How to paint over dark colours: expert tips for decorating success

Roller putting white paint on blue wall
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Painting over dark colours in your home isn’t as simple as slapping on another coat of paint. If you don’t prepare correctly and invest in the right paint you will be adding a lot more layers than you want. 

When painting a wall, window, or door covered in a dark colour, it needs to be prepared correctly. You will be adding at least three coats of paint, and if your prep is poor it won’t be long before it's bubbling and flaking. Then you need to ensure that you have the right paint to hide the dark colour you no longer want.

Here we run through how to prep and paint your surfaces, recommend the best paints for the job and offer some alternative solutions.  

Steve Jenkins

Steve Jenkins is a freelance content creator with over two decades of experience working in digital and print and was previously the DIY content editor for Homebuilding & Renovating. 

He is a keen DIYer with over 20 years of experience in transforming and renovating the many homes he has lived in. He specialises in painting and decorating, but has a wide range of skills gleaned from working in the building trade for around 10 years and spending time at night school learning how to plaster and plumb.

He has fitted kitchens, tiled bathrooms and kitchens, laid many floors, built partition walls, plastered walls, plumbed in bathrooms, worked on loft conversions and much more. And when he's not sure how to tackle a DIY project he has a wide network of friends – including plumbers, gas engineers, tilers, carpenters, painters and decorators, electricians and builders – in the trade to call upon.