Is Acrylic Paint Washable? Learn The Basic Techniques And More!

Whether you’re an artist or just trying to color up some canvases, then you know acrylic paint is pure love. But while making your art pieces, the acrylic paint may sometimes smear onto your clothes, fabrics, or even the body.

But that doesn’t mean you’ll stop having a therapeutic session of painting your dreams because acrylic paints are of versatile use.

Is Acrylic Paint Washable? Learn The Basic Techniques And More!

Now that you know acrylic paints are nothing but blessings for an artist or any person, let’s answer your long-awaited question, ‘is acrylic paint washable?’

The perks of acrylic paint are rich pigmentation, easy coloring, and easy wash ability when wet. But, one of the cons is once the paint has dried, it becomes a bit tough to get it off. However, the wash ability depends entirely on the painting surface as well. For instance, although it may be easy to take it off from a wooden piece or your skin, it will be a fuss when taking off fabric or canvas. You will need several paint removal tools and a few techniques to follow, which you’ll know in a short while!

Once you read the article, you’ll know the following-

  • Basics about acrylic paints
  • Can you wash off acrylic paint?
  • Can you wash off acrylic paint from fabric, skin, concrete, and wood?
  • Methods of washing acrylic paint from the respective surfaces

So, without any delay, let’s hop on to it!

Knowing Basics About Acrylic Paints

If you are a beginner out there struggling to know more about acrylics, let me brief the basic features of acrylic paints-

  • It is a water-soluble paint.
  • Non-toxic
  • Dries quickly
  • You can use it for versatile purposes on several surfaces
  • Ideal for both professional and basic use at home.

Can You Wash Off Acrylic Paint?

As I said earlier, it’s a handy job to wash off dried acrylic paint. However, there are tons of options in the paint shops nowadays, offering both washable and non-washable paints. Now, it’s easy to get off the washable paints using soap and water solution only; it’s not easy to get off the non-washable paints. You’ll need extra tools and solutions, but there’s always the risk of damaging the surfaces.

In order to get off the paint from different surfaces, you’ll need a diverse mixture of solutions. For instance, the mix of solutions for getting off the paint will not be the same for both wooden and fabric pieces. Also, if you use the wrong solution, you may even permanently damage the surface.

Does Acrylic Paint Wash Off from Fabric?

Acrylic Paint Wash Off from Fabric

Acrylic paints stick very well to fabric, so it getting it off is quite a troublesome job. If getting off wet acrylic paint from the material may be on the 1st level of difficulty, then taking it off from the fabric once it has dried is a level 6 difficulty task.

Materials you’ll need for washing it off from clothes-

  • Denatured alcohol
  • Cotton ball
  • Washcloth
  • Soapy solution


  • Take your bottle of denatured alcohol and pour a bit on a cotton ball or soft piece of fabric
  • Put the cotton ball soaked in alcohol on the stain and hold it for a minute or so.
  • Rub the alcohol on it in a circular motion until you see the paint coming off.
  • Once the stain has lifted, take the washcloth and soak it in the soapy solution.
  • Wipe off the alcohol from the fabric with the washcloth.

And done! Your cloth will be good as new.

Is Acrylic Paint Washable from Skin?

Acrylic Paint Wash Off from Skin

Acrylic paint is the go-to paint for keen artists, but that does not nullify the fact that it is harmful to the skin. It is advisable not to apply on the skin, especially the sensitive areas, including the face.

When you want to take off acrylic paints from the skin, you must be careful not to apply skin-harming chemicals on it in haste. So, you can use bursts of water along with soap or other non-harmful products for the skin.

Does Acrylic Paint Wash Off from Concrete?

Although acrylic paint has versatile applications, it may not be the topmost choice for painting on concrete surfaces. The reason is that outdoor concrete items of your home would probably have to take a lot of toils and rough usage, but the acrylic paints cannot take that much of blunt and beating. However, if you have already gotten some acrylic paint on your concrete pieces, or if the formerly painted items now only have scuffs of paint on them and you want to get it off, then here’s a process for you-

Acrylic Paint Wash Off from Concrete

Materials you’ll need-

  • Rag
  • Scraper
  • Dishwashing detergent
  • Scrub brush
  • Paint thinner (if a more straightforward method does not work)
  • Muriatic acid (if earlier methods fail)


1. If there are spilled and splashed wet drops of acrylic on the concrete surface, use a rag to wipe off as much paint as possible. If the paint has dried, use a scraper to scrape off as much as the paint you can.

2. Make a soapy solution with 1 gallon of warm water and 2 tbsp. Dishwashing detergent. Take a firm scrub brush and dip it into the solution. Apply it on the stain, rinse, and scrub over the stain until it comes off. After the stain has withdrawn, wash off the area with plenty of water.

3. If the soapy solution doesn’t help you much, it’s time to move on to the following process. You’ll need some paint thinner for this. Take a rag and soak it in paint thinner. Don’t forget to wear gloves, folks! Lay on the rag over the stain and keep it there for a couple of hours. This will loosen the paint from the concrete. After a couple of hours, use bursts of water from a hose source to clean up all the paint thinner. You can also use some soapy solution over it to ensure it’s all clean.

4. Now, if the paint thinner fails you too. It’s time to use the most potent agent, muriatic acid. But before you use muriatic acid, remember to cover yourself up with protective clothing like an apron, gloves, and goggles for the eyes since it is a severely corrosive acid. And also carry out the process in a well-ventilated area.

Look into the instructions on the bottle of the acid for the desired cleaning solution. The ratio of the acid to water is usually one part to ten parts. Once your solution is ready, soak a firm scrub brush into it and scrub off the paint using it. Keep scrubbing till you can see a clear surface free of the stain. After the paint comes off, use a hose or speedy water bursts from a water source to clean up the acid.

I guess that’ll do the work for you. It’s always suggested to start with more accessible methods and then proceed to chemical usage according to the intensity of the task.

Does Acrylic Paint Wash Off from Wood?

Wood seems like a classic surface for acrylic painting. Acrylic paint is exceptionally durable over wooden surfaces and quite flexible in terms of weather and temperature change. Without heavy beating on the painted surface, acrylic paint tends to stay on it for a long time.

Acrylic Paint Wash Off from Wood

If there are wet spills of acrylic on the wooden surface, then taking it off the surface is no big deal. But for dried paint, you can follow the process below to wash it off.

Materials you’ll need-

  • Putty knife/ scraper
  • Rag
  • Alcohol
  • Soapy solution


  1. Take your scraper or putty knife and gently scrape off as much as the paint you can without damaging the wooden surface. Be gentle because you do not want scratch marks over your wooden pieces.
  2. Now it’s time to use some basic rubbing alcohol. Soak a cloth with it and rub the stain with the fabric. Continue the rubbing and rinsing till the paint comes off. Wood can be easily damaged with an intensified alcohol solution, so be careful to use the alcohol-soaked cloth only on the same stain.
  3. After the stain has vanished, soap a clean piece of cloth in a soapy solution and clean up the area to get rid of the alcohol residue.
  4. For the final step, quickly dry off the water and moisture using a dry cloth, placing it over the damp spot.

Do not worry if you have spilled some acrylic paint on several surfaces; the right tools and solutions will take care of it. Besides, if you can’t wash off the acrylic paint on your own and have larger areas to cover, there’s always an option to hire a professional. And before you jump off to using chemicals, make use of the products available at home in the first place, for instance, scrubs, scraper, sponge, towels, etc.

Read More: Is Tempera Paint Washable?

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