Acrylic paint is one of the most used types of paint, and many of the famous paintings have been made using acrylics. Most of these paintings are on canvas. But did you know that you can use acrylic paint on glass as well?
Using acrylic glass paint is a fun way to decorate your vases, mason jars, windows, mirrors, and mugs.
In this article you will learn everything you need to start painting on glass yourself.
Will acrylic paint stick to glass?
So let’s start with the most important question right away: can you use acrylic paint on glass?
The answer is yes. But you can’t use every type of acrylics paint for glass painting.
Besides using the right paint, you will also have to prepare the glass. For the acrylic paint to stick, the glass needs to be completely clean of any dust or oil stains. The easiest way to clean it is by using some rubbing alcohol.
Besides paint some art markers can also be used on glass. Especially the Posca markers are great for writing on glass because their ink is very similar to acrylic paint. For more information, read our Uni Posca Marker review.
Supplies you need
Before you can get started painting on glass with acrylic paint you will need to get the right supplies. Here are the art supplies you will need:
Acrylic glass paint – specialized acrylic paint should be used when painting on glass. If you are using some good quality paint it will stick to the glass much better and won’t need to be heated to set. You can either buy permanent or washable paints but try to stay away from the cheap options since they don’t adhere very well. Some good paint to start with is the set by FolkArt (check here on Amazon).
Paintbrushes – when it comes to paintbrushes you can go as fancy as you want. But if you are just starting out any beginner set with a variety of differently sized and shaped brushes will do, such as the kit offerd by ATool (check here on Amazon).
Glass for painting – you can pretty much use anything made out of glass such as windows, empty bottles, plates, cups, etc. You probably have something at home that you can use.
Rubbing alcohol – you will need this to clean and prepare the glass before painting.
Besides the essentials you might want to use some extra items to make the painting easier on yourself such as:
- Palette – to squeeze and mix your paints
- Stencils and patterns – to easily paint the shapes you want
- Paint markers – to add details to your painting
- Sealant – if the acrylic paint doesn’t adhere to the glass well
How to use acrylic paint on glass
- For the paint to stick to the glass well you need to make sure that there is no dust of oil on the surface. Use the rubbing alcohol and a paper towel to clean the glass. Make sure not to leave new oil by touching the glass with your bare hands. Some latex gloves can be useful.
- Depending on which paint you are using you might have to apply a sealant to the glass. Read the instruction that come with the paint you bought. These sealants need to dry for a long time so it’s best to do it the day before.
- If you are painting on a glass that you will use for drinking afterwards, use some masking tape to cover the rim. Since some paints might be slightly toxic you don’t want to touch it directly with you mouth.
- Start painting on glass with acrylics using the brushes, stencils, or palettes to get the pattern you want. If you want to make a paint a large layer with the same color you can use a sponge as well. You can add some extra water if the paint is water-based to thin out the paint a little.
- If any air bubbles appear in the paint you want to pop them with something sharp like a toothpick.
- Use the rubbing alcohol to correct small mistakes or start over completely.
- Depending on which paint you are using, the paint might either dry by itself or require an additional baking step. Check the paint instructions for the exact temperature and time. Normally this will be around 30 minutes at 300 degree Fahrenheit.
Simple tips to improve your results
As mentioned above, the most important thing when painting acrylics on glass is to use the right paint. But besides that, there are a few details you can pay attention to if you want to get the most out of your paint.
- If you want your colors to really pop out, you can use the white paint to create a base layer and then paint over it with a new color.
- Let the paint dry for an adequate amount of time between painting a second or even third layer.
- Don’t microwave acrylic paint on glass, since it will damage the paint.
- Don’t use or wash the glass for 2~3 days after drying it.
- The colors might look a bit different when they are dried compared to how they look in the bottle. Try out every color on some old glassware once so you know what to expect.