How can I refinish a 'white melanine' desk with same color?


How can I refinish a 'white melanine' desk/bookcase?

Both items are function but the surface (mainly the top) is all worn & chipped. Instead of buying new furniture, is there any way to refinish both with a white glossy finish? Or, is there some kind of thin board I can put over the surface of each?

q how can i refinish a white melanine desk with same color
  21 answers
  • Deb K Deb K on Nov 10, 2021

    Hi Trudi, you can get some melamine paint and redo the surfaces of the desk & bookcase

    hope this link gives you some guidance,

  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Nov 10, 2021

    You could get a piece of plexiglass for the top, just smooth out the edges. Here is a link on how to make the edges smooth:

    And how to paint melamine:

  • Be sure to clean it well and scuff the surface with some sandpaper. Use a good primer and a high-quality latex paint.

  • on Nov 10, 2021

    You can color match the drawers and use a melamine paint the same color to fix them up.

  • Cheryl A Cheryl A on Nov 10, 2021

    you could paint it, you can use peel and stick tiles on top or drawers for colors, you could use contact paper

  • William William on Nov 10, 2021

    Clean well. Scuff the surface with fine grit sandpaper. Prime and paint

  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on Nov 10, 2021

    You can replace the top with a new material or go with something else. I would probably look into countertop material as it would be more durable. You can also put luan, which is a thin plywood, over it but you would want to stain and finish it or paint it.

  • Janice Janice on Nov 10, 2021

    Sand the chipped and worn areas with a fine sandpaper and then prime and paint the entire desk with a good paint labeled for melamine. It will turn out practically as new.

  • Vimarhonor Vimarhonor on Nov 10, 2021

    Hello. You might want to go to your local big box lumber area and look at the thin veneer and mdf options. I have made them for my childrens desk and cover them with decorative fabric but they could be painted. Also they do have a whiteboard for sale if it fits the dimensions of your desk it would already have a finish you might just need to paint he circumferential the edges.

  • Mogie Mogie on Nov 10, 2021

    How To Refinish Laminate Furniture in 4 Easy Steps

  • Trudi Trudi on Nov 10, 2021

    Thank you for all you great ideas. After reading, I think I'm going to shy away from 'repainting' the tops. Seems like a lot of work for just 2 surfaces.

    I cleaned them thoroughly yesterday; and while it's far from perfect; it's good enough for now, especially since I have a few items covering the bad areas. Perhaps one day I'll invest in a glossy white desk that I come across.

    I was thinking of putting something on top of the desk/bookcase. There is a 'plastic' store near me. I could see if they have a very thin kind of plastic veneer in a glossy white plastic that I can put over the desk. Since it's a rectangle, I could have them cut it to size and fit it on top of the desk! I don't think contact paper would work for this. Any feedback on 'plastic'

    • Trudi Trudi on Nov 10, 2021

      Here is a current photo of the desk. The small bookshelf next to it is on 'coasters' otherwise it would be the same height as the desk!

  • Michelle Leslie Michelle Leslie on Nov 11, 2021

    Hi Trudi, it's not always easy to get the same smooth glossy finish on melamine once it's been damaged. We tried icon If I may suggest, rather buy some inexpensive pine to create a new faux top that you can paint or stain to match.

  • I would lightly sand it, prime it and then paint in a similar color. Perhaps you can get a glass top or a table pad to help prevent future scratching!

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Nov 11, 2021

    Yes you could use MDF, but how about using something like Contact paper?

  • Trudi Trudi on Nov 11, 2021

    Contact paper will wrinkle (if I do it)...I'm going to try and find a very very thin plastic (cut to size) to put over the desk top. I'll see what they have and then decide. Thanks for all the useful tips. I'll save the links.

  • Kmdreamer Kmdreamer on Nov 11, 2021

    You could cover with contact paper

  • Trudi Trudi on Nov 11, 2021

    I got a piece of white laminate plastic to put over my desk! It's not perfect; if they had been nice enough to cut it to the dimensions I needed; it would have looked a lot nicer. It was very difficult to cut with a utility knife; so it's not 100% even but it will do for now!

  • Sand it well, paint it with a good white spray paint and then add a glass top.

  • Betsy Betsy on Nov 29, 2021

    Hi Trudi: Since you already got your laminate piece, you can sand the sides, gently, to make it a bit more pleasing to the eye, and then paint the edges. Start with a rough grain of sandpaper, or a sanding block, if there is a lot of material to remove, and then move to a finer grit to finish it off smoothly. You only need to do the bits you see :) You can even get molding to put on the edge if that suits you better.

  • Annie Annie on Nov 30, 2021

    Melamine paint would work just fine on your desk!

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Jan 02, 2022

    Contact or other Sticky backed Plastic should do the trick!