Can you mix primer with paint: the best guide for a paint job

Can You Mix Primer With Paint: Helpful Guide & Best Tips Paint FAQs

When people are painting walls or furniture, the question often arises, can you mix primer with paint color? More about mixing paint and primer will be discussed in this article.

can you mix primer with paint

Can you mix primer with paint color: primer features

Before proceeding to the study of the issue, can you mix primer with paint, you should familiarize yourself with the features of the primer.

This is the base coat that creates the right texture, so you can apply the regular paint. Different primer options are designed for certain surfaces on the market.

The primer can be used on wood, metal, concrete, or drywall. Using a white primer, you can seal the porosity of the original surface so that later the paint does not become stained.

The primer can be used both outside and inside.

Interior options provide additional paint adhesion. Products intended for use outside are aimed at preventing the growth of mold, as well as the loss of paint pigment.

Can you mix primer with paint: varieties of primers

There are many options for a primer. All of them differ in their pros and cons, as well as belonging to certain surfaces.

Oil primer

The oil-based primer is the best solution for both indoor and outdoor work. The primer must be diluted with white spirit. However, it helps prevent the flaking, blistering, and cracking of the paint.

The main disadvantage of such compositions is the slow rate of drying, as well as the content of volatile organic compounds that are harmful to health.

Latex primers

This option is characterized by rapid growth rates, as well as plasticity. It dissolves well in water and has a delicate texture.

Therefore, it is practically not covered with cracks and peeling. Once applied, latex paint is easy to clean.

The composition also contains a minimum amount of volatile organic compounds, so these compositions are environmentally friendly.

They can be used to work with drywall so that the surface of the walls is smoothed, and the seams are closed.


Such primer options are best used indoors. They help prevent stains. They are distinguished by additional adhesion and can work with different materials. Dry quickly.

The disadvantage of shellac is that they are not versatile, and can emit toxic fumes. However, they do not have to be treated with thinners or solvents.

Can you mix primer with paint: the difference between primer and paint

The main purpose of regular paint is to protect the structure of the surface, as well as to make it more attractive. Before painting, a primer is required, which provides a rough texture and the paint adheres better.

If you paint without a primer, the coating peels off. Adhesion is also negligible.

Some people tend to confuse paint and primer, believing that products can replace each other. Despite the external similarity, the means differ from each other.

The main difference is in the composition. Primers contain more resin. But the paint has a high content of pigments. Because the primer is high in resin, it helps to form a smooth texture, to which the paint is better fixed.

The paint is designed for brighter coverage. The composition also contains additives that increase the gloss of the coating, accelerate the rate of drying, and also prolong durability. The final paint color can be different, from shiny to matte.


A primer is a base coat that must be applied before painting. Paint is a decorative layer that is applied at the end of the work. You can apply them in the same way.


As already mentioned, the products differ in composition.

The paint consists of a solvent, a binder, and pigments.

The binder helps hold the pigments together. The solvent dilutes the pigments and holds them together.

The primer contains synthetic resin, additives, and a solvent. Primers do not contain pigments. However, some compounds contain polyethylene, which increases strength.


The main purpose of a primer is to prevent the paint from soaking into the base. This prevents the formation of an uneven layer. At the same time, it makes the adhesion of the paint topcoat coat and the surface better.

By using a primer, you can reduce your paint consumption, so repairs won’t be as costly. Paint makes surfaces more attractive.

paint prime

Does the primer lighten the paint?

If you add a primer to the paint, the multiple coats do not lose pigment. However, the surface to be painted appear finished. If you want to lighten the paint a little, it is better to use tinted primers.

When should primer be used?

There are several situations where the use of a primer is required.

If a dark surface needs to be painted with light tones

If the surface initially had a dark tint, it should first be treated with several layers of primer. Thanks to this, you do not have to apply a lot of expensive paint.

It is better to use tinted primers, which have an identical shade to the desired paint color.

If the surface is initially glossy

Surfaces that have a glossy texture do not adhere well to paint. Therefore, the finish peels off. If you apply several layers of primer, then the paint holds better. And you can cut down on work time.

Soiled surface

If the surface has been painted, then it makes sense to apply a primer before starting further work. This prevents stains from penetrating the painted surface.

Try to work with thick primers, which are produced by many companies, including Mix Kilz primer. This gives you the best results.

It also makes sense to use primers if you have a porous surface, or if the drywall has been degreased. If you plan to paint the walls in the same shade as the original, then a primer not be required.

