7 May 2020

11 Dos and Donts when using Chalk Paint® Outdoors!

Using Chalk Paint® outdoors is incredibly easy. Read this blog and learn all you need to know to ensure your garden Chalk Paint® projects stay colourful and cheerful for years to come! I even made a video for you to enjoy at the end!
  • Do use Chalk Paint® outdoors. It’s one of the things I’m most frequently asked, and the answer is yes! You can use Chalk Paint® outdoors.
  • Don’t sand! As with using Chalk Paint® indoors, there is no need to prep or prime your outdoor furniture.
  • Do remove old peeling paint or rust. You will be able to paint over these…but if you don’t get rid of them they will continue peeling under your Chalk Paint® - and will eventually flake off, taking your lovely new paint job with them! Rust may even show through, so best to tackle it head on.
  • Do wipe away any cobwebs or dirt, pop open your Chalk Paint® tin and get stuck straight into the fun part.
  • Do know when to Lacquer and when to leave. Chalk Paint® Lacquer is your garden furnitures' best defence against UV rays, fading paint colour, and peeling paint caused by water damage.
  • Do Lacquer: Garden furniture – anything which will be touched a lot, sat on, or has a horizontal surface which will collect water or fade in bright sunlight needs to be protected with Chalk Paint® Lacquer to ensure paint won’t transfer, peel or fade.
  • Don’t Lacquer: Vertical surfaces – shed walls, fencing, and brickwork are all a) porous (making them IDEAL Chalk Paint® surfaces) and b) vertical facing. This means they are much less prone to the key causes of outdoor damage – UV rays and standing water. Twin enemies of garden furniture!
  • Do use two coats of Lacquer! Apply two thin coats or more of Chalk Paint® Lacquer so you can be sure the entire painted piece is fully protected to prevent any water ingress. Note that curing time for maximum protection occurs over 14 days. See out Fact Sheet here for more info.
  • Do check the weather forecast! Rain will wash away Chalk Paint® and compromise the Lacquer if either hasn’t dried sufficiently before being exposed to water.
  • Don’t use Chalk Paint® Wax outdoors.
  • Do play with bright colours – being bold is easier outdoors.

If you’re in need of some extra confidence boosting before you commit paint to brush and brush to furniture – watch my quick video on using Chalk Paint® Lacquer on a metal garden chair here.



  1. Hi Annie, I am currently working on a piece that I would like to use outdoors. I am first sanding it to get back to the raw wood as I want to stain the piece. Would that also work with laquer seeing that we are in our raining season in Cape Town, South Africa?

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Hi Magda, Yes absolutely, are you using Chalk Paint to stain the piece? As long as you're using Chalk Paint with Chalk Paint Lacquer you'll be fine. Please refer to the information on the use of our Lacquer to ensure maximum protection.

  3. Hi Annie. Could you explain why we shouldn’t wax outdoor furniture? I’m guessing it’s cause lacquer provides better protection but I’m not sure if I’ll get it here in India.

    1. Hello, the main reason is that the Lacquer has UV protection within it whereas the wax does not.

  4. Hi annie love your paints.
    I have recently been focussing on outdoor furniture.

    I have a faded brown table n chair set.
    Can you please suggest what all I need along with chalk paints?

  5. Love your chalk paints and have done several upcycled furniture pieces in wood and metal. I am now wondering if this lacquer for outdoor would be appropriate to help me on my 3-season room. It has a plywood sub-floor that we have been struggling to determine a floorcovering - regular tile or laminate we feel will suffer from the winter cold/freezing temps and crack. I don't want carpet and because it is screened during part off the year it can get rained on. I want a surface I can mop clean as needed. Today when I read about lacquer I am inspired to chalk paint the plywood and use the lacquer as a top coat but your Do's and Don'ts outdoor chalk painting does not mention use on anything but furniture pieces. Please let me know if you recommend regular chalk paint with a 2-coat (or more?) lacquer top coat for my 3-season room plywood floor. I am so excited to do this so I hope to hear from you soon! thanks so much!

  6. Hi Annie,
    Can I use your Chalk Paint on Exterior Brick on my house? If so what are the steps involved? Do I need to Seal the paint?

  7. Hi Annie, I have some old concrete paving slabs in my garden which are was going to throw away but I decided to first try painting them. I read a blog recently that suggested painting patio slabs in masonry paint and then sealing with a tough sealant. Would chalk paint be a suitable alternative to masonry paint for paving slabs which will be walked on?

    1. Hello Becky! Chalk Paint® is fantastic on masonry and will not require a sealer out of doors, but if you would like to seal them, Annie Sloan Lacquer is a great outdoor sealer. -Jen at ASI

  8. Can I paint outdoor cushions and use them outside? Do I seal them with wax