Mixing Acrylic Paint with Resin: Tips for Stunning Results
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 9 min read


1. Selecting your Acrylic Paint

2. Choosing the Right Resin

3. Prep Your Workspace

4. Mixing Acrylic Paint with Resin

5. Tips for Avoiding Air Bubbles

6. Pouring your Resin Mixture

7. Letting your Resin Dry

8. Finishing Touches for your Resin Art

9. Safety Tips when Working with Resin

10. Inspiring Ideas for your Next Resin Project

If you've been in search of new ways to add a creative twist to your art pieces, you might have asked yourself, "Can you mix acrylic paint with resin?" The answer is yes, and the results can be absolutely stunning. This guide will walk you through the process, from selecting your acrylic paint to adding the final finishing touches to your resin art. Let's dive right in!

1. Selecting your Acrylic Paint

Choosing the right acrylic paint can make all the difference when it comes to mixing it with resin. Here are some factors you should consider:

Color Choice

The color of your paint will set the mood of your artwork. If you're going for a serene seascape, for example, you might opt for shades of blue and green. If you want something more fiery and dramatic, reds and oranges might be your go-to. The beauty of acrylics is that they come in a wide array of vibrant colors—your options are virtually limitless.

Quality of Paint

Not all acrylic paints are created equal. High-quality paint will mix better with resin, resulting in a smoother, more even finish. Brands like Liquitex and Golden Acrylics offer an excellent balance of quality and affordability. Remember, investing in good-quality paint can save you a lot of headache in the long run.

Paint Opacity

Acrylic paints come in different levels of opacity—from transparent to opaque. The level of opacity you choose will affect how light interacts with your finished piece. Transparent acrylics can create a beautiful stained glass effect when mixed with resin, while opaque acrylics can yield a more solid, vibrant result. The choice is up to you and what you envision for your artwork.

Choosing the right acrylic paint is the first step in creating stunning resin art. Now that you know what to look for, you're ready to start mixing acrylic paint with resin and create your own unique masterpiece.

2. Choosing the Right Resin

Now that you've selected your acrylic paint, the next step is to choose the right resin. There are two main types of resin you might consider: epoxy resin and polyester resin. Each has its own unique properties and uses.

Epoxy Resin

Epoxy resin is a favorite among artists for its low shrinkage, high gloss, and excellent color stability. It's also easier to work with than polyester resin and gives off fewer fumes. If you're a beginner, epoxy resin is a great place to start.

Polyester Resin

Polyester resin is more robust and costs less than epoxy resin, but it's also more difficult to work with. It tends to shrink more when it dries and can be quite smelly. However, if you're looking to create larger, more structural pieces—such as furniture—polyester resin might be the better choice.

When choosing your resin, remember that the quality is just as important as it was with your acrylic paint. Brands like ArtResin and ClearCast offer high-quality resins that are specifically designed for creating art.

With the right resin in hand, you're getting closer to being able to mix acrylic paint with resin. But before you start the fun part, there's one more thing you need to do—prepare your workspace.

3. Prep Your Workspace

Before you dive into the fun, creative part, it's vital to set up a clean and safe workspace. Here are a few steps to help you get started:

Clean Your Workspace

First things first, ensure your workspace is clean and free of dust. Any small particles can interfere with the smoothness of your resin and acrylic paint mixture. Use a damp cloth to clean the area thoroughly.

Cover Your Surface

Next, cover your work surface with a plastic sheet or drop cloth. Resin can be messy, and once it hardens, it's difficult to remove. This step will save you a lot of cleaning time later.

Gather Your Materials

Have all the materials you will need at hand. This includes your chosen acrylic paint, resin, mixing containers, stirring sticks, gloves, and a torch or heat gun for popping bubbles in the resin. Remember the saying - "A stitch in time saves nine"? It applies here too.

Now that you've prepped your workspace, you're ready to answer the question: "Can you mix acrylic paint with resin?" Let's find out.