Benefits of a combination of primer and paint

You need to understand that the procedure for mixing primer and paint has its pros and cons. It is better to study them in advance before using self-primer paint. This avoids problems in the future. If you mix primer with paint, you don’t have to prime the surface.

Given that blending helps achieve a thick texture, you don’t have to apply many layers to achieve even coverage. If you plan to work with stubborn surfaces, then an additional layer of primer should be applied.

If you mix the primer with the paint, you can save time on the job. However, it makes sense to use such a mixture if the surface has already been previously painted.

If you work with it outside, then due to the adverse effects of the environment, the coating peels off over time.

There are self-priming paints, which consist of a primer and paint, on the market. They are pricier when compared to conventional formulations. Over time, coatings peel off and crack, even if the composition is of high quality.

The difference between self-priming paint and homemade mix paint

You need to understand that there are differences between ready-made self-primer paint and a homemade combination of paint and primer. The main difference is in the composition. The primer is no ordinary white paint. If you mix paint and primer, you get a combination that’s like mixing orange soda and root beer.

Together, they are of excellent quality. But in combination, they may not work, and you just throw the mixture in the trash can.

Primer and paint differ in chemical formulas. Therefore, you cannot create self-priming paint. If you mix paint and primer, you get an incomprehensible mixture that does not color or prime the surface.

The advertising self-priming paint is a high-quality formulation in which a lot of solid particles are added. However, they do not have a primer. Therefore, they have a dense texture. As an alternative to primer, solid particles are added to them, which increases the cost.

Why can’t you mix primer and paint?

Initially, it may seem that mixing primer and paint is a fairly simple process. However, it is better not to do this for several reasons. More about mixing paint and primer will be discussed below.

Primers seal failure

One of the main purposes of a primer is to seal surfaces. This helps prevent stains from the old multiple coats. The primer helps to seal surfaces that have a porous texture. Therefore, the paint does not soak into wood or drywall.

During the mixing primer and paint, the sealing properties disappear. Because of this, spots and dark tones are shown. In this case, the mixture is absorbed into the surface, which causes uneven staining.

Paint fragility

For the paint to adhere well, the surface is pre-treated with a primer. It improves adhesion parameters. The primer has a sticky texture, so the paint sticks to it. If you mix primer and paint, the composition will not adhere well. Therefore, the work is much more difficult.

Uneven wall texture

If you plan to work with drywall, then priming is a mandatory step. If you apply the primer with a roller, then when it dries, it has a light texture.

If you mix primer and paint, you won’t get a good texture. This forms the patches that show through the last coat of paint.

Spots on the paint

As already mentioned, the primer has a sticky texture. If you mix it with paint, then the final coat cannot harden properly.

Because of this, dust and various contaminants accumulate on the final coat.

Due to the stickiness, it is much more difficult to clean the walls.

Low paint strength

The combination of primer and paint caused peeling and blisters on the walls. In this case, the coating wears off faster. And it does not matter at all whether you use oil or latex paint. Therefore, the coating is short-lived, and it often has to be updated.



When it comes to mixing paint with primer, many questions can be asked.

Is it okay to mix primer with paint?

Do not mix primer and paint. These agents differ in chemical composition and have different purposes. If you combine compounds, the properties of the paint and primer are destroyed. Therefore, the paint is worse fixed on the surface.

Can we add color to the primer?

When you’re doing finishing work, it’s a good idea to add some pigment to the primer so that it resembles the paint color you’ll be working with. This reduces the number of applied layers.

You can buy ready-made tinting primers. However, it is easier to do it yourself by dropping a little paint with a bright pigment into the primer.

What happens if you use primer as paint?

The main purpose of the primer is to smooth porous surfaces and create an additional sticky layer. Therefore, if you do not cover the primer with paint, the coating falls apart and takes on a chalky texture. Therefore, further, work is more complicated.

Does 2 in 1 paint and primer work?

If you plan to repaint surfaces that have already been painted, it is appropriate to use 2-in-1 paints. This guarantees denser coverage even if you apply one layer. This is very economical.


As you can see, mixing primer and paint is not recommended. Otherwise, the properties of both products deteriorate. It is better to work the old-fashioned way, first applying a primer, and then painting. You can also use self-priming paints for your paint job.

Also You Can Read About Paint And Primer In One

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My blog was created specifically to bring you the latest design trends. I graduated from Parsons School of Design in New York 10 years ago. I started drawing as a child. I was very fond of design and could even choose a style for my friends and relatives during the renovation.

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