What Kind of Paint Should You Use on Bathroom Cabinets?

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Home renovations are exciting, no matter the section. Bathrooms are one of the easiest places to remodel, and the smallest re-work like repainting cabinets can go a long way.

Before embarking on the exciting paint-shopping venture, you should know what kind of paint to use on your bathroom cabinets.

The recommended kind of paint for bathroom cabinets is semi-gloss paint. Bathrooms are frequently used rooms in homes and are subject to humidity, moisture, and regular cleaning. Semi-gloss paint is ideal because it is water and mildew-resistant, easy to clean, and durable.

Most semi-gloss paint types are oil-based or acrylic, although acrylic paint lacks in silkiness. Similarly, you can use latex paint.

Oil-based paint tends to be thick and might run during application, so thin the paint to avoid running and quicken the drying process for a smooth finish.

How do You Paint Bathroom Cabinets?


You can paint your bathroom cabinets like a pro right in the comfort of your home. The process may take a couple of hours or even days, but the effect will last for many years.

Buying the Paint

You have inspected your bathroom and know the type and material of your cabinets. Now you should buy the kind of paint that is most compatible with your surface, be it wooden, plastic, or metal.

Along with the paint, you will purchase primers and sandpaper to prepare your cabinet surfaces before painting.


To ensure you maintain a clean environment as you paint your bathroom cabinet, place a cloth, newspaper, or plastic sheet around your workstation. To avoid spillage on areas where you do not want to include paint, such as countertops, use painter’s tape to protect the surface.

Remove everything inside the cabinet and label different drawers and shelves for easy replacement once you finish painting.

If your cabinet is not too complex, you can unscrew the hinges on your doors and remove them for an easy painting process. It is difficult you can keep them on but use painter’s tape to protect surfaces.

Cleaning and Sanding

After preparing the cabinets, clean them with cloth and detergent to remove dirt and oil/grease. Wipe the cabinet down with clean water and pat dry. If you have time, you can air dry it and leave no traces of water.

Cleaning applies to the exterior and interior of the cabinet if you are going to paint both sides. If the surface has dents or irregularities, use a knife and gently scrape around the dents to even it out. Use sandpaper for sanding the surface afterward.

Sanding will help the paint and primer adhere to the surface. Sanding also smoothens the surface for a neat finish after painting.

After sanding, wipe all the surfaces to remove dust and residue.


A primer is essential in helping paint adhere to surfaces and enhancing the paint’s color. Using a roller or a brush, apply long strokes of primer on the surface and ensure the strokes are not visible. Allow the primer to dry.

The type of cabinet surface and paint you use will determine the primer you apply. For example, latex paint adheres well to oil-based primer.


Considering you have chosen the right kind of paint for your bathroom, factoring in essential details such as moisture and humidity, you can start painting.

You will use a synthetic paintbrush and a natural paintbrush for oil-based paint and apply one thin coat after the other. Several thin coats are better than two thick coats. Contrary to the belief that thick coats will result in long-lasting wear, the application of thin coats will do the trick.

With thin coats, the finishing will be smooth, and the surface will be hard-wearing. Once the last paint coat is completely dry, you can rearrange your bathroom cabinet.

How do You Choose Paint Color for Your Bathroom Cabinet?

The color is one of the hardest things to figure out besides the type of paint for your bathroom cabinet. If poorly chosen, the color coordination between your bathroom surface will spoil the aesthetics and the whole point of facelifting your bathroom cabinets.

Following a few tips will lessen your burden of thinking about the best color for your cabinets.

The Wall Color

Wall color is the first factor to observe before choosing your cabinet paint colors. You can decide to match your cabinet colors with the existing wall color. If you are not pleased with the wall colors, you can mix and match the cabinet to create a new aura with the contrast of shades.

Bathroom size

There is a rule when it comes to color and room sizes. Bright colors make a room look bigger and darker shades make the room look smaller. Look at the lighting and size of cabinets in your bathroom.

If the cabinets are squeezed within the room, a dark shade will give in an even more closed-up look. Consider light colors to open up your bathroom space or dark colors to close it up.


Similar to the wall colors, the floor plays a role while determining your bathroom cabinet paint colors. You can match the floor color with your cabinets or contrast the two. Again, you will look at the overall floor color shades; dark to make the room small, bright to make the room big.


Most countertops consist of marble, concrete, or granite. They are often multi-color in design or have a dominant color.

If the countertops have a multi-color design, you can match your bathroom cabinet color with the least dominant color or the more dominant color. Either way, this will create harmony between the cabinets and the countertops.

If they are all of one dominant color, you can contrast these colors or match them by applying the dark and light shade rule.

Lighter Factors to Consider


A small guiding factor to consider is the complexity of your planned approach. If you want a quick and easy fix, go for monotone colors such as white, cream, grey or, ivory that will blend in with the rest of the bathroom, despite its other colors.

General Home Style

If you have a modern home and want to go bold, you can contrast existing colors with the cabinet colors. You can also use vivid colors for a dramatic look; bright shades of green or yellow. They are stimulating colors that will liven up your bathroom.

Future of Your Home

If you plan on staying in your current house for a long time, then you can go big with the cabinet paint. You will be redoing your bathroom according to your personal style, so there will be no chances of undoing your hard work.

If you plan to move a short while after painting your cabinets, it would be best to consider neutral shades like white, ivory, beige, or grey. They are not dramatic and incoming homeowners may not mind the cabinet colors.

Make Your Trend

You do not have to follow style and trend. If you see a color that you like and want to use for your cabinets, go ahead and bend the rules! After all, it is your style that matters.

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