is acrylic paint waterproof? protect your paint

Acrylic paints are versatile and fast-drying. It’s inexpensive, so it’s ideal for various projects. You may already know how to use acrylic paint, but is acrylic paint waterproof?

Acrylic paint is slightly water-resistant but not completely waterproof. You can seal the paint so that it becomes more water-resistant. Depending on the surface type, you may need to use different tools and techniques. You must also prep the surface before using the product for excellent results.

We’ll talk about acrylic paints and how they’re made. At the end of the post, we’ve included a list of top paint and coatings brands for all your project needs

How does acrylic paint act with the water?

Acrylic paints aren’t waterproof. If your outdoor paint finish isn’t properly sealed with an acrylic paint sealant, it will wash off with the first rainfall. Even though the paint will stick to a surface when it is dry, it will wash away if exposed to water while still wet.

Paint can peel off or chip after it has dried. It may be best to use a sealant or primer first. Therefore, applying an acrylic sealant or polyurethane varnish is essential to finish the paintwork so that it lasts longer.

is acrylic paint waterproof

This article will cover how to make your acrylic projects water-resistant. You’ll come across why it’s vital to waterproof an acrylic painting, but first, let’s look at some of the benefits of using acrylic


. You’ll know whether acrylic paint is waterproof on specific surfaces.

Does Water Wipe Away Acrylic Paint?

Outdoor paints are not recommended because they’re not waterproof. However, there is a solution to this problem. Waterproofing your paintings is easy if you use acrylic sealing agents. They help them live longer.

Doing some fine prep work on the top layer of the skin is vital for achieving a great result. The surface must be smooth, dry, and free from imperfections and cracks. It should not have any roughness or scratches.

The following steps will help you prepare for painting on different surfaces.

Normal Wood

  • Patch any nail holes, damaged walls, cracks, and joints with plaster.
  • If you want to remove any appearance of sanding, use a tack cloth.
  • Use a primer to fill holes and cracks and smooth out rough patches and bare wood.

Plaster Walls

  • Wash the carpet with a mixture of white vinegar and water (a pint of household vinegar and a gallon of water).
  • Keep applying the cream until you achieve a hard skin surface.
  • Rinse with clear tap water, then let it dry.
  • Use primer on it before applying makeup.


  • Glue the panels together
  • Before starting the painting, could you fill-up the joint spaces and tape them?
  • If the patching materials and the joint cement are dehydrated when carrying out the sand smoothing, then you should wait until they’ve been moistened before you start priming.


  • Before starting the painting, permanently remove any wallpapers. Use a steam cleaner or chemical-based wallpaper removal product to remove wallpaper from walls.
  • After the wallpaper has been removed, wash away any remaining adhesive.
  • Clean the wall with water and allow it to dry completely before applying primer (or any paint).

Previously Painted Surfaces

    • Cleaning off any oil, soapy buildup, or greasy residue using the right cleaner for the specific type of residue will help keep your skin looking its best. Rinse thoroughly.
    • Remove any powdery substances and loose paints from the surface.
    • Patching or spackling compounds can patch up small cracks and holes if there are any. Let it dry, then use a sanding block to smooth out any rough edges.

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  • If you’re working on a nonporous or


    surface, use fine-grit sandpaper to give the surface a dull finish. Then wipe off any dust with a cloth dampened with water.
  • Remove any residue left by the cleanser or sandpaper.
  • Ensure all bare areas are well-primed, then apply the top coat for best results. Don’t use “spot priming,” as it will make your artwork look uneven.

Concrete, Block, and Cement

  • Whenever you buy a new piece of furniture, follow the manufacturer’s instructions for treating the surface. Most of the time, these instructions are given for 30 days.
  • Remove all ingredients that contain any curing agent.
  • Fill up all rough surfaces with smooth surfaces.
  • If the paint job cannot stand up to 30 days of exposure to the elements, wait seven days before applying a masonry primer.

Before applying any paint, carrying out these steps may help prolong the life of your paint job.

What Makes Acrylic Paint so unique?

What Makes Acrylic Paint so unique?

