How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets Without Sanding

Greetings! Are you tired of the dull and outdated look of your kitchen cabinets? Do you want to give them a fresh new look without going through the hassle of sanding? Well, you’re in luck! In this article, we will share with you an easy and effective method to paint your kitchen cabinets without sanding. Whether you’re a DIY enthusiast or just someone looking to spruce up their kitchen, this technique will save you time and effort while achieving beautiful results. So, let’s dive in and transform your kitchen cabinets into stunning focal points of your home!

Why Avoid Sanding?

When it comes to updating the look of your kitchen cabinets, sanding may seem like an inevitable and necessary step. However, sanding can be messy, time-consuming, and may even damage the cabinets if not done properly. Luckily, there are alternative methods that allow you to achieve a smooth and professional-looking finish without the hassle of sanding.


Before diving into the painting process, it’s crucial to prepare your kitchen cabinets properly. This step ensures the longevity and durability of the paint job.

The first essential step is to remove all hardware such as knobs and handles from the cabinets. This will make the painting process much easier and give a cleaner finish. Additionally, make sure to clean the cabinets thoroughly to remove any grease or dirt buildup. A mixture of warm water and a mild detergent can be used to wipe down the surfaces.

Next, you want to give your cabinets a light sanding with a fine-grit sandpaper. While sanding may not be completely avoided, this step helps roughen up the surface slightly, allowing the paint to adhere better. However, unlike traditional sanding, a light sanding is enough.

After sanding, carefully wipe away any dust with a clean cloth or tack cloth. This will ensure that the paint adheres smoothly and does not have particles trapped beneath.

Choosing the Right Paint

Selecting the right paint is crucial to achieve professional-looking results and ensure durability. For kitchen cabinets, it is important to choose a paint that is specifically formulated for high-traffic areas and is easy to clean. Acrylic or latex paints with a semi-gloss or satin finish are ideal choices as they are durable and resistant to grease and stains.

Furthermore, consider using a primer before applying the paint. A primer helps to create a smooth surface, increase adhesion, and prevent the old cabinet color from bleeding through. Look for a primer that is compatible with your chosen paint type.

Painting Process

Now that your cabinets are properly prepared, it’s time to start painting. Here are the steps to follow:

1. Protect Your Surroundings: Use drop cloths or plastic sheets to cover any nearby surfaces, floors, or appliances to avoid accidental paint splatters.

2. Start with the Inner Surfaces: Begin by painting the inner surfaces of the cabinets first. Use a small brush or a foam roller for better control and even coverage.

3. Move to the Outer Surfaces: Once the inner surfaces are dry, move on to the outer surfaces. Use long, smooth brush strokes or a foam roller to apply the paint evenly. Apply multiple thin coats for better coverage rather than a single thick coat.

4. Allow Sufficient Drying Time: Follow the paint manufacturer’s instructions regarding drying time between coats. Make sure to let each coat dry completely before moving on to the next to avoid any smudging or dragging of the paint.

5. Reattach Hardware: After the final coat has dried, reattach the hardware to the cabinets. This will add the finishing touches to your freshly painted kitchen cabinets.

Additional Tips and Tricks

– If you encounter any drips or uneven areas, lightly sand them with a fine-grit sandpaper and touch up with paint.

– Consider applying a clear protective topcoat for added durability and to protect the paint from wear and tear.

– Take your time and be patient throughout the process. Rushing can lead to mistakes and an unsatisfactory outcome.

By following these step-by-step instructions and incorporating the tips mentioned above, you can successfully paint your kitchen cabinets without sanding. Remember, preparation and choosing the right paint are key to achieving a professional and long-lasting finish. So roll up your sleeves, gather your materials, and transform your kitchen with a fresh new look!


