painting over bathroom tile

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I can earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

Only one more week til Easter and it’s getting to be that time of year where I get into spring cleaning/organizing and like to tackle a project or two. Right now I have a half-finished bathroom facelift that is driving me crazy so that will be first on my list. It is the third bathroom at our house that I’ve painted tile in and I am so happy with all of the results. It took a handful of blogs like this for me to take the plunge, so if this is what you needed then check out my pictures below!

Can you paint over bathroom tile? If you only knew how many times I have Googled this phrase! Most of the bathrooms in our mid century house have the traditional look of the time–square tile going up the wall in the entire bathroom. And while we are lucky the builders didn’t go with mauve or baby blue, there was just something about the 60 year old bisque tiles that I wanted to freshen up.

I took a few tutorials’ advice and went with an oil-based high-gloss white paint. I have used a tile refinishing kit as well (and I’ll review that one at some point) but I like this method better.

Today I’ll show you the second bathroom I painted tile in because it is my favorite and it’s completed. For your viewing pleasure I give you my TWO before photos. The previous inhabitant of our boys’ bathroom was a teenage girl, hence the purple.

I knew I needed to paint it, but for some reason I felt like I needed something dark to go over the dark, so I chose navy. Notice the vanity was painted too and although I did weakly attempt to sand it down…I ultimately chose paint as an easier route.

The paint goes on pretty much… paint. I wish I had an amazing step by step tutorial to give you but there isn’t much to it! Anyone can do it. I will say, I think it’s best to do 2-3 light coats and I always start by painting the grout lines with a brush.

After all the grout is covered, then go back and finish the first coat over the entire surface of the tile and use a foam roller. Be sure the tile is very clean and dry before beginning.

We chose Alabaster by Sherwin Williams for the walls (we were expecting more of an off white, but it worked well and really made the room feel bigger) and some leftover grey paint for the vanity.

Throw in some Shutterfly canvases on sale, an Aldi rug that doesn’t exactly match but cost less than $5, and a plant that you cannot kill (seriously all you black thumbs check out Sansevieria , which sounds like a Harry Potter spell but is actually the name of a plant I have personally kept alive for over 3 years) and I think we ended up with what we were going for! It feels much larger and cleaner and I think that we managed to keep the mid century vibe and original charm.

As far as holding up, this is the boys’ bathroom which gets plenty of use and it has held up great for about a year so far. It is worth mentioning that we don’t shower in that bathroom, so the walls aren’t getting sprayed down every day. But if you can imagine two boys under 3 at bathtime–you know the tile is getting soaked.

I know it’s not for everyone, but if you don’t want to rip out tile and are in need of an update, this is pretty hard to beat. For anyone out there Googling Can I paint my bathroom tile? I say go for it!

If you feel so inclined, help spread the tile painting confidence and pin this post:

 photo Northwell_Alt-Taylor-MidCenturyMom 1_zpsplbx4gxd.png

2 thoughts on “painting over bathroom tile”

Comments are closed.