How to Clean Resin Cups To Use Again

How to clean epoxy resin tools and cupsLearning how to clean epoxy resin tools and cups is not only a great way to save money, but it’s also a thoughtful way to reduce the amount of waste you produce. Plus, being thrifty like that is a true sign that you’re a resin artist.  Ideally, you can use reusable silicone mixing cups, but if not, here’s how I like to clean my resin tools and supplies to reuse them again:

Step 1:  Wipe clean

Wipe off liquids with a paper towel. Clean up as much as you possibly can while the resin is still wet. Once it gets sticky and starts curing, the paper towel will stick to the resin.

 

Step 2:  Wipe with a solvent

Clean the surface with resin remover (best choice), denatured alcohol or acetone. This will remove the remaining residue.

⚠️ IMPORTANT: Wear nitrile gloves when you do this.  Resin + solvent + skin = bad rash.

Step 3:  Wash the cups

Wash your cups and tools with quality soap (not the dollar store stuff) and water.  Flip upside and allow to dry on a towel.

You can see how easy it is to clean epoxy resin from plastic cups here:


What are some other ways of how to clean resin cups?

resin skin from silicone cup

When cleaning silicone resin molds and other items, you can simply let the resin cure, then peel it off once hardened.

 


For plastic mixing cups, let the resin cure, then flex the cup. You’ll be able to peel a skin out of the resin cup. This is easier if you leave something like a toothpick or wooden stir stick in the cup to use as leverage.

Plus, you’ll find this is #oddlysatisfying.

 

Cleaning foam brushes doesn’t work well. For your sanity, just throw them away.

What else should you know about how to clean epoxy resin tools and cups?

If you have more than just a ‘little bit of resin’ leftover in your cup, be sure you dispose of it properly. Here’s how to dispose of resin safely.

But then again, why would you not use it?  Here are some of my favorite leftover resin projects.

If you find you are regularly mixing more resin than you use, here’s how you can get better at estimating how much resin do I need?

Should you get resin on your hands, use resin remover to remove as much residue as possible. Then, use good-quality soap to wash your hands. And this gives you a tip to clean resin off your hands if you still have sticky residue that won’t come off.

Frustrated with the results you’re getting when creating with epoxy resin?

Don’t be!  I’ve written a ebook for beginners sharing everything I’ve learned in more than 17 years of creating with resin. You’ll get the essential details instead of wasting hours in the resin rabbit hole.  Buy your PDF copy of Resin Fundamentals and read it the same day.

 

Unpublished Blog Posts of Resin Obsession, LLC © 2023 Resin Obsession, LLC

Like this post? You may be interested in  THE Essential Tips For Working With Epoxy Resin

43 thoughts on “How to Clean Resin Cups To Use Again

  1. Another tip for cleaning hands is a bit of cooking oil rubbed on and then washed of with soap and water it cleans quickly and easily

  2. I often see people applying a top coat of UV resin on their finished items with paintbrushes. How do you remove the UV resin or even epoxy resin from small paintbrushes without ruining the bristles? And is their a particular type of paintbrush that you recommend (i.e., acrylic, natural, etc.)?

    1. I wash mine with soap and water while they are still wet. I’ve never tried this with UV resin though. I have a hard time believing you can get out the UV resin before it starts to cure.

      1. So I’m going to ask something that may seem silly but I’m very new at resin; do you wash the hardner cups and resin cups separately? If you do wash them separately do you wash them at different sinks? Do I have to worry about this stuff curing in the pipes basically?

        1. Hi Leigh, I don’t wash my cups until I have all the components wiped out with paper towels and wiped clean with solvents. There shouldn’t be any residue left at that point to bother your plumbing.

          1. Hi Tisha, if all the uncured resin is out of the cup, then yes, it’s safe to wash in the same sink as your dishes. (That’s what I do.)

    2. I know this comment is old, but I just wrap brushes with UV resin in a small piece of aluminum foil. No light so it never cures and stays wet until the next use.

  3. I have a spray bottle of regular alcohol that I spray in my plastic and silicone cups as soon as I have finished pouring; it works well. Acetone also works well, but Nitrile gloves have a 4 minute tolerance for acetone, so change gloves if your clean-up is taking more than 4 minutes.

  4. I am so glad you posted this. I am the laziest cleaner. I let my mixing tools sit way to long, then hope I can peel the cured resin off. I will try to use acetone on the remaining bits next.

  5. I am searching for any help in finding how to protect large pours on canvas
    -how to protect floor from pours, a lot of pours (drips)
    -how to protect tops of wet pours on big canvas

  6. I didn’t get my plastic resin cup clean before it hardened and am having a hard time because a lot of it is just droplets but I can’t get it all because they are the measuring cups so pretty small. Any ideas, should I just throw them out??? Can I just put more resin there to measure and mix or even just measure or will that contaminate the new resin??? Extreme newbie here I’ve only done 2 things, alphabet keychains.

    1. Hi Jamie, have you tried flexing the cup to pop out the leftover resin? As long as the resin is cured, it won’t contaminate any future pours. I have cups like this too and I set them aside to use for the times I need extra cups to pour mixed resin into to color it.

    2. Hi Jamie, Use tape to stick onto the dried resin bits which will unstick them from the mould 😃 hope you’re enjoying your resin exploring!

