How do I use chalk paint

How to process chalk paint? - The 10 most frequently asked questions about the application

If you are working with chalk paint for the first time, it is quite normal that you are still a little unsure. 🙂 How do you have to use chalk paint? I have put together the ten most common questions about working with chalk paint for you. At the bottom of the article you can find the video for this article. So if you don't feel like reading, just scroll down to the bottom! 😉


1. Which substrates are suitable for chalk paint?

Chalk paint can be used on absorbent surfaces such as wood, cardboard, clay or even fabric, as well as on non-absorbent surfaces such as metal, glass, plastic or painted surfaces. Yes, you can say that chalk paint can be used on all surfaces. It doesn't work equally well on all surfaces, but it works.


2. Do I have to prepare my surfaces?

Yes, a little preparation is almost always required. The surfaces should always be dry, firm and free from dust and grease. Sometimes cleaning with normal detergent is enough. But sometimes the dirt is more stubborn. Leachers and degreasers can help (e.g. the one here: Amazon Molto Leachers and Degreaser). Of course, you can also start with the paint right away, but then it will not adhere as well as after optimal preparation.


3. Do I have to sand down old furniture?

If your old piece of furniture is already losing its paintwork, i.e. it is splintering, then you should definitely remove all loose paintwork. Otherwise it is usually not necessary to sand off the old paint. It is enough if you lightly roughen your surfaces with sandpaper after cleaning, so that the new color has some hold.


4. Do I have to prime?

That always depends on what you want to paint. Because while with some materials it is completely ok to start directly with the chalk paint, it can discolor quite ugly on certain surfaces. Types of wood with a high proportion of tannic acid, such as oak, can bleed out. The ingredients of the wood react with the fresh color and yellowish stains are formed.

To prevent this, you should always prime if you are unsure. Make sure that it is an insulating primer, i.e. that the primer has a blocking effect. You can find more information on this topic under primers.


5. What do I use to apply the chalk paint?

Basically you can apply the chalk paint as you like. I mostly use a brush that can pick up a lot of paint. You could have a look at my Brush & Roller page. Depending on which technique you choose, you can also use a sponge or cloth. A roller is also basically suitable for applying paint. However, the result will be too smooth for me personally. After all, what is special about chalk paint is that you can still see the brushstrokes later. When you work with chalk paint for the first time, you will immediately see what I mean. 🙂


6. How much chalk paint do I need?

Yes, that is a question that I can only answer with very much "it depends". Basically, chalk paint is very productive and you will definitely get further than you think. Perhaps for a rough orientation: For my buffet cabinet, a can (with a can I always speak of a 750ml standard size) of the white chalk paint was enough. With one can, I could easily have deleted five or more of armchairs like the Peter upholstered chair. And one can would be enough to paint two or three dressers like Funky Bertha.


7. How long does the chalk paint have to dry?

Compared to other paints, chalk paint dries very quickly. Depending on how thick you have applied the paint, it can take between 30 minutes and 2-3 hours for the paint to dry. If you want to give your painted object the shabby look with sandpaper, then you'd better wait a little longer. Because if the paint is still slightly damp, the sandpaper will clog up too quickly.


8. How can I seal the chalk paint?

When sealing the dried chalk paint, you have the choice between furniture wax and clear lacquer. Basically, wax is more matt than clear lacquer, but it is not quite as resistant. Clear lacquer offers the best protection, but also always brings a little shine to the surface. Feel free to read the answer to the question When do I use clear varnish and when do I use furniture wax for sealing? in my FAQ.


9. Can I also use chalk paint outside?

It all depends on what you plan to do and what result you want. 😊 I have tested for you once how well chalk paint holds outdoors. In my article Shabby Clay Pots for the Garden, I painted simple clay pots with chalk paint and then watched what happened to you. The result: the paint will peel off after a very short time and become very unsightly. The look is perfect for my pots. Today, after about two years, the pots look great. They look like they are decades old. 😊 If you do not want such a scruffy look for your project, then better use a paint that is designed for outdoor use.


10. Can I paint my stairs or table with chalk paint?

Basically there is almost nothing that you cannot paint with chalk paint. However, you should be aware that chalk paint is not as resistant as, for example, acrylic paint. If you ask me whether you can paint such a stressed surface as a table top or stairs with chalk paint, then I usually advise against it. Of course, you can finally seal your surfaces with a very resistant clear varnish. Floor varnish, for example, is very suitable. Nevertheless, I am of the opinion that the surfaces simply do not stay beautiful for long when used heavily. Feel free to read my answer to the question Can I paint my stairs with chalk paint? In my FAQ.


Do you have a few general questions about chalk paint? Then have a look at my article Chalk paint - The 5 most common questions. Otherwise you will definitely find one or the other useful answer in my FAQ.

In my video, I will answer the questions again personally. 😉

For further reading

My top 5 chalk paintsCalk paint and lime paint


This post was published in Blog, Interesting facts and marked with chalk paint by Leonie. Permalink