Acrylic and Oil Paint Tube Storage Ideas (Recommendations)

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Do you have a lot of paint tubes lying around? Oil and acrylic paint tubes lying in a drawer or in a pile make it hard to find the colors you need. It’s also messy. If you’re looking for ideas for storing and organizing your acrylic or oil paint tubes, here are a few ideas.

In this article, I share 8 paint tube organizers and racks that can help keep your art and hobby space in better order. I’ve collected a huge amount of paint supplies over the years. As a miniature painter who uses oils and acrylic paints, the temptation to try out new color combinations and paint schemes is both a blessing and curse.

Continue reading to see ways I’ve discovered that can help keep our burgeoning paint collections organized and easier to use.


The Problem with Paint Tube Storage

Oil paint tube stacked piles and unorganized - best paint tube storage racks and displays - how to store paint tubes
Does your paint drawer look like this? Oil paint tubes are notoriously hard to keep organized because they have odd shapes that keep changing (as you dispense paint). They don’t stand upright or lay completely flat.

The problem with paint tubes is simple. In contrast to bottles or flat-bottomed containers of paint and inks, the flexible tubes of paint we use in our hobbies don’t stand upright. You have to lay the paint tubes flat or pile them up in a drawer or tray.

This makes it difficult to find the colors you want by looking at the label. I’ve tried painting the caps with a splash of color so I can find what paint I’m looking for without digging around too much. The problem with this, however, is that oil paints dry slowly. If I paint the cap, I need to wait days for it to cure/dry. It’s a giant hassle!

RELATED: 15 GREAT HOBBY PAINT STORAGE RACKS AND DISPLAYS

Here’s another issue: Paint tubes are either made with plastic or metal. And, like toothpaste, these tubes change shape as you dispense and use up the product. If you’re like me, you end up rolling the ends of the paint tubes to squeeze out every ounce of color. I even bought a toothpaste squeezer to help me get all the paint out of my paint tubes. What happens is that you can’t simply stack these tubes as you might other containers. They fall over each other.

So, what do you do to organize your paint tubes? Well, I’ve found and tried out a few storage ideas including racks and boxes designed to store, organize, and display oil or acrylic paint tubes. Check out them out below!


Oil and Acrylic Paint Tube Storage and Display Organizers (8 Ideas)

There aren’t many storage rack organizer options you can buy for paint tubes. Most paint tube organizers are homemade DIY racks and vertical display stands. This issue underscores the difficulty and oddity of storing paint tubes, as compared with conventional hobby paint bottles or paint pots, e.g., Citadel, Vallejo paint brands.

Here are 8 oil or acrylic paint tube storage racks and organizers you can buy. Some of them may give you ideas for how you can make your own organizer for paint tubes.

1. Mezzo Artist Brush and Paint Tube Organizer

paint tube organizer wooden - best paint tube storage racks and displays - how to store paint tubes

The Mezzo Artist Brush and Paint Tube Organizer is a simple, recognizable paint tube storage solution. The organizer or rack is a 3-tiered laser cut shelving system that will display your paint tubes right on your table top. The angled cuts in the rack where you place the tubes turn all the labels on your paints toward you, so you can see what colors they are quickly.

This paint tube organizer will hold up to 18 tubes with 60ml of paint. Of course, as the paint is used up, each tube will get shorter and shorter. I find that keeping the paint tubes squeezed flat, instead of rolling them from the bottom, helps keep the tube upright in the shelf.

There are other shelving systems in the Mezzo Artist Brush storage system, which you can see below. They work together as a modular storage solution for art supplies, including tubes of acrylic and oil paint.

Key Features

  • Holds up to 18 paint tubes of various sizes up to 60ml
  • Upright display format helps you see color labels
  • Modular system that works well with other products in the organizer model line
  • Built for tabletop display, storage, and organization of acrylic or oil paint tubes

2. Sanfurney Paint Storage Tray

paint storage tray - best paint tube storage racks and displays - how to store paint tubes

I found the Sanfurney Paint Storage Tray to be the simplest desktop or drawer organizer for paint tubes. It is a basic paint tube storage box with equally sized containers or compartments that can store and organize art supplies, such as paint bottles, paint tubes, brushes, and other doodads.

