Easy DIY Hydro Flask painting ideas and painting /sealing tips and tricks.
If you love painting AND love your Hydro Flask water bottle, you’ve come to the right place! In this ultimate guide, I will go through my entire process on how I paint and seal my Hydro Flask, including 5 easy Hydro Flask painting ideas (that beginners can tackle!).
Get ready to transform your plain ol’ Hydro Flask (or any stainless steel water bottle) into an inspiring piece of art that you’ll love drinking your H20 from…
It might even encourage you to drink more water!
You can also gift these painted DIY beauties -which is what I did with most of mine. I custom painted them as Christmas presents. It makes a special and super unique gift idea!
If you’re looking for a nifty alternative to a painted Hydro flask make sure you check out my 64Hydro water bottle review post. You can check out their other bottle selections on their site (their images and bottle art are gorgeous).
What is a Hydro Flask
Hydro Flasks are reusable stainless steel insulated water bottles, made out of premium steel. They have been around since 2009, but their popularity have gained traction over the past couple of years.
And no wonder…
Their durable, double-wall, vacuum insulated stainless steel bottle design makes your ice-cold water stay ice cold for around 24 hours and your hot liquids for about 12 hours.
Plus you’ll be helping the environment by keeping plastic bottles out of the landfill!
They also come in many different sizes (I have the wide mouth 32-ounce /1-liter version, like this one on Amazon).
I like the 1-liter size since my new year’s goal is to track my daily water consumption.
The assortment of Hydro Flask colors is also quite impressive. From frost to lilac, watermelon, jade and beyond, the colors are fresh, vibrant and gorgeous!
The Hydro Flasks’ plain design makes it a perfect project to customize. Some people add Hydroflask vinyl stickers, like these, but recently, DIY Hydro Flask painting has exploded in popularity too.
Can you Paint your Hydroflask?
Yes, you can.
You might be wondering though, which type of paint to use on your Hydro Flask.
You can paint your Hydro Flask with water-based acrylic paints. Acrylic paints become water-resistant once dry – but you still need to seal them to make sure the pain doesn’t chip and peel.
Read below to find out how I sealed them.
What Kind of Paint do you use on a Hydro Flask?
Regular Acrylic (water-based) paint works best for painting your Hydro Flask. I personally used Liquitex BASICS paints ( I used paints from this set in particular) and they worked beautifully.
The Liquitex paints are thick and pigmented and which helped give solid coverage and vibrant colors on both light and dark-colored bottles.
Although I used Liquitex, you can technically use any brand of acrylic paints- just keep in mind some thinner paints(like the dollar store kind) might need extra coats on darker colored water bottles (to get similar coverage).
I briefly tried Watercolor paints, but they did NOT work well and I had to wash it off and start fresh.
Learn from my mistake, and use Acrylics!
How to Seal Paint on Hydro Flask
After painting your Hydro Flask, you might be asking yourself how to keep paint on your Hydro Flask from chipping and peeling. Without sealing it, the water-based acrylic paint will chip and peel off-pretty easily in fact (tested it!).
To seal the paint on your Hydro flask, you’ll need a good water-resistant sealant. I personally use dishwasher-safe Mod Podge on my designs (read step by step tutorial below, on how to apply), so that I don’t have to worry about the paint chipping or rubbing off when dropped, dinged or washed.
This is the one I bought, on Amazon.
The instructions on how to seal your metal hydro flask water bottle in is the tutorial below.
Painted Hydro Flask Ideas
Now that you’re armed with what type of paint to use and what to seal it with, you can have some fun and get your project started!
If you know what you want to paint, awesome! I would absolutely love to see your finished bottle art, on my facebook page…
If you don’t know what to paint, check out my 5 DIY Hydro Flask paint ideas and designs below.
They’re all beginner level, meaning you don’t have to be Bob Ross to make ’em 🙂
Painting Butterflies On Your Hydroflask
Painting butterflies on your Hydroflask is an easy and beautiful idea. From monarch butterflies to plus morpho butterflies and beyond there are so many options.
Painted Hydroflask Flowers
Flowers are not only easy to paint but they’ll look so fresh and happy on your water bottle.
And you can play around with style and colors. From whimsical to abstract, to hyper-realistic- pick your style and go for it!
I personally like the whimsical/abstract style. It’s more fun (IMO) and less stress getting it perfect- and very forgiving- especially for beginners.
1. Painted Hydro Flask Sunflower
Paint cheerful and bright sunflowers on your bottle- for a simple, easy painting idea- plus who doesn’t love sunflowers!?
Sunflowers are a great option for beginner painters too..
First, trace the design onto your Hydroflask with a pencil, then follow my how to paint a Sunflower tutorial to paint 3 big bright sunflowers onto your Hydroflask.
Here’s a shot of the drawing/painting process
Here’s after painting it…
2. Painted Hydroflask Lavender Flowers
For this design, you don’t need to trace the design first. It’s more of an abstract interpretation of lavender flowers, so the more the random the better (works best when you don’t preplan your painting).
I’ve got the painting process covered in my how to paint lavender flowers tutorial.
Also if you like the lavender design, check out my rock painting post and learn how to paint lavender flowers (or any design) onto a simple rock!
Back to the Hydroflask painting tutorial. Here are some process shots…
Here are the finished lavender flowers on the bottle
3.Painted Hydroflask Abstract Whimsical Roses
I was inspired by one of my art journal pages I made recently of abstract whimsical roses. I first traced the roses onto my Hydro Flask with a pencil, then used some gorgeous color muted rosy colored.
