How to paint your bathroom for lasting appeal


Play with color. Paint manufacturers’ websites often have tools that allow you to upload a photo of your room and then select wall colors until you find a look you like. Also think about your bathroom vanity and ask yourself if it needs a fresh coat of paint. For a bathroom next to a bedroom, consider a color that goes well with the paint color of the bedroom, perhaps a lighter or darker shade. And if white is your favorite color, be sure to choose the right white paint.

To choose the right finish. Satin is more durable and shinier than eggshell and is ideal for a bathroom. It is also easy to clean. Use it for walls, ceiling, and even moldings, as many satin finishes are more durable than they once were. The semi-gloss is even more resistant and easy to clean. It can be used on walls, ceiling, moldings and vanity, if you don’t mind a shinier look. A satin sheen draws attention to any imperfections on the walls (semi-gloss does this even more), so be sure to prep the walls to make them as smooth as possible.

First wash the walls. New paint needs a clean, dry surface to adhere to. Existing mold can prevent fresh paint from sticking properly and may even bleed through the new coat. Remove mold with a sponge dipped in a solution of one part bleach to three parts water. The room should be well ventilated while you clean, so open a window or run an exhaust fan. Wipe surface with clean water and allow to dry before painting.

Protect what you don’t paint. With all their nooks and crannies, small bathrooms can be a challenge to paint. Apply painter’s tape to the edges of areas you don’t want painted. And use a belt brush with a tapered tip. Unlike the bristles of a paddle brush, those of a belt brush are cut diagonally, making it easier to control.

Paint, then wait. Once you’ve finished applying the paint, let it dry overnight before using the shower. Otherwise, any water splashing or beating onto the newly painted surface can soften and run the paint.


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