Keeping Up With Mrs. Smith

When a perfectionist moves into a fixer-upper…

Repainting An Ugly Bathroom Countertop

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Once again, I am linking up with Pancake and French Fries’ weekly William Morris project.  To learn more about the project click here!

I am looking forward to the coming spring because it will allow me to finish up the bathrooms.  Since our house doesn’t have central heat, these rooms get super chilly, making caulk, grout and paint difficult to work with.

One warm day this winter, however, I took advantage of the weather and painted my bathroom counter top….

My first instinct when we bought our house over a year ago was to rip the yellowing, dated vanity out of our guest bathroom and replace it with two pedestal sinks.

But then I realized that I needed to pick my battles where work and money were concerned.

Needless to say, I was ridiculously glad when I discovered this countertop paint at Lowe’s:

Before I made the purchase, however, I read all the product reviews.

What I found was that some people loved it and some people hated it.

I decided it was worth a try and got to work.

First, I had the crusty, calcified faucets removed from the vanity.  (A project in itself for my fix-it guys!)

Next, I sanded the surface with a fine-grit sandpaper before giving the whole surface a thorough scrub-down:

(Blech!  Even when it was clean it was ugly!)

Next, I made sure I had good ventilation.  When it comes to fumes, I like to place a running fan backwards in a window so that it sucks all the chemical fumes out of the room.

You will want to do this, too, because THIS PAINT IS STRONG!! 

Also, wear a mask, gloves and the ugliest clothes you own.

(I always make it a point of looking extra grody whenever I’m painting something):

When it was time to paint, I took my time and was extra careful with the soft roller so as to reduce air bubbles and smears.  Other than that, I did not use any special painting technique.

I will say that the sink was tricky–the paint kept wanting to slide down along the sloped sides.

Some air bubbles were inevitable, but I’m going to sand them down and do a second coat of paint, anyway.

Finally, I let the countertop dry for an entire week without so much as breathing on it.  The manufacturer recommends at least three days, but I didn’t want to take any chances. 

With that said, this is a great project to do right before a vacation.  Not only does it allow the countertop enough time to dry undisturbed, it allows you time away from the fumes.  This area of the house smelled strong of paint fumes for at least 3 days afterwards.

Overall, I am pleased with the results.  A new sink made the vanity look even better!

This vanity is still not a finished product, though.  After a second coat of countertop enamel, I need to repaint the base of the vanity.

The paint job doesn’t look so bad in this photo, but I promise you…them cabinets be naaaaassssstay!

Here’s to [yet another] work in progress!

18 Responses to Repainting An Ugly Bathroom Countertop

  • How has it held up? Would you recommend doing this? Have you had to do anything special for cleaning and not messing up the surface?

    I’m thinking of doing this to our guest bathroom and the counter top is the same stuff. Ours is yellow and sparkly. :/

    • Ew!! The worst kind ever. hahah Yes, the counter has help up very well. As a precaution, I do not clean it with harsh chemicals–just Windex or Clorox wipes. Also, I try not to spill nail polish remover on it for obvious reasons. I would totally give this a try. You have nothing to lose for an $11 project. I would choose a day before a vacation to paint the counter so you can make sure it has undisturbed time to cure and you can get away from the smell.

  • I can’t tell, did the air bubbles in the paint go away after you sanded?

    • Well….if you must know…I never got around to sanding. However, while painting, the bubbles were easily dispersed if I carefully went over the spot again with the roller. Good luck!

  • Hi! What kind of material is your sink/countertop made of? I’m moving in to a place that has this thick plastic-type bathroom counter (so very ugly!), so I’m hoping I can use your technique to prettify it.

    • My counter-top is made of some kind of…stuff. It’s not vinyl, it’s not marble, I’m not sure what it is. However, it is the typical made-to-look-like-marbe-but-isn’t-marble stuff that most bathroom counter tops are made of. :) Hope that helps and good luck!

  • Your house redo is so impressive!

  • It looks great, Leilani! Everything in there is looking so much lighter. Good job!

  • I didn’t even know you could do this! Hope it holds up well for you.

  • I have been wondering about that stuff! It looks great! Keep us updated on how it holds up to use…:) It’s amazing how painting one thing will make everything around it require a paint job too!

  • Your counters look gorgeous! Painting over top is definitely a cheaper alternative to having them removed completely. I agree that “picking your battles” is important when dealing with home renovations. A fresh coat of paint makes your bathroom look brand new.

  • Interesting. I’ve thought about doing that for our disgusting laminate kitchen counters. It looks so good I may have to revisit the idea. And love the faucet – I think we bought the same one!

  • That looks so much better! It will look like a whole new bathroom when you get to the vanity! (I painted all our bathroom vanities and it made a huge difference. Luckily, all the counters and sinks are white and in okay shape.)

  • Oh nicely done! I hope it wears well for you–what a great fix!

  • Well that looks quite good with the counter painted. I like the faucet you picked out as well — looks good with the matte finish of the paint.

    We had a bath in our house that was floor to ceiling tile. In retrospect, I wish we’d tried painting the tile like this than tearing it all out (it was the most lovely green pattern). But at that time in Germany, they didn’t really have any of these fabulous refinishing things! Ah the life of an expat :)

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