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Are Acrylic Prints Waterproof?


acrylic photo print mounted to wall

Like the photograph in this image? A coastal storm in Perth, Western Australia. You can buy this print here.


If you’re looking for modern & contemporary wall art, or a fabulous & unique way to display your photographs, acrylic photo prints may be what you’re looking for.


Because the photographic image is mounted behind a layer of clear acrylic, they produce a depth & colour vibrancy that doesn't just make acrylic stand out from other print options, it also means they’re highly durable & long lasting.


But are acrylic prints waterproof? Yes, they are. There’s 2 methods for producing an acrylic photo print & both are highly water & moisture resistant. In extreme circumstances an acrylic print may suffer water damage, but for all intentional purposes an acrylic print is ideal for any wet area.

Why Are Acrylic Prints Waterproof?


It’s basically because of the material used, which is a type of plastic, sometimes referred to as Plexiglass.


Also the printing processes used help to seal & protect the final image.


There’s 2 ways to produce a finished acrylic print.


1. Face Mount - A face mounted print offers the better image quality & is the most widely offered option.


The image is 1st printed onto a high quality photographic paper, sometimes this can be a metallic paper which produces further depth & vibrancy.


Then the photograph is mounted to the back of the sheet of acrylic, so when viewed from the front, you’re seeing it through a layer of refractive clear acrylic.


It’s this that produces the unique depth they’re famous for.


Then a backing substrate is used to seal in the photograph.


2. Direct Print - As the name suggests, the photograph is printed as a mirror image directly to the back of the acrylic sheet.


So once again, when viewed from the front, you’re looking through a layer of acrylic.


Different backing substrates can be used to create a different final look.


Protected by a layer of acrylic, the photograph can handle high humidity & direct contact with water.


Which print option is best?


This article explores face mount vs direct print in more detail.


Which Type Of Acrylic Print Is More Waterproof?


To be honest, in most normal applications & environments, both are going to fare as well as each other.


But if you want to be particular, direct printing may just win by a hair.


This is because with the face mounted print, should any moisture get past the sealed backing substrate, mould or mildew could develop on the photographic paper.


Keeping Your Print In Top Condition


Acrylic prints are simple to maintain.


Usually just a regular dusting is all that’s required.


But occasionally you may wish to clean any fingerprints or smudges.


If your print is going to be hung in an area where it may be subject to grease, as in a kitchen, it may need wiping down.


Also homes with wood burners or cigarette smoke can have an accumulative effect.


These prints are very long lasting & highly durable.


The image is UV protected by the acrylic & unlike glass, it won’t shatter if dropped.


But acrylic isn’t scratch resistant, so don’t use abrasive cloths or cleaners & stay away from any solvents.


Any glass cleaner is fine, or for more stubborn marks, a mild detergent & a soft cloth should do the trick.

 

Related Article:

How Long Do Acrylic Prints Last?

Can You Hang Acrylic Prints Outdoors?

 



Final Thoughts


A long lasting, durable print with amazing image quality & a wonderfully modern appeal .. what more can you ask for?


Here's a complete guide if you'd like to learn more about this print medium.


Acrylic prints are a fabulous way to display family photos, landscapes, coastal or any other image you’d wish to add to your home décor.


Being waterproof makes them ideal for bathrooms, mudrooms or other areas of the home where a canvas or mounted print may get damaged.


I hope this article was of value to you & remember .. sharing is caring.






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