.How To Paint Cinder Block.

The blog has been rather quiet this month because Adam and I actually completed a few house projects! Crossing items off our forever to-do list is seriously the greatest.feeling.ever. Well..I'm sure getting a new job, buying a house, getting married, or having a baby is better cause for that term but hey--at our stage of life, completed house projects are reason enough!

Adam and I tackled a big project the other day, I'll let you guess by looking at this image:
Any ugliness jump out at you?

Oh..you noticed some uneven clay stained cinder blocks?--Funny, we saw that too!

The good news for us, that ugly cinder block is now gone :) I'm going to share the process of how we painted it to simply inform those of you who are new to this 'home owner thing' like us and have ugly cinder block around so we can all learn together.

Materials needed:

- Pressure washer (If you do not own one, ask family and friends)
- Scotch Blue Painters Tape
- Paint rollers of your choice (We purchased the biggest/fluffiest roller from Home Depot made for   
  extremely rough/coarse surfaces and it did not work as well as the cheap smaller roller you would use 
  for an interior. We found the smaller one filled in the tiny holes better in the cinder blocks despite the 
  larger one being designed for that very thing. Strange but true!)
- Paint sticks to stir
- Paint trays to roll
- Paint holder for cutting in and for rolling
- Small brush to cut in primer and paint
- Pocket knife/kitchen knife/ or razor blade (I used a sharp little kitchen knife)
- Drop cloths/old sheets/lawn tarps (In our case we used all three!)
(Buy gallons of paint/primer according to the size of your project, not by the links I have shared)
Getting Started:

1. Before beginning any painting, there is prep work to be done. First prepare the outside area by 
     blowing or sweeping loose debris on the ground.
2. Using your pressure washer, clean the existing cinder blocks to remove all dirt and mildew. Allow 
     to dry completely.
    Tip: Depending on the condition of your cinder block, you may
    have to scrape off old chipping paint or use chemical solutions  
    along with your power washer to remove excess mold and
3. Tape along the bottom of your cinder block wall and the ground using Blue Painter's Tape. 
    Tip: I recommend using a dish towel or old t-shirt to help
    reinforce the seal of the tape to the ground. It will not be perfect
    since you are working with bumpy surfaces but do your very 
    best and take your time.
4. Lay a drop cloth down to protect the ground/pavement/concrete. 
5. Using your small brush, begin cutting in with the primer.
    Tip: For your first coat of primer during cutting in, do not apply 
    too heavy or paint will "glop" and may sink under the tape. Do
    two thin coats of primer for your cutting in and then later on you
    can apply a heavier/thicker coat of your actual paint because the 
    primer will act as a sealer and not allow any paint to drip under 
6. Begin rolling your primer onto the cinder blocks.
    Tip: Like I mentioned earlier, we preferred using the smaller 
    roller instead of the thicker one designed for painting rough 
    surfaces. We felt the smaller one filled in more of the tiny holes
    in the cinder block. Please use whatever you like best and works 
    well for you.
(I had to include this photo because it made me laugh out loud. This is my face saying to Adam, "Make sure you are only getting the roller and not me!" Bah, he is such a stinker. Enjoy friends!)

7. After completing your first coat of primer, allow walls to dry. 
    Tip: Wait for at least an hour if you are using KILZ and if it is 
    a different brand wait longer and do as the label suggests. We 
    played it extra safe and let it fully dry over night. Apply a 
    second coat if needed. We bought paint and primer in one so we 
    opted not to do a second coat.
8. Repeat steps 5-7 using your paint.
(Notice in the photo above I already cut in along the bottom and in any of the corner/creases before Adam rolled on the first coat of paint.)

9. When the first coat is complete, inspect the job and coverage. Use your small brush from cutting in 
     to fill in any white primer holes bleeding through that were missed.
    Tip: Apply a generous amount of paint onto your brush and 
    "smush/poke/dab" your brush into the holes. Your brush will 
    look like it's dancing with a full twirl included :)
10. Once paint has dried, apply second coat.
      Tip: Remember to cut in with your second coat before rolling.
11. Using your small razor blade or kitchen knife, score a line between your tape and cinder block 
       wall. This will guarantee the paint does not peel off with the tape. Remove your tape.
      Tip: Remove tape on an angle and at a consistent speed.
12. Clean up your painting area and brushes/rollers.
13. Enjoy your hard work!

I adore the picture above because you can see the ugly cinder block in the background plus a little pup's bottom. Great reminder why DIY-ing is worth it! And now you know our next project for this weekend. Oh--in case you were wondering, Colden approves ;)
Ugly cinder block in background and pretty painted cinder block in foreground!
We adore the color Cathedral Gray. At night it is a rich gray and during the day with the sun light reflecting off of our fence and deck, it has a nice warmth to it--almost beige like.

It's perfect!

(linking up to a few parties)

Happy Living--Happy Priming and Painting
and remember
--Little Things Bring Smiles--


  1. Looks great! Love the roller only photo! :)

  2. Wow! I can't believe that transformation! You guys must never want to go inside!

  3. Oh my gosh! Great job! And woo-hoo for power washers. I just scrubbed down my wood patio furniture by hand and the mildrew was disgusting. Guys it really works. Use this power washer. :) Be clean be happy!!

  4. Love your work! And yeah, the color becomes beige or sort of yellow when reflected by sunlight. Totally neat. Try creating a small gazebo outside your house. It's pretty wide, your house would look great with some soil outside.

  5. Nice work with that block there. It's got more life now, thanks to that new coating. Now, it's time to get that interior overhauled!

  6. I thought the grey was a bit dull at first, but after a second look, it actually looks good on the block. Maybe I could use it as a color scheme for my own room and the fixtures I'm going to put in it.

  7. Great job! Would love to see the "after" picture beside the main "before" pic for dramatic impact !

  8. No one said anything about prewashing with acid, is such a thing really necessary ?

  9. Thanks for this awesome posting on the concrete curing process which is given by the curing compound manufacturer in India that is the speciality offering technique.

  10. I really appreciate your post. It gives an outstanding idea that is very helpful for all the people on the web. Thanks for sharing this information and I’ll love to read your next post too.Best paving and masonry 

  11. I'm a painter who recently started doing my own jobs and I descoverd their is no such thing as paint plus primer. (Duration) for example is just really thick paint and its only made for surfaces that have already been primered. Other whise it my peel.Its really false abratisement and a big joke to me.so my question is now that time has passed, how well did the paint and primer in one hold up since you all never actually primered the surface?

  12. What kind of paint did you use? Was it especially for concrete?

  13. Anonymous must be a brilliant painter, if he cannot even spell/speak correctly I would never hire him to paint anything I own, sorry

  14. What breed of dog do you have

    1. Why that's a Shiba Inu, the most popular dog in Japan.

    2. Why that's a Shiba Inu, the most popular dog in Japan.

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  16. What were the tips and guidelines to paint cinder block. Really like your writing style. I am looking forward to reading new articles. Thank you!

  17. Thanks for sharing great tips. A properly painted concrete block wall will be virtually maintenance free for many years, but the same wall not properly painted can be a maintenance nightmare. There are just a few critical differences between a good and a bad paint job.