I just need to simply add freckles onto my characters face.

I have a skin material which makes up my character completely. Then I add a new material for an area on her face which I want to have freckles. It is a png image with a transparent background.

I can kind of figure out how to make the actual alpha transparent with alpha blend and backface culling but I cannot understand how to reveal the underlying material as well.

I have looked up guides or tutorials on the shader nodes and cannot find anything. I tried it myself and it was a fail. Can someone please help me understand how I can do this?

  • $\begingroup$ are you using EEVEE or Cycles? $\endgroup$ Jun 2, 2021 at 19:28
  • $\begingroup$ So with all of my attempts, I have switched between both. I work in Evee but I do swap to cycles to see the results. Nothing different so far. :( $\endgroup$
    – Kewkimb
    Jun 2, 2021 at 23:08

1 Answer 1


Here is a UV sphere that I am going to use as an example. The currently selected area represents where you might want the freckles. I'm going to use a candle flame but the principle is the same.

enter image description here

Imagine that this is your "skin" material:

"skin" material.

In the Material properties window, add another material slot and also assign it to the skin material:

2nd material slot

Select "Add as new material" to create a copy of the skin material:

duplicate material

rename it if you would like. Then select assign to assign it to the faces where you want the freckles. assign the new material

I need an additional couple steps you may not. I marked the boundaries of the new area with seams in the UV editor, and selected the area to create a new UV Map using 'unwrap' from the UV menu:

UV Unwrap

UV Map

Modify the "skin with freckles" shader to add my alpha mixing nodes

modified skin with freckles material

and here's the result

flame on skin

You'll want to do the UV editing differently than I did, of course, to match your model.

  • $\begingroup$ Thank you so much for answering so quick. Here are a couple videos so you can see my issue. I did try both of your solutions and perhaps they worked but since I am so confused about what settings to change when it comes to creating an alpha channel, that is the only issue. The first video with purple skin is my origonal and the second video has both of your nodes with the results. If you notice, on the second attempt, some subsurface scattering came through interestingly enough. youtube.com/watch?v=yW3UBPQEzAw youtube.com/watch?v=IzApbhT6PTo $\endgroup$
    – Kewkimb
    Jun 2, 2021 at 21:32
  • $\begingroup$ You need to modify the material that makes the purple skin and add the image texture and mix node to that material. $\endgroup$ Jun 2, 2021 at 22:51
  • $\begingroup$ I went ahead and adjusted my (skin) mat which was the purple that was then changed to a skin color. I assigned that base material to the entire person so I could follow these steps with your last comment. Unfortunately I didn't get any different results in terms of the alpha issue. But only a small area on her face should have freckles. The material I have been using called freckles is basically a skin material that has the image texture to combine. It is okay if it is off a bit color wise to the main skin mat since I can adjust. Thank you for your help! Any other ideas I can try? :o $\endgroup$
    – Kewkimb
    Jun 2, 2021 at 23:12
  • $\begingroup$ Let me edit my answer to give you a better step by step example. $\endgroup$ Jun 3, 2021 at 3:02
  • $\begingroup$ I am still having the issue and I super duper apprecieate your detailed answer with step by step and photos. I am currently collecting all the info I can to build a better video as far as my attempts and to show my setup is the same. At this point I am lead to believe it is a minor alpha setting issue but I need to research just a bit more. I have tried evee and cycles but I am wondering if I do not have an alpha channel setup yet $\endgroup$
    – Kewkimb
    Jun 7, 2021 at 21:35

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