Send Cans Of Paint In The Mail

Paint is considered a corrosive material and is listed with the U.S. Postal Service as an ORM-D. This means that the Postal Service considers paint a hazardous material that may be mailed only for individual sale or use. Paint may be shipped as domestic mail via air transportation, Parcel Post or Standard Mail. The total weight allowance for shipping a box of paint is 25 pounds. Each individual container of paint inside the box must be under 16 ounces and tightly sealed. The final box must be labeled properly with the correct forms filled out if shipping by air.


1. Check that the paint you wish to mail is tightly sealed. Wrap it in a layer of bubble wrap. This is considered your primary packaging.

2. Place the wrapped paint inside of a secondary package container that is compatible with the primary paint packaging, such as a plastic or metal box with a secure lid or tight clips.

3. Fill the outer layer cardboard box with packing or cornstarch peanuts and submerge the secondary packaging into the foam peanuts. If you do not have foam peanuts, plastic foam chunks or large bubble wrap will help to cushion the paint packaging so that it is not touching the sides of the outer box and will not be hurt if abruptly jarred.

4. Tightly seal the box with packaging tape. The box must not exceed 25 pounds in total weight.

5. Write the shipper’s name on the bottom middle of the top side of the box. Directly below the shipper’s name, write “Consumer Commodity ORM-D” for ground shipping or “Consumer Commodity ORM-D – Air” for air shipping. Complete the address beneath this line. Make sure to write the return address in the upper left corner of the box.

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6. Write on the side of the box in large print “Surface Only” or “Surface Mail Only” for surface deliveries.

7. Fill out the shipper’s declaration for dangerous goods and affix it in triplicate on the side of the box.