Can You Paint Matte Over Gloss?

If you’re looking to change up the look of your walls, painting is a simple and effective solution. But what happens if you want to switch from gloss to matte?

You can paint matte over gloss. However, prepping the surface is essential since the slick surface of gloss paint does not create an ideal foundation for matte. Sand the area, then wipe it down with a damp cloth to remove dust or debris. Once dry, apply a layer of primer to create a smooth, uniform surface.

Although painting over gloss requires some amount of prep work, following the proper steps can result in a stunning, flawless finish. Read on to learn how to paint over gloss for a professional-looking finish.

Why Painting Matte Over Gloss Can Be Challenging

Painting over gloss can be an incredibly challenging task. One of the primary reasons for this challenge is that gloss finishes tend to reflect more light than matte finishes.

When attempting to apply matte paint over a glossy surface, the matte paint has difficulty adhering properly to the surface due to the slick nature of the glossy finish.

Another issue with painting matte over gloss is that the surface must be properly prepared before application. This process involves thoroughly cleaning and sanding the glossy surface to create a rougher texture to which the matte paint will better adhere. The matte paint will not properly bond to the glossy surface without proper preparation.

How to Paint Over Gloss With Matte Paint

Tools and Materials

To successfully paint over gloss with matte paint, you will need the following tools and materials:

  • Primer
  • Paint
  • Paint brushes and/or rollers
  • Sandpaper
  • Cleaning solution or TSP (trisodium phosphate)
  • Painter’s tape
  • Drop cloth

Step 1: Preparation

Before starting to paint, you must prepare the surface to ensure the new paint adheres properly. Start by thoroughly cleaning the surface with a clean cloth or towel to remove dirt, grime, or oils.

You can also use sugar soap or a similar cleaner to ensure the surface is completely free of dirt or debris. Next, use painter’s tape to mask off any areas that you don’t want to be painted.

Step 2: Repairing Any Damage

Once the surface has been cleaned and masked off, inspect it for any cracks or other damage that needs to be repaired. If there are any, use sandpaper to smooth out the area and then clean it again with a damp cloth.

Step 3: Sanding

After cleaning the surface, you need to sand it down slightly to create a rougher surface to which the new paint can adhere. Use 220-grit sandpaper to lightly sand the surface, making sure not to sand too hard as this can damage the surface. Once you are done sanding, wipe away any dust or debris with a clean cloth or towel.

Step 4: Primer

Once you have sanded the surface, apply a primer before painting. The primer will help the new paint adhere better and prevent gloss from showing through the new coat. Apply a thin, even layer of primer over the entire surface using a paintbrush or roller. Let the primer dry completely before moving on to the next step.

Step 5: Painting

Once the primer is dry, you can start painting with your matte paint. Use a paintbrush or roller to apply a thin, even coat of paint over the entire surface. Wait for the first coat to dry completely, then apply a second coat if necessary. Make sure to let each coat dry completely before applying the next one.

Step 6: Finishing

Once you have applied the final coat of matte paint, let it dry completely. Remove any painter’s tape from the surface and inspect it for any areas that need touching up. If there are any imperfections or missed spots, you can touch them up with a brush or roller.

6 Tips for Achieving a Smooth and Even Finish

When it comes to painting over gloss with matte paint, a few tips and tricks can help you achieve a smooth and even finish. Follow these guidelines to ensure your paint job looks seamless and professional.

1. Apply the Paint in Thin Layers

Apply the paint in thin, even coats. It’s tempting to apply thick coats of paint to cover up the gloss, but this will only make the finish look uneven and streaky. Instead, apply the paint in thin layers and allow each layer to dry completely before applying the next one.

2. Allow for Proper Drying Time

It’s important to allow each layer of paint to dry completely before applying another layer. This will help you avoid clumping or smudging. Additionally, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for drying time and application.

3. Use High-Quality Tools and Materials

High-quality tools and materials are essential for achieving a smooth, even finish. Make sure you use high-quality paint brushes and rollers that won’t leave behind visible brush strokes. Additionally, invest in good quality primer and paint to ensure the results last longer.

4. Have a Light Touch

When applying the paint, be sure to have a light touch. Don’t press too hard on the roller or brush, as this can cause streaks and an uneven finish. Instead, work in long, gentle strokes and use even pressure to create a clean, professional-looking finish.

5. Do Not Overwork Paint

Once you’ve applied the paint, avoid overworking it by going back over the surface repeatedly. This can create bumps, bubbles, or streaks that can ruin the finish. Instead, work quickly and efficiently to get the job done in as few strokes as possible.

6. Multiple Coats May Be Needed

Depending on the surface and the amount of gloss that is showing through, you may need to apply multiple coats of paint. This will help ensure an even, matte finish with no visible gloss.

Joshua Milton

Joshua Milton is a passionate DIY and home improvement enthusiast. With his expertise in various projects, he provides practical tips, step-by-step guides, and creative ideas for transforming your living space.

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