Kitchen, Paint

Rustoleum Painted Countertops and Floors: Months Later

Remember when I painted my kitchen countertops?

painted kitchen countertops

Remember when I experimented with the same paint on my bathroom’s linoleum floors (and gave me a break from the horrible yellowed pattern)?

Want to know which one held up better?

I’ve put both the kitchen countertop and master bathroom floor through pretty rigorous testing (walking on, cutting on, dropping things on, etc), and here is what they both look like after several months of being subjected to Ugg-duck use:

painted kitchen countertops


Scratch marks:  While I don’t think it’s wise to cut directly onto your countertops (especially if you’ve painted them, which might leave little flakes of paint in your food), I did try out a knife or two on the countertop surface.  Charlie had a respiratory infection which required that I give her half a pill every eight hours (my guess is that they decided on half of a pill instead of just making one pill=one dose simply because they think someone cutting up pills for a dog is hilarious).  Being the lazy person I am at 3 AM cutting such pills, I just used a large knife to snap them in half, straight on top of the counter.  As you can see, the painted surface of the countertop did not survive:

Paper residue:  Sinks get wet.  Sometimes paper is nearby.  Or a plastic grocery bag with ink on it.  Either way, sometimes something gets wet and will sit on your countertop.  And if you’ve painted your countertop, you might find that the ink or wet residue leaves a few blemishes behind.  And these blemishes do not come off of the paint surface easily.  Consider them stuck unless you want to scrape the paint off and reapply.  Given the strong smell of the paint, the fact that I’m replacing the countertops anyway, and my laziness (reason #3 is pretty persuasive), I’m not going to bother.


Scrach marks:  Maybe it’s because it’s the floor, but the scratch marks were far less noticeable on the bathroom linoleum.  It also handled the onslaught of dropped tools (taping knives, screwdrivers, etc) as I began tearing at the wallpapered walls and old miniblinds.

Paper residue:  Wallpaper removal is a messy, sticky, unpleasant task, and cleanup wasn’t really a priority if a small amount got stuck to the floor.  So that means the wet pieces of paper stuck to the painted surface in the same fashion as what I saw on the countertops.  Perhaps it’s because I was less worried about the surface, but I didn’t notice it as much.  Cleanup was just as difficult to get the little dried flecks of paper off of the floor as the countertops, but I guess I just didn’t care.  What wasn’t difficult to get up?  The blops (I use “blops” instead of blobs because that’s pretty much the sound it makes hitting the floor) of joint compound that was indiscriminately thrown about the room in an attempt to get a smooth finish on the wall.

My thoughts

I like the way the paint bonded better to the floor than the surface on the countertop., but that doesn’t necessarily mean that either option is really any better than a temporary fix for an eyesore that you eventually plan to replace.  I think that a lot of it has to do with the texture of the materials that they were sticking to; the countertops were a smoother, harder surface than the soft linoleum, which may have influenced the ability for the paint to fully stick without scraping off so easily from the floors (both were thoroughly cleaned with the same cleaning agents and the same roller/brush combo use to paint, so I don’t think it was an application issue).

As for the paper, I simply don’t think this product stands a chance against glue/paper residue when it comes to long-term use.  I mean, I absentmindedly sort bills, tear off can labels (ex: Campbell’s soup cans have recipes on the back, which I try to look at before throwing them out), and in general, just toss things onto the countertop without much concern.  The paint is meant to stick to even the most difficult of surfaces (laminate, melamine, etc), so it’s understandable that something like a can label doesn’t stand a chance for easy removal; once it’s stuck, it’s stuck for good.  Bonding ability is the reason I bought the paint, but is also unfortunately the reason that I wouldn’t recommend it to a friend because it can’t possibly distinguish between desirable surfaces to stick to and undesirable ones.

Granted, this experiment cost me $20, and I was glad that I did it.  But if this were the permanent solution for my counters, I think I’d be disappointed that retouching would be necessary, and so often for a high traffic area like the kitchen counter.  I still think this product is a good one if you are looking for a temporary change and just can’t stand to see those 80s floors anymore, but think twice about a one stop solution here.  Rustoleum sells a more expensive kit for painting countertops that I chose not to try, but is probably a more viable permanent solution if replacing really isn’t an option.

And of course, these opinions are based solely on my own counters and floors, so they may not even have the same results as other people might experience.  If you’ve used this paint yourself, feel free to weigh in.  What did you like about the results?  Did it hold up better for you than it did for me?  Did you notice a paper issue like I did?

2014 Update

After a couple of years, I finally replaced my kitchen counters with inexpensive butcher block, and I LOVE them! You can catch all of the details of the install here:

** I was not compensated in any way for using this product.  I just like trying out new things and saving my readers the uncertainty of trying out an unknown product.  Word of mouth is the sincerest form of advertisement, and you will get nothing but 100% honesty from products that I try.**

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    • says

      Regular cleaner, whatever I was using at the time. The paint would lighten in color when wet but darken again when dry.

