Paint & Products

Why I love General Finishes Top Coat Over Chalk Paint

-I love it so much I bought a bunch to sell-

The first attraction to General Finishes Top Coats was the sheen choices, specifically FLAT. Until I heard about it, I was stuck in satin sheen land and not loving it. The main attraction of painted furniture is the matte look of chalk paint. Using wax was the only other option to get that non-shiny look and I do not like applying it at all!

My Wish List for Best Top Coat

  • Water Based,
  • Flat Sheen, I mean FLAT
  • Not so thin in foams up like spit,
  • Not so thick ya can’t get an even stroke,
  • Long enough wet edge for minimal brush marks (how porous of chalk paint used makes a difference),
  • Durable to take regular household wear,

No more searching for the right topcoat to use on my painted furniture. GF Flat is the only product I buy now. It meets everything on my wish list, just sayin’.

Available now at Painted Plethora Jackson MI

Roots & Wings Furniture LLC

Stories About Other Brands I’ve Tried

My experience with over-the-counter brands was very hopeful to start but turned into disappointment over time. Min-wax Polycrylic only comes in satin but even so, its wet edge over chalk paint is super short, meaning significant stroke marks were left behind.

I fought those things trying everything I could think of to minimize them and still not liking the sheen, so I tried the next product that came out; Rust-o-leum Chalked Top Coat. Again, an over-the-counter product saves money so I was excited it came in Flat finish! Super hopeful again thinking I had found top coat mecca until I used it on a piece with lots of edges and detail.

Black, Copper, Wine Bar, Painted TV Cabinet, Jackson MI

I wish I had a picture of the horrifying white foam that looked the spit that developed in the corners. The brush movement in corners and edges caused the product to foam up like meringue. I got rid of most of it but some remained looking like spit after it dried. The only thing that saved me was having a black piece and using a black marker to cover the white spit. Ug, never again.

A friend recommended Gator Hide by Dixie Belle but before I could try it, she recanted the advise. It is a terrific product for durability, but it applies thick and hard to work with, thick and thin areas. I’ve also used Country Chalk Defender of which I have nothing bad to say except it is difficult to locate for purchase.

2 thoughts on “Why I love General Finishes Top Coat Over Chalk Paint

  1. Hello, My name is Kelly Sharrer. My daughter is wanting to paint her existing kitchen cabinets. So you have the Milk paint and finishes for sale in your store? If yes are you open tomorrow at all? We wanted to get started tomorrow morning. Can you email me or show me a text? 517-914-6066.
    Thanks so much! Kelly. Also is your name Kelly Miller? If yes did you graduate from Jackson High in 1985?

  2. Kelly – thanks for the great question. GF Milk Paint is excellent and highly recommended for kitchen cabinets/cupboards. It’s a tough mineral acrylic paint which is why it’s best for your application. It was made for woodworkers and cabinet makers. It’s smooth not gritty like chalk paint. It is not latex – which tends to peel and is softer. Get it at Painted Plethora located 1208 Wildwood, open Saturdays 10-5.

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