My preference for sealing painted rocks has been brush-on products - e.g., Delta Ceramcoat Interior/Exterior Varnish - because I don't like the fumes, mess and danger of a spray-on sealer.
But, recent doodle, tangle and mandala projects using art pens could not be sealed with my usual brush-on sealer. The product would react to the pens and smear my designs.
Then I discovered Krylon Low Odor Clear Finish and gave it a try.
I found the low odor sealer at my local Hobby Lobby in the art supply section (not the spray paint aisle) for $7.99 for an 11-ounce can. The choices were matte and gloss finish and I purchased the matte. With my 40% off Hobby Lobby coupon, the price was less than $5.
I still didn't want the mess of a spray getting all over the place, so I used a box for my "spray station."
- The box is lined with parchment paper so the rocks won't stick to the bottom
- The box has a cover so I can close it and avoid dirt and dust sticking to the art rocks while the sealer is drying
- The handles on the side of the box allow air to circulate when the cover is closed
- The box is deep enough so the spray is somewhat contained
I sprayed a light, thin coat of the low odor sealer and was pleased with the results. The fumes were definitely lower than normal spray-on sealers and the design on my rock did not blur.
- It is important to spray a light, thin coat on stones decorated using artist's pens otherwise the design may blur
- Clean the nozzle per the can's instructions otherwise it may drip and ruin your design
- Use in a well-ventilated area
- The spray sealer is dry to the touch in 15 minutes and the rock can be handled in 3 hours
- This is still a dangerous product, take care with usage and storage
The combination of the low odor spray finish and my sealing station solved my problem of a fume and mess-free alternative to brush-on sealers.
How I Fixed Two Stones Ruined by a Spray-On Sealer
- Low Odor Clear Finish (matte) at Hobby Lobby
- Low Odor Clear Finish (gloss) at Hobby Lobby
- Krylon Low Odor Clear Finish Product Page
- Brush-on Sealers for Painted Rocks