How I Painted my Bathroom Cabinets (with video tutorial)

Hello friends,

I’ve been procrastinating on writing this post for over a year! For some reason, I didn’t have all pictures and information saved in a single place,  so I knew it would take a lot of time and effort to do put everything together. The holiday break and freezing temperatures outside gave me the perfect conditions to just sit down and get it done, so here we go!

I prepared this tutorial to show you how I painted the bathroom cabinets in my previous house back in Connecticut. When I tackled this project I had no idea that six months later I would be moving to Virginia. Anyways, it was a good learning experience for me, and the nice result probably gave the potential buyers a very good first impression.

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Here is how they looked before.

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Ok, they didn’t look so bad, but I grew tired of that dark brown stain on top of dark tiles. It made the space feel small and cramped. I wanted it to feel more open and fresh, so I decided to lighten it up.

Here is what it looks now.

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Better, right? I knew you would agree.

I started by removing all drawers and doors then uninstalling all hardware.

Since the wood was in pretty good condition and not horribly dirty, I skipped sanding altogether. Instead, I wiped all areas to be painted with this deglosser.

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I just rubbed well twice using a paper towel but you can also use a clean rag.

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After you apply the deglosser, it is very important to remove it completely by cleaning all areas thoroughly. I used TSP diluted in water for that step.

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TSP for cleaning

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To avoid getting the walls, counter and tiles dirty with paint, I taped all the edges of the vanity.

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Taped areas to protect them from paint

Since that bathroom was a high traffic and high-humidity area, I decided to take an extra precaution to ensure paint adherence and durability. I primed everything with an oil-based primer.

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I used my favorite foam roller for the larger areas and quality paint brushes for corners and narrow areas.

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Rolling the primer

One coat of primer is enough. It doesn’t need to look perfect.

I used the brushes on nooks and crannies.

I waited overnight for the primer to dry, then I lightly sanded everything with a very fine grit sand pad.

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Finally, I rolled and brushed two coats of  Valspar Cabinet Paint in “Graceful White”. I let the first coat dry completely then lightly sanded and cleaned everything before applying the second coat.

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Valspar Cabinet Paint

The best thing about this paint is that it requires NO SEALER. It is super resistant and durable and it has a beautiful semi-gloss sheen. Another big advantage for me is that I can clean my brushes with soapy water. No harsh, stinky solvents needed.

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TWS Painting Bathroom Cabinets 11-1

Finally, here is the video tutorial I made of the full process. Remember to subscribe to my YouTube Channel so you don’t miss any of my tutorials!

Let me know what you think, and feel free to leave your questions in the comments.

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Thanks for reading!



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It all started in the spring of 2013. I realized how tired I was to see my house entirely decorated with IKEA stuff. Nothing against IKEA, but after 12 years, I just needed some change. I wanted stylish, original furniture, but noticed that everything I liked from retail stores was way out of my budget. Thanks to Google, Youtube, and a couple of amazing blogs, I was able to discover and explore the world of furniture refinishing, and it was the beginning of my addiction. I now spend my days rescuing old, dull, unwanted pieces of furniture to give them a fresh look so they can be displayed, used and loved again for many more years to come. Thanks for stopping by.

20 thoughts on “How I Painted my Bathroom Cabinets (with video tutorial)

  1. Nice to meet you! Your cabinet looks spectacular. I hired out my kitchen a couple of years ago but I had no idea there was a cabinet enamel with NO BRUSH STROKES! I wonder how that might work on my banister? Great job


    1. Hi Debbie, thank you so much! I’ve heard only one person complaining that this paint pealed easily. I used it in several projects and never had that problem. I do make sure my surface is either light sanded or deglossed, super clean, and primed with oil-based primer before I apply the paint. It has a beautiful finish, and I think it would work very well on banisters. Good luck!


  2. Pat it looks gorgeous. I always learn so much from your blog. I had no idea what a deglosser was or that you had to use TSP after that. You are like an encyclopedia.


    1. Haha! Google and YouTube are the encyclopedia, not me 🙂 Thanks, Mary! The deglosser was a change gamer for me. You should try.


  3. The cabinet looks great and really does give the bathroom a completely different look!! Wonderful job and I am impressed with your patience. I have such a hard time waiting for paint to dry, lol!!


  4. SO excited to find 2 new great time-saving products in one post (deglosser and the cabinet paint 😉 You made my day and bought me time to work on more projects!!! Many thanks 🙂


  5. I’m thinking of painting our light oak bathroom vanity and medicine cabinet either charcoal gray or black. Would you still use primer under a dark color?


    1. Hi Cindy, Yes I would prime it too. It helps the paint to stick to the surface, especially in a humid room. I’d tint the white prime with some black paint so you make it a gray, which will help with coverage. Good luck!


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