Can You Paint Tile

If you are getting tired of staring at the same drab looking tiles in your bathroom every day, then you may be thinking about replacing them.

While as a thought this may appear simple, however in reality it can take a lot of time and effort to remove the tiles and to replace them – and let’s not get started on the cost of it all.

There is an easier solution, and that is painting over the tiles. Yes, you can paint tile. This means that you can update your bathroom or kitchen without the hassle of having to make a mess removing every individual tile. 

Can You Paint Tile

Doing so is very costly and requires a lot of labor. While painting over the tiles may not be to everyone’s taste, it can be a great budget friendly alternative. 

However, you might be wondering a few things: will the paint chip? How do you paint the tiles? And does it matter what the material is of the tiles? Fortunately, you have come to the right place.

We tell you everything you need to know about painting tiles. 

Why Paint Tiles?

There are many reasons why a person may choose to paint their tiles at home. Firstly, it is a very cost-effective way of giving the room an upgrade. Changing the tiles can be very costly and time-consuming.

All you need to do is spend time cleaning, sanding, and painting. If you were to get the tiles redone altogether, you will likely need a professional to come in and spend time removing the tiles, prepping the wall for new tiles and attaching them.

It also might take them a couple of days to get the project finished – and then there is the huge cost involved of hiring a person to do it, and paying for the tiles themselves.

While painting tiles is a budget friendly way to update the tiles, you may find some downsides too. We shall look at the pros and cons next. 

Pros And Cons Of Painting Tiles


  • The project is able to be completed by you. This means no paying for labor and it can be a pleasant DIY project to do around the home. 
  • You can update the look and feel of the tiles to what suits you at the time. No need to attach permanent tiles that will be expensive to replace down the line.
  • Painted tiles only need limited maintenance. So long as you keep them clean with a mild detergent and do not scrub at them with a hard bristled brush, they will stay looking good for a while. 
  • It is very cost-effective. You will find that the materials needed to paint the tiles are far cheaper than labor and brand new tile costs. 


  • Prep work is needed. You might think you can just paint the tiles as-is, but you will need to prep them first by cleaning and lightly sanding them. You also may need to fix any broken tiles.
  • Painting tiles is not a permanent solution. While it is costly to replace tiles with brand new tiles, it is a permanent solution compared to painting. Over time the paint may fade and begin to peel. If walked on or in a high moisture area, this will reduce its life.
  • Limited areas for painting tiles. The painted tiles should not be done in high moisture areas such as the shower. It will greatly reduce the clean look of the paint, and cause it to blister, fade, and peel. 
  • Painted tiles will need to dry. If you are painting tiles on the floor or in a bathroom, you may need to schedule time for areas not to be in use. A full 24 hours will ensure it is completely dry. 

What Are Tips For Painting Tiles?

Can You Paint Tile

Because tiles have a surface that has not been specifically designed to be painted on, there are a few things you will need to ensure you do first. 

However, you can still successfully use paint as a way to change the look of the tiles. So, before you begin your project, have a read of these tips first:

  • Use the correct paint – you will need to source tile paint only. If you cannot find any, the other good option is epoxy paint. The type to avoid is regular acrylic-latex paint that is used for both outdoor and indoor.
  • Clean first – you will want to spend time cleaning both the tile and the grout thoroughly before you do anything else. You might find that a lot of dirt has become attached to the surface over the years, especially in the kitchen. 
  • Sand the tile – often tiles have a gloss-like surface which paint may find difficult to adhere to. For this reason, you will want to lightly sand the surface. Before you decide to sand the tile, make sure that painting the tiles is definitely going to be on the cards. Otherwise, you may have ruined the look of the tiles. 

Is It Okay To Paint Bathroom Tiles?

A general rule when it comes to painting tiles is that you will want the area to have a low moisture content. 

So, while painting the tiles in the kitchen is absolutely fine – despite cooking setting off steam into the air – the bathroom needs some extra considerations.

You can paint the tiles in the bathroom, however you will want to be very particular about the area of the tiles. The bathroom tiles which should be avoided are around the shower. The tiles will be exposed to far too much water. 

This will cause the tiles to lose color, blister and fade. 

Final Thoughts

It is absolutely fine to paint tiles, however you will need to keep in mind that the tiles should not be in a high moisture area, otherwise they will be prone to prematurely peeling and fading.

Otherwise, painting tiles is a great budget friendly way to upgrade those tired looking tiles.

Joel Adams
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