Chalk paint. Chalked paint. Chalkboard paint.

There’s a lot of confusion out there with all of the paints with “chalk” in the title and reasonably so.  I love to paint and have dabbled with many paint lines yet still have many to try.

Let’s break it down a bit so you can choose the right paint for the job.


The first chalk paint I used was Annie Sloan.  There are other brands that I’ve used such as CeCe Caldwell and American Paint Company to name others.  There are quite a few companies out there and some boutiques sell their own brands.  All are natural, no harmful smells, water based and easy to use.

I’ve even made my own Chalk paint using water, paint and plaster of Paris.  The recipe I used was 1/3 cup plaster of Paris, 1/3 cup cool water mixed until smooth.  Add 1 cup latex in your color of choice and mix well.  Believe it or not this is enough paint to cover a 6 drawer dresser with one coat. Mix again for a 2nd coat and that’s likely all you need!  I’ve gone this route in small batches for small pieces and even on pumpkins at Halloween.

They all dry flat, matte and chalky looking.  The chalk/chalked/chalky paints do not contain any sealing agents. You can wipe off some paint on the edges with a wet rag or sand paper before sealing to distress the piece with little effort.

PRICE- $39.99 a quart of paint, $29.99 for the wax sealer

APPLICATION- no sanding or priming required. Clean your piece well and let it dry. Stir the can of paint well and paint on 2-3 thin coats will usually cover nicely. It does require a sealer and most chalk lines sell their own sealer next to the paint. One coat of wax will usually seal an occasional piece well but does require curing time. In the South and with high humidity that can take longer. Don’t sit paper or items that can stick to the top too soon.

RETAILERS- It’s often found in boutiques and of course Amazon.  Search the paint line with your zip code for local retailers.

I will confirm that a quart of chalk paint goes a shockingly long way.  For example I painted our master bedroom furniture with one quart.  It covered 2-3 coats on a long dresser (shown above), tall dresser and a hope chest (see chest below).

Typically when I buy paint I use it for multiple pieces.  I bought Annie Sloan Antibes Green for a dresser, two end tables as well as a tiny step stool.

The dresser and end tables are still going strong!

I used CeCe Caldwell’s chalk paint in Spring Hill Green on my rockers the first time I painted them.  One can covered 4 rockers that were previously black!  Isn’t that amazing?  A little truly goes a long way.


This is my latest craze and favorite by Rustoleum.  First of all it’s widely available for local purchase without shipping (or free shipping).  It covers very well and is as easy to use as any chalk paint for half the price.

I used Chalked in Charcoal on this wet bar in our house.  I wanted to rip it out when we first moved in but I’ve grown to love it now that it’s painted!

Same Charcoal color on our built in desk. I was not a fan of this built-in desk in the living room but again it has grown on me now that I have modified it a bit.

I painted all of my mudroom cabinets with Charcoal as well as the cabinets in 2 bathrooms.

I even used it on our front door here in Virginia!

It’s great for large…. and small projects. I painted this mirror with Charcoal.

Believe it or not I chose to use Chalked paint to paint this bathroom floor!

PRICE- $17.18 for 30 oz (just 2oz shy of a quart), $16.98 for sealer

APPLICATION- Same as above for chalk paint. Clean the surface. No sanding or priming required. 2-3 thin coats and the piece is well covered. The sealer dries lightening fast and there isn’t a curing time needed. Bonus- you can buy it in spray cans too!

RETAILERS-Walmart, True Value, Home Depot, Amazon (these are the ones I know of but surely there are others)


This is paint you can use to create a chalkboard surface to write on. I’ve used it on everything from walls to kitchen tables, margarita glasses to flower pots. It comes in multiple colors and you can even choose your own tint. I was a teacher and there’s something about a black chalkboard and white chalk that just gets me❤️

I painted a built-in ironing board in our mudroom with chalkboard paint and now we use it as a weekly calendar.

My kids loved our kitchen table in Florida that I painted with chalkboard paint. They would doodle with friends and even work out homework problems on it.

Again many brands are out there but I’m showing Rustoleum for reference.

PRICE- $16.00 for 30 Oz

APPLICATION-clean the surface. No sanding or prep. A few thin coats will cover it. Key is to prime the surface before writing on it. That means once the paint is dry you run over the entire surface with a piece of chalk lightly. Wipe off and you are ready to go!

RETAILERS-Walmart, True Value, Home Depot, Amazon (these are the ones I know of but surely there are others)

Black Dog Salvage has its own paint line with chalk like properties.

Price: $13.99 for a 1/2 pint

Retailer- the local Black Dog shop in Roanoke plus I found it on Amazon.

Below you can see my rockers that I repainted recently in Roanoke Rain.

I hope this clarified some of the paint differences for you.  There are so many options out there but they are user friendly.  I encourage you to give some a try 🙂

Laurel Dane Designs, LLC

DIY Blogger, Personal Organizer and Designer