Best Paint For Upcycling Wood Furniture

If you want to make sure that your furniture looks as good as possible, then you need to find the best paint for furniture. At the same time, there are a lot of options for furniture paint. How can you choose the best one? There are a few key points to keep in mind.

Best Paint For Upcycling Wood Furniture Top Picks

Best Overall
Best For Environment
Best Dry Time
Best Value
Shabby Chic Furniture Paint
Hemway Dove Grey Chalk Paint Matt Finish Wall...
Rust-Oleum Satin Furniture Paint, Sage Green
Johnstone's 386500 Revive Chalky Furniture...
Best Overall
Shabby Chic Furniture Paint
Best For Environment
Hemway Dove Grey Chalk Paint Matt Finish Wall...
Best Dry Time
Rust-Oleum Satin Furniture Paint, Sage Green
Best Value
Johnstone's 386500 Revive Chalky Furniture...

Last update on 2020-11-29 at 07:15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Best Furniture Paint Product Reviews

Shabby Chic Furniture Paint: The Best Overall

Shabby Chic Furniture Paint is a great option if you are looking to renovate and transform your furniture. This water-based paint doesn’t have any odour, making it great for anyone who is looking for paint that will not irritate their lungs or nasal passages.

Water-based with a matte finish, this paint can be applied directly to your wood furniture, completely transforming its appearance.

With two coats, this paint can also be used to create contrasting colors, particularly if it is followed up with some sanding or waxing after the paint has dried, which usually takes place in around two hours.

Once the paint has dried, you can use sand or score to create a unique appearance for your furniture. Suitable for use both inside or outside, this is a strong choice for upcycling furniture.

Some of the key benefits of Rainbow’s Chalk Furniture Paint to note include:


This water-based paint does not require a primer, so it can be applied directly to the furniture to complete the job

The paint can be applied either with a brush or roller directly to the bare wood, making it straightforward to use

After the paint has dried, it is possible to lay on a second coat in a second color to create a unique, distressed look


This paint takes a little bit longer to dry than some of the other options

If the wood is not sanded before painting, the coat may look uneven

Rainbow’s Chalk Furniture Paint is one of the top choices on the market today

Hemway Chalk Paint: The Best for an Environmentally-Friendly Paint

Hemway Chalk Paint is made in Britain with natural, eco-friendly ingredients, making it ideal for anyone who is looking for an environmentally-friendly paint option.

It is safe, easy to use, and water-soluble. It has been certified to the top safety standards in the EU, which are EN 71-3 + A1.

Furthermore, this paint can be applied directly to wood furniture for an easy, straightforward application.

Finally, this paint also creates a long-lasting matt finish. After applying this paint, you can even sand or score the furniture to create a distressed finish.


Hemway Chalk Paint has been made using natural ingredients, limiting the impact that you have on the environment

It is quick and easy to use, featuring a fast drying time

Only a single coat is needed due to its high pigment to water ratio


This is one of the most expensive options on the market

It is not as durable as some of the paint choices

Hemway Chalk Paint is ideal if you want a paint that is great for the planet.

Rust-Oleum Satin Furniture Paint: The Best for a Quick-Drying Paint

Rust-Oleum Satin Furniture Paint has been designed to provide furniture with a silky smooth touch. Featuring elegant patterns with calming shades, this paint will work well with just about any type of furniture.

There is no priming necessary, allowing you to upcycle your furniture in a straightforward manner. You also do not need to sand your furniture before you use this paint. It even works great on toys over old paint or varnish, making it great for children’s toys as well.

The main advantage of the Rust-Oleum Satin Furniture Paint is that it dries quickly, allowing you to apply another coat in a matter of a few hours if you must.


This paint will be touch-dry in an hour, allowing you to apply another coat quickly

It has been certified safe for toys in addition to furniture, making this a versatile paint selection

This water-based paint doesn’t have any odour at all, preventing it from irritating your nasal passage or lungs as you work


The paint coverage is not as great as some of the other options, so you might need more paint to get the job done

The hues are not as sharp as some of the other paint choices

Rust-Oleum Satin Furniture Paint is a great option if you want to complete your job as quickly as possible.

