Are you looking to give your home a quick and easy makeover? Painting your walls with acrylic paint is one of the best ways to instantly transform any space. With its rich, bold colors and fast drying time, acrylic paint allows you to revamp a room in a fraction of the time of traditional wall paints. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know to give your walls a vibrant new look in no time with acrylic paint.
Acrylic paint has become increasingly popular for painting interior walls thanks to its many advantages over other paint types. Made from acrylic polymer emulsions, acrylic wall paint is water-based, making it easy to apply and quick to dry. It also provides superior color vibrancy and intensity that can really make your walls pop. In addition, acrylic paint forms a plastic-like protective shield over your walls that helps resist stains, moisture, and scrubbing. This makes it a great choice for high-traffic areas prone to dirt, fingerprints, and wear. Best of all, acrylic dries permanent, so you can enjoy your makeover for years to come.
Choosing the Right Acrylic Paint for Walls
When selecting acrylic paint for your wall makeover, you’ll first want to consider the finish. Acrylic paint comes in a range of sheens from matte to high gloss. A matte or eggshell finish tends to work best for most walls since it helps hide imperfections and provides a subtle elegance. Gloss and satin acrylic finishes give walls bold color intensity along with a stylish shine, making them ideal for accent walls in living rooms, kitchens or bathrooms. For high-moisture areas like basements, bathrooms and laundry rooms, a satin or semi-gloss acrylic offers enhanced resistance to moisture and mildew.
You’ll also want to choose between interior and exterior acrylic paint formulas. Interior acrylic latex paints are specially designed for use in indoor spaces. They provide great washability along with a mildew-resistant finish. Exterior acrylic latex paints are formulated to withstand outdoor temperature swings, rain, snow and UV rays. You can use exterior acrylic paint indoors, but interior acrylics should not be used outside.
In terms of quality, artist-grade acrylics offer superior lightfastness and pigment concentration for a more vivid, long-lasting look. But basic craft acrylics contain fewer pigments and more fillers, making them more affordable for large wall painting projects. Look for an acrylic wall paint from a reputable brand that specifically states “For Walls” for best results.
Preparing Walls for Acrylic Paint
Properly preparing your walls prior to painting is key to achieving gorgeous, long-lasting results with acrylic paint. Start by cleaning walls thoroughly with a microfiber cloth, sponge and mild soap and water to remove any dirt, grease or grime. For smoother painting, fill any cracks, holes and imperfections with spackle or joint compound, then sand smooth. Acrylic paint adheres best to matte, porous surfaces, so sand walls with fine grit sandpaper to dull any existing glossy paint or wallpaper.
Priming walls before painting with acrylic paint is highly recommended. An acrylic primer designed for walls helps the paint adhere evenly for minimal brush and roller marks. Priming also allows the acrylic wall paint to glide on easily and fully cover the surface. Be sure to select a primer tinted to match your wall color for optimal coverage. Apply with a thick roller in the same direction over the entire wall surface area.
Painting Techniques for Acrylic on Walls
One of the great things about acrylic paint is that it can be applied using all the same tools as standard latex wall paints. For cutting in edges and painting trim, opt for angled sash paint brushes sized 1-3 inches. Use a high-quality roller with a 1/2-3/4 inch nap for smoothest coverage on large wall sections. Extension poles for rollers allow you to easily paint tall walls and ceilings in a single coat.
When rolling acrylic paint onto walls, work in 3-4 foot square sections and maintain a wet edge as you go to prevent lap marks. Roll the paint in horizontal “W” or “V” patterns without overspreading for even coverage. For the most professional results, apply at least two thin coats of acrylic wall paint, allowing each coat to fully dry in between. This helps create a durable, evenly colored surface.
Certain acrylic painting techniques like ragging, sponging, stippling and dry brushing can also create gorgeous artistic effects on your walls. Outline sections with painter’s tape, then dab, roll or brush layers of contrasting paint colors. Just be sure to properly prepare the wall and seal painted designs for washability.
Tips for Avoiding Common Paint Issues
- Cut in edges first with a brush before rolling paint
- Work in small sections to prevent lap marks
- Roll in a consistent pattern without overspreading
- Apply multiple thin coats rather than one thick coat
- Allow proper drying time between coats
Special Techniques with Acrylic Wall Paint
One of the benefits of acrylic paint is that it can easily be used to create intricate wall murals, graphics, designs and artistic effects. Start by taping off clean lines and geometric patterns with painter’s tape. Then use a brush or roller to apply your base wall color inside the taped outlines. Once dry, simply remove the tape to reveal gorgeous designs.
