Can Acrylic Paint Be Used On Wood

Can Acrylic Paint Be Used on Wood?


Many are wondering if the acrylic paint can be used on wood. Acrylic paints are great for experimenting for newbie artists and children trying to learn to engage with wood art. An acrylic paint painted on a wood surface often displays a professional-looking result.

In fact, you can use acrylic paint to decorate panels and drawers for customizing creations which are more intricate and decorative than wood stains.

Can Acrylic Paint Be Used on Wood?

Yes, you can use acrylic paint on wood, but painting with an acrylic paint can be challenging. It is important to seal the wood first, otherwise, the wood can move and warp because of humidity changes.

The paint won’t have a good bond if you don’t use primer or gesso. There are many types of acrylic paint and when you’re choosing the colors for a particular project, you can choose from student grade, fluorescent, craft, and gouache acrylic paint.

Student grade acrylics are the least expensive acrylic paint available but tend to have less pigment. Gouache acrylic paints are similar to typical watercolors with greater color intensity and outstanding opaque and reflective qualities.

Fluorescent acrylics are bright and glowing colors, and the glow effect is achieved through the use of a black light. Craft acrylics are generally versatile and inexpensive but tend to run.

Wood Preparation Before Using Acrylic Paint

When painting a wooden surface with any type of acrylic paint, you need to first prepare the wood in a well-ventilated area like outdoors or a work area with plenty of windows because it has a strong odor that can cause a headache.

For small craft projects, it is helpful using an easel to prop up the wood piece once it’s time to begin painting. No easel is needed for larger surfaces like paneling.

Smoothen the wood to even out the surface by using a sandpaper. It’s best to use a 140-grit to 180-grit sandpaper, sanding along the wood grain until the surface is nicely smoothened, and then rub the wooden surface using a tack cloth to remove any dirt, dust, and debris prior to painting.

The next step is to prime the wood so all exterior pores are filled for even absorption of acrylic paint. A spray-on primer is easy to apply.

Painting Using Acrylic Paint

When painting a specific design on a wood surface by using a stencil, you need to prepare to trace paper, a tracing instrument, and graphite paper.

Next, trace your desired design by placing the tracing paper over the design pattern and copying it.

Placing the graphite paper on the surface of the wood and the graphite surface face down, then place the tracing paper on the top of the graphite paper are the techniques you can use to transfer your desired design on the surface of the primed wood.

After which, you can squeeze the acrylic paint color on the palette. Clean the brush with water in between colors so the colors won’t mix together.

Keep paper towels and a bowl of water nearby, so you can wash the leftover paint from the brush when mixing or switching colors. Use a foam brush or sponge for applying acrylic paint to larger surfaces.

The brushes you can use for varying wood surfaces include a small round brush used for precision painting and also a flat brush for curves.

The wood surface becomes your blank canvas so you can create a beautiful and intricate painting. You can use a foam brush for broad strokes to create a lustrous or matte design.

If you want to create blended colors, you have to clean the brush first and then apply a different color while they are still et. Dry acrylic paint brushes thoroughly in between colors using paper towels. After painting on the side, allow the surface to completely dry, and then turn the wood on the other side to paint it.

An art project should be dried in 24 hours. The final step is to use a sponge brush to seal the paint. Sealing the final output is very important to protect the art from wear and tear.


Acrylic paint is versatile and will beautifully stick to almost anything, including wood. For preparing the work, the important materials you’ll need include primer, fine grit sandpaper, and a sealant for sealing the color after application. Preparing your wood properly will ensure that your chosen color of acrylic paint will stick on the hardboard surface or wood. For a successful decorative project, acrylic paints and art supplies are available in local stores or on

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