Is Milk Paint Safe?
Yes! Milk Paint is considered 100% safe and made from natural ingredients! It’s a powdered, no VOC’s product that can be traced back all the way to ancient carvings and art. It is considered safe for children’s furniture, painting projects indoors, and use during pregnancy.
It is made up of Clay, Limestone, Chalk, Casein (milk protein) and Iron Oxides for pigments.
Legal disclaimer: Our milk paint is considered to be non-toxic, and according to U.S. Federal toxicity standards, no children’s warning is required. With that said, the potential effects of ingestion by an infant or child over a long period of time has not been studied, and we cannot guarantee that there is no potential for harm. Our milk paint is certainly low risk, and a far safer alternative than latex or acrylic paints, however we recommend that you do your own research before using it on objects that children will be in close contact with.
What is the difference between Milk Paint & Chalk Paint?
Milk Paint and Chalk paint are two totally different paints.
- Chalk paint comes pre mixed
- Chalk paint has great adhesion
- Chalk paint covers wood grain in most cases
- Chalk paint can be distressed
- Milk paint needs to be mixed with water
- Milk paint has great adhesion on raw wood that will never chip/peel or fade, and with bonding agent on previously finished surfaces
- Milk paint will show wood grain in most cases and can be used as stain
- Milk paint can be easily distressed and will resist some finishes giving you an authentic chippy effect.
Milk Paint is a Zero VOC paint that is completely biodegradable and non-toxic.
As you can see there are benefits to both! Milk paint can be thickened, thinned and adjusted to create a multitude stains and finishes.
What is the best way to mix the milk paint?
There are many ways to mix the milk paint, we offer you guidelines on how to mix it, what consistency to look for, however we encourage to always test out a small amount to make sure that you are happy with your mixture. Milk Paint can be a stain or a solid opaque paint depending on how much water you add. For a solid opaque look, you will mix as such: Mix 1 Part water to 1 Part Milk Paint powder. 1 Part can be anything you want, a tablespoon, a cup etc. It depends on the size of your project. Add water first, then add powder and mix with a whisk, electric milk frother, or blender. For a super smooth and fine finish using a blender will produce the best results, otherwise mixing with a frother or a whisk may take 1-2 minutes more mixing for a super fine mix. Your mixed Milk Paint should have a table cream consistency for opaque coverage. Once satisfied with your consistency, test out a small sample to see the coverage. If the sample is too thick ( opaque) then add more water, if the sample is too thin ( transparent) then add more powder. Adjust as required, and start painting!
How much coverage does 1 Quart give me?
This depends on the surface that you are painting on. If it is bare wood, porous, or whether it is a super shiny previously coated piece and requires the bonding agent. Typically 1 Quart of a very light white will cover aprx 50-70 sq ft, whereas a darker color will give you coverage of 70 + sq ft. Think of a large armoire, that would require 1 Quart. Or a dresser and two side tables, that would require 1 Quart.
My paint looks lumpy and uneven? Is it bad?
90% of the application issues lie within the mix. A good mix is key to a great finish. Make sure you are stirring your milk paint until most of the paint is dissolved. A mini whisk, milk frother, or blender are great tools for smooth mixes. Let you paint sit for a few minute after mixing to assure that all the limestone and clay dissolve. If you are painting a large project, stir your paint a few times to mix the pigments back up. Dip your brush all the way to the bottom of the container you mixed. The paint on the top will be thinner and more translucent, especially when you used a frother. *Little lumps can be smoothed out with a fine sand paper after it’s dry, and can lead to some really neat distressed/antiquing affects!
When should I use bonding agent?
When your surface is previously finished, or sealed. Milk paint will resist and chip if it cannot be absorbed. Your ratios of bonding agent can be adjusted as well depending on the amount of seal or shine your piece has. Simply add more or less.
How do I get the Chippy Look?
Whereas the Chippy Look is one of the most popular finishes for Milk Paint, sometimes and can be a bit tricky to accomplish!
Here are some things you want to consider:
The finish on which you are painting: is it sealed, shiny, or painted?
-Milk Paint will “resist” surfaces in which it can’t be absorbed. This resisting will create chips and flakes of milk paint. Where you need to be cautious it that your entire project can flake off if you don’t give it some “grip” in areas where you want it to stick. To achieve some “grip” do some sanding where you want adhesion, or do a coat with bonding agent on the areas you want more coverage, leaving areas that are ok to chip to be applied with no bonding agent.
-Milk paint on raw or very porous surfaces will be completely absorbed and will NOT Chip or flake.
How else can I get resist or chipping?
If you want some resist in certain areas we recommend using an advanced technique using the Hemp Oil or the Wax pucks. Simply apply the Oil generously in areas you want chipping. Apply your paint immediately over the oil. Your paint will look oily and will separate some on that area, let it be, don’t over work it. When the paint dries it will start to peel, and flake, giving you chipping in that area.
When using a wax puck- rub heavily on the edges, or areas you want resist. Paint directly over this. It will not allow the paint to adhere well. Then wipe, or gently sand over the waxed area so and see how easily the paint lifts right off!
Both give authentic aged patinas! We highly recommend taking a workshop from a trained MMSMP retailer in your area!
When my piece is really chipping, and I don’t want it to continue to chip, how do I seal it up?
Super chippy pieces will need a coat of polyacrylic. (water based) to prevent future chipping. Do not use hemp oil on these finishes as the oil will get it and cause it to continue to chip. If you had random or patchy chippiness, and it doesn’t seem to chip any more, our furniture wax will be a great top coat.
Different Top Coats
When should I use Hemp oil over Wax?
Hemp oil is great for projects that are outdoors, as once it cures it protects and wears beautifully in the elements. Wax however will break down, and emulsify in the heat. We do not recommend waxing pieces that will be in the heat or sun.
For an extra durable top coat, use a hemp oil layer, and let cure (until dry to the touch) and then apply wax on top. *remember wax over oil, never oil over wax!
What’s the difference between antiquing wax and furniture wax?
Antiquing wax has dark pigment in it that will age and darken your paint. Furniture wax will dry clear and give your colors the richness that they need after they dry.
Can I use all three top coats in a single project?
Yes you can use Antiquing wax, furniture wax, and hemp oil in a single project.
How do I create a crackle effect?
Paint your piece and apply direct heat immediately after coating (such as a blow dryer) to the areas you want to crackle. This is a really easy, natural crackle to achieve without having to use a crackle medium product.