Asked on Feb 10, 2013

Can you paint laminate cabinets?

I have a friend that wants to paint her cabinets. Have you tried this? Do you know if this is possible?
  24 answers
  • Sue Curwin Sue Curwin on Feb 10, 2013
    Yes, you can indeed paint laminate cabinets! I'm actually going to do that to our kitchen cabinets in our cottage next summer. And, I have my husband's blessing, lol! My friend over at The Simple Craft Diaries, has talked about a primer that she swears by, that she used on a laminate shelving unit in her updated bathroom. She has said the primer is super durable. Good luck!
    • Cheryl Cheryl on Apr 18, 2016
      @Sue Curwin Would you mind providing the name of this "super durable" primer?
  • You bet you can. Just call any Sherwin Williams and they have the perfect primer to use.
  • I have done this many times - sand and prime well! Also make sure they are free of grease and grime. Use a top of the line paint (such as Duration) in a satin finish. I top coat my cabinetry for durability. I only use water-based products and they have not had a chipping problem yet.
  • on Feb 11, 2013
    Thank you, you all have been very helpful!
  • Roxanne Gross Roxanne Gross on Feb 11, 2013
    Would love to see the before and after. I have these exact cabinets and have thought about paint for years. Best of luck
  • Jeffrey Whitmer Jeffrey Whitmer on Feb 11, 2013
    Paint 'em all the time. Scuff up surface a bit with sandpaper. Gives primer something to grip to. Wipe weel with denatured alchol, or something that doesn't leave any film. As well as using the correct primer. XIM makes a black label latex primer that is great. And apply paint with an HVLP sprayer for smooth results. Or check out
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  • Jayme Jayme on Feb 11, 2013
    Rustoleum Cabinet Transformations is WONDERFUL!!!! I just refinished my bathroom cabinets this past weekend with it and they were exactly like the ones you have pictured no sanding involved, and they are beautiful..
  • Rhoda V Rhoda V on Feb 11, 2013
    Yes, definitely! Zinsser has a shellac-based primer that will stick to anything and it is very durable as a primer. It does stink though!
  • Emily Biggs Emily Biggs on Feb 11, 2013
    La Craie furniture paint is great for painting laminate cabinets. We just painted a large laminate cabinet in our gallery that acts like a cash wrap stand. First we painted on Zinsser primer since the surface is plastic and doesn't sand all that well. Then we painted with La Craie, waxed and topped with Fiddes Hard Wax Oil.
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  • Bernice H Bernice H on Feb 11, 2013
    GO FOR IT! I have painted laminate furniture, book cases, countertops, blah blah blah..just be sure to seal it well so no eventual chipping. We have mobile home laminate cabinets, (fake wood look), and they are ALL painted. I didnt seal them and after about 10 years they are chipping..I am ignoring it, because I am 10 years older and 10 years lazier! haha be sure to show pics when done! whoppeeee!
  • Peace Painting Co., Inc. Peace Painting Co., Inc. on Feb 11, 2013
    Go to Sherwin Williams and purchase XIM primer. It even sticks to glass, tile, etc. It's always a good idea to scuff them up first. Just clean and rinse them well. With the right primer, you can top coat them with anything. Best, Charles
  • on Feb 12, 2013
    You guys rock! Thank you!
  • Michelle Hazelrig Michelle Hazelrig on Feb 12, 2013
    Annie Sloan Chalk Paint. No sanding or priming.
  • Susan B Susan B on Mar 02, 2013
    home depot has a kit. just bought and is shipping for 47.00 regular 75.00. go check it out. 3 colors. no muss no fuss.... no prep. specifically for that!
  • Susan B Susan B on Mar 02, 2013
    the sealer/bonding agent is INCLUDED in the kit. hope sale is still on....good luck.
  • Susan B Susan B on Mar 02, 2013
    sorry....more to add. i believe it is sher/williams
  • Georgia Skeeter Georgia Skeeter on Mar 03, 2013
    Wonder if there is wear, oil, fire damage on the cabinets, I don't want to paint them and then you see the previous damage. What can I do then?
  • Debi McCoy Debi McCoy on May 06, 2013
    If you use chalk paint you don't have to prime!!!
  • Emily Biggs Emily Biggs on May 07, 2013
    Sorry, but I just have to step in here and comment about not needing to prime if you use chalk paint. I haven't found this to be the case. I know many of the chalk paint companies like to advertise no stripping or priming but I think they are starting to back off these claims. My cash wrap desk in my gallery is laminate and in order to paint with chalk paint I used Zinsser primer. You can't really sand laminate to get enough tooth for the paint to hold on to because laminate is plastic.
    • Terra Gazelle Terra Gazelle on Dec 11, 2015
      @Emily Biggs I use a deglosser over laminate and do not have to prime. The deglosser gets rid of the gloss and gives it tooth. You can, of course, prime if you want..But I have found it really not necessary.
  • Janet Janet on Jan 27, 2016
    What is the difference between laminate and formica cabinets?
    • Cheryl Cheryl on Apr 18, 2016
      @Janet Formica is a brand of laminate. Like Kleenex is a brand of tissue.
  • Susanroy36 Susanroy36 on Jul 30, 2016
    I realize you have lots of answers, but i'd like to share that I purchased some paint called Diamondhard Acrylic and simply washed my laminate covered cabinets with soap and water and let dry. Then I wiped them down with rubbing alcohol, let dry and then rolled this amazing paint on with a foam roller. My gosh, stuck like glue, and that was 15 years ago! No wear, not one chip.
  • Kde12210848 Kde12210848 on Oct 07, 2016
    There is a special paint you can buy at paint stores you will not find it at Walmart, Home Depot etc. Onlh in regular psint stores. I spoke with several different people as well as internet research and talked with the salesman and went with a product called Cabinet Coat made by INSL-X. Great paint for cabinets all I did was said everything lightly wash with a good degreaser rinse well make sure they are dry before painting. I done all my kitchen cabinets as well as two bathroom vanities and they came out great and this paint will not scratch. You can get almost any color made as well. Good luck!
  • Gail Gail on Jan 20, 2017

    My laminate countertops were pink  when I bought my house. I'd never seen anything like them. Cleaned with TSP (Very inexpensive, available at Lowes, etc.). Painted with a primer tinted as dark a gray as I could get it. Then I painted them charcoal black--regular interior paint. Worked with the gray primer on top to make them look like soapstone. After that I used three coats of satin polyurethane.

    People ask me if they last. I tell them that I pretend they are marble or even new laminate--always use a cutting board! or sometimes place a dishtowel on the counter when I'm doing something that might scratch them. I am very happy with how they look and how I can use them.