Can You Paint a Baby Crib? 5 Steps to Safely Paint Baby Crib

Can you paint a baby crib? Asks one of my readers and a homeowner who is interested in DIY decoration of different structures made of wood and even metals.

A baby crib is an indispensable piece of furniture you need before your child’s birth. More often than not, it tends to be the centerpiece in your baby’s room.

Since your baby will spend time in the coming two years, it needs to be comfy and safe. A little finishing touch to it would be appealing even to your little one.

Finishes such as stains, epoxy, and polyurethane will do the trick. However, Can You Paint a Baby Crib? 

Yes, you can paint a baby crib and it demands barely any exceptions. You can safely paint your baby’s crib without prior experience. However, not all household paints are baby safe.

Therefore, it is imperative to factor in the paint’s quality to establish a healthy surrounding for your baby. 

I am certain you have come across various painted baby cribs. They look fascinating, right?

You can also employ your DIY skills and attain the same objective. But, use the recommended paint considering that the baby’s safety is a priority. 

What Kind of Paint Can You Use On a Crib? 

It is now dawning on people that a crib is a requisite item to include in your home. But, you might be unsure of the best paint for your baby’s crib.

You don’t merely use any paint. It has to be odorless, has fewer VOCs, and non-toxic. Paints with low VOCs incorporate fewer chemicals, and they are considered baby safe. 

Still, the paint you opt for should be water-soluble and have antimicrobial additives. Such paints get rid of mold and are safe for your baby.

This list highlights the top-rated paints recommended for a. crib.

  • Renaissance furniture paint. 
  • Lullaby furniture paint. 
  • Milk paint. 

The paints mentioned above have a gentle formulation, making them safe for a baby’s crib. In addition, they dry quickly, thus scuttling the process. 

Tip: Avoid using paint additives and sealers that are not sanctioned for use on baby cribs. 

How Do You Paint a Wooden Crib? 

Painting your baby’s crib is one of the influential updates you can make. Interestingly, the process is effortless. So you won’t go through the hassle of calling an expert.

Even better, having good tools for the job beforehand makes this DIY project more delightful. To paint your crib handily, you will need the following materials: 

  • Round plate sponge.
  • Safe topcoat without VOC or odor.
  • Mask.
  • Tack cloth.
  • Ultrafine abrasive pads.
  • Deglosser or medium grit sandpaper.
  • Spray bottle.
  • Paint sprayer or a quality brush.

Now that you have all the essential requirements check out the guidelines below to paint your baby’s crib: 

Step 1: 

Before painting your crib, place it in an open space. Then for a thorough job, disassemble the crib and sort each part precisely.

That helps to reassemble it easily later. Marking all parts may also benefit a lot. Now use a tack cloth soaked in clean water to wipe out any dust present.

Note that even the smallest particle can disorder your painting task. For promising results, use a mixture of vinegar and water(1:1 ratio), And then give your crib ample time to dry. 

Step 2: 

Next, wear a face mask to deter dust inhalation. Follow with sanding the surface lightly using a fine-grit 220 sandpaper to balance all imperfections.

Remember, you don’t have to inevitably scuff the old paint to bare. Merely gentle sand down is enough. Doing this peels off the old paint and exposes the inner surface for better paint adherence.

So ensure you sand the crib evenly to allow the paint to form a uniform layer with the wood. 

Step 3: 

This step involves the removal of the sanding dust from the surface. Primarily focus on the inner corners and nooks for residing sanding dust.

Once you are done, let the crib dry for a while before proceeding to the next step. Not to forget, place a cloth on the floor to safeguard it from paint drips and spills.

But don’t bother too much if there are any accidental spills. There are numerous products designed to toss out despised paints. 

Step 4: 

Your crib is now ready for painting. Begin by stirring your paint to form a uniform solution. Considering that a crib has a small surface, you will need a medium paintbrush.

Such brushes deliver a professional look since they access restricted areas of your crib. You then slowly apply your first coat using slow and even strokes from top to bottom.

Give it ample time to dry, merely 2 to 4 hours. And then add the second coat for more neatness. Adding the second coat guarantees a deep and more solid color.

If you are an artwork devotee, make freehand designs on the crib. Use recommended stencils for a more appealing look. 

Step 5: 

Finally, you can now assemble your crib with utmost care. It would be best to let the crib dry fully and dissipate the fumes.

Some people even go to extreme lengths by keeping vessels of white vinegar in the room. And this helps to soak up all the paint fumes. 

