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Grey painted desk with black chair in front in an office.

How To Paint Laminate Furniture

Learn how to paint laminate furniture and cabinets easily these tips and step by step instructions. You’ll avoid frustrating mistakes and have a long-lasting piece that shines!
Prep Time 3 hours
Cook Time 4 hours
Total Time 7 hours
Servings 1 dresser
Author Rachel
Cost $50




  • Remove doors and drawers. Unscrew hardware.
    kitchen drawers laid out to dry,
  • Clean using a mild cleaner that won't leave a residue. If the plastic layer is loose from the substrate, make sure to reattach it with a construction adhesive and allow to dry.
    Wiping and cleaning wood.
  • There are many different types of laminated surfaces, and many can’t be sanded. However, using an orbital sander and 120 grit sandpaper may allow you to add more gripping tooth to the surface. Test in a very inconspicuous area if you wish. Most of the harder plastics won’t sand very well if at all. Don’t push it if it isn’t working.
    Ryobi orbital sander.
  • Prime with a quality primer. If you need additional coverage, use two coats. Allow to dry 24 hours.
    Painting a dresser white with a paintbrush.
  • Paint with 2 coats of paint. You can use either a paint sprayer or brushes and rollers. Use rollers for larger, flat surfaces. If brushing, brush with the grain and always from one end to the other. If paint starts to dry, don't go back over it.
    Grey desk with brass handles up close.


More Tips for Painting Furniture
  1. Get the right tools. A few extra dollars will save you a lot of heartache and frustration. I have a helpful post on painting without brush strokes here. I prefer fine taklon brushes.
  2. Tape off any edges you don’t want painted such as inside doors.
  3. Use a lint free -microfiber roller across all flat or large surfaces for the smoothest finish.
  4. You will get the best results if you brush details or corners then roll before the paint has time to dry.