For more artistic looks, try using sponges, rags or stiff-bristled brushes to stipple, roll or dry brush on contrasting acrylic paint colors inside the outlined areas. You can also mix sheens like gloss and satin acrylics to add eye-catching dimension. Metallic acrylic paints in gold, silver or copper lend a touch of glamour to accent walls. Just let your creativity guide you!
Acrylic Wall Painting Tips
|– Use painter’s tape for clean lines
|– Mix sheens and finishes
|– Layer colors and textures
|– Incorporate metallic paints
|– Try artistic techniques like ragging
|– Seal completed designs for protection
Protecting and Maintaining Acrylic Wall Paint
One downside to acrylic paint is that it is not as inherently durable against cleaning, moisture and wear and tear as oil-based paints. So you’ll need to take steps to protect acrylic walls post-painting. Allow the acrylic paint at least 2 weeks to fully cure and harden before cleaning walls or applying any protective finishes.
General upkeep involves gently washing walls with a microfiber cloth, mild soap and warm water to remove dirt and grime as needed. Avoid abrasive cleaners, scrub brushes and excessive moisture that could scratch the paint surface. For added protection in kitchens, bathrooms, kids’ rooms and other high-use areas, apply 2-3 coats of a clear acrylic wall paint sealer. This creates a washable, protective shield against moisture, stains and scrubs.
Even with proper sealing, acrylic wall paint may show signs of wear over time, especially on dark matte colors. Plan to touch up wall paint as needed, especially along edges, trim and high-traffic areas. Thankfully, acrylic paint re-coats easily years later without the need for repainting entire walls.
Caring for Acrylic Wall Paint
- Allow 2 weeks for curing before cleaning
- Gently wash walls as needed with mild cleaners
- Avoid abrasive pads and excessive moisture
- Apply acrylic wall paint sealers for added protection
- Touch up paint over time as wear occurs
Acrylic Paint vs. Other Wall Paint Options
When compared to traditional wall paints, acrylic offers some clear advantages along with a few limitations to consider:
Acrylic vs. Latex Paint:
Acrylic paint is more fade and stain resistant than latex. It also provides richer, more vivid color. However, latex paint is more breathable and flexible. It tends to hold up better to scrubbing without showing wear and tear.
Acrylic vs. Oil-Based Paint:
Oil-based enamels are tougher, more durable and more moisture resistant than acrylics. However, oil paint requires extra safety precautions, takes much longer to dry and emits strong fumes. Acrylics are lower odor and can be cleaned up with just soap and water.
When choosing paint for different wall surfaces, acrylic works well on drywall, plaster, wood, cement and metal. Oil-based paints are recommended for heavily stained walls and laminate surfaces. Latex paints adhere better to flexible surfaces like wallpaper and fabric.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is acrylic paint durable on walls?
Acrylic paint is quite durable on properly primed wall surfaces. It forms a flexible plastic-like shield that resists chipping, cracking and peeling. Multiple coats provide enhanced protection and longevity.
Does acrylic paint wash off walls?
When properly applied to an acrylic-primed wall, acrylic paint has good washability and stain resistance. Glossier acrylic sheens are easiest to clean. But acrylic walls should always be washed gently with mild cleaners to prevent wear over time.
Can you paint latex over acrylic?
Yes, latex paint can be applied over a fully cured acrylic painted wall. The textures and sheens may differ slightly, so priming first is recommended for a seamless look.
Revitalizing your home with acrylic paint is one of the fastest and most affordable ways to give walls an instant vibrant makeover. With its quick dry time, dazzling color choices and artistic versatility, acrylic paint allows you to easily refresh a room in a weekend. Just be sure to properly prepare walls, apply multiple coats and take steps to protect the finish. In no time, you can enjoy vivid, eye-catching walls without the mess, odor and labor of traditional paints.
So don’t wait any longer. Grab some acrylic paint in your favorite bold hues and get ready to give your walls a fresh new look that makes your whole space pop! Let acrylic paint help you fall in love with your home all over again.