There are 21 seperate compartments with enough room for medium-to-large oil or acrylic paint tubes. The side-by-side upright organization system does help you see what’s in each compartment. The material of the tube organizer rack is 5mm of PVC plastic (which is very strong), lightweight, and easy to clean.

Although this is much better than piling paint tubes in a drawer or shelf, like I have, the Sanfurney storage tray does make it hard to see the side labels of your paint tubes. I recommend placing a dab of paint from each paint tube on the cap so you can see what colors you’re pulling out when looking directly from the top of this organizer.

Key Features

  • Holds up to 21 paint tubes in separate compartments
  • Minimalist box construction
  • Vertical paint tube storage format requires painting the cap for easier ID of paint color
  • Built for storing tubes of paint in a drawer or shelf

3. Mezzo Artist Paint Tube Organizer Rack and Display Stand

paint tube organizer rack and display stand - best paint tube storage racks and displays - how to store paint tubes

The Mezzo Artist Paint Tube Organizer Rack and Display Stand is part of a modular system of paint tube racks. If you’re looking for better way to store oil or acrylic paint tubes along with other art supplies, this is a good choice to consider. The laser cut wooden shelves and cutouts will arrange paint tubes in a way that will display the labels for you to quickly see them at-a-glance. Very convenient!

The corner and top module have shelves with round holes for storing brushes upright within easy reach. Long or short handled brushes will fit well in the tall or shorter holders, respectively. Additionally, both smaller and larger tube cutouts allow you to store paint tubes of various sizes (and shapes) upright and in neat side-by-side rows.

As you use up your paint in the tubes, I suggest keeping the bottoms flat instead of rolled-up. This will make them stand upright in a way that will continue to let you see them better while stored in this tube organizer rack.

In contrast with other paint tube storage/display systems I’ve found, the Mezzo Artist Paint Tube Organizer Rack is one of the few options you have for a paint tube storage unit that will work directly on your desk or table top.

Key Features

  • Three piece modular system for storing, displaying, and organizing tubes of paint, brushes, and other hobby supplies
  • Built for tabletops and hobby workstations
  • Easy access to paint tubes and brushes
  • Durable construction with a compact form factor that will fit most tabletop hobby work spaces

4. ArtBin Art Supply Box Storage Case

art supply box storage case for paint tubes - best paint tube storage racks and displays - how to store paint tubes

The ArtBin Art Supply Box Storage Case is one of my favorite portable storage boxes or cases for paint tubes and other art supplies. I use this case for moving stuff around my house or taking my kids’ arts and crafts supplies with me. If you’re looking for a portable toolbox system to take your paint tubes with you, this is a great option.

Note that there are other portable painting and hobby workstations I’ve reviewed. But, few of these other options have compartments that allow you to hold paint tubes in a compact case. A good alternative to the ArtBin case for paint tubes is a cosmetic train case. Of course, the ArtBin Art Supply Box is more lightweight and practical.

The art supply box has 3 trays that fold upwards when you open the cover. Each shelf reveals its contents as it slides out, and conveniently displays what paint colors are available.

The case is versatile. You can adjust each compartment with removable dividers. This lets you adjust the shelves for multiple sized paint tubes. The bottom compartment will store all sorts of other things, too, including bottles of primer, glues, varnishes, and palettes.

To close the case, a grippy latch folds back over the lip of the cover and locks down with a snap. A carry handle on the top makes taking the entire storage case whenever you go easy. This is definitely one of my top choices for keeping my essential art supplies, including paint tubes, all in one place.

Key Features

  • Made for travel and portability
  • Stores paint tubes and other art supplies in a self-contained carry case
  • Closes and opens conveniently with a robust latch system
  • Shelving system folds out to display stored paint tubes

5. Paint Organizer and Portable Carrier for Artists

DIY paint tube storage - portable carrier for paints for artists - best paint tube storage racks and displays - how to store paint tubes

This paint organizer and carrier is a fun take for storing paint tubes. Note, however, that this is not for an actual product, but rather the pattern to make your own paint storage roll-up case! If you’re a hobbyist with a crafty side, this is a creative and inexpensive route to take for improving the way you store your paint tubes.

