Should You Paint Inside Bathroom Cabinets?

Bathroom cabinets are a helpful storage solution for tucking away hygiene products and medications. The cabinets in the bathroom are often located above or below a sink, near a toilet, and are in an area with substantial moisture. You may be wondering if it is necessary to paint the inside of this storage space? We researched the best treatment for bathroom cabinets so you can learn the best approach.

Some experts pass on painting the inside of a bathroom cabinet, as the visible surface is more important, and it is typically not necessary. If a cabinet has fixed shelves, you may wish to paint the interior to give it a more polished look. Remember to remove any hardware like hinges or door pulls before painting. Also, be mindful about your choice of paint and its application to account for warping, aesthetics, and contact with moisture.

Beautiful bathroom cabinetry with a tasteful paint treatment can make or break the look and feel of a bathroom. Tackle the decision to paint the interior of bathroom cabinets or leave them natural to match your aesthetic preferences.

A modern entrance of bathroom, sink and cabinet classic style, Should You Paint Inside Bathroom Cabinets?

What's Best For Bathroom Cabinets

Many people enjoy the look of a painted bathroom cabinet inside and out. It is not always necessary to paint the inside of a bathroom cabinet, as you need to look out for possible chipping, warped surfaces, attracting mildew, mold, or visible dirt. A bathroom cabinet will need wiping down often because it is in a moist place, so the choice of paint or lacquer coating should withstand frequent scrubbing. Some people decide there is no need to paint the inside of a bathroom cabinet; it is mostly a choice of preference.

Detail close up of sink, faucet, countertop, yellow cabinets and mirror

Wood cabinets are not the only type that can be painted, as plastic, metal, and vinyl cabinets can also receive an upgraded look with an attractive coat of paint. You may need to use rollers, brushes, or a sprayer to apply paint to the surface of a bathroom cabinet. Give yourself sufficient time to complete a paint job. Some paint types take a few days to dry thoroughly, have necessary safety gear, and the room should be adequately ventilated. Also, depending on the material, the cabinet may need to be cleaned, stripped, sanded, and primed before you can paint.

Painting a cabinet is a quick way to transform its aesthetic value without resorting to an outright replacement. After painting cabinet, you can highlight its beauty with new hinges, door pulls, or knobs. Have fun painting according to personal taste and the rules of color theory. Choose neutral colors, electric hues, or darker paints and contrast to create a charming or chic bathroom.

Do You Normally Paint The Inside Of Cabinets?

Painting the inside of a bathroom cabinet is typically unnecessary, and doing so is often a matter of personal preference. If a cabinet is plastic, vinyl, or metal inside, there is no need to paint, and it might not adhere to the surface well.

But, it is easier to apply a coat of paint to a cabinet once you apply an appropriate primer to the surface, depending on if it is wood, plastic, or metal. Usually, wood cabinets are painted, especially if they have built-in shelving or details, you want to highlight. Make sure to remove any hardware like hinges, door pulls, or knobs first.

If you choose to paint the inside of a cabinet, it will need to be scrubbed clean and prepped to accept the medium. Most experts suggest an application of trisodium phosphate or TSP to the surface of the cabinet before sanding and applying a primer. Follow the manufacturer's directions whether using a shellac, oil-based, or latex primer. Follow up with a coat or two of oil or latex paint as needed. Please note that there are differences when using latex paint, enamel, or lacquer depending on the finish you want for your cabinet and durability against moisture. 

Read More: How to Paint Bathroom Cabinets [9 Steps]

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What Is The Best Way To Paint Bathroom Cabinets?

Need to paint your bathroom cabinet? First, you will need to give it a good scrub to remove any grease, buildup, dirt, grime, and surface ready. Remove any hardware, nails, screws, hinges, knobs, and anything else that will get in the way of the paint. Apply a primer suited for the cabinet material and readily allow your choice of paint to adhere.

Keep in mind; latex paint will resist oil-based paint. However, if you want flexibility, opt for an oil-based primer that accepts any paint pretty easily. A bonding primer is ideal for hard-to-paint glossy surfaces.

If you are painting cabinets with a smooth surface or lack fixed shelves, use a wide brush or a roller to apply the coat quickly. Consider using a sprayer or a smaller brush to paint hard-to-reach areas or places where there are significant raised details. Be patient, as you may need to add more than one layer to reduce chipping, flaking, and absorb moisture. Some paints take days to dry thoroughly, account for ventilation, and do not rush. Give your paint sufficient time to dry before adding multiple layers or a protective topcoat to finish the job.

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Can You Spray Paint Inside Bathroom Cabinets?

Applying spray paint to the inside of a bathroom cabinet is an excellent idea for more than a few reasons. If your cabinet has raised areas or details that would make painting with a brush or roller difficult, spray paint gets the job done. You can quickly apply a layer of spray paint to the inside of a bathroom cabinet and achieve professional-looking results. And last but not least, spray paint is fast and easy to apply and doesn't require a lengthy prep or clean-up process to use.

Check out this enamel spray paint on Amazon.

Check out this high-gloss spray paint on Amazon.

How Do You Finish The Inside Of Bathroom Cabinets?

Give bathroom cabinet a new lease on life and elegant facelift via a finishing technique. Choose from a clear lacquer, enamel paint, oil-based stain. Know before you start, as water-based mediums often resist an oil-based layer. Lacquer is the most common finish for a cabinet because it dries quickly, is easy to apply, and protects the surface for years. Ideally, you will need two applications of lacquer to seal a bathroom cabinet. An oil stain is best for wooden cabinets, and a coat of enamel paint provides a smooth, easy-to-clean surface that looks lovely.

In Closing 

After reading this article, we hope you feel more informed about painting the inside of bathroom cabinets and whether it is appropriate to do so. Bathroom cabinets are not only a practical storage solution for a well-used room in a home but provide a touch of beauty and style. In most cases, bathroom cabinets are left unfinished. However, if a cabinet has certain details, it may behoove you to ensure it is stained or receives a suitable coat of paint.

Before you go, check out the following articles about bathroom fixtures and decor.

Read More: What Kind Of Paint Should You Use On Bathroom Cabinets?

Read More: What Sherwin Williams Paint Is Best For Cabinets?

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