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Shower Tile Makeover – No Scrubbing Needed

May 25, 2024
Shower Tile Makeover – No Scrubbing Needed

Trending Tile Transformation

Who here has outdated tile in their bathroom but doesn’t want to rip it out and replace it? Did you know that you can paint it? Painting shower tile is an involved process, but not a hard one, and for about £100 you can give your shower a complete makeover.

I wavered about doing something with the tile in our master bathroom for a long time. It’s not terrible, and I don’t hate it…but by the same token I don’t love it either. I didn’t want to rip it out and re-tile, especially since this isn’t our forever home. I finally decided to give painting it a whirl, mostly because I like to experiment and I figured some of you might be curious about the process. Plus, I thought solid white would be an improvement over the blue, gray, and swirlies.

Getting Started

So let’s get started. First off, you need supplies. Quite a few of them, actually. The very first thing you need to do is remove all the caulk from the areas you’ll be painting, since you can’t paint over it. This should be in all the corners of your shower. You can go back and add it after your shower is painted and dry.

My husband decided to go ahead and remove and replace the grout in those areas. He said it was for the betterment of the tub…I think he just likes destroying things. Here’s the official “before” picture, after a few hours of prep work:

Before image of shower tile

The first non-optional step to painting shower tile is cleaning it. (Actually, the first four steps are cleaning.) This was new territory for me – I’m terrible at cleaning our showers. Terrible meaning I just never do it. If I don’t make something a top priority around here, it doesn’t get done, and scrubbing showers is never a top priority. In my opinion, showers should be self-cleaning. Can I get an amen?

Preparing the Surface

Here are the cleaning steps, which I simply did exactly as the box told me to do. The result? Insanely clean tiles. Literally so squeaky clean that I could have used the reflection to do my makeup. So beautifully clean that I may just go completely crazy and scrub my shower once in a while.

Next, I taped off the shower with ScotchBlue™ Painter’s Tape. I wanted to paint the tiles, but I didn’t want to paint the actual tub (except for the front, because it had some discoloration). The tub was already white and not in bad shape. No need to fix what isn’t broken, right? Also, the tub and tile paint has great reviews online, but whenever I read a negative review it said something like “it’s been a couple of years and it’s holding up great except for some chipping and peeling around the drain.” If the floor was everyone’s problem area, then I wanted to avoid painting the floor.

Applying the Paint

Shower paint is a two-part epoxy paint that you mix together by pouring part A (the activator) into part B (the base). You can use it on porcelain, ceramic, and fiberglass. First, I used my brush to cut in the edges and corners, just like you would if you were painting a wall. When that was done, I went after it with a roller.

Painting a tub may sound a little scary and intimidating, but really, it’s no different from painting anything else and it doesn’t really take any longer. (You only need to wait about an hour or two between coats). The only major difference between painting shower tile and painting a wall? THE SMELL. The tile paint is so freaking ridiculously strong; it’s insane. Do not even think about doing this without a respirator. I used this mask and could still smell it a bit, but it wasn’t bad. I would think that a mask like this would do a much better job. The fumes were so strong that my eyes teared up a bit, and I seriously considered putting on my snorkeling mask.

Finishing Touches

After I was completely finished painting, I removed the tape. Then I just needed to wait for it to dry for a few days before I started using my fresh new shower!

Do NOT use a roller that isn’t foam. I did some research before starting this project and it was recommended that you use a low nap roller over a foam roller. That’s all fine and dandy and obviously worked for some people, but my roller left tiny raised hairs all in my paint. Literally everywhere. I ended up sanding again after the first coat with 600 grit sandpaper to smooth them out and using a foam roller for the rest. Use a liner and throw it away after each coat, even if the paint in it looks dry and safe to pour over. The new paint will re-energize the old stuff, just enough to leave tiny, bumpy, gelatinous spots all over your nice smooth paint job and make you want to hurt somebody.

With that being said, here’s the final product…it looks so bright and clean! Perhaps a little too bright and clean…I think I have to paint the tub now. I used to think it was white, but against the ultra-white paint it looks gray and dingy (it looks better in pictures than in person).

The finish on the paint is surprisingly great. It’s smooth and shiny and really doesn’t feel like it’s going anywhere. My husband was very skeptical before we started, but now that it’s complete he suggested we do the guest bathroom as well.

Proven Results

If you have any questions, just leave them in the comments and I’ll do my best to answer you! I’m thrilled with how our shower turned out, and I’m confident you can achieve the same amazing results with a bit of elbow grease and the right product.

Ready to transform your bathroom with a fresh, clean look? Head over to Adam Cleaning to schedule your tile makeover today! Our experienced team will handle the dirty work, so you can sit back and enjoy your sparkling new shower.

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