Resin coloring experiments – trying new resin colors

Alternative things to color resincoloring epoxy resin

I hate wasting resin.  I realize a little bit leftover isn’t a big deal in the grand scheme of what I have to get done every day, but I hate it nonetheless.  There’s just something about throwing away resin that I worked so hard to measure, mix, and get bubble-free that seems so … well …  wrong.  I always have a list of resin coloring experiments and ideas of things to do the next time this happens, so I thought it would be fun to show you what happens in the (resin) mad scientist lab.

Step 1:  Find random things to use for your resin coloring experiments

adding colors to epoxy resin

After dividing the resin into 4 separate 1-ounce mixing cups.  I scoured my house and studio to see what I had handy to mix in the leftover resin.  Here’s what I found:

1) red kids’ paint (the label didn’t specify exactly what it was, but I’m guessing it is a water-based paint)

2) blue sidewalk chalk

3) paprika (yes — that one — from the spice cabinet)

4) kids’ watercolor paints

The picture here gives you an idea of how much I added to each small cup of resin.

color in resin

Here’s what the resin samples looked like after I stirred each for about a minute.

Step 2:  Add to a silicone mold

resin curing in a silicone mold

I had an imperfect silicone mold to cast my resin into and decided to pour some into each of the 1-inch squares.

An important note here:  When doing these experiments, you never know how your resin is going to turn out.  Sometimes inclusions and colorants can keep the resin from curing.  When deciding whether or not to pour your experiments into a mold, use one that you can afford to lose if your resin turns out to be a goopy mess.  If you don’t have a ‘throwaway’ mold to use, then let your resin cure in your mixing cups.

Step 3:  Demold and assess the results of your resin coloring experiments

how to color resin

Here are how the finished samples turned out.  The red paint colored as I expected it would.  I am also surprised that resin cured without any problems, even though water-based paints have extra moisture that can cause resin curing problems.  The chalk and paprika colored the resin more effectively than I thought they would as well.  In fact, I wasn’t expecting the pastel chalk to color so darkly.  The watercolor paint shavings managed to tint the resin some but weren’t able to dissolve in the resin.

color samples resin

The effects are more pronounced when you hold them up to the light.  In all the ones where I used powder pigments, you can see particles.

So what do you think?  What resin coloring experiments have you done?

And if you hate wasting resin too, here are some other leftover resin project ideas.

 

 

Unpublished Blog Posts of Resin Obsession, LLC © 2020 Resin Obsession, LLC

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29 thoughts on “Resin coloring experiments – trying new resin colors

  1. Kathrine,

    Thanks for the experiments. I often wonder what will and will not mix with resin and your “Mad Scientist” postings are a great help! Keep ’em coming!

  2. So far I’ve tried: eyeshadow, loose pigment, acrylic paints of several varieties and brands, and india ink – but I would still love to try: charcoal, oil paint (who knows?), turmeric (used to dye mustard yellow so it might work!),food dye, nail polish, and anything else I can think of. I love resin experiments- great post!

  3. I use oil paint which works nicely, but i have to say eyeshadow has worked beautifully. I mix in some white oild paint first to give it an opaque look.

  4. I am having trouble making the cameo cabachond to turn out. To use 2colors it is very hard to get the resin in the little spots without overflowing into the rest of the mold.

    1. I have not tried that, however, our chief chemist expects that they will work to color polyester resin.

  5. I’m experimenting with resin and colours and I’m new to this. I’m trying to make small flowers. I bought some moulds but to be honest they are rubbish so I’m going to try some amazing putty and try to make my own. I want to achieve a solid colour but beautiful pastel shades. I’ve tried acrylic paints but I just can’t seem to achieve the colours I need. Can anyone help please.

      1. Thank you, yes I have but I’m reluctant to experiment with them. I hoped someone would know for sure how I could achieve the opaque pastel colours.

    1. Try going to your favorite paint store and get some paint pigment. It won’t contain stuff you don’t want in your resin, and it is more concentrated, and will color more solidly. You could also try powdered pigments, metalflake, pearl powder, etc from your automotive paint store.

  6. i know you used watercolor flakes here but what about the tube of water color paint that is already liquidy? would it mix better and have a more opaque color? im trying to get a opaque white from a clear resin. ( i knwo itd be easier to get resin that cures white most likely) i’ve tried chalk pastel but it was more off white, i tried acrylic paint but getting the mix right was stressful and gave me flakey color or off white as well. any suggestions if the liquid watercolor wouldnt work?

  7. Hi. I read here about using eye shadow to dye the resin. So I gave it a go and it worked brilliantly so happy with the results. Looks amazing.

  8. I like the watercolor paint and paprika the best. I would suggest trying powdered tempera paint. You normally mix it with a little water to make the paint, and I expect it’d work great for dyeing resin. Dying or dyeing?

    Tempera paint powder also comes in all kinds of colors.

  9. I’m New to resin. I have a slice of beautiful wood which has a hole in the middle. I want to use glass chips and a dye that would give me a turquoise transparent effect in the wood. What resin will work best on wood, I plan on making a small side table out of the wood so it needs to be able to take hot and cold drinks without effecting the surface. I also need to know the best dye to use to give me the turquoise transparent look.

  10. Hi all
    i have a oak kitchen worktop and where the tap has leaked has cause varnish to disappear and slightly rot the wood – so I’m thinking route the bad wood out and add resin and dye
    What resin and dye would be best – where best place to purchase resin etc thanks in advance

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