FAQs About Acrylic

Get answers to frequently asked questions about acrylic


How much does a sheet of acrylic cost?

The price of an acrylic plastic sheet will depend on the thickness, dimensions, manufacturing process, and grade of acrylic. View pricing for a wide variety of acrylic sheet grades and sizes. For large quantities of plastic sheet, volume discounts are offered through Curbell Plastics. Simply fill out our Get a Quote form and a plastics specialist will contact you shortly. Shop our clearance acrylic sheet for remnants and overstocked inventory.

Are there different grades of acrylic?

Yes, acrylic plastic comes in many different grades that enhance its performance for specific applications and purposes. Grades include general purpose clear acrylic, abrasion resistant, impact modified, light diffusing, bullet resistant, sign-grade, non-glare, antimicrobial, and digital print. See our acrylic page for a list and descriptions of different grades of acrylic.

What acrylic colors are available?

Acrylic is available in black, white, red, green, yellow, and many other colors. Acrylic is also available in a range of opacity including translucent, transparent, mirrored, and opaque. Find the list of acrylic colors and opacity options on our acrylic page or view our acrylic color chart to find the perfect shades for your next project.

What sizes of acrylic sheet are available?

There are many sizes of acrylic sheet available in popular thicknesses and dimensions. A complete list of standard acrylic sheet sizes can be found on our acrylic shop page. To meet your specific application requirements or for easy shipping have your acrylic sheets cut-to-size.


Can acrylic plastic be machined or fabricated?

Yes. Acrylic is easy to machine, fabricate, thermoform, and bonds well with adhesives and solvents.

What is the best way to assemble acrylic?

Acrylic can be assembled using adhesives, double-sided tapes, or mechanical fasteners.

Adhesives and Double-Sided Tapes - Plexus® methacrylate adhesives and 3M VHB tapes can bond acrylic to acrylic and many other materials.

Mechanical Fasteners - If using mechanical fasteners allow room for thermal expansion and contraction. See the OPTIX® Acrylic Fabrication Guide for more details.

Can acrylic be painted and screen printed?

Yes. Acrylic can be easily decorated using paints produced specifically for acrylic or vinyl. Enhanced grades of acrylic like OPTIX® DA are specifically designed to provide optimal adhesion of UV curing inks without the need for adhesion promoters. See the OPTIX® Acrylic Fabrication Guide for more details.

Can acrylic be thermoformed?

Yes. See the OPTIX® Acrylic Fabrication Guide for more details.


How should I clean acrylic?

To clean acrylic, wash with mild soap or detergent and lukewarm water using the bare hand to feel and dislodge any caked dirt or mud. A soft cloth, sponge, or chamois may be used, but only as a means of carrying water to the plastic. Rinse well. For more information about how to clean acrylic plastic, see our article “How to Safely Disinfect and Sanitize Plastics.”

Is acrylic resistant to harsh disinfectant cleaners?

No. For a list of compatible disinfectants for OPTIX® acrylic, see Disinfecting Acrylic, Polycarbonate, and PETG Sheet.


Is acrylic strong?

Yes. Acrylic exhibits high tensile strength (i.e., is stronger) compared to other transparent plastics. Explore properties of acrylic, or, compare acrylic against other plastics using our interactive plastics properties table.

Is acrylic breakable?

Yes. While displaying outstanding strength and stiffness, acrylic has a fairly low Izod notch impact rating and can be broken comparatively easily. Review properties of acrylic.

Can acrylic plastic be used for outdoor signs?

Yes. Acrylic has superior weathering properties compared to many other transparent plastics. UV stable, sign grade impact modified acrylic sheet is available for both indoor and outdoor signage, displays, replacement windows, and skylights. When choosing plastics for outdoor applications a Curbell Plastics expert can assist based on your specific project requirements.

Is acrylic chemical resistant? 

Generally speaking, acrylic has poor chemical resistance, although it is resistant to many common household chemicals and disinfectants. For a list of ‘attack’ or ‘no attack’ chemicals, see the OPTIX® Acrylic Fabrication Guide.

Can acrylic be used for food applications?

Acrylic is available in FDA complaint grades. If FDA compliance standards are critical to your application, contact us for material selection assistance.

Does acrylic have antimicrobial properties?

An antimicrobial grade acrylic is available. OPTIX® AMGARD™ acrylic sheet is formulated with silver ion antimicrobial technology that protects the sheet surface from microorganism growth and remains active for the entire life of the product.


What is acrylic plastic?

Acrylic (also known as Plexiglas®) is a clear, strong, stiff plastic. It exhibits glass like qualities—clarity, brilliance, and transparency—but at half the weight and many times the impact resistance of glass. Acrylic is also available in many colors.

What is the difference between extruded and cast acrylic sheet?

Extruded acrylic sheet can be manufactured to any length, which often results in cost savings since yield loss can be minimized when parts are cut from custom sheet sizes. Extruded acrylic is also the easiest grade to thermoform and the easiest to bond using solvent cements.

Cast acrylic sheet has better chemical resistance and superior machining characteristics compared with extruded acrylic. Continuous cast acrylic also offers these features and generally has a more uniform thickness and offers larger sheet sizes because of the nature of the continuous cast manufacturing process.

What are some acrylic applications?

Acrylic is found in illuminated and non-illuminated outdoor and indoor signage, windows and skylights, architectural glazing, commercial and residential lighting, LED diffusing light panels, safety shields, sneeze guards, wall features and art installations, artwork frames, display cases, graphics, sculptures, partitions, wayfinding, printing, POP displays, aircraft, and automotive applications.

Is acrylic the same as Plexiglass?

Yes. Acrylic brands include Plexiglas®, OPTIX®, ACRYLITE®, Lucite®, and KSH®.

What’s the difference between acrylic and polycarbonate?

View Acrylic vs. Polycarbonate for a side-by-side comparison.

What does it mean when acrylic sheet is masked?

Acrylic sheet is “masked” with a thin plastic film or paper covering to prevent the surface of the material from being scratched. Depending on whether the acrylic sheet will be fabricated or machined, paper might be preferred over film for some users.

What are the advantages of acrylic?
  • Acrylic has outstanding stiffness and strength and many times the impact resistance of glass
  • Acrylic is easy to fabricate, bonds well with adhesives and solvents, and is easy to thermoform
  • It exhibits glass-like qualities at half the weight of glass
  • It has superior weathering properties compared to many other transparent materials
What are the disadvantages of acrylic?
  • While strong and stiff, acrylic is less impact resistant than other clear plastic materials
  • Like many amorphous plastics, acrylic typically exhibits poor chemical resistance

Have a question about acrylic that wasn’t answered here? Ask a Plastics Expert.