Are you ready to get down with some DIY? Painting your furniture with the best paint is one of the best home projects you can get into.
Maybe you’re just looking to slap a fresh coat on a worn-out wooden table. Maybe you want to go crazy with a complete color change. Either way, you’ll need to know a thing or two about paint.
Where do you start?
Luckily, you don’t have to be Bob Vila (or Bob Ross) to undertake a project like this. That’s because we’re here to do the heavy lifting for you. In this guide, we’ll cover all the basics you need to get started, including what to look for in a paint and the top ten paints on the market today.
So strap in, and get ready for a wild ride of education.
Best Paint for Your Furniture: How We Choose Our Ratings
We know it can be difficult to get a handle on the paint for your furniture. The research is long, tedious, and much of the information out there is conflicting.
Never fear. Our ratings are chosen with care. Here’s what we consider:
Best Paint for Your Furniture: Top 10 Winners
Ready to dive in? Check out the top 10 furniture paint heroes on the market.
This product is exactly what it sounds like. Beyond Paint does go beyond paint. It does the job of three products. It acts as a bonder, a primer, and a finisher, all in one neat little quart or gallon-sized can.
It boasts an easy DIY experience. No stripping, no sanding, and no extra products required for prepping or finishing. You can pretty much open this can up, pour it out, and start attacking your table with vigor. Sound too good to be true?
According to customer reviews, this product is miraculous. Buyers loved the ease of use and zero prep time required. They also inform us that generally, you’ll need to use two or three coats to get the desired effect.
At around $50 per quart, it may seem a bit pricier than other paints. However, keep in mind that you’ll be saving yourself a lot of time, as well as some extra dough on the primer and finisher.
Star Rating: We give this product 5 stars for a good price and ease of use.
Don’t let the name fool you. It’s not just a finisher. General Finishes water-based paint has been hailed by critics as one of the best products around.
This paint is easy to use and quite durable. Its UV-resistant qualities make it suitable for both indoor and outdoor use. It goes on with a light sheen in whatever color you prefer, which never requires a topcoat unless you want a more lustrous finish.
This paint is incredibly versatile. You can apply it sleekly, distress it, and create a number of different styles with it. It’s also great just on its own, applied with a roller for those looking for a lower-tech DIY project.
One of the best things about this paint is the price. At just $29 a quart, General Finishes delivers paint that is accessible to everyone.
Star Rating: We give this product 5 stars for affordability and versatility.
Amy Howard paint could very well be the best paint for you. This paint is multi-use, and it’s good for both indoor and outdoor furniture. It goes on easy and is self-sealing, so you don’t have to worry about finishing it.
In fact, this paint lives up to its claim of being “one-step.” Customers reported good dry time and a variety of colors to choose from, with very little or no maintenance over time.
This paint is methanol and VOC-free, meaning it doesn’t have any toxic materials in it. It is a bit pricey at $15 for 8 oz, or $35 for a quart of the stuff. However, you get what you pay for. The end result is a low-maintenance product with a professional look.
Star Rating: We give this product 5 stars for ease of use and a sleek look.
The Black Dog Salvage brand is a refreshingly inexpensive and easy paint to use. This water-based paint has a low VOC count and a perfect matte finish. Mix it, match it, combine it with other paints — you can do anything you want. You will probably need to both prime and finish when using this paint, though some customers reported the paint has a good finish on its own.
The only downside of Black Dog Savage is that you only get 15 colors to choose from. However, you’ll be able to mix it up if you feel so inclined. Customers reported excellent coverage. At the most, you’ll need to use two coats.
500 milliliters (a bit over half a quart, or almost 17 oz) costs $16. That’s almost half the price of the Amy Howard brand.
Star Rating: We give this product 5 stars for affordability and good coverage.
This Americana chalky finish paint is perfect for wood, metal, glass, and most other surfaces you want to paint. You won’t need to prime or sand before using this paint. You can finish it or not, depending on the look you’re trying to go for.
Available in 29 colors, this paint is non-toxic, safe, and a breeze to use. The only downside is that it isn’t sold in large quantities, so if you want to do big-scale projects, it will cost you a bit more money. However, you’ll only pay about $9 for 8 oz of the stuff, so it’s less expensive than some abovementioned brands.
Star Rating: We give this product 5 stars for versatility and good looks.
