Tips to Mix Paint and Polyurethane to Get Better Result

You have a plan to do some coating on the furniture. One of the interesting ideas is can you mix paint and polyurethane.

You save effort and time by blending them to may finish two jobs with a single stroke. Efficiency is a thing you aim for with this application.

The paint in this mixture with polyurethane is critical. If you pick the wrong one, your entire piece is ruined by a poor job. Make sure that you select the correct one.

Can you put polyurethane over the paint?

Polyurethane is capable of protecting and extending the life of the paint. It accomplishes this by acting as a superior resistant barrier, shielding paint from rain, mud, fungus, dirt, and mold.

Polyurethane even helps to prevent the color from fading when exposed to sunlight. Although it is commonly used on stained wood because of the long-lasting finish, some homeowners apply it on top of the paint.

However, oil-based paints are known to be yellow when coated with polyurethane over time.

As a solution, you rely on a water-based compound inside the paint. It can blend with polyurethane properly to create the top coating layer.

Knowing the base of ingredients is the key to success in this task. As you know, water and oil can be in the same place but not mixed.

It does not mean there is no such method to blend both properly. Some options are available to fix this issue so that you may mix polyurethane and paint with no hassle.

Blending Acrylic Paint with Polyurethane

If you intend to coat on acrylic paint and polyurethane, apply both solutions separately. Generally, after the acrylic one has fully cured, brush water polyurethane over it. If the paint is water-based, you can mix it with a polyurethane product with the same compound.

Some experience users might not recommend it, but everyone is free to try it. It is also worth noting that mixing if you use flat paint. For a glossy finish right away, you start with a soft sheen product.

Some reasons to apply a couple of coats of polyurethane over acrylic paint:

Obtain a smoother finish:

Even if polyurethane is not fully smooth, it will provide your item with a superior, smoother finish than acrylic paint alone.

Brighten the surface:

Most acrylic paints have a dreary, dry, and dark appearance. By applying a clear polyurethane layer that will remain shining for a long time, you may instantly improve your project and brighten the aesthetics.

The proper way to polyurethane over paint

Start with cleaning the surface. Before applying the first layer of polyurethane, all stains, dried mud, and dirt must be removed.

To do cleaning the painted wood, use a sponge and a detergent. Using a clean cloth is also possible as an alternative. After the surface is dried, you should use sandpaper to scratch it.

Polyurethane can be water or oil-based. The primary distinction is that oil-based has an amber tint.

On the other side, water-based product is clear with less chemical mixture. You begin to apply the first layer and etch the wood surface.

Put on the second layer and allow 24 hours for anything you coated to dry completely.

What Paint Will Stick to Polyurethane?

Any paint will adhere to the primed polyurethane surface.

The main thing is to clean and sand the surface before applying a high-quality primer to allow the fresh paint to attach. Without these preceding processes, no paint will adhere to polyurethane.

Of course, you read the label’s instructions and compound list. The manufacturer gives broad instructions on how the user uses the product correctly.

It would help if you avoided acrylic and water-based primers because they will not function correctly. Water paint and other types adhere without issue after priming.

How to Prep Polyurethane for Paint

To prepare polyurethane for a painting, wipe the surface using a clean and moist cloth. You may try a lint-free cloth soaked with mineral spirits and water solution to clean it. After eliminating every dirt, sand the area down and apply primer.

Following these procedures in the correct sequence will guarantee that whatever paint you put to the polyurethane will adhere and produce a lasting layer. Otherwise, ignoring the priming step is comparable to planning for failure.

You don’t want to squander your efforts due to a lack of focus. If no primer is used, the paint will flake off and ruin the look shortly after drying.

Can You Paint Over Polyurethane without Sanding?

Using a Deglosser, you can paint on top of polyurethane without sanding.

Deglosser is a liquid that can etch the varnished surface, roughening it up like sandpaper and providing the necessary roughness to paint on.

It is also known as liquid sandpaper because capable of eliminating the glossy shine. It creates a rough and ready surface for painting.

This product is suitable for objects like furniture with delicate details that are not easy to sand.

Because it is a liquid, the Deglosser will get into the tightest areas and roughen them immediately for refinishing.

Disadvantages of mixing polyurethane with a paint

The main issue with combining polyurethane and acrylic paint is that oil and water cannot be mixed.

Water and oil do not combine, and the oil molecules usually push the water molecules away. As a result, the oil clumps together and floats around in the water.

That indicates that if you mixed oil-based polyurethane with water-based paint, you’d obtain a similar unmixable result. You will end up with a clumpy, semi-solid mass that isn’t useful.

Although it is possible to blend water-based varnish with acrylic paint, it is not recommended. The best method here is to apply the paint and allow it to cure.

Following that, apply the protective polyurethane layers. Furthermore, many paint types, such as latex paint, do not mix well with polyurethane finishes.

As a result, combining polyurethane and paint is not the most excellent way to tackle your woodworking project.

Although combining these two components may appear more convenient, you should avoid doing so because it will destroy the entire artwork.

Can you paint over polyurethane cabinets?

It is possible to paint after polyurethane cabinets. Remove any things from the cupboards and clean them with a soap or mineral spirit and water-based solution.

Scuff up on the surface you want to paint after cleaning the area. It would be best if you also had a primer before adding paint.

To reach the heights of kitchen cabinets, you need a ladder for this task. Be careful when going the top spot and ensure you have the right balance.

You might also apply a primer and the paint using a roller on plain surfaces and a brush on the curved spot.

Can you mix gloss acrylic paint with polyurethane?

A water-based product such as polyurethane and acrylic may be blended with latex to provide a robust, durable surface. The finishing color is as similar to the latex one.

Put them into the same can with a ratio of two over one for paint and water-based product, respectively. You mix and stir them carefully, and use a brush or a roller to apply.

The first layer will be transparent when dry, and the second one will look opaque like plain paint.

If you add waterborne finish to the combination 50:50, the final will be tougher and highly durable, but it takes extra coats to turn into opaque.

This reinforced paint has a wide range of applications. You may obtain the rich appearance of lacquer using gloss paint and water-based finish, with less exposure of toxic fumes.

Semi-gloss is also a good alternative for the interior look of cabinet furniture. It is relatively easier to paint anything you desire and finish it with a minimum of three coats of polyurethane.

Mixing polyurethane with oil-based paint

What else can I mix with polyurethane? Oil-based polyurethane can be mixed with oil stain to make a mixture with the color and consistency you want.

Oil-based polyurethane can be combined with oil stain to make a mixture with your desired color and thickness.

Make sure that the polyurethane and the wood stain have the same base when you mix them. For example, to mix, they must both be oil-based.

Mixing water-based polyurethane with acrylic paint

If you want to use acrylic paint and polyurethane together, apply them separately.

It implies you must wait for the acrylic paint to dry before applying the water-based polyurethane.

However, using water-based acrylic paint, you can mix a few drops with the water-derived polyurethane before applying it.

This is mainly done to prevent the finished result from having a gray, unpleasant appearance, and it is especially advised when using darker colors.

The thing to consider is that if you mix flat paints with polyurethane, you won’t get a shiny look.

Instead, if you want a great sheen or polished finish, you should start with a shiny paint product.