Acrylic is a type of water-based paint made from acrylic polymers. This design makes the water evaporate quickly. The paint is drying as long as the water in color is evaporating. However, there is more than meets the eye when holding the particles together.

Here are the essential fundamentals that make up acrylic paint.

  • Binder: Resin: Acryl­ic resin is the b. It helps separate the color from the pigment so that it stays put when the paint dries.
  • Powder: The powder is a substance that adds color to your paints.
  • The base is the liquid that holds the pigment and binder together.

If you see the ingredients in acrylic paint begin to separate, you may be able to see them better. Before the paint dries, it’s the binder that comes out first. You may have trouble painting if you buy cheap paints or don’t properly store your paints. Once again, mix the ingredients back together to make the paint.

Manufacturers also vary by ingredient. The exact formula varies depending on the price point, so different brands may offer different pigment proportions for the same color. Some paints contain additives to help them spread evenly or prevent them from foaming. Cheaper manufacturers may use cheaper materials to cut costs, like filler or dyes, instead of natural pigments.

How to Choose Between Varnish and Sealer

You can use a varnish or sealant to help acrylic paint last


and protect against water damage. Varnish is used primarily for wood surfaces, while varnishes come in various colors and finishes.

You can use either option in a spray or liquid format, so you can apply it however you’d like.


options are typically more straightforward than roll-on options because they cut down on the application and drying time. They’re also great for applying thin coats of paint.


is a clear or colored coating, sometimes called lacquer. It is used to protect wood surfaces from water damage. It’s an excellent finishing agent for wood surfaces. According to MedlinePlus, var­nish or paint may be harmful to breathe for a prolonged period. Hydrocarbons are poisonous too.

There are pros and cons to using sealants, but the potential for harm varies depending on the type of sealant used. The ingredients determine which products contain a higher concentration of toxins and the potential health risks they pose to humans.

Using varnish requires more care than using paint. Varnishes containing these chemicals are dangerous to inhale.

A 1998 study

found varnish emits carcinogens 115 days after using the product.

On the one hand, the varnishes are beneficial because they usually contain UV protection in their formulas or other additives to protect them from fading. Varnish can turn anything into something water-resistant.

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If you’re unsure whether the paint has dried completely, acrylic varnishes are also good choices. With acrylic paints, you can usually cover up most mistakes, so you don’t need to know if you’ve finished painting before sealing and protecting your work.

Depending on your project, you may want to use one of these options. Both protect your paint from chipping and seal your work, so it doesn’t get damaged. For the best results, consider the surface and paint type.

What Makes Varnish Water Resistant?

Sealants are products used to protect surfaces from damage by water. Varnish adds an extra layer of protection by bringing a sealing layer to your works. After using varnishes, you could paint objects outdoors without worrying about rain damaging them. It’s waterproof because of its ingredients.

Varnish only contains a few main ingredients, which include:

  • Oil
  • Resin
  • solvent

The formula may include additional additives depending on which varnish you use and whether you want UV protection or anti-aging properties.

How to make Acrylic paint waterproof?

If you want to make your acrylic paint water-resistant, apply varnish to it. To make your acrylic paint water-resistant, you must use suitable materials. Luckily, varnishing is easy to do.

It is essential to apply var­nish correctly and patiently. Slow and steady will ensure that you don’t leave any fingerprints or anything detrimental to your art. The proper techniques will ensure that the paint appears evenly applied and give you the desired result.

Here are the different types of surfaces and how you can protect them from water.

How to waterproof Acrylic paint on Canvas?

Canvas is one type of media that artists use to paint. With Gesso primer, it’s easy to prepare a canvas surface. It doesn’t matter if you use a brush or a palette knife, but using a meeting makes the connection more robust than using a palette knife.

You can use a clean brush to apply the varnish to the surface of your acrylic painting. When the acrylic paint has dried, you must ensure that there aren’t any dirt or paint particles left on the surface. This helps ensure the pigments shine through and highlight your artwork.

After applying the last layer of varnish, let it cure overnight so that the paint layers and varnish bond well together.