4. Mixing Acrylic Paint with Resin

Now that you've set the stage, it's time to mix your acrylic paint with resin. Let's break down the process step by step:

Mix Your Resin

Start with mixing the resin according to the manufacturer's instructions. Usually, this involves combining a resin and a hardener in a precise ratio. It's crucial to get this right, as an incorrect ratio can result in a resin that doesn't set properly.

Add the Acrylic Paint

Once the resin is mixed, you can add your acrylic paint. As a general rule, you should add about 10% paint to the volume of resin. So, for every 100ml of resin, you'd add 10ml of paint. Stir well to ensure the paint is thoroughly mixed with the resin. Remember, the point here is not to change the color of the resin entirely but to give it a tint.

Check Consistency and Color

After mixing, check the consistency and color. It should be smooth, with no lumps or streaks. If the color isn't quite right, you can add more paint — but do so gradually. Remember, you can always add more, but you can't take it out.

And there you have it! You've successfully mixed acrylic paint with resin. But what's next? Read on to find out.

5. Tips for Avoiding Air Bubbles

After mixing your acrylic paint with resin, one common issue that you might run into is air bubbles. These pesky little problems can cause your resin art to lose its smooth appearance. But don't worry, there are ways to avoid this issue:

Stir Slowly

It may be tempting to stir your resin and paint mixture quickly, but doing so can introduce air bubbles into the mix. Instead, stir slowly and steadily, making sure to scrape the sides and bottom of your mixing container. This is one simple step that can help ensure a bubble-free result.

Let the Mixture Sit

After you've stirred your mixture, don't rush to use it right away. Instead, let it sit for a few minutes. This allows any air bubbles that have been trapped during the mixing process to rise to the surface and pop on their own.

Use a Heat Gun

If you still notice bubbles after letting your mixture sit, a heat gun can be your best friend. A quick pass over the surface with a heat gun can help pop any remaining bubbles. Just be sure not to hold the heat too close or for too long, as this can cause the resin to cure prematurely.

With these tips in mind, you're well on your way to getting perfect, bubble-free results when mixing acrylic paint with resin. But what happens when it's time to pour? Stick around to find out.

6. Pouring your Resin Mixture

So, you've mixed your acrylic paint with resin, and you've made sure there are no air bubbles. Now comes the fun part — pouring your mixture onto your canvas or mold. Here are some tips to ensure a successful pour:

Pour Slowly

Just as with stirring, pouring your resin mixture slowly can help prevent the formation of air bubbles. Patience is key here. Don't rush the process, and you'll be rewarded with a smooth, bubble-free finish.

Layer Your Pours

If you're using multiple colors in your artwork, consider layering your pours rather than pouring all your colors at once. This can give your piece more depth and help prevent the colors from blending together too much.

Tilt to Spread

Instead of trying to pour your resin mixture over the entire surface of your canvas or mold, pour in the center and then tilt your workspace to spread the resin. This technique can give you more control over the coverage and also help create interesting patterns in your piece.

With these tips in mind, pouring your resin should be a fun and stress-free experience. But remember, after the pour is done, it's not time to kick back just yet. There's still the drying process to consider.

7. Letting your Resin Dry

Now that you've poured your acrylic and resin mixture onto your canvas or mold, it's time to let it dry. This part might seem simple, but there are a few things you should keep in mind to ensure the best results.

Provide Ample Drying Time

Resin isn't like regular paint; it needs a good deal of time to fully harden. In general, you should allow at least 24 hours for your resin to dry. However, some brands may require up to 72 hours. Check the instructions on your resin package to be sure.

Keep it Dust Free

While your resin is drying, it's still susceptible to dust and other airborne particles. To keep your artwork as clean as possible, consider covering it with a large box or a dust cover. Just make sure whatever you use doesn't touch the resin surface.

