I have used a Winsor & Newton fixative for my dry pastel works. However, when I touch it, the pastel still comes off.
Is there any way I can completely fix my pastel paintings?

I sprayed fixative several times during painting, and few days after each time that I used it, I painted the new layer on it. And after the painting got completed I also sprayed fixative for one last time.

For each layer I used fixative just once; I was afraid that the colors might get so much darker.

  • Have you tried using a final fixative? Workables aren't meant for a final coat, and a final fixative will likely need more than one coat--the can should give you instructions.
    – Allison C
    Commented Jun 1, 2020 at 18:45
  • @AllisonC Thanks so much! I hadn't used any final fixative, I will try them.
    – user9225
    Commented Jun 2, 2020 at 11:50
  • many pastel artists would not use fixitive on the final stage of their work because of colour changes, but then would frame the finished work under glass to protect its surface. Commented Jun 18, 2020 at 8:48

2 Answers 2


No fixative will make pastels totally sealed and irremovable, at least not without totally changing the look of the pastels (typically darkening and dulling them). So it is a balance between protection and look. Fixing will make the under layers workable, strong enough to take layers above without too much mixing, but a pastel drawing will always be fragile.


I don't do any work with pastels, but my friend does. I asked her what a good one would be, and she said that the Sennelier fixative works pretty well. It's a final fixative, and it gives a matte finish as well. It works best if you use a few thin coats, drying in between. It's about $16, which is the cheapest one, but it's also really good. Good luck with your projects!

  • 1
    something else that might work is just a regular clear coat spray. Like the stuff used over paint. Commented Jun 25, 2020 at 19:21

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