Smart Materials and Masks


Substance Painter supports the use of advanced layer presets. These presets can be used to quickly share across Texture Sets or Projects a similar texturing process while keeping the results different, adapted to the mesh topology.

Note that once added in the layer stack, there is no way to retrieve which smart material was used. In the case a smart material need to updated, the process will have to be done manually.
However individual resources can be updated with the Resources Updater.

How to use Smart Materials/Masks ?

Smart Materials can be used anywhere in the layer stack, while smart masks can only be used in the effect stack.
To know more about the differences, see : Layer Stack and Effects

Adding a Smart Material

Smart Materials can be added in two different ways :

  • By drag and dropping a smart materials from the shelf into the layer stack :


  • By clicking on the Smart Material button to open a mini-shelf :

Adding a Smart Mask

Because Smart Masks are presets of effects, they can therefor only be added to effect stacks (for mask specifically).

  • To add a Smart Masks, simply drag and drop one from the Shelf onto the target layer : 


  • Drag and dropping multiple Smart Masks will accumulate them : 


  • It is possible however to replace the whole effect stack by pressing CTRL during the drag and drop :  

How to create Smart Materials/Masks ?

To create a Smart Materials, a folder is required.
The content of the Smart Materials will be contained in the folder. Then simply right-click on the folder and select "Create smart material". The Smart Material will then be added to the current shelf and will be named accoridng to the folder selected.


To create a Smart Mask, simply right-click over a layer and choose "Create smart mask".

How to share/retrieve a smart material/mask ?

The presets are saved on the disk and can be retrieved from their dedicated folder.
To find the shelf location, see : Adding content on the hard drive.

Then anybody can simply import the file into their Substance Painter shelf to use the preset.