How to Make Magenta Acrylic Paint? Color Mixing Guide

Last Updated on March 21, 2024 by Masha Eretnova

Often most mistakenly named “pink,” “purple,” or “violet,” but magenta has its own identity. Aren’t you curious about how to make magenta?

How to Make Magenta

To make magenta using acrylic or oil paints, use equal parts of these colors:

  • Cadmium red and cobalt blue
  • Maroon and quinacridone rose
  • cadmium red and permanent rose can mane bright magenta
  • purple + red can make dark magenta

To darken the shade, use green,brown or dark green. To make a shade close to Fuschia, add red and white or yellow to lighten the shade.

It will be exciting to see what’s beyond magenta and learn how to make it, so sit back and learn with us through this article.

What is magenta paint?

Magenta is a color often associated with violet, purple, or pink. In reality, magenta is a purplish-red or reddish-purple—a shade of purple leaning toward red.

Magenta is not an actual color like purple. You won’t see it on a rainbow and in the visible spectrum because it does not have its wavelength.

The human brain perceives magenta, a mixture of blue and red light.

There is a big discussion on forums about if magenta and primary red are the same colors and if magenta is a primary color.

Well, in CMYK color wheel, magenta as M is a primary color indeed. While color wheel many of us know is based on RBY model where red is primary. Some art students and painted claim that using red as primary doesn’t give you correct results while mixing paint and they do use magenta as primary color instead.

In RBY model artists say that red + blue produce magenta. But at the same time they say it about purple. So it is still a bit confusing.

Another explanation is that red, blue and yellow are primary color of light (we perceive colors with light) while magenta, cyan and yellow are primary color of pigments (the pigments are mixed to get new colors).

I see a big difference in how magenta and cadmium red work. Sometimes magenta works better than red, ex., hen you want to mux purples. But sometimes red will give you better results, ex.,when you are mixing orange.

Magenta on the top, and cadmium red under it

Where is magenta in the color wheel?

color wheel

Magenta is not included in the traditional color wheel; however, it is considered a secondary color. Magenta can be understood as a cool version of the traditional primary warm red (Cadmium Red).

In the RGB model, magenta is red-purple, although it is darker than magenta when mixing lights. It appears in the CMYK model. 

That is also why magenta is a mysterious color. It isn’t included in the color wheel but can be found in the CMYK model.

CMYK color model is known for color printing, which means Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black. It is also known as the subtractive colors.

Now that we know where magenta is in the color wheel let’s talk about magenta in digital arts.

Magenta is #FF00FF (hex code) in the digital world. It comprises 100% red and blue and 0% green.

You may use the color conversion table below to use magenta well in your designs.

Color Conversion

The hexadecimal color #FF00FF has RGB values of R: 100, G: 0, B: 100 and CMYK values of C: 0, M: 1, Y: 0, K:0.

What are some shades of magenta?

Like purple and other colors associated with it, magenta has a wide range of shades. Let’s explore some shades of magenta readily available in the market.

Magenta color meaning

In psychology, magenta perceive a friendly and welcoming feeling. It leaves people with the urge to help others, and magenta brings happiness.

Although, like any other color, magenta has flaws, like it perceives anger, carelessness, and intimidation.

But the welcoming vibe it has counters all those negativities. 

People who like magenta are said to be cheerful, rational, understanding, and loving, as magenta is known to symbolize kindness and harmony.

What two colors make magenta?

I find that maroon + Quinacridone rose gives the best brighter magenta while cobalt blue and cadmium red make good Quinacridone Magenta.

My maroon was burnt umber with cadmium red.

I first mixed maroon, then added rose. As you see maroon with white don’t give magenta, more like violet or mauve.

The two colors that said to make magenta are cadmium red and cobalt blue OR maroon and white.

But, you must be careful with it because of:

(a). the mixture will look a lot like violet than magenta if more blue is added; and 

(b). the mixture will look like a fuschia or maroon color instead of magenta if more red is added.

