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underglaze troubles

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So I sculpt a lot of face planters and like to use Amaco velvet beige as the base skin tone.  I started having the underglaze develop small bubbles at cone 5 ( I applied at greenware & I do not apply any clear glaze over the underglaze) I spoke to tech. support at Amaco and they said most likely it was old and the gum had deteriorated.  I mixed up some cmc gum and began adding gradually to no effect.  Finally I added more than 1/4 cup to the pint. I got 1 good firing, then the problem was back.  I am willing to throw out the rest of what I have and start over but now I am worried I will buy new and it's been on a shelf somewhere and already be old.  So 2 questions 1. If I buy new how can I be sure it's not already old, and # 2. any ideas for acrylic washes or oil paint washes as a matt finish for my faces ?


Edited by Val
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