How To Whitewash Laminate Furniture? [In 7 Easy Steps!]

Whitewashing laminate furniture can help create a weathered look that complements your home’s theme. But now you’re wondering how to achieve that look for your laminate furniture. We researched this concern and have some ideas to share!

Whitewashing laminate furniture generally requires you to:

  1. Wash the furniture with clean water.
  2. Sand the surface with 120-grit sandpaper.
  3. Wipe the sand away and prepare the primer.
  4. Lightly apply primer to the furniture and allow it to dry for at least 24 hours.
  5. Prepare the off-white paint by diluting it with water.
  6. Use a paint roller to apply the diluted paint onto the furniture.
  7. Let the paint dry for another 24 hours before applying varnish.

Upon looking at this procedure, it might seem like a fairly straightforward undertaking. But going through this process hastily and without regard for some details can make you commit mistakes. So continue reading as we discuss the steps to whitewash laminate furniture in greater detail!

Small kitchen in apartment unit white cabinets. white paint in can with brush. paint roller. sanding wood. varnishing wood. How To Whitewash Laminate Furniture

What Does Whitewashed Wood Mean?

Whitewashing helps whiten the look of different surfaces, including those on laminate and wooden furniture.

It creates a rustic weathered look that can help complement a room’s current aesthetic, enhancing the comfort and overall visual appeal.

How Do You Whitewash Laminated Wood Furniture?

Whitewashing laminated wood is a fairly easy job to complete and often doesn't require professional help. The first step in this procedure is to create the whitewashing solution.

Create the mixture by squirting three to four liberal amounts of dishwashing detergent in a reasonably large bucket of warm or room-temperature water.

Once you have that solution, continue the operation by following these general steps:

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contemporary kitchen cabinets, laminated wood panels

What You’ll Need

  • Whitewashing solution
  • Garden hose
  • Microfiber towels
  • 120-grit sandpaper
  • Primer
  • Off-white paint
  • Paint rollers
  • Paintbrush
  • Water-based latex varnish

Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Bring the laminate furniture outside. You may need help from another person if the object is quite heavy.
  2. Wash the furniture with clean water from the garden hose. Then, wipe it with a clean microfiber towel to dry.
  3. Lightly sand the surface with 120-grit sandpaper.
  4. Use another clean microfiber towel or rag to wipe away the dust from the sanding.
  5. Pour primer into the paint tray and use a roller to apply it to the laminate furniture.
  6. Allow the primer to dry.
  7. Clean the paint tray and pour your off-white paint into it. Dilute the paint with water to create a cream-like consistency.
  8. Dip a clean roller into the diluted paint and apply it to the laminate furniture.
  9. Allow the paint to dry for at least 24 hours.
  10. Protect the whitewashed surface with a paintbrush dipped in a water-based latex finish.
  11. Let the varnish dry and cure for another day before returning the laminate furniture to its original location.

Check out this all-surface primer on Amazon.

Be careful when selecting your primer and paint. Some paint options may not adhere well to laminate wood. If you use the incorrect primer and paint, you may encounter issues like bubbling or dripping.

You can also watch the video below if you want to see some alternate steps to complete this job:

How To Use Chalk Paint To Whitewash Furniture?

Aside from diluting paint, you may also use chalk paint to whitewash laminate or real wooden furniture. But remember that the results may vary depending on the base color of the piece of furniture you’re trying to whitewash.

For example, expect a somewhat lighter shade if you’re whitewashing furniture that already has a reasonably light color. On the other hand, whitewashing dark-colored furniture may not be as light as you might expect.

Also, if you’re going to use chalk paint indoors, make sure that you’re using a VOC-free option.

That way, it shouldn’t bring about a significant risk of health complications while using it inside. But maintain care for yourself by wearing a mask or respirator to reduce dangers further.

Top view on white paint brush on the opened can on the wooden table or floor painting and renovation repairing concept

After taking note of these details, continue this process by following these steps:

What You’ll Need

  • Off-white chalk paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Lint-free rags

Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Pour the chalk paint into a plastic cup. Then, dilute the paint with water.
  2. Mix the two liquids with your paintbrush until you get a milk-like consistency.
  3. Brush the surface of the furniture with the whitewash solution.
  4. Let the whitewash set for a few seconds before wiping it with a lint-free rag.
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until you achieve the desired finish.

