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Which paints work best on metal?

I've become oddly obsessed with painting those little metal hair clips that snap open and closed. I began first just using nail polish. It's thick, but works well. I use a nail varnish to seal it, and they look awesome! But there's really not many options out there for nail polish, so I was wondering what other kinds of paint will adhere to the metal hair clips? Keep in mind the clips bend (slightly) when opened and closed. I'm currently experimenting with model-car enamel, which seems to be working. Any ideas? Also, what type of sealant should I use over top of whichever kind of paint that works on metal? ..Sorry if I'm confusing. It's like 4:30 in the morning. lol Thanks! LL

Re-design4 years ago
Go to a hardware store like Ace or Home Depot or Loews or whatever they are called where ever you live, and go to their paint area and look at the spray cans of paint. Most of them are for metal. Especially a brand named Krylon. If it says anything like "kills rust" then it's for metal. If you want to brush it on the enamel is good on metal. Talk to the person in charge of the paint department. Since the paint is not going to get high wear or exposure to bad conditions you won't need to sand the clip or primer the clip like you would if you were painting a car. But you might have to occasionally touch up a chip or two. If you're under 18 then you will have to get someone older than 18 to buy the spray paint if you choose to spray. Good luck and sounds like you should do an instructable on this.
lenalandmine (author) 4 years ago
Thanks, guys. I really appreciate it. Especially Burf and Re-design.

I'm painting more than just solid colors, so I do often prefer to brush paint rather than spray. The model paint, Testors, does indeed have a huge selection of impressive colors! I'm going to do a stress test with one painted with black from Testors by snapping it back and forth like you would for using it in your hair. I'm pretty confident it'll hold up :]

Again, thanks a bunch :]
ps. I'm 23, so I don't think I'll have a prob with buying spray paint. lol
acidbass4 years ago
big projects go to house of kolors that is the it is spelled small projects metal spray paint or any direct to metal paint pen like a car paint touch up pen
Kiteman4 years ago
There is a direct-to-metal paint sold in the UK called Hammerite, which comes in a variety of shades, and has a slightly "hammered" texture when dry (hence the name).

Most DIY stores sell it in small tins.
As stated, any paint that says it's made for metal will work and most of the outcome is due to proper prep. I would suggest small cans of Rustoleum in red, yellow, and blue,. These are primary colors By mixing them you would get the widest variety of shades (secondary colors) with the smallest investment. Also If you add white to a color you lighten it (pastels) and if you add black you darken it.
Burf4 years ago
For small projects, the enamel paints used for models will work just fine. Testor's is the brand I am familiar with but there are others that work just as well. Model paints come in an extraordinarily wide variety of colors and finishes. You can get either spray or brush-on and in matching colors, if you need both. One caution though, on metal, you'll need to give the metal a little texture before painting to get good adhesion. Rough it up with some 220 grit wet or dry sandpaper, clean it well and you should have no problems.
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