Annie Sloan has long been known as the queen of color, so it makes sense that her paint would make this list. The paint is non-toxic and of good quality, with great coverage. The preparation requires little work. The brand says sanding and priming isn’t necessary, though you’ll probably want to decide that for yourself based on the current state of the painted piece.
This paint dries quite fast into a smooth matte. After which, you’ll need to seal it with a finish. With over 20 colors to choose from, the possibilities to mix and match are nearly endless. Previous buyers mostly loved this paint, though some complained about the colors coming out differently than they imagined.
Annie Sloan paint is on the pricey side at $40 per quart, but you get what you pay for.
Star Rating: We give this product 4.5 stars for awesome coverage and ease of use.
This FolkArt chalk furniture paint is a much beloved by reviewers across the board. This funkadelic matte acrylic paint is perfect for accent pieces and works on most surfaces, including canvas, terracotta, and plaster. You can use it for anything, but you’ll get a particularly satisfying look with your furniture. No sanding or priming required with this nifty little bottle.
Customers (including some professional painters) absolutely adore this easy-to-use and very versatile paint. However, some reported that the colors came out a bit “off.” The price is quite reasonable at just $10 for 8 oz, putting it on par with the price of the Americana paint.
Star Rating: We give this product 4.5 stars for affordability and finish.
Rust Oleum paint is perfect for outdoor furniture that’s been exposed to the elements, or pieces that you may want to move outside in the future. The great thing about Rust Oleum paints and finishes is that they’re designed to be used right over rusted metal, and they’re specially formulated to stop additional rust from forming.
These paints are specifically for metal furniture, though users reported being able to paint over wood as well with good results from proper preparation.
You’ll pay $16 for one quart of this paint, which isn’t a bad deal at all.
Star Rating: We give this product 4.5 stars for its rust-fighting abilities and good price.
This Renaissance Paint is eco-friendly, non-toxic, and VOC-free. Its primary purpose is for cabinets and other wooden furniture. Customers loved the easy application and reported that the finished product went beyond expectations.
However, a small number of buyers claimed that the paint was difficult to mix properly. At $30 a quart, the Renaissance brand is neither cheap nor extremely expensive.
Star Rating: We give this product 4 stars for being eco-friendly and easy to use.
Chalk Mountain is the best paint when it comes to coverage. Many customers reported having to use just one coat, and the paint seems to be silky and smooth going on. No problems with clumping and sticking here.
The only problem some buyers had was that some of the colors showed differently than advertised. It costs nearly $27 for 1 quart, so the price is pretty mid-level.
Star rating: We give this product 4 stars for ease of use and great coverage.
Best Paint for Your Furniture: Buyer’s Guide
Now that you know some of the top brands on the market, you should learn exactly what to look for in your furniture paint.
There are two types of paint you might read about when researching what’s right for you:
- Latex-based paint: Latex-based paint generally goes on with little preparation and no primer, though that really depends on your furniture. It’s water-based, which means no pesky fumes and chemical odor. Latex paints are sometimes cut with acrylics, so you may see “acrylic” on the label.
- Oil-based paint: Oil-based paint is generally thicker, and you may not need a finish when the job is complete. It’s generally better to use oil-based paint outside, as the fumes can get pretty intense. However, it’s extremely durable and a great choice for painting high-traffic pieces of furniture.
The chalk paints mentioned in the list are latex-based paints, and they’re great for when you want a particular look, like a distressed style. If you want to take DIY a step further, check out how to make it yourself.
Oil-based paints are much less popular because they can be tricky to work with and take a long time to dry. They also require chemical solvents to clean, and the process is generally messier than with latex-based paint.
When choosing your paint, take into account what kind of surface you’re painting. Different kinds of paint are better for different pieces of furniture.
For example, Rust Oleum is better for metal furniture, while Chalk Mountain is better for wood. When painting canvas, you’ll want to utilize a brand such as FolkArt, which is compatible with that type of material.
No matter which material you’ll be painting, make sure that your project goes smoothly by utilizing the proper safety techniques. Always wear a mask and use a fan to protect yourself from fumes if painting inside. If you are particularly sensitive to fumes, choose a paint that’s VOC-free.
That way, you’ll have an enjoyable experience without risk of any damage.
Choosing the Best Paint for Your Furniture Makes DIY a Dream
Picking the paint for your furniture ensures you’ll have the picture-perfect piece you’ve been dreaming about.
Now that you’ve read this guide, you’re ready for the next step. So, what are you waiting for? Choose your paint and make the transformation happen.