How to Paint on Plastic Products

September 2, 2019

How do you paint on plastic products?

  1. Pick the right kind of paint
  2. Clean the plastic surface
  3. Apply primer then paint
  4. Dry and apply finishing touches


Plastic injection molding offers a wide variety of molding and coloring options that allow you to create a wide array of designs. From containers, toys, medical prosthetics, and digital equipment, plastic is a versatile material that can be shaped into almost any item. 

When it comes to plastic products like toys and containers, standard plastic injection molding processes have provided the standard methods on how to manufacture these products in bulk. These products are not only molded into different shapes and sizes but are also molded in a wide selection of colors.

While using colored plastic pellets is the proper approach to adding color to your products, there are times that you would be able to enhance it by adding a splash of color yourself. Painting on plastic can be a challenge, as you would need the right kind of paint in order to provide the best colors. Along with this, you need to make sure that it would be able to stick to the surface. Here are some important steps that you have to know when it comes to painting on different kinds of plastic products. 


How to paint on plastic products

Painting on plastic products is a process that requires the right materials and tools to make sure that you would be able to have a quality finished product after. Make sure you follow some of these effective tips and advice while you add some color to your plastic products. 


What is the best paint for plastic?

What is the best paint for plastic?

The first step of painting plastic made from a plastic injection mold is picking the right kind of paint to be used for the plastic itself. Not all types of plastic are compatible with paint, and vice versa, which is why you should identify the right types of paint that can be used to paint plastic. Here are three types of paint that are considered to be the best paint options when it comes to adding color to your plastic:

Spray Paint – One of the most effective types of paint for plastic, spray paint allows you to add color on almost every part of the plastic surface. Spray paint allows you to paint your plastic with a great amount of detail and precision, while also allowing you to adjust the amount of paint applied to create different shades. 

Acrylic Paint – Another effective type of paint for plastic, acrylic paint is able to stick on a wide variety of plastic surfaces, and can be applied using paint or an air spray. Another advantage of using acrylics for painting plastic is that you can mix and match different colors and provide your own unique color combinations. When it comes to painting products such as toys and model kits made from a plastic injection mold, acrylic paint is one of the most flexible options. 

Paint Marker – If you are looking for a quick coloring solution for your plastic, using paint markers might be your best option. Paint markers use a similar formula to acrylic paint, which allows them to stick to plastic surfaces. When it comes to providing quick coloring solutions and touch-ups for faded sections in plastic products, using a paint marker is the most efficient option. 

By knowing each type of paint, you will be able to color your plastic products with little trouble. Here are the other steps that you should follow to properly paint your plastic. 


Clean the plastic surface

Before beginning with the plastic painting process, it is important to clean your plastic products first. You can use liquid soap to completely remove any dirt or oils that might be present in the plastic surface. This makes sure your paint and primer would be able to stick without any issues. A great way to clean plastic is by washing them with dishwashing soap, as this can clean up all of the oils and dust present in the plastic. 


Apply primer then paint 

After drying up the cleaned plastic, the next step is to apply a primer coat. Adding a primer coat would help make sure your paint would be able to stick to the plastic and apply a protective coating in case the paint gets damaged. Adding a primer coat would help make sure your paint would be able to stick to the plastic and apply a protective coating in case the paint gets damaged. After applying the primer, you can now start painting. 

When painting plastic, it is important to keep in mind that different types of paint require different approaches. For spray paint, it is important to spray at least 10-12 inches away from the plastic. For acrylic paint, it is important to make sure you are not using a heavy amount of paint for each layer, as that can cause uneven surfaces. The same goes for paint markers, as excessive coloring can lead to drips and uneven surfaces as well. 


Dry and apply finishing touches

The final step of painting plastic is to wait for the paint to dry to apply the top coating. Adding a top coat to painted plastic provides it with a protective layer that would help protect it from dust, liquids, and prevent paint from chipping away. 

Topcoats come in a spray can form, which makes applying it very easy and quick. You can also apply decals and stickers on the surface of the plastic for added aesthetics as well, and then add the topcoat to keep them protected from wear and tear. After letting the top coat dry, you now have the finished product.


Key Takeaway

Painting plastic can be a challenge without the use of the right processes and paint. By following these handy steps, you would be able to add the best and most diverse set of colors to your plastic products. 

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