Avoid Touching or Moving

It can be tempting to touch your artwork to see if it's dry, but resist the urge. Touching the resin before it's fully dried can leave fingerprints or smudges. Also, try to avoid moving your artwork until it's completely hardened to prevent any accidental shifts or distortion in the design.

Once your resin is fully dry, you're almost at the finish line. But before you start celebrating, there are still some finishing touches to consider.

8. Finishing Touches for your Resin Art

After your resin has fully cured, it's time to add those final touches that can really make your artwork pop. From sanding edges to adding a glossy top coat, these small steps can make a big difference in your final product.

Sanding Edges

If you've poured your resin onto a canvas or other flat surface, you might find that the edges are a bit rough or uneven. You can smooth these out using a bit of sandpaper. But remember to always sand in a well-ventilated area and wear a mask to avoid inhaling any resin dust.

Adding a Top Coat

For a truly polished look, consider adding a top coat to your resin art. This can add a beautiful shine to your piece and make the colors of your acrylic paint really stand out. Plus, it provides an extra layer of protection for your artwork.

Buffing your Resin Art

Buffing your resin art with a soft cloth can give it a brilliant shine and smooth finish. This step isn't always necessary, but it can add that extra bit of professionalism to your work. Just remember to be gentle; you don't want to scratch the surface!

With your final touches complete, your resin art is ready to display. But before you go, let's discuss a few safety tips to remember when working with resin.

9. Safety Tips when Working with Resin

Before we jump into the next creative project, let's talk safety. Remember that while mixing acrylic paint with resin can lead to stunning results, it's important to take precautions to protect yourself and your workspace.

Wear Protective Gear

When you're working with resin, always wear protective gear. This includes gloves to protect your skin from any potential irritations and a mask to prevent inhaling any harmful fumes. Safety glasses are also a good idea, especially when sanding or buffing your resin art.

Ensure Good Ventilation

Resin can release fumes that are not only unpleasant to smell but can also be harmful if inhaled. Make sure your workspace is well ventilated - open windows or doors, use fans, or work outside if weather permits.

Handle With Care

Remember, liquid resin is sticky and can be tricky to handle. It's best to move slowly and deliberately to avoid spills. And if you do happen to spill some? Don't panic - just clean it up promptly with some rubbing alcohol and a paper towel.

With these safety measures in place, you can confidently continue exploring the exciting world of resin art. Now, let's spark some inspiration for your next project!

10. Inspiring Ideas for Your Next Resin Project

Now that you've mastered the basics of mixing acrylic paint with resin, you might be asking, "What's next?" Well, let's get those creative juices flowing with a few project ideas that will allow you to showcase your newfound skills.

Resin Jewelry

Why not wear your art? Mixing acrylic paint with resin can create beautiful, unique pieces of jewelry. From pendants to earrings, the possibilities are endless. Picture a pair of drop earrings with swirls of your favorite colors - truly a one-of-a-kind accessory!

Resin Coasters

Looking for a functional art project? Try making resin coasters. These can be a great addition to your coffee table, and they make excellent gifts. Imagine the delight of your friends when they place their drinks on these miniature works of art.

Resin Wall Art

Why not go big with a piece of resin wall art? From abstract designs to detailed landscapes, the sky is the limit when it comes to what you can create. Plus, your guests will be amazed when you tell them, "Yes, I did mix the acrylic paint with resin myself for that piece."

No matter what project you choose, remember that the joy is in the journey. Each piece you create is a chance to learn and grow as an artist. So go ahead, ask yourself: "Can I mix acrylic paint with resin?" The answer is a resounding yes, and the results can be truly spectacular.

If you're interested in taking your acrylic painting techniques to the next level, especially when it comes to mixing acrylic paint with resin, don't miss the workshop 'Improve Your Acrylic Painting Skills' by Rachel Christopoulos. This workshop will provide you with valuable tips and techniques to enhance your skills and achieve stunning results in your acrylic and resin artwork.