How to Make a Plexiglas Mirror
A mirror does not have to be made of glass; acrylic sheeting can be a great, lightweight, shatterproof alternative. It's easy to make a Plexiglas mirror at home.
If you want an inexpensive DIY mirror that's easy to hang, make one with acrylic sheeting. In comparison to glass, the acrylic sheeting is strong, lightweight, shatter-resistant, resistant to the elements and easy to cut, which makes it a more attractive option for many people. Acrylic sheeting, known generically as plexiglass, is available in many brands including the highest-quality brand, Plexiglas. To make a Plexiglas mirror, all you need to do is apply mirror spray paint to the back of a sheet of Plexiglas then insert it into a frame of your choice.
Things You Will Need
- Drop cloth, plastic sheeting or newspaper
- Plexiglas cut to size
- Mineral spirits
- Low-grit sandpaper
- Primer spray paint
- Silver foil metallic spray paint
Cover a flat work surface with a drop cloth, plastic sheeting or newspaper.
Remove any protective film from both sides of the sheet of Plexiglas. Apply a few drops of mineral spirits to a rag and wipe both sides of the sheet of Plexiglas to remove all debris and grease.
Lightly sand the side of the sheet of Plexiglas. Wipe the sheet with a clean rag to remove all traces of dust.
Spray a fine, uniform coat of primer spray paint over the sanded surface of the sheet of Plexiglas, keeping the can 12 inches from the surface while you spray. Use a broad side-to-side motion with each row slightly extending over the previous one to ensure complete coverage. Let it dry thoroughly, following the directions on the can.
Spray a fine, uniform coat of silver foil metallic spray paint over the primed surface of the sheet of Plexiglas, using the same technique as the primer step. Leave each coat to completely dry before adding another coat in the same way. Apply as many coats as needed to achieve complete coverage. Let the final coat dry thoroughly, following the directions on the can.
Insert your mirrored sheet of Plexiglas into the frame with the sprayed surface facing inward against the backing that comes with your frame. It’s ready to hang on the wall.
Protect Your Work Surface
Prepare the Plexiglas
Sand the Plexiglas
Prime the Plexiglas
Apply the Spray Paint
Assemble the Frame
Mirrored Plexiglas is available online and at all hardware stores and comes in many colors as well as tinted, non-glare and two-way varieties. To ensure your Plexiglas is as transparent as glass, go for the top-quality version designed for framing art. Ask the online retailer or hardware store to cut the Plexiglas to the size to fit your frame.
Only work with spray paint outdoors or in a location with adequate ventilation.
- Use high-quality Plexiglas meant for framing art, as it is as transparent as glass.
- Although some manufacturers recommend it, do not apply a coat of plastic bonding spray before using mirror spray paint. Your mirrored surface is not vulnerable to wear and tear, as it will remain protected in the frame.
Claire has been writing and editing for 18 years. She has written for many digital home publications, including Apartment Therapy, Good Housekeeping, Buzzfeed and Architectural Digest.