Time-saving Tips: 6 Best Spray Paint for Styrofoam is Here

Best Spray Paint for Styrofoam

Are you a DIY projects lover? When it comes to cutting off money without compromising beauty for home-based projects, Styrofoam is an excellent choice. You can use this closed-cell extruded polystyrene foam for various purposes, from building insulation to water barriers to thermal insulation.

Using the correct paint and following the ideal method is crucial to perfecting your job. Apart from using normal paint, people often ask: can I use spray paint on Styrofoam? Yes, you can but choosing the best spray paint for Styrofoam is essential because not all will give a precise result.

I will walk you through some top-quality spray paints for Styrofoam in this write-up. So keep reading until I finish!

What Is Styrofoam?

Styrofoam is also known as Extruded polystyrene (XPS), which is made from styrene material. In order to make Styrofoam, a polymerization is followed.

At first, manufacturers purify the styrene material and transform it into polystyrene. Then, they include a hydrofluorocarbon agent in their making process.

Next, both materials will be extruded from each other and let form a foam board under heavy pressure.

We use Styrofoam for various purposes, such as insulating coolers, cold storage, surfboards, food service, food packaging, different packaging material, etc.

What Kind of Paint Can I Use On Styrofoam? 4 Options You Should Look At!

You can use various paints on Styrofoam, but not all will give the same result. So, It is often asked what paint is safe for Styrofoam? Here are some standard paints you can use on Styrofoam.

Acrylic Paint

When working on arts and crafts paints, Acrylic paints are the top choice. They are water-based. This paint is simple to apply. Directly using it on the Styrofoam surface won’t cause any problem.

However, they are not safe to use if you have kids at home. The paint chemicals can be easily absorbed on children’s sensitive skin. However, if acrylic paint is free from toxic substances, people can use it.

Tempera Paint

When you have children at home, tempera paint is the best option. They are kid-friendly because most of them are non-toxic paint.

This type of paint is full of pigment, so they are mostly bright colors. However, if the Styrofoam surface you want to paint is more likely to have regular water or moisture contact, it is better to avoid using tempera paints.

Latex Paint

If you want typical paint for internal home walls, you can choose Latex paint. But, this water-based paint will not provide a high-quality paint surface.

In addition, it is not a great choice for busy Styrofoam surfaces. Also, their curing time is longer than other paints, and they may not adhere perfectly if the Styrofoam surface is dirty.

Spray Paint

Spray Paint is different from other paints. When you use spray paint on Styrofoam, make sure it is solvent-free and has a water-based formula. This will ensure no melting and cracking issues.

Brands like Rust-Oleum, Krylon, etc., make high-quality spray paints. Their drying task is fast. Also, providing a high-gloss finish is an easy-peasy job for this paint. Since I have personally used many of them, it is not hard to see how good they really are.

Ensure the best spray paint for polystyrene or Styrofoam that doesn’t contain acid. You can find all product details from the bottle label. Though their price tag is slightly higher than other paints, you can save time using this paint.

What Are The Different Types of Spray Paint for Styrofoam?

I was trying to figure out what type of spray paint to use on Styrofoam? After searching, I found different types of spray paint for Styrofoam are available such as water-based, oil-based, Acrylic. Nitro-Combi, etc.


Though a limited number of spray paints are water-based, they are the best option for Styrofoam.

If the spray paint has initial higher water content, it makes the paint job on Styrofoam easier. As a result, you will get a smoother finish.


Oil-based spray paints are not a good choice for Styrofoam since they contain solvents or chemical substances. In addition, it can damage the foam, resulting in entering the foam’s pores. After that, you can use this with Primer.


Though acrylic paints will take several coatings to cover porous holes on Styrofoam, its working ability on Styrofoam is excellent.

Moreover, this type of paint has long-lasting durability and can adhere well to the Styrofoam surface. Also, it can provide a smooth exterior finish.

Acrylic is a special spray paint that won’t melt Styrofoam easily. So, you have nothing to be concerned about dripping issues.


