How to Apply Faux Granite Kitchen Countertop Paint

Kitchen countertop before applying faux granite paint finish.
Plastic laminate kitchen countertop before applying faux granite paint.

Faux granite countertop painting kits, such as those from Giani, can give worn or dated plastic laminate kitchen countertops the look of real stone.

Granite countertop painting kits include everything you need to transform your countertops, including: primer, liquid minerals, clear topcoat, foam brush, roller, sponge, and instructions.

Countertop after finishing with faux granite paint.
Same countertop after finishing with faux granite paint.

To apply granite countertop paint:

    1. Clean: Thoroughly clean countertops using scouring pad to remove any grease or grime.
    1. Rinse: Use water and a clean cloth to rinse countertops twice to remove any cleaner residue.
    1. Caulk: Remove any silicone caulking that isn’t paintable, and replace with paintable caulk if needed.
    1. Patch: Fill any nicks or holes with wood patch or auto body filler and sand smooth with countertop.
    1. Mask: Apply painter’s tape around edges of countertops to protect walls and cabinets.
    1. Prime: Apply primer to countertops using brush and roller and allow to dry.
    1. Apply Minerals: Use sponge to dab different colored liquid minerals to countertop in a random pattern and allow to dry.
    1. Add Accents: Use an artist’s brush to add faux veins and other features to the countertops. Dab accents with sponge to soften the lines.
    1. Sand: Lightly sand surface with fine sandpaper and remove any dust.
    1. Topcoat: Use brush and roller to apply two coats of clear finish, sanding lightly between coats with fine sandpaper.
  1. Drying Time: Allow countertops to dry for one to three days or more before using.

Watch this video to find out more.

Further Information

The first step to painting countertops is thoroughly cleaning them, so that the paint can adhere properly. Using a scouring pad is a good idea to ensure that the surface is perfectly clean. Next, mask off anything you don’t want painted with painter’s tape before you begin applying the bonding primer.

For faux granite painting kits, the primer is usually black, and the best application tools are a simple foam brush and a narrow foam roller. Depending on the manufacturer’s instructions, the primer will need to dry for several hours before you continue.

At that point you can begin applying the various colors that will create the illusion of granite. These are applied with a natural sponge in a random pattern over the countertop surface. Most kits will direct you to apply them in a specific order to achieve a specific look. The key is to keep it random. You can aid this by occasionally rotating the sponge as you apply the paint.

As the counter starts taking shape, you may want to add diagonal lines of the darker colors to create the illusion of veins that are in natural granite; or even use a little of the black primer on an artist brush to create smaller veins. Finally, soften any hard lines with the sponge before leaving it to dry.

Once dry you can apply the first coat of sealer. Do this carefully so you don’t leave any lap lines with the roller. The sealer has a glossy finish so lap lines and bubbles will be very obvious once it’s dry. The last step is a second coat of sealer, and then you have a beautiful countertop.


  1. My house needs lots of work. We are a single income family and looking to save money and time! I like the idea of making our ugly laminate countertops look glossy and expensive without the actual expense. However, I do LOTS of cooking and projects (canning, homemade baby food, and other fun things). My question is, how do these painted countertops hold up? I’ve been known to put hot things (even if its a no no) on the countertop without thinking and even cutting something real quick on the counter with a knife. If I go through with this project, would I have to reapply the sealer very often or does it hold up well to use? Thanks so much! Love this website and the show!

  2. It looked beautiful, but water discolored it and peeling after. It now looks worse than before i did it. I was just wanting a new look. My original counters were only a couple years old but now look terrible.

  3. The faux Granite Kitchen Counter top looks great but how does the finish perform in a working kitchen? Will standing water around the sink area cause discoloration or peeling, will the finish stand up to heat from a hot pan, will hot splattered grease spot the finish, will grease or cooking oil dissolve it, will lemon juice etch it, will grape juice stain it? If any of these things affect the faux appearance, I think the more practical and less costly solution in the long run is to glue a new high quality laminate on the counter top.

  4. My wife Judy was in Savannah for the weekend with her sister when I decided it would be a good time to surprise her by painting the countertops.

    As you might imagine I was scared to death of screwing this up, or worse that Judy would think I screwed it up. But I went ahead and did it anyway because you can always paint over a bad paint job.

    Our plastic laminate counters were still holding together well but the color had seen better days. The finish had basically worn off and felt like a superfine sandpaper when you ran your hand over it. I tried to look on the positive side and decided that the paint would bond well to the rough surface. It was just about the only positive attribute that these counters had left.

    It took the entire weekend but by the time I was done I had created a countertop that resembled a granite called brown pearl.

    Judy got home in the late afternoon on Sunday and she pretty much flipped out. Because of her initial reaction I thought I was a gonner, but apparently that was just a look of surprise.

    After the look of shock wore off she started thanking me profusely and telling me how much she loved them and how much she loved me. The amount of relief I felt in that moment was like when your dog returns home after living on the lam for three days in the woods.

    They still look pretty good today. The only problem I had was that after the finish coat dried there were a couple spots that you could tell where the roller overlapped. But it’s such an improvement over the old counters I don’t even care.

  5. Just a quick note. I used this kit recently and am thrilled with the results. As it says, do not put hot stuff on it, cut on it etc. just as you would on any other countertop. Also, remember to caulk around the sink so that water doesn’t cause swelling under the countertop.

    Well worth the money, time and trouble and really quite good fun. I enjoyed the whole process.

  6. Please tell me how long after applying the second coat of topcoat on my bathroom counter can we take showers in the bathroom? I’m worried that the moisture might detract from the curing. I applied the last coat two days ago and it looks great!


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