Painting a jig is sort of like the dead end barricade on the end of a road, once its done it goes to the box. Head can be sprayed or dipped with just about any sort of finish but for me the fun starts with what I am going to dip into or spray. Personally I am a powder coat dude for the jigheads and those heads get dipped so some may ask, "how do you get to this other level"? Its not so much the paint...its what I put in it.
Glitter probably is the first thing people use to change the paint either by adding directly to the paint of by using in a clear as a top coat. It works well but I loathe big flake glitter on a jig head....makes those heads look like something off the Vegas Strip. I like micro glitter and think of it as an embellishment, something to add a subtle something to the paint to make the color dance when its studied. I use the Do-It micro glitter sold in the 1 ounce jars in the powder coating area on their internet sales site or page 81 of the physical catalog. This glitter is ultra fine and lays down flat so the finish is not sandpaper rough. I add this glitter, depending on color, directly to colored candy or transparent powder paint and the resulting finish is ten times what the paint only finish looks like. Just this small addition will put a whole new life in jig head finishes, and I do not undercoat the heads before applying the powder coat. And for the plastic addicts, this glitter is a real sleeper for adding just a "little extra" to transparent plastic recipes....the fire opal micro glitter goes into all of my super sparkle clear belly color which helps to opaque it without using a pearling agent. Those opting to spray or airbrush liquid paints using this glitter should also do a test to see it the glitter will pass the nozzle before doing any actual painting. This micro glitter is very fine but then some air brush nozzles defy tiny.
Glitter is only one way to apply some torque to head colors. Automotive pearling additives will also breathe life into common colors and again I use powder paint to do this except I use clear gloss to start with. This process involves a second immediate dip into a clear coat that's been enhanced with a small amount of the hi liting pearl color. Custom finished on cars, boats, motorcycles....you name it.... is where you'll see this used as a sprayed finish. In one light the car might look blue yet at another angle is definitely purple or orange/gold is another example, but powder paint is another way to apply it. www.paintwithpearl.com
offers some super nice agents to work with but the key here is to use very small amounts of the pearling hi lite powder in a clear top coat This will allow a color shift seen when the finished head is turned in your hand or run thru sunlight to shade. The top coat in this instance is an illusion color. Looking at it dead on it looks like, say, transparent purple yet a shift of angle shows a cherry red over-tone to it. I have a purple pearl from PWP that is blended with a clear as a top coat that goes on all of my purple, black and blue heads' I have a duplex hot pink/tangerine that goes on all of my orange and hot pink heads. The results are uncanny. I will just add here that these automotive "pearls" or hi lites are tinted so using them in small amounts of any paint should. or has to, be done in moderation or the outcome will be defeated. Rosy's 200% clear powder coat is a very inexpensive clear to use for playtime and does a super job of thinning down Pro Tec colors, something I do regardless of how I think they lay from the factory jar. Just google Rosey's 200% clear and you'll find the site.
Now if you are a plastics maker you will most probably have hi lite powder. These colors too can be blended into a clear gloss powder to achieve the same sort of surface sheen effects seen when they are added to plastic. The automotive pearl/hi lites have some tinting so do trial runs to be certain that they would defeat you color batch. Personally I add small amounts to clear being used as belly colors. I'll also brush apply these colors to plastics and clear coat them to seal the effects.
After market pearling agents, like those I have just described along with the hi lite powders are compatible with air brushing paints of all types and in many regards it will be air brushing or sprayed finishes that will give the best results on larger, flatter surface areas when applied as a clear top coat. Do-It's CS coatings can be thinned and these hi lite/pearls be used as a dipping paint but I recommend adding these agents to clear for use as a second, after drying, top coat dip and used before applying eyes.
On this forum Fatman has contributed a lot of stuff on paint and color. He is a master at powder and has shown a ton of his paint concoctions here and at a couple other sites that employ the use of the automotive hi lite/pearl agents and they can be stunning. I've learned a lot from him and just wanted to share that when it comes to the painting, it can be way more than just applying a color and many of these products jump from paint to plastic in a heartbeat and offer up some unreal beauty in those areas. If you want jigs or tackle that says "WOW", this is the way to do it. Does it do anything to catch more fish? I have no idea but I do know that my jigs catch the attention of an awful lot of anglers as well as fish and that in itself is a super confidence maker.