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6 Quick Fix-Facelift Ideas for Builder Grade Bathrooms ALL Under $120

I'd like to share some bathroom face-lift projects we tackled a few months ago. EACH can be done in 6-12 hours, some less some more (if paint is involved) but nothing over a day. When I know I can finish a project in a day (or so) I am definitely quicker to start/try it. Our '06 builders grade bathroom was plain old ugly and odd! They put carpet in the vanity area & a one piece "acrylic" counter with single sunken sink (should be two) plus oak dbl cabinets.
We would rather go on vacation than fund a full remodel, so a face-lift was all we could do on our modest income. Everything we did was under $120 total...and that was spent mainly on flooring & paint. ( I wasn't planning to post. I had painted the cabinets before I took my BEFORE Photo.)
Time: 4 Days Cost: $120 Difficulty: Medium
1-Paint Sink & Counter
We used Rustoleum counter-top paint. (See below) Cost $15-20. Before we painted we sanded the smooth surface and we removed the faucet. Painting took the longest since it was a dark grey on a white surface. we used 4 coats and thought we ruined it by not waiting long enough in between coats. We ended up with a neat distressed look & feel. I really like it! I have no clue how to duplicate sorry! 
2-Spray Paint Faucet & Fixtures
I had some fixtures from an old kitchen remodel but they were brushed nickel. Nothing a little Rustoleum "oil rubbed bronze" spray paint can't help me with! It's only $7! I didn't want to buy a new faucet either so it was spray painted too. It's easiest to spray outside to get every nook & cranny, then reinstall. If you can't, just tape off and use brown paper bags all around to make sure no off spray gets anywhere.
3-Paint Cabinets
I used chalk paint on the cabinets. I removed all door/drawers, wiped clean with Windex all surface cleaner and painted. I used Plaid "Plaster", I had this leftover from another project. As the doors dried I painted the body of cabinets.  I used a thin coat of paint so it was easy to distress with 240 Grit in spots. I used 80 grit in others to get a real used nautical rustic wood look. Rehung doors/drawers and distressed more to my liking.
4 Mirrors-Make borders
There are medicine cabinets on each side and a huge 5x3ish mirror. I put a burlap rope border around med cabs with a hot glue gun and painted a wood 2x4 border for large mirror. My husband installed it after we connected all 4 sides with wooden pegs to ensure it stays in place. I apologize again for such little detail.
5-Arts & Crafts
it's fun to make your own nautical items. I did a cpl fun Stencils paintings on burlap since it is my kid's bathroom. I used the pirate skull and another themed piece. Costs nothing but it sure is fun.
I could not wait to rip out that old gross carpet! This can take awhile to get all the nails out of subfloo. We got 12x24 Traffic Master self adhesive vinyl tile. It went down quick and were easy to cut around the edges. What a HUGE improvement they make!! This is about .99 cents a sq ft. and the bulk of budget.

Materials used for this project:

  • Plaid Chalk paint, Rustoleum countertop paint, oil rubbed bronze spray paint, sand paper 80-240 grit, burlap rope   (Home Depot, Lowes, Hobby Lobby)
  • Traffic Master 12x24 self adhesive vinyl tiles

Ask the creator about this project

  • Wendy
    on Jun 18, 2017

    Great ideas! Love the nautical theme, thanks for your post! :)

  • KarenTerry Lilly
    KarenTerry Lilly
    on Jun 25, 2017

    What did you do about the top of the drain that's at the bottom of the sink? And did you seal the counter and sink with something? (I apologize if that was addressed but I missed it.) Our counter and sinks are all in one also.

  • Jacque
    Jacque Atwater, CA
    on Jun 27, 2017

    No, the type of paint we used is an all in one. It is THICK! So using 2-4 coats is more than enough no sealer is needed with Rustoleum countertop paint. I recommend it. You won't be able to reuse your brush...it stinks and is difficult to remove. So beware what you wear use protective gloves and mask!
    and we taped off the sink drain while painting grey but we did spray paint it bronze to match faucet. Easist way is pull plug then completely cover drain hole edge and then use a razor to cut around tape so you get a nice clean edge and it will look like an even spray. It looks like a bronze store bought drain! Do 2-3 coats!

    • Jacque
      Jacque Atwater, CA
      on Jan 17, 2018

      Hi Stacy! Sorry for late reply (I took a holiday away from everything!). Thank you!! Wow pink?!! Makes you wonder "what were they thinking?!"🤔Huh?! lol obviously u can't paint the toilet (or maybe you can? Idk?!) but everything else is up for a transformation! It's been over 6 months and no problems whatsoever! It is a seriously sturdy paint because I have used Clorox in/on sink and have had no fading, chipping or cracking. The faucet still looks great too! I have noticed chipping (oil rubbed bronze rustoleum spray) in my master bath, where I also painted the faucet but in place vs. completely removing it, SANDING, then spray painting it in 3 coats, and reinstalling as I did in here. It's important to sand in between coats to make sure it adheres to metal surface....which I forgot to do in my master!! I do think removing it also gave me ability to get EVERY nook & cranny too. Also, nope no sealing was necessary because it's an "all-in-one" countertop paint. If you paint your tub, there is a another rustoleum product we used in a fiber glass shower. I think it works best on porcelain because it's more porous. Sanding in between coats will also be important there given the amount of water it will see. I would LOVE to see your before/after pics if or when you do a remodel!! Good luck 👍🏼 and have a blast!! ❤️ Jacque

  • Eroque022810
    on Jul 5, 2017

    Jacque, please paint the door/doors, it looks like there are 2 doors. Also, be grateful for the 2 vanities, I have a one sink one vanity and long counter at least you have storage! 😉 When you can change out those blue cups that you have on counter shelf, store as much as you can in vanity,maybe for now just place that shelf in vanity. I know this is real life and I am happy that you posted I learned alot, but all that personal hygiene stuff should be out of site,you have 2 medicine cabinets, or like I said just put in vanity. It distracts from the beauty of the counter and vanities you worked hardest on. OK well, everyone has their own tadtes, likes and dislikes,so don't be offened,you hit some great points but fell short on others ,for me.

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