The Best Method for Sealing Painted Furniture (2024)

Sealing painted furniture and looking for the best top coat to protect your project, or ow to seal painted furniture? Look no further, this set by step tutorial with video walks you through how to seal painted wood using a sponge applicator.

Transforming furniture with a fresh coat of paint is a fantastic way to breathe new life into your space, but ensuring that vibrant color lasts requires the right sealing method. If you’ve ever found yourself frustrated with paint chipping or fading over time, worry no more.

In this blog post, we’ll dive into the ultimate solution for sealing painted furniture, showing the best method you need to try for long-lasting beauty and durability. Say goodbye to worries about your carefully crafted masterpiece deteriorating – let’s explore the key to sealing success

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So you’vestarted furniture painting and want to know how to seal painted furniture? Guess what? You are in the right place because it’s easier than you think. So rest assured that if you are racking your brain tofigure out what’s the best top coat for painted furniture or even the best clear coat for painted wood you can stop worrying.

When trying to figure out the best way to seal painted furniture I bet you’veheard about things like wipe on poly over chalk paint or polycrylic over paint. Perhaps you are considering wax to seal painted furniture. Stop right there and let me share what I have found to be the best method for sealing painting furniture to put your mind at ease.

Simple Supply List for Sealing Painted Furniture

Disclosure: Thispost contains affiliate links for your convenience. Click here for my fulldisclosure policy

This is the basic source list for the products and items used in this tutorial:

Choosing Your Clear Coat for Painted Wood

When it comes to choosing a clear sealer for painted wood the options of what’s available can seem endless. To keep this simple I will be using Dixie Belle’s clear coat in Satin Finish and Gator Hide as theclear coat over painted woodtable.

The Dixie Belle clear coats come in satin, flat (matte finish), and gloss finishes. You can check out all of their sealers and finishesHERE. Whensealing painted furnitureyou will need yourprotective top coat, a few paper plates, plastic spoons, a clean chip brush, lint-freecloth, and my all-time favorite yellow applicator sponge. You can get thesesponges HERE

Preparing Your Painted FurnitureFor Sealer

Before applying your clear coat over painted wood furnitureyou will want to give it a once-over with a lint-free cloth(or tack cloth).

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Grab a lint-free cloth and wipe off the surface to make sure that is free of any dust. The cloth will remove any dust making sure you are left with a clean smooth finish. Easy peasy.

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A Clear Sealer for Painted Furniture that Repels Water

What? Yes, you read that correctly! Gator Hide is water repellant and Iam using it on the table top. This table is for my son who is 7 years old. He needs a place to work on his Legos and erector set and all the other kinds of things that little boys build. But let’s face it – kids are gross! I want to make sure that if these little dirt mongers sneak a drink into the play area or near this table that the painted table top(or stained rather) will be protected from their spills and whatever else they may bring. Mom-1, Kids-0.Gator Hide is the perfect durable finish for this painted and stainedpiece of furniture.

It would also be great for sealing high-traffic items like kitchen cabinets, or a kitchen table.

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Spoon some Gator Hide onto a paper plate with a plastic fork. I keep all the fancy plates and cutlery in my shop as you can see 😉

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How to Seal Painted Furniture with a Sponge

Now grab that yellow sponge that I love so much and dampen the sponge before you do anything else. Don’t make it soaking wet or dripping, just run it under water and then squeeze it out so that it is damp.

Dab your damp sponge on the plate to get yourclear furniture sealant onto the sponge and wipe it across your table surface. Do not use too much, do not wipe all willy-nilly, and do not drag the sealer. (Don’t worry, I’ll show you a video too).Using the sponge to seal your painted furniture piecewill prevent any visible brush strokes that you may get if you seal with a brush.

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Sealing Painted Furniture Table Legs

Now that you see how easy it is to seal painted furniture on a flat surface let’s move on to a not-so-flat surface. The table legs and apron. For the bottom portion of this painted table, I am using Dixie Belle clear coat in a satin finish. Spoon a bit onto a new plate as well. Or use the same plate, either way, should be fine.

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Grab that handy dandy little yellow sponge again and sponge your clear top coat over your painted furniture.

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But because there are crevices and nooks and crannies on the legs like many pieces of painted furniture you want to make sure you don’t have any build-up in these areas. Use a clean chip brush and go over the painted surface to make sure to wipe away any pooled-up clear sealer.

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Video Tutorial for Sealing Painted Furniture

To make this even better I have put together a video tutorial showing you how to seal painted furniture using the applicator sponge. I walk you through the entire process, so if you are a visual person go ahead and check it out.

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Painted Furniture Sealed for Protection

For a quick recap: Always make sure to protect your hard work with the best sealer. Apply your sealer in a thin layerover the entire surface of your painted furniture piece and allow for enough dry time between coats for the best protection and a flawless finish.

