Messy Painting Ideas

Let Them Paint! – Why Messy Painting is Worth Your Clean-up Efforts

Painted HandsDo you avoid giving your child paints because you just don’t have the time for clean-up? Or are you worried that your kid will transform your walls into Jackson Pollock paintings? Well, let me ease your fears and give some suggestions about easy paint clean-up. But first –


  • Painting puts your child “in the zone” and helps them stay in the present. It’s a simple, accessible way to practice mindfulness.
  • Painting gives you and your child connection time. Helping to open bottles or squeeze paints, assisting in washing brushes or simply talking with them as they work are all ways in which you can spend time together.
  • Painting provides teaching moments. From naming colours or types of brush strokes to showing examples of famous artists who work in your child’s art style, painting can be educational as well.
  • Painting encourages experimentation as in color mixing, for example.
  • Painting helps your child learn how to work with and fix mistakes.
  • Painting is de-stressing.Walking in Acrylic Paint on Canvas Board
  • Painting provides opportunities for sensory play.
  • Painting gives a sense of accomplishment.Cardboard DIY Gandola Painted Red Foot
  • Painting is FUN!


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  • Flatten cardboard boxes and use them as shields to protect walls.Painting on Cardboard in Artist Studio on the floor
  • Use trash bags to protect the floor. We do this every time we travel so that Adèle can continue painting wherever she wants. Once the painting sessions is complete, just recycle the trash bag.Finger Painting and Walnut Shells on Canvas and Trash bag Mat Disposable Plate Paper Towel Roller
  • Repurpose egg cartoons and disposable plates by using them as pallets or paint containers. Recycle them right after the painting session.egg cartoons and disposable plateas pallets and paint containers and red painted hand
  • Use spill-proof paint cups:spill-proof paint cups
  • If possible, paint outside near a faucet.
  • Use washable paints. Here are our favourite eco-friendly paint kits:

eco-friendly washable paint kits

refillable dropper bottle and gold glitter paint

What helps you with the messy paint clean-up the most? If there is something unique I should add to my list, please let me know!


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