All You Need To Know About How To Paint Laminate Furniture

Do you want to refresh your home decor without changing furniture? Why don’t you try with a  brushstroke? Easy and practical, you can repaint a coffee table, bookcase, vintage dresser, or you can even paint your built-in laminate kitchen cupboards a different colour. It gives your home new energy and it’s like a breath of fresh air!

Woman paint and renew an old furniture

The main trend of the moment: redesign your old furniture. An attractive solution because it allows you to customize your pieces and at the same time think about the planet! Are you ready for some great tips on your paint job and some good ideas that will let you put brush strokes on your furniture quickly and cheaply? 

How to paint laminate furniture: Step-by-step tutorial

If you want to repaint laminate items of furniture, it’s great news! You’ll see that this project is not as complex as some might think! However, make sure to follow these steps to get the best results possible!

Laminate is an artificial glossy, smooth, non-porous material that looks like real wood grain (“print” or “film”). Manufacturers use this product to offer the appearance of higher-quality wood on less costly wood-composite furniture.

Some of the most common issues are:

  1. When the paint/primer is wet, it starts to bubble.
  2. Once the paint has dried, there is a lack of adhesion.

Both suggest that the paint did not adhere to the surface properly. All of your hard work will quickly scratch off if this is the case. And that’s something we don’t want! So, let’s do this DIY project step-by-step!

Step 1: Cleaning the surface 

Start by cleaning and degreasing your furniture with a cloth or sponge. You can use water and soap, alcohol, acetone, or dissolute ammonia. Be sure to wear a mask and ventilate the room properly. Give it enough time to completely dry before moving to the next step.

Step 2: Light sanding the whole piece of furniture

Since the laminate surface is a slick, non-porous one, it’s best to scuff it gently. You got to sand the laminate with 150-220 grit sandpaper because it’s the best way to get the primer and paint to stick correctly. This stage will ensure that your paint job lasts!

Hands sanding a wooden furniture

But be careful not to over-sand and rip the laminate right off with your sander. So, go easy on the sanding. Take the sandpaper in your hand and go over the item softly, as if you were wiping down your windows.

Step 3: Priming

It is an important step, as you have to deal with very smooth surfaces, and the priming may not be perfect if you paint the wood laminate directly. The unique laminate sublayer helps the paint adhere well (especially to MDF or particle board materials). Choose your primer based on the type of paint. One coat is enough, but two coats can be applied if desired.

Step 4: Paint laminate furniture

For the renovation of your furniture, choose acrylic paint. If you are painting laminate kitchen furniture or bathroom furniture, make sure to opt for water-resistant colour paint.

Apply the first coat of paint to cross the lacquer roller’s movements (paint vertical strips and then “cross” the passages by painting horizontal stripes). Use paintbrushes to paint details, corners, and places inaccessible to the roller.

Don’t hesitate to add a second coat of paint, especially if your furniture is dark. Brush the finishing touches if necessary. You might use paint after one coat of primer and gently sand in-between each coat with fine-grit sandpaper for a smooth finish.

Chalk paint is a simple and convenient way to make furniture, cabinets, and even upholstered pieces look amazing. Chalk paint is a  latex-based paint with a soft, matte finish and is available in a variety of colours for a farmhouse chic look. You can add chalk paint directly to the object you’re painting, unlike other ones, without the need to remove or sand the original paint or varnish.

If you want a smoother finish, you can use a sprayer on the laminate surface. It’s easier to spray paint large surfaces than using a paintbrush or a roller. Start at the back or inside to get used to the application mode. Then spray paint the outside of the object and let the product dry overnight.

Always wear a set-up mask when using spray paint. Read the instructions to make sure the spray paint is suitable for your surfaces before you buy it. If necessary, apply a second layer when the first layer is dry.

Step 5: Use a sealer or topcoat to protect your work

There’s no point in putting all your effort into creating something wonderful that won’t last. That’s why by using a sealer or a topcoat, you make sure that your job will stay intact for as much as possible. Find the right one depending on the type of paint that you went for, and you can rest assured that your newly made laminate furnishing will keep you company for many years to come.

Hand painting a table using roller

Some painting tips to consider

Even if you’re an experienced DIYer or painter, there are some things that you might haven’t thought about. Better safe than sorry, right? Have a look!