Here’s a Video On Painting Baby Crib:

Can You Paint a Crib Without Sanding? 

Sanding your crib is arguably a daunting task. Fortunately, you can evade this step using various options provided in this guide.

Check out the products outlined below to paint your crib without sanding. 

  • Bonding primer: These products have great binding power, and they attach to glossy surfaces easily. However, you have to pay for their durability owing to their high price.
  • Milk paint: Using milk paint in conjunction with a bonding agent deters the need to sand your crib. However, the bonding agent is only crucial on the first coat.
  • Deglosser: This item is best applicable in an airy space. You just have to apply it to your crib, and it attaches to the paint easily. Nonetheless, it is good to examine the instructions before use.

Safety Tips to Consider When Painting a Crib

Any job that entails painting needs the utmost safety. That is because painting can result in unexpected spills or inhaling unhealthy fumes.

Follow these necessary precautions upon painting your crib: 

  • Ventilation: Before painting your crib, keep all windows open for proper airflow. The fumes elicited by paint are highly ignitable.
  • Wear protective cloth: Gloves, masks, and coveralls both aid in safeguarding you as you paint.
  • Avoid smoking: You should never smoke while painting. Smoking will infuse unwanted fumes in your body hence posing a serious health risk.

Pro Tips

  • It’s always constructive to paint on a sunny day since the paint dries shortly as opposed to humid conditions. 
  • Paint in a skyward and downward motion for a masterly finish. 
  • Use protective latex gloves to maintain your hands clean. 
  • Use a water-based primer to withhold imperfections. But that’s if you choose to use a primer. 
  • To slash the cleaning process halfway, cover nearby furniture. Or you can position your crib on top of newspapers or clothes. 

What Spray Paint Is Safe for Baby Cribs? 

As most woodworkers can attest, priorities often center around safety. Using safe spray paint for your crib is beneficial given that it dries quickly.

But, options like toxic spray paint will compromise your baby’s health. The right spray paints need to be made from harmless chemicals.

Such paints include rust oleum spray paint, which is both non-toxic and unleaded paint. Furthermore, most spray paints are safe after drying up.

You can even touch them with bare hands without transmitting chemicals via your skin pores once they dry. 

What Is the Best Finish for a Baby Crib? 

Are you in doubt if there is a safe finish for a baby crib? Don’t worry. You can navigate various options on the list I am about to mention.

As a woodworker, you will need the best finish that complements your crib’s theme. And mind you, the finish ought to be safe, so even if your baby chews the crib, it will have zero adverse effects. 

I suggest that you carefully choose the finish given that not all are safe for your baby. You might be disturbed by the many options on sale, but you must choose the best one.

Check out this list for some of the top-rated finishes for a baby crib. 

  • Shellac. 
  • Carnauba wax. 
  • Beeswax.
  • Walnut oil.
  • Mineral oil.
  • Raw linseed oil. 
  • Pure tung oil. 

The forenamed rarely fail to deliver as they can withstand maximum abuse such as chewing.

Most of the common things to examine before you choose your desired finish include; 

  • Zero VOC: choose a finish that has almost zero VOCs. Such products are safe for your child’s health, unlike the finishes that emit VOCs.
  • Non-toxic: non-toxic finishes are a better pick for baby cribs. The toxic alternatives pose a threat to your baby’s health.
  • Lastly, opt for finishes that don’t chip easily. 

Is Polyurethane Safe for a Baby Crib? 

Finishing your baby’s crib calls for something outstanding.

And opting for polyurethane is not an alternative I can suggest—the reason being lifelong chemical susceptibility results in incremental illness.

For instance, if you are exposed to this product, then you are more susceptible to asthma attacks, skin and eye irritation, respiratory constraints, and the rest. 

You can opt for other recommended finishes that integrate a lesser environmental footprint. Again, I don’t suggest using polyurethane while pregnant. By so doing, you will avoid headaches and nausea. 

Is Minwax Polycrylic Baby Safe? 

It is irresistible to beat the customary beauty of wood—especially wooden cribs which boast a decent look once painted.

However, if left unsealed, they become susceptible to damage influenced by moisture, heat, and high demands. To avoid such, most woodworkers add a protective top coat irrespective of whether it is stained or not. 

One of these sealers is Minwax polycrylic which is far less toxic than other alternatives. Minwax makes it a better pick for babies, as it dries quickly with minimal side effects.

But, the only downside is that it takes a long time to cure. Still, it can’t withstand extreme temperatures.

