How to Mix Latex & Acrylic Paints

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Though the two terms are sometimes interchangeable, acrylic and latex paints are slightly different. Acrylic paints are generally known as artists' paints, sold in concentrated, more expensive tubes. Latex paints are generally known as house paints, sold in larger quantities, from pints to gallons. Because both are water-based, you can mix them.


Most artists do not want to use house paint for fine arts because it doesn't last as long as artist's acrylic, but you may want to mix acrylics with latex to get the exact color or texture you need for a specific project. There are decorative applications for mixing the two, such as painting indoor murals or furniture.

Things You'll Need

  • Pint of latex paint
  • Small bucket or plastic container
  • Acrylic paint in tubes
  • Paint stirrer
  • Open the can of latex paint and pour a small amount into the bucket or container. Working in small amounts is easier, though if you're planning on covering a large surface area, you'll need to remix the color when you run out. In that case, it would be best to mix a larger batch, as long as you can use the color before the paint dries.

  • Squirt a small amount of the acrylic paint from the tube into the latex. Use as little as you think you'll need for the color you're after; it's easier to add color than it is to take color away.

  • Mix the paints together thoroughly. Test the color on a wall or piece of paper. Reassess and add more acrylic paint if a stronger color is desired.

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