Can You Mix Acrylic Paint With Epoxy Resin? (Easy DIY Guide)

You might be sealing a floor, or a wall, or maybe a piece of wood in your place. You might find yourself wondering, can I mix acrylic paint with my plain epoxy resin to add some color?  

The short answer is yes, but you’re lucky you found this guide to steer you in the right direction. Here, you’ll learn how to safely mix acrylic paint in epoxy resin to color it. But first, let’s firstly take a look at what acrylic paint and epoxy resin are. 

Many construction workers and home DIYers will know of these liquid resins. They are synthetic adhesives with different chemical hardeners. Many resins will have their own uses and are unique in hardness, viscosity, and curing process.

In our experience, it's important to note that the lower the epoxy resin’s viscosity, the longer it takes to dry. Epoxy resins with higher viscosity levels are more suited to laminating and casting projects. 

An advantage of using epoxy resin on your projects is that it offers ultraviolet resistance; it's shatter-proof. It has a low susceptibility to weather elements and abrasion. 

Bottles of Paint with Epoxy Resin

What Are Acrylic Paints? 

Acrylic paint is made of pigments soaked in an acrylic polymer emulsion. They are water-soluble and fast-drying. They offer the advantage of being water-resistant when dry, and stains can be washed off easily with water and soap. 

Acrylic paints are also non-flammable, highly resistant to cracks, and give off little odor, so they are perfect for use in playrooms or on children's furniture.  

The major advantage of acrylic paint is its versatility and compatibility with different compounds when it comes into contact with other mixtures. This means it can be safe to mix acrylic paint with an epoxy resin, as long as it’s done correctly.  

Can You Mix Acrylic Paint Together With Epoxy Resin?

As we mentioned, the short answer is yes.

As acrylic paints have a wide variety of colors, including neon, glitter, and glow in the dark, it’s no surprise that painters want to keep their surfaces safer for longer with a resin.

But there are some factors you need to take into consideration.  

When mixing acrylic paint with epoxy resin, it's essential to pay attention to the ratio of each component. This is important so that you don't mess with the flow of the resin.

The recommended ratio is 1:10 (1 part of acrylic paint to 10 parts of epoxy resin). You’ll also need to consider the surfaces you intend to paint. 

What type of surface can be painted with epoxy resin mixed with acrylic paint? 

Canvas 

Use a spray bottle to mist water over your canvas. Allow it to dry completely. Be sure to use a wooden frame canvas, or else your artwork would twist because it isn't secured with the frame. 

Wood 

Acrylic paints and epoxy resins can be applied to painted wood. It’s best paired with resins as water-based paints are fast-drying, so you can apply a high quality epoxy resin for wood after about 24 hours of drying time. 

Tiles 

Painted tiles can be a fun and easy way to spruce up a room. You can use a glazed or unglazed tile with acrylic paint and epoxy resin. Both will work well.  

Vinyl Records 

Prime and paint over your old vinyl records, or you can also find inexpensive used vinyl records at a local Goodwill store. Just be sure to tape the hole in the center to prevent the epoxy resin from dripping through to the other side. 

Now that you know the surfaces to paint, here are some other questions you may have on how much acrylic paint to mix with resin and what's the best way on each surface. 

How To Mix Acrylic Paint With Epoxy Resin

As we’ve stated above, it’s essential to mix your liquid or fluid acrylic paint with your epoxy resin correctly. A good rule of thumb is using a ratio of 1:10 (1 part of acrylic paint to 10 parts of epoxy resin).

In addition, we advise staying within a 6% colorant volume to the total volume of the epoxy resins. If you go above this ratio/percentage, you'll have a chance that the liquid will become clumpy, and its pouring capacity will be affected if there is too much paint.  

If you want consistency in your paint, prepare the mixture by stirring it with a plastic spoon or popsicle stick.

Rotate in a 360-degree manner until you get a smooth consistency. As for the color, the surface material should be considered to avoid over saturation. This could ruin the project for you. 

It’s also important to note that adding acrylic paint with epoxy resin can change the color, and it will fade the resin’s gloss. It is generally assumed the glossiness of resin is good as a sealer, but expect this as a possible result of mixing the two.  


What Happens To Epoxy Resins If You Don’t Mix Acrylic Paint Correctly?

Paints and acrylics are typically not recommended to be mixed with epoxy resins. Acrylic-based pigments, water-based pigments, and even some oil-based pigments were not created to be mixed with any epoxy resin.

If done incorrectly, clumps can form and make a weird film on your final piece of art or floorwork. It's also important for the surface to receive proper handling. 

Will Epoxy Resin Still Stick To A Surface If Acrylic Paint Is Added To It?

If you are painting over a surface with epoxy resin on it, it's best to use latex paint. These two together do an adequate job of protecting a surface or floor. It's perfectly fine to mix an acrylic color with an epoxy resin and then paint. However, it should be done correctly.  

What Else Can I Mix With Epoxy Resins?

So, we know that acrylic paints can mix with epoxy resins with the right ratios and equipment, but what are the alternatives to acrylic paint when coloring epoxy resins?

Typically any oil paints won’t blend too well with resins. The mixture will result in being messy and, quite frankly, not worth the mess cleaning. However, there are three alternatives you can try.  

  • Alcohol Ink
    We all know alcohol ink is extremely flammable, and once it comes into contact with an epoxy resin, the whole mixture becomes dangerous. It's important to consider this when doing your next project, as the mix cannot be close to flammable torches or light sources.

    It's also not the best option when working with kids. If this is a project for an adult or professional, mixing alcohol inks with epoxy resin offers calming effects such as branch and squiggles petrification, as well as inking tendrils.  
  • Resin Tint
    Unlike alcohol inks and many other paint options that can be mixed with epoxy resins, resin tints must be specifically bought for changing the color of an epoxy resin. It works as a binder and should not be used alone.

    As epoxy resin is non-flammable to start with, these resin tints are also non-flammable and non-toxic. You don't have to worry about taking away the epoxy resin's glossiness. Instead, these colorful tints can enhance the finished gloss.   
  • Airbrush Paint
    Whether you want your epoxy resin to be red, green, purple, or black, there’s an airbrush paint or a paint brand that can provide this service.

    Just like acrylic paints, they pack a thin viscosity rating, and they’re safe to use around children’s rooms or on their projects. You should use the same 1:10 ratio as acrylic paints when using airbrush paint.  
Stone Coat Epoxy Resin Table

Acrylic Paint & Epoxy Resin FAQs 

Can you mix nail polish with epoxy resin? 

We don't recommend this method as a valid or effective way to color resin. Some artists use epoxy resin to seal a small surface covered in nail polish, and it does work. However, mixing both has not gone well for several DIYers. 


Can you put epoxy over a painted surface? 

Absolutely! As we mentioned previously, we don't recommend putting an epoxy resin over a latex-based paint (it can cause a wrinkling effect).


Instead, we recommend using epoxy resin over painted surfaces with water-based paints. They tend to be the best and easiest as they are fast-drying. 


Will spray paint stick to resin? 

If the spray paint you are using is acrylic-based, you can stick resin on top. Bear in mind that the surface will have to be sanded and primed first, but an epoxy resin would work as a sealer and can protect spray-painted surfaces.  


Conclusion

We know now mixing acrylic paint and epoxy resins work! But the ratio is important, and the glossiness of the resin will be affected. Alternatively, you can use a resin tint to maintain glossiness and still get a good payoff in color. With all of this information, the choice is up to you.