Can I Put All Types Of Clear Coats Over Acrylic Paint?

When it comes to arts and crafts acrylic paint is on the priority list of almost everyone. After all, it’s affordable, easy to apply, and water-resistant. But what happens when It gets exposed to water or UV rays?

Can I Use Clear Coat On Acrylic Paint? Although acrylic is permanent It may fade over the years. This is when a clear coat comes into play. There are several clear coats for protecting the paint from wearing off. You can put a clear coat over acrylic paint to make it last longer. A clear coat makes the acrylic paint more attractive with your desired finish. 

I explained that well below. So, keep reading to learn how you can do so as well.

Can You Put Clear Coats Over Acrylic Paint?

Do You Need A Clear Coat For Acrylic Paints?

When you put a clear coat over acrylic paint you get some benefits. For example, it adds extra shine and a glossy finish to your colors. Clear coats are also necessary for acrylic pour painting when you want it to last longer. 

This means that the clear coat will protect acrylic paints for years. Plus, it’s easy to get rid of dirt off your acrylic painting. 

Do you want to protect your acrylic colors from water splash or UV rays of the sun? No worries, clear coats will do that for you.

So, does your acrylic paint need a clear coat? Well, if you don’t want the paint to fade, then why not? 

What Type Of Clear Top Coat You Can Apply Over Acrylic Paint?

Are you wondering what clear coat to use over your acrylic painting? There are different types of clear coats of acrylic paint. Now, you need to understand which protective clear coat to go over acrylic paint.

Below I will now explain different kinds of clear coats so that you can find the one you need. 

#1 The Gloss Type

If you want to make your acrylic painting shiny and glossy, you need to get the gloss type of clear coat. Not only will it give the painting a glossy finish, but also make the colors pop. A glossy coating gets the most attention under bright lights.

But, if you are not fond of shiny reflections on paintings, avoid glossy type clear coats. 

Sargent Art Acrylic Gloss and Varnish : (Best Gloss Clear Top Coat For Acrylic Paint)

Sargent Art Acrylic Gloss and Varnish is an affordable clear coat. It gives a gloss finish. If you are looking for a non-toxic, acid-free, ap certified coat you may like this one. 

What I really like about this product is that It does not have a strong odor other than a little glue-like smell. It is permanent and waterproof.  Also, It dries very quickly.  I have found some users saying that It may leave a foggy effect. Another user says waiting for at least 20 minutes (for letting it dry) helps to avoid such fog. 

#2 The Matte Type

It is the opposite of the gloss type. If you’re looking for a simple, matte finish this is the type you should use. It doesn’t make the painting look dull. You can use soft or subtle light near the painting after the coating is dry.

However, this type of coating may turn the dark colors darker after it dries. 

#3 The Satin Type

A satin type of clear coat is neither matte nor shiny. Rather it is a perfect blend of both of these types. For some colors, the matte finish may look a bit dull.

So, if you are looking for a little gloss but not too much of it, this can be a great option. I personally love satin clear coating over acrylic paint. 

Liquitex Professional Satin Varnish : (Best Satin Type Clear Top Coat For Acrylic Paint)

Liquitex Professional Satin Varnish is a lightweight clear satin coat. It is non-toxic, non-yellowing, and permanent.

I love how It enhances the colors without altering their temperature. It’s a pretty great deal for exterior and interior use. Some users say applying It with a silicon brush helps to avoid the visibility of brush stroke. You can try this method. 

#4 Water-Based

A water-based coat for acrylic paint is user-friendly. Especially if you are doing it for a small project. Initially, it is wet but it dries real quick. It doesn’t smell either; which makes it handier for painting at home. You can use a water-based polymer or polyurethane coat.

I don’t recommend using this type of coat for bigger paintings. Because it will dry fast before you can finish applying on a portion of the painting. 

#5 Solvent-Based/Mineral Spirit Acrylic

A solvent-based coat prevents your painting from discoloring or fading. It’s a time saver as it dries quicker. It makes the paint look more clear and gives a hard finish.

But you need to use mineral spirits with it for thinning and cleaning up. Although it dries fast, you better wait till a few hours to move the painting or refrain from touching it.

Krylon Crystal Clear : (Best Solvent-Based/Mineral Spirit Acrylic Clear Topcoat For Acrylic Paint)

Krylon Crystal Clear comes in a spray can. It provides a smudge-proof, permanent, non-yellowing glossy finish over acrylic. 

I prefer using this spray coat. Because you can use it on several surfaces. For example, Wood,  Metal, Plastic, Paper Mache, Glass, Plaster, Ceramic, Dried Silk Flowers, Paper, Vinyl Stickers. There is another interesting fact I have come across. It’s that some users recommend this for coating cheap jewelry. You can even use this on fabric as It does not stain.