When it comes to painting kitchen cabinets without sanding, proper preparation is key to achieving a professional-looking finish. Here are the steps you need to follow to prepare your cabinets:

Gather the Necessary Supplies

Before you begin the painting process, it’s important to gather all the necessary supplies. Having everything prepared beforehand will ensure a smoother and more efficient painting experience. Here’s a list of the supplies you will need:

  • Paint: Choose a high-quality paint specifically designed for kitchen cabinets.
  • Primer: Use a primer that is compatible with the type of paint you have chosen.
  • Brushes: Invest in high-quality brushes for a better application and smoother finish. Different sizes may be required for different parts of the cabinets.
  • Rollers: Rollers can be useful for larger flat surfaces, such as cabinet doors.
  • Painter’s tape: Use painter’s tape to protect areas you don’t want to paint, such as hinges or glass inserts.
  • Drop cloths: Cover the surrounding areas with drop cloths to protect them from paint splatters.
  • Cleaning materials: Gather cleaning materials such as mild detergent, water, and a sponge or cloth to thoroughly clean the cabinets.

Remove Cabinet Hardware and Clean

Before you can start painting, you’ll need to remove all cabinet hardware, such as handles and knobs. This will make it easier to paint the cabinets evenly and ensure a professional finish. Use a screwdriver to remove the hardware and keep them aside in a safe place.

Once the hardware is removed, it’s time to give the cabinets a thorough cleaning. This step is crucial to remove any grease, grime, or dust that may interfere with the adhesion of the paint. Mix a mild detergent with water and use a sponge or cloth to clean the cabinets, paying extra attention to areas with built-up residue. Rinse with clean water and allow the cabinets to dry completely before proceeding to the next step.

Protect Surrounding Areas

To avoid any accidental paint splatter, it is important to protect the surrounding areas of your kitchen. This includes countertops, flooring, and appliances. Use drop cloths or plastic sheets to cover these surfaces and secure them in place with tape or clips. This will prevent any paint from accidentally ruining these areas, making the cleanup process much easier afterward.

By following these preparation steps, you will create a clean and suitable surface for painting your kitchen cabinets without the need for sanding.


When it comes to painting kitchen cabinets without sanding, one of the crucial steps is priming. This prepares the surface for the paint and ensures a long-lasting finish. Here are some tips on priming your kitchen cabinets without sanding:

Choose the Right Primer

To achieve the best results, it’s essential to select a high-quality primer specifically designed for painting kitchen cabinets. This is important because not all primers are created equal. Look for a primer that is suitable for the material of your cabinets, such as wood, laminate, or metal. A good primer will promote adhesion and create a smooth surface for the paint to adhere to.

Apply the Primer

Once you have chosen the right primer for your kitchen cabinets, it’s time to apply it. You can use a brush or roller to apply an even coat of primer to all surfaces of the cabinets. Make sure to cover the entire area, including the corners and edges. It’s crucial to apply the primer evenly to avoid any uneven texture or streaks in the final paint job. After applying the primer, allow it to dry completely according to the manufacturer’s instructions. This drying time is necessary to ensure the primer’s full effectiveness.

Sand-Free Alternatives

If the idea of sanding your cabinets is not appealing to you, there are sand-free alternatives available. These alternatives can help create a suitable surface for the primer and paint without the need for traditional sanding. Two popular options are deglosser and liquid sandpaper.

A deglosser is a liquid solution that removes the glossy finish from the cabinet surface and prepares it for priming. It works by softening the existing finish, making it easier for the primer to adhere. Simply apply the deglosser according to the manufacturer’s instructions, and then proceed with the priming step.

Liquid sandpaper, on the other hand, is a chemical solution that works similarly to traditional sanding. It roughens up the surface of the cabinets, creating a better bond for the primer and paint. Apply the liquid sandpaper with a cloth or sponge, following the directions on the product label, and allow it to dry before proceeding with priming.

Both deglosser and liquid sandpaper are great alternatives to sanding, as they provide a convenient and effective way of prepping the cabinets without the mess and effort of sanding.

By following these steps and using sand-free alternatives like deglosser or liquid sandpaper, you can successfully prime your kitchen cabinets without the need for traditional sanding. This method will save you time and effort while still achieving a professional-looking paint job.


