How to Paint an Xbox One Controller

An Xbox One Controller is a thermosetting plastic and requires a bit of prep work to ensure proper adhesion. Like any plastic, particular attention should be paid to cleaning and making sure it is primed with a suitable coating before applying any paint. Product suggestions are listed below each step for assistance.

Step 1


Disassemble your controller. You can take apart a genuine Xbox controller using a T8 security torx screwdriver, aftermarket controllers will likely require a Philips screwdriver.

Step 2

Clean all plastic that is going to be painted with soap and water. You should clean it further with a plastic cleaner such as the one listed below. When the controller is manufactured the plastic is contaminated by waxy coatings known as mold release agents. They can remain on the surface of the plastic and will repel coatings if not removed.


Step 3

Scuff all plastic using a gold or grey scotchbrite / scuff pad.


Step 4

Apply a plastic adhesion promotor (plastic primer), a light to medium coat. Allow 15-20 minutes of drying before the next step.


Step 5

Apply Basecoat, if you are taping off a design you can wait approximately 30 minutes between colors. You can use any solvent or waterborne paint but be cautious if you are crossing between them on the same project. You can use most automotive paints found at your local supplier.


Step 6

Apply Clearcoat after allowing your final coat of basecoat to dry for 15-20 minutes. To create the best possible shine use a 2K clearcoat that utilizes a hardener. With 2K aerosol cans, you can press in a button before using that activates the product for use. Apply clearcoat in medium-wet coats, not too dry. We recommend the Spraymax 2K aerosol shown below. However, any 2K clearcoat should be fine. You can also use a 1 part clearcoat, but it will not provide the same level of gloss and durability.