#6 Resin

You can use artist-grade epoxy resin as a clear coat for your acrylic paintings. The resin creates a very glossy, clear, and thick layer above the painting. All you need to do is mix the resin proportionately. Now, this is real fun as well as a tricky task to do. If you’re not familiar with the procedure of using resin, it may be a little hard for you. It may get kind of messy too.

Moreover, it may not be appropriate for your painting as it is very glossy. Other than that, the resin can be a good option for coating. 

#7 Isolation Coat

The isolation coat is a bit different from the others I have mentioned earlier. This type of coat is for creating a barrier between the paint and the coat. If you are using a removable coat over your painting you need to put an isolation coat first. Thus, you can later remove the coat without even damaging the actual paint.

Professional artists use isolation coat which ensures lifetime protection for their paintings. But you can skip this step if you want to. 

Read More: Can I Use Any Type Of Mod Podge On Acrylic Paint?

How Long Should You Wait To Clear Coat Acrylic Paint?

Usually, acrylic paint doesn’t take much time to dry on the surface. Yet, it depends on some factors for acrylic paint to dry. If you have applied a thicker layer of painting it will take a longer time to dry than usual.

Humidity, temperature, and ventilation are some other important factors. Sometimes your acrylic painting may seem it has dried but it may not have dried thoroughly. So it will need time to dry before putting the coat.

You can wait at least one to six weeks to let your acrylic paint dry. By this time your panting will be ready to have a clear coat. 

How To Clear Coat Acrylic Paint?

Using a clear coat over acrylic paintings is essential. A clear coat helps to protect your painting from water, dust, and UV rays. It also prevents the paint from discoloring and preserves for years. There are plenty of options to choose from to clear coat over acrylic. You can choose any of the types of coats for your painting based on your need. 

Here is a beginner’s guide on how to clear coat acrylic paint. 

#1 Sanding Before Clear Coat

If the painting surface is wood, metal, or primer gesso on canvas prepare it by sanding. This step is necessary to avoid unwanted textures on the painting. You can use good sandpaper for this purpose. Don’t forget to add a little bit of water to the surface before that. 

#2 Prepare Surface

The surface of your painting may not always need sanding. But you should definitely prepare the surface before a clear coating. Clean the surface and make sure it properly dries. Add primer if you need to.

#3 Choose Brush or Spray

The next stage is to decide whether you want a water-based or spray coat. Then choose a good quality brush or spray for clear coating acrylic paint. Make sure the brush is flat and clean if you choose a brush.

#4 Apply Isolation Coat

An isolation coat will create a barrier between paint and a clear coat. It is light and transparent and helps in preventing a mix-up of colors. You have to apply it before applying the clear coat. But it is not a mandatory step. 

#5 Apply The Clear Coat

Start by applying the clear coat side by side. Avoid overlapping while using a brush. If you’re using a spray, lay down the painting surface and place newspaper or plastic underneath. 2-3 layers of spray is a good amount. 

#6 Let It Dry

When you’re done applying the coat, leave it untouched. Your painting is not yet ready for touching or moving to some other place. Though most of the clear coats dry quickly you may need to be cautious. See the instructions on the label and wait for 20-60 minutes for letting it dry

Will Acrylic Paint Last On Top Of Clear Coat?

Acrylic paint becomes permanent when it dries. But it’s not always waterproof. For making acrylic paintings last longer you will have to use a clear coat over. A clear coat is basically water/solvent-based paint or resin with a matte or shiny finish. The purpose of using such a coat is to protect the paint. if you want to add some extra layer of acrylic over the clear coat; you will need to sand off the coat first.

Otherwise applying paint over the coat directly will be much more difficult. Then you can seal it with a clear coat. 

Will Acrylic Paint Stick To Clear Coat?

Clear coats can make any paint durable. Acrylic paint is popular for being affordable and permanent. A good quality topcoat is enough for the most protection of acrylic paints. Yet, over the years even a good quality clear coat may fade.

It will be difficult to apply acrylic paint over the clear coat. You can sand off the earlier applied clear coat over the panting. You can also wash off the coat if it is a washable one. Then apply the acrylic paint. Wait for the paint to dry completely. Finish it off by using a protective clear coat.  

Can I Put Clear Coat For Acrylic Paint On Plastic?

