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Mod Podge Dimensional Magic vs Resin

Mod Podge Dimensional Magic vs resin – which one should you pick? Find out the differences and what projects we recommend making with each.

Mod Podge Dimensional Magic vs Resin which one do you choose

“Mod Podge Dimensional Magic vs resin – which one should I choose?” This is a question I get a lot, and it’s time to answer! They are VERY different products even though they get compared all the time. Oh, and in my opinion?

They’re both awesome products and ones I use regularly. This post is not to try to convince you why the Dimensional Magic is better . . . it’s to educate you about when it’s appropriate to use each.

Dimensional Magic or Resin?

Well – let’s start with the similarities. Both of them are used as finishing layers on projects to create thicker, glossier layers than normal decoupage mediums such as Mod Podge can provide.

If you had two projects next to each other, one featuring resin and the other with Dimensional Magic, I’m not sure that you could tell the difference. The mediums both look glassy and provide a hard finish that makes a tapping noise when you tap on it. They’re both very solid.

But – they also have a lot of differences.

When You Would Use Dimensional Magic

Dimensional Magic was originally – back in the day – developed for paper and jewelry crafts. Remember when scrapbooking was hot, hot, hot? This product was developed to make the clear, glossy effects you see on some stickers and other paper crafts. Here are some things that make it different from resin:

  • it’s an acrylic, waterbased product
  • it can be used right out of the bottle (no mixing)
  • it’s non-toxic, meaning no materials in this product are toxic or injurious to humans (including children) or animals
Mod Podge Dimensional Magic Bottles

If you want a glossy effect with a little dimension on something, you’ll simply pop open the bottle and squeeze this on, then let dry overnight to get that clear, glassy surface.

Now while It’s a hard surface – it can be dented if you try, AND it shouldn’t be left in water. It will start to break down. This is because it’s acrylic and that is what acrylic products do!

My primary use for Dimensional Magic is small areas: jewelry pendants, earrings, cards, etc. However, I have used it on items as large as trays (we’re talking like 9″ x 12″). It works well, but you’ll use several bottles of it. You may want to use resin on trays (we’ll get to that).

Just because Dimensional Magic is non-toxic, that doesn’t mean it’s food safe. It’s not. Do not put food items directly on top of this product when dry. You should also wash your hands if it gets on them. You don’t need to wear gloves or protective equipment while using DM (unless your skin is extra extra sensitive).

When You Would Use Resin

As far as I’m concerned, resin is used for larger projects or where heat and water resistance is important. Here are the main differences from Dimensional Magic:

  • it’s an EXTREMELY durable product – more so than Dimensional Magic
  • it’s toxic while mixing – contains hazardous components so you must wear gloves and protective equipment such as a mask or respirator if you are sensitive
  • as I just mentioned, it’s a two part product that requires mixing and stirring

Plaid makes a brand of resin called Mod Podge Resin, that is a true resin and nothing like a decoupage medium. There are also many other two part resins widely available on the market.

The packages consist of a resin and a hardener that you will mix together, being sure (of course) to follow all safety precautions on the label.

Mod Podge Resin

When or where would I use resin? On countertops, tabletops, large scale art, to make jewelry (the beads/bracelets/earrings themselves), trays (that are larger or need to be heat/water resistant).

I think of resin in more of a DIY/home improvement or serious jewelry maker capacity, where Dimensional Magic is my go-to craft supply for a similar effect, but on a smaller scale.

Am I starting to make sense?

Oh, and in case you are wondering, you can embed items (confetti, glitter, buttons, etc) into BOTH Dimensional Magic and resin.

Resin can be used in a lot of the same places that Dimensional Magic can be used, but I wouldn’t mix it for smaller projects or paper crafts. For the effort I’m going to put in to mix, I only use resin when I need a REALLY tough solution. Which, sometimes the project requires!

Dimensional Magic and Resin

When I’m considering Mod Podge Dimensional Magic vs resin for a project, here are the questions I would ask:

  • How durable does my craft need to be?
  • What is my surface – wood, paper, etc?
  • How big is the area that I’m covering?
  • Does my project need to be heat or water resistant? No Mod Podge is waterproof. However, resin is!

Let me know if you have questions about either one – or usage – in the comments!


Thursday 16th of May 2024

Good explanation of the two products. I was going to used DM on the floorcloths that I made BUT I now know that it would not be the product to use. I'll go back to spraying them with acrylic spray from Home Depot for waterproofing them. Thanks


Saturday 3rd of February 2024

This sounds like a great product but you mention that it can dent. Does that mean it wouldn’t be suitable for acrylic painted coasters? Also, I dot paint rocks that sometimes go outside. Does it withstand different environmental conditions? Lastly, the resin - does it not require a UV lamp to cure?


Thursday 30th of November 2023

Can you use Mod Podge Dimensional Magic on homemade Christmas ornaments made from wood?


Friday 1st of December 2023

Yes you can!


Saturday 4th of November 2023

Does DM yellow over time as I don't think resin does ..

Laura Brown

Friday 13th of October 2023

I have cardboard coasters I collected as souvenirs from my boyfriends hometown in Czech and I want to seal them to preserve them and keep some as well as give to the boys in my family as gifts.

I don’t know what product to buy? I think I will just buy Modpodge 3D magic but to make it more waterproof and heatproof, should I coat it with the dishwasher one first, followed by the 3D magic or how should I go about this? I had never even heard about modpodge until 5am this morning lol and I left me project too late to fuss with Resin (something I’ve also never used 🙈).