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Spray Painting a Stainless Steel Mug

Hi Friends! Every so often I actually make stuff for myself.  Honestly, it’s hard making crafts to sell since I want to keep them all!  I really wanted to try spray painting a stainless steel mug so I decided to make it for myself (it has my name on it, so I have to keep it!).

In the past, I’ve painted Ozark mugs with chalk paint which you can find by clicking here since I hadn’t had success with spray paint.  But I found a few tips online and decided to use a different paint and I absolutely am in love with how it came out!!

Isn’t it pretty???  I had a lot of fun doing the ombre effect and of course using glitter paint!  Spray painting a stainless steel mug is super easy to do too.  Here’s how to do it!  If you want to really seal the glitter with epoxy, check out my tutorial here!

ozark pin

Materials for Spray Painting a Stainless Steel Mug with Glitter

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links from Amazon and/or I receive a small commission at no cost to you when you make a purchase using my links.

painted yeti ozark

First thing to do if you want an image is to cut out a decal with vinyl or buy one off Etsy.  It’s so easy to make your cut your own images with a Cricut cutting machine.  (You can find my Ultimate Guide to Cricut Ideas here! Think gift ideas, decor ideas, wall art, Christmas, great apps to use with it, etc!)

Clean the mug with rubbing alcohol and apply the decal to the mug.  Click here for my video tutorial on how to apply vinyl to a tumbler.

Before I start painting, I tape off the top with blue painter’s tape or electrical tape because I don’t like my mouth to touch the paint.  Make sure it’s pressed down firmly.  Watch the video at the top if you need help with this part.


painting a stainless steel mug

Go to a well ventilated area and place the mug upside down.  After you shake the paint, start spray painting the stainless steel mug from about 12 inches away.  Do a light layer moving around the mug.

spray painting stainless steel mug

Let it dry for about 10-20 minutes and paint another light coat.  It will need 2-3 coats.

painted yeti

If you want to watch a video of how I spray paint stainless steel tumblers click here!

Then I turned the mug over and added Glad press n seal around the top so that paint wouldn’t get in the mug.  With the glitter paint, spritz a light layer all over the mug.  Let dry for 10-15 minutes and spritz another layer from middle of mug to bottom.  Let dry and repeat again with spritzing just the bottom.

There is no right or wrong to this part.  It’s up to how you want it to look.  If you want it dark purple on the bottom, you need to add quite a few layers.

painting a yeti ozark
spray paint glitter ozark

I made the mistake here of taking off the press and seal and tape.  I ended up adding it back on to spray the top coat on so just leave it on.  Let it dry and now it’s time to take off the vinyl decal.  

I used my weeding tool to lift an edge up and then slowly pulled it off using my tool to pull up the little swirly pieces.

glitter tumbler tutorial
personalizing ozark yeti

Now spray a few coats of glitter sealer on, letting it dry between coats for about 20 minutes.  I did 2 coats.  It says it will dry to touch in an hour so don’t touch it before that.  

I did and now I have a small finger mark on my mug.  It’s so hard to wait sometimes!  The directions say to let it sit for 24 hours before handling it.

Since I took the tape off too early and had to put it back on, some of the sealer ran underneath the tape.  I used my favorite cleaning agent and a qtip to get it off.  

To read more about how amazing tea tree oil is to clean paint and sharpie with click here.

tea tree oil
cleaning with tea tree oil

Now it’s all clean around the top!

yeti ozark decoration

So here’s a few pictures of the finished product front and back!!  See that little nick at the top?? That’s what happens when you have that small little tail of the tape that slips down.  

Make sure your painter’s tape is in one long straight line!  (I have since started using electrical tape since it’s a bit easy to maneuver).

ombre glitter ozark
spray painting ozark

I love how it came out and now my daughter is begging me to make her one… oh the possibilities!  Post pics of yours if you do one!

spray painting a stainless steel mug

I recently applied epoxy to my glitter cups and it wasn’t as hard as I thought!  Check out  my full step by step plus video glitter tumbler tutorial here!


If you don’t like glitter, you can always just spray paint them!  Check out my tutorial here for how I  made these ones!


Thanks for stopping by!  Have a great day!

leap of faith crafting
painting a stainless steel mug
spray paint ozark

Sarah Quinn

Thursday 9th of April 2020

How long does it seem to last on the cups? Thinking of doing it for my girls for Easter. Thanks!

Leap of Faith Crafting

Sunday 26th of April 2020

It's lastest quite a few years. My daughter's is starting to chip just a little bit around her name but they are about 3 years old.


Monday 1st of July 2019

Great tutorial ! Our youth church group are going to make these for this year's VBS project. They will only be spray painting not using the glitter. Can you suggest the best thing to seal the cups with ? We don't want to use exopy. Something that is FDA approved. Any other tips would be appreciated. Thanks so much!!

Leap of Faith Crafting

Monday 1st of July 2019

HI Christie, unfortunately, there are not a lot of options when comes to sealants that are FDA approved. Epoxy is definitely one of those. Mod Podge is non-toxic and I have used it to seal tumblers before and it works pretty well. I always tape off the top of the tumblers so none of our mouths come into contact with the paint or sealant. I agree using epoxy with kids wouldn't be easy to do! Mod Podge came out with a thicker sealant this year but I haven't actually worked with it, so I can't say how well it works, but you could definitely look into that!


Monday 29th of April 2019

Hi Amy. Thanks SO much for this amazing idea! I was considering purchasing an ombré tumbler when I came across your tutorial and immediately decided to diy it instead because yours is SO much cuter! Question: is there a reason you turn the tumbler right-side-up before spraying on the purple glitter? Does spraying the glitter on the bottom make the tumbler unstable? Thanks for the help and all the great crafting ideas!

Leap of Faith Crafting

Wednesday 1st of May 2019

Hi Carol, I'm sure yours will come out super cute! I just find it easier to spray at a down angle. I suppose you don't need to turn it around, but the glitter spray paint might fall farther down the cup with gravity. If you try it, I'd love to know how it comes out!

Alora Baker

Thursday 28th of March 2019

What do you suggest if putting a vinyl decal on these? Should I seal the cup first with something? (And if so what?) and then afterwards but the decal on and seal again?

Leap of Faith Crafting

Tuesday 2nd of April 2019

You don't really need to seal vinyl if you are using the outdoor/permanent vinyl. I have some tumblers where there is no seal over the vinyl and others than I applied a layer of triple thick or mod podge over. Either way works. If you are painting and then adding vinyl, I would put a coating over the whole thing for the paint. Mod podge, triple thick or a spray sealant.


Tuesday 15th of January 2019

Hi Amy Thank you so much for sharing your crafts and how to make. I want to try and make the tumbler with the letter "A". Where can I get the letter fonts? Thank you, Tami

Leap of Faith Crafting

Friday 18th of January 2019

Hi Tami, you know, I found that split letter monogram for free a few years ago. I can't remember if it was in a FB group or if I just googled it. I did just make a video tutorial on how to make a split letter monogram in CDS - you can check it out here Thanks for stopping by! is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to