Resin is perfect for colouring and is therefore very popular with artists, DIY enthusiasts and DIY enthusiasts. Of course, the normally transparent resin is also often used in its crystal clear, colourless form, e.g. for casting various objects or epoxy tables. For many projects, however, coloured casting resin is required and here too the material proves its incredible flexibility. With this article we help you to find the right epoxy resin colour for your project.
- 1 Which Colour Media can I use to colour Resin?
- 2 Coloring Epoxy Resin: Tips & Tricks
- 3 How to color Resin – Tutorial for coloring Resin
- 4 Epoxy Resin Color: All Colour Media in Portrait
- 5 Resin colors not suitable for Epoxy Resin
- 6 The most frequently asked Questions about colouring of Epoxy Resin
Which Colour Media can I use to colour Resin?
Many, but not all, of the numerous color media available on the market are suitable for coloring epoxy. For example, the mixing ratio of the resin changes if the chosen colour contains oil or water. If this is not taken into account, it can happen that the resin has dull spots or even does not harden completely. In addition, not all colours have sufficient light resistance.
However, there are different colour media that are very suitable for mixing with epoxy resin:
Colour Pigments for Epoxy Resin
With colour pigments, the colouring of casting resin is very easy. In addition, this variant is very economical, as only a small quantity of high-quality pigments is needed to colour the resin.
Often the colour pigments are available in powder form. As these often do not dissolve completely in the resin, exciting, slightly granular effects can be created.
Liquid Epoxy Resin Dye
On the market you can find some colour media that have been specially developed for working with epoxy resin. These are available in liquid or paste form. Such inks are naturally ideal for colouring resin. A very productive epoxy paint of highest quality is offered e.g. by the manufacturer ArtResin with its ResinTint paints.
Due to the similar composition these two components can be mixed very well. Epoxy resin contains polymers – epoxy paints are usually based on prepolymers.
Coloring Epoxy Resin: Tips & Tricks
If a color medium is added, the mixing ratio between resin and hardener changes, which can lead to unforeseen problems. Therefore some things should be considered:
- The chosen colours should be concentrated or highly pigmented to change the mixing ratio as little as possible.
- To test whether the colour and its reaction with the resin meets your expectations, you should first mix a small amount of the two components and see the result.
- Try to get a feeling for the properties of the pure epoxy resin and its handling. If you know how the resin reacts when uncoloured it is easier to estimate how it might react in combination with the colour medium.
- The paints used should not contain water, as this can have a very negative effect on the mixing ratio between resin and hardener.
- When selecting the colour, make sure that it is sufficiently lightfast. If you create a workpiece made of transparent epoxy resin, it is hardly noticeable if the resin turns yellow over time due to the influence of UV radiation. With coloured resin, however, the fading of the colour tone is clearly visible.
How to color Resin – Tutorial for coloring Resin
- When working with epoxy, the time factor is of great importance, as the resin cures very quickly during application. Therefore, you should have all necessary materials ready to hand at your workplace.
- Protect your workplace from possible splashes, e.g. with plastic sheeting.
- The protection of your health has the highest priority. Wear protective goggles, a breathing mask and nitrile gloves when working with epoxy resin.
- First mix resin and hardener thoroughly in the mixing ratio recommended by the manufacturer.
- Once you have mixed the two components carefully, it is time to add the paint. Add a small amount of paint concentrate or pigments to the mixture and mix well. Repeat this process until you have achieved the desired shade.
- As a basic principle you can remember: In order not to influence the mixing ratio negatively and thus impair the hardening, the proportion of the colour should not be higher than 5%.
Epoxy Resin Color: All Colour Media in Portrait
The following liquid or pasty paint media are very suitable for working with epoxy resin.
Liquid or Pigment Paste
Special Epoxy Dye
As already mentioned, there are paints on the market that have been specially developed for use with epoxy resin. We have already discussed their advantages and the most well-known product on the market, ResinTint from ArtResin, in more detail above.
Airbrush paint is also very well suited for use with resin. With this paint medium, however, you should make sure that the paint concentration contained in the product is sufficiently high. This is usually the case with higher quality paints. An airbrush color from the Schmincke company is Aero Color, which is very well proven for working with resin.
Due to the fact that ink has an extremely high pigmentation and concentration, this colour medium is very productive. Just a few drops are sufficient to colour synthetic resin. This applies both to alcoholic inks and to those based on water as a solvent.
A disadvantage of ink as a colour medium is, however, that it is not particularly light-resistant. Therefore it is rather unsuitable for workpieces that are frequently exposed to UV light.
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Colour Pigments and Additives in Powder Form
Colour pigments are colour powders that can be produced either naturally or synthetically. Examples of natural, inorganic pigments are soils or minerals. These are dried and then finely ground. Many different processes are used in the production of synthetic color pigments.
In the past, natural color pigments were generally used. However, the sources for these gradually dried up, so they were increasingly replaced by synthetic alternatives. In addition, the natural colour pigments were sometimes very toxic because they contained heavy metal compounds. Many of them were therefore classified as very hazardous to health and gradually disappeared from the market.
Pigments are available in the most diverse variations. Everything from matt to metallic shine can be found on the market. When buying colour pigments you should use a product from established manufacturers. Only these offer a sufficiently high quality and light resistance, so that your epoxy resin artwork still shines in intense colours after a few weeks or months and does not fade.
Take care of your health and always wear a respirator when working with pigments so that you do not inhale the fine colour particles.
Glitter powder turns your epoxy resin works into real eye-catchers. They do not colour the resin directly, but provide a real wow-effect with effects ranging from metallic shine to holographic glitter.
Even cast resin artworks containing small luminous pigments are real eye-catchers. Here you have the choice between fluorescent luminescent particles, which are “charged” by UV light and then glow in the dark, or pigments that begin to glitter under black light.
Resin colors not suitable for Epoxy Resin
Coloring Epoxy Resin with Acrylic Paint
Acrylic paint consists of a variety of ingredients such as water, binding agents, colour pigments and often other additives to make the paint last longer. Especially the high water content and also other additives can have a negative influence on the result of your work, e.g. by streaks or a matt surface.
Watercolours and watercolours have a very low pigmentation. This means that only in very large quantities would they actually colour the resin. In addition, the components epoxy resin – watercolour/watercolour are very difficult to mix.
Oil paint contains lipids through the oil it contains, which do not combine with the resin. When these two components are combined, the formation of lumps is practically pre-programmed.
The most frequently asked Questions about colouring of Epoxy Resin
Painting Epoxy Resin in colour – is that possible?
Epoxy resin can also be painted in colour. However, you should use car paint or another high-quality two-component paint for this purpose. Even though it is generally most effective to colour the resin directly during the casting process, it may make sense to paint it afterwards. This is the case, for example, when building resin tables or aquariums/terrariums.
How heat resistant is coloured Epoxy Resin?
The casting resins, which are usually commercially available, usually have a heat resistance between 70° C. and 100° C. If the resin is coloured, it is possible that the temperature resistance will decrease. Therefore, it is common practice, especially for epoxy tables, to apply a layer of clear epoxy resin afterwards.
What is Casting Resin used for colouring?
Casting resin is a low viscosity resin, which you can also colour with the colours presented above.
How to dye UV Resin?
For UV resin the same inks as for normal epoxy resin or laminating resin can be used. Here, too, only a few concentrated colour concentrates or colour pigments should be used.