Get a Chippy Paint Finish with Milk Paint – Every time!

Old, worn, farmhouse, rustic and chippy. If you want to create these styles on furniture, you’re in the right place! I have a huge secret up my sleeve when it comes to getting a chippy paint finish with milk paint every time!

Learn more painting techniques for furniture here.

The secret to getting a chippy milk paint finish every time and brushing black milk paint onto furniture

If you’ve used or read much about milk paint (the powdered kind, not General Finishes Milk Paint) then you know that it has a mind of its own.

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Sometimes it will chip like crazy, other times it won’t chip at all. Even though you have done everything exactly the same!

Some furniture finishes are more prone to chipping, while others will suck up that milk paint and leave behind no chipping.

**You certainly don’t want to put milk paint on a factory finish like IKEA furniture though. All of the milk paint will chip away and you’ll be left with a mess.

Milk paint needs a wood finish that it can soak into a little bit, but not too much if you want to make a chippy paint finish!

Supplies Used to Get a Chippy Paint Finish with Milk Paint – Every time!

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Chippy Paint Finish with Milk Paint

Milk paint is known for it’s chippy old looking paint finish. It’s my personal favorite! But you never know if it will go crazy and chip all over, or if it won’t chip at all!

But I’m happy to say, that after testing it, I have cracked the code on how to always get the perfect chippy finish! The secret is in this product! BOSS by Dixie Belle Paint.

Dixie Belle Primer BOSS on Furniture

BOSS is a primer that prevents bleedthrough and is also really good to stop musty smells. BOSS actually stands for Blocks Odors, Stains, Stops bleedthrough.

It’s also water based so its a really nice (no stinky) primer to prevent bleedthrough when you are indoors!

Chippy Milk Paint Technique – First Time

I accidentally came across a product that you can use before milk paint, which will help the milk paint chip off in the most perfect way. It first happened on this chippy mustard yellow dresser.

closeup of chippy mustard yellow milk painted dresser
See this mustard yellow chippy farmhouse dresser makeover here.

I honestly was prepping the dresser for chalk paint, making sure there wouldn’t be any bleedthrough in my paint finish.

So I scuff sanded the whole dresser, and painted a coat or two of Dixie Belle BOSS to help prevent bleedthrough.

Then I let the dresser sit for a few weeks until I finally decided that I wanted to go in a different direction with milk paint.

I was still pretty new to using milk paint, and so I hoped that the milk paint would react well to how I prepped it. Thankfully it reacted perfectly to it!

(I sprayed on two coats of Shackteau Interiors Milk Paint in Dusty Yellow and used a hair drier to help the paint dry quicker.)

Chippy Milk Paint Technique – Second Test

A few months later another refinisher (the amazing Sarah at Sitting Pretty Home Decor) asked me if I knew of any product that would help prevent bleedthrough but would also help milk paint to chip.

Sarah needed to paint a piece white, and she needed it to chip. She thought about using shellac to block bleedthrough, but she knew that the shellac would help the milk paint crackle.

And she didn’t want the milk paint to crackle. She wanted it to chip!

How to Make Milk Paint Crackle

Did you notice that tiny little tip I just shared about how to make milk paint crackle?

If you’re looking to create crackle painted furniture, shellac is your best friend! Soon after the shellac is dry, paint on your milk paint to help it crackle!

I did that with this teal floral dresser and ended up with small crackling all over the dresser! (Which was perfect because I didn’t love the color of the original finish, so I didn’t want the paint to chip.)

Check out more crackle painted furniture ideas here.

crackle painted furniture with milk paint and shellac
Notice the crackled paint at the top and on the sides. The floral transfer hides it in this photo, but it was definitely crackled! Check out this floral dresser makeover here!

Okay, back to chippy paint! I told my refinisher friend about BOSS, and she tried it. This is how chippy her piece turned out!

Chippy Milk Paint Technique – Third Test

Fast forward a few months later, and I was in the same predicament as Sarah was. I had a piece that I was worried would bleed through. But I really wanted a chippy paint finish.

So, I decided that it was time to test out my theory and see if it worked. I sprayed a coat of BOSS on, and a day or so later, I painted it with a custom color of Shackteau Interiors Milk Paint.

Since I really wanted a chippy finish, (and it was pretty chilly in my garage that day) I turned a space heater on near the drying paint, and I used a hairdryer on the hottest setting to help the paint dry fast.

