How to Give Your Backsplash a Makeover for Less Than $50

There are many reasons why you need to replace the old backsplash installed in your kitchen. The once vibrant colors of the tiles may have gone dull, the smooth surface could have some cracks or scratches, or grout that holds them together could have chipped off leaving it unstable. No matter the reason, most people fear the time when they need to install a new backsplash. For one, it could cost you several hundreds of dollars for the new tiles of your backsplash. Another concern is how long it may take you to install the new backsplash especially if you’re not equipped with the skills and tools to do it.



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Nevertheless, there’s a simple way of giving your backsplash a needed makeover without all the fuss and minus the big spending. This article can teach you how to make your worn-down backsplash have the brand-new faux-stone look for less than $50.


What You Need:

Sample tiles (old tiles you have lying around at home would be enough)

Grout stain

Artist’s oil paints (preferably Payne’s Grey, Raw Umber and Zinc White though the option still depends on you)

Pigmented shellac primer (preferably B-I-N)

1 quart clear alkyd glaze (preferably Benjamin Moore’s 409)

Artist’s brushes

Palm sander with 100-grit sanding disks

Roller, foam roller cover and paint tray

Disposable latex or vinyl gloves


Masking tape




Step 1: Take the Test

Get some sample tiles or the old tiles you already have at home and experiment on them. Apply primer and perform different styles using the brushes, glaze, and artist’s oil to come up with a texture and color you like.


Step 2: Prepare the Old Backsplash

Using a palm sander with a 100-grit disk, sand the surface of your old backsplash until the current glaze has somewhat dulled. This will improve the adhesion of the primer. Once you’ve sanded the entire surface of the backsplash, apply three coats of primer.


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Step 3: Initial Coating

Cover the countertop with brown paper and secure it with masking tape. This will protect it from and spills and stains. You can then take one clean rag and apply the primary coat of glaze over the surface of the backsplash. To achieve the look of stone, stick to earth tones such as different shades of brown or gray.

Step 4:  Returning to the Old – Take another clean rag and wipe off most of the primary glaze you applied earlier. This will leave a blue-gray tint combined with the original color of your old backsplash. To create a more realistic feel, add several thin layers of glaze instead of heavy coats.


Step 5: Painting and Glazing

Once the first coat of glaze has dried completely, mix the oil paint color of your choice with glaze. Take a rage and make several folds then apply a small amount of the mixture on it. Apply about 60% of glaze coat on each tile for the second coating. The amount should be enough to combine it well with the primary coat you made earlier or is fully replaced by the main color of your choice.


Step 6: Experiment with Paint

Take a long-bristled artist’s brush known as the script brush, and drag it across the surface of the tile. This will lessen the oil color while increasing the glaze to create the veins or mineral streaks effect. Another option is to use a stippling brush to paint small dots. If you find any mistakes or unpainted gaps, you can use a small painter’s brush to make the corrections.


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Step 7: Add Finishing Touches

To complete the “stony” appeal, paint the grout on your backsplash with a shade that goes well with your main colors. A mid-tone color would be the best choice for this.


Author Bio:

Roberta Madison loves her job as Marketing Manager at, which sells high-quality glass tiles and other tile products. She believes that it is through excellence and hard work that one can deliver results. Follow Roberta Madison on G+.

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