Tinting latex

So I've got some Monster Makers 407 latex that I want to tint so I don't have to do as much painting. I used Trycolors to find the sort of colors I need based on my reference image, and it gave me a mixing ratio. I was wondering how I could translate that over into latex, as I know that the latex colorant is going to behave differently. The latex is white, so it's just the other colors that I need to add I think. On a similar note, does the latex dry to a different color like acrylic paints do or can I expect what I mix to look accurate?


  • Hi Akkeri,

    Latex can be tinted easily with acrylic paints.  The challenge with latex is that it starts bright white, but cures to a translucent yellow.  So if you mix the pigment and latex to exactly match your target color, the end product will be significantly darker.

    Here's my color matching technique for latex. 

    First I mix up a small batch of color that is the exact color I want (if I don't have another physical reference of the target color).  This will be used for comparison as the latex is mixed.  You can then paint that reference color onto any surface for later comparison.  (card stock, tung depressor, etc.)

    Next I'll take some white note cards or card stock and cut it into strips around an inch wide by 2-3 inches long.   Near one end I'll use a hole punch to punch a hole at the center. 

    Then I start mixing up my latex and color until it is several shades lighter than my target color, while keeping track of how much of each color is added.  (By weight, volume, or drop depending on the type of paint/pigment I'm using)  Once I have the color mixed in I'll paint the mix onto one of the card strips on the end that has the hole in it and dry it with a hair dryer.  The end result should be a square of color on the end of the strip with a hole right in the center of it, like a window.

    Once the latex is dries it will show its true color and the sample card can be held up to the reference.  The hole in the card allows you to compare the reference color to your mixed color.   From there I'll adjust the pigment and repeat the process until I'm done and have a batch of properly tinted latex as well as a written color formula.


  • Thanks so so much! That's a great idea and I'll give it a go. You said a couple of shades yeah? So I assume I'd add less of the black and brown given that they are darker. Thank you :)
  • It's hard to gauge exactly how much lighter you'll need the latex mix to be so it's the right color when it dries, but over time you'll get a feel for it.  My advice is to start light and darken slowly until you get the right match.  If you go too dark you'll have to add more light pigment to lighten things, which is not ideal.

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