Before I knew it, I started to see paint chipping! Then I painted a second coat, and even more paint chipped off!! Success!!! This is that buffet, in all of it’s chippy goodness!

chippy green milk painted buffet

That makes 3 out of 3 times that this product has created a chippy painted finish with Shackteau Interiors Milk Paint! 3 out of 3!!!

Chippy Milk Paint Technique – Latest Attempt

Now, my latest attempt. It’s time to actually show you how to do it.

How to do a chippy painted finish on furniture, even when you have scuff-sanded or if you just think that the milk paint won’t chip on that piece.

This time I brushed one coat of BOSS on and let it dry. Then I brushed on 2 coats of Shackteau Interiors Milk Paint in Black Beach.

closeup of furniture after brushing BOSS and milk paint
drying milk painted dresser with hair dryer

At first, it wasn’t really chipping off like I expected it would. Even when I used a hairdryer to help dry the paint faster in some areas.

After 2 coats of paint, I distressed the milk paint, sealed it with water-based poly.

distressing milk painted dresser
distressed milk painted dresser
sealing milk paint by spraying poly

When it was dry (and brought into better light) I could see the perfect amount of chipping!! It worked!!

closeup of chippy black milk painted dresser

The Secret to Getting a Chippy Finish Every Time!

  1. Clean the furniture with a degreaser / cleaner to remove residue, oils, waxes and grime. ( I like to use Krud Kutter!)
  2. Brush or spray 1-2 coats of Dixie Belle BOSS in Clear. Let it dry.
  3. Brush or spray 2 coats of Shackteau Interiors Milk Paint.
  4. Use a hair dryer or heater to make the paint dry faster.
  5. After the second coat of paint, distress with 220 grit sandpaper.
  6. Clean off the dust with a vacuum and a tack cloth (the tack cloth can get even more chipping paint off).
  7. Seal with this water-based poly for an even more chippy finish!

4 out of 4 times Dixie Belle BOSS in Clear has made Shackteau Interiors Milk Paint chip! That’s enough for me to say that you’re going to have great results with it too!!

*Note: I have not used the Dixie Belle BOSS with any other brand of milk paint, so I don’t know how it would react. I only know how it has reacted with Shackteau Interiors Milk Paint.

full shot of chippy black milk painted dresser

Get all the milk paint tips and tricks! Including how to mix milk paint, how to paint with milk paint, how to distress milk paint, how to seal milk paint, and milk paint furniture makeovers!

Head on over to our milk painted furniture ideas for your next project. Happy painting your chippy furniture!!!

Get A Chippy Paint Finish With Milk Paint – Every Time!

chippy milk paint finish on dresser

Old, worn, farmhouse, rustic and chippy. If you want to create these styles on furniture, here's a huge secret when it comes to getting a chippy paint finish with milk paint every time!

Tools

Instructions

  1. Clean the furniture with a degreaser / cleaner to remove residue, oils, waxes and grime.
  2. Brush or spray 1-2 coats of Dixie Belle BOSS in Clear. Let it dry.
  3. Brush or spray 2 coats of Shackteau Interiors Milk Paint.
  4. Use a hair dryer or heater to make the paint dry faster.
  5. After the second coat of paint, distress with 220 grit sandpaper.
  6. Clean off the dust with a vacuum and a tack cloth (the tack cloth can get even more chipping paint off).
  7. Seal with this water-based poly for an even more chippy finish!

Recommended Products

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The secret to getting a chippy milk paint finish every time and closeup of chippy milk painted furniture

6 Comments

  1. jasa Backlink says:

    Ꭲhere’s certainly a great deal to learn aƄօut getting a chippy finish. Thank you!

  2. It’s truly a nice and useful piece. Thanks for sharing.

  3. What can be done to get “chippy” if you’ve already coated with milk paint?

    1. You can try painting more coats of milk paint and heating up areas to get it to chip. Other than that I’m not sure.

  4. cheryl atkinson says:

    Hi Natalie! I found it. I thought i had read something about using a product from DB first before milk paint but i thought it was the Gator Hide and i tried that once. It didn’t work. Now i know its the Boss. That actually answers two questions i had about painting with Milk Paint. I wondered if you had to treat for bleed through with milk paint. You have made my life so much easier now. thank you! Pinned for later.

    1. So glad we were able to answer your question!! Happy painting!

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