Can Bathroom Tiles Be Painted?


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Bathroom with towel rock and hooks design

Considering the state that the world is in, budget-friendly and cost-effective options for every facet of living have become crucial. At home, those who wish to renovate their bathrooms need to take a more practical approach. If your bathroom tiles look old and worn out, what options can you take other than a complete overhaul tile replacement? How about painting over the bathroom tiles?

Bathroom tiles can be painted, yes, but it needs a particular type of paint. As you would expect, you need waterproof paint to accomplish this task, such as epoxy and latex paint. Prepping the bathroom tile is also vital to achieving the best results.

What Type of Paint to Use?

As stated previously, if you want to paint over bathroom tiles, you will need two specific types of paint. These are:

Epoxy Paint

Olympic Zeron One-Coat Epoxy Swimming Pool Paint - 6 Pack Blue Ice
Olympic Zeron One-Coat Epoxy Swimming Pool Paint – 6 Pack Blue Ice (Image: Amazon)

Epoxy paint comes with a relatively limited selection of colors. However, it adds a distinct gloss to the surface and acts as a sealant due to its excellent water resistance properties. 

Latex Paint

Rust-Oleum 1992730 Painter's Touch Latex Paint, Half Pint, Gloss White
Rust-Oleum 1992730 Painter’s Touch Latex Paint, Half Pint, Gloss White (Image: Amazon)

Latex paint is available in a wide range of colors and sheens. This type of paint is less expensive, easier to remove, and is relatively odor-free. However, latex paint doesn’t stick to certain surfaces, which means multiple coating. 

Prepping the Bathroom Tiles

Before you begin your DIY bathroom renovation, it is crucial to prepare the tiles first. To obtain the best possible results in painting over your bathroom tiles, follow these relatively simple steps:

Clean the Tiles

Make sure that the tiles are prepped and ready to go by cleaning them thoroughly. Remove all dirt and grime with soap and scrub it clean, ideally, with an abrasive cleaner. Afterwards, wipe the surface of the tiles with a wet sponge to remove any remaining residue. 

Sand the Tiles

Next, you will need to sand down the tile’s surface using sandpaper (180 to 220 grit) to remove the gloss of the surface. This procedure will allow the paint to adhere better to the tile. To make this rather tedious step go faster, we highly recommend you use an orbital sander. 

Remove the Dust

You will need to dust off the surface after sanding the bathroom tiles. Use a vacuum, then wipe the wall using a damp cloth. Let it dry thoroughly and rerun the vacuum one more time. 

Should You Paint Your Bathroom Wall Tile?

If you are trying to take a more cost-effective route in renovating your bathroom, then painting is the next best alternative to replacing the tiles. However, take note that to achieve the best possible result in this endeavor, you need to replace the grout. This task can be quite a time consuming, but replacing the grout will prove beneficial in the long run, both in aesthetics and function.