Is Acrylic Leather Paint Waterproof? Everything You Need to Know

Acrylic leather paints have become incredibly popular in recent years for people looking to add a bit of flair to their leather products. Whether you’re looking to paint a leather jacket, a pair of boots, or simply spruce up an old leather wallet, acrylic leather paints are an ideal choice. One of the most crucial questions people ask when considering acrylic leather paints is whether they are waterproof. The short answer is yes; acrylic leather paints are highly water-resistant, but there’s more to it than that.

Waterproofing is a crucial factor to consider when choosing any kind of leather paint. Whether you’re painting for aesthetic purposes or for practical reasons such as protecting your leather products from the harsh elements, you need something that can repel water effectively. Acrylic leather paints have a unique property that makes them highly water-resistant, which means they’re an excellent choice for people in harsh, rainy, or humid environments. In this article, we delve deeper into the benefits of using acrylic leather paint and how it compares to other types of leather paints in terms of waterproofing.

Acrylic leather paint has been on the market for a long time, but a lot of people still have questions about this type of paint and how it works. In this article, we aim to provide you with a comprehensive guide on everything you need to know about acrylic leather paint and waterproofing. We’ll look at how acrylic leather paint compares to other types of leather paints, what makes them waterproof in the first place, and how to apply them effectively. Whether you’re a seasoned leather painter or just starting, this article will help you understand the benefits of using acrylic leather paint and how they can help you protect your leather products from the elements.

Types of Leather Paints

Leather paints come in different types, which offer varying degrees of durability and waterproofness. If you’re looking to paint a leather item, it’s essential to understand the types of leather paints available in the market today.

  • Acrylic Leather Paint: Acrylic leather paint is a popular type of leather paint due to its water-based formula, making it easy to clean up with water. However, it would help if you allowed it to dry thoroughly before exposing it to water, as it might not be waterproof immediately. Nevertheless, when applied correctly and allowed to dry thoroughly, acrylic leather paint can be as durable and waterproof as any other type of leather paint.
  • Solvent-based Leather Paint: Solvent-based leather paint is a type of leather paint that does not dissolve in water. Instead, it requires a solvent such as alcohol or turpentine to clean up. This type of paint is usually more water-resistant than acrylic leather paint, making it ideal for outdoor leather items exposed to rain. However, it is essential to work in a well-ventilated space when using solvent-based leather paint.
  • Oil-based Leather Paint: Oil-based leather paint is usually the most durable and waterproof type of leather paint. However, it requires solvents like turpentine for clean-up and is not as easy to work with as other types of leather paints. Additionally, oil-based leather paint takes more time to dry than other types of leather paint, which can be a disadvantage to some people.


When it comes to choosing the type of leather paint, there are several factors to consider, including the nature of the leather, the intended use of the item, and the level of durability and waterproofness required. Acrylic leather paint is a great option for most DIY projects and is usually more affordable and easy to use. However, if you’re looking for highly durable and waterproof results, especially for outdoor leather items, solvent-based or oil-based leather paint might be the best option.

Type of Leather Paint Waterproofness Durability
Acrylic Leather Paint Requires time to dry and cure to be waterproof Durable
Solvent-based Leather Paint More water-resistant than acrylic leather paint Durable
Oil-based Leather Paint Highly waterproof Highly durable

Ultimately, the choice of leather paint depends on the specific needs of your project and what you’re trying to achieve. With the right techniques, tools, and materials, you can create a beautifully painted, durable, and waterproof leather item.

How Waterproofing Works

Waterproofing is the process of making a material impermeable to water. Different materials such as fabrics, woods, and leathers can be waterproofed through different techniques, depending on the intended use. In the case of acrylic leather paint, the waterproofing process is crucial to ensure that the leather remains resistant to water, spills, and scratches. Here are some of the ways waterproofing works:

  • Coating – One of the most common ways to waterproof leather is through coating. A coating is applied over the surface of the leather to create a barrier and prevent water from penetrating and damaging the material. Coating can be done with different materials like wax, oil, or synthetic polymers, depending on the purpose of the leather.
  • Spraying – Another way to waterproof leather is through spraying. This technique involves applying a waterproofing spray that contains chemicals to create a protective layer over the surface of the leather. Spraying is best for large leather items like jackets, bags, and furniture.
  • Soaking – Soaking is a technique used for waterproofing leather shoes. The shoes are soaked in a solution that contains waterproofing agents that penetrate the leather and create a barrier. This barrier prevents water from seeping into the shoes and causing damage.

