Asked on Feb 02, 2016

Does deglosser really work?

by Victoria
I have varnished kitchen chairs with lots of spindles. I don't think my arthritic shoulder can take the sanding. I would love to paint them. Has anyone tried deglosser on varnished chairs? I would hate to degloss, prime and paint and then have it all rub off soon with wear.
Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experience. Have a wonderful day!
  9 answers
  • Deglosser does work because it is a chemical (think turpentine and mineral spirits) and make sure to wear good refinishing gloves and steel wool works with a cotton rag to wipe. I use this product when I paint glossy piece.I just bought an ugly $5 chair and cleaned it up with steel wool and Formby's furniture refinisher and boy is a pretty chair. Just make sure to clean the chair when done and do not paint immediately after using this. I always wait a day or two.
  • Elizabeth Elizabeth on Feb 02, 2016
    I would visit a paint or hardware store. I don't know if your arm could take spray painting but you may be able to avoid stripping all together. There are a lot of spray paints out there that you can just spay over now. Check with a professional but either I'm lazy or we'll just say too busy. I don't have the time to strip a bunch of chairs. Good luck.
  • Heidi Heidi on Feb 02, 2016
    Talk to someone at Ace or local hardware/paint store. I painted my varnished kitchen cabinets. He suggested roughing it up with sander (to give it some tooth, i.e. something for primer to grip onto), primer and paint, they have held up quite well. No need to use chemicals to remove varnish.
  • Shari Shari on Feb 02, 2016
    You do not have to strip or sand. I have lost count of how many pieces of furniture (over 35) I have used KleenStrip liquid sandpaper/deglosser on prior to painting. I've used it on all types of existing finishes like laminated MDF furniture, veneered or previously painted pieces and that glossy cherry toned furniture with absolutely no problems. I also used it on 2 builder-grade bathroom vanities. As long as the existing finish is in good shape (not bubbly or rough like orange peel, or there aren't gouges you want to sand out), it is absolutely NOT necessary to sand. The deglosser will accomplish the same thing without all the tedious, time-consuming sanding. Frankly, I think using a good quality BONDING primer is the most important step in getting a painted finish to stick long-term. I can also tell you that even if you do sand, sanding does not guarantee your paint will stick forever on areas that see a lot of wear and tear like the chair seats or places where people grab the chairs to move them. Painted furniture does eventually show where it naturally gets the most use. It's called "distressed" and it's a highly sought after look for painted furniture. Frankly, I'm not fond of the highly distressed look for the painted furniture I have in my home so I don't put any protective top coat on things I paint for myself. Then when pieces do start to show some wear and tear, or dings, I can easily touch them up.
  • Jane Jane on Feb 03, 2016
    Yes deglosser will work. I would do a little sanding to smooth out imperfections. We have used deglosser or it's called liquid sand paper and It works great. Use protection in a well ventilated area.
  • Linda Santo Linda Santo on Feb 04, 2016
    I used deglosser on my dining room chairs quite a few years back. Worked great until my new kitty decided to use one as a scratching post! Oh, well. Time for another coat of paint!
  • Debi53 Debi53 on Feb 06, 2016
    I use deglosser all the time for painting projects. Just be sure to follow the instructions carefully. Be sure to turn the cloth you are using to apply the deglosser so that you have a clean area that can absorb any residue on the piece. Wear gloves meant for chemicals to protect your hands. I sometimes go back and do a second coat of deglosser before priming. I have never had my paint chip off on any piece.
  • Susan Susan on Apr 22, 2018

    I want to use gel stain on the lid of a cedar chest. The existing finish is in near perfect condition. Will a deglosser work if I want to use gel stain?

  • Victoria Victoria on May 04, 2018

    I was told to use it on my wood paneling and avoid the sanding. The paint does not adhere well and I am very disappointed. Wish I had hired someone to sand.

    • See 2 previous
    • Leigh Peterson Leigh Peterson on Feb 12, 2020

      I want to paint over an existing stained( mini wax) wood ceiling and I’m breaking my arms and next trying to sand. Do you thing deglosser would work? I’ve never used it