Can You Use Washable Paint on Wood?

Many of us have found ourselves drawn to washable paint for DIY projects because of its durability and water-resistant properties.

As we look for versatile paint options suitable for different surfaces, a common question arises: Can you use washable paint on wood? In searching for the answer, we must consider the type of washable paint, the wood surface itself, proper preparation techniques, and the use of protective top coats.

In this article, I will walk through the factors we need to evaluate when using washable paint on wood projects. My goal is to equip us with the knowledge to use washable paint successfully on wooden surfaces so we can take full advantage of its benefits.

Let’s dive in and settle the debate on whether washable paint belongs on wood once and for all.

Is Washable Paint Too Good to Be True?

Many of us are drawn to washable paint for its durability and water resistance. As a versatile and family-friendly paint option, what’s not to love? But as with any DIY product that seems too good to be true, it’s normal to have some scepticism. Can washable paint really live up to its name and be an ideal option for all our projects? Let’s take a closer look at the benefits and limitations of washable paint.

The biggest appeal of washable paint is right there in the name—it’s washability! Washable paints like acrylic and latex are designed to be more resistant to minor scratches, scuffs, and stains. This makes them perfect for high-traffic areas and kid’s spaces where surfaces are bound to get some wear and tear.

Another advantage is that washable paints are water-based, making for an easier clean-up with just soap and water. No need for intense chemicals or solvents. They also tend to have low odour and have fewer fumes, making them safer for indoor use.

However, there are some limitations to be aware of. While washable paints can withstand gentle cleaning, they may not hold up to vigorous scrubbing or power washing. It also takes proper prep and primers to get the most durability out of washable paint. Without a primer, the paint may not properly adhere.

Washable paints alone provide some protection, but a protective top coat like polyurethane is recommended for a smoother, more water-resistant finish. So while washable paint lives up to its name, some extra steps help it reach its full potential. With reasonable expectations and the right prep, washable paint can be an amazing versatile option for your projects!

Can you use washable paint on wood?

Can You Use Washable Paint on Wood?
image source:

This is a common question many of us have when considering washable paint for a wood project. With some key factors in mind,

Yes, you can use Tempera and Crayola washable paints on wood surfaces!

Washable paints like acrylic and latex are designed with durability in mind. Their water-based formulas allow them to better penetrate and adhere to porous surfaces like wood. The right prep work is key, however, to ensure proper bonding and maximum longevity.

Before painting, the wood should be cleaned thoroughly and lightly sanded to remove any coatings or debris. Priming the surface is also highly recommended as it provides an even base layer for the paint to stick to. Primers designed for wood will work best.

When it comes to application, washable paint can be brushed, rolled, or sprayed onto wood. For best results, apply in thin, even coats allowing proper dry time between coats. Leaving the paint to fully cure for at least 24-48 hours is also advised to reach maximum washability.

So while washable paints are suitable for wood, surface prep and application play a big role outcome. As long as the proper steps are taken to clean, prime, and finish the wood properly, you can absolutely take advantage of durable, versatile washable paint for your next wood project.

Should You Avoid Washable Paint on Wood? The Hidden Dangers Revealed

The idea of using washable paint on wood may seem like an easy convenient option. However, without considering a few key factors, this paint-surface pairing could be a recipe for disaster. Or could it? Let’s peel back the layers and reveal the real risks and considerations around using washable paint on wood.

The first potential “danger” involves the type of wood itself. While washable paints like acrylic and latex work great on porous surfaces, not all woods are created equal. The paint absorbs and adheres much better on softwoods like pine as opposed to hardwoods like oak or maple. The dense, slick grains of hardwoods leave less space for paint to grip.

Another concern is wood that is treated or unfinished. Surface treatments like stains, sealants, or laminates can cause bonding issues. And raw, unfinished wood often lacks the proper pH balance for paint to properly cure. Proper sanding and priming are essential to give the paint something to hold on to.

Speaking of prep work, skipping this vital step is one of the biggest pitfalls of painting wood. Even with washable paint, the surface needs to be cleaned, sanded, and primed for the best adhesion. Rushing ahead with paint on dirty or damaged wood will likely end in peeling or cracking down the road.

the lack of a protective top coat detracts from the overall durability and performance of any paint on wood. A sealer like polyurethane provides a barrier against moisture, chemicals, and physical wear and tear. Without it, paint is more prone to staining, fading, and marking.

