Painted Countertops.

August 10, 2011  —  Written by Julia 

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Yesterday, I mentioned that we bought some countertop paint and I am back to give my first full report.  I painted our mauve countertops last night.  The whole process was quick!  It only took me 2 hours total including a one hour dry time in between.  Before I spit out the results, let’s rewind and start the process from the beginning. 
First I washed all the counters really well with soap and water.  Then, I went over them with a magic eraser.  Then I washed them again.  The instructions just say to wash them down with soap and water–call me an over-achiever, but I just wanted to make sure they were really clean (!) so I could lower the margin of human error for this whole project. 
Then I taped everything off with painter’s tape.   Little fact–I NEVER tape things off when I paint.  I have a pretty steady hand and use a quality brush and I have never had a problem.  But, this paint is an epoxy and totally different than any paint that I have used before.  You can’t just wipe it off with water if you get out of the lines, so I would definitely recommend taping off if you decide to do this yourself.  I think it made the whole thing go faster, too.

You don’t have to prime with this product.  (woot!)  So after things were cleaned and taped off, I was ready to paint.  The product recommends a foam roller and that’s just what I used–a high-density foam roller for “ultra smooth” application.  This paint REALLY smelled.  I opened all of the windows and wore a mask.  It felt really sticky while I was rolling it on, and the paint is the consistency of nail polish.  I was so intrigued because I do a lot of painting and like to try new products….this was definitely new for me.  I immediately got excited when I saw the muave getting covered by a grayish-brown paint.  For some of the backsplash and the space behind the sink, I had to use a brush, which was anticipated.  After I was done with the first coat I waited an hour per instructions and put on the second coat and then IMMEDIATELY removed all of the painter’s tape.  This is pretty crucial.  This paint is strong stuff and it is supposed to harden and leave an enamel-like finish.  You definitely don’t want your tape stuck under it.  After I took off the tape, I did a few touch-ups with my brush on the countertops and even had to break out the wall paint and touch up some spots there–from this project and painting the cabinets.  
Rustoleum’s countertop paint comes in 16 colors.  We went with “Putty.”   And this is how it looks now:
Really shiny, right?  I wasn’t expecting that.  Supposedly it is a satin sheen, but I would definitely call it semi to high gloss sheen.  Either way, we are stoked on it.  We opened a lot of windows last night and this morning the smell is pretty much non-existant.  The counters are dry to the touch and feel very hard and smooth, but the instructions say not to use our countertops for 3 days.
Should we check out some before and afters?  ‘Kay.  Let’s take it back to the very beginning.  When we first moved in, our kitchen looked like this:
Then we painted the cabinets, and it looked like this:
Then I made a roman shade and painted the countertops and now the kitchen looks like this:

While painting the countertops is just an intermediate step to tide us over until we do our full kitchen remodel in the next year or so, you can’t beat $20 for this transformation!  It looks SO much better with our decor.  What can I say, we are just not pink countertop people.  I honestly can’t think of any reason why people are living with laminate countertops they don’t like the color of.  $20 and two hours will get you new-looking countertops.  In fact, this whole kitchen revamp cost less than $110.

The cabinet primer and paint came to $66.  The roman shade cost $22.  And the countertop paint cost $20.  Making the grand total $108!!  A lot cheaper than buying new cabinets and countertops and it definitely makes the space feel more “us” until we DO have the funds for a reno.

I can’t report on the durability of the countertop paint just yet, but I will say at certain angles you can see roller marks.  I took a video this morning so you can get a better idea of the paint color, sheen and some of those brush strokes.  I also caught a little Greta in the vid:

Overall, we are giddy.  We can totally live with these countertops for now.  What do you think?

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What do you think?

  1. Sandy Link says:

    I just did my counter tops and I love them.

  2. Dorel says:

    I used same product and I have a lot of roller marks. A second coat didn’t help. I used the smoothest roller Lowes had. Any recomendations on how to smooth it out?

  3. Jessica says:

    What an awesome turn out! I want to do this to our camper countertops! I was just wondering how you tint the color you want? It says you can tint up to 16 colors on the base can, but it didn’t say how to do it. Do you need to buy another color and mix? Could you explain how this is done?

    Thanks so much, it really turned out great and is a great price!


  4. Tabitha says:

    I love your countertops. I am interested in doing mine and am doing some research. I am wondering how they have been holding up after a few years.


  5. AHOP says:

    Hello – do you have any step-by-step pictures of your painted countertops? Are they on another page?

  6. Magalena says:

    arg! but why cant the colors be happier?

  7. Anonymous says:

    If you paint your counter tops you have to give them a coat of urethane to protect them

  8. Sue Erneta says:

    Wow! They look great!
    I came over from Apartment Therapy and I’m having fun touring your house. How are the counters holding up? Have you had any chipping?