Though Nitro-combi spray paint has strong adhesion and dries faster, it is solvent-based paint that is not effective in covering the holes of Styrofoam.

However, using some additional products may solve the problem while getting clean-line work and making the paint job faster.

What is The Best Spray Paint for Styrofoam?

When you want to get a reliable paint result on Styrofoam, choosing the best option can help you achieve your desired outcome. Here are the top 6 spray paints for Styrofoam:

1. Krylon Short Cuts

Just because this spray paint has fewer ounces doesn’t mean you can’t have decent coverage. If you want to achieve better coverage with minimal quantity, this Krylon spray paint for Styrofoam is one of the best options.

Krylon Short Cuts

22 Colors

This spray paint is available in 22 colors, making it highly versatile. So, painting your preferred shade will be no problem at all.


Worry about damaging your Styrofoam surface? This foam-safe spray paint has an acid-free formula to ensure no permanent damage and decay.

Archival Safe

Krylon KSCS09900 Aerosol Spray Paint is archival safe, meaning no quality deterioration too soon. Thus, keeping the Styrofoam object in good condition will ensure durable paint.

High Gloss Finish

You can get the highest reflective appearance from this spray paint, which has stain-resistant properties of all finishes. It is easy to clean too.

Affordable Option

When you compare its price and quantity, it is a great deal. However, a large amount would be better for large Styrofoam projects.

What I Like
  • Can hold water
  • Perfect color
  • A little goes a long way
  • Very smooth finish
  • Perfect for touch ups
What I don’t Like
  • Large-sized bottles could be better.

For Whom to Use

This one appears a perfect addition for people looking for long-lasting, super shiny, and versatile spray paint.

2. Rust-Oleum Stone Creations Spray

Rust-Oleum 7992830 spray paint is a decent option if you want to achieve a stone effect on your Styrofoam surface.

RustOleum Stone Creations

Textured Formula

This Rustoleum spray paint for Styrofoam can help you add depth and texture to your spray paint. It can give a unique stone appearance.

Decent Coverage

The whole bottle contains 12 Ounces, which can cover up to 12 sq ft. It will take only 30 to 60 minutes to dry the paint fully.

7 Colors

Rust-Oleum Stone versatile spray foam insulation paint is available in 7 colors. For example, you can use the gray stone color to create a dramatic scheme.

Water-based Resins Formula

Newbies often need to apply the paint several times to get a perfect result. Since it has a water-based resins formula, you won’t face the hassle of cleaning it.

Easy to Work On

You can use this spray with other spray paint to hide surface imperfections. Make sure to use similar base color for a perfect match.

What I Like
  • A strong texture and pretty color variations
  • Covers very well
  • Real faux stone look
  • Use as directed with Primer and Top Coat.
What I don’t Like
  • Not suitable for the outside environment.

For Whom to Use

Works great on styrofoam heads, mainly perfect for people who want to use spray paint for internal Styrofoam objects.

3. Liquitex Professional Spray Paint

If you are looking for premium acrylic spray paint for Styrofoam, this option is your right ticket.

Liquitex Professional Spray Paint

Solvent-light Formula

This spray paint has a solvent-light formula, making it non-flammable and not prone to get into flame easily.

Pleasant Smell

This spray paint won’t cause any problem to sensitive noses since its smell is pretty pleasant. Plus, it won’t cause any irritation to your eyes and skin.


Since it has a water-soluble formula, it will take a little bit more time to dry. Thus, you can utilize the time to work the paint differently and more creatively.

12 Colors

This high-quality spray paint is available in 12 colors or more, and you can use a wide range of versatile surfaces.

Excellent Art Pigments

The manufacturer uses basket bead-mill technology to create the finest quality color-intense artist pigments and provide fine dispersion and great color development.

What I Like
  • Excellent recovery
  • No harsh smell
  • Won’t melt styrofoam
What I don’t Like
  • Few complained about clogging issues

For Whom to Use

Liquitex 4450432 Professional is ideal for people who want to achieve a matte finish and need more drying time to work on the paint surface.