Can You Use Crayola Washable Paint on Wood?

As a popular brand of kids’ paint, many wonder if Crayola’s washable paints are suitable for wooden crafts and furniture. The short answer is yes—with the right prep, Crayola washable paint can work nicely on wood surfaces.

Crayola makes several types of washable paint including finger paints, tempera paints, and acrylic paints. All are designed to be kid-friendly, non-toxic, and easy to clean up with just soap and water. This makes them ideal for children’s crafts and projects using materials like wood.

When using Crayola paint on wood, there are a few steps to follow:

  • Lightly sand the wood to remove any glossy finish and help the paint adhere
  • Wipe the surface with a clean, damp cloth to remove dust
  • For best results, apply a primer made for wood before painting
  • Brush or roll paint in thin, even coats and allow to fully dry between coats
  • Seal with a non-toxic sealer like Mod Podge for added protection

With proper prep and finishing, Crayola washable paints provide a fun, vibrant, and durable paint option for wooden toys, furniture, signs, crafts and more. The clean-up is hassle-free, and the colours stay vibrant. Follow the preparation steps for a lasting paint job that stands up to kids’ play and washing!

How To Use Tempera Paint On Wood?

Tempera paint is a popular washable paint often used for arts and crafts. Thanks to its versatility, tempera can also be used to paint wooden surfaces like craft sticks, picture frames, and furniture. Here are some tips for properly using tempera paint on wood:

  • Lightly sand the wood with a fine-grit sandpaper. This helps the paint better adhere by scuffing up the surface.
  • Wipe away any dust with a clean, dry cloth. Make sure the surface is free of dirt, grease, or debris.
  • Apply a primer formulated for wood before painting. Primers improve paint adhesion and prevent absorption into the wood grain.
  • When priming and painting, use a high-quality brush to coat the surface smoothly and evenly. Avoid foam brushes which can leave brush marks.
  • Apply tempera in 2-3 thin coats, allowing each coat to fully dry before adding another layer. Thick coats can slide or drip.
  • Let the paint cure for 24-48 hours before use. This ensures the paint hardens to its most durable, washable finish.
  • Seal the paint with a non-toxic sealer like Mod Podge. This adds protection and makes cleaning easier.

Following these tips, you can take advantage of versatile, kid-friendly tempera paint for your next wood project. Just be sure to prep the surface properly so the paint sticks and lasts!

The Secret Upsides of Using Washable Paint on Wood

Using washable paint on wood may seem questionable to some, but the truth is it provides some major upsides for certain projects. What are the secret benefits of this paint-surface combo? Let’s take a look at some of the best uses for washable paint on wood.

One major advantage is washable paint’s durability—wood projects are bound to get some wear and tear, especially in kids’ rooms or play areas. The acrylic binders in washable paints help them stand up to minor scuffs and scrubbing. This makes them ideal for things like:

  • Kids’ furniture and toys – desks, chairs, play kitchens, blocks
  • High-use wood items – utensils, trays, cutting boards, spoons
  • Crafts – birdhouses, containers, decorative signs
  • Accent walls and murals – add colourful flair safely

Washable paint resists staining and cleans up easily with soap and water. Proper prep and top coats provide even more protection. While no surface finish is truly indestructible, washable paint holds up well to normal use.

In addition to durability, washable paint offers low odour, low fumes, and quick dry times – perfect for indoor projects. It provides a vibrant, lasting colour ideal for playful spaces. Just be sure to prime and seal the wood properly for best results.


After reviewing the possibilities and practices for using washable paint on wood, we can draw some conclusions. While no paint is totally indestructible, washable acrylics and latex paints provide durable protection for wood surfaces when used properly.

Following key preparation steps like sanding, cleaning, priming, and sealing enables us to unlock the full benefits of these paints. With reasonable expectations and proper application techniques, we can take advantage of versatile, family-friendly washable paints for all kinds of indoor wood projects.

For best results, be sure to use proper primer and protective top coats. With some thoughtful preparation, washable paint can give beautiful, lasting results on wooden surfaces for us to enjoy.


About Mohammad Sameer

My name is Mohammad Sameer, the founder of SoundproofGears. My hypersensitive hearing turned me into a lifelong seeker of silence. After years of research, I've become an expert on soundproofing techniques and materials. In November 2022 I launched this site to share my knowledge and help others find acoustic sanctuary. About More

Sharing Is Caring: