Your shower walls can undoubtedly benefit from bathroom-safe, waterproof paints.
Sadly, ordinary paint products may only damage your shower tiles and walls– as these cannot protect against water damage or damp weather.
Thanks to many advancements in the market, you may even find specific waterproof paint designs for shower tiles in the form of latex enamel, oil-based enamel, or specialty bathroom paint. (Related: Here's How to Seal Your Home's Foundation)
To help you make an informed decision, let’s discuss what you should look for in choosing waterproof paint for shower use (and some top picks to consider!)
What is Waterproofing Paint?
Also known as hydrophobic coating/paint, waterproof paint is designed to be 100% water repellent for showers.
After applying it onto your walls– the paint provides a defensive, protective layer to protect it from water damage. Every time the water hits the surface, it will run off instead of seeping into the concrete. It prevents the likelihood of wall stains.
Some experts also suggest that waterproof paints act as an insulator for your shower, making the walls less likely to be damp.
Key Considerations in Choosing a Waterproof Paint for your Shower
If you’re clueless on what to consider in picking a commercial waterproof paint for shower use– we’ve got you covered.
Paint Type - In general, you can choose from water-based or oil-based waterproof paints. Homeowners who prioritize the longevity of the color can benefit from choosing water-based paint. Whereas those who’d like aesthetic appeal can choose oil-based paints as it gives off vibrant hues. Nonetheless, both paint types can provide you with adequate moisture protection.
Paint Form - Think of liquid membranes as thin sheets which you can simply attach to the surface. Meanwhile, spray paint forms can be used as typical household spray paint. Remember that these paints often take around 1 to 3 days to cure fully.
Longevity - It’s best to invest in waterproof paints that give you value for your money. You wouldn’t want to keep repainting your shower walls and tiles now and then– this will be costly on your end. That said, the most expensive waterproof paints do not automatically equate to higher durability. It’s best to consult a well-versed professional in waterproofing painting services to get more information. Remember, it’s ideal to follow an expert’s advice for any painting job at home to ensure its success.
Paint Finish - Waterproof paints for shower use also have a unique finish, much like any other paint. To name a few, you can choose from glossy, matte, semi-matte, or satin finishes.
Drying Time - Since you’re only covering a small area (shower space), you will benefit more in choosing paints with rapid drying times. Some of these paints, such as the spray form, may dry as fast as 15 minutes. On average, it takes around 1 to 3 hours to completely dry.
Versatility - Always make it a priority to check the versatility of your waterproof paint application. Some paints are best used for ceramic surfaces, while others are better used on concrete (or other materials).
Eco-friendly - Some waterproof paints may have potentially harmful ingredients which may cause irritation or other health issues. Choose paints with no additives, surfactants, or VOC for your safety. These paints are also notably more environment friendly.
Container - Determine if you need to purchase large-sized paint containers (5 gallons) or small containers (oz size or 1 gallon) for your shower painting project. Choose larger paint sizes if you intend to use waterproof paint for other applications. In contrast, smaller containers are best for one-time applications.
Total Price - Of course, it’s best to choose a waterproof paint that meets your budget. In this case, we often see larger containers being more cost-effective than smaller ones. It is something you might want to take into consideration.
5 Top Waterproof Paint Options for Shower Use
Here are top picks for the best waterproof paint for shower tiles/walls:
If you want waterproof paint that will keep your shower decks, liners, and fence dry and always protected– this option is for you!
The Liquid Rubber Foundation and Basement Sealant are also renowned for their flexibility. It gives you a final membrane that features high elasticity– reducing the chances of cracks or taring.
Here’s what we particularly love about this product:
- For each coat, you get a moderate flat surface coverage of 50 sq ft per gallon.
- It has easy application with the use of w roller brush or a piston paint sprayer.
- It is a water-based paint with no solvents or VOCs.
- This waterproof paint has either indoor or outdoor use
- To ensure your safety, it is non-flammable
This water-based, mold-resistant paint is an excellent option for your next painting project at home. Aside from the shower, you may also use any leftover paint for your basement/foundation or any interior walls.
Let’s discuss the many benefits of this waterproof paint:
- This quick-dry waterproof paint may also be used on brick.
- It features a natural alkali resistance of up to pH-13.
- There are many practical application tips included on the can for your reference.
- It is an eco-friendly waterproof paint choice for shower use.
- It’s cost-effective (compared to other options on the market).
This next option is another excellent waterproof paint option for your shower walls. The acrylic polymer-based membranes are ideal for coating and sealing your shower tiles.
Here’s what we love about the USG DUROCK:
- Due to its acrylic polymer-based membrane, it effectively resists fading or staining.
- It offers an added layer of protection to your shower ceiling and drywall.
- This paint meets IPC and UPC rules for wall proofing.
- With its low permeance, you can count on its longevity.
- It is relatively easy to apply.
Are you looking for affordable, multi-color waterproof paint? KILZ paint is a great option to consider.
Below are the many benefits of KILZ waterproof paint:
- It offers a barrier to prevent water infiltration.
- The alkali-resistant coating gives you a longer-lasting surface finish.
This paint can be easy to apply, given your shower doesn’t have any water leaks.
- It offers good area coverage. A 1-gallon paint can cover 75 - 135 sq ft of shower areas.
Although it needs a minimum of two coats, it gives you a more excellent value for your money than other alternatives in the market.
- This paint is quick-drying. Wait for 1 hour, then apply the next coat after 4 hours.
If you want one of the best waterproofing paints for shower tiles– look no further! The Rust-Oleum specialty paint is a great option to consider.
Here’s what we love about the product:
The small 12 oz bottle makes for easy spraying on specific spots.
It is best for curing any bathroom imperfections or stains/color changes.
The glossy, smooth finish is uplifting to look at as you take a shower.
It has a quick drying time to finish your painting project fast.
Why Do You Need a Good Waterproof Paint for Showers?
With consistently damp bathrooms, you should prioritize proper moisture control in applying new paint to your shower walls.
For your guidance, moisture can affect your bathroom walls in two ways. First, steam-filled showers can cause damp air to gather on the walls. There are also frequent water flashes on the walls from your bathtub or sink.
Once this moisture successfully penetrates the shower paint layer, it may damage the paint after direct contact with the drywall or plaster beneath it.
Possible effects include paint peeling or possible mold formation. If your paint layer is less absorbent, a lesser amount of moisture may penetrate the material.