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Steps for Masterfully-Painted Bathroom Cabinets

Working Time: 4 hours

Total Time:  approx. 3 days

Estimated Cost: $50 – $80

Painting bathroom cabinets is an easy task if you have the right steps to follow. This task can take a few days and if you take your time to do it correctly, it will look better than you could have imagined.

Painting Kitchen Cabinets
Painting Kitchen Cabinets

When it comes to the materials of your cabinets, wood cabinets are the easiest to paint. With cabinets made out of materials such as thermofoil, the results may not be as good as with wood.



When choosing paint for your cabinets, you have two options: oil-based or water-based paint.



Oil-based paint works well in high-traffic areas, but it takes longer to dry. On the other hand, water-based paint dries quickly, and if you want a more durable and high-quality one, look for a 100% acrylic enamel formula.

Start by preparing your area

→ First, you need to remove all items from the cabinets and drawers. Find some old clothes or rags and put them around your work area so you can keep paint from going on your floor. Also, don’t forget to tape all surfaces you want to protect.

Removing doors and hardware

→ After you’ve prepared your work area, the next step is to remove the doors and hardware. You can use a drill or screwdriver to remove the doors and hinges.

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Cleaning the cabinets

→ The obvious step is to clean the cabinets. Clean the outside surfaces as well as the doors and drawer fronts. Use tri-sodium phosphate to remove all grease and grime. Remember to wear rubber gloves when using TSP.

Sanding the cabinets

→ After cleaning your cabinets, use 220-grit sandpaper to sand the outside of the cabinets as well as the doors and drawer fronts. Sanding will help the paint adhere better to the surface. Wipe down the surfaces with a damp cloth to remove dust.

Applying primer and paint

→ When the preparation process is done, apply an even coat of paint primer to the exposed surfaces using a roller, brush, or sprayer. A sprayer works best for this job. But, if you decide to use a brush, paint with long and even motions so the brushstrokes are not visible. Let the primer dry. The next step is to apply the first coat of paint to cabinet surfaces. Don’t forget to paint both sides of the doors; it’s usually easiest to allow the fronts to dry completely before painting the backs. When applying the second coat of paint, let it to dry for a minimum of 24 hours.


Tip: If you are using water-based paint, use a synthetic paintbrush, whereas if you’ve opted for oil-based paints, you’ll need a natural-bristle brush or a sprayer.

Reattaching the cabinets

→ The last step of your painting process is to reattach your hardware. If you want to add some drama to your brand new painted cabinets,  look for new hardware. After that, attach the doors to the cabinet boxes and your drawers, if you’ve removed them.


If you’re remodeling your bathroom or kitchen fully, be sure to request a free 3D kitchen design from Nelson Cabinetry. You’ll get to see why Shaker-style cabinets are an everlasting trend. 



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Nelson Cabinetry

Nelson Cabinetry is an online distributor of high quality kitchen and bathroom cabinetry. We pride ourselves in delivering a high quality product via an easy to use, convenient website. Placing your cabinet order has never been easier and you can do so from the comfort of your home, office or job site.


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