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11 Things You Should Never Paint

Before you try to touch up that favorite bowl or change the color of your kitchen counters, put the paint down. Here are 11 things you should never paint.

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Never Paint DishesLia_t/Shutterstock

Never Paint Dishes

Even high-quality paint contains toxic chemicals that shouldn't be ingested. Trying to fix a chipped plate or cracked serving bowl with paint may be tempting, but it's not food safe so never paint them.
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FaucetsAfrica Studio/Shutterstock


When applied to a surface that frequently comes in contact with water, most paint can chip, which you don't want in your water. And painting may seem like an easy way to update the look of faucet, but faucets are relatively inexpensive. Instead of risking chipped paint for a new look, just replace the faucet.
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Kitchen AppliancesVereshchagin Dmitry/Shutterstock

Kitchen Appliances

Paint can add a bold punch of color to your kitchen, but most paints aren't heat-resistant or food-safe. If you want to update the color of your kitchen, keep paint to walls, know how to paint kitchen cabinets and furniture. And never paint appliances. Keep the paint away from ovens, refrigerators, microwaves, toasters and dishwashers. It's simply a bad idea.
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ElectronicsEugenio Marongiu/Shutterstock


A vibrant green laptop or hot pink tablet may be appealing, but never paint electronics. You can get paint in openings and damage the machine. Also, you can protect your electronics by installing a whole house surge protector.
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Pots and PansBrooke Becker/Shutterstock

Pots and Pans

If your pots and pans are on display, never paint them to try and  fix the chipped enamel on your Teflon or nonstick pan. Since paint isn't food safe, toss your pots and pans at the first sight of peeling paint.
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CountertopsAtstock Productions/Shutterstock


It can be tempting to paint countertops to repair a scratch or if you're looking for a new look in the kitchen or bathroom, but paint isn't the answer. Most countertop surfaces are difficult to paint correctly and food can easily stain painted surfaces.
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TileDD Images/Shutterstock


Painting tile in the bathroom or along a kitchen backsplash seems like an easy way to update the room, but painting tile is tricky and messy. Plus, paint can easily chip when constantly exposed to moisture, so it's a good idea never to paint it.
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The PianoMongkol Foto/Shutterstock

The Piano

Instead of painting the living room piano to update the room's look, try painting shelves or wood furniture. Paint can clog keys and may seal shut a panel that is used to access the instrument's mechanics.
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Fabric FurnitureStockLite/Shutterstock

Fabric Furniture

While using paint to refinish old wood furniture is an option, never paint on fabric sofas and chairs. Fabric soaks up paint and it will just create a big mess. Plus, when it finally dries, it will feel like sandpaper.
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FlatwareHenrik Dolle/Shutterstock


Never paint anything that will come into contact with food or your mouth. Painting just the handles of flatware should also be nixed, as the paint can easily chip and get into your food. And try using lemon if your flatware needs polishing.
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Shower Door FramesArtazum/Shutterstock

Shower Door Frames

Since shower doors are constantly exposed to moisture, it won't be long before the paint starts to chip away. There are ways to protect your shower doors from buildup, so never paint your shower frames.

Rachel Brougham
Rachel Brougham lived through a major home renovation in 2019, knows the ups and downs of home improvement, and loves sharing tips with readers. A veteran journalist of both print and television, she’s won several awards for her writing and has covered everything from the environment and education to health care, politics and food. She’s written for several publications beyond newspapers including Bob Vila, Taste of Home and Minnesota Parent, and she currently writes a weekly syndicated newspaper column. Her memoir, Widowland, about the sudden loss of her husband, was published in 2022. She specializes in everything from home decor and design to lawn and garden, product reviews and pet care. When she’s not writing, you can usually find her tending to her garden (both vegetables and native plants), playing with her dog, watching sports with her family or getting some exercise. A native of Michigan, she currently lives in Minneapolis. An avid user of Instagram, you can follow her @RachBrougham.