Painting over a Tile Backsplash – Part 2

I’ve been out, about, sick, baby-showering… but I’m back!

With my backsplash…

Most of the traffic on this blog has come through my first post about painting over my backsplash.  This means that there are others like me out there that want a cheap, easy solution to an ugly backsplash.

Seriously, a quart of primer, a quart of paint, some brushes and some tape is all you need!  Really, you have nothing to lose! If you paint over it, and don’t like it, chances are it still looks better than what you started with!  Then you can move on to the next paint color, or buck-up and invest in a more expensive, permanent solution.

Here is exactly what I did, in as much detail as I can remember:


  • 1 qt. Zinsser Bullseye 1-2-3 Primer for all surfaces
  • 1 qt. BEHR Premium Plus Ultra (paint/primer in one) in SnowFall (I used the paint/primer in one only because this is what I was using on my walls.)
  • 1 medium paintbrush
  • Taping off supplies (paper, tape, plastic, ur choice)
  1. Begin with a clean backsplash.  Make sure all the food stains are removed.  Dish detergent works great! Just make sure the surface has dried completely before painting.
  2. Tape off the countertops. This will ensure a clean edge between the backsplash and countertop.
  3. Cover countertops with paper or plastic.
  4. Cover entire backsplash with one coat of primer. (My backsplash had small, 2×2″ tiles.  That made for a lot of grout that needed to be painted.  I started with a smooth roller and tried to roll all of  it.  But the paint was not reaching into the grout lines. In the end, I just did it all by hand with a brush.)
  5. Let primer dry entirely. (see primer instructions)
  6. Apply paint over the primer.
  7. Go back and survey the surface closely for any drip marks. Brush lightly over them to ensure a smooth final finish.
  8. Let paint dry.
  9. Stand back, admire your work, and all the cash still in your wallet!
Easy peasy!  and if you have any inkling of artistic DNA, you can take this project and fly with it!  Imagine faux Spanish tiles, or a cool retro pattern, or maybe some whimsical inspiring prose…
Here are some more BEFORE/AFTER pictures of my project.  It doesn’t quite translate in the pictures as the dramatic change that it is in person. Once the kitchen is completely redone (hopefully in my lifetime), I hope to take better, more dramatic pictures.


AFTER - note the handles have also been modernized





  1. I definitely can see the change. MUCH Better!! And great cabinet handles.

    • Thanks! I’m glad the change came across in the pics. Now to decorate!

  2. maria said:

    i didnt know you can paint tiles!!!!!! cool! Lyg you are definitely the one i will go to will all my remodeling questions.

    • I wouldn’t paint a tile table, or a floor, but definitely a low traffic area like a backsplash. It cleans up well too, just wipe with a wet rag!

  3. Candy said:

    Hi, it’s amazing to see u can use BEHR Premium Plus Ultra on tile n grout! Do u know if it’s ok to use it for bath shower grout? Not painting tiles, just grout? Ur site is so helpful :) thank you.

  4. Candy said:

    Hi, it’s amazing to see u can use BEHR Premium Plus Ultra on tile n grout! Do u know if it’s ok to use it for bath shower grout? Not painting tiles, just grout? Ur site is so helpful :) thank you.

    • Well, I’ve only had the paint on for 9 months, and it’s starting to chip off the tile :( BUT it’s doing great on the grout! I should’ve roughed up the tile with sandpaper a little before I painted. But since the grout is already rough, it really took the paint well. I’m not sure how it would work in a really wet environment though.

  5. Rebekah said:

    I’ve been SEARCHING for pictures of painted tile all day….THANK YOU!! I think I can do this! Goodbye to my shiny granny bathroom tiles (that are in the kitchen!).

    • my only word of caution is to sand your tiles first… It’s been about a year since i’ve painted them, and unfortunately, the paint is starting to chip off :(

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