Color tip: To create the muted colors I just mixed some light portrait pink (my favorite pink paint), with each color I used.
Doing this will tone down each color to a nice muted color that has a slight pink undertone (I like to call them elegant pastels!). Plus your roses will look more cohesive because they will all have the same undertone.
Here’s a process shot…
Here are the finished painted roses on my Frosted Blue Hydro Flask…
I loved this design so much, I painted the same rose-y design on a black Hydroflask! I gave this one to my mother for Christmas, since punny enough her name is Rose 🙂
4. Painted Hydroflask Flower Bouquet
This bouquet of different types of flowers includes Hydrangeas, Anoemies, Roses, and Wildflower Forget Me Not’s. And… it was super fun to paint.
You can add your own fave flower to the bunch. OR if you are gifting it, add the person’s favorite flower to the bottle- it will make for an extra special gift!
This one was gifted to my mother-in-law who loves bright colorful flowers.
Here’s a process picture along with my art journal page that inspired this art.
And the finished bottle…
How to Paint and Seal your Hydro Flask
Make a custom painted Hydro Flask that you can use yourself, gift away or even makes a great craft to sell!
- HydroFlask water bottle
- Liquitex acrylic paints in a variety of colors (or any acrylic paints)
- Paintbrushes (small and medium sizes)
- Dishwasher-safe Mod Podge
- Trace your flower design onto your Hydro Flask using a pencil.
- Paint the biggest flower first with your favorite color. The reason why I did this, is because the biggest fower will be your focal point, and if you paint that first you can adjust the other flower colors as you go, to make sure it doesn't detract from the focal flower. In terms of color choices, there is no rhyme or reason why I picked the colors in each flower. I just grabbed a few colors that inspired me at the moment and went with it.
- Paint the flowers around the focal flower next.
- Continue to fill in the flowers with your choice of paint
- Finish up by adding some detail leaves and vines throughout the bouquet and at the ends, to give a decorative design
- Let your paint dry on your Hydro Flask overnight- to make sure all the paint has fully dried, before sealing it. The following day, using a dry medium size paintbrush or foam brush, add a coat of Dishwasher-Safe Mod Podge (not the regular Mod Podge). Let this coat dry for 1-2 hours. Add 2 more coats letting each coat dry for the 1-2 hours in between.
- Your Hydro Flask Art is done! While the Mod Podge takes 28 days to cure, you can use it after a day or two, just make sure you gently hand wash and only put in the dishwasher after the full 28 days.
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
ROYAL BRUSH RFOMW-3P Foam Brush, 3-Pack
Mont Marte Art Paint Brushes Set for for Watercolor, Acrylic, Oil 15 Different Sizes for Artists, Adults & Kids, Black
Mod Podge Dishwasher Safe Waterbase Sealer, Glue and Finish (16-Ounce), CS25139 Gloss
Liquitex BASICS 48 Tube Acrylic Paint Set, 22ml
Hydro Flask Water Bottle - Stainless Steel & Vacuum Insulated - Wide Mouth with Leak Proof Flex Cap - 32 oz, Frost
Thursday 29th of December 2022
Do you apply the mod Podge just over the painted part or the whole water bottle?
Friday 30th of December 2022
Hi Jenni! Great question - I personally apply it all over the bottle. Enjoy painted it and hope that helps.
Tuesday 20th of September 2022
I used the Dishwasher ModPodge but got lines from my brush. Any suggestions on how to avoid those and get a smooth finish on my next one? Would rubbing on with a rubber gloved finger work? Thanks for your thoughts on this.
Thursday 3rd of November 2022
Great question! I haven't used the rubber glove method and would worry that the Mod Podge wouldn't go on in an even coat (but if you have an extra mug to practice on, it might be good to try it out). Another thing to try is applying a thinner coat of Mod Podge on your next mug, the thicker coats sometimes cause streaking.
Hope that helps and good luck!
Monday 4th of April 2022
Would this method work on plastic bottles too? Or is the metal important?
Tuesday 5th of April 2022
Hi Jess, I haven't personally painted on plastic water bottles, but I was researching a bit this looked like a good guide to follow if you want to paint on plastic water bottles (including sealer which is important). Hope it helps! https://artradarjournal.com/2021/12/04/what-paint-can-i-use-on-plastic-bottles/#:~:text=among%20paint%20brands.-,What%20Kind%20Of%20Paint%20Will%20Stick%20To%20A%20Plastic%20Water,products%20available%20on%20the%20market.
Thursday 15th of July 2021
Hi Jasmine 😊 Love your post. I'm trying to paint my hydro flask with liquitex and the same sealer and the paint doesn't fix. Is the second layer I applied and still the pint is getting off when I make a little pressure with my nail. What do you recommend?? I'm using a foam brush and applying a very thin layer of sealer but doesn't work.
Thank you Best Alicia
Saturday 17th of July 2021
Hi Alicia, Did you make sure the paint is fully dried before applying the sealer? Also the sealer needs to dry fully (the instructions on the Mod Podge bottle says about 28 days- although I felt my bottles were good enough to go after 2-3 days. Also, out of curiosity what type and brand of paint are you using?
How To Use Acrylic Paint: The Ultimate Guide for Beginners
Sunday 12th of January 2020
[…] project I did recently was paint on reusable water bottles and gave them away as Christmas gifts! You can get even more creative and find other things to […]