I’ve tried to find ways to improve the way I store and organize my oil and acrylic paint tube collections. But, there aren’t many options for pre-made or ready-to-use systems. You have to DIY a tube storage system or retrofit something that wasn’t originally designed for paint tubes, e.g., cosmetic cases or tackle boxes.

The Artists Paint Organizer is the pattern for YOU to make a paint tube roll up case. This design will let you make a nifty storage case or hanger system for paint tubes. It’s not outlandish in appearance, but fully functional for any artist or hobbyist looking for a better way to keep their paint tubes readily available and portable.

Taking a closer look, you can roll out the organizer and see all your paint tubes immediately. A small loop at the top of the roll-up case lets you hang the organizer on a wall hook so it can act as a convenient “shelf”.

Paint tubes slip in and out of each slot with clear covers. Again, this is the pattern to make one of these yourselves. Some simple sewing skill may be necessary. Take a look!

Key Features

  • Creative design plans for a roll-up paint tube storage and display system
  • Great for DIY creators who enjoy making hobby and art accessories
  • Compact, flexible, and versatile storage and organizing solution for acrylic and oil paint tubes of almost any size
  • Open and hang this paint tube case vertically for easy access to paints

6. 3D Printed Paint Tube Trays

3d printed paint tube trays - best paint tube storage racks and displays - how to store paint tubes

The 3D Printed Paint Tube Trays is a made to order set of 3D printed paint tube storage trays. The plastic is durable, sustainable, and guaranteed by the vendor to be “unbreakable”. The trays are rigid and strong and should endure years of use in any art studio or hobbyist work space.

Store paint tubes and other hobby supplies in neat, stackable trays with side-by-side row compartments. You can carry entire sets of paints wherever you need them. Lay the trays down alongside each other to see what you need. Check with the vendor below to see what sizes are available for storing paint tubes of any volume.

Oil paints and acrylic paint tubes are some of the hardest items to organize, because of their odd shapes and sizes that change as you use them. 3D printed products are superb because they are often custom-fit for different needs. If you have a 3D printer, you can probably find other designs for storing paint tubes that you can print yourself.

Key Features

  • Made to order 3D printed paint tube tray
  • Holds up to 6 paint tubes (2.5oz or 60 ml size)
  • Stackable trays allow you to organize your paint collection in drawers or shelves
  • Lightweight, durable, and portable

7. Pegboard Acrylic Paint Tube Organizer Rack

acrylic paint tube organizer rack - best paint tube storage racks and displays - how to store paint tubes

The Pegboard Acrylic Paint Tube Organizer Rack is for those of us who need to free up tabletop space and want our paint tubes stored outside of drawers and cabinets. As with Artist Paint Organizer (above #5), this is a file download for making your own shelving system for storing acrylic or oil paint tubes using a laser cutter.

The design allows you to make these paint tube holders that you can mount on a pegboard wall. The instructions for creating these shelves are part of the file. The thing that stood out for me with this design is that it may work well with one of the recommended desks for setting up a dedicated hobby and miniature painting workstation that uses a pegboard backdrop.

I’ll note that you should make sure that whatever paint tube storage option you choose will fit your space and work area. Some of these DIY designs can have unclear measurements for size and dimension.

If you take a closer look at this shelving design for paint tubes (link below), you’ll find other related designs that may work for your particular needs. For those looking for other designs that you can download for your laser cutter or 3D printer, Etsy has a lot of different options to choose from.

Key Features

  • Design plans for a laser-cutter to make your own pegboard shelf for paint tubes
  • Best for those with limited table or hobby desk space for storing art supplies
  • Works well with MDF material
  • May also work alongside standard pegboards with popular work benches

8. Small Paint Rack for Oil Paint Tubes

Acrylic and oil paint tube paint rack - best paint tube storage racks and displays - how to store paint tubes

The Small Paint Rack for Oil Paint Tubes is a handsome piece, laser cut and assembled with MDF (medium density fiberboard). The rack will hold up to 20 tubes of paint with 5 holes for storing brushes vertically. The size of the slots in the rack will easily hold 37ml paint tubes or smaller.

