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How to Make Laminate Countertops Look Like Wood For Less Than $100.00

Marie-Helene Belanger6 Comments

Some of you may know that I was the voice behind the blog Kingsbury Brook Farm. One of my most popular posts was a project I tackled in the summer of 2016 when I made our laminate kitchen countertops look like wood. I thought I would share this DIY project with you today and show you how I was able to transform our laminate kitchen countertops for less than $100.00 and give you an update on how they look 3 years later.

This is a picture of our laminate countertops back in 2016.

How to Make Laminate Countertops Look Like Wood For Less Than $100.00

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I love the warmth of butcher block countertops but our budget did not allow us to make the upgrade. It took me a few weeks of research, trials and errors, and lots of scrap board pieces before I came across a product called Stainable Primer.  This is a primer that has wood particles in it and is stainable. You can transform any hard material into a stainable wood surface. At the time, I was not able to find anyone who attempted to stain their laminate countertops but I still went ahead and purchased a quart of Stainable Primer. Unfortunately, this product is now harder to purchase online. I found another product, which is very similar to the original Stainable Primer, and comes with the option to pick your wood color (Light Wood, Medium Wood, and Dark Wood).

I started the process by thoroughly sanding our kitchen countertops before applying two coats of Stainable Primer. Right after I applied the second coat, I used a wood graining tool and made a wood grain pattern.

How to Make Laminate Countertops Look Like Wood For Less Than $100.00

The next step was to apply two coats of stain and I chose Minwax Dark Walnut.

How to Make Laminate Countertops Look Like Wood For Less Than $100.00
How to Make Laminate Countertops Look Like Wood For Less Than $100.00

Like any wooden surface, the countertops needed to be sealed.  I went with Minwax Polyurethane in a satin finish and I applied a total of three coats.  I always prep food on a cutting board so I wasn't concerned about using polyurethane.

How to Make Laminate Countertops Look Like Wood For Less Than $100.00

The cost for this project was less than $100.00 and I am beyond happy with the outcome. Our countertops have help up beautifully since 2016 with only a few minor dings and scratches.

How to Make Laminate Countertops Look Like Wood For Less Than $100.00
How to Make Laminate Countertops Look Like Wood For Less Than $100.00
How to Make Laminate Countertops Look Like Wood For Less Than $100.00

As a homesteader, I am always striving to be content and work with what I have and this project was a reflection of that. I hope this inspires you to take a risk and embrace the journey you are on.

With love and gratitude,

Marie-Hélène