4. Montana Infra Spray Paint

It appears to be a good choice if you are looking for a paint that can be mixed with other paints and primers.

Montana Infra Spray Paint

Waterproof Formula

This Montana paint has a unique waterproof formula, which contains fewer VOCs. You can apply it to busy areas where excessive moisture is prone.

Huge Coverage

This waterproof spray paint for Styrofoam contains 13.5 Fl Oz per can, so covering a large painting project will be easier.

Compatible with Paints

According to many users, this spray paint can provide an impressive base coat when mixing it with the right color. Using a compatible primary is important too.

Incredibly Affordable

This outdoor spray paint for Styrofoam is available in 12 color options, and each of them has a low price to suit your budget easily.

Vibrant Color

All 12 paint colors can provide a vibrant texture on your Styrofoam surface. It is a good quality applicator, which can offer well coat and spray impressively well.

What I Like
  • No fading issue
  • Possible to overlapping with other colors immediately
  • Weather and winterproof formula
  • Versatile cap system
  • Best for outdoor graffiti & street art.
What I don’t Like
  • Not highly durable.

For Whom to Use

This spray is mainly suitable for people who want an average spray paint at an incredibly low price. However, it seems an excellent pick for external use.

5. Krylon Glitter Aerosol Spray

If you want to give your Styrofoam a perfectly multicolor finish with sparkle shine, Krylon I00405 Glitter Aerosol seems a decent choice.

Krylon Glitter Aerosol Spray

Aesthetic Appearance

Unlike typical spray paints, this aerosol spray has a glittering effect. In addition, its multicolor finish will surely make your project stands out from other ordinary paints.

Quick Drying

The aerosol spray doesn’t take much time to dry. If you hurry to complete your DIY project, this paint is a perfect addition.

8 Color choices

The spray paint is available in 8 color options: glistering gold, pampered purple, resplendent red, etc.

Small But Effective

Though each container has only 4 Ounces, it is effective to use and won’t take a huge quantity to sparkle your project up!

What I Like
  • Available in multiple colors
  • Acid-free
  • Dry to touch in 10 minutes
  • Shimmery finish dries fully in 2 hours.
What I don’t Like
  • Few complained the lid often stuck.

For Whom to Use

Krylon I00405 is perfect for holidays, weddings, prom, and special event projects, as well as everyday decor, arts, and papercrafts. This spray paint is mainly used for giving Styrofoam a sparkle appearance. You need to use other paints for the base coat and topcoat.

6. Rust-Oleum 267116 Painter’s Touch 2X Ultra Cover

This spray paint can be a great choice for all Styrofoam objects, whether internal or external. It is highly versatile.

Rust-Oleum Painter's Touch 2X Ultra Cover

Extended Protection

Rust-Oleum Painter’s Touch 2X Ultra Cover go-to spray paint will never disappoint you when you ensure perfect preparation for the spray paint. Protecting the surface for an extended time will be easygoing for this paint.

20 Min Dry Time

Need quick drying? No worries! This versatile spray paint takes only 20 minutes to dry properly without leaving any watery shade.

Glossy Finish

Whether you are painting on your old or new Styrofoam, this high-quality spray paint will provide a glossy finish along with a fresh shine.

Easy To Work

You can easily paint on hard-to-reach areas from different angles using this spray paint. Its comfort tip will decrease finger fatigue too.

What I Like
  • Covers well as a primer for paint
  • No sanding prep required
  • Nice adhesion and coverage
  • Nozzle does not clog like most
  • Easy to apply clear coat
What I don’t Like
  • A little pricey

For Whom to Use

Great to touch up styrofoam pumpkins. If your Styrofoam object is highly exposed to an external or adverse environment, Rust-Oleum 267116 spray paint appears a great choice due to its better adhesion and resistant power.