Waterproofing is an essential process that ensures the durability and longevity of leather products. It provides resistance to water, spills, and scratches, making the material suitable for different applications. Apart from the techniques mentioned above, there are other ways to waterproof leather, such as using tapes, glues, and sealants.

When it comes to acrylic leather paint, the principle is the same. The paint creates a protective layer over the surface of the leather, preventing water and other liquids from penetrating the material. However, it is essential to note that the effectiveness of the waterproofing will depend on the quality of the acrylic leather paint used, the application process, and the frequency of use.

Factors affecting the effectiveness of acrylic leather paint waterproofing
The quality of the acrylic leather paint used for waterproofing
The application process of the acrylic leather paint
The frequency of use of the leather item

To ensure the long-lasting waterproofing of a leather item, it is crucial to choose the right type of leather paint and follow the correct application process. Proper maintenance and cleaning of the leather item can also help prolong its waterproofing capabilities.

Acrylic Paint and Leather Compatibility

Acrylic leather paint has become a popular choice for DIY enthusiasts for its versatility and ease of use. Acrylic paint is a water-based paint that contains resin in its formula, which makes it durable, flexible, and waterproof when it dries. However, not all acrylic paint is made to be used on leather, as leather is less absorbent than other materials, and its surface needs to be prepared before applying the paint.

  • Acrylic paints that are formulated for leather have a higher concentration of pigment and a thinner consistency compared to regular acrylic paint. This allows the paint to penetrate the leather surface, adhere better, and produce a vibrant, opaque color.
  • Acrylic leather paint is also designed to be flexible to prevent cracking and peeling when the leather is flexed or stretched. Leather can expand and contract depending on the temperature and humidity, and a rigid paint can cause it to crack or flake.
  • It is recommended to use only high-quality acrylic leather paint from reputable brands to ensure the best results and durability. Cheap or low-quality paints may contain harmful chemicals, cause discoloration or fading, or rub off easily.

Before painting leather with acrylic paint, it’s crucial to clean and prepare the surface thoroughly. Leather needs to be deglazed or roughened with sandpaper or a special deglazing solution to remove the shiny finish and allow the paint to stick better. The leather also needs to be free of dust, dirt, or grease, which can interfere with the adhesion.

Another factor to consider when painting leather with acrylic paint is the colorfastness. Some acrylic paints may fade or bleed when exposed to sunlight, heat, or water. For this reason, it’s recommended to test the paint on a small area first and observe any changes before applying it to the whole surface.

Pros Cons
– Waterproof when dry – May require surface preparation
– Durable and flexible – May fade or bleed in some conditions
– Vibrant and opaque colors – Requires high-quality paint for best results>

In conclusion, acrylic leather paint can be a great option for waterproofing and restoring leather items such as shoes, bags, jackets, or furniture. However, it’s essential to choose the right paint and prepare the surface correctly to ensure a lasting and attractive result. When done correctly, acrylic paint can add a new life to worn-out leather and create a custom look that suits any style and preference.

Choosing the Right Paint for Your Project

When it comes to painting leather with acrylic paints, one of the most common questions is whether or not acrylic leather paint is waterproof. While many acrylic paints are water-resistant, the answer is not as straightforward as a simple yes or no. In order to determine whether or not your acrylic leather paint is waterproof, it’s important to consider a few key factors.

  • The type of leather you’re painting
  • The quality and brand of paint you’re using
  • The application method

The type of leather you’re working with can greatly impact the effectiveness of your acrylic paint. For example, some types of leather are more porous than others, meaning that the paint may not adhere as well or may not provide as much protection against water. Additionally, lower quality or older leather may be more prone to water damage, which could impact the effectiveness of the paint.

