Your choice of epoxy resins largely depends on your intended use. There really isn’t one resin that’s perfect for every imaginable project.
You also want to consider how much clarity you want in your finished piece or if you want to add color.
Keep these considerations in mind as we explore the best epoxy resin options for artwork and crafting, casting, UV resistance, and jewelry.
Here’s a quick peek at the top choices:
Best Epoxy Resins
Whether you want to attempt an ever-popular river cast table or enhance a dull wood countertop, these epoxy resins will do the job.
Below are the best of the best resins for artwork, and really, almost any other resin project.
Deep pour resin cures a little slower than regular resin, allowing you to build 2-4 inch layers with one pour.
This particular resin is also very viscous, which means there’s time for all the bubbles to escape before the resin cures.
A deep pour and high viscosity mean more working time, making this resin kit great for bigger projects, like river cast tables.
Be mindful of your working environment, though. A 2-4 inch pour will generate heat more slowly than thinner options, but the amount of heat it produces overall is greater.
That can lead to cracks if your working environment is the wrong temperature.
- 2-4 inch layers in one pour.
- More working time.
- Great for large projects.
- Prone to cracks if working environment temp shifts.
Runner Up: FGCI SUPERCLEAR Epoxy
For a genuinely glass-like finish, my favorite resin is FGCI’s Superclear Epoxy Resin.
It’s a much thicker resin than the deep pour version reviewed above. Superclear Epoxy Resin works well for filling in cracks or creating smaller works of art.
It’s not as great for big projects because you can only pour one thin layer at a time, about ¼ inch thick.
The dense viscosity of Superclear epoxy can also make bubbles a concern. However, a short blast with a heat gun will get rid of them.
- Crystal-clear, glass-like finish.
- Great for filling in cracks.
- Works well for small projects.
- Can only pour 1/4 inch layer at a time.
- Bubble prone.
Beginner Friendly: Incredible Solutions Table Top Epoxy
Users love that Incredible Solutions makes epoxy resin that much easier to use. With a 1:1 mixing ratio, it’s hard to mess this resin up.
Plus, Incredible Solutions takes the time to provide beginner-ready instructions.
Incredible Solutions Table Top Epoxy is thin, so you can’t pour layers more than ¼ inch thick. It is self-leveling, though; it will produce smooth corners and edges for any project.
- Easy 1:1 mixing ratio.
- Detailed instructions included.
- Cures quickly.
- Cannot pour more than ¼ inch thick.
Best Resins for Casting
If you want to make figurines or jewelry, you need resin that’s good for casting.
That means you need resin that’s on the thin side, preferably with a deep pour, so it penetrates all possible gaps and creates a solid finished piece.
FCGI’s Deep Pour epoxy in the smaller, 1.5-gallon size is ideal for small to medium casting projects.
Users love this epoxy for casting because it handles mica pigment well, is UV-yellowing resistant, and is made in the USA.
Like most casting resins, though, this one has a long cure time. It may take up to 72 hours to dry and seven days to fully cure.
Though it works well for jewelry, you have to mix at least 1 full pint at a time, which could be a waste of resin depending on the piece’s size.
- Handles mica pigment well.
- Pours 2-4 inch layers.
- UV-yellowing resistant.
- Very long cure time.
- Must mix at least 1 pint at a time.
Best Value: FCGI SUPERCLEAR Epoxy (2 Gallon Size)
If you’re making a river table or have a lot of art projects in mind, you’re going to need a lot of epoxy resin! This 2-gallon version of FCGI’s SUPERCLEAR formula is ideal for casting.
It’s very simple to use thanks to a 1:1 mixing ratio, and it’s reasonably priced.
However, it cures very fast, which makes some projects difficult. It also seems to be more prone to bubbles than other brands.
- Easy to use.
- Thicker consistency.
- Very short cure time.
- Prone to bubbles.
Best for Beginners: Naked Fusion Artist’s Resin
Naked Fusion Artist’s Resin is the most forgiving resin around. It has an easy 1:1 mixing ratio and a 45-minute working time.
The resin takes pigment like a dream, and alcohol inks create magical effects.
However, it may not be as great for glass-like applications. If you want something crystal clear and don’t plan to add pigment, this might not be the best resin pick.
It also doesn’t have a deep pour, which makes some castings hard.
- Simple 1:1 mixing ratio.
- 45-minute work time.
- Great with pigment and alcohol inks.
- Not as clear as other formulas.
- Not deep pour.
Resins without UV resistance will yellow rather quickly. If you’re working on something you want to last despite its age, you need UV resistance.
Top Pick: Clear Table Top Epoxy Resin
For a clear-as-glass cure that’s UV resistant, Pro Marine’s Clear Table Top Epoxy Resin is ideal.
Its self-leveling formula prevents fish-eyes and crawling or waves. Even bubbles are manageable as long as you have a heat gun on hand.
