How to Chalk Paint Laminate Furniture

Want to transform your laminate furniture into a statement piece? With the help of chalk paint, you can give that plain-looking furniture a fresh color that will make your friends jealous. Getting started with chalk paint is simple; all you need are the right supplies and a few helpful tips. In this blog post, we’ll provide an easy step-by-step guide for how to chalk paint laminate furniture like an expert.

From prepping and priming to sealing the finished product, we’ll show you how to achieve beautiful results that look like they were done by a professional. So get ready to break out the brush and let’s get painting!

top view of a laminate desk and brushing chalk paint on a laminate furniture with text

Using chalk paint is a great solution for transforming basic laminate into an eye-catching piece that lasts!

Click here to subscribe

You’ve obviously heard about chalk paint, but there are a lot of misconceptions about it.

So before we dive into how to chalk paint laminate furniture, let’s chat about some things that I think you should know about chalk paint.

Things You Should Know About Chalk Paint

  1. Yes, chalk paint has great adhesion. But, when you use it on top of laminate furniture, it will most likely need a little bit of help to get it to adhere well. (In the form of sanding and/or priming beforehand)
  2. Chalk paint is a very porous paint, so if you don’t topcoat it, the paint will absorb any liquids that are spilled on it. This can cause the paint to start peeling off over time. And you won’t be able to just wipe things off if it gets dirty. It also easily gets marked up, even with the light touch of your hand. The topcoat adds protection to the paint so you don’t have to worry about any of these things.
  3. Chalk paint is very forgiving. And you can brush, roll or spray it on.
  4. It dries very quickly (within an hour or so).
  5. It sands into a fine powder. This is what makes it perfect for a distressed look. It also makes it easier to sand out any brush or roller marks if you don’t like those.

Read through this post to learn more about the truth of using chalk paint for furniture.

So now that you know more about chalk paint, let’s get started! But first, here are the supplies you’ll need.

Supplies Used to Chalk Paint Laminate Furniture

As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I also may earn from other qualifying purchases with other companies or get free product to review and use. All opinions are my own.

Now let’s dive into the steps for chalk painting laminate furniture and get you on your way to a beautiful new piece of furniture.

How to Chalk Paint Laminate Furniture

If you’re anything like me, you want to start painting. But if you want professional results, you need to do a few things before grabbing for the chalk paint.

Yeah, chalk paint companies boast that you don’t need to sand or prime, which honestly if you want your paint to stick well, isn’t true.

But when you paint laminate furniture, sanding and priming are even more important because of how slick and shiny the laminate is.

If you’re going to spend the time and money to update your furniture, take an extra few hours and do it right the first time.

That way you can enjoy your chalk painted furniture for years to come if you want to!

Preparing Your Laminate Furniture

Before you can start painting, it’s important to properly clean and prepare furniture for paint. This will help your paint last longer. Start by removing all of the hardware on your furniture.

Part of prepping for paint includes cleaning furniture with a degreasing cleaner, and sanding furniture lightly with 220 grit sandpaper until the laminate has lost its shine, and feels less slick.

Check out my guide on how to sand wood by hand to learn more.

scuff sanding laminate surface with a 220 grit sandpaper

This will help the paint and primer stick to the slick laminate.

Then, clean off the dust with a vacuum hose and brush attachment and wipe off anything that remains before moving on to the next step.

Using a tack cloth will remove the dust better than anything else!

How to Paint Laminate Without Sanding

If you don’t want to scuff sand, then you can use a primer that is designed to adhere directly to slick surfaces. Check out this post to choose your bonding primer for laminate furniture.

But be aware that if you don’t scuff sand, your paint job may not last as long.

You can always test the primer or paint out on a small section of your furniture before you go all in, just to make sure that it will stick.

After 24 hours, scratch at it with your fingernail. If it doesn’t scratch off, you should be good! Once it cures (after about 30 days) it will be even more durable!