Here is the finished painted table sealed to perfection. The tutorial for this makeover can be found here: How to Build a DIY Wood Table and Paint Gorgeous Green Layers!

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Check out all of my furniture projects with over 90 painted furniture makeovers: Stunning painted furniture ideas.

If you like this post make sure to check out all of the tips & secrets that I wish someone told me when I started painting furniture here: Painting Furniture Secrets

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The Best Method for Sealing Painted Furniture (2024)


The Best Method for Sealing Painted Furniture? ›

Solvent-Based Polyurethane Sealants

Solvent-based polyurethanes are more effective at sealing wood because they produce a stronger film. This product is a good choice when working with oil-based paints.

What is the best finish to put on painted furniture? ›

Choosing the right finish for your painted furniture
  1. Bees wax clear wax paste. You can't beat wax for that beautiful satiny finish that looks great, isn't too shiny and gives your painted furniture a beautiful depth and richness you just can't achieve with any other finish. ...
  2. Hemp finishing oil. ...
  3. Polyurethane sealers.
Dec 24, 2018

What is best to seal painted wood? ›

Solvent-Based Polyurethane Sealants

Solvent-based polyurethanes are more effective at sealing wood because they produce a stronger film. This product is a good choice when working with oil-based paints.

Should you clear coat furniture after painting? ›

For optimal durability, we recommend sealing your piece with 3-4 coats of Clear Coat. Although the full cure time of Clear Coat is about 3-4 weeks, you can start using your piece after just 24 hours. Be gentle with your piece for the first few weeks and avoid rigorous cleaning to avoid damaging the finish.

How do you seal painted wood furniture? ›

How to seal painted furniture. Once you have painted your surface and left it to dry completely (for at least 24 hours), it's a good idea to seal the wood using a specialist wood sealer. This provides an extra protective layer for the finish and the seal turns the wood into a smooth surface which is easy to wipe clean.

Is Polycrylic or polyurethane better for painted furniture? ›

And polyurethane imparts an amber cast to any surface, whether it's raw wood or paint. On the other hand, if you have a project inside such as light-colored furniture or interior trim, polycrylic should be your pick. It doesn't smell as much as polyurethane, and best of all, it cleans up with soap and water.

What kind of sealer to use on painted wood furniture? ›

Painted Wood Sealers
  1. Famowood. Glaze Coat Clear Gloss Epoxy Interior Resin (1-Gallon)
  2. Fiberlock. White Semi-gloss Water-based Interior Acrylic (5-Gallon)
  3. Famowood. Glaze Coat Clear Gloss Epoxy Interior Resin (1-quart)

What clear coat goes over painted wood? ›

Clear coats don't all take the same time to dry. Drying time depends on the type of product applied, and by drying conditions. What is the best clear coat for painted furniture? Acrylic solvent-based because it has very good flowing power and high yellowing resistance.

What is the best clear coat for wood furniture? ›

Polyurethane wood finishes are synthetic coatings that are highly durable and water resistant, making them the best clear coat for wood protection.

How do you seal furniture after painting? ›

Clear Coat is also the best way to seal and protect outdoor furniture and decor from the elements!
  1. Step 1) Paint your piece.
  2. Step 2) Stir the Clear Coat.
  3. Clear Coat should never be shaken. ...
  4. Using a painting sponge, apply Clear Coat in long, smooth strokes in one direction.
Aug 16, 2023

How do you seal new paint on furniture? ›

"Use clear chalk paint wax, matte, or gloss chalk paint lacquer, and apply over the entire painted surface," she says. Once dry, you can replace any removed drawers and hardware.

How do you keep painted furniture from peeling? ›

While paint is pretty durable, it still requires that extra bit of help. Without it, cracks will form and the paint will peel away. The solution to this is pretty simple: just apply a protective sealant to the furniture. And if you want an even easier solution, purchase paint with a topcoat already built in.

Should I use satin or semi gloss for painted furniture? ›

Semigloss: This might be the best paint finish for furniture, as a semigloss paint reflects light well and stands up to washing and the demands of use. The greater concentration of resins in a semigloss formula make this paint more durable for furniture you actually plan to put to work.

Is it better to varnish or wax painted furniture? ›

While wax can be buffed to a soft sheen, it's going to remain pretty matte and is best for projects where you're looking for a more natural, hand-painted look. Varnish is available in two sheens levels: Low-Luster and Gloss, making it great option for projects where you want a bit more shine.

Is it better to use wax or polyurethane? ›

This category depends on the look you are trying to achieve. Hardwax oils are a great option if you are looking for a matte finish that keeps both the natural look and feel of the wood. Polyurethanes are great if you want an increased sheen and prefer less texture to the floor.

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