Chalk Paint Over Glass Surfaces: How-To (With Images)

Glass has a non-porous and slick surface; this makes it hard for paint to penetrate and stick. So, can you use chalk paint on glass surfaces?

You can use chalk paint for glass surfaces. However, you must clean the glass with a degrease to remove stains before applying chalk paint. Also, you must use chalk paint designed for glass surfaces. 

Chalk paint has impressive bonding qualities and will stick to almost any surface. However, the surface must be clean and sometimes sanded before applying chalk paint.

Chalk Paint Sticks To Glass Surfaces

Chalk paint sticks to glass surfaces if the glass surface is clean. However, you must use chalk paint designed for glass surfaces. That’s because this type of chalk paint will stick to glass perfectly. 

Since chalk paint is water-based, the paint will stick to any surface. In addition, water-based paints have impressive bonding qualities, dry fast, and are easy to apply.

However, if the glass is already painted or sealed, you must remove the paint before applying chalk paint. That’s because chalk paint can’t stick to oil-based paints or sealers. 

Optionally, you can wet sand the glass to improve the adhesion between the glass and chalk paint. Sanding will create tiny ridges that the chalk paint can penetrate into.  

Related Read: Can You Use Chalk Paint on Plastic?

How To Apply Chalk Paint On Glass?

Applying chalk paint on glass is easy, but you must prep the glass to get good results. 

Here are the tools you need:

  • A Bottle Of Rubbing Alcohol Or Isopropyl
  • Paper Towel
  • A Sealant Or Clear Topcoat
  • A Paintbrush (preferably a small paintbrush)
  • Chalk Paint
  • Water
  • Fine-Grit Sandpaper Or Sanding Block

1. Wipe The Glass Surface With Rubbing Alcohol

Wipe The Glass Surface With Rubbing Alcohol

First, clean the glass surface with rubbing alcohol. Rubbing alcohol is a mild solvent that removes tough stains and grease from glass surfaces. You can use a degrease as an alternative to rubbing alcohol.

If you don’t clean the glass surface, the dirt and dust will prevent chalk paint from adhering properly. So, you must clean and remove dirt from the glass surface before applying chalk paint. 

To clean a glass surface:

  1. Pour rubbing alcohol or degreaser into a clean rag.
  2. Use the dampened rag to wipe the glass surface. 
  3. Wait a few minutes (5-10).
  4. Use warm soapy water to remove the rubbing alcohol residue. 

If you don’t remove the rubbing alcohol residue, the chalk paint won’t stick. That’s because rubbing alcohol is a natural paint remover and won’t allow the new chalk paint coating to adhere to the glass surface. 

2. Wet Sand (Optional)

Sand Lightly To Give A Distressed Finish

Once the glass is clean, you can wet sand it. Sanding glass is optional, but it helps chalk paint stick better. Sanding creates small ridges (or scratches) on the glass surface that the chalk paint can penetrate into. 

To wet sand glass, use fine-grit sandpaper. The fine-grit sandpaper won’t damage the glass surface; instead, it will smooth it out for paint. Don’t use coarse or rough sandpaper over a glass surface, as you can damage it.

After you sand the glass, clean it with warm water and let it dry. 

3. Apply Chalk Paint

Apply Thin Coats Of Chalk Paint On The Glass

Once the glass surface is dry, you can apply chalk paint. You can use a sprayer or paintbrush to apply chalk paint on glass. A sprayer will provide a better finish quality and help the chalk paint stick better to glass. However, a paintbrush allows you to apply thin coats without paint wastage. 

To apply chalk paint on glass:

  1. Apply 3-4 coats of chalk paint. 
  2. Wait until one coat dries before applying the next one.
  3. Optionally, you can sand between coats of chalk paint

Chalk paint dries fast since it’s water-based. It takes chalk paint 30 minutes to dry between coats. 

4. Seal The Chalk Paint If Needed

Seal The Chalk Paint If Needed

After the chalk paint dries on the glass, you can seal it. A sealer, such as polyurethane, will protect the chalk paint (and glass) from moisture, water, and scratches. You can use water-based polyurethane for indoor glass surfaces. For outdoor glass surfaces, use exterior polyurethane as a sealer. 

To seal chalk paint on glass, apply 3-4 coats of sealant. Wait until one coat of sealer dries before applying the next one. Optionally, you can sand between coats of sealer (except for the final coat).

For indoor glass surfaces, sealing chalk paint is optional. That’s because indoor glass surfaces aren’t exposed to water or moisture.

But, for outdoor glass surfaces, you must seal chalk paint as they are exposed to moisture and water. Chalk paint is water-based, and as such, isn’t resistant to moisture, water, or scratches. If the thin finish of chalk paint is exposed to constant water, it will get washed off. 

Related Read: Does Chalk Paint Stick To Metal?

Chalk Paint Dry Time on Glass

It takes chalk paint 30 minutes to dry between coats on glass. However, it takes chalk paint 2 hours to fully cure on glass. Chalk paint dries fast because it uses water as its solvent, and water evaporates fast. Also, the chalk paint has a thin flow, and the thinner the paint flow is, the faster the paint dries. 

Also, since glass is non-porous, chalk paint won’t penetrate the surface and will start to dry immediately. This means chalk paint will dry faster on glass than on any other surface. That’s because chalk paint starts to evaporate immediately after you apply it. 

The dry time of chalk paint depends on the room temperature, humidity, and the number of coats applied. For example, chalk paint takes longer to dry if the humidity levels are high. Also, the more coats of chalk paint you apply, the longer it takes to dry.

Related Read: How To Paint Over Chalk Paint?

Applying Chalk Paint on a Mirror

You can apply chalk paint to a mirror surface. That’s because chalk paint has impressive bonding qualities. However, you must use chalk paint designed for glass surfaces to paint mirrors. 

To apply chalk paint on a mirror:

  1. Use a synthetic or natural paintbrush. 
  2. Apply 2-3 light coats of chalk paint.
  3. Don’t apply too much force while applying the paint. 
  4. Let the paint dry. 

Chalk Paint Won’t Stick If:

Chalk paint won’t stick to a glass surface if the glass surface is dirty or painted. Dirt and dust prevent the chalk paint from adhering to the glass surface. 

Also, if the glass surface is painted or sealed with oil-based paint, chalk paint won’t stick to it. That’s because oil-based paints have a glossy finish that repels moisture, including paint. So, if you apply chalk paint over a painted glass, the paint will slide off the glass and won’t penetrate or stick. 

The room temperature must be 50-85 degrees (F) for chalk paint to stick to glass. If the temperature is lower, the chalk paint won’t dry and will remain tacky for several days. Also, if the humidity levels are higher than 50%, chalk paint won’t stick to a glass surface. 

Here’s what to do if chalk paint turns tacky over glass surfaces:

  1. Wait until the chalk paint dries. 
  2. Sand off the bumps in the finish. 
  3. Apply a new coat of chalk paint. 

If the chalk paint stays tacky for several days:

  1. Damp a clean rag into rubbing alcohol.
  2. Use the dampened rag to clean/remove the tacky chalk paint.
  3. Re-apply chalk paint. 

Final Words

You can apply chalk paint on glass, but you must prep (clean) the glass before applying chalk paint. Also, you must use chalk paint designed for glass. 

Leave a Comment