How To Make Sap Green Paint And Pigment At Home!

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Although sap green has always been a widely used color, it has seen a spike in use for both general artwork and home decoration recently. As with all paint colors that suddenly see a random surge in popularity, we have noticed a number of people reaching out and asking questions about sap green paint and pigments for their artwork.

Although we have noticed a wide range of questions, people reaching out to ask how to make sap green paint and pigment is definitely one of the more common questions. Due to this, we have decided to publish a dedicated article going over how you are able to make your own sap green paint in the comfort of your own home be it by mixing other paint colors in your collection or by mixing a sap green pigment directly with the required paint medium.

Although there are a number of different ways that you are able to make your own sap green paint for cheap, the majority of our readers will probably be better off just going with a decent commercially produced sap green paint if possible. Sap green paints tend to be cheap and are the exact color whereas self-mixed colors can be way off and adding your own pigments to paint mediums can have varied results whereas a commercial paint is more consistent.

What Is Sap Green?

Sap green is a bright yet mid-ranged green coloring that has a slight yellow undertone that offers excellent performance as a stand-alone color or when mixed with others. Sap green is available from all major paint producers and the creation process is cheap enough for sap green paint products to be within everyone’s budget.

What Colors Do You Mix To Make Sap Green?

You are able to use viridian green as a base color and then add small amounts of cadmium orange to get it as close to sap green as possible. Although this can take a while as you do need to add the cadmium orange is small portions, it does tend to be the best way to get a sap green via mixing existing colors in your palette.

Another common but less consistent way to make your own sap green from mixing existing colors in your palette is to take a diarylide yellow and then add it in small amounts to a base of pthalocyanine blue (green shade). Again, take your time as you need to add the diarylide yellow in very small amounts to get close to a sap green but using viridian green and cadmium orange usually delivers a much more consistent color to sap green when mixed.

Our final option and the less common due to so few people carrying quinacridone gold in their paint palette is to add small amounts of quinacridone gold to pthalo green. Although this can result in a beautiful color that is very close to sap green, there is no point in going out to purchase a tube of quinacridone gold just for this when you could just pick up some actual sap green paint.

How To Make Sap Green Pigment!

It is actually surprisingly easy to make your own sap green pigment from scratch as it is simply made from the unripened berries of the buckthorn plant. The majority of our readers are from North America and Europe and buckthorn is very common in most of Europe and Canada with some states in the USA also having high concentrations of buckthorn to source your berries.

If you do live in an area where buckthorn is plentiful, you should easily be able to source enough berries to make your own sap green pigment. Keep in mind that the berries have to be unripened for optimal performance and the acidity of the ground they grow in can also play a big part in the actual color of pigment they will produce.

Once you have your buckthorn berries you have to extract the juice from them. Although pressing the berries is the traditional method, an easier method is to simply blend them and then filter them through a coffee filter. The extracted juice from the buckthorn berries will usually thicken naturally into a heavy syrup ready to be added to your paint medium of choice that we will cover below.

As the majority of people don’t have time to go out and find buckthorn berries you are able to purchase a pre-made sap green pigment online that will perform just as well as a homemade option. You can then take that pigment and add it to various paint mediums as required to make your own sap green paint.

How To Make Sap Green Acrylic Paint!

To make your own sap green acrylic paint you simply add your sap green pigment to some clear gesso acrylic if possible although some people have used white gesso but it does lighten the color. If you are making your own homemade sap green pigment then it can be difficult to get the consistency correct for it to work with gesso but pre-made commercial pigments tend to be very easy.

Once you have your pigment in your gesso you simply mix the two together until they have been thoroughly mixed. At this stage, assess the color of the mixture and decide if you need to add more pigment or gesso to darker or lighten the color to get it closer to sap green. If you are using clear gesso then you will need much less pigment than if you use white gesso so keep that in mind too.

If you are using a commercial pre-made sap green pigment as well as some gesso that you had to specifically buy for this then just buying some sap green acrylic paint will usually workout to be a much cheaper option. If you know for a fact that you need large amounts of sap green paint and that you will be using all of your gesso to make your own sap green acrylic paint then the costs can start to balance out.

How To Make Sap Green Oil Paint!

To make your own sap green oil paint you simply add small amounts of your sap green pigment to a popular oil paint medium. Although there are some professional level oil paint mediums on the market, many people do just use regular lintseed oil as it is much cheaper with many people already having it in their home.

Mix the pigment and the oil medium together as require and add additional pigment to darken your homemade paint or more medium to lighten it as required throughout the process. If you do choose to use lintseed oil ensure that it is clear and not tinted prior to adding your pigment if you are using a commercial oil paint medium then you can usually just add your pigment right away.

As we touched on above for acrylic paint, it can workout to be much cheaper to just purchase some sap green oil paint for yourself rather than actually make it yourself from scratch though so you have to keep that in mind. You can bring costs in line with each other by using lintseed oil though as it is much cheaper than a commercial oil paint medium.

How To Make Sap Green Watercolor Paint!

You are able to make your own sap green watercolor paint by adding some sap green pigment to a suitable medium such as gum Arabic but the process of making your own watercolor paint tends to be harder than making your own acrylic or oil paints. Getting the gum Arabic to the ideal consistency is a pain and the other products that can work as a watercolor medium tend to either be expensive or even harder to work with than gum Arabic.

This is why we just recommend that most of our readers try to just mix existing paint colors in their palette as explained earlier in the article or just purchase a sap green water color paint and use that instead. Either of these two options will usually be much easier for you than trying to make your own pigment-based solution for your own sap green watercolor paint.


That brings our article going over how to make sap green paint and pigment at home to an end. Thankfully, sap green is one of the easier options that we see people reaching out about making in the comfort of their own home making it a good beginner option for anyone looking to get into making their own paints. Depending on the exact situation and your needs though, just purchasing a commercial sap green paint can be a better option for a large number of our readers.