Maybe best of all, though, is Pro Marine’s customer service. They provide same-day troubleshooting should you ever need it.
- Crystal-clear, self-leveling formula.
- Incredible customer service.
- Not great for casting.
- Short work time.
Best Full Kit: Craft Resin Crystal Clear Epoxy Kit
Users love Craft Resin’s epoxy kit for its UV and heat resistance.
It also excels in air release, which means it’s less prone to bubbles. The kit comes with a mixing stick and gloves, and it’s effortless to use.
It does have a fast working time of about 30 minutes, so be prepared when you use it, and it’s on the pricier side of things. But as a UV-resistant resin, it’s amazing.
- Fewer bubbles.
- UV and heat resistant.
- Includes mixing stick and gloves.
- Short pot life.
Most Versatile: Art N’ Glow Epoxy Resin
Art N’ Glow Epoxy Resin isn’t just UV resistant. If you use the right pigments from Art N’ Glow with it, it will glow in the dark!
This self-degassing resin lets bubbles rise to the surface and pop as it cures, so you get a crystal-clear surface with a glossy shine.
It also has a long pot life, so you have plenty of time to play.
With a long work time, though, it’s hard to suspend inclusions like glitter or other powders. And the cure time is at least 24 hours.
- Glow-in-the-dark potential.
- Long pot life.
- Not suitable for suspended particles.
- Long cure time.
Epoxy Resin For Crafting and Jewelry
Epoxy resin makes gorgeous jewelry and incredible crafts. Having the right resin for crafting means it’s affordable and easy to work with.
Best for Beginners: Craft Clear Epoxy Resin
Dr. Craft’s Clear Epoxy Resin comes in a kit, making it perfect for arts and crafts.
Each set comes with mixing sticks, cups with spouts, and a plastic spreader. Plus, you’ll receive a thorough instructional guide.
This resin provides a longer work time of 45 minutes, perfect for novice users.
However, adding pigment seems to complicate things and may leave your resin artwork rubbery even after a 24-hour cure.
- Long work time.
- Comes with full kit.
- Great instructional guide included.
- May have trouble fully hardening.
- Longer cure time.
Most Versatility: PUDUO Epoxy Resin Kit
PUDUO’s epoxy resin formula is fast curing, so your jewelry or crafts will be set in about eight hours.
Users love how well this epoxy works with pigments, including glow-in-the-dark powders.
However, this epoxy has trouble fully hardening if your working environment isn’t perfectly warm.
Though the product is supposed to be self degassing, microbubbles are apparent with clear applications.
- Fast cure time.
- Great with pigments.
- Reasonable price.
- Very sensitive to environmental factors.
- Microbubbles in clear applications.
Best Value: Teexpert Epoxy Resin
This affordable and easy-to-use resin kit from Teexpert is perfect for the casual crafter.
It’s self-leveling and fast curing, so pieces will be completely hard in about 24 hours.
Unfortunately, it is a bit bubble prone; using a heat gun will help. It also has a bit more of an odor than other products on this list.
- Full kit.
- Fast curing.
- Bubble prone.
- Stronger odor.
What Causes Resin to Yellow?
UV light from the sun degrades epoxy polymers over time, creating amber tones or yellowing.
That’s why you should never leave resin outside; even UV-resistant resin will yellow if left in direct, outdoor sunlight.
What’s the Difference Between Resin and Epoxy?
Technically speaking, epoxy is a resin, so there is no difference. However, artists tend to refer to epoxy resins as being thinner. They also typically mix in a 1:1 ratio.
In contrast, casting resins usually allow for a deeper pour, have higher viscosities, and often more complicated mixing ratios.
What Is the Pot Life of Mixed Epoxy Resin?
Pot life is the amount of time a given mix of epoxy resin and hardener will remain liquid. It determines how long you have to pour your layers.
Each epoxy resin formula will have a slightly different pot life, and that pot life will vary based on the temperature in your working environment.
Do You Need a Mask When Using Resin?
If you have to sand, grind, or drill your resin after it hardens, then yes, please wear a mask! Otherwise, for low odor resins, you shouldn’t need a mask.
However, if you’re sensitive to smells or prone to respiratory issues, wearing a mask isn’t a bad idea.
Wrapping It Up
As you can see, you have a lot of options, but which one is best for you depends on your plans, goals, skill level, and envisioned creation.
If you’re dreaming of creating a beautiful epoxy table, the FGCI Deep Pour Liquid Glass Kit is an excellent choice.
It not only takes color very well, but it also has superb yellowing resistance, releases bubbles quickly, and is easy to mix and use. Highly recommended!
For smaller projects, I don’t think you’ll go wrong with Naked Fusion Artist’s Resin. As far as resins go, this one is fairly multipurpose and easy to use.
Versatile. Incredibly low odor. Nontoxic. Long work time. Forgiving. Easy to tint. Great for beginners!
Last update on 2022-01-17 at 00:58 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API