Will Acrylic Paint Stick to Spray Paint?

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When creating art, it’s important to know which paints can go together, otherwise you’re putting your entire art piece at risk of being ruined. Acrylic paint is a very adaptable paint, which is why so many people enjoy using it on any variety of things they create. While acrylic paint and spray paint are both very popular options, do they work together?

Even though acrylic paint is water-based and spray paint is not, they can in fact work together, as long as it is done correctly

Is Acrylic Paint going to Stick on Spray Paint?

Acrylic paint can stick to spray paint under the right circumstances. It is important to preface by saying that acrylic over spray paint may not be the route you should take depending on the end result.

After reading through the provided information, you will know what the right decision is in reference to what results you should expect.

The Relationship Between Acrylic Paint and Spray Paint:

Its good news that acrylic paint sticks to paints containing solvents. We know water-based and oil-based solvents. There’s a downside of acrylic: it can be difficult to adhere to nonwater-based paints. If you paint acrylic over an oil base, the most common problem you will see is lifting, cracking, or peeling.

Spray paint overall is more than likely oil-based, so unless you go to seek out water-based spray paint (which does exist but is harder to find,) then you’re going to want to make sure that you know how to properly get the acrylic to adhere to the surface.

How to Paint over Spray Paint?

Acrylic paint will have a harder time adhering to glossy paint, even if you take the proper steps.

1. Sand the spray paint.

The goal isn’t to remove the spray paint while sanding, otherwise, you’re going to notice patchy sections which may be visible when applying the acrylic; the goal is to sand down the glossy appearance.

2. Clean your surface

Once you sand away the glossy feel/look of spray paint, you need to clean it off so there isn’t any dirt or dust build-up. Some people use TSP wash, but this can damage painted wood so a good alternative may be borax. If you prefer a wash that you know and trust, feel free to use it, as the options given are just recommendations.

3. Apply Primer

An extremely important step when painting acrylic over oil-based paint is to apply your primer. For this step, many people have depended on preference for whether or not they use an oil-based primer or a water-based primer. Most popular among us is the Gesso water-based.

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NOTE:  The point of the primer is to allow the acrylic paint to stick better. If you skip this step, you’re raising the risk that your acrylic paint will lift or chip.

4. paint your surface with acrylic paint

You need to apply at least two layers of acrylic paint. If you apply one layer, you may see that there isn’t an even application. This can result in a patchy appearance, uneven areas, or lifting in some areas that may have been avoidable.

NOTE: even though the acrylic paint will adhere to flat spray paint better, don’t skip the sanding and priming just because it is a flat paint. No matter what, sanding and priming will help you get the best acrylic application possible. 

It’s also important to remember that acrylic paint can have a harder time with oil-based paints, so don’t be disappointed if it maybe doesn’t turn out exactly as you wanted.

5. Seal your paint

To achieve the best possible results, seal your acrylic after applying it to the spray paint. This doesn’t just make sure that your paint stays intact, it protects it from damage, dust, and debris.

What Can You Use Acrylic On?

As previously stated, acrylic paint is versatile which is why so many people enjoy using it. You can use it on almost any surface with the proper preparation, examples being: wood, ceramic, metal, glass, and plastic. You can also mix it with a variety of different paints, you just have to make sure you follow it with the right procedures.

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