Can You Use Acrylic Paint on Shoes?

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Maybe you’ve bought a shoe or you have been using a shoe for many days, but somehow its design is not of your choice or it is not looking good to you anymore. So, you decide to paint on it to give it a new look, your personal touch! But can you use acrylic paint on shoes?

can you use acrylic paint on shoes
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You can use acrylic paint on shoes. It has a wide range of colors and it is very good to paint on a synthetic leather shoe. It dries quickly and is water-soluble. But it becomes water-resistant when it dries up.

What Paint to Use on Shoes?

There are a few different types of paints that will work for shoes. Among them, which paint will suit the shoe depends on the material used to craft the shoe.

For leather or vinyl shoes, you should select spray paint. Spray paints generally will dry better on leather and vinyl because those materials usually have a lustrous finish. Additionally, you could use leather paint on leather and vinyl shoes, too. Leather paints are flexible with a good range of colors. Simultaneously, it is cheap!

Again, use fabric paint for cloth shoes. It works best on cloth shoes because the paint meshes well with that distinctive material. Fabric paint is designed to be flexible. As a result, this kind of paint will prevent shoes from cracking. But you need to be careful about not letting the color go wet with soapy water immediately so that the color may not fade.

Acrylic paint has comparatively the largest variety of colors available as well as is the least expensive. Acrylic paints are designed to adhere to leather products, including shoes.

You can get them at your nearby craft store. These paints easily go on with a brush and give a smooth and lasting finish. Also, you can spray paint bought from a hardware store. To minimize over-spraying, choose a ‘spray can’ with the smallest nozzle possible.

Can You Use Acrylic Paint on Shoes?

In order to paint your shoes, you can definitely use acrylic paint as it is one of the best paints. It will be more beneficial than most other paints.

But keep one thing in mind, if acrylic paint is not made with thin layers, the shoe may crack soon after painting. To get rid of this problem, use acrylic paint thinner, a same material used with airbrushing, as thin layers are the key to prevent cracking and getting a good outcome.

Try to use paint of a single brand to apply to the shoe instead of mixing multiple brands. While drying, avoid heat and take care of the angle at which you are applying paint.

If you make a careful use of acrylic paint, you will get a good finishing with your shoe painting!

Can You Use Acrylic Paint on Leather Shoes?

Spray paint and leather paint are the most suitable paints to use on leather shoes, but you can obviously use acrylic paint on such surfaces. Hence, most leather paints are acrylic-based. But you must water down the paint before using it as acrylic paints are thicker than leather paint. Otherwise, it may cause cracking to the shoe after just a few days.

Can You Use Acrylic Paint on Fabric Shoes?

I have already said that for painting on fabric shoes you should select fabric paint. But acrylic paint can be used for painting fabric shoes. Actually, fabric paint is a type of acrylic paint made specifically for painting on fabric materials.

You can opt to create a fabric paint using a textile medium. Select acrylic paint colors that you like and add the textile medium to them. The ratio for mixing should be 1 part acrylic paint to 2 parts textile medium. The resulting paint is very thin and good to paint with!

‌Can You Use Acrylic Paint on Air Force 1?

Yes, acrylic paint can be used to paint on Air Force 1.

Air Force 1 is a basketball shoe of the worldwide renowned company Nike. It was designed by Bruce Kilgore. Since its introduction in 1982, it has gained fame as a fashion staple.

This shoe has an all-leather upper. It is treated with a waxy protective coating and must be removed for painting. Otherwise, the paint is not going to penetrate the leather. To remove that part, you can use acetone or isopropyl alcohol.

After preparing the shoe for painting, start painting with acrylic leather paint. Do the work of painting algorithmically. In each step, paint only one layer and let it dry first before moving on to the next layer. This way, completing the work may take time but it will touch the perfection!

If there is a part you are not painting now or you want to make a straight line, you can use painters’ tape to tape off that part.

When the painting is finished, wait at least a day and apply acrylic sealant according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Can You Use Acrylic Paint on Vans?

Vans shoe is a very popular product of an American skateboarding shoe manufacturing company, Vans. This kind of shoe is a favorite to many non-skaters for its stylish look.

Vans shoes’ signature ingredient is vulcanized rubber construction. This feature is lauded by skaters for its superior grip and support while skating.

Since these shoes are vulcanized, they can be easily painted on. You can use acrylic leather paint mixed with fabric additive (liquid, paint-like material that helps your primers and paints better adhere to Vans) in order to make a primer.

How to Paint Shoes with Acrylic Paint?

Painting shoes with acrylic paint is an awesome way to give your shoes a new life. To have a good result, you should follow the following steps.

Ingredients needed are:

  • A pair of shoes,
  • Paint,
  • Paintbrushes,
  • Acetone.

Step 01: At first, remove the laces from the shoes to avoid them getting painted on.

Step 02: Use acetone to clean up the shoes and prepare for painting. Handily soak a cotton ball with acetone and rub it all over the shoe surface.

Step 03: Now, decide the design for the painting. If you want to make an elaborate painting, then sketch out your ideas on paper. You can use computer programs such as Adobe Photoshop to create a 3D design in advance.

Step 04: Sketch your design on the shoes’ surface in pencil.

Step 05: Try to find a flat, steady table and cover your workspace with newspaper or craft paper.

Step 06: Tape off the unnecessary places where you are not going to paint.

Step 07: Make use of marking pens to outline your designs. You can also add details like- fan art, quotes, graffiti, poetry, or anything you like.

Step 08: As you are using acrylic paint, dip your brush into the paint. Try with short strokes and keep refilling your brush until you no longer see any part of the shoes’ original surface.

Step 09: As soon as you are finished with the painting, let the shoe dry before moving on to further steps.  A hair dryer or heated drying tool is usually recommended for drying. Generally, you may need to dry it for almost 24 hours.

Step 10: Grab the ends of each piece of tape you put before painting. To do so, gently pressurize as long as it does not pull away from the shoe. Continue until you have removed all the pieces of tapes. You may use metal tweezers to carefully remove the small pieces if you are not capable of safely removing them.

See how to paint shoes with acrylic paint

How to Seal Acrylic Paint on Shoes?

When you are done with painting and drying, you are eligible to wear your shoes. But it is recommended that you should apply a protective finish. If you do not seal the paint, the color may not stick to the shoe and get spoilt even by gentle scratches. It will prevent your design from getting damaged by water.

The following steps will illustrate how you can seal acrylic paint on shoes.

Step 01: Get Angelus Matte Acrylic Finisher, the best ingredient for this work. Alternately, you may try Mod Podge Outdoor, Polyurethane, and other durable outdoor sealants which are suitable for painted surfaces.

It can be used also for removing the mistakes you made while painting. But be cautious about not spoiling the good part while doing this. So, use tape to cover the good surrounding areas.

Step 02: Mix finisher with duller (a material that makes the matte finisher less shiny). The amount of duller should not be excessive because too much of it will prevent the matte from protecting your shoes.

Step 03: Dab the mixture on the painted area with a clean piece of paper towel.

Step 04: Dry it. It should take about 30 seconds.

Step 05: Apply the same process thrice to complete sealing your paint.

Final Thoughts

Painting is always a thing of joy. Painting on a shoe makes a shoe more good-looking and attractive as well as depicts your creative identity.

But for painting, acrylic paints are very versatile. It can be used for painting different kinds of shoes and it offers a wide range of colors and one becomes able to make a colorful work.