Johnstone’s Revive Chalky Furniture Paint: The Best Value Buy

Featuring some of the lowest prices on the market, Johnstone’s Revive Chalky Furniture Paint is tough and durable. It lays on a layer of paint that is scratch-resistant. With a formula that is easy to apply, it is simple to transform the look of just about any furniture.

It can also be applied to household accessories, making this a versatile paint option. It also dries relatively quickly, shortening the time it takes for you to complete your paint jobs.  


This is one of the least expensive choices available today

This is a durable paint that will protect your furniture from scratches

You can also use this same paint on your household accessories


This paint is only available in five colors, limiting your choices

It does not spread as smoothly as the other options

If you are looking to save money on your painting job, then Johnstone’s Revive Chalky Furniture Paint is for you.

Finding the Right Furniture Paint

If you want to find the right furniture paint, then there are a few points to keep in mind. These include:

The Light Reflection

You need to think about the amount of light that the paint is going to reflect when you finish it. A few of the most common options include:

  • Flat paint does not have any resin in the formula and will not reflect much light, giving it a matte or velvet appearance. This paint will not stand up to much touching or washing, so it is important to keep this in mind.
  • Satin finish reflects a small amount of light and might resemble eggshells. If you need a matte finish but want something that is more durable, then go with a satin finish. There are washable options available as well, making it easier to clean.
  • Semi-gloss is one of the most popular furniture finishes because it reflects light well and stands up to routine wear and tear, including cleaning. With a higher concentration of resins, it will be a bit shinier.
  • High-gloss adds character and drama to the furniture but also requires a lot of preparation. This is the most durable option when it comes to furniture paint but the bright shine will also amplify any imperfections in the furniture itself.

Think about how much light you want the paint to reflect before making a decision.

Choosing the Right Color for Your Furniture

When you are trying to figure out which color you want to use for your furniture, there are a few key points that you should note. These include:

  • Scale: Think about how large the furniture piece is. In general, the smaller the furniture piece, the bolder the colors can be. Using sharp, bold colors on large pieces of furniture will overwhelm the room.
  • Style: You should also think about whether the furniture piece has curves and angles or sharp, straight lines. If the furniture piece is sharp and simple then go for a plain, neutral color.
  • Tone: Are you going to paint the entire piece or do you want to leave some wood exposed? This can help you guide your color choices as well.

Thinking about these questions ahead of time will help you find the right color scheme for your furniture.

Precautions When Painting Wood Furniture

When you start painting your wood furniture, a few of the key precautions to take include:

  • Always check to make sure you do not need any primer
  • Turn the furniture upside down and paint the underside first
  • Do not paint if the conditions are too cold or too humid, as this will drastically impair the final appearance of the piece
  • Make sure that you provide the furniture with enough time to dry between coats
  • Always use a brush that has been designed for wood furniture

Thinking about these precautions first will help you achieve the best possible results.

Deciding on the Best Paint for Upcycling Your Furniture

In the end, the clear winner is the Rainbow Chalk Furniture Paint. Rainbow Chalk Furniture Paint is water-based, so it will not irritate your airways as you paint. It can be applied quickly to just about any wood furniture and does not require any primer before it is applied.

Furthermore, it is available in a wide range of colors, making it easy for you to tailor your look to meet your needs. Even though Hemway Chalk Paint is a solid runner-up thanks to its sustainable design, it simply is not as durable as Rainbow Chalk Furniture Paint and is significantly more expensive.

If you need the best paint for furniture, then go with an option from this list.  

Paint For Upcycling Wood Furniture Sale Checker

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Frenchic Furniture Paint - Al Fresco...
Self priming, self sealing with a very low, almost flat finish; Suitable for wood, laminate, UPVC and composites and metal
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Rust-Oleum AMZ0012 A Classic, Smooth Touch...
Water-based with virtually no odour; Exceptional coverage in just one coat; No priming or sanding necessary on most surfaces
−£2.99 £12.00
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Rust-Oleum AMZ0038 A Clear, colourless Wax...
Made from natural waxes; Protects your finished paint effect; Provides a lasting sheen; Can be reapplied over time to maintain protection
−£1.99 £10.00
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Rust-Oleum 250ml Universal Paint - Gloss...
Paint and primer in one; Can be applied directly to wood, metal, plastic, ceramic and even rust
−£1.98 £10.60

Last update on 2020-11-29 at 07:15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This post was published on October 26, 2020

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