When choosing a paint, it’s important to invest in a high-quality brand that is specifically designed for use on leather. Cheaper paints may not adhere well or may crack and peel over time, leaving your leather vulnerable to water damage. Look for a paint that has a good reputation for durability and water resistance.

The application method can also impact the effectiveness of your acrylic leather paint. If you are using a spray paint, you may need to apply multiple coats to ensure that the surface is fully covered and protected. Brush-on paints may require more precision and care to ensure that the paint is applied evenly and thoroughly.

Finally, if you’re still unsure about whether or not your acrylic leather paint is waterproof, consider testing it on a small, inconspicuous area of your project before applying it more broadly. This can help you determine whether or not the paint adheres well and provides adequate protection against water.

In summary, while acrylic leather paint can be water-resistant, there are several factors that can impact its effectiveness. When choosing a paint, invest in a high-quality brand specifically designed for use on leather and consider the type of leather you’re working with, the application method, and whether or not to perform a test in an inconspicuous area of your project. By taking these steps, you can ensure that your painted leather projects are both beautiful and durable.

Preparing Leather for Paint Application

Acrylic leather paint is a versatile and durable material that can be used to decorate and revitalize leather products. However, before you start painting, it’s crucial to make sure that the leather is free from dust, dirt, and oils that can inhibit adhesion and prevent the paint from sticking properly.

  • Step 1: Clean the leather thoroughly with a mild soap and water solution. Avoid using harsh or abrasive cleaners, which can damage the leather and make it harder for the paint to adhere. Rinse the leather thoroughly and let it air dry.
  • Step 2: Sand the leather lightly with fine-grit sandpaper. This will help to create a rough surface that the paint can grip onto. Be gentle and don’t oversand, as this can cause the leather to become too soft and prone to tearing.
  • Step 3: Apply a leather deglazer or acetone to remove any remaining oils or waxes from the leather surface. This will help to ensure that the paint adheres correctly. Work in small sections, applying the deglazer with a clean cloth and rubbing gently until the surface is clean and dry.

After following these steps, the leather should be ready for paint application. However, it’s always a good idea to do a small test patch first to make sure that the paint adheres properly and looks the way you want it to.

In addition to preparing the surface of the leather, it’s also important to choose the right type of acrylic leather paint for your project. Some paints are formulated specifically for certain types of leather, such as suede or nubuck, while others are more versatile. Always read the product label carefully and choose a paint that is suitable for your specific needs.

Tip: Before painting, it’s a good idea to tape off any areas that you don’t want to get paint on, such as zippers, buckles, or other hardware. This will help to keep your project looking neat and professional.

How to Apply Acrylic Leather Paint

Acrylic leather paint is an excellent option for those who want to refurbish their leather products and give them a new life. This type of paint is easy to use and offers a variety of possibilities due to its versatility. Applying acrylic leather paint can be challenging for beginners if they don’t know how to do it correctly. However, with the right tools, preparation, and techniques, applying acrylic leather paint can be a simple task. Here’s a guide on how to apply acrylic leather paint:

  • Clean the leather surface: Before starting the painting process, make sure the leather surface is clean and free of any dirt, dust, or oil residues. Use a soft cloth or sponge with a leather cleaner to clean the leather surface thoroughly. Allow it to dry completely.
  • Prepare the leather surface: After cleaning the leather surface, use a sandpaper grit to scuff the leather surface lightly. This process will help the acrylic leather paint adhere better to the leather surface. Make sure to remove any sandpaper debris after scuffing the surface.
  • Apply the first coat: It’s crucial to apply the acrylic leather paint thinly to the leather surface. Use a sponge or a brush to apply the paint in a smooth and even coat. Allow the surface to dry completely before applying the second coat. Do not over-saturate the surface with the paint as it will result in the surface flaking off after drying.
  • Apply subsequent coats: After the first coat has dried, apply a second and third coat thinly in the same manner as the first coat. Allow each coat to dry completely before applying another coat. The thickness of the paint coats will depend on the color and opacity you’re trying to achieve.
  • Finish with sealant: Once all the paint coats have dried, apply a sealant to the leather surface. The sealant serves to protect the paint and the leather surface from scratches and helps to extend the life of the paint. Use a sponge or brush to apply the sealant thinly, and allow it to dry completely before using the leather product.
  • Allow the paint to cure: After applying the sealant, let the paint cure for 2-3 days before using the leather product to ensure that the paint does not flake or peel after use.

