This home ownership stuff is getting to be more fun than I thought it would be. 😉 When we first bought our home, we did what most first time home owners do. We overwhelmed ourselves with ideas, projects and plans for our home. Then reality set in (and we got a plan together). And by reality, I mean money and time constraints began to yell very loudly at us. Such is life. So, we abandoned our plans to replace our kitchen back-splash. Then I had this idea. Why not paint the existing back-splash? Surely this is a thing. I did what every millennial does when they have a problem…I Googled it. Sure enough, this is a thing people have been doing for years. I read up on painting tile and decided I didn’t have much to lose.
So here are my tips, tricks, materials and recommended reading about painting kitchen tile back-splash. Also, enjoy a few before and after photos. I’m SO happy I decided to take on this project. The difference in our kitchen is amazing!!
Materials: sponge, bleach, rubbing alcohol, Purdy 2” brush (favorite brush!), a few extra brushes (china bristle are the best), sponge brush (for grout), Extreme Bond Primer, All Surface Enamel Latex Paint, blue painter’s tape, urethane.
- Clean your tile and surface area really well. Scrub with a sponge, bleach, tile cleaner and be really tedious about this step. I used bleach and my favorite Mrs. Myers cleaning spray. I also de-greased the area with rubbing alcohol. Then you have to let the tile dry for two days before starting to paint. From what I read, this part is one of the most important. Also, before painting, be sure to remove any outlet covers or light switch plates and pull out any appliances that are in the way.
- Some people skip this step if they are really good at cutting in, but I am not. So, I always use blue painters tape and I’m super tedious about applying it exactly where I want my paint lines. This does take some extra time, but I get more peace of mind when I do this.
- Using a great brush (like a Purdy brush), prime the tile. I primed it twice and let it dry for an hour in between priming.
- Once again, using a great brush, I started painting after letting the primer sit overnight. I did one coat of my white paint using my Purdy brush and then waited 5 hours before doing the next coat. They recommend waiting at least 4 hours to do another coat. I also made sure to open windows and turn on a fan to help keep drying conditions as perfect as I could get them. (To keep paint brushes wet between coats, wrap them in cling wrap and put them in the fridge.)
- Let everything dry for about a week before putting outlet covers and plates back on the wall or before putting anything directly on the tile. You just want to make sure nothing sticks to the tile or messes with your hard work.
Tips/Notes: A few things I read said to use oil based paint. But, I hate oil based paint because I hate the clean up part and the smell. So, I went with the other option of using latex based paint and that seemed to work really well. If you’re wondering about the durability of painting tile, check out the links I posted below where one lady shows her painted tile almost two years later and it still looks amazing. My co-worker painted hers and it still looks great after a few years. Also, they don’t recommend tile painting in areas that get direct water hits like shower stalls. A few blog posts said to do a urethane coat after you paint, but after talking with a few people and a paint store, I decided this wasn’t a necessary step. Last, my tile was pretty messy and had some major issues with the grout. I should have tried to fix these before painting.
Here were some helpful articles and blog posts about painting back-splash:
Happy DIY-ing, friends!