6 Important Things to Look Before Make the Right Choice

When looking for the best Styrofoam-safe spray paint, it is necessary to avoid overlooking crucial factors.

Spray Paint Type

One of the most important things is considering the spray paint type. Try choosing water-based or Acrylic paint to ensure no melting issues.


How the paint color appears once it is dried fully is another important point to consider.

High-quality spray paints for Styrofoam will have increased pigments to turn the shade into vibrant. But, applying several coating for perfect results is necessary.


Try choosing Styrofoam safe spray paint if you have kids at home to avoid severe health concerns.

It should be free from toxins and other harmful substances. Also, check out whether the spray paint is a certified and authentic product.


At first, determine how much paint you will require to complete the whole Styrofoam project. Spray paints bottles are available in both small, medium, and large-sized.

Generally, manufacturers mention how much square the bottle paint can cover and how many layers of paints will be required.


Make sure you set your budget before choosing a particular spray paint for Styrofoam.

Bigger containers appear more economical option if you want a pocket-friendly option. Acrylic paints are more affordable than others.

Clean Ability

If cleaning paint is messy and takes hours, you won’t enjoy doing it. Some water-based and Acrylic spray paints require simple cleaning procedures.

They are easy to come off. You can wash them off smoothly using soapy water. But remember one point: not all spray paints are easy to deal with.

How Does Spray Paint Work for Styrofoam?

Though water-based spray paints are not as durable as solvent-based spray paint, they are perfect for Styrofoam.

Styrofoam surfaces are not fully smooth like automobiles. They have a lot of pores on their surfaces. Applying typical spray paints may not give you a perfect result.

Since spray paints on Styrofoam is a little bit tricky to apply, make sure you use a barrier coating for the best result. This will prevent damaging propellants.

You can either use a primer or high-quality spray paint. Rattle-can spray paint is more preferred. Choosing a reliable spray paint will ensure no dissolving issues.

Besides, the surface will be free from corroded. There will be no hollow or indentation on the surface other than these.

What Are The Challenges of Using Spray Paint for Styrofoam?

You will face some challenges if you have decided to spray paints for Styrofoam.

best spray paint for polystyrene

Melting Issues

Many people often ask this question: will spray paint melts Styrofoam? It depends on the product you use.

When you fail to choose the right spray paint for Styrofoam, you have the probability of experiencing melting issues.


Not all spray paints are suitable for Styrofoam. Choosing incompatible spray paints may prevent you from getting a smoother finish on that surface.


Most experts recommend using water-based latex or acrylic spray paint for Styrofoam. However, it may sometimes not be available in your area.

Extra Coatings

Since Styrofoam surfaces have a lot of tiny pores, you have first to use a primer or similar thick spray paint to make the surface smooth. Only then can you apply the final spray paint. Otherwise, the result will be uneven, and the paint will probably have a look that you don’t want.

Extra Cautions

Since Styrofoam surfaces are not completely flat, being a little bit extra cautious is necessary. This will ensure a perfect result. When applying for the first time, you should first know how to spray Paint Styrofoam correctly.

What Are The Benefits of Using Spray Paint on Styrofoam?

Using spray paints on Styrofoam offers several advantages.

  • Unlike other art projects, you will need to spend less money to complete a Styrofoam project using spray paint.
  • If you know the right method of using this paint, spraying Styrofoam in the application procedure should not be any problem.
  • High-quality spray paints on Styrofoam have impressive adhesion power and long-lasting durability.
  • Unlike typical paints, they won’t take much time to dry and cure.
  • Spray paints can cover more area with a small amount, making your painting projects more affordable.

Tips for Using Spray Paint For Styrofoam: 6 Ways to Save More Money!

You can’t take spray painting on Styrofoam as simple as other objects. Knowing some helpful tips can help you get the painting job done more smoothly. You can walk through the below tips to achieve a successful Styrofoam project.

