Can You Paint Over Eggshell Paint? (With Different Paints)

Eggshell paint is a low gloss finish commonly used on interior walls and furniture. But oftentimes, DIYers wonder if they can paint over eggshell paint with other paints. Here is the answer to that.

You can paint over eggshell paint with other paints. But you need to properly sand the eggshell paint with fine-grit sandpaper before painting over it.

This is because eggshell paint has some sheen and gloss in the formula. So if you paint over eggshell paint directly, the gloss on the eggshell finish will repel the new paint causing it to fall off eventually.

Sanding helps to remove the gloss on the eggshell paint so the new paint can stick. The eggshell paint should also be smooth, clean, and dry for the paint to stick.

Does Paint Stick To Eggshell Paint?

Paints don’t stick to eggshell paint properly. This is because of the presence of gloss in the eggshell paint. To make paints stick to eggshell paint, you’ll have to either strip or sand the eggshell paint. Sanding and striping help to remove the glossy sheen in the eggshell paint so the new paint can stick better to a textured surface.

Though eggshell paint is not a high-gloss finish, the paint still has more sheen than flat, milk, and matte paint. The gloss in eggshell paint forms the top layer when the paint dries. This glossy and hard top layer makes it very difficult for other types of paints to penetrate or stick to the eggshell paint properly.

Putting other types of paint on eggshell paint directly often results in the new paint peeling off within a few weeks. However, you should know that some types of paints stick to eggshell paint. These are topical paints and stains commonly referred to as sealants.

They include polyurethane, gel stain, and some varnishes. To make other types of paints stick to eggshell paint, you’ll have to either sand or strip the eggshell paint.

You should also know that paints will not stick to eggshell paint if the paint is damaged, wet, or chipped. Also, if the eggshell paint was sealed with a top coat or sealant, new paint will not stick.

Is Eggshell Paint Easy To Paint Over?

Eggshell paint is easy to paint over but only if you follow the right steps. To paint over eggshell paint, you’ll need to clean, sand, and in some cases prime the eggshell paint before the new paint is applied.

This is to allow the new paint to stick well to the existing eggshell paint. As long as you do all these, the task will be easy but can be time-consuming.

You should know that eggshell paint can be difficult to paint over if the eggshell paint was sealed. Since sealants are naturally water-resistant and hard, it will be impossible for paints to stick without removing the sealant first. It’s also difficult to remove sealants because you’ll need to use a paint-removing solvent or a chemical-based paint stripper.

Painting over damaged or wet eggshell paint will also be a bit difficult because you’ll have to repair the eggshell paint first before applying the paint. But can you paint over eggshell paint without sanding or priming? Let’s find out.

Can You Paint Over Eggshell Paint Without Sanding or Priming?

Can You Paint Over Eggshell Paint Without Sanding or Priming?

You shouldn’t paint over eggshell paint without sanding. This is because eggshell paint has gloss in its formula that has to be sanded off to allow the new paint to stick. If you don’t sand, the new paint will not stick properly to the eggshell paint.

Priming on the other hand isn’t necessary when you want to paint over eggshell paint. Priming is only important if you want to go from a dark-colored eggshell paint to a light-colored new paint. Or, if the eggshell paint is damaged or stained.

Usually, when you want to paint over existing paint, you’ll be required to sand and prime to allow the new paint to stick to the existing paint. However, you don’t need to prime eggshell paint except the paint is not in a good condition.

Here are scenarios where you have to prime eggshell paint before painting over it:

  • If the eggshell paint is damaged, you need to cover it with a primer coating so the new paint can dry smoothly
  • If the eggshell paint is stained, you need a stain-blocking primer
  • If the eggshell paint is wet, you need a moisture-resistant primer
  • If you want to change from dark eggshell paint to a light paint, you need a primer coating to prevent the dark eggshell paint from showing through the new light paint.
  • If the eggshell paint is filthy, you need a primer coating over it.

You should remember that though priming isn’t always necessary when painting over eggshell paint, sanding is not optional. To allow new paint to stick well to eggshell paint, sand the eggshell first with a fine-grit sandpaper.

Now, let’s check out how to paint over eggshell paint easily.

How To Paint Over Eggshell Paint?

Painting over eggshell paint can be difficult especially if you don’t follow the right steps. Not to worry though, this guide will show you how to do this in 5 simple steps. But first, we’ll need a few tools and supplies:

  • Sandpaper
  • Clean rags
  • Paint primer
  • A gallon of paint
  • Rubbing alcohol or TSD
  • A paint bucket
  • Lacquer thinner

1. Prep The Eggshell Paint

Prep The Eggshell Paint

The first step is to prep the eggshell paint. This involves cleaning, degreasing, and wiping the paint before painting over it. If the eggshell paint is filthy, then the new paint will not stick to it because the filth will prevent proper paint adhesion between the eggshell paint and the new paint coating.

To clean the eggshell paint, use a clean rag and a solvent. You can use rubbing alcohol or a degreaser (like TSD) for this.

You should pour some solvent on a rag and use the damp rag to wipe off stains and grease from the eggshell paint. After cleaning the eggshell paint, ensure to leave it to dry for a few hours before going on with the task.

2. Sand The Eggshell Paint

Sand The Eggshell Paint

The next step is to sand the eggshell paint. This step is to remove the glossy top layer on the eggshell paint. To do this, you should sand the eggshell paint with fine-grit sandpaper. 220-grit works fine.