By contrast, Minwax polycrylic emits zero odor, so you won’t have to wear protection to use it. 

How Do You Seal a Painted Crib? 

Painted cribs are often susceptible to damage since paint hardly pervades the surface. That means you will have to seal your crib.

If you decide to seal your painted crib, ensure the product you choose is ultra-low VOC and ideal for use on a baby crib.

Sealing a painted crib helps to deter the paint from peeling off when your baby decides to chew the crib. It also protects your paint from scuffs, and chips, and you can easily clean them without ruining the painted underside. 

There are multiple ways of applying sealer to your crib. Read on for more clarity. It’s normally good to start by choosing the proper tool for the job.

Choose between a paint sprayer, a wax brush, a rag, a paintbrush, or an applicator sponge.

Note that the method you use determines the type of sealer to employ. Before commencing, keep your crib’s surface as dry as possible.

Also, examine the instructions carefully to certify the suggested application methods. Don’t forget to consider the temperature suggestions of your sealer.

That’s because working in extremely high or low temperatures can result in an uneven finish. Now begin by stirring your sealer thoroughly to form a uniform layer. Don’t wiggle topcoats to avoid forming air bubbles. 

Next, take your paintbrush and apply the crib sealer using thin and even coats. Aim to seal from one side of the crib to the other.

That helps to prevent your paintbrush from touching places that have already proceeded to dry.

Again, resist the craving of touching your finish before it fully dries. Once you finish, give the sealer time before adding extra coats.

Ideally, 3 to 4 coats are recommended for high-traffic cribs. With these simple steps, you are done with the job. 

Is It Risky for a Baby to Chew On Crib? 

Indeed a crib offers a comfy place for your child to rest. However, what if it turns out to be misery? Mostly, babies are bound to chew the crib primarily if it begins to peel off the exterior material. 

Babies who love chewing on your cribs are prone to illness, and here are the possible reasons;

  • Paint finish; Many cribs are painted to enhance their look and promote longevity. But, the paint can harm your baby since you are unsure of the chemicals used in making paints.
  • Wood stain; Some wood stains make your baby’s crib look far more appealing. But they are unsafe for your baby. With their high toxic capacity and odor smell, these products might cause respiratory damage to your young one.

How to Deter Wood Chewing

  • Add rail covers to the crib.

Rail covers help to prevent babies from chewing the crib. They have a soft lining that is safe for the baby to chew.

In addition, some are made of rubber and soft plastic.

  • Offer teething toys

Teething toys are made from safe materials. For those babies who are used to chewing the crib, such toys could be ideal.

However, not any teething toy matches your baby’s age.

Buy such toys from reputable brands and ensure it’s free from small parts that might become a choking risk. 

  • Ensure your crib has non-toxic elements

Even if no paints are fully free from toxic elements, go for the lesser toxic options. Most essentially, avoid these products: 

  • PVC and Vinyl
  • Fire retardants 
  • Polyurethane foam

These products are potential transmitters of cancer and behavior changes. 

What Causes Paint to Peel Off Your Crib? 

Many people find themselves in instances where paint prematurely peels off after painting the crib.

That’s surely a loss after spending too much effort and time painting. Normally, this is due to poor preparations that make the paint fail to adhere to the crib’s surface. 

One of the reasons paint fails to attach correctly is painting on a dirty surface. Among the first steps of preparing your crib for painting is by cleaning it.

Just use a clean rag soaked in water to wipe out any dust. After that, repeat cleaning the surface but this time, use a tack cloth to collect the rest of the dirt. 

Applying thick coats of paint also encourages paint to peel off prematurely. You can only get your desired results by applying thin and even coats of paint.

Always refer to the instructions if you are not sure of your undertaking. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can One Paint the Spindles? 

Yes, painting the spindles is relatively easy. The first step is to take a clean painting sponge and apply the paint in one go. Remember to use a dry sponge. 

Can I Sand a Primed Crib? 

Perhaps there is no need to sand the crib once you have primed it. Sanding only comes in handy when scuffing off the smooth finish to rough up the crib for better paint adherence. 

Are Oil-Based Stain-Blocking Primers Safe for Painting the Baby’s Crib? 

No, such primers emit high VOCs, which are not safe for your baby. These products look great on a baby’s crib, but silently, they can distort your baby’s health.

Look for other alternatives that are recommended as baby safe. 

Do I Need an Expert to Paint the Crib? 