When it comes to painting kitchen cabinets without sanding, there are several steps you need to follow to ensure a successful outcome. In this section, we will dive deeper into the painting process and provide you with some useful tips and tricks.

Choose the Right Paint

Before you begin painting, it is essential to choose the right paint for your kitchen cabinets. Look for a high-quality paint that is specifically formulated for this purpose. You want a paint that is durable, washable, and non-yellowing to ensure your cabinets look great for years to come.

When selecting the paint color, consider the overall design and color scheme of your kitchen. Opt for a hue that complements your countertops, backsplash, and other elements in the room. You can also take this opportunity to give your kitchen a fresh and updated look by choosing a new color that matches your style.

Apply the Paint

Once you have chosen the right paint, it’s time to apply it to your kitchen cabinets. Start by removing all the cabinet doors and hardware, including handles and hinges. This will make it easier to paint and ensure a smoother finish.

Using a paintbrush or roller, apply an even coat of paint to all the surfaces of your kitchen cabinets. Make sure to cover every inch, including the front, sides, and edges. If your cabinets have a wood grain, follow its direction when painting for a seamless and professional result.

When applying the paint, be mindful of drips and streaks. Take your time to ensure a smooth and consistent coverage. If necessary, you can apply multiple coats of paint for a more opaque and vibrant finish. However, make sure to let each coat dry completely before adding another layer. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding drying times.

Finishing Touches

Once the paint has dried completely, it’s time to add the finishing touches to your freshly painted kitchen cabinets. Reattach the cabinet hardware, making sure everything is secure and in the right place. This includes handles, hinges, and any other decorative elements.

Take a moment to step back and admire your work. Your kitchen cabinets should now have a beautiful new color and a fresh look. However, it’s crucial to inspect the cabinets for any areas that require touch-ups. Use a small paintbrush or a sponge to fix any imperfections or uneven spots.

Additionally, tidy up any edges or corners where paint may have dripped or smeared during the painting process. A damp cloth or sponge should do the trick. Pay attention to details and take the time to achieve a clean and polished finish.

With your kitchen cabinets now painted, you can enjoy the transformation they bring to your space. Not only will they look brand new, but they will also enhance the overall aesthetic of your kitchen. So sit back, relax, and revel in the beauty of your newly painted cabinets!

Clean-up and Maintenance

Properly Dispose of Materials

When you’re finished painting your kitchen cabinets without sanding, it’s important to dispose of the used paint cans, brushes, and any other materials correctly. Check your local regulations to find out how to properly dispose of these items. By doing so, you can ensure that you are following sustainable practices and being mindful of the environment.

Maintain and Clean the Cabinets

To keep your newly painted kitchen cabinets looking fresh and vibrant for as long as possible, it’s necessary to regularly clean and maintain them. Use a gentle soap and water mixture to clean the cabinets, avoiding harsh or abrasive cleaners that could damage the paint finish. By taking the time to clean your cabinets on a regular basis, you can prevent dirt, grease, and other residues from building up and potentially causing damage.

It’s also important to be mindful of any potential damage from water or steam exposure. The kitchen is a place where water and steam are often present, so taking necessary precautions to protect your newly painted cabinets is essential. Consider installing a backsplash to shield the cabinets from any splashes or steam, and wipe away any water or moisture as soon as possible to prevent it from seeping into the paint and causing damage.

Periodic Touch-ups

Although painting your kitchen cabinets without sanding can provide fantastic results, over time, wear and tear may cause the painted surface to chip or fade in certain areas. To maintain the beauty and freshness of your cabinets, it’s a good idea to keep the original paint color, as well as any leftover supplies, for future touch-up projects.

Having the exact matching paint color on hand will make it easier to touch up any areas that need attention. Whether it’s a small chip or a faded section, a quick touch-up can help maintain the overall appearance of your cabinets. By periodically inspecting your cabinets and addressing any touch-up needs promptly, you can extend the lifespan of your painted kitchen cabinets and ensure they continue to look their best.