  7. For UV resin brushes, once I’m finished I wrap them tight in foil. I have been able to reuse mine over and over again.
    Hope it works for you…..
    Love your advise on cleaning the cups.
    Thanks

  8. Hello. I am a lover of making resin items. I was using resin for months without issues and then I somehow started to have reactions to what we believe is the alcohol. I use a respirator mask, neo-prin gloves with nitrile gloves underneath, safety glasses and still have the same reaction. Once the alcohol is even airborne, my eyes swell up and get red and start to flake. I have had to go to urgent care 3 times and received shots, eye meds and ointments. To say the least, it is miserable. However, I don’t want to stop creating if I don’t have to. I have a lot of time and money invested in my supplies. I heard that you can use vinegar to clean as well. Is this factual? If not are there any less invasive chemicals that will clean it? Not really wanting to use Acetone or Lacquer Thinner. Tried denatured alcohol as well with the same effect. Please someone tell me there is hope. I can’t stand to stop but can’t continue the painful process and Dr. visits either. Please help.

  9. toclean my cups I let the left over resin harden and then pull it out.. I use Isopropanol to clean my surfaces and hands, it works really well

  10. Hi guys well just recently started crafting with resin and oh my gosh had ive had the worse messy disasters lol and tried alcohol and acetone and they worked ehh only a little ..its was so frustrating because then i would get resin on already finished items or one time i poured to much top coat to dome a fully done resin coaster and it dripped off the sides went under it as well just a mess and i decided since it was still wet to just wipe off the top coat before it cured off my coaster n just redo it another time before it ruined my coaster and then i would need to sand it down so i rinsed off all the resin easy and fast with VINEGAR. My coaster was saved still shiney not one bit of the resin on it so pretty much i use vinegar to remove resin messes. Its works 100 times better then alcohol i use vinegar for every accident even to wipe off prints i may leave on a resin object with my resin covered gloves by mistake.

  11. Great advice as always, Katherine! Just a comment about recycling and avoiding waste: having to use (clean) paper towels and nitrile gloves, which get thrown away each time and cannot be recycled, probably creates more waste than tossing small measuring cups full of resin. In this light, the best solution might be the one of leaving a toothpick in the cup and peeling off the cured resin to throw away the next day.

    1. Hi Susan, thanks for sharing that tip. I will do that as well if there is a lot of resin in the cup. Otherwise, I find I can’t get out all of the cured resin by grabbing the toothpick unless there is a thick pour at the bottom. Do you have that problem too or is it just me? 🙂

  12. Can someone help! Silicone molds became greasy after couple of uses although I haven’t used demolder 😭
    Please someone help how to clean them, because products are pretty hard when I take them out, but have a sticky film 🤔

  13. I recently started working with resin and I love it. I recently had a disaster with a paper weight. I put seashells in the bottom with a couple small real flowers with a butterfly. I filled my resin ball up noting I had to use 2 different resins. The next day I opened it up and the bottom had very little resin and there were places that didn’t have resin inside the ball and if that wasn’t enough it had a tit on top. It turned yellow so now I just call it my boob ball. It’s still sticky on the bottom too. Can someone tell me what happened?

  14. So I understand how to get the harden resin out the cup but how do you get the separate part a and part b cups cleaned that you do your measuring in?

  15. Any suggestions on how to clean a electric hand mixer? I can’t rinse it off in the sink so what would be the best way?

    1. Hi Elise, try spraying the beaters with cooking spray while the resin is still wet. The oils should make it come off the mixer.

  16. Yo uso como medidores los vasos de los yogures que gastamos la familia y así los reciclo. Incluso los utilizo varias veces.
    También tengo siempre algunos moldes pequeños preparados para la resina sobrante y así no me sobran grandes cantidades

  17. There are so many plastic bottles, cups and containers available today I mean a lot of food items come in plastic. I save many of these and repurpose them for mixing my resin. I try to pop the dried resin out of the flexible cups after it hardens and reuse again if possible.
    I bought a cheap postal scale and do my measurements for my pours. To keep surfaces clean I use wax paper or sheet plastic underneath.
    I be also wear nitrile gloves which I wear over and over again.
    Beware of chemical cleaners. I use them but follow the safety instructions. Avoid.getting it in your skin. These are absorbed thru your skin and cause damage to your skin, organs, eyes etc. Even taking precautions I have issues. Use a barrier cream lotion on your hands. I buy nine mil gloves which are longer at Harbor Freight which work well, wear a respirator and face shield.
    Resin is messy no matter how hard you try to be clean. I work in my garage. I would not do this work in my house due to the safety issues. I also have a fire extinguisher nearby.

  18. My resin takes 24 hours to cure. I want to use it stick something to something else. I will be placing a small plastic character on top of the resin and press down in the resin only slightly to stick and hold it up, not sink. How long do I wait before I add the character?

  19. Hello! My first attempt i used a greased mini muffin pan, and the resin (pucks) wont come out! I used resin release spray. Could i put it in a warm oven to get them to release from the pan? I am at a loss of what to do, i dont want to waste all the materials that i put i nto the resin. Thanks

    1. Hi Pam! You could try running the pan under warm water to release the resin, but unfortunately the resin might be stuck. In the future I would recommend using silicone molds and pouring in layers to avoid the epoxy from getting suck in the molds.

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