See this VOC-free chalk paint for furniture on Amazon.

Bear in mind that removing the whitewash will be more challenging the longer you let its wet state stay on the furniture. You can also spray a bit of water in some whitewashed furniture regions if you feel you overdid it.

Watch this video to gain additional insight into this procedure.

Take note that this clip teaches you to whitewash wooden furniture. But the process should still be the same or highly similar to whitewashing faux wood furniture with chalk paint:

How To Remove Whitewash Stains From Laminate?

Perhaps one of the likable aspects of whitewashing laminate is that the final results are often removable.

That way, you can repaint the material to your desired outcome, which can be beneficial if you overdid your initial application.

Removing whitewash from laminate wood generally follows these steps:

What You’ll Need

  • White vinegar
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Water
  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Dust mop
  • Cloth rags
  • Acetone nail polish remover

Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Ensure that the laminate surface is clean by using a vacuum cleaner. Then, use a dust mop to remove any remaining dirt and other filth.
  2. Put white vinegar, rubbing alcohol, and water in a large bowl. Ensure that these ingredients are of equal parts.
  3. Add five or six healthy dollops of liquid detergent into the bowl. Mix all of the components until you see soap suds.
  4. Dip a cloth rag into the solution and use it to wipe the whitewash away from the laminate. Repeat this step as often as necessary until you can no longer remove the paint.
  5. Use another clean rag and dip it in acetone nail polish remover.
  6. Apply the rag with the acetone nail polish remover onto the leftover whitewash paint. Then, leave it there for at least 5 minutes.
  7. Wash the laminate with a garden hose.
  8. Remove loosened paint with a pair of tweezers.

Check out this product on Amazon.

How Is Whitewash Different From Limewash?

Generally, whitewashing involves using powdered lime to coat surfaces, resulting in a lightened look with classic aesthetics.

Although this term is often interchangeable with limewash, the latter word typically denotes using limestone to create the weathered look.

On the other hand, it’s possible not to use lime or limestone to whitewash different surfaces. Also, limewash can be available in different shades, but whitewash is generally only available in white.

Male hand painting wall with paint roller. Painting apartment, renovating with white color paint

Other distinctions between whitewash and limewash are:


  • Usable on smooth or rough surfaces
  • Easy to apply and dries fast
  • Good choice for wood and faux wood materials
  • Creates a satin or matte effect, depending on the amount of whitewash used


  • Typically has hypoallergenic properties, thanks to its high pH level
  • Can be great for outdoor furniture because it often enhances weather resistance
  • Good choice for materials like brick, drywall, stone, and plaster
  • It may not require frequent touchups

How Much Does It Cost To Paint Furniture With Chalk Paint?

If you use chalk paint to coat furniture without the help of professionals, expect to pay around $23 per quart of paint. That amount should cover up to 100 square feet of surface twice.

The initial costs might also be lower if you only need to paint or whitewash small furniture like a small stool or milking chair. If so, you might be able to find chalk spray paint at about $8.50 per can.

But if you choose to take advantage of professional assistance, prepare to spend approximately $40 to $100 per hour.

Some specialized technicians may also have a baseline price of $100 regardless of the difficulty of the furniture painting job.

But that also means the expenses can increase if the experts encounter additional challenges and requirements.

white paint brush in the hand of unknown man painting wooden board. How To Whitewash Laminate Furniture

Our Final Words

Whitewashing laminate furniture creates a weathered and vintage appeal that can work with certain household themes.

The process is DIY-friendly and shouldn’t require extensive knowledge or expertise in painting furniture. Follow the guidelines and methods mentioned above, and you can marvel at your whitewashed furniture.

If you liked reading this post, you could also check out these other great reads:

How to Paint Furniture Without Sanding Or Priming [7 Steps]

How Long Should Paint Dry Before Putting Furniture Back?

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