Acrylic paint can be easily applied on any surface like wood, paper, glass, fabric. The fun fact is you can actually paint acrylic on plastics too. Although acrylics last longer on any surface it is not the case with plastics. Before using acrylic on plastics you must prepare the surface with utmost care. It may take longer than usual to dry if painted on plastic. To seal the acrylic on plastic use a good quality clear coat over it. Yet, it will eventually come off despite using the best primer and clear coat. 

Related Reading: What Kind Of Acrylic Paint Do You Use On Plastic?

Can You Put Clear Coat Over Acrylic Painted Wood?

Yes, you can. Wood is a wonderful surface for acrylic painting. Most of the woods are heat-sealed and treated. So before applying acrylic on wood, make sure to prepare it properly. You can prepare the wood by cleaning and sanding. After you’re done with your painting on wood, let the paint sit and dry. When the paint will dry completely you can use a clear coat of your choice to put over the paint. A clear matte coat will look very elegant on acrylic painted wood or furniture. 

Can You Put Clear Coat For Acrylic Paint On Outdoor?

Are you willing to use acrylic paint outdoors? Acrylic painting is great for any kind of surface. It is usually water-resistant but not water-proof. Besides, any paint will eventually fade one day. This is why you need to put a good quality clear coat over acrylic paint for exterior use. Make sure the surface of the paint is completely dry before putting on the coat. Get a weather-resistant coat If your paint is about to get exposed to direct sunlight and rain. A clear coat will also make your paint scratch-resistant for the exterior. 

Aleene’s Spray Gloss Finish : (Best Clear Coat For Outdoor Acrylic Paint)

Aleene’s Spray Gloss Finish. You can use it for any indoor or outdoor project. It’s free of CFCs and leaves a durable gloss finish. 

I think this is a good clear coat If you want something that dries really fast and gives a smooth finish. I have seen some people finding the odor of this coat to be strong. You can spray on your project outside and use a face mask. I believe It will help you to avoid odor. 

Find More: What Are The Best Outdoor Acrylic Paints?

Can You Put Clear Coat For Acrylic Paint On Canvas?

Acrylic paint brings out the best result on canvas. Whether you want to put a clear coat over acrylic canvas painting or not is totally your wish. You can use any kind of clear coating over acrylic paint on canvas. It depends on what outcome you are desiring. Just remember to let the paint dry completely before you apply the coat. 

Can You Put Clear Coat For Acrylic Paint On Ceramic?

You can paint your decorative ceramic pieces with acrylic paint. Acrylic sticks better on unglazed ceramics. If you want to paint unglazed ceramics with acrylic make sure to put a clear coating over to seal it. This will make the painted ceramics look more elegant and the paint will stay longer. Water-based clear coats work best on acrylic painted ceramics. Yet, the paint may get rub-off over the years. Keep the painted ceramics in a safe place and recoat after several years if needed. Do not use acrylic paints on ceramics that you may use to serve food. 

Can You Put a Clear Coat For Acrylic Paint On Metal?

Acrylic paint is popular for its versatile use over different surfaces. And this includes metal in the list. You can definitely use acrylic paint on metal. But you will have to prepare the metal before applying the paint. The paint may last years for its inherent durability. But it’s better to use a clear coat over acrylic paint. The right type of clear coat will keep your acrylic painted metal safe from wearing off.

Can You Put Clear Coat Over Acrylic Paint On Wall?

Painting on a wall with acrylic is a great fun project to do. Acrylic paint is affordable and easy to use. It is genuinely durable and looks more vibrant on a wall. Although acrylic is water-resistant it’s better to use a clear coat over the paint. You can use a clear coat to give it a matte or glossy finish and make it more durable. 

Can You Spray Clear Coat Over Acrylic Paint?

You can use spray clear coat over acrylic paint. Spray coats are particularly famous for consuming less time and easy application. This type of clear coat is more used on canvas, wood, and metal. A spray coat will protect the painting like the other coats. But make sure you have a good ventilation system because these sprays are flammable. 

Can You Put Clear Coat On Acrylic Automotive Paint?

Yes, you can. There are different types of acrylic car paints. These are acrylic enamel, acrylic lacquer, and acrylic urethane. Acrylic urethane is a newer version of auto body paint. It is a mixer of acrylic enamel and lacquer. Acrylic paint brings out a beautiful color for your car. You do need to be cautious while applying the paints as these are toxic. Although these colors last longer you have to seal them off. You must apply a clear coat over the acrylic body paint of your car.

Read More: Can You Put A Clear Coat Over Acrylic Enamel Paint?

Over To You

In this article, I have tried to find an answer to your query about “Can You Put Clear Coat Over Acrylic Paint?”. I hope this helps you to understand what you are looking for.

Did you find this article helpful? Is there anything else of acrylic paint that you want to know about? You can comment down below and let me know.

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