Last Updated on October 30, 2021 by Joseph Tyler
Painting a piece of furniture white is one of the most challenging tasks to do, in my opinion. First, you must take the necessary steps to ensure the white paint doesn’t yellow over time and avoid seeing bleeds in your paint.
In this article, we will touch on some essential information that would help as a guide on how to seal white painted furniture.
However, the earlier you realize that all sealants aren’t equal, the better for you. The sealant or topcoat you use on your painted furniture has a long say in determining the outcome of your furniture.
Some of them work on stained and in no time, causes the furniture to turn yellow, likewise, some other sealants too, when applied on dark paint colors, they tend to leave a milky film on the furniture’s surface. Meanwhile, some of them need to be regularly applied and trust me.
But, on the other hand, some work perfectly fine without any issue whatsoever. So going through this article to the latter end would have you learn how these paintings are being protected so they can last for a longer period and continue to look beautiful as ever.
It would also provide you with the step-by-step guide as to painting and, to that end, walk you through a few decisions, if not all, relating to painting your furniture as well as the perfect sealers to finish off your painted furniture.
Meanwhile, before going fully into details, we should at least discuss what sealers are and what they do.
Uses of sealers
Sealers are otherwise called topcoats. And they help to protect your beautiful paint finish from chips, scuffs, stains, and scratches.
They also protect your painted furniture from water and create a surface that can be cleaned easily without damaging the paint underneath. This is because sealers dry to a much harder finish than most paint, making them much harder to damage.
Probably you’ve had your walls painted several times without applying any sealant to its surface afterward, and you’re beginning to think that there’s no need to use a sealer on your furniture.
Well, for starters, I’d say painting walls and painting are two extremely different things here. If there’s a fingernail scratch on your wall, you cannot scratch off the paint because it adheres firmly. After all, drywall is extremely porous and absorbs paints quickly.
However, painting a piece of furniture is another different matter. The hardwoods in which are being made don’t permeate paints easily. Likewise, the old finish we’re typically trying to paint over, the paint doesn’t make bond firmly to the finish.
Meanwhile, some paints also scuff and stain very quickly hence making it quite difficult to clean. This is to tell you that painted are often vulnerable to being easily chipped and scratched. So sealing your painted furniture, however, protects it from all of these capable of arising issues.
However, it is also essential to know when sealers should be used, when those pieces of painted furniture should be sealed. And this takes us to the next question of when painted furniture needs to be sealed.
When should the painted furniture be sealed?
So as not to be confused on when you have to seal pained furniture because ideally, it can be quite confusing when one isn’t being cleared, below are some of the basic rules to keep in mind as regards this:
Each time a piece of furniture is painted white, its finish must be protected with a sealer or topcoat. Remember, every single time.
Perhaps you’re painting a piece of furniture with latex paint, but this furniture will not be heavily used, then you can avoid using a sealer on its finish. However, you have to maintain a higher level of care. It would be best if you were extra gentle with it for the first month of use.
And this is because, although the paint may feel dry to the touch, it can still take up to 30 days thereabout for it to fully and completely get hardened.
Meanwhile, if the furniture will be used for large operations and you’re using latex paint, then whether you like it or not, you have to apply a sealer or topcoat to its finish to protect it.
Lastly, some other paints do not necessarily require a sealer. Some of these paints include Americana Decor Satin Enamels, Fusion Mineral Paint, and General Finishes Milk Paint. This is because these above-listed paints have some self-sealing properties and thus makes them require no further finishing.
But then, I’ve heard cases of even these paints becoming worn and scratched when used on high traffic surfaces like shelves, kitchen cabinets, tabletops, and the likes. So to be on the safer side, regardless of whether or not the paint has a sealing property, always ensure to use a sealer so that your paint job can last longer.
Some best topcoat options would perfectly suit white-painted furniture without causing any form of yellowing on its surface. First, however, I’ll be listing some of these topcoat options and how they seal white-painted furniture.
Minwax polycrylic protective finish
This is one of the best options that could be, for a durable sealer over white paint. When applied over white painted furniture, this product tends to stay clear over the surface without any yellowing.
But perhaps you stained your tabletop, and the Polycrylic absorbed some stain in the process, and then some stains ran down the table edge.
It might lead to bubbles and even dry up a thick amount, or sometimes you might see a slight tint of yellow. However, if the product is applied correctly, that is, the crystal clear finish would be gotten in thin coats.
Moreso, if you used white chalk or regular white paint, you can apply a water-based Polycrylic finish which means you do not have to worry about yellowing.
How to seal white painted furniture using Polycrylic.
I do not like brush strokes using a high-quality brush like a purdy brush, so the Purdy brush is just fine. So ensure to do at least 2 and at most 3, coats which are more preferable.
Then, you apply the first coat to the dry painted surface by brushing only in one direction to get rid of brush strokes.
after that, you allow the sealant to dry completely and then sand using 220 or 320 grits sandpaper before applying the next coat. However, be sure to wipe off the dust from sanding before applying the second and third coats of sealant.
Repeat the same sanding process for the remaining coats.
Another perfect topcoat option is their finishing wax.
There are several finishing waxes that you can choose for your project. However, the most common finishing wax for all wood finishing projects is Minwax paste finishing wax.
When used on white paint furniture, a white finishing wax should also be used over the top for an ultra white look. Although the Minwax has a slight yellow tint, when this white finishing wax is applied, it would keep everything pure white!
How to seal white painted furniture using finishing wax.
- After the paint is completely dried, use your wax brush to keep brushing wax over the surface.
- Once you’re done with this, you wait for the product’s recommended time, then you begin buffing wax.
- Then, you apply more coats if necessary.
Epoxy is also another suitable option.
Although expensive and quite labor-intensive, epoxy is still one excellent sealant option to apply over white painted surfaces. If kept inside and the rate of sun exposure is limited, you can expect that your epoxy finish will remain clear.
However, if epoxy finished furniture is exposed to the sun, it will naturally then yellow due to the ultraviolet light. The same thing applies to paint. UV damages wood and paint to change its color. This is why exterior wood uses a different sealer which includes UV and water-resistant characteristics.
However, Dr. Crafty Epoxy Resin Crystal Clear is one best epoxy resins for white paint. It possesses the properties above, and it is pretty affordable.
Conclusion – How to seal white painted furniture
Before we finally call it a wrap with this post, I would love to remind you to be aware and conscious of the steps that painting and sealing white furniture take to avoid any form of yellowing on the surface of your white-painted furniture.
However, knowing the best and perfect sealer for this operation is also a critical part of the process. Because as earlier stated, all sealers aren’t equal, so finding the best sealer option and knowing the steps, not only do you know these steps, but following through every step would only make your paint job very attractive and perfect!
And we’ve been and to help you through some of these best sealer options. All that is left is for you to be careful while using the sealers.
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Hey there, I am Joseph and I have grown up as a son of an enthusiastic woodworker and I continued in the craft after his demise. Above all, this site is in homage to my old man. He is the one that taught me to make beautiful things out of my woodworking experiences.
Sharing something so special with someone I look up to impacted me in ways that I cannot express. This is something that I want to share with the world. I am grateful to be able to share with our growing community online! Thank you all!
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