How to Make Oil Paint Dry Faster With Liquin

Updated on February 1, 2018
Azure11 profile image

Marian (aka Azure11) has been working as a professional artist since 2006 and has sold over 600 paintings in that time.

How to Make Oil Paints Dry Faster

I have worked with oil paint for quite a while now. Although I like doing so, the one frustration I have is the long dry time. There are a lot of variables that you need to take into account for the dry time, some of which include:

  • Atmospheric conditions.
  • Color and quality of the paints.
  • The mediums you use with the paint.

It can take between 1-5 days for oil paint to be dry to the touch, or possibly even longer in some cases. To be honest, it's a bit of a double-edged sword as the reason I like oil paints, apart from the vibrancy and variety of oil paint you can get, is the fact that they do not dry immediately like acrylic paints. This means you can keep working with the paint over a period of hours or even days.

However, there are occasions when you want to do all you can to make the paint dry more quickly without compromising the painting's quality. For instance, an extreme example was when I created an oil painting that actually took three months to dry. It was in oranges and yellows, and from experience, I find that these colors take longer to dry than say, the blue derivatives. The temperature and humidity were relatively high at that time so that would likely have been another factor.

When I need to make oil paint dry faster I will use a medium that I add in small quantities to the oil paint that does speed up the drying time of the paint. That quick drying medium is called Liquin, and it is made by Winsor & Newton (I'm not aware if it is a brand name and only sold by Winsor & Newton or whether it is sold by other people but that is the only brand I have seen it sold under and this is the one I use).

  • You can just add a dash of Liquin to your palette and add it in gradually as you pick up the paint. There are a couple of varieties of Liquin that you can buy; I generally use the standard Liquin Original, but you can also get Liquin Fine Detail for more detailed artwork. As most of my work is big and abstract, the Liquin Original is fine for the oil painting that I do.

I used Liquin on this painting which made blending easier and it dried much more quickly. painting (c) Azure11, 2008
I used Liquin on this painting which made blending easier and it dried much more quickly. painting (c) Azure11, 2008

Tips to Use Liquin for Shorter Dry Times

  • When using Liquin, do not mix too much of it with the paint - you only need a small amount. I'd suggest about 1 part Liquin to 4 parts paint. You can experiment with different ratios, but don't use too much!
  • Using Liquin gives you more free-flowing brush strokes and also improves transparency. This is one reason not to use too much, especially if you want the paint to remain more opaque.
  • A painting that might take 3-5 days to dry will likely be dry in 24 hours or even less with Liquin. In some cases, I have had oil paint dry in a few hours, making it ready for me to layer on the next coat.
  • Liquin is prone to changing color in the bottle as it ages, and it will go a kind of purple-brown color in time. However, it can still be used when it has changed color so don't worry about this development.
  • There is a possibility that Liquin can bring on an allergic reaction, so check by testing a small amount on your hand or somewhere inconspicuous before using it.
  • I've heard people say using this product in your paint makes the paint continue drying and causes it to crack over time. However, I have never found this to be the case.

Another painting where Liquin was used to make the paint dry more quickly (c) Azure11
Another painting where Liquin was used to make the paint dry more quickly (c) Azure11

Questions & Answers

  • Is there a varnish that I can put over oil, and if so, when do I put it on?

    Yes, you can get a special oil varnish in most art shops, but you need to wait until the painting is completely dry. This could be between 6-12 months after painting it!


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • Azure11 profile imageAUTHOR

      Marian L 

      21 months ago from UK

      Hi Linda. No, you don't need to.

    • profile image


      21 months ago

      Do you need to use retouch varnish after your painting has dried before you add the next layer?

    • profile image

      SUBHAS SG 

      2 years ago

      its really very informative to beginners

    • markomitic profile image


      8 years ago from Toronto

      Great tips. Thank you very much. I will implement it to my own tricks when I am painting. Been painting for a long time now. Amazing hub. Keep up the good work.

    • Azure11 profile imageAUTHOR

      Marian L 

      9 years ago from UK

      Thanks very much!

    • joyfuldesigns profile image

      Valerie Garner 

      9 years ago from Washington State

      Great information here, and I love your painting.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)