Stainless steel fixings hold this rack together. This makes the rack sturdy enough to carry around, even fully loaded with paint tubes. Other MDF paint storage racks are usually held together by glue, e.g., PVA or white glue, and may not hold together with frequent handling.

As with any of the paint tube holders and racks, this is a kit that comes with all the parts and instructions you’ll need for assembly. The rack is great for placing your paint tubes on your tabletop workstation or on a shelf for easy access.

The vendor for this product also has other modules for storing paints and hobby supplies that are ideal for all types of modeling needs, including wargames, boats, planes, and other scale model figures. Check it out!

Key Features

  • Simple and sturdy paint tube rack
  • Some assembly required with this kit
  • Holds up to 20 tubes of paint with 5 holes for vertical brush storage
  • Angled hanger system displays paint tube color labels for easy identification

Summary Table

 Image  Paint Tube Organizer Rack Feature Price and Info
Paint-Tube-Organizer  Mezzo Artist Brush and Paint Tube Organizer Holds up to 18 paint tubes of various sizes up to 60ml.

Built for tabletop display, storage, and organization of acrylic or oil paint tubes.
Check Price
Paint-Storage-Tray  Sanfurney Paint Storage Tray Holds up to 21 paint tubes in separate compartments.

Built for storing tubes of paint in a drawer or shelf.
Check Price
Storage-Display-Stand-for-Paintbrushes Mezzo Artist Paint Tube Organizer Rack and Display Stand  Three piece modular system for storing, displaying, and organizing tubes of paint, brushes, and other hobby supplies.

Built for tabletops and hobby workstations.
Check Price
Art-Supply-Box  ArtBin Art Supply Box Storage Case Made for travel and portability.

Stores paint tubes and other art supplies in a self-contained carry case.
Check Price
Paint-Organiser-for-Artists Paint Organizer and Portable Carrier for Artists  Great for DIY creators who enjoy making hobby and art accessories.

Compact, flexible, and versatile storage and organizing solution for acrylic and oil paint tubes of almost any size.
Check Price
Paint-Tube-Trays 3D Printed Paint Tube Trays  Holds up to 6 paint tubes (2.5 oz or 60 ml size).

Stackable trays allow to organize paint tubes in drawers or on shelves.
Check Price
Pegboard-Acrylic-Paint-Organizer  Pegboard Acrylic Paint Tube Organizer Rack Design plans for a laser-cutter to make your own pegboard shelf for paint tubes.

May also work alongside standard pegboards with popular work benches.
Check Price
Paint-Rack-for-oil-paint-types  Small Paint Rack for Oil Paint Tubes Holds up to 20 tubes of paint with 5 holes for vertical brush storage.

Angled hanger system displays paint tube color labels for easy identification.
Check Price

Conclusion

Storing tubes of paint is an issues I’ve struggled with for a while. I have a lot of oil paints and they are all in tubes that don’t lay flat, or stand up in the standard hobby paint racks I use. If you’ve done a thorough search online, then you’ll find very few premade, commercially available shelving display systems for storing and organizing tubes of paint.

oil and acrylic paint tube storage solution - pile of paint tubes used in a drawer - best paint tube storage racks and displays - how to store paint tubes
I love collecting paint colors of all kinds. Paint tubes are wonderful, except for when it’s time to put them away! What do you do to keep yours organized?

Despite the wonderful colors and pigments in paint tubes, these containers don’t stand upright or stay the same shape. As you use your oil or acrylic paint, the tubes shrink, wrinkle, and roll up as you squeeze them. I hope you found this simple overview of products helpful.

The best paint tube racks and organizers should help us keep our paint tubes available within easy reach and organized. I want to know immediately what color paint I’m reaching for. Most of the paint tube racks I’ve recommended display the paint tube labels facing toward you for easy color identification.

Do you paint with acrylic or oil paints that come in tubes? How do you keep them organized? I’d love to know!

Thanks for visiting! Happy painting!

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