Top 5 Best Paints For Plywood (2021 Review)

Last Updated On June 4, 2021

Are you looking for amazing furniture paint for your next DIY project?

You've come to the right place!

In this ProPaintCorner.com guide, you'll learn:

  • What the best paints for plywood projects are 
  • How to choose & use the best plywood paint for DIY projects
  • What you should know about painting plywood before getting started

And much more!

Top 5 Best Paints For Plywood (2020 Review)

Below is a quick list of all the best paints out there for painting plywood. Keep scrolling to learn more about how to choose and use the perfect one for you!

Image Product

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Rust-Oleum Painter’s Touch Latex Paint
  • Fast drying
  • Works well on wood – even rough wood like plywood
  • Low-odor
  • Fast drying
  • Works well on wood – even rough wood like plywood
  • Low-odor
View on Amazon

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Montage Signature Interior/Exterior Eco-Friendly Paint
  • Inexpensive for a gallon
  • Very versatile
  • Amazong coverage and a 10 year warranty
  • Inexpensive for a gallon
  • Very versatile
  • Amazong coverage and a 10 year warranty
View on Amazon

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Krylon COLORmaxx Brush On Paint
  • Made specifically for brushing on
  • Comes in artistic colors
  • Fast drying
  • Made specifically for brushing on
  • Comes in artistic colors
  • Fast drying
View on Amazon

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RECOLOR 100% Recycled Interior Latex Paint
  • Wide variety of color
  • Completely recycled paint
  • Durable and washable when dried
  • Wide variety of color
  • Completely recycled paint
  • Durable and washable when dried
View on Amazon

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PRESTIGE Interior Paint & Primer In One
  • Paint + primer combo
  • Durable
  • Washable
  • Paint + primer combo
  • Durable
  • Washable
View on Amazon

Our Overall #1 Rated Pick

Updated On June 4, 2021

Our top choice of plywood paint is the Rust-Oleum Painter's Touch Latex Paint.

This paint comes in at an affordable price, is incredibly durable, and easy to use.

This is one of the best paints for both interior and exterior painting, which means it will hold up to the high-traffic environment if you're painting plywood flooring or creating a DIY masterpiece.

If you're looking for a durable, affordable, high-quality type of paint to use on your next plywood project, the Painter's Touch is the paint for you!

What Is the Best Paint For Painting Plywood?

Long story short, paints for plywood are usually just standard latex paints.

Latex paints are water-based acrylic paints that are generally very durable, but they're also easy to dispose of and are washable once they've dried.

The reason these are perfect for painting plywood is that they have more flexibility than oil-based paints which means they're less prone to chipping and will create the smoothest surface possible on a rough textured surface like plywood.

So that's why choosing a durable paint like a high-quality latex paint is key here.

NOTE: You can opt to use spray paint if you want to, however, it's very easy for spray paint to create an uneven finish, so only go that route if you have experience with spraying paint and getting an even coating that way.

Read More >> How Do You Paint Without Leaving Brush Strokes?

How Should You Choose & Use The Best Paints For Painting Plywood?

So if plywood paints aren't really much different than standard interior latex paints, how do you choose the best one for your plywood makeover?

There are a few key things to think about when choosing your paint, and a few things do know before you dive into using that paint on your cabinet doors.

Paint Finish

One of the biggest factors that is going to determine the look and feel of your plywood project is the paint finish you choose to use.

There are multiple different finishes - or "sheens" - you can choose from, but most people tend to like satin or semi-gloss paint for that nice, sleek effect.

That said, you may decide to go with a more understated flat finish which will still have a bit of a shine but not as much as a glossy finish paint.

Ultimately, you want to choose a sheen that is going to create a final coat that is going to give you the result you're looking for when working on your plywood project.

How Much Paint Will You Need?

In general, most gallons of paint cover anywhere from 200 to 400 sq. ft. which, depending on the project at hand, will likely be enough to get the job done.

However, if you need to apply a second coat (which you likely will to get the right finish) make sure you factor that in - as well as your square footage - to your calculations when determining how much paint to buy.

Did you know: Using a primer when you paint can actually save you money! This is because it creates a much better surface for your paint to adhere to, so you'll likely use less of it.

To Prime Or Not To Prime?

