How to Paint Bathroom Countertops

Ready for a bathroom update? Follow our tips and tricks for painting laminate countertops.

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Black and Beautiful

Are your bath surfaces looking a little dated? If your countertop is laminate, you're in luck. Set aside a few hours over the weekend, and a newly painted surface will be yours. Be sure to limit this project, though: Ordinary paint isn't a food-safe finish, and it won't stand up to the heat, moisture, and abrasions that kitchen countertops are subjected to daily.

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What You Need

  • Fine-grade sandpaper or sanding block
  • Wiping cloth
  • Paint roller
  • Primer
  • Latex paint
  • Clear-drying latex polyurethane

Step 1

Begin by sanding the surface with fine-grade sandpaper to lightly scuff away the gloss, being careful not to sand away the color. Wipe clean, then lightly roll on a coat of primer for nonporous surfaces. When the primer is dry, roll on a base coat of latex paint. Use a roller to avoid brushstrokes in your finish. 

*Tip: For melamine shelving and cabinets, wash with a TSP solution before priming.

Step 2

When the latex paint is dry, apply three to five coats of clear-drying latex polyurethane, making sure each coat dries before adding the next one. You can use spar varnish for even greater durability, if you don't mind the yellowing effect this coating will have on the paint underneath.

*Tip: Don't attempt to paint over scratched or water-damaged melamine—those surfaces should be replaced.

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