By following these steps, you’ll be able to apply acrylic leather paint correctly and achieve the desired results on your leather products. Don’t forget to invest in high-quality acrylic leather paint and tools for proper application.

For more advanced techniques and tips, you can search online for tutorials and videos created by experts in this field. Enjoy your new, personalized leather products!

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Painting Leather

Leather is a popular and durable material that can be used for a variety of purposes such as furniture, clothing, and accessories. However, when it comes to painting leather, there are several mistakes that often occur that can lead to unsatisfactory results. Below are some common mistakes to avoid when painting leather:

  • Not Prepping the Leather: One of the most important steps when painting leather is proper prep work. Skipping this step can lead to flaking or peeling paint. Make sure to clean and dry the leather thoroughly before painting.
  • Not Using the Right Paint: Using the wrong type of paint can also result in peeling or cracking. Make sure to use acrylic leather paint specifically designed for use on leather.
  • Not Applying Paint Evenly: Applying paint too thick or too thin can cause uneven coverage and streaks. Make sure to apply paint in thin, even layers for the best results.

By avoiding these common mistakes, you can achieve a beautiful and long-lasting paint job on your leather items.

Can Acrylic Leather Paint be Waterproof?

One common question that arises when it comes to painting leather is whether acrylic leather paint is waterproof. The answer is that it can be waterproof to some extent, but it ultimately depends on the type of leather and how you apply the paint.

Acrylic leather paint is water-resistant, which means that it can withstand light moisture and splashes without being damaged. However, it is not completely waterproof, which means that if the leather is completely submerged in water or exposed to heavy rain, the paint may start to peel or wash away.

To improve the waterproofness of acrylic leather paint, you can apply a waterproofing spray or sealant after the paint has dried. This will provide an extra layer of protection against moisture and can extend the life of your paint job.

How to Waterproof Leather Paint

If you want to ensure that your leather paint job is completely waterproof, there are a few steps you can take.

Step Description
Step 1 Clean and dry the leather thoroughly before painting.
Step 2 Apply acrylic leather paint in thin, even layers. Allow each layer to dry completely before adding another layer.
Step 3 Apply a waterproofing spray or sealant after the paint has dried. Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.

By following these steps, you can ensure that your leather items are fully waterproof and protected from moisture and other environmental factors.

FAQs About Acrylic Leather Paint Waterproof

1. Is acrylic leather paint waterproof?

Yes, acrylic leather paint is waterproof.

2. How long does it take for acrylic leather paint to dry?

It takes about 30 minutes for the paint to dry, but it needs at least 24 hours to fully cure.

3. Can I use acrylic leather paint on furniture?

Yes, you can use acrylic leather paint on furniture.

4. Does acrylic leather paint crack or peel over time?

If the surface it is applied to is properly prepared and cleaned, acrylic leather paint should not crack or peel over time.

5. Is acrylic leather paint easy to apply?

Yes, acrylic leather paint is easy to apply. You can use a brush or a sponge to apply the paint to your leather.

6. Can I use acrylic leather paint on other surfaces?

Acrylic leather paint is specifically designed for leather, but it can also be used on other surfaces such as vinyl or plastic.

7. Can acrylic leather paint be removed once it’s dried?

Once acrylic leather paint has dried, it is very difficult to remove. It’s important to clean up any spills or mistakes before the paint dries.

Closing Thoughts

Thanks for taking the time to read about acrylic leather paint waterproof! Now that you know more about this versatile and waterproof paint, you can confidently create your own beautiful and long-lasting leather projects. Be sure to come back for more information and tips on other DIY projects.