Asked on Oct 2, 2020

Fixing thick, gummy acrylic craft paint in bottles

FlipturnBetsyNan W.


Hi there: Any suggestions for "fixing" acrylic craft paint (in bottles) when it starts to get thick, gummy, etc? I've seen suggestions for adding water? But wasn't sure if there was something better? thanks

9 answers
  • Em
    on Oct 2, 2020

    Water works. There is a product call Flow Improver but is pricey. Cheaper to just buy a new bottle than to use it.

  • GrandmasHouseDIY
    on Oct 2, 2020

    Hi there, I agree water will work just fine with any paint that is water based (acrylic) just add a little and thoroughly mix before adding more to not accidentally thin it out too much.

  • Baxter
    on Oct 2, 2020

    Craft acrylic paint is so inexpensive, that I would suggest to replace the bottles that have dried up, or use the paint for texture in a looser application. But you can try water to thin the paint---but not more than one-third of the amount of paint you are thinning. If you use more than 30% water, your paint will lose its opaqueness and will result in a "wash" paint. You could also use Gel Medium but your paintings will show an increase in brush strokes. The best thing to use is a FLOW AID ADDITIVE that extends the life and drying time of acrylic paint. Liquitex makes a good additive as well as Golden. I only use an additive when painting with more expensive paints like GOLDEN Heavy Body Acrylics or Fluid Acrylics.

  • Redcatcec
    on Oct 2, 2020

    I use a little water to thin it out, too much and you have a wash type product. It is an inexpensive product, even though many dislike being wasteful, you may have to replace it.

  • I've added water and it's been fine. Start with a few drops so you don't thin it too much.

  • Nan W.
    Nan W.
    on Oct 3, 2020

    Water has always worked for me. Don't be too impatient... let the water mingle overnite!

  • Betsy
    on Oct 3, 2020

    Hi Alison: I've used water and it worked. Start with just a bit and shake the heck out of it. You might even put a couple small pebbles in the bottle to help with the mixing.

  • Flipturn
    on Oct 3, 2020

    How old is the paint?

    How airtight are the containers that it has been sitting in?

    If the paint has already developed a 'skin' on top, this will have to be entirely removed first before you try to re-hydrate it.

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