Oil-based enamel paint dries to the touch between eight and 24 hours, while water-based enamels dry to the touch in about one hour. Some fast-dry enamels dry in as little as 15 minutes. Drying times vary based on temperature and humidity.
Enamel paints are those with hard, glossy, opaque finishes. They are usually washable once fully hardened and cured and can be heat-resistant. In painting with enamel paints, curing times are as important as drying times. An oil-based enamel paint is fully cured when it has dried to the touch because it dries from the inside out. On the other hand, a water-based enamel may take up to several weeks to cure, as it dries from the outer surface inward. While the paint is curing, it remains vulnerable to damage.