In short: ALWAYS PRIME!

Especially when you're trying to create a smooth surface but you're working with plywood, you need to use a primer (and probably a sealer or primer/sealer) to get the smoothest finish possible.

A lot of DIY painters tend to want to avoid priming because it adds extra steps (and extra cost), however this can lead to a rough topcoat because your rough surface will create an uneven look.

So, are you working with a low grade, rough surface plywood? You need to use a high quality primer like this one.

Are you working with a high grade plywood but looking to create a cool design? Use a primer, but you can go with a cheaper one like this because you don't need as much help creating a smooth surface for good paint adhesion.

Even if this remodel is just a fun DIY project, you still want to ensure that the finished result is going to look great.

Read More >> What Are The Best Primers To Use For Wood?

Supplies You'll Need For Painting Furniture

Last but not least, let's talk about a few key supplies you need to gather in order to truly paint your furniture like a pro.

Whether you choose to use a paintbrush (beware of the brush marks!), a paint roller, or a paint sprayer, you'll need to protect yourself, and your home as well.

  • Plastic drop cloths
  • Painter's tape
  • Goggles
  • Paint respirator
  • Paint brush / paint sprayer / paint roller
  • Paint tray
  • High Grit Sandpaper for sanding (or sanding block)
  • Wood filler (for filling nail holes)
  • Putty knife
  • Paint of choice
  • Primer/Sealer of choice
  • Polyurethane (if you need to protect the wood surface once it's done)

Keep in mind, different types of plywood may need different prep work to create a smooth surface to work on. And if you're going to be painting the edges of the plywood, that might take a bit more work as well.

Also, make sure you're using high quality brushes, otherwise you might struggle with brush shedding and brush strokes showing through in the finished product.

With all that said, you may need a few other supplies depending on your particular painting project, but this is a good working list to start with.

Now on to the paint selections!

Read More >> How Many Coats Of Primer Should You Use On Wood?

Our Reviews Of The Best 5 Paints For Painting Plywood

The Painter's Touch line from Rust-Oleum is a fantastic type of paint to use for furniture because it's latex paint/acrylic paint that is scrubbable, durable, and relatively low-odor.

Latex paint is the best for beginners or DIY fans because it doesn't have a high-VOC content (a.k.a high paint fumes!) and disposal of it is much easier.

Not only that, but this particular paint can be used on many different surfaces.

That means you can use it to paint wood, metal, plastic, and more so no matter what type of furniture you're using it for it should get the job done (as long as you used a good primer!).

Pros

  • Fast drying
  • Works on wood, metal, and a variety of surfaces
  • Low-odor

Cons

  • Doesn't come in the best "furniture" oriented colors
  • Hard to find a full gallon size on Amazon

If you're looking for a budget-friendly paint with a wider variety of paint colors, the Montage Signature paint is a great option.

Not only is this paint eco-friendly and made in the USA, but it offers amazing coverage which makes it an awesome choice for all sorts of painting projects.

It unfortunately only comes in 2 sheen options - low-sheen (comparable to a matte finish or flat finish) and semi-gloss finish - so if you're looking for a high-gloss finish this one might not work for you.

However, the upside of this is it does come in a 5-gallon size as well so if you're looking to buy in bulk and save even more money on future painting projects, this is the right paint for you!

Pros

  • Comes in 1 and 5-gallon sizes
  • Inexpensive
  • Eco-friendly with 10-year warranty

Cons

  • Only 2 sheen options
  • Not the widest variety of paint color options

While this option is defintely on the pricey side if you need a lot of paint, if you're doing a fun DIY painting project that calls for less paint but more interesting colors, this is a great option!

This is a high-end paint to use for painting plywood, but if you're doing a fun crafty project with a high grade plywood and you're looking to use multiple colors across the entire surface, the COLORmaxx Brush On Paint is a great option.

It's still got high durability as it's an acrylic latex paint, but it has more flexibility in terms of designs and looks you can create with it.

I would recommend using a good primer with this paint, however, if you're looking to create an intricate DIY plywood project.

Pros

  • Made specifically for brushing on
  • Comes in artistic colors
  • Fast drying

Cons

  • Expensive in the bigger sizes
  • Only works well for small areas (too pricey for more square footage)

Our next choice is one of my favorite paint brands out there because it's an eco-friendly kind of paint that is made of 100% recycled latex paint.

