Going over a paint product’s product guide—called by pros in the industry as the Technical Data Sheet (TDS)—before starting a paint project is always a wise move.  It’s advantageous for you to know as much as you can about a product so you can avoid paint problems that arise from improper usage and application. Find a Boysen product’s product guide on the Boysen website or the Boysen App.

Upon consulting a TDS, you might notice 2 or 3 kinds of drying times listed. These are not one and the same. They all pertain to different things. To help you out, here’s your quick guide for decoding the different drying times of paint.

Paint Dry Times: Touch Dry vs. Recoating Interval vs. Full Cure | MyBoysen

Touch Dry

Pretty straightforward, touch dry is exactly what it sounds like. It means that the paint you’ve applied will feel dry to the touch. No paint will stick or transfer to your hand nor will it leave a mark on the surface.

However, take note that, at this stage, it’s only dry to the touch. It may not yet be ready for another coating of paint or for use if the paint is on a high-touch surface. The paint will still be soft and not yet fully cured.

As an example, let’s say you’ve painted your kitchen cabinets with Boysen Quick Drying Enamel. Its touch dry time is 5 hours so it will feel dry within that time. But, its full cure (which you’ll learn about later on in this blog post) is not for 3 days so it’s not advisable you use it until then.

Paint Dry Times: Touch Dry vs. Recoating Interval vs. Full Cure | MyBoysen

Recoating Interval

Next, there’s the recoat interval. This refers to the time you have to wait in between coats of paint. Certain paint products, notably topcoats, will need more than one coating applied on the surface so you get even coverage, protection, and color.

Using Boysen Quick Drying Enamel as an example again, its product guide recommends applying 2 coats of this product. After applying your first coat, you will then need to wait 8 to 12 hours to apply the second one.

Make sure to follow this as it helps ensure your paint job will result in a smooth finish that adheres properly to the surface.

Paint Dry Times: Touch Dry vs. Recoating Interval vs. Full Cure | MyBoysen

Full Cure

Full cure is the time it takes for your paint to truly, fully dry. At this point, the paint has reached its maximum hardness and durability, and you can use your painted surface without worrying you’ll damage the finish because it hasn’t completely dried yet. As you may have guessed, full cure takes the longest out of the three drying times.

For Boysen Quick Drying Enamel, 3 days are needed before it’s fully cured. You can start counting the days after you’ve applied the second coat. After the full cure has elapsed you can enjoy a job well done and a beautiful paint job.

Hope this has been helpful! Feel free to come back to this blog post if you get confused between the different dry times when working on a paint project.

If you have any questions or inquiries about Boysen products, send an email to ask@myboysen.com. You can also call the Boysen Technical Service Department at (02) 8363-9738 local 413 to 418 during office hours for a one-on-one consultation.


Jill is a writer on a continuous journey to learn about paint and share them with you, the reader. She has an interest in the technical side of things but also thoroughly enjoys playing with colors. She likes calm greens, quiet blues, and mellow yellows best.

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