But before you sand, you need to know if the eggshell paint was sealed. If the paint was sealed, you’ll need to first remove the sealant before sanding it with a fine-grit sandpaper.

To know if the paint was sealed, flash a bright light on the eggshell finish. If the finish is very shiny or reflective, then the eggshell paint was most likely sealed. But if the eggshell paint is not very reflective or it appears a bit dull, then the eggshell paint wasn’t sealed.

To remove the sealant, you can use a chemical-based paint stripper or lacquer thinner. When you have removed the gloss, you can now sand the eggshell paint.

After sanding, there will be dust nibs and paint particles on the surface. You need to wipe these off so they don’t cause bumps and pimples in the new paint. You can do this using a clean rag or a soft brush.

3. Prime The Eggshell Paint

Prime The Eggshell Paint

This step is optional. If the paint is damaged, stained, wet, or chipping off, you need to apply a stain-blocking primer over the eggshell paint before painting over it. Shellac-based primers work well to prevent moisture and stains from affecting the new paint.

Also, if you repaired the eggshell paint, a coat of primer will be needed. You only need a coat of primer to allow the new paint to dry smoothly and properly. You can apply the primer using a paintbrush.

4. Apply The New Paint

Apply The New Paint

When the primer coating is dry, you can apply the new paint over it. You can paint over eggshell paint using a paintbrush or a paint sprayer.

You should ensure that the paint you picked can be used over eggshell paint. Water-based paints are known to work well over properly-sanded eggshell paint. You should allow each coat to dry for at least 30 minutes before a recoat.

When the new paint is dry, you can seal it using polyurethane, lacquer, or varnish. All of these sealants will make the new paint last longer.

Types of Paint You Can Apply Over Eggshell Paint?

Types of Paint You Can Apply Over Eggshell Paint

Next, let’s check out some common paint types and see if they can be used over eggshell paint.

Flat Paint

You can’t use flat paint over eggshell paint directly due to the presence of gloss in the eggshell paint. The only way to put flat paint over eggshell paint is to sand or strip the eggshell paint first to remove the gloss in the paint.

The gloss in the eggshell paint is moisture-resistant and slick meaning that flat paints can’t stick properly. Also, the gloss is oil-based and flat paints are water-based.

Since water-based paints aren’t compatible with oils, flat paints will also not be compatible with the eggshell paint unless you sand or strip the eggshell paint first.

Chalk Paint

You can use chalk paint over eggshell paint but only if you sand the eggshell paint first. The good news with chalk paints is that the paint naturally has impressive adhesive qualities so you wouldn’t need to do much sanding.

You just have to graze some parts on the eggshell paint so the chalk paint can bite into it. However, you should know that chalk paints are thick and they dry fast. Also, chalk paints don’t offer great protection. So, you’ll need to seal the chalk over the eggshell paint.

Semi-Gloss Paint

Semi-gloss paint will not stick very well to eggshell paint except you sand the eggshell paint first. This is because semi-gloss paints only stick to a textured surface and eggshell paint is not textured.

So sanding is very important. You should also know that you can only apply one coat of semi-gloss paint directly. To apply successive coats of semi-gloss paints, you’ll have to sand between coats.

Satin Paint

Satin paint is a semi-gloss finish. This means that it will not stick if used directly over eggshell paint. To make satin paint stick to eggshell paint, you need to remove the glossy sheen on the eggshell paint first.

Depending on the type of semi-gloss paint that you want to apply, you might also need a primer paint coating on the eggshell paint.

High-Gloss Paint

You can use high-gloss paint over eggshell paint but it’s best to strip the eggshell paint first. This is because high-gloss paints are very reflective and known to reveal the texture of the surface underneath. So any imperfection in the eggshell paint will most likely be revealed when the high-gloss paint dries.

Asides from this, it’s a bit time-consuming and difficult to prep eggshell paint for high gloss. To do this, you’ll need to clean, degrease, sand, and even prime the eggshell paint. If you think of the workload, it’s just better to apply the high-gloss finish alone.

Wax

Wax can be applied over eggshell paint. However, you should know that wax can be very thick and selective when it comes to surfaces. So it’s best to test out the wax on a part of the eggshell paint first before applying it over the whole surface.

Oil-based Paint

Oil-based paints can go over eggshell paint but you’ll have to sand the eggshell paint first. That’s because oil-based paints can’t stay over a slick or glossy surface like that of eggshell paint.

You also need to ensure that the eggshell finish is grease-free before applying oil-based paint over it because oil-based paints don’t do well on grease or a filthy surface.

Water-based Paint

Water-based paints can be used over eggshell paints. Most painters prefer to use water-based paints over eggshell paints. This is because water-based paints are easy to apply, they dry fast, and they have brighter colors. This means that water-based paints will hide the imperfections in the eggshell paint well.

However, you should know that water-based paints don’t offer very good protection so you might need to seal the water-based paint if it will be used in a high-traffic area.

Final Words

In summary, you can paint over eggshell paint easily. You just need to pick the right paint to use and follow the right steps. Always ensure to sand the eggshell paint before painting over it.

This will make the paint stick better to the eggshell paint. Finally, ensure to seal the finish if the paint you applied over the eggshell paint doesn’t offer good protection.

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