Can You Paint Over Contact Paper?

Do you want to paint your furniture or wall with contact paper on it? Some home furniture comes with this product, and most times, it does not blend with the interior décor of the space.

This has left many homeowners wondering if they can put paint over contact paper without damaging the paper.

Contact paper can be painted over. You need to apply a suitable primer on the surface before applying the paint. Ordinary latex and oil paints will not stick to the paper properly. Hence, you need to use a high-quality primer-sealer to make the surface paintable and last longer.

Can You Paint Over Contact Paper?

In this article I will explain if you can paint over contact paper. I will also answer different queries you might have on this topic. Read on to know more.

How to Paint over Contact Paper

While it is possible to paint over contact paper, not knowing how to do it will ruin the paper.

For instance, using the wrong paint can be detrimental to the success of the project, as it can chemically react with the plastic.

It can also seep into the seams and weaken the glue, causing the paper to peel off. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to paint every contact paper.

Here is a list of the things you need for this task:

  • Primer-sealer
  • Surface cleaner
  • Paint
  • Paint tray
  • Paint roller (plus extension)

Step One: Clean the Surface of the Contact Paper

The first thing you need to do is clean the contact paper properly.

This step is crucial, and you need to do it before applying the primer.

Without getting rid of oil and dust on the paper’s surface, the paint will fail to stick, and even the best primers will not stick on it.

Hence, you need to ensure there is no oil or grease on the contact paper before applying the primer.

Cleaning the surface should be easy; you can use any cleaner of your choice.

However, consider the safety of the contact paper when choosing a cleaner.

Step Two: Apply the Prime-Sealer

After cleaning the contact paper, the next thing is to make it paintable; that is where the prime-sealer comes in.

To make the contact paper paintable, you need to make a coat of glue on it. Use the best quality primer for this job.

Apply thin, even coat on the surface.

Ensure the primer reaches every corner of the contact paper.

Use a roller to spread the primer on the entire surface, and use a small brush to prime tight corners, edges, and around electrical outlets.

After applying the primer, allow it to dry for some time.

Check the manufacturer’s instructions to know how long you should leave it to dry.

Also Read: Can You Put Paint Rollers in the Dryer?

Step Three: Apply the Paint

Once the primer is dry and set, the next step is to download the surface.

However, you need to be careful when painting the contact paper.

Firstly, you need to choose the right paint for the job.

Choose a paint that does not contain any chemical composite that can damage the coat of the primer.

The paint should also be suitable for contact paper without dissolving the glue.

Besides the damaging type of paint, you can use any other paint you want.

If you have used the right primer seal on the surface, painting it will be easier.

At this point, you can showcase your creativity on the contact paper; paint and design it the way you want.

Note: Avoid exposing your contact paper to much heat.

While you can use different cleaners to clean contact papers, do not use sandpaper on them.

The sandpaper will leave marks on the surface, making it look rough.

Is Contact Paper Waterproof?

Contact paper is waterproof. It has a vinyl coating that prevents it from getting wet.

That is why it is recommended to apply a primer before painting.

The primer seal will increase the adhesiveness of the paper, making paint stick on it without falling off.

Are Acrylic Paints Safe to Use on Contact Papers?

You can use acrylic paints on contact paper.

Nevertheless, you need to prepare the surface by having a coat of primer seal on the surface of the contact paper before applying acrylic paint.

Can I Paint over Contact Adhesive?

After removing contact paper, some people would like to repaint the surface or wall.

But there might be contact adhesive on the wall or surface, which might make painting a bit challenging.

For easier and smoother painting, you need to remove the bumps of glue on the surface.

Sand and scour the adhesive, clean the surface with a wet cloth, and use a sponge to rub it.

After cleaning it, allow the surface to dry.

Apply primer on the surface, allow it to dry, and then paint.

Can You Paint over All Types of Contact Paper?

There are three different types of contact papers, so it is essential to know if you can paint over all of them. The different types of contact papers on the market today are:

  1. Clear Contact Paper: Clear contact paper is mainly used on transparent surfaces.
  2. Fabric Contact Paper: This type of contact paper is mainly used for enhancing the look and feel of a room, giving it a premium look.
  3. Standard Contact Paper: Standard contact paper is often used on wardrobes and walls.

These contact papers are available in different sizes and shapes. You can paint over all types of contact paper.


You can paint over contact paper, regardless of the type. All you have to do is ensure you prepare the surface of the contact paper properly before applying the paint.

Clean the contact paper surface, apply good quality primer, allow it to dry, and then apply the paint.

Ensure you use the best quality paint without any chemical makeup that reacts with adhesive.

Cheers, tools owners!

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Hi there! My name is Jack and I write for ToolsOwner. I have a passion for everything related to tools and DIY projects around the house. You often find me in my workshop working on new projects.