Two coats of paint are essential for cabinets—you're building a surface. By the way, to get the nicest finish, use a brush, a 2- to 2 1/2-inch fine bristle brush. Whatever paint you use, ventilate the room—direct a fan out the window—and wear the masks they sell in paint stores.
You should use at least one paint coat & a maximum of two primer coats on the cabinets. One coat primer is enough to satisfy the primer's need in most cases. You can use two coats of primers, too, depending on your wooden furniture's surface conditions.
You do need to sand the cabinets…that's how the paint adheres (in the same way that you need to sand the floors for the stain to properly penetrate). And, you do need multiple coats of paint (at least 2 coats, but usually 3…. and yes, I know people that have done it and some of them even needed 3-5 coats).
There is no magical formula for drying time, but stick to at least 2-3 hours between coats. If you start painting the second or third coat and the paint starts peeling or is tacky, that is a good indication the paint is not cured quite yet, and you should give it some more time.
Prime the cabinet doors.
Only one coat of primer should do the trick, unless your cabinets are really dark, then I would recommend following up with one more coat of primer when that first coat is dry before moving on.
You will want to use 2-3 coats of primer to ensure there is a good bond between the new paint and the wall, and also to cover up any previous colors, especially if they are red, orange, or a strange outdated color.
Using a paint sprayer is one of the easiest ways to get a super smooth finish on your cabinets. By their very nature, paint sprayers eliminate brush strokes and roller marks completely. And painting with a paint sprayer is almost always faster than using a paint roller and paint brush.
For wood, brushing is fine, but you may want to hire a professional for a good finish. Using a roller to paint cabinets is a lot faster than brush painting, however, the fabric on the roller will create a 'bobbly' texture on the surface. The texture a roller puts on cabinets makes it unsuitable for gloss paint.
As for applying any sealer or topcoat, the general pro recommendation for cabinet painting is to use high quality stain blocking primer and 2-3 thin and even coats of super high quality paint with ample drying time between coats (Benjamin Moore's Advance paint is meant for cabinets without any top coat, since sealers ...
For your cabinet doors, they will need to be finished in some manner to protect them from damage. Paint can be a great choice, especially if you have a color in mind. If you are a person who loves a natural look, then a clear coat finish would be perfect for you!
Sand Lightly Between Coats
Dust can settle in the paint or primer as it dries. For the smoothest final coat, sand between coats of primer or paint with 220-grit sandpaper or an extra-fine sanding sponge. Then vacuum and tack as usual before recoating.
For the cabinet paint to dry, it usually takes about 1 – 2 weeks. This is what we call “dry to the touch” After the paint is dry to the touch the curing process begins, and this takes a little longer, about a month or thirty days to be exact.
Doors typically require a good amount of time, because you need to paint both sides and let them fully dry in between coats. You can begin with the back side of your cabinet doors. Apply one coat, wait 24 hours and then move on to your second coat of paint.
Your second coat will make them look a lot better! Your cabinets might not even be 100% covered until you add your first coat of paint. Just remember that primer will help the paint adhere better, give more durability to your cabinets, and give added protection in the long run.
If your cabinets are stained, apply at least two coats of quality primer. For me, there's nothing better than BIN, Zinsser's shellac-based pigmented primer. It dries fast and flat, without brush marks (unlike most oil-based primers). You can buy it at home and hardware stores, as well as online (view on Amazon).
Look for products labeled "peel bonding primer" or "peel stop." As long as the current coat of paint isn't chipping or peeling, you can apply these primers directly over top of the existing paint after a thorough cleaning.
My favorite sealer for painted furniture is General Finishes High Performance Top Coat and this would also be my first choice for sealing cabinets. It is water-based, non-yellowing, and extremely easy to work with (unlike many other sealers).
To prolong the lifespan of your cabinet paint job, then, finish the job by sealing your cabinets with a transparent top-coat. These sealing options include varnishes composed of polyurethane, polycrylic, spar urethane, nitrocellulose, waterborne acrylic, and more.
Once your cabinets are clean and dry, use a 100 or 150-grit sandpaper to roughen up the surface of the cabinets. Cabinet paint won't adhere properly to a smooth or shiny surface. You don't need to completely remove the prior finish, just rough up the surface enough to give the primer something to stick to.
Size Up the Job. Wood, wood-laminate and metal cabinets usually can be repainted without difficulty. Plastic laminate cabinets might not accept a topcoat of paint — those that can be refinished often require special paints and techniques, and results can vary.
While there are many types of paint to choose from, the best paint for kitchen cabinets is typically semi-gloss, gloss or satin. Matte is not practical in kitchens and baths where you will need durable paint you can easily clean.
Walls, Wood, and Metal - Small 1/4″ nap roller covers or foam rollers will produce the smoothest finish. Light to Medium Textured Surfaces - Microfiber rollers are best.
Magnolia Home by Joanna Gaines Trim, Door + Cabinetry Interior Paint is a water-based acrylic product designed for surfaces such as kitchen and bathroom cabinets, trim, window frames and doors. It offers the hardness of a traditional oil-based paint in an acrylic formula.