Painting- do I paint oil based paint over water based or water based over oil?

Nina Adams Posted

do I paint oil based paint over water based or water based over oil

Jogn Cartman Jogn Cartman edited answer

I think you should paint oil based paint over water-based. I love all the drawings from oil because the look more alive. I have a lot of drawing tools from a great online store that I found recently. I even bought some paint pens for wood and I start to develop my skills of drawing on wood. I find it very beautiful and I feel like I’m closer to the nature. I would recommend you try it too.

arkiv2001 arkiv2001 edited answer

And when painting over 1 type of paint with another, first painting with a primer is a very good idea.

Ronald Bevill

You must first determine whether the already existing paint (that is, if you’re referring to paint on your walls) is oil-based or water-based. Put some alcohol on a rag that’s not the same color as the paint on your wall. Then try wiping the paint off with the rag. If the paint dissolves, it’s water-based paint. If it doesn’t, then the paint is oil-based.

Now as for your question on whether you can use water-based paint over oil or use oil-based paint over water-based paint: if you’re using water-based topcoat to paint over oil-based primer, then you can expect no trouble with the result. Note that you must make sure the primer is totally dry before applying your water-based topcoat. Same goes for applying water-based paint over oil-based paint. Just make sure you sanded the surface. Painting oil-based paint over water-based paint however can become problematic.

If you’re talking about paintings, as in the artworks done on paper or canvas, then the general rule most artists follow is that oil-based paints go with oil-based paints, and water-based paints go with water-based paints. You can learn more about oil paintings and other mixed media paintings by visiting