How Long Does Metallic Spray Paint Take To Dry?

How Long Does Metallic Spray Paint Take To DryMetallic spray paints look amazing but as shiny as it is, you’re probably wondering ‘how long does spray paint take to dry?’. Well, as far as layering, metallic spray paint will typically be dry enough after about 15 minutes to apply another coat. The only exception is on metal, where you should wait at least an hour, and also keep in mind that to fully dry you generally need about 24 hours with metallic spray paint.

The label on your paint will give you a definite time for your brand, so be sure to doublecheck.

Today we’re going to talk a little bit about metallic spray paint. We’ll let you know how you can make it dry a little faster, as well as why street artists often use fire to dry their paints. Finally, we’ll tell you what kind of drying-time differences you may expect in hot and cold weather.

Let’s discuss metallic spray paint and what you need to know!

How can you make metallic spray paint dry faster?How can you make metallic spray paint dry faster

If you want to make your metallic spray paint dry just a little bit faster then there are a few things which you can do to shave off a little time. Below we’ve listed some of the easiest methods which you may use for this, but one simple tip that will save you a lot of time is this: keep your coats thin. With quick, short bursts of spray paint, you can get in the habit of quickly creating thin coats that you can layer as-needed and which will dry more quickly.

Let’s look at some other ways to speed up the drying time and if you still want a few more drying methods after these, be sure to take a look at this 3rd party article on the subject for a few additional tidbits!

Space heater

If you’ve done a lot of painting in the summer then you’ve surely noticed that it goes fairly quickly (unless you’re in a humid area!). A little heat helps when it comes to drying, so having a portable heater in the room during drying times can really cut a few minutes off of the time that metallic spray paint takes to fully dry.


Open the windows, turn on a fan… get the air circulating! This is best done before you even start painting and let the circulation continue throughout the painting and the drying process and you’ll save yourself a little time there as well!


Finally, humidity can really slow down your drying time, so a dehumidifier in a closed room, perhaps with a fan for added circulation, can also help to dry your work just a bit more quickly.

Why do spray paint artists use fire?

Why do spray paint artists use fireYou may have some street artists using fire to quickly dry metallic and other spray paints and while I can’t recommend doing this on your own without some serious tutorials, I can certainly explain the ‘why’ of it.

Artists like Matt Sorenson use fire to dry their spray paints because it’s actually quite efficient, produces interesting textures, and because it’s really quite flashy! The fire burns off the flammable portions of the paints, which are part of the aerosol propellant, but it doesn’t dull down the colors or damage the pigments in the process.

The thing is, this is more about interesting textures and flash than speeding up the drying process. Using flames does dry it quickly, but it also cracks the paint a little, so if you are considering trying this as a drying method, I wouldn’t recommend it.

That said, it IS definitely a neat way to produce some killer textures in your work, but that’s an article for another time!

Does spray paint dry faster in heat or cold?Does spray paint dry faster in heat or cold

Hotter temperatures definitely dry your spray paint out faster. When it’s too cold, your paint actually has a harder time bonding to the paint. Now, if it’s TOO hot, then your paint will dry a little too quickly and will likely crack in the process!

When it comes to drying, we’ve actually got a pretty extensive guide on the subject which you may check out ( if you like. It covers optimal temperatures, quick-drying techniques, and tells you what to expect with a number of different mediums. Give it a look if you’d like a little more info on drying in extreme temperatures… it’s well worth the time!

In conclusion

Recap time! Today we’ve talked about some spray paint basics and advised that metallic spray paint dries enough in 15 minutes for an additional coat, but that full drying time might well take up to 24 hours. We’ve also talked about using fans, dehumidifiers, and heaters to speed up the process and briefly touched on the street artist technique of drying by fire.

Finally, spray paint dries faster with heat than it does with cold, so if you live somewhere that gets very chilly, consider putting off outside projects until summer if you can to save yourself a few headaches.

Until next time, keep your patience close and know that while it seems like forever, that spray paint is surely going to dry!

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