  1. Joann says

    Perhaps polyurethane to seal the paint would have helped both countertops and floor. I’ve removed carpet and vinyl flooring from the cement slab of entire houses and painted the cement to look like marble tile. A neighbor copied, doing a brown stone look. I filled the holes from carpet tack strips with joint compound and rolled on several coats of water-based crystal CLEAR (it MUST be clear or it will ruin your project, and MinWax’s clear is not clear) polyurethane to protect the paint. Don’t like the look? Just paint over it, including painting over the polyurethane and then reapplying it when you get to that point. The only drawback is that the polyurethane is very slippery when wet so put throw rugs in the bathroom, in front of the kitchen sink, and inside the door on a rainy day. Let me know if anyone wants complete directions.

    • Glenda says

      I also pulled up my carpet and used industrial strength paint on my concrete floors and my kitchen linoleum and then put several coats of polyurethane approximately 8 years ago. I need to know how to prepare my linoleum to repaint over polyurethane. Although it has all held up really good except for three spots on the concrete which as peeled off.

      • says

        If I understand you correctly, then it should be fairly straightforward. Keep in mind that I haven’t done exactly what you describe to any of my own floors, but I’d imagine that it’s much the same as you would prepare to paint over a poly’d surface elsewhere: clean the surface thoroughly with a TSP/deglosser. Then, rough up the surface a bit with 220 grit sandpaper. The whole point of both of those things would be to help the new paint grab a solid hold on the existing surface. Caulk any damaged areas, then prime with normal latex primer (I like Zinsser). Then paint with porch & floor paint.

    • Tarah says

      Could you please share your process of using polyurethane on the countertops? I have no choice right now BUT to paint my laminate countertops. Just bought a new place & the remodel $$ has to go elsewhere for now. Thank u!

  2. Bill M says

    Too early in the morning to be funny… I’m about to paint kitchen counters. Don’t have it in me to take on new counters after the floor tile job from hell.

    I’m planning on using the same paint but then covering with poly basketball court finish. It’s a super tough, clear final coat.

    Thanks for your info…

    Bill M
    Vero Beach FL

  3. says

    My tenant was very creative with projects but one failed.
    She used rustoleum textured spray paint on the kitchen counter tops.
    Cute idea but …. I guess she did not seal the paint cause all around the sink the spray paint has peeled off.
    How do I remove all of the textured spray paint without ruining my countertop in the process?

  4. aqsa says

    I want to paint my kitchen countertop. The previous owners to this 1980s home had painted it blue a long time ago and its scratched up as well as chipped and come off near the sink and other spots. It looks awful and makes my kitchen look messy. I was wondering if I could just repaint over it? Will it look fine or should I do something with where its all come off, chipped and scratched? I can’t seam to find much on repainting the countertops if paint is coming off scratched or chipped. Hope to hear from you soon. :)

    • says

      I didn’t deal with the same issue personally, but anything that is peeling is separating from the surface, so you’re not going to be able to fix that by painting over it. The best you can do is to sand it properly so that you can get off all of the chipping and flaking as much as possible, then probably seal it (not sure what sealer you should use, but you can ask your local hardware store for product suggestions). Then, the surface would be more likely to take on new paint.

  5. Bryan says

    I realize this is a futile post since you already renovated your counters. The similar yet different product, Counter Transformations, also from Rustoleum, includes a clear coat sealant. I think that would have been a better product to go with.

    Also design wise, as an interior designer, I would have suggested leaving the faux wood top and paint the cabinets light. You have nice appliances and sink, the old wood fronts make them look out of place.

    • says

      True, it probably would have given better results, but back in 2009 when I did this, I hadn’t seen anyone try this product out yet, so it was well worth the gamble. I mentioned it in the post, but the product you’re talking about costs 1250% more. This was a $20 product, while the Counter Tranformations kit is around $250. For that kind of money, I’d rather save it and spend it later on the better counter replacement. I pretty much wound up doing the dark butcher block/light cabinet look once I finally got the budget to replace, and it looks SO much better than this little experiment ever did!

  6. Tiffany says

    Hi! We used the exact same product on our kitchen counters a few years ago. We bought a cute little fixer upper that had purple countertops. PURPLE! What were they thinking?! Anyways, we experienced the same little nicks, scratches, and paper/water spots as you did. It was better than purple counters and definitely met the need until we were ready to replace them. It also worked well in the half bath that my kids used. It seemed to hold up better in there…perhaps because not much ever sat on the counters? It’s definitely a decent option for a temporary fix. Enjoyed your review!

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