Mercury Glass Light Fixture

3 Materials
1 Hour

How to make any clear glass object look like mercury glass.

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I tried this idea as part of a budget bathroom makeover. We completed the entire makeover for $200 so didn't have money in the budget to buy all new light fixtures. The faux mercury glass technique was a great way to add a little something extra to the builders-grade lights for just $10.

You want to do this project in a well-ventilated area. The Looking Glass paint has a VERY strong smell! You also want to make sure you have everything you need with you before you start because the paint dries so quickly.

Get all your materials together

What you'll need:

  • paper towels
  • Krylon Looking Glass spray paint
  • spritz bottle with equal parts water and white vinegar
  • clear glass items

I set up a station outside in the shade with a trash bag and a piece of cardboard to protect the driveway.

Be sure to wash and dry the clear glass items you’re going to turn into faux mercury glass before starting.

First Coat of Looking Glass Paint

Paint the INSIDE of the container using Krylon’s Looking Glass Silver spray paint. Use quick strokes to lightly apply the paint. It goes on very evenly with a really fine mist.

Wait For the Paint to Dry

Let it dry for about a minute. Since I was doing six globes, I just did each step on all six pieces before moving on to the next step. That was plenty of time for the paint to dry.

Make the Magic Happen!

Lightly spritz the wet paint with a fine mist of the vinegar/water mixture. Let it sit for a 15-30 seconds, then gently blot it dry with a wadded up paper towel. This lifts a tiny bit of the paint off the surface which gives you the mottled look of mercury glass.

Paint. Spritz. Blot. Repeat.

Repeat the process of misting with the vinegar/water mixture, blotting and lightly spraying another layer of the Looking Glass paint until you’ve achieved the effect you like.

Once You’re Happy With Your Results, Let Dry for 10-15 Minutes.

After you’ve done several layers, it really begins to look like mercury glass! I chose to end the process with another little spritz of the vinegar/water mixture to blot away a little more of the paint. Apparently, I don’t have a light touch when it comes to using spray paint, so every time I added more paint I covered up the speckles too much. Once you’re satisfied with your results, let them dry for 10-15 minutes.


Sit back and enjoy your results!

Resources for this project:

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Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

3 of 8 questions
  • Sue Brehm Neigel Sue Brehm Neigel on Sep 14, 2020

    I'm just curious why you spray the inside and not the outside of the glass? I love the look!

  • June Johnson June Johnson on Nov 18, 2020

    What is the water/vinegar ratio?

  • Christy Roppel Christy Roppel on Aug 26, 2021

    Love this. Just wondering if it's safe with the heat of the bulbs-?


Join the conversation

5 of 24 comments
  • Jill Jill on Oct 12, 2020

    Will this work on white frosted globes? Very nicely done. Love the look! It really adds a lot of interest to the lights.

    • See 1 previous
    • DD53 DD53 on Nov 19, 2020

      I have the same frosted glass globes. What do you think it would look like if you sprayed the outside of these?

  • Mari Mari on May 21, 2021

    I had no luck in finding "looking glass" spray paint I'm going to try high gloss silver and see how that goes.