Although acrylic paints have been popular for decades, they have seen a steady steady increase in their popularity over the last few years with more and more beginners taking to using acrylic paint as a hobby and pass time. Although acrylic paint does tend to dry much quicker than the other popular paint options used in arts and crafts, we have noticed more and more people reaching out to ask how to make acrylic paint dry faster.
Due to this, we have decided to publish this dedicated article going over a number of tips and tricks that you are able to use to get your acrylic paint to dry faster. That said though, we usually recommend that our readers practice patients if possible as acrylic paint does tend to dry quicker than the other paint options so simply leaving it to do its thing on your canvas or paint tends to be the better option in most cases.
The methods that you are able to get your acrylic paint to dry faster are based on increasing the airflow or the temperature around the artwork. There are some other methods that may help that we will also cover throughout the article. Due to covering so many different topics in the article, we have added our table of contents below to help you quickly navigate and save time.
- How Long Does It Take For Acrylic Paint To Dry?
- How To Make Acrylic Paint Dry Faster
How Long Does It Take For Acrylic Paint To Dry?
In ideal conditions, regular acrylic paints for arts and crafts tend to dry in less than an hour where as fast drying acrylic paints tend to try in under half an hour. That said though, there are some additional factors such as the thickness of your paint layers and the humidity in the room that do come into play that can potentially extend these drying times considerably.
Depending on your location, the local ambient temperature may be a factor in the drying times of your acrylic paints too with considerably colder temperatures being able to extend the expected drying time to around a day. On the flipside of this, if you do live in a considerably warmer area then your acrylic paint can dry faster than the average dry times listed above.
When we see people reaching out to ask for advise on getting their acrylic paints to dry faster, their issues usually are based around the factors explained above. Thankfully, they do tend to be very simple to correct helping you to dry your acrylic paints much faster than normal in those conditions.
How To Make Acrylic Paint Dry Faster
Can You Use A Hair Dryer On Acrylic Paint?
The most commonly used method to drying your acrylic paint is to use a simple hair dryer due to so many people already having one in their home. If you don’t currently have a hair dryer then a cheap travel hair dryer that has adjustable heats and speeds is easily able to get the job done without you having to spend much money.
The main reason that we recommend a cheap hair dryer as a way to get your acrylic paint to dry faster is that it increases both airflow and temperature helping to compound the two main things your acrylic paint requires to dry. Although some people do run their hair dryer as high as 266*F, we would recommend that you try to keep it lower than 120*F for optimal results without risking any potential damage to your artwork.
If you do choose to use a hair dryer, don’t get too close with it as keeping it around 30cm away from your canvas, paper, or other surface that has your acrylic paint on tends to be enough. Try not to focus the hair dryer on a single area of your artwork for too long either as you should ideally be moving the hair dryer over the acrylic paint at an even pace.
Can You Use A Heat Gun To Dry Acrylic Paint?
Although some people do use a heat gun to dry their acrylic paints as fast as possible, a heat gun tends to cost more and have additional settings on it that increase the risk of it going wrong. Unless you are familiar with using a heat gun or need it for other parts of your arts and crafts then we tend not to recommend them to our readers even though they can work well.
Using the heat gun is very similar to how you would use a hair dryer to get your acrylic paints to dry as fast as possible with you usually needing to hold it around 30cm away from the surface with your acrylic paints on. Different heat guns usually have different ways that it can project heat too but a constant, steady stream of between 86*F and 120*F does tend to be optimal for acrylic paints.
Although you may be able to use a higher temperature with it without the paint cracking or having issues, we still recommend that you keep it set to 120*F or below. It is simply not worth the risk of ruining your artwork by trying to shave a few minutes off the drying time for your acrylic paint by turning your heat gun up to a temperature that increases the overall risk.
Can You Use A Fan To Dry Acrylic Paint?
Another common method to dry acrylic paint as fast as possible is to take advantage of a cheap fan to increase the airflow over your artwork to help the paints dry. Due to there being a number of different fan options on the market, you may have to use them in a slightly different way to each other for optimal performance.
That said though, the easiest way is usually to keep the fan a few feet away from your artwork and set the fan to a low setting to gently blow air over your artwork. If you have the budget available for a fan that you are able to set to blow warm air then this can help with drying times even more but in all honesty, when you factor in the additional cost, it is usually overkill and not worth the higher price.
If you do already have a fan in your home that is able to blow warm area, check to see if if warm air is generated by a chemical reaction or via a heating element similar to a hair dryer. If it is based on a chemical reaction then we would not recommend you use it with your acrylic paint artwork as the chemicals may cause a reaction but if it is based on a heating element then it should be fine.
Can You Use An Electric Heater To Dry Acrylic Paint?
Depending on your situation, you are able to use a No products found. to help increase the overall temperature of the room that you paint in to get your acrylic paints to dry faster. Please note that this is not a valid option for everyone though and we would only recommend that you try a heater if you live in a colder area and that is the reason that your acrylic paint is taking so long to dry.
An electric heater can be an excellent option if you do live in a colder area as it is a cheap and easy way to normalise the temperature of the room to bring the expected drying time of your acrylic paint inline with the norm. Unlike the methods offered above though where you use a hair dryer or heat gun directly on your artwork, you simply put the electric heater in the same room as it, ideally on the other side of the room to your art and have it heat the whole room up.
As the average room temperature is usually under 70*F, we often recommend that you don’t go above this setting as an electric heater is not a method to dry your acrylic paint quicker than average, it is a way to bring it back inline with average in cold areas. Direct expose to your acrylic paints with some heaters can end up causing issues so this is why we usually recommend that you keep it in a safe area on the other side of the room to your artwork.
Can You Use A Dehumidifier To Help Dry Acrylic Paint?
If you do live in an area that has a humidity problem then a cheap dehumidifier can be worth its weight in gold for your home in general never mind for your artwork. Acrylic paints can take much longer than average to dry in areas that have a humidity problem so being able to put a dehumidifier in the room where you paint can reduce the negative effects of the humidity in the room to normalise the drying time.
Due to there being different levels of humidity in different areas, you will have to go through some trial and error to workout the optimal settings for you and your needs. Due to many people who live in areas that have problems with humidity already having a dehumidifier though, you may already know the optimal settings for your home in the location that you live in.
Similar to using the heater to help your acrylic paint dry quicker, you only need to put your dehumidifier in the same room as your artwork. There is no need to put the dehumidifier particularly close to your artwork as they are designed to work for the whole room over time and reduce the humidity that can cause your acrylic paint to take longer to dry.
Check Your Paint Layer Thickness!
The thickness levels of your acrylic paint layers also come into play with its drying time too and this can also be a common issue for beginners as they simply put too much acrylic paint on their brush. The thicker the layer, the longer it will take to dry and the timeframes work on an exponential scale where even small amounts of additional paint can result in much longer drying periods.
There are countless tutorials on YouTube that you are able to watch to get better with acrylic paints and learn how much paint you should be having on your brush at any given time. On top of this, different styles of acrylic painting will require thicker layers than other styles extending their drying times considerably.
If you are intentionally working on some artwork that does required thicker layers of acrylic paint, you are able to utilise the various options covered earlier in the article to help speed up the drying time. Please keep in mind though that the thicker the paint, the less of an effect the methods covered earlier in the article will have on the drying time.
That brings our article going over how you can make acrylic paint dry faster to a close. Thankfully, drying your acrylic paints in a timely manor tends to be much quicker and easier than the majority of people initially think. Many of the items and methods that you are able to use are common in the majority of households so there is a high chance that many of our readers may not even have to spend any money to help get their paints to dry quicker.