In actuality, the same is said about purple and brown, that to get it you need to mix red and blue. Not all shades of blue have potential to create magenta. The closest result is truly with cadmium red and cobalt blue, but anyway it will look like dark or Quinacridone Magenta and not like bright magenta.

Cobalt blue and cadmium red can create dark magenta.

Another two colors we can use to create magenta are said to be maroon and white. But for me it also doesn’t work. I find that maroon + Quinacridone rose gives the best magenta.

Read also: Mix of Yellow and Purple: What These 2 Colors Make? Surprising results

How to make magenta watercolor paint?

Watercolor is an excellent medium for mixing colors, and here’s how you can make magenta with watercolor paint.

I’ve tested pebeo watercolor. In watercolor, you can make magenta mixing cadmium red only with cobalt blue or crimson with prussian blue.

How to make magenta watercolor paint

If you add too much blue you will get muddy brown or dark purple color. By adding white you can adjust transparency.

Step One: Prepare your materials:

  • Watercolor
  • Palette
  • Water
  • Watercolor Brush
  • Watercolor Paper

Step Two: Dip your watercolor brush into the water, and get a bit of your red watercolor.

Step Three: Brush it on your watercolor paper or mixing palette if you use watercolor on the tube.

Step Four: Clean your brush, get another one, and repeat step two, but replace red with blue.

Step Five: layer it with your red on the watercolor paper and/or mix it with the red on your mixing palette if you use a watercolor tube.

Step Six: Adjust your mixture by adding red, blue, or white until you achieve your desired shade of magenta.

Read also: Watercolor vs Acrylic: 21 Differences Between Acrylic and Watercolor

How to make magenta acrylic paint?

Acrylic paint is one of the most common mediums for color mixing, especially for beginners.

For all beginners: How To Mix Acrylic Paint? – Your Complete Color Mixing Guide

Here are the steps on how you can make magenta using acrylic paint.

  • Prepare your acrylic paints (red, blue, white), palette, and palette knife for mixing.
  • On your palette, put 1:1 blue and red acrylic paint. Mix them well.
  • Add red, blue, or white to lighten your mixture.

Pro Tips:

  • Use Prussian blue or ultramarine shade of blue, which are both dark and cool. You may add it gradually to your red to avoid overpowering the other color.
  • You may use dark green to darken your magenta and white to lighten it.
  • Use rose to make magenta brighter
  • Experimentation with the ratios and shades of your base colors is the key.

Another way to make magenta using acrylic paint is to use magenta pigment and gesso acrylic.

Here’s how you can make magenta using clear gesso acrylic:

  1. Prepare clear gesso acrylic and magenta pigment.
  2. Blend the clear gesso acrylic and magenta pigment together until you achieve your desired shade.

As you may notice, some search results for creating magenta suggest combining red and blue; it isn’t wrong. Still, you must add a bit of white to lighten the mixture to magenta. 

Prepare red, blue, and white acrylic to further elaborate and follow the steps below.

Step 1: Combine red and blue to create violet.

Step 2: Gradually add red to your mixture until you create a maroon.

Step 3: Add a bit of blue to your maroon.

Step 4: Add a bit of white to your mixture to lighten it to magenta.

How to make magenta oil paint?

Another beginner-friendly medium you can use is oil paint, and like acrylic paint, there are two ways to use it to make magenta:

  • Use tubed oil paints.
  • Use pigment and linseed oil.

Here’s how you can make magenta oil paint using pigment and linseed oil:

Step 1: Prepare your materials:

Step 2: Take a reasonable amount of linseed oil and put it on your palette.

Step 3: Mix your magenta pigment with your linseed oil using your palette knife.

Step 4: Mix them well and adjust by adding linseed oil or magenta pigment, whichever is necessary.

Here’s how you can make magenta oil paint using readily available oil paints:

Step One: Ready your palette, palette knife, and oil paints (red, blue, and white)

Step Two: Add 1:1 part of your blue and red oil paint to your palette.

Step Three: Using a palette knife, mix them.

Step Four: Adjust your oil paint mixture by adding red, blue, or white if you want your magenta lightened.

How to make magenta without red?

You can make magenta without red by using the color combinations below:

How to make dark magenta?

