Should You Use Acrylic Paint on Dried Hot Glue?

Have you made a specific shape with hot glue that you want to paint in different colors but want to know if you should use acrylic paint?

Yes, you can use acrylic paint on dried hot glue as long as the hot glue is stationary and will never flex.

You can also use acrylic paint to cover up traces of dried hot glue that you want to hide. But if the hot glue is flexible or will move, I suggest that you use latex paint on the dried hot glue instead of acrylic paint.

Acrylic paint is one of the best paints to use on dried hot glue. This is because acrylic paint is water-resistant when dried and will adhere well to the surface of the dried hot glue. More so, acrylic paint is partially elastic and can easily expand and contract with changes in the dried hot glue.

painting on dried hot glue

All these qualities make acrylic paint suitable to use on dried hot glue. Nevertheless, using acrylic paint on large hot glue projects can be expensive. Also, acrylic paint contains some chemicals, which can be toxic to the environment, especially when the acrylic paint dries.

When you use acrylic paint on dried hot glue, you should get a stunning result if you paint properly. But there are some necessary things you need to consider to achieve the best result.

Use the acrylic paint only on stationary hot glue

As I said earlier, don’t use acrylic paint on dried hot glue that is flexible or will move. Instead, use acrylic paint on dried hot glue that will not move at all. Otherwise, the acrylic paint will eventually chip off.

If the dried hot glue is not fixed, you should use latex paint instead.

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Apply a primer before painting

You should apply a primer to the surface of the hot glue before applying the acrylic paint. This is important if you’re painting the hot glue with the same color as its background. If you paint directly on hot glue without priming, you will encounter what is called color falsification.

Color falsification is an effect where the acrylic paint looks slightly different on the hot glue from the original color once it’s dried.

This problem becomes more obvious if you’re painting the dried hot glue to match its surrounding paint. Even if you apply the acrylic color to the hot glue and its surrounding at the same time, differences will still occur.

This is normal with acrylic paints on all rubber materials like hot glue. To avoid this problem of color falsification, apply a primer to the hot glue’s surface before painting. The primer will enable the acrylic color to retain its shade, vividness, and vibrancy.

When choosing a primer, the type of primer you choose is important to the success of your painting. As I said earlier, dried hot glue tends to expand and contract with temperature changes. Hence, choose a special flexible primer that also expands and contracts with the hot glue.

Depending on the type of primer you choose, you can either apply the primer using a brush or spray it over the dried hot glue. Both ways will work well. Apply the primer in one coat to the whole surface of the hot glue, that should be enough to achieve the best result.

After that, allow the primer to dry completely before applying the acrylic paint to the hot glue.

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Paint in multiple thin layers

You should apply the acrylic paint in multiple thin layers over the dried primed hot glue to achieve the desired effect. The first coat will not give much effect on the hot glue. So, you need to apply as many thin coats of acrylic paint as possible to cover the hot glue perfectly.

Applying the acrylic paint in about 4 to 5 layers should give you a perfect painting and allow each layer to dry properly before applying the next.

Some primers require a slight sanding before painting on them. If this applies to you, use fine-grit sandpaper to slightly smoothen the surface of the primer before painting it.

Reasons Why You Should Use Acrylic Paint on Dried Hot Glue

Are you still wondering why you should use acrylic paint on dried hot glue? Here are some of the reasons why using acrylic paint on dried hot glue is a good idea:

Acrylic paints are more resistant to outdoor and weather conditions: Once you apply acrylic paint on dried hot glue and it gets dried, it’s more resistant to water and weather conditions than latex paints. This means that you can use your design for outdoor purposes.

Acrylic paints are more suited to outdoor use: Due to their elastic nature, acrylic paints can be used on hot glue as it’ll expand and contract with the glue due to temperature changes.

Acrylic paints are easy to apply: Because they are flexible, acrylic paints can be easily applied or spread over the dried hot glue.

Acrylic paints are more durable: They will stay longer on your dried hot glue than latex paints.

Nevertheless, using acrylic paints on dried hot glue comes with a few drawbacks:

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Acrylic paints can be expensive: Though acrylic paints are readily available and easy to use, they can be expensive, especially the high-quality brands.

Acrylic paints are more toxic: Considering their chemical compositions, acrylic paints are more toxic than latex paints. This makes acrylic paints less environmentally friendly. Therefore, you should handle acrylic paints with more care.

Can You Mix Acrylic Paint with Hot Glue?

Unfortunately, you can’t mix acrylic paint with hot glue. Hot glue comes in a solid form while acrylic paint comes in a liquid form. This makes it impossible to mix acrylic paint with hot glue.

Hot glue, commonly called hot melt adhesive (HMA), is a form of thermoplastic adhesive that comes in a solid stick or ball shape.

You can only apply hot glue using a hot glue gun, which melts the glue to enable it to bind to surfaces. Once it’s applied, hot glue quickly solidifies at room temperature.

Apart from the fact that hot glue re-solidifies immediately after it’s applied, it’s also immiscible with acrylic paint because of its water-resistant properties.


Acrylic paint is a good choice for painting over dried hot glue. It’s more resistant to outdoor and weather conditions, can be easily applied, and is more durable than latex paint.

However, acrylic paint is more expensive and less environmentally friendly than latex paint.

Also, you can’t mix acrylic paint with hot glue, you need to do it later when the glue is dried.

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