How to Age and Distress a Mirror

4 Hours

Hi friends! Hope you’re enjoying your Spring and having nicer weather than we’re having in the Midwest. I have to keep myself busy while Spring really arrives here. So my latest DIY project is on how to age and distress a mirror for a cool and inexpensive makeover.

But first a little about the mirror. Last year when our neighbors were moving, they were selling several pieces of furniture they no longer needed. I bought a cute little chest of drawers ($20) that had this mirror on the top portion. Using the chest of drawers for a garden chest on my back porch and set the mirror aside for this project.

I love any piece of furniture that has great little details in the woodwork! Like in this other piece I restored a few years ago!

When you paint and accent with antiquing or a bronzer, it stands out more and makes any piece just look way more beautiful!

How to age and distress a mirror

For this piece I went with the same color of chalk paint I used on this antique desk above.


  • Stripping gel
  • sanding block
  • chalk paint (ebony)
  • metallic paint
  • metallic finish
  • bleach
  • water
  • spray bottle
  • paper towels & old rags
  • plastic scraper
  • foam & paint brushes
  • Sand the mirror frame or remove old paint and wipe down
  • Remove mirror backing and apply a layer of paint stripper. Allow to sit for a few minutes (doesn’t take more than 5 minutes) Then scrap away! wipe off access. Wipe down when done with a wet rag to remove all remaining strip gel.
  • Mix 50/50 water/bleach solution in spray bottle. You will need very little of it! Spray on and leave for less than 2 minutes! Wipe off with wet paper towels and stand back and see how you like it. If you want more distressing–repeat.
  • Clean off all bleach water with wet rag and allow to dry completely.
  • Apply 2 coats of the metallic paint on the entire back of mirror, allowing to dry between each coat. The metallic paint will show through in the areas that you distressed and will look so pretty!
  • You’re now done with the back. Once paint is dry, you can reattach the backing to the mirror.
  • On to painting! 2 coats of chalk paint- allow to dry, then sand to distress on edges and wherever you want. I also added a bit of metallic finish by rubbing it on high points and edges for added accenting.
  • Optional: I rubbed on a transfer decal on the front of the mirror.

What do you think?

This was my first attempt at distressing a mirror and I’m super happy with how this turned out. Now I’m ready to attempt an oversized mirror that I removed from the dresser I used to make my kitchen island.

I love finding a trail from where a piece has been or came from. This was a label I found on the back side of this mirror- apparently a Canada piece.

Anyway this mirror is making its home in the Lacebark room upstairs. You’ll just have to visit to see how pretty it is!

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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


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4 of 6 comments
  • It's beautiful. Now I wish I had a mirror like that to work with.

  • Elizabeth Haire
    Elizabeth Haire
    on Mar 21, 2021

    LOL. I had to smile. I look into an OLD MIRROR every day. My mother bought this back in the late 1940's... And the second is from my Grandma's house... I have no idea how old it is. Sometimes it's what you live with daily that can use a facelift...maybe even the item being reflected, like my face!?!😲

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