Enamel Paint Vs Acrylic


Enamel paints and acrylic paints are two completely different types of paints that each serve specific purposes. Understanding the difference between these two is vital to knowing which to choose. In general, enamel paint is a durable household paint appropriate for many do-it-yourself projects. Acrylics are water-based art mediums appropriate for, among other things, scrapbooking activities. But artists also use "enamels." Educate yourself about the details of the differences.

History of Enamel

  • Enamel used to refer to only some oil-based paints. Today, some water-based finished products use the term "enamel." Acrylics are always water based.

Finish Differences

  • Acrylics dry to a matte finish and can be covered with a gloss if preferred. Enamels dry to a glossy finish.

Function of Each

  • High gloss enamel paints work well in kitchens and bathrooms. Enamels dry to a hard finish and are washable. Acrylics are often used by artists.

Fun Fact

  • Acrylic paints can be used in place of fabric paints. After painting cotton clothing, allow it to dry and then heat set.

Warnings When Using

  • Many enamel paints must be used with ventilation due to fumes. Acrylics do not have this problem.

Types of Paint

  • The term "acrylic enamel" refers to an automobile paint. Many feel that it is inferior to acrylic urethane, because the latter has better UV protection.

Misconceptions About Enamel

  • Artists who use oil paints instead of acrylics on paper or canvas are not using enamel paints. Artists do use enamels on surfaces such as copper and glass.

Related Searches


  • Photo Credit Goodshoot/Goodshoot/Getty Images
Promoted By Zergnet



You May Also Like

  • Polyurethane vs. Acrylic Urethane Finish

    Both polyurethane and acrylic urethane have similar benefits when applied in layers to wood. But there are differences between these protective finishes:...

  • Difference Between Enamel & Latex Paint

    It can be trickier to select the type of paint for your weekend home upgrade than it is to pick a color.

  • Lacquer Paint Vs Enamel Paint

    Deciding whether to use lacquer paint vs. enamel paint on your model depends on exactly how you're using it. In general, lacquer...

  • Urethane Vs. Enamel Paint

    Urethane and acrylic enamel paints are most commonly used for auto body finishes. Acrylic enamel is the more traditional option that was...

Related Searches

Check It Out

22 DIY Ways to Update Your Home on a Small Budget

Is DIY in your DNA? Become part of our maker community.
Submit Your Work!