Can You Brush Paint Over Spray Paint

Can You Brush Paint Over Spray Paint?

Perhaps you have something that you have spray-painted over that you really wish you could repaint.  But you are uncertain if you should.  Maybe you fear that if you do paint over it with a brush, it will bubble.  Or you wonder if it will peel or not stick.  Whatever you are feeling, you just are not sure if you want to take that chance.

If you look around your home, you may find various things that are spray painted.  Many will spray paint their outdoor furniture to keep it looking newer for longer.  Others will spray paint different garden items, such as butterflies that hang on a fence or metal pinwheels.

Well, the good thing is that you can brush paint over spray paint!  Keep reading to find out the best way to brush paint over anything you have spray painted.

Brush painting

Brush painting is a painting that is applied with a brush.  This type of painting is more time-consuming than spray painting but can lend better and more accurate results.

Brush painting can allow you to have many effects.  You can use a dry brush, or you may make something look distressed.  The painter can use chalk paint, watercolors, and so many others to give special effects that make it look completely different than just regular paints.  Crackle paints provide a unique look, or you can do a marble effect with different paintbrushes.

Spray painting

Spray paint is just that- paint in a spray can.  It is very convenient to use and can provide a good amount of gloss or satin shine.  If you do not like brush strokes or want even coverage, spray painting is for you.

One cool thing about spray painting is that it can provide a build-up of coverage.  There are spray paints that have a metallic finish, some that are neon, and even others that make the paint look as if it is stone.

Why you may wish to choose brush painting over spray painting

There are various reasons as to why a person would pick to brush paint overspray paint.  There is no one way that is better than another way, rather it is just a matter of personal preference.

More colors

When you are working with spray paint, there are only a certain amount of colors. You will have your basics, like white, black, red, green, and blue.  Granted, you may have color variations as well, such as light green and dark green.  But with other types of brush paints, there are more color choices.  Reds, pinks, greens, yellows, oranges, blues, grays, and so much more.  You are not limited to what you have to pick.

With acrylic or latex paints, you can often have your colors customized.


Spray paint can get rather expensive depending on the brand.  There are some store brands that are only a buck a can, but these are generally only in basic colors.  However, you should also think about the quality of the paint.  Many of the inexpensive paints do not cover the best, so you will end up going through more.


Spray paint can give off toxic fumes.  Many individuals do not care for working with this type of paint due to this.  Spray paint must also be applied outdoors or in a well-ventilated area.

Painting over spray paint with a brush

If you intend to brush paint over something that has been spray painted, you will need to make sure that it is completely dry.  Granted, if the object you desire to paint has been spray-painted for years, you will not have anything to worry about. If the object was just recently painted, it must not only be dry to the touch but also be fully cured in order to have any luck with brush painting over the spray paint.

Step 1:  Lightly sand

The first step in getting your object ready for brush painting is to lightly sand it down.  Use 100 grit sandpaper so there is something for the new paint to stick to.

Step 2:  Clean

Next, you will want to clean the object with a damp rag.  Wipe the entire surface down to remove any residue that has been left.  Allow drying thoroughly.

Step 3:  Paint

Once it has been fully dried you are free to use any paint and brush you desire.

One tip we have always used to get a good finish with brush painting is to use a high-quality angled brush.  You must apply thin, even coats of good quality paint. Using a foam roller with rounded edges will assist in filling in large, flat areas quicker.  The rounded edges aid in preventing roller marks. Use an angled brush to paint detailed molding or grooves and to touch up any drips that may occur with a roller.

Priming your surface

The best thing you can do if you are brush painting an object that has been spray-painted first is to prime it.  As stated above, you will want to make sure that the surface is smooth to paint.  If there is any dirt or grime on the surface, your paint will not adhere properly.

Many individuals do not like to use a primer.  But it is a good idea to use one.  If you will be painting a light color over dark spray paint, you should plan on using a white primer. This will allow you to avoid using too many layers of paint, which can look caked on.   If too many layers are applied, it can crack or peel.


If you have furniture that needs a touch-up, it may not be feasible to use spray paint.  Or perhaps you simply do not care for the fumes that spray paint gives off, so you refuse to use it.  Whatever your reason is for not wanting to use spray paint is fine as you can easily paint over spray paint with other kinds of paint.  Just make sure that any paint on what you are painting is fully cured before you start the brush painting project and you will be good to go!