Retouch Varnish


Product Description

Temporary varnish for oil paintings six months or younger.
Revives dull areas caused by sinking-in of paint.
Helps adhesion of subsequent paint layers.
Dries to a satin finish

Product Code: 016

Paraloid B67 Resin, Artists White Spirit.

Product Application

Langridge Retouch Varnish may be applied to touch dry oil paintings.

Artists’ oil colours dry by absorbing oxygen. For full drying this process generally takes a minimum of 6 months although it can take longer with extremely thick paint films (3mm or thicker). When a painting has a dry surface film (touch dry) it may be protected with the application of a temporary varnish that will allow the passage of oxygen to the oil paint and continue the successful full drying of the painting. A final picture varnish applied before the 6 month drying period will prevent thorough oxygen absorption leading to potential oil paint film failure due to erratic drying.

To ascertain whether the painting’s surface is dry and can receive a varnish without disturbing the colours, take a clean white, lint-free cloth and dampen with Distilled Gum Turpentine. Choose an inconspicuous part of the painting (e.g. corners) and gently rub 2-3 times with the damp cloth. Examine the cloth to see if any discernible quantity of colour has been removed. If colour appears on the cloth the painting’s surface is still not dry and should be left for a few more days and the process repeated. When very little or no colour is present on the cloth the Retouch Varnish may be applied.

It should be noted that because Retouch Varnish has very low-solids it does not significantly alter reflective qualities. If a painting has major differences in gloss/matte reflection Retouch Varnish will not even these out. Retouch Varnish applied over a gloss painting will retain its gloss reflection.

Langridge Retouch Varnish is made by dissolving Paraloid B67 resin in Artists’ White Spirit to make a liquid. Brush or spray applied over paintings, the solvent will evaporate, leaving a thin, even coat of the resin.

Additional Product Information

Reviving dull areas of a painting

If a support for painting (eg canvas) is poorly primed, oil colours will ‘sink-in’ to the surface and exhibit a dull and lifeless colour reflection. The oil from the paint is absorbed into the support leaving the pigment underbound. Apply Retouch Varnish as a rapid sizing agent. Brush apply as a very thin layer. Allow 2 hours before applying further oil colours on top.

Adhesion problems

When very fluid glazes are applied on top of a layer of glossy paint in which there is a high proportion of a Langridge Medium containing Stand Oil the surface may exhibit Surface Beading. The overall adhesion of the paint Layer is unaffected however the artist may find the effect distracting or displeasing. The application of a very thin layer of Retouch Varnish to the touch dry paint surface will help to prevent the ‘beading up’ of succeeding paint layers. For more information

Working properties


Thin only with Artists White Spirit. Alternative solvents such as Gum Turpentine or Low Toxic Solvent are not compatible with Paraloid B67 Resin and can result in a non-drying varnish. Removal Remove the varnish using using Artist’s White Spirit.


Langridge Retouch Varnish is a water-white (clear) liquid with characteristic White Spirit odour. The colour of the varnish will not effect the oil colours over which it is applied.

Clean Up

Clean brushes only with Artists White Spirit. For further washing apply a small quantity of Marseille or other pure olive oil soap and massage the bristles of the brush to release any remaining varnish. Wash thoroughly in warm water. Leave to fully dry before re-use.

Drying Times

30-60 minutes to touch dry. Any airflow over the surface will evaporate the solvent more rapidly which will reduce drying times.

Working Properties


Langridge Solvent 75 is a clear and transparent liquid with no odour.

Clean Up

For further washing apply a small quantity of Langridge Safe-Clean-Up or Marseille or other pure olive oil soap and massage the bristles of the brush to release any remaining White Spirit. Wash thoroughly in warm water. Leave brushes to fully dry before using for oil colours.

Evaporation Times

10ml in 55mm wide open cup at 20ºC (68ºF) ambient temperature full evaporation after 3 hours. Any airflow over the surface will evaporate the solvent more rapidly.

Available in:

100ml (0431), 500ml (0435), Litre (043L), 4 Litre (0434)