Not only is this paint fantastic at covering wood grain and creating a smooth finish on the surface of the wood, it's a great all-around paint to use for a variety of home improvement projects.

While I would recommend sanding your plywood first and putting a few coats of primer down first to get the best finish, this paint is a fantastic choice to use for painting plywood.

Not only that, but it's pretty comparable to other types of paint that aren't as eco-friendly, so if you're looking to use a high-quality paint that's also better for the environment, this is a great choice for you!

Pros

  • Wide variety of color
  • Completely recycled paint
  • Durable and washable when dried

Cons

  • Not a super wide variety of paint color options
  • Dry time is 2-6 hours on the first coat before adding a second coat

If you're a DIY fan looking to do a complete plywood project, look no further than the PRESTIGE Interior Paint & Primer In One.

This paint is specifically designed for painting pieces of furniture and interior wood surfaces. 

If you're looking to create a beautiful painted surface with a smooth finish, this paint will do a great job. 

Just keep in mind, if you're working with rough plywood, you'll need to use a primer to get the best finish, even though this is a paint + primer combo.

It's an acrylic paint that offers a semi-gloss finish that is easy to apply and to clean up because it's water-based latex paint as I mentioned above.

If you're looking for a beautiful paint to refinish the surface of the plywood, this PRESTIGE paint is a great option for you.

Pros

  • Paint + primer combo
  • Durable
  • Washable (easy to clean up)

Cons

  • Hard to find other colors/sheens on Amazon
  • Need to let paint dry for 4 hours between coats

Our top choice is still the amazing Painter's Touch Latex Paint by Rust-Oleum.

Because this paint is so versatile, durable, and affordable, it's a great candidate for all sorts of plywood painting projects.

Not only that, but you can keep a gallon of this in your garage for future furniture or painting projects as well.

If you're looking for a paint that's easy to use and apply for a smooth finish on that final coat, this is the paint for you.

Plus, it's a great value for the money! Check out the lowest price on Amazon right here.

Final Thoughts On Painting Plywood

Now that you know what you need to know about selecting the best paint for your plywood project, you're ready to get started!

Just make sure to follow proper safety protocols and take your time so you get the best finish possible.

The Most Important Part: Your Safety

Your safety is the most important part of your paint project, and you would. be surprised at how fast you can get hurt from painting.

Don't forget this key safety equipment when working with paint.

Safety Glasses

Your eyesight is delicate. Cover up your eyes with some safety glasses when painting.

Nitrile gloves

Use nitrile gloves to keep your hands clean for the next business deal.

Although latex paint isn't very damaging to your hands, stains and lacquers are, so keeping your hands covered up will keep you comfortable after the fact.

Cotton Mask/Respirator

Paint fumes are damaging to your health. Wear a cotton mask when working with latex and water-based paints, and a respirator when working with stains, epoxies, lacquers, and other oil-based paints to avoid exposure to harmful chemicals.


With all that said, make sure you take your time if this is a new undertaking for you as a DIY painter, follow as many tutorial videos as possible, and don't be afraid to consult an expert if need be.

As always, happy painting!

Meet Your Pro Paint Corner Author

Madison Rude

Madison Rude

I’m kind of a painting nerd. My mom taught me how to paint when I was nine, and since then I’ve painted rooms, furniture...you name it. I’ve written technical advice for Wagner sprayers, and I’ve spent a lot of time DIYing my own home. I’m no expert, but I love to learn. And here at ProPaintCorner, I learn more about painting every time I work with one of our painting pros to bring you the best product reviews and How To advice available. Together, let’s make your next painting project the best it can be!

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Madison Rude

Madison Rude

I’m kind of a painting nerd. My mom taught me how to paint when I was nine, and since then I’ve painted rooms, furniture...you name it. I’ve written technical advice for Wagner sprayers, and I’ve spent a lot of time DIYing my own home. I’m no expert, but I love to learn. And here at ProPaintCorner, I learn more about painting every time I work with one of our painting pros to bring you the best product reviews and How To advice available. Together, let’s make your next painting project the best it can be!

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