Buying Guide: Acrylic Paint

Buying Guide: Acrylic Paint

Crafting Time:
  • Varies
Skill Level:
  • Beginner
Project Courtesy of: Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores
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Additional Information



What You Need to Know About Acrylic Paint

Craft acrylics are creamy when wet and dry quickly to a water-resistant surface.Available in a wide range of colors they are usually used without mixing or thinning. Liquid acrylics dry to a smooth, even surface that show few brush marks. These paints are ideal for covering a wide variety of porous surfaces and can even be mixed with other mediums to enhance a project or technique. This non-toxic paint can be cleaned up with soap and water while wet.

Questions to consider before purchasing anything:
What surface will I be painting on?
What type of finish am I going for?
Is this something that I need to test painting first, or have I painted it before?
What will this project be used for. 

All Purpose Acrylic is fast drying highly pigmented and concentrated paint.

  • It has excellent coverage and is also good for blending and mixing.
  • Water-based paint is designed to be used on wood, plaster, terra cotta, paper,chipboard, paper mache & many more surfaces.
  • Acrylic paint becomes water resistant when completely dry.

Chalk Paint is an acrylic that can be used on furniture, metals and walls.

  • This is a home decor based paint that allows refinishing of furniture with ease. It uses sealants to keep it looking distressed or polished longer.
  • Chalkboard paint or chalk paint allows you to create a surface that can use chalk to write on and even erase and reuse over and over.

Enamels are perfect for painting on glass, ceramics, and tin.

  • These dry quickly and after being cured can be used in the dishwasher for easy care.

Mediums are used to take a plain acrylic paint color and add a special decorative effect and/or texture.

  • Different mediums can be used with all acrylic paints and on any surface type depending on the medium being used.
  • Can be used on fabrics, furniture, canvas, wood, metals, plastics, and more.
  • Glazing Medium adds a clear, semi-gloss finish to paint for furniture and hard craft surfaces.
  • Fabric painting medium creates a washable, permanent paint for fabrics. Improves the bond to fabric and help prevents cracking, peeling and fading.
  • Fabric painting medium creates a washable, permanent paint for fabrics. Improves the bond to fabric and help prevents cracking, peeling and fading.
  • Paint adhesion medium helps improve acrylic paint adhesion on slick surfaces like plastics, metals, and more.
  • Staining/Antiquing mediums make wood stains of any color by mixing with acrylic paint and also, used to help antique pre-painted projects.

Outdoor Paint is waterproof and has excellent adhesion to exterior surfaces. 

  • This paint doesn’t need a sealer and has a long lasting finish.
  • Some of the surfaces to use on are concrete, wood, and terra cotta.

Primers, Sealers & Varnishes:

  • Primers help condition most wood surfaces and improve the acrylic paint adhesion.
  • Sealers are non-toxic and designed to adhere to all surfaces for indoor and outdoor use. 
    • All sealers dry clear.
      • Some come in aerosol cans with special features as UV protection.
      • Some available in satin, matte (dull), and glossy (shiny) finishes.
  • Varnishes Form a touch, flexible clear finish that dries quickly and cleans up with just soap and water.