    Sue from Sue at Home

  9. Anonymous says:

    Please how are they holding up?

  10. Jenna says:

    um i had no idea you could do this. We also have pink counter tops and are planning a kitchen reno but not for a year or two at least. I am so doing this!!

  11. Nancy says:

    I painted the counters in my daughter’s bathroom in our old house (previously mauve laminate) and they looked like granite. It was surprisingly easy to do….basically sponge painted with brown, cream, and black craft paint, then added some Martha Stewart glitter and poured an epoxy over the top. The epoxy self-leveled and ran over the edges to coat them too. I just had to tape things off and cover the cupboard fronts to prevent drips on them. The epoxy drips a bit after going over the edge but you just use a sponge brush to catch the drips for a few minutes while it’s hardening. People couldn’t believe it was paint. I’d definitely do it again, but not sure if I’d do it in a kitchen.

  12. Katie Mae says:

    Congrats on your new counter color! I’m newly married and inherited my lovely husband’s house which includes mint green countertops, which match the mint green walls, which also match the mint green blinds all in the kitchen. Lucky me! (not my husband’s doing). So I saw this and immediately went over to amazon and bought some counter paint of my own. When it came in the mail the box looked a little beat up and I know it says it’s tintable to several colors, but how am I supposed to tint it? The box only had the can of paint and NOTHING else?!! Did yours come with some small packets of other paint to tint with? I’m confused and need your help! thanks!

  13. Hey Trent,

    I only used one can and had PLENTY left over. You’ll be just fine with one can. Hope it helps. Would love to see pictures!!


  14. Trent Hughes says:

    Hey there,
    I am about to buy the same colour as you used, can you tell me if you got all the required coats with just one can? or did you need 2?


  15. Here’s the Amazon link for the paint we used for our countertops. We did purchase ours from Home Depot, but in case you can’t find it–


    Hope it helps!

  16. Camillelindquist says:

    Could you send me an email with the exact paint you used? I went to home depot to find countertop paint by rustoleum and it was $149 for the box! Did you get yours on sale or something? Thanks!

  17. Capturinggodsart says:

    How is this holding up?? I would like to try it.

  18. Karen says:

    Wow, great job!!

  19. Olwhiskers says:

    Yes how IS this holding up?? I too have vile “pink granite” look laminate and can’t do the countertops right now. Is it chipping anywhere?

  20. Funny, I think this product comes in a country blue. Why? Oh, Why?!

  21. Yay! Definitely don’t wait. This was such a quick and easy and CHEAP project.

  22. michelle says:

    i am soooo painting my ugly “country blue” counters!!! i hate them!

  23. I LOVE IT! We are awaiting our great kitchen make over in spring of ’12….but seeing this and how inexpensive lets me know I do not have to live with 70’s orangey-red anymore. God Bless you!

  24. Patty says:

    GORGEOUS! They look brand new and magnificent.
    And… do I see that you are at 200 followers? Way to go Jules a Bug

  25. Tunjagray says:

    The Kitchen lokks Great!! You make it seem so easy. I am gonna try this with my bathroom. Wish me luck!!

  26. Your kitchen looks entirely different! It’s amazing what paint can do. I love it!

  27. Kristinecmetcalf says:

    wow!! i am SO impressed. Seriously amazing.
    i love seeing your projects. i love how you just get to work and figure stuff out. really cool.

  28. Stephanie Narup says:

    Wow! That turned out SO GREAT! I LOVE it.

  29. You painted countertops! I didn’t even know that was possible! I also didn’t know Greta can answer a question with “Yeah!” Love her, love you

  30. The box says, “It adheres to laminate as well as vinyl, wood and metal. Not for use on floors, granite, marble, tile, and concrete.” So it sounds like if you have wood butcher block counters, it would work for you.

  31. Dre says:

    Looks so much better! Can you use the counter paint on old butcher block counters??

  32. Meagan says:

    Um, holy amazing!!!!

    Pretty sure NO ONE will notice those roller marks. I saw it just at the perfect angle of light AND you pointing it out. Otherwise, totally clueless.

    This was an awesome SUPER cheap project that has completely transformed your kitchen. And I’m sure the super high gloss will tone down as you cook, wipe, and clean the tops lots of times.

  33. Sixpakc says:

    How well has the paint held up since you did this almost 5 months ago? I’ve already purchased it and plan to use it to cover the ugly bathroom laminate countertop. Won’t be a large area with high usage (it’s a guest bathroom that doesn’t get used much), so it just needs to look good enough. Some of the Amazon reviews I read are scaring me, I’m nervous now but the bathroom reno budget doesn’t allow for a new countertop. Thanks for your help!

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