How to Refresh and Add Style to Your Stairs for Only $30

3 Materials
1 Hour

My stairs were old, tired, and a bit outdated. They truly were in need of a major overhaul, but that wasn’t in the budget. I decided to use some inexpensive removable wallpaper from Target and, lo and behold, this has been one of my favorite projects to date. They don’t look too tired any more.

DIY Stair Makeover

In my house the stairs are right off my front door. They can be the first thing that people see in the foyer. My stairs were kind of blah and boring.

Tools and Materials

  • Coconut oil
  • Baking soda
  • White vinegar
  • Wallpaper
  • Tape measure
  • Scissors or utility knife



The first thing I had to do was tackle a thick grime that had built up on the hand rail. Obviously, I have reached a point in my life where I have no shame. The top part of the railing is how dirty it had become and no amount of cleaning seemed to help. So, at a professional cleaning ladies recommendation, I used coconut oil and baking soda. The bottom half of the railing shows how it removed everything that I couldn’t get off with other cleaners.

Make a Cleaning Solution

Make a Cleaning Solution

I mixed them together in a small dish to a runny paste like consistency and used a microfiber cloth to apply it and rub it off. It was kind of Karate Kid like...wax on, wax off. I also used white vinegar on some areas, too.


Now for the fun part! All that prep work was for my new wallpaper risers. This is from the Opalhouse collection at Target.



I measured across the step and mine was 34 1/2 inches. My risers measured 5 1/2 inches.



I cut 34 1/2 inches off the roll. Then I cut that piece into 5 1/2 inch pieces.



The fact that I could pull it off and reposition it was a blessing. It is on securely so don’t think it will come off when you don’t want it to come off. The distressed look to the pattern turned out to be a blessing as well. Any imperfections are harder to see with the distressed appearance.

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Wallpaper Stairs

Stick Wallpaper on Risers

It is so much easier to do risers than a wall so I highly recommend this easy project. I think it will build your self confidence.

Quick DIY Staircase Makeover

Easy DIY Staircase Makeover
Before and After DIY Staircase Makeover

I love a good before and after, especially when it is easy on the budget! And check out how clean and shiny that hand railing looks?!?

Updated Staircase

I simply love how these stairs turned out! Have I inspired you to change your stairs up? Let me know how you updated your stairs in the comments down below!

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Have a question about this project?

3 of 42 questions
  • Susie Sasso Horvath
    on Mar 10, 2020

    And your cleaning concoction didn't ruin the finish? I'm wondering if I could use it on my kitchen cabinets?

    • Stacy Davis
      on Mar 10, 2020

      No, it didn’t do any damage to the finish. I’m sure it would great on kitchen cabinets.

    on Mar 15, 2020

    would this work on old cabinets to remove grime to give them a new look?

  • Amaryllis
    on Mar 16, 2020

    How much coconut oil & baking soda

    • Stacy Davis
      on Mar 17, 2020

      Start with A 1/4 cup melted coconut oil and add teaspoons of baking soda until it resembles a powdered sugar glaze. If it is really dirty and you don’t feel it is cutting through the grime add more baking soda.

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