On Metals

Acrylic paints stick well to metal surfaces. Acrylic paint is considered the best option for painting metal because it’s the most durable. Many household items, including picture frames, lamp bases, door knobs, and handles, look good when painted with acrylic paint.

For this purpose, the best varnish is the Poly Varnishing Wax. You can use any varnish for metal surfaces.

Unlike canvases, which need several coats of varnish to be finished appropriately, metal surfaces require just a single coat of varnish.

How to waterproof Acrylic paint on Canvas?

How to make Acrylic paint waterproof on wood?

Varnishing wood changes its appearance and gives it a shiny, polished finish. Once the paintwork has been completed, applying a polyurethane varnish will help protect it from further damage. Applying double coatings is essential to achieve this result using two coats of paint.

If you’re having trouble with this problem, use polyurethane or another kind of wood varnish. Regardless of which type of polytype you use, wait at least 24 hours between the first and second coat. If you do this, the varnished wood will bond well to the whole wooden surface, making it shiny and immune to contact from any liquid.

How to make acrylic paint waterproof on Masonite

Wood fiber is a type of wood that has been made into Masonite. Varnishing Masonite is relatively simple and similar to that of ordinary wood. Apply a layer of polymer varnish over any remaining acrylic paint on the surface.

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You don’t need two coats for Masonite surfaces because their finish is more delicate than regular wood. Make sure that the paint has dried completely before applying the sealant.

On Medium Density Fiber (MDF)

Another type of wood is MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard). It has a texture and density similar to that of Masonite. However, the main difference between these two materials is that the MDF has a more rigid surface than the Masonite.

Some crafters prefer MDF boards to Masonite boards because of the difference in their rigidity. The first step is priming the surface of the MDF canvas using gesso or any other type of primer. This will ensure that the paint sticks properly to the surface. To waterproof an MDF surface, apply one coat of polymer varnish to the acrylic paint.

How to make acrylic paint waterproof On Plastic

Most paints won’t go well on plastic surfaces, but some types will. Acrylic paint is one of the best mediums for painting. With acrylic paints, you can change the color of your plastic objects to whatever color you want. They last on plastic surfaces for an extended period.

However, you need to apply several coats of paint to achieve good results. Otherwise, the color may peel off the surface faster than expected. Once you’ve completed the paintwork on a piece of Plastic, you can apply a clear coat to it. You can use one or two coats of paint to give your


a protective layer against spills.

Is acrylic paint waterproof: FAQ

Is acrylic paint waterproof on wood?

Acrylic paints are not waterproof on wood and won’t last long. Before beginning your painting project, you must first prepare the surface. Most importantly, sealing your painting with an acrylic paint sealer will strengthen the work done on your painting, thereby increasing its longevity.

Is acrylic paint waterproof on fabric?

Acrylic paints don’t become waterproof when they dry on fabric. To make your paint finish water-resistant, use a water-based sealant. A fabric medium is a mixture of solvents and paint that alters the properties of the paint so that it dries faster and has better adhesion. This way, the paint won’t be damaged by water.

Are acrylic paints waterproof on Plastic?

Acrylic paints cannot be used on Plastic because they won’t become waterproof after drying. They may crack if you try to use them on Plastic. Acrylic paint was never intended to be used on plastic surfaces. It’s essential to use a sealant after finishing any painting project.

Is acrylic paint waterproof on metal?

Acrylic paints are perfect for painting on metal surfaces but won’t dry up as a water-resistant material on them. It has some properties to resist water, but it will eventually soften if exposed to water for an extended period.

Should I use Resin or Polymer varnishes?

Varnish finishes will give you a shin­ier, clearer, and sturdier finish. Resins are toxic and not water-soluble. Use them in a well-ventilated area and clean up afterward using mineral spirits. To get a more matte or satiny finish, use an isolation coating (1 part varnish to 2 parts water)



for humans and pets so you can use it without worry. If you want a more matte finish, use an isolation coating with your acrylic polymer. If you want a satin finish, use an isolation layer with your acrylic polymer.


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