How to Paint With Pearl and Metal Flake

by Alexis Rohlin

If you want to achieve the look of a custom paint job on your car, you can add pearl powder or metal flakes to automotive paint and then apply the paint to your car with an automotive paint sprayer. Sparkling pearl powders and metal flakes can give your car's exterior a brilliant shine that glints in the sunlight. Painting your car with pearl and metal flake paint takes some preparation and skill, but the results can be impressive.

Items you will need

  • Vacuum
  • Non-wax car soap
  • Clean towels
  • Mineral spirits
  • Cleaning rag
  • Electric sander
  • Face mask with filter
  • Safety goggles
  • Newspaper
  • Masking tape
  • Automotive paint sprayer
  • Clear coat automotive paint
Step 1

Clean the area that you are going to use to paint your car. Vacuum the ceiling, walls, floors and other surfaces, such as work benches, to remove as much dust as possible.

Step 2

Wash your car with a non-wax soap and warm water. Dry it with clean towels.

Step 3

Place mineral spirits on a cleaning rag and wipe down the car surface where you are going to paint to remove contaminants.

Step 4

Put on your safety goggles and face mask. Sand down the areas that you going to paint with an electric sander. Wipe off the sanded areas with mineral spirits.

Step 5

Place masking tape on the parts of the car that you are not going to be painting to protect them, such as window seams and door handles. Cover larger areas with a layer of newspaper and tape it down with masking tape. Press the tape flat.

Step 6

Add the pearl or metal flake to the paint and mix it thoroughly with a paint stick. Add 25 grams of candy pearl powder to 1 quart clear coat automotive paint. Add 1 tbsp. of ghost pearl powder to 1 quart of a dark color base coat paint. Add 1 tbsp. of metal flakes to 1 quart of clear coat.

Step 7

Pour the mixed paint into the automotive spray gun reservoir or cup reservoir. Hold the spray gun perpendicular to the surface that you are spraying and hold the air line of the gun back away from the vehicle. Spray three even coats onto the surface of the car. Wait 2 hours or until the paint is dry before adding the next coat to the car. Wait 24 hours for the paint to set, or cure.

Tips & Warnings

  • Always wear a filtered face mask when working with automotive body paints.