Can You Really Paint a Light Bulb?

Can you really paint a light bulb? The answer may surprise you! Learn how to do it with this tutorial.

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We’ve all seen those memes and social media posts with a light bulb that has been “painted” with a slogan or design. It’s a fun idea, but is it really possible to do this? Can you really paint a light bulb?

The answer is yes…and no. It depends on the type of light bulb. If you have an incandescent light bulb, then you can paint it without any problem. The heat from the filament inside the bulb will simply bake the paint onto the glass. However, if you have a fluorescent or LED light bulb, then painting it is not recommended. These bulbs are not heated by a filament, so the paint will not adhere to the glass in the same way. In fact, it’s possible that the paint could actually damage the bulb, causing it to stop working properly.

What You Need

To paint a light bulb, you will need:
-A light bulb
-Paint that is made for glass
-A paintbrush
-Newspaper or a drop cloth

How to Do It

It’s actually pretty easy to do. Just follow these simple steps:

-Get a light bulb. Any type of light bulb will do, but we recommend using a incandescent or LED bulb for the best results.
-Remove the light bulb from the socket. Be careful not to break the bulb.
-Turn the light bulb so that the paintable surface is facing up.
-Apply your desired paint to the light bulb. We recommend using acrylic paint, but you can use any type of paint that you like.
-Let the paint dry. This may take several hours or even a day, depending on the type of paint you used.
-Replace the light bulb in the socket and turn on the switch.
-Enjoy your new painted light bulb!


It is safe to say that painting a light bulb is not worth the risk. While there are many ways to change the look of a room, this is not one of them. If you are looking for a way to add some personality to your space, try hanging artwork or using colored light bulbs.