Answering: Which Gold Spray Paint Is Best?

The age old question. Am I right? Or am I right, or am I right? Right? Right? Right? This week I did some experimenting with four different gold spray paint brands I had in my possession–so we could educate ourselves and answer this thing once and for all.
Obviously there are more than four different brands of gold spray paint, but these include the three biggest spray painting brands and one bonus brand that carried a gold I had on hand from spray painting the hanger in Greta’s shadowbox.  Update: All of these brands are under $7. Also you should know, I have been geeking out about this project all week.
I started with four faux pears I picked up at the dollar store.

I gave each one a can buddy and the two became inseparable throughout the experiment, or at least until I could mark the pears according to which paint they were bearing. I used Design Master (picked this one up at Micheal’s), Krylon, Rustoleum, and Valspar–that can exploded on me a long time ago.

Here are our pears after each a few thin coats and they fully dried:

Who would you give the first impression rose to? Ha!  I am, personally, a new fan of the Design Master.  It has the least amount of orangey/rosey glow to it.  But, let’s look a little closer at them. To me, these four fall into two categories: brass/gold and bronze/copper. The brassiest gold was definitely the Design Master and Rustoleum as a close second. 

The Krylon and Valspar look entirely too bronze for a “gold” application. Although, I obviously have used them since I have them.  I know better now.  That’s what this is all about.  Also I would note, Krylon went on the worst.  While all of the other finishes seemed smooth and virtually flawless–Krylon was having all sorts of issues.  Could be human error–sure.  But three out of four were near perfect.  Hmm.

Which Gold Spray paint is best?  I am giving Design Master the gold medal, and Rustoleum the silver–although I would definitely still recommend it.  Valspar and Krylon get the bronze–appropriately. Are you surprised or maybe disagree? Do you have a favorite that we didn’t cover here?  Spill.


  • Reply November 12, 2015


    Design Master is a dream to apply, dries super fast, and the color is gorgeous. Thanks so much for this post – it was the reason I went with DM! I bought two clothes hampers made from some kind of metal (iron? steel? I have no idea), removed the cotton liners, spray painted them with DM Gold Medal, inverted them, and use them as bedside tables. Also used it on my IKEA cabinetry handles to tie it together. Not a hint of green to them in my experience, just a beautiful, classy (not brassy) gold. Will be using it again soon!

    • Reply November 13, 2015


      I’ll have to try that one!

  • Reply November 12, 2015


    Ah, my bad. I just checked the can and it’s Design Master Brilliant Gold, not Gold Medal. That explains why I’m not seeing a green undertone!

  • Reply November 24, 2015


    Because of your post, I got the Rustoleum. (Never heard of it, always bought the cheap ones) and I LOVE IT! Thanks a lot Julia! – Jolien, Amsterdam NL

  • Reply January 5, 2016


    Hi thx for the post. I think I have to go with Rustoleum. To me it appears to more gold in color and appearance. Cheers Cora :)

  • Reply January 8, 2016

    Maura G

    Thank you SO much for this. Been struggling with this myself and this is EXACTLY what I needed to see. Appreciate the legwork!!

  • Reply April 14, 2016


    We painted some large leaves and pinecones for centerpieces for my daughter’s wedding and I used krylon because it gave the most beautiful rose gold look! It is great to see a side by side comparison for other projects!

  • Reply April 21, 2016


    This is exactly what I was looking for! Can you please do the same comparison for copper spray paints?!

  • Reply May 5, 2016


    This was SO helpful! Thank you so much!

  • Reply May 15, 2016


    I loved the color of design masters, but am finding that both the chair and ceramic I painted are rubbing off. I normally prime but opted not to this time, so not sure if that was the problem. Greatly disappointed that I will need to redo both.

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