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How to deal with acrylic paint accidents

How to deal with acrylic paint accidents


Paint accidents – If you catch a painting accident quickly, the acrylic can be washed right off. Here is a chart for dealing with painting accidents:

Time since ACCIDENT ON blank canvas or previously painted acrylics that have dried for 48 hours or more ON clothing
Still wet! Use plenty of water and a paper towel and just wipe it right off. Old paint is impervious! Wash the fabric under cool running water until completely clean. Scrub with hand soap if needed and agitate the cloth against itself (grinding the fabric breaks up the paint particles)
Dried within the last 5 minutes Soak the paint with a wet paper towel for a minute or two. Then scrub with a brush. Rinse. Wipe. Repeat until clean.  Soak the fabric with cool water for 5 minutes. Then apply lots of hand soap and grind fabric between gripped fingers for a minute or two. Rinse. Repeat until clean. Dry by placing several layers of paper towels inside and out and wringing the “sandwich” of towels and fabric to transfer the water to the towels.
Completely dried for 5 – 30 minutes  Soak the paint with very wet towel for 5-10 minutes and try the above. Pick with a palette knife to flake off paint if possible. If unsuccessful, dry it off and repaint over the area. Wet the fabric and keep it wet until it can be removed. Soak garment in cool water for 30 minutes. Use hand soap with the above method and you can also try hand sanitizer or brush cleaning soaps.

About The Author

Dennas Davis

Dennas is the founder of Firstlight Arts Academy in Nashville, and also of The Art Instructor (formerly ArtSquish). He has been designing, painting, illustrating and teaching in various combinations since he learned how to hold a crayon. He is the illustrator of 24 children's books with over 5 million in print worldwide. See his paintings at

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