Make Your Room Pop By Adding These Household Ingredients To Paint

eggshell paint

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Did you know you can take your paint to the next level by adding everyday household ingredients?

These simple additions not only change the texture but also make the paint more tactile, adding depth and interest to your walls.

Whether you’re sprucing up your home or working on an art project, experimenting with household ingredients can elevate your painting game and add a professional touch to your work.

Baking Soda – Textured, Matte Finish

Mixing baking soda into paint changes its glossy finish to a matte one. This gives your project a soft or rustic look.

To do this, add one tablespoon of baking soda for every cup of paint and mix thoroughly. Apply the paint with a roller or brush, and you’ll notice the textured effect it creates.

This technique works best for smaller decorative projects like picture frames, furniture, or accent pieces. For a vintage touch, use it to refinish old furniture.

However, it may be too much for larger projects or walls, as it can make them look busy. Additionally, the textured surface tends to collect dust, making it difficult to clean.

Fine Sand – Gritty Texture

Mixing fine sand into your paint changes its texture, giving it a gritty finish. This adds dimension to your paint project, making it visually interesting and tactile.

To do this, combine 1 cup of fine sand with 4 cups of paint, stirring thoroughly to ensure even distribution. Keep in mind that the mixture will be thicker, requiring more effort to achieve an even layer when applied with a brush or roller.

The gritty texture makes this type of paint ideal for projects that need a rustic appearance and enhanced grip, such as outdoor furniture, stairs, and flooring.

It also improves traction on handrails and provides a non-slip surface for your porch. You can even use it to revitalize garden pots or outdoor decorations, adding both texture and durability to withstand various weather conditions.

However, avoid using sand-infused paint on large indoor walls as it can be difficult to clean and may feel too rough to the touch.

Cornstarch or Flour – Thicker Texture


Here’s an unusual tip: you can use cornstarch or flour to thicken your paint and give it more texture. This trick not only saves time by requiring fewer coats but also speeds up your project. If you’re out of cornstarch, flour works just as well.

To do this, mix 2 tablespoons of cornstarch or flour with 1½ cups of water and heat until it thickens. Let it cool, then slowly add it to your paint while stirring to avoid lumps until you reach the desired thickness.

When you apply the thickened paint, you’ll find it easier to achieve a smooth, streak-free finish, perfect for hiding minor imperfections.

This thickened paint is great for small DIY projects like painting decorations, canvases, or furniture that requires detailed work or a slightly textured appearance.

However, it may not be suitable for exterior surfaces or large walls, as the added texture can make it challenging to achieve even coverage and may result in a patchy finish. Additionally, the benefits of thick paint are less noticeable on larger areas and can lead to paint wastage.

Finely Crushed Eggshells – Subtle Speckled Texture


You might already know that eggshells can be used as fertilizer in your garden, but did you know that adding finely crushed eggshells to your paint can create a beautiful speckled texture?

Not only does this technique add depth and elegance to your paint, but it also gives your walls a unique look with a subtle roughness that catches the light.

To try it out, start by cleaning and drying your eggshells, then crush them into a coarse powder. Gradually mix the crushed eggshells into your paint, stirring well after each addition until you achieve the desired effect.

This speckled texture works wonders for decorative items or accent pieces in your home, such as lamp bases, vases, or picture frames, where it can complement your décor without overpowering it.

The textured surface shines indoors, especially in areas with natural light that can highlight its beauty.

It’s also perfect for artwork or feature walls in smaller rooms, where you can appreciate the texture up close. However, if you cover a large area, like an entire wall, the fine details may be lost, and the texture could attract dirt and dust in high-traffic areas.

Ground Cinnamon – Faux Rust Effect


This technique gives your surfaces an aged, warm, vintage appearance, resembling rust without any actual damage. It’s a safe and versatile way to add character to your décor.

To try it out, start by applying a light layer of paint to your desired surface. While the paint is still wet, sprinkle cinnamon over it. Adjusting the ratio of cinnamon to paint will give you different shades, ranging from sandy and light to dark and gritty. For a more authentic look, apply your paint in layers using a brush or sponge, and seal it once finished.

This antique rust effect is perfect for themed rooms and works well on metal garden decorations, furniture, frames, or accent walls. The texture and warmth created by this paint technique add a cozy, vintage-inspired vibe to your space, making items like metal lamp bases, decorative bowls or trays, and wooden picture frames look weathered and aged.

While it can also enhance larger walls, its impact is more noticeable on smaller objects where you can appreciate the fine details. Using it on an entire room may overwhelm the space and diminish the subtlety of the faux rust texture.

Lemon Juice – Adjust Paint Color


Lemon juice can alter the color of your paint by adding acidity and lightening properties, allowing you to adjust colors without buying more paint.

This method is handy for toning down overly bright colors or achieving a slightly aged appearance.

Simply add a few drops of lemon juice to your paint and mix thoroughly. The acid in the lemon juice reacts with the paint, gradually lightening it. Test the new color after each addition on a small area to see the effect.

The gradual color change caused by lemon juice makes it perfect for art projects, detailed painting tasks, or furniture restoration.

For instance, if you’re repainting furniture to match a specific theme or achieve a vintage look, lemon juice can help adjust the paint color accordingly.

It’s also useful for decorative painting or mural projects where subtle shade changes enhance realism and depth.

However, it may be challenging to notice the subtle differences when painting entire rooms or exteriors. The color change is more noticeable in smaller, detailed projects.

Salt – Speckled, Mottled Effect With Watercolor Paint

Photo by Marta Dzedyshko

When you add salt to watercolors, it creates a speckled or mottled effect that adds texture to your artwork. This occurs because salt absorbs water, causing the areas around it to dry with brighter colors.