The good thing with DIY projects is that you can do it even if you are not familiar with painting. Still, painting the crib yourself affirms your liking for the child.

So generally, painting a crib is by no means laborious, and you don’t require professionals. Simply follow the crucial steps and take pleasure in painting the crib. 

Can Babies Injure themselves In the Crib? 

Indeed this is a very rare occasion as babies lack the desired strength to injure themselves. Also, the crib rails are positioned closely to prevent the baby from getting stuck. 

What Are the Qualities of a Good Crib? 

A good crib has to adhere to safety standards before getting ready for use. Find out these qualities in the section below.

  • Recommended cribs must not exceed 2⅜ inches of space—that aids in protecting the baby’s head from getting stuck. 
  • All cribs must not include cutout designs to puts the baby’s arms, legs, head, and hands safe. 
  • The corner posts must not be present. This helps the baby to be free without the clothes attached to these posts. 
  • Check the construction materials more often to ascertain that they are firm and solid. Aggressive babies can unfasten screws, bolts, and other structures, making the crib break. 
  • Your baby’s crib should be free from lead-based paints. Babies can be exposed to lead poisoning if they chew cribs sealed with lead-based paints.  

Crib Precautions

  1. You need to keep loose bedding far from the crib. Things like pillows and blankets can choke or trap your child. 
  2. Also, don’t employ pads that connect to crib sides. 
  3. Cribs are only meant to cater to kids below 35″. Babies above the height mentioned above ought to sleep in beds. 
  4. Position the crib far from the blinds. Chances are window cords might get dressed around your baby’s neck. 
  5. Only use the recommended mattresses for the crib. Not to forget, wipe out any plastic rug from the mattress. 

Is Painting a Baby Crib Better than Buying a New One? 

It depends on your abilities. Some people have no financial constraints, and they are flexible to buy new cribs.

But considering how costly it is to buy new cribs, the painting stands out for many. Interestingly, you can customize your baby’s crib and establish a modern look. 

Can a Crib be Safe to Use for More than Five Years? 

Yes, the maximum duration of using a crib is roughly ten years.

Be sure not to surpass this duration as the crib will be loose and possibly break.

Also, ensure that the gaps between the mattress and the crib are not more than two fingers wide.

That helps to prevent the child from getting stuck between the gaps. 

Fortunately, Minwax Polycrylic is the fairest clear coat to use on a painted crib.

This item is relatively cheap and readily available for sale.

You can’t fail to obtain your desired results, especially if used with a quality roller with innovative ends. 

How Long Does It Take for Your Baby’s Crib to Dry and Be Safe to Use? 

It’s wise to allow the paint on your baby’s crib to dry completely before occupying the room. This can vary from days to weeks.

Just be patient and save the baby’s health.

There are many ways you can use to speed up the drying time; check out below. 

  • Practice good ventilation

Paint dries faster in spaces that are properly ventilated.

You may want to keep your windows and doors open to create space for absolute airflow.

Ideally, you can also install fans near your workplace to zip things up. 

  • Introduce Heat 

After painting, you can agree on setting a heater In the space for quick evaporation of VOCs. Heaters also speed up the drying process. 

  •  Purify the Air

It makes sense to run an air purifying device to enhance the crib to dry shortly. Moreover, you can also put indoor plants in the room to assist in consuming the VOCs faster. 

Is Chalk Paint Ideal for a Baby Crib? 

You can use ;[on a baby crib and other child’s items. However, you have to wait for 5 to 6 weeks before using the crib.

That gives the crib ample time to cure entirely. 

Final Thoughts

We have seen that painting your baby’s crib is far from a strenuous task. Whether you are handy with this DIY project or not, it will prove simple. But that’s only if you follow the outlined steps in this guide.

Painting guarantees protection and saves you from going out of the budget to buy a new baby crib. You also need to remember that the paint will peel off with time if you fail to clean the crib’s surface precisely. But…

Can You Paint a Baby Crib? 

Yes, you can paint a baby crib. However, you will want to use the right paint since the priority is the baby’s safety.

When deciding on your preferred paint, go beyond VOCs and settle on options with less harmful chemicals.

The paint should also have recommended additives and be odorless. Some paints even have antimicrobial agents to prevent mold growth. 

Now that you are well versed with all the details above, it would be best to try painting on your own.

Painting is also fun, so don’t worry about imperfections. Thanks for taking your time to navigate through this article.

This guide has plenty to offer, irrespective of your preferences. If you want more clarity or have any concerns, feel free to reach out in the comment section below.