How to Pour Chalk Style Paint without the Mess

Learn how to pour chalk style paint without the mess! Here I share three different ways you can keep your quart-size cans clean and avoid that dreaded gunky edge (technical term) on the can.

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Pink chalk paint being poured into a cup.

With my full-size gallons of paint I love grabbing my handy lid pour-er thingy . Apparently, it’s called a “Pour and Store Lid”–good to know. It works great for keeping my can clean and makes pouring out more paint a breeze. But for tiny quart cans? It was time to get creative.

After starting to write this post, I did a little digging to see if they made those “Pour and Store” lids for quart-size cans. And, come to find out that they do! You can grab the lids on Amazon, or it sounds like they are even less expensive locally at Lowe’s.

I think I’ll add one to my collection next time I stop by a Lowe’s (I didn’t find any on the Home Depot website), but in the meantime, here’s my quick no-mess tip for pouring chalk paint from a quart-size can–no special lid required!

I have also seen this tip on Pinterest, but the photo I saw didn’t link out to anyone’s website. If you use this method too, drop me a comment so we know!

Why bother pouring chalk style paint into a separate container? Before I use my chalk style paints, I nearly always transfer some to a separate cup or container. This helps my main can avoid contamination. This is especially good to do when painting old pieces that are hard to get completely clean.

Also, if you plan on thinning down your paint with water, moving it to a separate container will protect the full container. It will also allow you to easily add more paint juuuust in case you were to add too much water.

How to Pour Chalk Paint Without the Mess

You can see my can in the photo has a bunch of dried paint around the edge. That’s from all the times I poured it without this method!

The nice thing about this method is that it only requires a small piece of tinfoil. And, in addition to keeping your can clean, it also prevents dried paint (from previous pours) from mixing into the fresh paint as you pour.

  1. Open your can of chalk paint. Grab a small piece of tinfoil and press it around the top of the can. You only need a few inches of foil to have enough space to pour. Make sure it’s secure.
  2. Pour your paint slowly into the container of your choice.
  3. Remove the foil carefully. The foil will have some paint on it and I like to use my paint brush to grab the excess paint and brush it off into my new container. Toss the foil, close your can tightly and you are ready to paint!
A step by step collage of pouring chalk paint out of a can.

One more method to try

Here’s another trick I use. If you have disposable plastic syringes on hand for whatever reason, you can also use those to get paint out of a can with little mess. It’s maybe a little silly, but can be great when you just need a small amount of paint.

Just use the syringe to extract the amount of paint you need and then wash it well and dry to re-use again (if you want).

And there you have it–three quick suggestions for pouring chalk paint out of a quart can without the mess. Happy painting!

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