Mediums For Acrylic Paint

There are mediums out there for just about every need.
Learn more below

There are mediums out there for just about every need. They’re all made of polymer resins exactly like acrylic paint, but they don’t contain pigments. As a result, you can add as much medium as you like to your colour. But remember: The more medium you add, the more you disperse the pigments.


Adding a medium to colour increases its volume and improves its transparency, apart from one or two brands that only increase volume. Although mediums come in medium and high-viscosity variations just like paints, they do not need to be used only with paints of a matching viscosity.

Do I have to mix mediums and paint of matching viscosity?

Be aware that if you mix a medium with a paint of a different viscosity, the medium may thin or thicken the consistency of your paint as a result. Medium-viscosity mediums have a consistency that’s similar to paint in jars.

Glossy medium is one of the most versatile acrylic mediums. When mixed into colours, it makes them more fluid and gives them a shiny finish. It’s milky when wet, but dries completely clear. In addition to giving added transparency to colours, it’s a very good choice for glazes. Like other acrylic products, glossy medium is water-resistant once dry, stays flexible and doesn’t yellow. It also makes an excellent binder for powder pigments to create medium-viscosity paint, and it can be used as a shiny varnish for dry paintings. Avoid re-working a medium that’s been applied and has partially dried; you may end up with white streaks that can’t be removed.

You can use glossy medium for image transfers. First, you need to apply quite a few thin coats to your image (20 or more) until a solid film is created. Then, soak the image in water for a few minutes, and gently scrape the paper fibres from the back. Let it dry, and use the same glossy medium as a glue to affix the image to the surface you are using for your project.

Glossy medium can also function as glue on a variety of surfaces, as a fixative for crayon or pastel (diluted half-and-half with distilled water and misted using a sprayer or airbrush,) or as a colourless base coat to replace gesso. For serigraphy, you can use it to make permanent water-resistant masks. Glossy medium can be used instead of Mod Podge when you’re covering objects with fine paper, and as a final varnish. It’s just as transparent, but more water-resistant than Mod Podge once dry.