smaller.

The other aspect that will make attaching the horn to your forehead more successful is using a strong adhesive.Since clay is a little heavier than silicone prosthetics, cheap spirit gum might not work well enough. You’ll probably want to invest in the high end stuff that has a better sticking power. Mastix spirit gum is much better at holding prosthetics in place and should work well for a small unicorn horn. Pros-Aide is another heavy duty adhesive that is safe to use on the skin. (don’t forget to get spirit gum remover or Pros-Aide remover if you use these products)

Emily Joice

My name is Emily, and I have been Cosplaying Since my very first convention in 2008. Over the years I've learned a lot of new skills that have helped me become better and making cosplay and looking good for the camera.

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