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Can you paint bathroom tiles?

Renew.jpgI have experience using White Knight 500ml White Tub And Basin Paint on a bath. After the appropriate preparation, it has been fantastic for the last three years with no signs of it deteriorating.


You should find these step-by-step tutorials helpful: How to paint a bath, How to paint tiles and How to paint floor tiles.


For inside a shower, I am not aware of any paint recommended for use on floor tiles in a shower recess. Depending on the situation, installing a shower base may be a solution.


Rust-Oleum Tile Transformations Tile Coating System is a textured finish and is suitable for shower stalls. The Rust-Oleum Tub And Tile Refinishing Kit is a smooth finish and unsuitable for high humidity environments, including shower stalls.


You should find this technical data sheet for the Rust-Oleum Tile Transformations Tile Coating System  useful as it includes preparation instructions.


The following is taken from the preparation instructions:


  • Clean all surfaces thoroughly with a multi-purpose cleaner. Bleach is not recommended. Clean all grout lines with a stiff brush.


  • There is a packet of cleaner included in this kit. Dampen the included scrub pad and sprinkle the cleaner over it. Scrub the entire shower stall to remove mould, dirt and soap scum. Thoroughly rinse down the area, ensuring all residue is gone. Repeat the cleaning until the tiles feel clean and have a smooth surface.


  • Remove all silicone caulking inside the stall as the product will not adhere to it. This can be replaced after the painting is completed. Ensure you pay particular attention to any areas where the silicone could be smeared onto the tiles.


  • Inspect the grout between the tiles for any cracks, chips or holes. Repair grout first by re-grouting severely damaged areas.


  • Once cleaned, repaired and dried, remove any moveable fixtures. You can then tape off any adjacent walls with painter's tape.


There is no sanding process recommended before applying the Rust-Oleum Tile Transformations Tile Coating System. - MitchellMc


I haven't painted tiles before but have laid plenty. You'll get away with painting wall tiles but I don't suggest painting floor tiles - they'll wear and scratch too easily. - ProjectPete


We used the Dulux Renovation Range and super basic colours, painted our mirror and hooks with a light blush spray paint after sanding back with 80 & 120 grit.


For the wall tiles we used:

  • Electric sander
  • 120 grit (very high gloss and needed to buff back) followed by 180 and final 400 grit before priming & used 400 grit by hand to lightly sand between coats.
  • 1L Primer for Dulux
  • 1L White Gloss in Lexicon colour.


For the cabinets:



  • Uni pro mini rollers - bought a LOT and highly recommend
  • We used the white gloss paint on the vanity top as well to spruce it up, very little needed and made a giant difference.
  • Selley's sugar soap
  • Microfibre cloths.


Tip - the gloss paint dries uber quick so if you need to cut in and roll best to have a buddy or use both hands and do small areas at a time. The tape needs to be taken off as soon as you finish that area and re-tape for following coats.


It felt like a giant job and very overwhelming but if I can do it, anyone can. My girlfriend and I tackled it over the weekend and I could not be happier. - elmac


I've gone to the Dulux website in reference to this particular issue and they do not support the painting of the shower floor at this point in time. They are currently testing the product to see if it can withstand total water immersion for long periods of time. Perhaps when their results come out we will have a better idea if it is good to use in the shower recess. But outside the shower everything else is OK to be painted. - redracer01


I used Rust-Oleum in my own project and it has come out great! - Chris_T


Primers for tiles are not compatible with fibreglass showers. I've also been informed that the paint will not work in a fiberglass shower environment. For people in that situation I suggest considering replacing the fibreglass shower and tiling the area to give it a fresh new look. By tiling the shower in a white tile, you will probably need to re-grout once every five to seven years to give it a fresh new look.


On the other hand, Rust-Oleum Tub And Tile Refinishing Kit is ideal to use on a fibreglass shower. My only recommendation when using this product is to make sure you have plenty of ventilation and to prep the area thoroughly as advised on the packet. - EricL


From my own experience you have to make sure you remove any clear sealer and silicone. I didn't even notice that I had a clear sealer until I realised the paint wasn't sticking along one edge. I thought I'd just do a few coats over the clear silicone and eventually the paint would stick - but it doesn't! It wasn't the end of the world but it was a bit annoying as I had to scrape off 2cm of paint and silicone on the edge, then re-prime and re-paint. So get your stanley knife around the edges to check if you have clear silicone before you start priming.


I'm ecstatic with the result which is way better than the photos show.  It's a real brightener and the tiles look new. Definitely recommend. - Ari


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