How to Paint/Hide Electrical Outlets and Plates

Hello my friends!

I just finished painting all my electrical outlets because I kept looking in my kitchen and thought, wow, having all those white outlets on my stone back splash really makes things look busy,  I need to CAMOUFLAGE them.

I am SOOOOO happy I did!  The kitchen really looks uncluttered now, it was just a fun custom final touch.

So let me give you a full tutorial on how to camouflage your own outlets.

1.) First take the outlets off the wall.

2.) Sand down the outlets just to roughen them up a bit to take off that super shiny top coat.

3.) You can now prime the outlets with a white (or grey if you are going dark) primer.  You can purchase spray primer at any home improvement store or off the internet.  I'll be honest with you guys, I didn't prime my outlets because I'm bad.  I think they will be fine, but to be on the safe side, I wanted to tell you what you SHOULD do.  

4.) Place the outlets back on the wall with your hand and mark in any grout lines with a pencil (that is, if you have grout lines)

5.) Next coat the entire plate with an acrylic craft paint that matches the base of your tile.  You want the undertone to match exactly, so really be sure and find a color that does that.

6.) If you have a textured tile, start dabbing on other colors with a brush and play around with the shades until you have matched the look of your tile.  If you have a smooth tile, be sure and use a larger brush and do smooth stokes and not a lot of them.

I tell everyone, painting over things it's just like painting your nails, it takes some time and patience to do it correctly but just think of the perfect manicure and you'll be on your way to perfect painting!

Take a look at what I mean.......

begin with buffing

base coating


don't let the layers get to thick

dry between coats

putting on the top clear coat that seals in the color

maybe multiple top coats which once again include drying between coats and not getting it too thick!

Seriously, it's just nails ladies....and if you are a man reading this ignore that entire paragraph!

7.) After your outlet has thoroughly dried, you can apply a matte varnish if your tile is matte (not shiny) or a glossy varnish if the tile (or granite) is shiny.  You can purchase this in a spray can or a regular paint can.  This is where I would recommend putting on a few (2-3) coats and drying between the coats.  You can also buy a polycrylic (it's similar to  varnish) sealer and spray that over the paint too....whatever you want.

Take your time folks......I'm horrible at taking time but I know it's best to do it right so don't rush the painting steps above.  (think nails.....ha!)

8.) Screw back on the outlets, touch up the center screw with a dab of paint to match.

NOTE: From all my research, they recommend  NOT PAINTING the actual plug in.  If any paint gets into those holes, it can make it very difficult to plug things in it, but not only that, it can be a fire hazard!

That's it!!  Let's see some Before and After Photos.


It looks so much cleaner and not all busy.  Worth the time it took :-)

The outlets on the Granite.....

Here is a Final Photo of the Kitchen. (from here you can't see any outlets!)

Do you think you'll do it to some of your outlets?
Has anyone done this already to their own home and have some more tips?  Leave me a comment!

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  1. I have done them before and they turn out great! Fantastic way to blend them in and get a nicer look.

  2. Hi Selina,
    I got your comment and you were right, do NOT paint the plug in part. I painted one and it just got chipped up every time I plugged something in, not to mention it's not to code and if you go to sell your house someday, it might not pass inspection.
    As far as email, I'm not on Google plus which I think I need to have my email be on there. I'll check that out and see if I can update it or add a way to contact me via email. Thanks!

  3. This is AMAZING! I have only ever bought decorative outlet plates or done one over in wallpaper to match a wall. Would never have thought to paint to match tile - that is just so cool. And it turned out perfectly! You did such a great job!

  4. These turned out great! I just bought pretty bronze metal covers for my backsplash but I textured and painted the outlet and light switch covers to match the walls in my kitchen. Definitely something I will keep in mind for future projects.

  5. Thank you for the fabulous tutorial. Super idea!

  6. Great idea Selina. Looks super!

  7. Christina @ Floridays Mom11/20/12, 2:49 PM

    This is BRILLIANT. I have seen people "decorate" them, etc which only brings even more attention to them..why oh why!?!? This makes so much more sense. Disguise those bad boys. I may be doing this to my back splash asap. thanks for the great tip

  8. This is a great idea, they really blend in. What we did in our kitchen was to mount the outlets on the bottom of the upper cupboards so they are not on the wall at all. The little light valance that hides the under cupboard lights, also hides the outlets. The added bonus is watching friends try to figure out where you plug in your kettle when they help in your kitchen for the first time!!

    1. Oh man, that is a GREAT idea!! Why didn't I think of that?? ;-)

    2. My parents did that also in their home, but it doesn't look great when the appliances are have cords going up! I would rather do this and be able to hide the cords behind appliances when plugged in.

    3. I suppose this is why I love blogs so much, I love hearing everyone's opinions, tips and advice :-) Then we all can read it and figure out what we really want.

  9. That is really impressive. Well dnoe.


Thank you for your comments! I read them ALL and appreciate them. If you are asking a question be sure and leave your email, it will help me be able to contact you if you need a response. :-)

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