  • Some areas of Styrofoam may don’t need any spray paint. Cover those spaces using painter’s tape or masking tape.
  • You can sand the polystyrene surface gently to achieve a better adhesion and a smooth, even surface.
  • Before spraying on the whole Styrofoam, test it out on a small surface to avoid unwanted mistakes.
  • You can practice spray painting on an old Styrofoam object to have a better experiment.
  • Don’t paint thick coats initially. Instead, use thin coats. This will ensure quick dryness and no crack or flake.
  • Start painting vertically and then end painting horizontally to achieve a better overall surface coverage.

The Best Spray Paint Primer for Styrofoam

All the spray paints I have mentioned have excellent quality, and they are highly compatible with Styrofoam. But it is better to test out the spray corner in one corner of the object.

If you notice any melting issues, using one dedicated primer will be a good decision. That’s why I have chosen one of the best spray primers for Styrofoam. Since I have personally used it, I know how good the spray paint is.

Montana TECH Primer

The Montana Tech Primer Plastic Spray Paint is 100% lead and CFC-free. It doesn’t provide any reflective appearance, so it is easy to hide the color.

The primer has superb adhesion power and is pretty easy to work with various work surfaces. It takes less time to dry too.


Can You Spray Paint Styrofoam?

Yes, you can spray paint Styrofoam. However, it is important to use the correct type of paint and equipment for the job. You will need to use a special foam-safe paint. If you are not sure whether or not your paint is foam-safe, contact the manufacturer for more information.

Can You Waterproof Styrofoam through Painting?

Spray painting does not make it waterproof and may even be less water-resistant. If you need to waterproof Styrofoam, use a water-based latex paint combined with primer. This primer is available in many stores and can be used on both indoor and outdoor surfaces.

To protect the painted surface from fading, apply a coat of sealant. For extra protection, you can also apply a coat of polyurethane or varnish after painting.

What Spray Paint Can You Use on Polystyrene?

Many types of spray paint can be used on polystyrene. The most common type of spray paint is latex which is water-based paint. In general, spray paints that are labelled as being for use on plastic or vinyl are safe to use on polystyrene. Always check the product label to be sure. My recommendation is to use Krylon Short Cuts. It’s a high gloss, durable, and flexible finish that can be applied to any surface.

How Do You Get Paint to Stick to Polystyrene?

Paint doesn’t usually stick to polystyrene because the two materials have very different properties. Polystyrene is a rigid, brittle material that doesn’t absorb paint well. Paint also contains water, which makes it soft and pliable. To get paint to stick to polystyrene, you need to apply a layer of primer first. This will help the paint adhere to the surface and make it easier to remove later. Then, you need to apply a layer of paint. Make sure that the layer is thick enough so that the paint can properly adhere to the polystyrene.

What’s the Best Way to Paint Styrofoam?

The best way to paint Styrofoam is to use a spray-on primer and then paint it with water-base latex paint.

Can You Use Acrylic Spray Paint on Styrofoam?

Yes, acrylic spray paint can be used on Styrofoam. If you are using an acrylic spray paint designed for use on Styrofoam, then it is likely that the paint will not damage the foam. However, it is always best to test a small area first to make sure.

How Do You Keep Styrofoam from Crumbling?

There are a few ways to keep Styrofoam from crumbling. One way is to place it in a larger container than the Styrofoam pieces or put newspapers or other heavy objects on top of the Styrofoam so that it can’t move. Another way is to use a hot glue gun. The glue will bind the pieces together, and it will provide some insulation.

Can You Use Rustoleum Spray Paint on Styrofoam?

Yes, You can use Rustoleum on Styrofoam, but before that, you should first test the paint on a small area of the foam to make sure it doesn’t eat away at the material. If it’s damaged the surface, you need to prime the surface with a primer made for Styrofoam.


When it comes to choosing the best spray paint for Styrofoam, considering some crucial factors is necessary that I have already mentioned. So, which spray paint option have you decided to purchase after going through this article?

Hopefully, this article has helped you choose the perfect spray paint to work conveniently and smoothly on your desired Styrofoam object.

Thanks for reading!