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How to Paint Laminate Furniture

Laminate furniture is popular because it’s inexpensive and easy to put together, but it doesn’t always have a look that people enjoy. Although it may seem impossible to paint laminate, it’s actually a simple project that you can do to change the look of these pieces as long, as you follow the right steps.

Clean the Furniture

Image via Flickr by HALDANE MARTIN

Image via Flickr by HALDANE MARTIN

The first step to painting laminate is making sure you have a clean surface to work on. A soft rag and warm water will easily take off any dust lingering on your furniture. However, if your furniture has grease or stains on it, you’ll need to make a solution of equal parts water and vinegar to get it ready for painting. For tough marks, you might have to use a TSP solution instead. If you have to use either solution, make sure you clean off all the residue before you move on to the next step.

Sand the Furniture

Laminate is a non-porous and slick surface, so without sanding, the paint will have a difficult time sticking on it. It’s best to use fine-grit sandpaper because you don’t want to sand your furniture too much and tear right through the laminate and into the particle board underneath. For the best results, take the sandpaper in your hand and run it up and down your furniture like you’re wiping down a countertop. After you’re done, use a vacuum and a dry cloth to remove all the dust that remains from sanding.

Use a Primer

After you’ve sanded the furniture, it’s time to add a coat of primer to the piece. Primer is another substance that gives the paint something to stick on to after it’s applied. When you’re picking out a primer to use, make sure it says it’s for shiny surfaces. Use a high-quality brush to apply long, even strokes of the primer. Try to get a coat of primer that’s as thin and even as possible. Apply one or two coats of primer, and then give it time to completely dry.

Apply the Paint

After all the sanding and priming, it’s time to apply the paint to your laminate furniture. You can use any type of paint, but an interior latex paint works best. It may take up to four coats for you to get an even and smooth finish on your furniture. For the best results, wait a day between each coat of paint to give it plenty of time to dry.

If you notice any bubbles showing up through the paint, then it’s not properly adhering to your furniture. If this happens, you’ll need to do some extra sanding and priming on that spot to remove the laminate still left there.

The most important part of this entire process is sanding and priming the laminate furniture. Without doing so, your paint won’t have a good surface to stick on. Therefore, whether you don’t like the look of laminate or you want to personalize your furniture, follow these steps to easily paint it any color you want.

Share your laminate furniture design ideas in the comments section below.

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