Nitpicky 6-month painted tile update

A little over six months ago I finished painting my ENTIRE bathroom — the tile floors, grout, shower, stenciled the walls, even painted the side of the tub and backsplash. I promised an honest 6-month update, so here we are, the good bad and ugly! Here’s what worked and what didn’t.

I painted my entire bathroom - walls, ceiling, tub panel, floor, shower tile-1-1

Overall, this project was a great success, but I’m getting nitpicky here and will share all the little details most DIYers would like to skip over. Nothing has been sponsored so I have nothing to hide!

Painting bathroom tile - how to paint tile floors, grout, shower, plastic bathtub panel and backsplash - Kendall Charcoal paint

This is my original painted bathroom post with the complete tutorials and videos.

How to paint bathroom floor tile and grout

Floor tile

Project: Let’s start with the floor. I painted every other tile with bonding primer and then oil based enamel in Behr Light French Gray. I sealed it with polycrylic.

I also painted the grout with watered down floor and porch paint in the same color.

Painted tile 6 month update - how long does painted tile last
Painted tile 6 month update - how long does painted tile last

6 months later: I couldn’t be more pleased with this outcome. It is the exact same after daily traffic as it was since I first painted it. The only minor, minor detail are these slight scuffs (above) where I stand every morning and every night to get ready and wash my face.

Bathtub side panel & backsplash

Project: I used oil based enamel in Benjamin Moore Kendall Charcoal on the (yellowing) plastic tub side panel and on the tile backsplash. I didn’t use primer as kids don’t use it and it doesn’t get touched often.

Painted tile 6 month update - how long does painted tile last
Painted tile 6 month update - how long does painted tile last

6 month update: This held up perfectly. And I am a bath person, so many a bath has been taken since!

I did the same thing in my 5-year-old daughter’s bathroom (in ombré coral!) and hers has held up great too, minus a few scratches from plastic toys. I did prime hers with bonding primer first though.

Stenciled shower wall - Painting shower tile - floors and walls with bonding primer and oil base enamel

Shower tile

Project: I primed the entire shower with bonding primer and then painted the walls with white oil based enamel and the floor with Kendall Charcoal oil based enamel. Next I stenciled the walls with various paints on hand and put a clear coat of polycrylic over the walls to protect the stencil.

6 month update: Here’s where where things aren’t as glamorous and what I should have done differently.

Painted tile 6 month update - how long does painted tile last

There is a small spot on the floor what peeled away. I remember seeing that little spot not coated heavily enough with bonding primer after my paint was put away. I was tired of painting and let it go. That was a mistake! The good news is that it shows no sign of peeling farther and that means that the bonding primer, where applied properly!, is doing its job. The rest of the floor is good to go.

Secondly, the shelf couldn’t hold up to soapy residue from product bottles and sitting wet. There are various peels. If I were to do it again, I wouldn’t have painted the top of the shelf.

yellowing polycrylic

And this is very nitpicky, but I still want to mention it. The polycrylic over the stencil ever so slightly yellowed where too many coats were applied or not coated evenly. You know when you press down on a sponge roller and the ends have slight lines where the paint is thicker? That’s what I’m talking about.

Can you paint a tile shower?

Overall though, the shower looks so much better than before and is actually holding up better than I thought after daily showers!

6 month bathroom tile update


In conclusion, I am still so happy with this project! It completely transformed this bathroom and gave it a new life and personality. This buys us several years to save for a remodel. Remember, painting tile is not the same as factory tile. It won’t last forever, but it is such a great temporary solution for very little money!

If I were doing it again, I would make sure the bonding primer was coated evenly and well. And I would skip painting the top of shower shelf. Other than that, that is project is holding up very well!


Oh, one more word about cleaning! I simply use a small amount of dish soap and soft sponge or microfiber cloth for cleaning the painted tile. The finish is glossy and cleans up easily.

Let me know if you have any questions or if you’ve painted tile yourself. I’d love to hear how it went and any tips you might have!

6 months painted tile update - how to paint floor and shower tile
6 months painted tile update - how to paint floor and shower tile
6 months painted tile update - and what I should have done differently - how to paint bathroom shower tile

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