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Ok, so the product isn’t technically meant to stick to vinyl or linoleum floors, but over the weekend, I decided that I was so sick of staring at the hideous floor in my primary bathroom that I simply couldn’t take it anymore. I needed a quick fix.
Since I had the paint around anyway for my plans to paint the laminate countertops in both the primary and guest bathrooms (to complete the cabinet painting project I started two weeks ago), I figured hey, why stop there?
You’ve heard me talk about the products before when I painted my kitchen’s laminate countertops last month, but Rustoleum makes two completely different countertop painting “kits” – one is an actual kit which contains about sixteen different components to turn a laminate countertop into a painted laminate countertop with flecks of some kind of material on top – I am guessing, but it’s probably confetti. And the kit’s cost (roughly $250) seems to be just short of what it would cost to actually replace the countertop with butcher block from IKEA. In other words, I’d rather spend my two hundred plus bones on an actual new counter rather than just slop paint on the old one and toss confetti on top. The alternative, also made by Rustoleum, is a simple $20 can of paint that is supposed to stick to laminate and I’ve already tested it out in my kitchen. So far, it seems to be bonding pretty well, so I spent another twenty bucks on a new color to try out in the bathroom (the original gray was a little too blue, so I wanted to test out a muddier, darker color in the bathrooms in hopes it would be a more tolerable color during the months I’ll be saving up for full countertop replacement).
Let’s face it; bathrooms are places where you clean yourself, but when it comes to cleaning the room itself, it’s nothing short of total ick. But, it must be done. So, after getting down on my hands and knees and scrubbing behind a thirty-year-old toilet (one that I plan to replace ultimately during the big bathroom reno TBD), I decided it was the perfect time to test out the paint’s abilities on the floor. If the paint sticks to laminate, I figured it might have a similar bonding experience with the newly cleaned, albeit hideous vinyl/linoleum.
When it comes to painted surfaces, you want the paint and the surface to bond like gum to hot asphalt. So, after giving the floor a good general cleaning, I did a once-over with TSP substitute (which is what I’d recommend you do before painting any surface – it degreases and deglosses to help the paint stick better, and doesn’t require pre-rinsing before applying paint).
Next up was putting painter’s tape where I didn’t want the paint to stick, such as on the bedroom carpet transition strip and around the ol’ toilet. Even though all of it (minus the carpet) is going to be replaced later this year (I hope), I didn’t want it looking too sloppy in the interim.
Next, it was time to don the safety gear and prep for paint application. And while I usually don’t bother when it comes to the usual low-VOC latex (I use BEHR for just about everything), this stuff is super strong-smelling and requires both gloves and a breathing mask. I had a simple breathing mask on hand, but if I had to do it over again, I recommend something a little heavier such as a charcoal filtered mask. Seriously folks, these fumes aren’t kidding around (and of course be sure to protect yourself as much as possible when handling any kind of harmful chemicals).
The paint separates rather easliy in the can, so stirring the paint prior to application is key. It only takes a few minutes to get a smooth color consistency, so taking the extra time here will save you a lot of re-application time (and the added frustration) later.
Whether you choose a foam brush or foam roller (I used both for cutting in and the larger areas), you want a smooth finish and a thick application (so you don’t have to do a second coat and wait a week to start using the bathroom again). And remember to start in the corner furthest away from the door and work your way out of the room! I have the luxury (ironic?) of having a small enough bathroom that I didn’t have to worry too much about trapping myself in, but take your time when planning your brush strokes. And get everything you need out of the room before you ever dip the brush into the can – trust me, it’s much easier to get to your toothpaste when you don’t have to do the splits at cabinet level.
Once the last of the floor was covered, I made sure the window was open and closed the bathroom door. Since it’s right next to the primary bedroom (where we sleep of course), I wanted to make sure that the night would be warm enough to leave the windows open and let the paint properly dry without destroying our brain cells as we slept. The open windows aired out the fumes rapidly and we were able to sleep normally. We still had to shower and get ready for bed in the guest bathroom, which I didn’t realize until now how much it bothered Scott – I guess he has a thing for the extra large showerhead we have in the primary and hates the low-flow one in the guest room.
In my opinion, three days of guest bathroom use is a small price to pay for a much-improved floor. While the honeycomb pattern is still visible due the texture (see above), I am contemplating adding a pattern like chevron stripes or a stencil print just for funsies.
The photos in these pics are still as the paint was wet (and as usual, at night), but I’ll take more later this week to show you the finished look and sheen. For only $20 though, this product is quickly climbing the charts as one of my faves. If only it weren’t so toxic, I’d use it for just about everything.