Acrylic Vs. Enamel: Which Paint Is Right For My Craft?

Crafting is a popular hobby among Americans today. Having the ability to customize gifts or home decor items can be exciting, but the process can be a little intimidating for beginners. If you are just getting started with crafting, then you will need to take the time to learn how to select the right paint for your project.

Here are some things to consider when determining whether acrylic or enamel paint is the right choice for you.

1. How much time do you have to let your craft dry?

The amount of time you have available for the paint on your craft to dry completely can be a determining factor when it comes to deciding between acrylic and enamel paints. Acrylic paint generally dries in a matter of minutes after it is applied to your craft, making it the perfect choice for any last-minute items that you might need to paint.

Enamel paint takes longer to dry (anywhere from one hour to one day), so it should be reserved for use only if you have enough time to allow for proper drying.

2. How much coverage are you looking for?

Some crafts look better with a more transparent paint application. If you want to add a hint of color without covering your craft in a coat of opaque paint, then acrylic paints are your best bet. These paints are water-based, and the color can be diluted to create a range of finishes for your craft.

If, on the other hand, you want a more dense coverage, then going with an oil-based enamel paint will give you the finish you are looking for to complete your craft.

3. What type of material are you working with?

To select the perfect paint for your craft, it's important to take the raw materials you will be working with into consideration. Since acrylic paints are more water soluble, they work best on porous mediums like paper, foam, or soft woods.

Enamel paints are more permanent, so they are suited for use on hard wood furnishings, glass or ceramics. Choosing the right paint for your materials is important when it comes to ensuring the quality of your finished craft.

Knowing when to select enamel paint, and when acrylic paint is better suited for your project, can help you improve the quality of your finished crafts. Keeping both types of paint on hand at all times will ensure that you are prepared to tackle any craft project in the future.