How To Paint Plastic Coffee Containers? Best Painting Method

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You may have noticed that many cafes are now using plastic containers to hold their ground coffee beans instead of the traditional paper or metal canisters. Instead of throwing it away after using, you can paints it for repurpose that is environmentally friendly. If you wonder how to paint plastic coffee containers that they don’t crack and peel, this blog post will show you how!

See also:

  1. How To Paint A Coffee Table To Look Vintage – 8 Amazing And Successful Steps.
  2. How To Convert A Coffee Table Into An Ottoman – 7 Easy And Amazing Steps.
  3. How To Reuse Coffee Containers? 10 Amazing Ideas.

Choose Painting Plastic Containers Method

Painting plastics like plastic coffee containers is tricky since paint can drip, pool, and blotch; once dried, it quickly peels off. Spraying paint on them instead, however, gives a smoother, stick better, and resist peeling better.

Paint brushed onto plastics can smear or create brush marks. Painting with spray paint will make things smoother, drip-free –no worries of brush marks. If you are painting less than 25 square feet, then it is best to use spray paint. The best paint to use is one that has been specially formulated for plastic surfaces.

You should use spray paint to painting plastic
You should use spray paint to painting plastic

How To Paint Plastic Coffee Containers?

1. Clean the Surface of the Plastic

Using a combination of warm water and a little dish soap to scrub the plastic with a rag or sponge. Rinse the surface with cool, clean water to remove all suds left from cleaning.

2. Sand Glossy Surfaces

Since most plastic is glossy, sanding is then an essential step. To ensure that the paint adheres, it should be applied to rougher matte surface plastics rather than glossy plastics. Sand all surfaces to be painted with 180- or 220-grit sandpaper. Plastic is soft so you should do the sanding by hand.

NOTE: When using a sandpaper, be very careful not to excessively sand the plastic, as this may create enough friction to melt the plastic. This is especially important when using an electric sander on plastic. And press too hard also can scratch the surface. 

3. Wipe Down the Plastic With Mineral Spirits

Cleansing the container with mineral spirits or isopropyl alcohol will remove any plastic dust that was created from sanding.

Wipe the container with a clean, wet rag, so that any residual residue can be removed. You may need to do it two or three times before you are finished wiping the container down.

4. Spray the First Coat of Paint

Keeping your patience while spraying paint plastic. Unlike wood, paper, or cardboard that porous and absorbs paint, plastic is an entirely different material to work well with laying down one or two coats.

Generally, you’ll need to shake the can before starting thoroughly. Then test-spray off into the air, on a piece of cardboard, newspaper or your drop cloth until the paint sprays freely and finely.

Spray paint at a distance of 8 to 12 inches away from the plastic, be tilted at about a 45-degree angle. Spray a light, thin layer of paint. With this first layer, your object should not be fully covered that will usually lead to drips.

5. Apply Subsequent Coats of Paint

Give the first layer at least two hours in a warm, dry environment to dry before adding the next one.

It should take multiple thin, even layers to refresh your item’s color without over-painting.

Allow your item to dry completely before displaying or using.


What kind of paint do you use on plastic containers?

Use paints that are specifically formulated to adhere to plastics. There are several available on the market such as Krylon Fusion for Plastic, Valspar Plastic Spray Paint , and Rust-Oleum Specialty Paint For Plastic Spray. Before painting with regular spray paint, it is recommended to prime the plastic.

Can you use acrylic paint on plastic materials?

Yes, but you need to prepare the surface before painting it with acrylic paints properly and you have to seal the paint after painting as well. Acrylic paint is not generally the best choice for painting plastic items even if you use sealers and primers, the paint will come off eventually

Can you store paint in a plastic coffee container?

You can reuse a plastic coffee container to hold small amounts of paint. Many come with a plastic snap-on lid to keep the paint from drying out, and a built-in handle that doubles as a handy holder for your paintbrush.


After painting your coffee containers, you can repurpose them. You are not only saving the environment but also making many useful things for your home.

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