How Long Does Puffy Paint Take to Dry?

Puffy paint is used widely in various forms of Art & Crafts. It is relatively cheap to make or buy; it can be used on a variety of surfaces and will enable those using the substance to express their own creative flare.

Generally, puffy paint when used thinly on paper will take between 4-6 hours to dry. Using thicker layers may increase the drying time to 6-8 hours. If applying the paint to fabric, the process may take up to 72 hours to be completely solidified, but we can reduce the amount of time by having a basic understanding of the science behind it and how paint dries. 

The aim of this article is to give you an understanding of ‘Puffy Paint’, tips in its applications and general questions, so let’s get started!

What Is Puffy Paint?

Puffy paint is quite easy to make and is often referred to as homemade “paint”. All that is required to make it is three common ingredients.  Those ingredients are white glue, shaving cream or foam and food coloring. Using a standard measuring cup (250ml) is best. White glue and shaving cream or foam should be of equal proportions. For example 100ml each or 10 standard dessert spoons. The amount of food color to be used will depend on the lightness or darkness of the desired color. Stirring or mixing the ingredients for a few minutes will create a smoother texture and be easier to apply on to your chosen surface. The whole process of making the paint can be completed in around five minutes. 

Puffy Paint Dry Time

Drying time of the paint will vary depending on the surface it is being applied to and the thickness of which is used. Puffy paint works on all types of surfaces, including brick, canvas, fabric, glass, paper, plastic and wood. It is most commonly used on fabrics. 

Temperature is the most important factor for the paint to dry. Paint always dries faster in hot temperatures. The hotter the temperature, the faster the paint will dry. This is due to the evaporation of moisture and water content of the paint. 

Ventilation or the movement of air will also affect the drying process, the better (faster) ventilation, the quicker the evaporation process will take. Higher humidity will also affect the drying time. The higher the humidity, the longer it will take for the paint to dry.

Ideally, we require a balance between temperature and humidity. If the temperature is too hot, it may cause a bubble layer within the paint or cause the paint to crack. We don’t want this to occur as it will result in loss of attractiveness. 

Depending on the object and type of surface you are applying the paint to, placing the painted object in the sun for 20-30 minutes will normally be enough for it to dry. 

How to Make Puffy Paint Dry Faster?

Before, we become disheartened or start to lose interest in using puffy paint, we can use some basic tips to help us along the way.

To apply the paint, use a thin paintbrush or placing the puffy paint into a bottle with a thin nozzle is the best. Thinner is better than thicker and is by far the superior method of application. Avoid the temptation of using too much paint at once as this will delay the drying process. You don’t need to wait for the paint to dry completely to apply additional layers. 

As mentioned earlier, good ventilation will accelerate the drying time. Opening of windows if the temperature is warm to hot is good, however we can also use a desk or table fan to assist us. This will also help in relation to humidity, 

Children are the most common users of puffy paint and can become impatient in waiting for the paint to dry, especially if they are using fabrics for their work. Therefore to quicken the process we can use a hair dryer, Concentrate on the area which is taking too long to dry and keep the spout of the dryer approximately 2 inches from the surface. 

Keep the dryer moving across the surface rather than directly on to the main area you are trying to dry more quickly. This will enable all wet areas to dry more evenly. If wanting to apply more layers of paint I would definitely suggest using the hair dryer method to speed up the process.

If you’re planning to paint during winter, then try using a heater to keep your environment at a more favorable temperature. Ah-ha ‘Heat” I hear you cry will speed up the drying process and indeed it will.  

It is strongly advised that an adult or older person takes control if planning to use the following methods to quicken the drying process. Depending on the object you have used for your project, you can use a regular oven to assist. Set the temperature to 150 degrees Fahrenheit and bake it for 2-4  minutes. The amount of time taken will depend on the thickness of the paint due to the liquid content. Less liquid equals quicker drying time. 

Another alternative to using an oven is to use an iron on fabric surfaces. If you choose this option, you will need to apply the hot iron to the painted section without touching the paint. Wait around 24 hours after application of the paint before using an iron. Turn the garment inside out and iron over the area for 3-5 minutes. Of course the cheapest method to dry paint is the Sun.

Puffy Paint Drying Tips

So we now have a fairly good understanding of puffy paint, so we can plan ahead before we start using it.

Try to have a stable temperature and conditions.

Don’t apply thick coats of paint as this will prolong the drying process and may also look unattractive. This is especially important when  applying the paint to canvas, fabric, or wood,

As mentioned earlier if you are planning to use an oven to assist you, do not leave the item unattended whilst in the oven as the fabric and paint can both catch on fire. 

If using a hair-dryer, please maintain a minimum distance of 2 inches from the nozzle to your painted areas. 

When planning your project, keep the drying process in mind. The paper will dry much quicker than other surfaces and may not need the use of the some of the processes mentioned to achieve a quicker drying time, sunlight and a fan should suffice when using paper, 

We hope to have covered most of the areas associated with making, using and drying puffy paint so now it is time to put your artistic creativity to work.