Acrylic Pouring Cells Without Silicone or Torching Recipe

I bought a new product, the Sargent Art Acrylic Gloss. My intention was to use it as a varnish and compare with a couple of other products as a finish for ceramic tiles, but this interesting product can also be used as a medium. It says “Mix with acrylic paint to increase gloss, ease paint flow and increase transparency.” All that sounds good to me.

How to get cells with no silicone or torching. This recipe creates awesome flip cup cells easily. Video tutorial.

So I just had to give it a try. I had some new paints, a brand I hadn’t used before, a new pouring medium, and thought I would mix it all up a bit and try a flip cup pour without any silicone. How would these new products all react together? Could I get cells? I would have fun trying. So I’m going for an elegant and sophisticated palette of understated natural colors today – a trendy coffee shop feel.

For this flip cup painting I used:

Check it out! Amazing cells without adding any silicone. No torching – just straight out of the cup it was perfect, and the cells moved beautifully, didn’t break up at all during the tilt. I loved it! What a fabulous result and quite unexpected.

Amazing cells without adding any silicone. No torching – just straight out of the cup it was perfect, and the cells moved beautifully, didn’t break up at all during the tilt. I loved it! What a fabulous result and quite unexpected.

Video Tutorial: Recipe For Amazing Cells Without Silicone or Torching

That seemed so easy! I really never expected those results. Now, can I replicate them? Will it work for my other paint brands? Clearly further experimenting is needed. Watch for more developments as I try out this idea with some of the other paints I have. Have I hit upon a magic formula? Time will tell…

As usual, you can see some photos of the project in the slideshow below, both wet and dry pictures, and closeups of the details.


25 thoughts on “Acrylic Pouring Cells Without Silicone or Torching Recipe”

  1. Ulla Ammermann

    Hello, greetings from Germany. I love your work and wish , I could have the results you had. When I tried, I got only very little cells although I took Liquitex pouring medium or Floetrol and Silicone. Seeing your Video, I now will try a picture with alcohol. Perhaps I have success now ? Sorry – my English is not good. Kind regards, Ulla Ammermann

  2. Love watching your videos and your results. I haven’t had much luck creating cells with alcohol nor CFC spray, I think I might have the ratios wrong! I am only using craft/poster paint at present as I am just beginnng and like you I hate to see waste. I also made my own Pouring Medium with PVA glue and mineral water. Anyway thank you again will continue to watch and learn I hope!


    1. I think stick with the acrylic paints instead of poster paints and use the silicone oil instead of alcohol. That should give better results. But in the end it comes down to a lot of experimenting to see what works best for your paints unless you are following exactly a recipe that someone else is using. Good luck.

  3. What a gorgeous result! I’ve watched a couple of your videos and you are so enjoyable to watch and listen to. I love your honesty and humor. I cannot wait to try this method. Thanks for the info and inspiration!

    1. I wish I did! After a lot of trying I was never able to develop a recipe that I found worked consistently using alcohol. I suggest my usual formula instead which is 2 parts paint, 1 part floetrol, water as needed for a creamy consistency and then treadmill silicone for the cells

    1. Thank You for your positivity in creating these fun projects! I love how you experiment and have us watch hoping we can create it also. I haven’t had much luck with cells and will try other methods because I want them !! Have fun and Thanks Again !!

  4. I am a first timer and I really like your video. May I ask approximately how much paint, acrylic gloss and alcohol in each cup? Very interested in doing this in different colors. Loved the outcome!!!!

    1. Hi Karen! Give this a go:

      • 1 tablespoon of paint
      • 1/2 tablespoon Floetrol
      • About 1 teaspoon of water (as needed)
      • 5 drops silicone oil

  5. I use apple barrel paints bc I seem to always be at Walmart. I also got a duochrome color. My dad used to make paints (like sherwin Williams) when I was a kid so his knowledge is way past most in regards to paint. Of course I had him help me and Im not sure if it was the duochrome colors or the mixing medium (i think its decoart brand) but my 4 yr old (with our guidance) got massive cells. It was our first time and other than making the newb mistake of not using pulled canvas (it buckled) it turned out awesome. Thanks for your site its amazing

    1. Please ask your 4 yr if he could come over to help me. No matter what I do, silicone, alcohol, Coconut milk hair serum. Nothing. Help.

  6. Beverly kaplannelson

    I love your videos they are beautiful being a new person in the hobby can somebody please tell me the correct recipe for paints when doing sink or colander pours as my do not hold the pattern Are my paints too thin I even tried making them’s thicker but still no luck I’d certainly appreciate some help on this otherwise everything’s going fine thank you so much

  7. I love what you did with the beige, tan, brown and gold. So elegant. I do have a question. You mentioned you live in the Caribbean…so do I. I am in the southern Caribbean. Anything I want I must have sent in and it makes things very expensive. I have a large range of acrylic paint but where do you get your 99 percent alcohol and Floetrol? Is there somewhere down this way I can get it?

  8. Alcohol sold out due to pandemic ..bought whiskey…70% alcohol…didn’t work…will try your recipe..!

  9. Hi! Last year I tried that Sargent Acrylic Varnish as a medium, but it doesnt work to create cells ; I know that alcohol 99,1 is an aditive that can be use to create those, but I don’t try, I’ll do. Foetrol creates cells without any aditive.. so is better to experiment and to see what happen..

  10. I have been using alcohol for pouring for about a year and love it. How much alcohol are you putting in each color? I have yet to have gotten the new 99% alcohol somewhat stable in consistent cell creation.
    70% alcohol that you could get pre covid for a dollar is no longer available. So frustration has set in.
    However, I still love alcohol for pouring… mainly no toxic cancer causing fumes and alcohol does evaporate leaving no after paint seasons wash off pre resin or varnish treatment. Please if you have a recommendation on amount to use I would appreciate it.

  11. Your coffee house painting came out amazing! Looking forward to trying alcohol. I think your secret might be that you added several drops of alcohol and in the process of talking about your experiences forgot you already added the alcohol and added more. So more alcohol seemed to work for you. I’m going with that.

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