  1. Protect your workplace with cloth, plastic pieces or cardboard on the floor.
  2. Any part that has had time to dry can be scraped with a knife and then painted again.
  3. Be delicate with your furniture for a few days. All the paints take some time to fully dry.
  4. Be patient with drying times. The quality of the finish will be better.
  5. If you have small defects between the layers, give a fine sandpaper touch.
  6. Work with water-based products. The quality of modern furniture no longer requires solvent products for this type of work.
  7. Use bright paint colours or matte ones. Paint an article of furniture in red, blue, or colour the feet of your chair a sunny yellow. The makeover of old furniture captivates the eyes towards details that change everything.

How to clean and maintain your laminate items 

Laminated furniture appeals to professionals, as well as individuals. From the kitchen to the bedroom, its functional and decorative assets make it a must-have for our interiors. Because of its properties, laminate furnishing is particularly resistant. But how do we clean and maintain it?

To clean your laminated furniture, it’s almost the same as cleaning your laminate floors. Wipe it with a sponge soaked in hot water and white vinegar, and dry with a clean cloth. You can also spray a product to clean your furniture if you need to remove dirt. Also, you can apply household alcohol to remove traces of fat effectively. However, stains of black wax pencil, shoe polish, or pen are much more difficult to remove. To get rid of them, the only effective product is methanol.

Also, to remove traces of hardened foods, mix a little baking powder with water to make a thick paste. Then dip a cloth into the dough and rub the substance. The baking powder is a gentle cleaner that can remove dried stains without damaging the furniture.

Before handling the cleaning products of your furniture, wear gloves to protect your hands. It would be best if you did not use a pure alcohol cleanser. It is recommended to dilute it in water. Also, avoid using an abrasive sponge or powdered product to prevent scratching your furniture. Do not try to clean it with bleach, chemicals, or acidic products, as these could damage it. 

What are the benefits of painting your old laminate wood furniture?

To change your home decor, it is not always necessary to replace old furniture with a bunch of new or throw them in the trash bin. Indeed, you can customize the old ones to obtain more trendy furniture. It will allow you to redo your decor without spending all your money, which is ideal when you are on a small budget. Therefore, it is recommended to paint your laminate articles of furniture instead of throwing it away. Here are some reasons why you should repaint furniture:

Painting restoration old chair before and after

1. A fun project

Wondering if painting your laminate furnishing is worth it? This DIY project will save you money, but it will also give you an opportunity to express your creativity and ideas. Let your imagination do the hard work and see your place becoming your little paradise.

2. Saving a doomed piece of furniture

You pick up any item of furniture. If it is not in good condition anymore, there are not many things to do. You can either decide to throw it away, get a professional to restore it or do it yourself. But you have nothing to lose if you try to repaint it.

3. Give it value

Some furniture has no value after some years. That’s the way it is. However, this doesn’t mean that it is of poor quality. So it could be an excellent item for your DIY makeover. Painting useless furniture allows you to let your imagination and talent run wild. It is you who gives value to the piece by devoting your time and talent to repaint it.

4. Painting laminate furniture to bring it back into fashion

Do you want to make an item (bookshelf, table, etc.) look more in line with the current furniture trends? Then you should probably try changing its colour. It might seem like a minor thing, but trust us! It will give it a whole new look!

5. Environmental-friendly and an economic solution

Bringing a laminate cabinet back to life is a good method to save money and avoid polluting the environment. If you create the art-deco of your furniture yourself, you will spend much less than buying new furniture. So, better reuse whenever possible to show a responsible, eco-friendly attitude.

6. Saving family heritage

Repainting your small laminate item is, above all, a method you can use to safeguard your family’s heritage. Especially if the furniture has a significant family value.

7. Having a unique room at home

By repairing your laminate bookcases, coffee table, or even your kitchen cabinets, you will benefit from a unique decoration. 

Hands painting with spray an old chair in pink

Wood laminate furniture is trendy. Choose to maintain these surfaces regularly with natural products to keep them for as long as possible. 

Repainting a laminate item of furniture is a way to make the old look new and appealing again. It’s cost-effective and eco-friendly too! So, what are you waiting for? Grab your tools and start your project. You’ll see how much fun it is and how proud you will be of your work afterwards.

Good luck with your paint laminate furniture project!

Scroll to Top
Send this to a friend