To achieve this effect, paint your paper with watercolors and sprinkle salt over the wet paint. Fine table salt creates intricate, smaller patterns, while coarse sea salt produces larger, more distinct speckles.

After allowing the paint to dry, brush off the excess salt to reveal the textured result.

Using salt is ideal for small-scale watercolor projects such as drawings, greeting cards, or detailed sections of larger paintings. The textured effect can replicate starry skies, rough road surfaces, or sea spray bubbles, adding realistic details to landscape projects.

Applying salt to smaller projects gives you greater control over the final appearance and allows you to emphasize specific areas to attract attention.

However, it’s not suitable for large background areas or areas where a smooth finish is desired, as it can create a busy appearance.

Sawdust – Thicker, Wood-Like Texture

Adding sawdust to your paint thickens it and creates a distinctive wood-like texture, perfect for achieving faux wood finishes or adding a subtle tactile quality to your project. It’s an easy and effective way to achieve a rustic feel.

Simply mix fine sawdust into your paint using a ratio of 1 cup of sawdust to 2 cups of paint. Stir until the sawdust is evenly distributed and the mixture is thick enough to cling to your brush without dripping. Start with a small amount of sawdust and gradually add more for a grittier texture.

Apply the paint with a roller or brush, following the woodgrain pattern for a natural look.

Paint mixed with sawdust is ideal for projects where you want to replicate the appearance of real wood, such as paneling, decorative items, or furniture.

It’s great for giving old pieces a warmer, more organic feel, especially plastic or metal furniture that needs refurbishing.

Additionally, applying sawdust-infused paint to outdoor decorations or planters can add a rustic touch to your garden.

However, the rough texture tends to collect dust. Achieving a uniform look may also be more difficult, so it’s best suited for smaller, targeted areas.

Rubbing Alcohol – Abstract Splatter Effect


When you mix rubbing alcohol with paint, you create a cool splatter effect that lets you make fluid, abstract patterns resembling marble.

To achieve this look, lightly spray or drop rubbing alcohol onto wet paint. The alcohol repels the paint, causing it to separate and form various patterns. The outcome depends on how you apply it and the concentration of the rubbing alcohol.

For precise effects, use a brush or dropper to place it where you want splatters or textured designs. For a more random pattern, use a spray bottle. Experimenting with different concentrations and tools gives you a wide range of results.

This technique is best suited for small projects like handmade cards, canvas paintings, or crafts, where you can appreciate the intricate patterns.

It’s perfect for creating focal points in your artwork or adding an element of surprise to your design. It works well for backgrounds or adding texture to flat surfaces without overshadowing the main subject.

However, it’s not practical for large areas like walls. Applying the intricate splatter effect over a large surface is time-consuming and may not have the desired impact. Additionally, the finished product can appear chaotic and overwhelm the space.

Glitter – Soft Sparkly Effect


Adding glitter to paint gives it a shimmering effect that catches the light, adding a playful and magical touch. You can mix the glitter directly into the paint or sprinkle it over wet paint after applying it to your desired surface.

Use fine glitter for a subtle sparkle or larger glitter for a more pronounced effect. Start with a small amount, roughly 1 to 2 ounces per gallon of paint, and gradually increase until you achieve your desired look.

Thoroughly stir the mixture to ensure the glitter is evenly distributed throughout the paint.

Glitter paint is ideal for highlighting smaller interior features such as decorative trim or children’s furniture, adding a touch of sparkle without overpowering the space.

It works well on items like picture frames, shelves, or lamp bases, providing a playful yet elegant aesthetic depending on the amount of glitter and paint color used.

However, covering an entire wall with glitter paint can be overwhelming for most home decor styles, creating a flashy and cluttered appearance. Focusing on smaller areas allows you to tastefully enhance your room’s atmosphere with subtle sparkle.

Turmeric or Paprika – Bold, Warm Color


Mixing turmeric or paprika into light-colored paint gives your projects warm, earthy tones that traditional paint pigments can’t replicate.

Start by adding a few tablespoons of your chosen spice to the paint, gradually increasing until you achieve the desired shade.

Keep in mind that the final color may differ significantly from the original, so test the mixture after each tablespoon and take notes on the results.

This method is perfect for painting decorative items, accent walls, or focal pieces in any room where you want to add warmth and natural color to your decor.

It’s also ideal for adding character to canvas art, handmade pottery, or wooden furniture, complementing rustic, bohemian, or eclectic styles.

However, because organic materials are used to color the paint, it’s not suitable for outdoor use or environments with high humidity, as the color may fade over time or develop an undesirable hue.

Used Coffee Grounds – Granular Texture, Earthy Tint

What happens when you mix coffee grounds with paint? You create a textured finish with earthy tones and visual depth that regular paint can’t match.

Start by adding a small amount of dry coffee grounds to the paint, gradually increasing until you achieve the desired color.

Make sure the grounds are completely dry to avoid adding moisture to the paint and thinning it out. This allows you to repurpose used coffee grounds in an eco-friendly way while achieving a rustic, earthy look for your projects.

Paint infused with coffee grounds is perfect for projects that call for an aged or rustic appearance, such as frames, wooden furniture, or crafts.

The subtle texture enhances the sensory experience, particularly where tactile feel is desired.

However, be cautious not to add too much of this paint or cover large surfaces, as they may require frequent cleaning due to dust accumulation.

Additionally, excessive use of coffee-infused paint may overwhelm a space, so it’s best to stick to smaller, decorative touches.

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