How To Seal Acrylic Paint On Leather!

With more and more people within the arts and crafts space getting involved in customising leather fabric being as clothing, furniture or some other type of leather, have noticed a steady increase in the number of people reaching out to ask how to get the best possible performance out of their artwork. Due to a number of minor issues with using acrylic paints on leather, we have noticed more and more people specifically reaching out with questions on how to seal acrylic paint on leather.

With so many people reaching out about sealing acrylic paint onto leather after adding their own custom artwork, we have decided to publish this dedicated article with the hope of being able to help any of our readers who are having the same issue. Thankfully, there are some quick, easy, and cheap ways that you are able to seal acrylic paint onto a leather surface to drastically improve its performance and we will go over the more popular methods later in the article.

Please note though, one of the main issues that we see time and time again is that so many people failed to actually clean their leather surface with a leather prep and deglazing product prior to actually applying thier acrylic paint to their leather. Although you are still able to add an effective sealant on top of your acrylic paint, not correctly prepping your leather prior to painting it can cause poor results once your paint and sealing agent is dry.

How To Seal Acrylic Paint On Leather!

The majority of the methods that we will cover offer similar performance on both real and faux leather but the quality of any faux leather will drastically effect your results where as real leather tends to be consistent no matter the quality. This is due to some of the cheaper faux leather products offering a very poor surface for acrylic paint that will easily peal even if you do add a good sealing agent to it.

As you would expect, some of the methods below do offer considerably better performance than others for the exact same task. That said though, we have organised our article in descending order of effectiveness meaning that the more effective methods are at the top of the list to try and help our readers find the best solution for their needs without wasting time on the whole article.

Depending on exactly what you need and what you are going to be doing with your acrylic paints on your leather, a less effective medium may be the better option if you know for a fact you will have to strip everything down sometime in the future. Due to the majority of people wanting permanent or at least long term artwork on their leather, the descending order of the leather sealants for acrylic paints will usually be correct for your needs.

Angelus Leather Acrylic Finisher!

In our opinion, the best option to seal your acrylic paints onto leather is definitely Angelus leather acrylic finisher. Not only it is cheap, easy to use, and very effective but it also has one of the best reputations within the arts and crafts community for being able to seal any type of paint onto a leather surface without having issues with color fade.

The sealant is available in two different application forms, a brush applied sealant and a spray applied sealant. Although we do usually recommend that our readers go for the spray option due to it usually being easier, we have seen a small number of reports from people having issues with the spray variant of the product. Due to this, we would recommend that our readers go with the brush applied variant and apply a very thin layer to their acrylic paint once it has dried onto their leather.

The product is also available with a matte or a gloss finish so you can choose the option that best fits your needs with both performing very well. The main advantage of Angelus’ leather sealer is that it preserves the colors of your acrylic paints from the very start to ensure that they will stay bright while your artwork retains its detail for as long as possible.

Can You Use Fabric Medium On Leather?

Although it is not actually a sealing agent, a decent fabric medium has to be our second recommendation to our readers looking to get their acrylic paints to stick to their leather surfaces correctly and not peel off. We are fully aware that many of the fabric mediums on the market are close to useless when used with leather but the Delta Creative Ceramcoat Fabric Medium has the proven ability to work with your paints to seal them to leather with ease.

Although they do recommend that you only use their own Delta Creative Cermacoat acrylic paint with their fabric medium, this is probably just a marketing ploy to get more money out of you as the medium tends to work well with all acrylic paints when used correctly. If you haven’t actually purchased your acrylic paints for your leather artwork yet the Delta Creative set can be a great option when used with their fabric medium though.

Unlike an actual sealing agent that needs you to paint your leather surface with your acrylic paints first and then apply the sealant over the top of them. You actually mix the fabric medium with your acrylic paints prior to applying them to your leather to improve performance from the get go. Although it is not essential, you can then seal them in with something like the Angelus leather acrylic finisher covered above for the best possible performance.

Can I Use Mod Podge To Seal Acrylic Paint On Leather?

We constantly see people reaching out to ask if they are able to seal acrylic paint onto leather with Mod Podge and although it can work, it tends to perform worse than the two methods above and the results do seem to vary wildly from person to person. This could be due to there being a few different Mod Podge formulas on the market these days but the yellow label with the red text on it seems to be the more popular option for leather.

Although we would always recommend that you go with either of the two options covered above, we know that a huge number of people in the arts and crafts space already have Mod Podge in their collection so it can be a way to keep costs low for any short term artwork. Think of something like some custom acrylic paint artwork on a leather jacket for a fancy dress party or something like that.

Anything long term should use either Angelus leather acrylic finisher or Delta Creative Ceramcoat Fabric Medium due to their more consistent performance. Another issue that we see with people who are using Mod Podge is that they will apply far too much as you only need a very small amount over your acrylic paints to work so keep that in mind during the application phase.

Can You Seal Acrylic Paint To Leather With Hairspray?

We constantly see people reaching out about using hairspray to seal acrylic paint to leather and we highly recommend against this option. We only included hairspray in our article so we are able to specifically point out the weaknesses of the method to try and help prevent any of our readers from taking this route.

Although you are able to use hairspray to seal acrylic paint in some situations, this is almost always on a flat, rigid surface but the majority of leather artwork is on clothing or furniture that will be moving during use. This tends to cause issues for anyone who uses hairspray as a sealant for acrylic paint on leather resulting in their artwork often peeling.

Another issue is that there are so many different hairspray formulas on the market these days that it is difficult to offer solid advice for any single formula. This is another one of the reasons that the use of hairspray to seal acrylic paint in general is debated amongst the community. Our recommendation would be to avoid it altogether and just go with one of the options covered above as they perform much better but are often budget friendly enough for the majority of our readers to take that route instead anyway.


That brings our article going over how to seal acrylic paint on leather to an end and we hope that our readers have found it helpful. There are so many “methods” that you see people talking about that tend to perform very poorly so we hope that we have been able to help our readers use a decent, reliable sealant on their acrylic paint that they are using to customise their leather to ensure that they get the best possible results that will last.

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