Priming Your Laminate Furniture

Priming is an essential step in the painting process, especially when painting laminate!

spraying clear shellac onto laminate furniture

It helps make sure that your paint will stick to the laminate. Without a good bonding primer, most paint will easily scratch off of laminate.

Check out this post on how to paint laminate furniture without sanding vs sanding to see how important a good primer is.

Then paint on at least one coat of primer. Two coats are always better than one! You can use a paint brush or roller here.

Check out these posts on the best paint brushes for painting furniture and the best rollers for painting furniture to pick what’s right for you.

Let the primer dry according to the instructions on the primer’s container.

Applying Chalk Paint to Your Laminate Furniture

Once your surface is prepped, it’s time for the fun part – painting! Paint on at least two coats of chalk paint, applied evenly over the entire piece of furniture.

brushing pink chalk paint onto laminate furniture

I’ve put together this list of the top chalk paint brands to help you choose what chalk paint to use.

Allow an hour or two for the chalk paint to dry completely, especially if you live in a cold or humid climate. You can use a paint brush or roller for the chalk paint too.

Check out the best chalk paint brushes here. If you want a brush-free finish, use a paint sprayer or check out this post on how to paint furniture without brush marks.

Here are the best paint sprayers for painting furniture. If you want to use a paint sprayer, this post has everything you need to know about painting furniture with a sprayer.

Lighter colors and yellows and reds will most likely need more coats to get full coverage. White paint usually needs 4-5 coats.

Sealing Your Chalk Painted Laminate Furniture

Once your paint has dried completely, it’s important to seal the chalk paint to help protect your beautiful new paint from wear and tear over time.

You can use wax, but it’s not as durable as polyurethane. Learn about wax vs polyurethane to know the right one for your project. Learn more about the pros and cons of wax for chalk paint here.

You can choose any sheen for your topcoat, matte, satin, or gloss. Learn about topcoats for painting furniture, and pick the best one for your project.

Then apply the topcoat to your dry chalk paint.

mixing varathane waterbased polyurethane

If you want the most professional looking finish and the most durable finish, choose Varathane waterbased polyurethane. Or use the spray can version of Minwax polycrylic for your topcoat.

Learn about the difference between polycrylic vs polyurethane here. And here’s how to apply polycrylic to painted furniture.

My favorite way to topcoat chalk paint is by spraying polyurethane on. Allow 24 hours of drying time before you lightly use your new piece of furniture!

Other Paints that are Great for Painting Laminate Furniture

If using chalk paint on laminate furniture sounds like a lot of work, between sanding, priming AND top coating… I have some easier options for you.

Check out this post on the best paint for laminate furniture for a list of the best types of paint to use on laminate furniture.

Chalk painting laminate furniture is a great way to transform basic pieces into something special.

With the right supplies and steps, you can achieve beautiful results that look like they were done by an expert!

So don’t wait any longer – gather up your supplies and start transforming those boring old laminate pieces today!

How to Chalk Paint Laminate Furniture

brushing some pink chalk paint onto the furniture

Using chalk paint is a great solution for updating basic laminate into an eye-catching piece of furniture that lasts! Here's an easy step-by-step guide for how to chalk paint laminate furniture like an expert.


    1. Clean and prepare furniture for paint by removing hardware, cleaning with a degreasing cleaner, lightly sanding until laminate has lost its shine, vacuuming the dust off the surface, and wiping off anything that remains.
    2. Prime the surface using a bonding primer to ensure that your paint will stick to the laminate.
    3. Paint on at least two coats of chalk paint evenly over the entire piece of furniture; lighter colors may need more coats for full coverage.
    4. Seal chalk paint with wax or polyurethane topcoat in the desired sheen (matte/satin/gloss).
    5. Allow 24 hours before using your newly painted furniture.

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

More Painting Laminate Furniture Resources

Click here to subscribe

Follow us on YouTube to get more tips for painting furniture.

Or share your project with us on our Facebook Group and be part of our community. See you there!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *