It is not easy for everyone to cut Styrofoam until you know the right steps and use appropriate tools. To break the Styrofoam material easily, you need to follow the steps given below. Otherwise, it can lead to uneven edges. Things you will need before cutting the Styrofoam are butter knives, credit cards, candle, serrated knife, electric knife, power saw, hot wire cutter, dust mask, safety goggles, and cutting board. Here are the steps to cut Styrofoam.

Create a breaking line

First, you need to create a breaking line using a thin and sharp object. You must penetrate the Styrofoam to make a straight cutting line. Make a groove in the foam using even pressure. You can do this using a credit card or a butter knife or key. In fact, you can use any sharp and thin object.

Now, break the foam along the cutting line. Situate the Styrofoam on the countertop or the table for the effective outcome. The scored line along the surface of the edge on the countertop is the best way to break the Styrofoam.

Next, you need to gently press down along the cutting line to make a clean break. Remove the excess Styrofoam with a craft knife if necessary to create a clean break.

Cut the Styrofoam

Use a waxed kitchen knife for cutting the foam. Wax your serrated kitchen knife. You can do this easily using a candle and running the blade of the knife over time a few times. We suggest using a white candle so that there is no colored candle wax on the Styrofoam.

Next, cut the foam with the knife using sawing long motions. Don’t do this fast, otherwise, you will make an incorrect cut. You must do this steadily and at the same time, apply pressure on the knife while moving the knife to decrease the chances of crushing or breaking the foam.

How to cut Styrofoam with an electric knife?

You can cut the Styrofoam with an electric knife. Make sure you choose a quality product such as a fish fillet or carving knife. This will help you create clean and precise cuts in the foam.

Place the electric knife on the Styrofoam along the cutting line that you have made already. Don’t put too much pressure on the knife. However, you must force it a bit so that the serrated blades can cut through the foam gently.

How to cut Styrofoam using a craft knife?

You can use a craft knife to cut this type of foam easily. A craft knife is great for cutting thin and small pieces of foam. However, if you have foam thickness above 1 inch, we don’t recommend using this tool.

Compared to the serrated blade, which can tear the foam, the craft knife has much sharper blades that compress or flatten the foam. If used skillfully, you can avoid uneven and malformed cuts in the think pieces of Styrofoam.

To have precise cuts, again, we recommend using a craft knife. This cutting tool is good for creating v-cuts and bevel-type cuts in the Styrofoam. Cut through the foam using slow movements and create a shallow mark in the Styrofoam.

Once you make the initial cut, you can run the craft knife easily through the foam. Make sure you do this several times to create deeper cuts. Continue this until you have completely cut through the foam from top to bottom.

While cutting the foam, it is important to change the blades in the knife. For example, if you have dull blades, it will lead to uneven and rough slices in the Styrofoam. This way, you can’t achieve the desired cut.

How to cut Styrofoam using a hand saw?

Another tool you can use to cut Styrofoam is the hand saw. Coping saws, hacksaws, and compass saws can create straight cuts in the foam. Don’t use a saw that has a flexible blade. It is because the flexible blade can wobble in the Styrofoam and result in uneven cuts.

You can cut the foam using a hand saw with long and sawing motions. Make sure you put enough pressure on the saw to increase the probability of accurate cuts. Don’t put too much pressure. Again, balance is key to avoid crushing the foam.

How to cut Styrofoam using power saws?

Power saws such as band saws, jigsaws, and scroll saws are good for cutting wood. At the same time, these tools have been found useful in cutting through Styrofoam. Any of the power saws can create clean and effective cuttings. You can use any of these tools for large and bulky pieces of Styrofoam.

Since there are many types of power saws, you need to follow the instructions for the one you want to use to cut the foam. When using this type of saw to cut the foam, you need to wear safety goggles. Otherwise, the residual sparks can damage your eyes.

How to cut Styrofoam with a hot wire?

You can also use a hot wire cutter to cut through the Styrofoam. If you have don’t have this type of tool at home, you can quickly buy it from your local craft store. This is an essential item when it comes to home improvement projects.

Hotwire cutters can melt through the Styrofoam. The heated wire is useful for creating smooth edges. So, you can use this type of cutter to create your desired shapes and designs of the foam.

To use the hot wire cutter, you need to apply pressure on the tool along the cutting line. The pressure must be consistent. Don’t apply too much pressure and proceed with caution. Otherwise, it can cause burns.


What is the best tool to cut Styrofoam?

A hot knife is our top choice for cutting Styrofoam. A heated knife is ideal for making small cuts and leaves minimal mess compared to a normal serrated knife. The key is to use a sawing motion when cutting instead of pushing straight down.

How do you cut Styrofoam without making a mess?

How do you cut Styrofoam cleanly?

Use an electric kitchen knife, such as a carving knife or a fish fillet knife, to create clean cuts in Styrofoam. Place the electric knife on the foam along the desired cutting line. Do not exert pressure on the electric knife, but allow the serrated blades to gently cut through the Styrofoam.

How do you seal Styrofoam?

How do you smooth Styrofoam?

SAND IT! Styrofoam™ brand foam acts like fine sandpaper when rubbed together. For smooth, rounded edges, rub two pieces of Styrofoam™ brand foam together. To shape larger pieces, cut out the basic shape and then sand the final details into the shape.

Can you shape Styrofoam?

Styrofoam is one of the easiest materials to shape by normal means e.g. slicing with sharp knives or a hot-wire cutter, sawing with serrated blades, rasping with files, and smoothing with sandpaper. There are other styrofoams, such as orange/pink or white, which are even finer and slightly denser.

What paint can I use on Styrofoam?

Water based paints or acrylic craft paints are the best to use on Styrofoam. Water based paints, specifically poster paints, work well with younger kids as they can get a really good and thick coverage of paint on the polystyrene shape.

What can you coat Styrofoam with?

Things You‘ll Need

White EPS Styrofoam can be hard coated with liquid polyurethane. Keep your Styrofoam props, cosplay outfits and other projects protected with a hard-surface coating. You don’t need to rely on messy fiberglass resin to harden your Styrofoam. Simply use a two-part liquid polyurethane hard-coat system.

Can you waterproof styrofoam?

For that reason, although polystyrene is a waterproof plastic, styrofoam isn’t entirely waterproof or moisture resistant. This is done by waterproofing the styrofoam using spray-on coating or plastic sheeting, but more on that later.

Can you clear coat Styrofoam?

To make plastic coat you can use just about any Polystyrene or Styrofoam, but if you want clear plastic coat use just the white Polystyrene or Styrofoam. Continue adding Polystyrene or Styrofoam to the jar until it takes several minutes for the Polystyrene or Styrofoam to dissolve.

How do you treat Styrofoam?

Donate it. Go to, type in “polystyrene” and your zip code, and it will tell you where your closest drop-off site is. The Alliance of Foam Packaging Recyclers (AFPR) has a list of centers that will accept your excess EPS via mail.

Will Mod Podge melt Styrofoam?

Wondering if you can Mod Podge on Styrofoam? The answer is yes, you can!

Can I burn Styrofoam?

Is it toxic to burn Styrofoam? Let us be very clear we state that you should never burn Styrofoam or another polystyrene foam material! The reason is because when Styrofoam is burned it can release unhealthy levels of carbon monoxide and black carbon into the air, especially in the hot environment.

Does vinegar dissolve Styrofoam?

Vinegar and more specifically “weak acids” will not dissolve styrofoam (the frequently used designation for foamed cups etc.). Acids will soften the thin walls of the plastic bubbles that make up foamed polystyrene.

Can you light styrofoam on fire?

Styrofoam and Fire Safety

But while it can withstand some heat, it can also easily catch fire when exposed to an open flame. Burning Styrofoam produces a sooty kind of smoke, indicating that some of the chemicals in the compounds aren’t breaking down fully and are likely releasing toxic chemicals into the air.

Are Styrofoam cups bad?

Polystyrene foam contains the chemical styrene, which has been linked to cancer, vision and hearing loss, impaired memory and concentration, and nervous system effects…the list goes on.

Is Styrofoam cancerous?

In the case of polystyrene, tiny amounts of styrene may remain following manufacture and it’s this substance that may migrate. In 2014, the National Research Council in the US reviewed the evidence and concluded that styrene is “reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen”.