To darken your magenta paint, you can use dark green or black. Just add a bit of either color and mix it with your magenta.

Gradually add dark green or black until you achieve your desired dark magenta.

If black paint is unavailable, blend raw umber and ultramarine blue. As for green, it will lessen the richness or saturation of magenta because they are complementary colors.

How to make bright magenta?

Magenta is a cool color like green and blue. Unlike yellow, red, and orange, magenta does not have a warm color. Making it bright will not be hard enough. 

A bright magenta looks like red-heavy purple or purplish pink.

Here’s how you can make magenta bright:

  • Use a bright and cool shade of red.
  • Blend it with a bit of white color until it results in bright pink color.
  • Lastly, add a small amount of blue color and mix until you get your desired bright magenta shade.

Note: You can also add a bit of purple color to your mixture.

Best Magenta Paints

Nowadays, readily available magenta paints are available in the market. Check them out!

Acrylic Paints:

Liquitex BASICS Acrylic Paint, 118ml (4-oz) Tube, Quinacridone Magenta
  • Thick, creamy with satin finish; Good pigment load
  • Retains peaks and brush strokes; Ideal for learning color theory and color mixing
  • Includes 4-oz / 118ml tube of acrylic paint
  • Intermixable with Liquitex Professional Acrylic Paint Colors and Mediums.
  • Conforms to ASTM D4236; Safe for educational use

Oil Paints:


What colors can substitute magenta?

There are colors you can use as alternatives if magenta is unavailable.

Here are the colors you can substitute for magenta:

Permanent Rose: Permanent Rose is a color you can easily adjust to make magenta. 

It is pinker than magenta, but with the help of blue, you can make it look like magenta.

Quinacridone Violet or Quinacridone Magenta is closer to magenta; however, blending it with White or gesso medium makes it pinkier, which is why Quinacridone Violet is better.

When working with white and gesso medium, quinacridone violet blended with red is a great choice to make magenta.


How to make quinacridone magenta?

To make quinacridone magenta, prepare your palette, palette knife, and paints (red, blue, and violet).

Blend equal parts of red and blue, and mix them until fully incorporated. 

Lastly, gradually add violet paint to your mixture until you achieve your desired shade.

Note that the more violet you add, the deeper the color will be.

How to make fuchsia?

To make Fuschia, you will need red, purple, and pink paints, a palette, and a palette knife.

Blend equal parts of red and pink paint on your palette, mix them well, and gradually add purple. Mix them until you achieve your desired shade.

You may use a bright shade of red, like crimson, as Fuschia is kind of bright.

How to make magenta dye in Minecraft?

Here’s how you can make magenta dye in Minecraft:

Step One: Collect lilac or allium.

Step Two: Put them in the crafting inventory, then voila! You’ve got a magenta dye.

Another way to create magenta in Minecraft is to combine red and blue dyes.

  • Put the red and blue dyes in the crafting inventory.
  • Once you get purple dye, put it in the crafting inventory with pink dye (from peony or pink tulipS). Then voila! You have a magenta dye.

How to make magenta color icing?

To make magenta icing, you can blend red and blue food coloring and tweak it with a bit of violet or dark green.

Remember that the color can be lighter once you combine it with the icing.

What colors make magenta paint?

Red, blue, and white are the basic colors that make magenta. Alternatively, you can use permanent rose and blue or quinacridone violet and white.

Is magenta pink or purple?

Magenta is a reddish purple or purplish red.

How to make purple with acrylic paint?

To make purple with acrylic paint, you can use 2:1 quinacridone rose and ultramarine blue.

Related: Mix of Yellow and Purple: What These 2 Colors Make? Surprising results


Learning how to make magenta is a fun experience. It broadens your knowledge when it comes to colors and enhances your creativity.

Now that there is an addition to your color mixing knowledge, you can explore and try using other shades that might give you a color you’ll love.

Magenta is a beautiful color that compliments other colors like green, and I hope with the help of this article, you’ll be able to use it as often as before.

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! See you on our next color mash-up adventure!

Last update on 2024-06-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API