Is Acrylic Paint Safe for Baby Foot and Handprints?

Randy Charles
Randy Charles
Professional Painter

Hi, I’m Randy Charles, the creator and chief editor of this site Paintcentric. I’m a businessman now by profession, but I used to work as...Read more

Painting baby feet is way for new parents to have fun and spend time with their bundle of joy and make adorable keepsakes. However, questions arise as to which type of paint to use, considering how soft and delicate the skin is. Is it safe to use acrylics to make a baby footprint art project?

It is not safe for you to use acrylic paint on your baby for foot and hand prints. Acrylic paints are perfect on canvas, paper, ceramics/pottery, wood, fabric, and other products, but it is never a safe option for your baby’s skin, because it contains chemicals too strong for contact with your baby’s skin.

Considering your baby can easily put their hands on the mouth or some of the delicate areas of the body, it is never advisable to use acrylic paint on your baby.

What Type Of Paint Is Safe For Babies?

As mentioned above, acrylic craft paints could cause a skin irritation or reaction. Likewise, paints used for walls and outdoor painting should be avoided, not just because of the chemicals, but the VOCs could affect the child’s breathing.

What Type Of Paint Is Safe For Babies

The good news is there are a variety of safe choices for people to use on their baby.

Finger paint

Finger paint is a fun and unique way for your toddler to express her artistic talents. Due to its ingredients, finger paints themselves don’t pose any special health hazards (aside from the occasional mess on the floor), making it a safe paint.

Still, not all paints are created equal, so it’s important to find the kind that’s best suited to your baby’s age and activity level, whether painting on your baby’s foot or having your child paint for themselves.

Tempera paint

Tempera paints are ideal for small children as they is non-toxic and washable. Tempera paint is made of pigments (coloring agents) mixed with either casein (a milk derivative) or soap, making it safe for baby footprints.

It is a vibrant paint, and kids love the endless possibilities Tempera provides when different colors are mixed. These paints can be used in many ways and are great for anything from feet painting to finger-painting.

Another feature is its great staying power. Its compounds keep it from fading easily. It makes Tempera perfect for painting on a variety of materials, such as paper, cardboard, stone, and canvas. Many artists prefer tempera as their main medium because it is opaque and resists fading and weathering.

Activity paint

Another paint you can consider using on your babies is the activity paint. The paint is common during the festive period, and you mostly see it on kids’ faces and hands with different decoration styles.

To use on your baby, you should check the label and all that is written on the paint before using it. Some manufacturer instructs how to use it and ways to clean it off the body.

Watercolor paint

Without a doubt, watercolor paint is the best to consider for your baby. I grew up knowing that watercolor paint is not toxic and safe to use for all kinds of applications.

Apart from the fact that it is non-toxic, the paint can easily wash off. All you need to do is get your baby’s hand or feet into any bowl filled with water and gently wash off the paint. It is as simple as that. It is the common paint you see on babies’ faces during the Christmas season.

DIY Paint

You can also choose to make your own paint. Check out the link below for a step-by-step tutorial.

Is Acrylic Paint Safe For Baby Foot And Handprints?

On all grounds, I would not suggest or advise that you use acrylic paint for your handprint painting. Kids from age five and above might have a skin texture that can stand up against the chemical in the paint even if it is said to be non-toxic acrylic paint, but it still is recommended to use the paint types listed above.

Is Acrylic Paint Safe For Baby Foot And Handprints

However, babies’ skin is delicate and might not handle the effect that comes from acrylic paint. If you ever want to use acrylic paint on your baby, you should ensure it doesn’t stay long on the foot or hand. You should wash it off immediately to avoid any complications in the future.

Overall, it is not safe to use on your babies. Other paints are safe to use for your baby’s handprint art. You just need to get to the paint store and request ones you can use on your babies without any hassles or issues.

How To Do Baby Handprints And Footprints With Paint At Home?

The perfect way you can go about painting your baby’s hand prints at home is to have all necessary things set aside with a specific place for the experiment. The ground likely gets dirty due to spills or splashes of the paint. So, you should get it done in your garage or an open place.

How To Do Baby Handprints And Footprints With Paint At Home

Mix your paint

The first step is to mix your paint and ensure it is ready for the experiment or painting task.

Get a bowl and pour the paint

The next task is to get a bowl that is big enough to accommodate your baby’s hands and foot. You should pour the paint there and get ready for the next task.

Get the canvas or paper prepared

If your primary aim of painting your baby’s hand and foot is to get the handprints and footprints, you should get your canvas ready or the paper/cardboard you intend to frame.

Insert the foot and/or hand in the paint

The next task requires lots of patience because it can be quite hard sometimes to control the movement of babies.

You should carry your baby and gently immerse the hands in the paint while you wear gloves. Remove your baby hand from the bowl of paint and stamp the hands on the canvas for some minutes. Try to apply even pressure to the surface so the hand and foot creases still show through.

After that, you should remove the hand from the canvas or paper. You should do the same for your baby foot. By now, you should have the baby’s hand print and the footprint on your page.

Wash off

The last task for you is to wash off the paint from your baby’s hands and foot. If you have any stains on you during the process, you should wash yourself too and keep all paints away from your baby.

How Do I Remove Paint From My Baby’s Skin?

The process of removing paint from your baby’s skin is so easy. Just follow the step below.

How Do I Remove Paint From My Baby'S Skin

Get a bowl with warm water

You just get a bowl with lukewarm water. You should immerse the hand and foot of your baby and wash off the paint from the skin. You can use a soft brush for paints that are stubborn to come off the skin. Also, you might choose to use baby soap if there is a need for it.

Use a clean towel

Once you are through with washing off the paint from your baby skin, you should wipe dry the hands and foot using clean towels. After that, you can apply a small amount of baby lotion or a bit of baby oil on the hand.

Final Thoughts

Is acrylic paint safe for baby foot and handprints? Acrylic paint is most often used for art and crafts. However, it should not be considered for a baby’s handprint and footprints. It contains some chemicals that are not safe for babies even when claimed that it is non-toxic.

The best decision as a concerned parent is to get a paint that is baby safe. With some planning, you will be able to enjoy both the process and the outcome of your handprint craft.

Randy Charles
Randy CharlesProfessional Painter

Hi, I’m Randy Charles, the creator and chief editor of this site Paintcentric. I’m a businessman now by profession, but I used to work as a painter earlier in my professional career. There is simply nothing about painting that I didn’t do as a painter. From painting a fridge to a multi-storied building, I left nothing. I retired from my painting job in the mid of 2018 due to back arthritis problems.

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