I'm quite surprised at the complexity of the instructions on treating each gasket in a different way and to use different compounds in different places. Probably written with the advice of the sealant manufacturers ;o))
Most of our engines are not operating at anything like their rated output and don't get as hot or as cold as they once did, both of these factors will contribute to the self basting (I like that!) facility.
Since silicone sealant appeared on the scene about twenty years ago, I've never willingly used anything else and as it will readily withstand 600c unless exposed to a flame, I use it on doubtful head gaskets, too!
However, I rarely use it as the maker intended. I take a SMALL amount on both finger and thumb and work it into the gasket on both sides. Then I put it aside to cure. 24 hours later, I have a paper gasket with a rubberised face both sides and they simply don't leak, even if the cases are less than perfect. This works on second hand paper gaskets too as long as they are sound to begin with.
Occasionally, you'll get a paper gasket that has shrunk. You can resurrect these by letting them soak in boiling water for an hour. When the water is cool, they'll have stretched and will fit the cases. Prepare as above.