HOW I APPLY B-I-N SHELLAC PRIMER TO STOP BLEED THROUGH, STAINS, KNOTS, AND ODOR ON MY PAINTED FURNITURE MAKEOVERS. [VIDEO]
Hi sweet #sifamily and thanks for joining me today. I don’t know if this has ever happened to you, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve primed, then painted – only to still see some bleed-through rearing its ugly head. Or worse yet. I primed and painted. Everything looked perfect. Then I top coated and low and behold – nasty stains were bleeding through! After putting in all the work, it’s SO frustrating to have to back peddle to cover what should have been blocked in the first place.
For those of you who know me, you know I’m thrifty. But when I know a product over-delivers and saves me a ton of time and worry, I don’t mind paying a little extra. In my humble opinion, B-I-N Shellac Based Primer is one of those products. It’s a time saving stain-blocking primer that gives a visual along with the confidence to paint without worry.
Why I love it….
- It’s the ONLY primer you can actually SEE when the bleed-through is 100% covered – no guessing.
- Dries extremely fast 10-15min and recoat within 30 minutes
- Sands super smooth
- Blocks odors like must and smoke
- Super thin consistency but a little goes a long way
- Blocks water stains, knots, bleed-through and other stains
- Denatured alcohol-based so it does smell
- Requires solvent clean up
- Pricey (but a little goes a long way)
$15 Nightstands – SALVAGED
B-I-N Shellac Primer
Foam Roller + Cheap Paint Brush
Dixie Cups + Paper Plates
Mask and Gloves
How to Apply BIN Shellac Primer by Zinnser
HERE’S A STEP BY STEP VIDEO:
If you have any issues viewing – you can check it out here on my Youtube Channel
STEP #1:: SHAKE AND STIR
The shellac settles on the bottom of the can so once my furniture is ready for primer (ie cleaned and sanded) I give the can a good shake. Open it up. Then give it a really good stir.
STEP #2:: Pour Onto Paper Plate
Clean up for shellac-based primers require denatured alcohol/solvents. To avoid this, I use disposable supplies so I don’t have to worry about clean up. I take a Dixie Cup (or similar size) and pour in 2 or 3 little cups onto a paper plate.
STEP #3:: Roll Primer onto Furniture
One of the benefits of this primer is it’s super thin and dries super fast. One of the downfalls of this primer is it’s super thin and dries super fast. Once it starts drying or is applied too thick, it turns into a sticky mess. I use the foam roller to apply the majority of the surface and a cheap paintbrush if the tip of the roller doesn’t reach into certain tight corners.
STEP #4:: Apply a Second Coat
This primer dries to the touch within 10-15minutes. By the time I finish applying the first coat, I can apply a second coat with no wait time in-between. Ideally, the instructions say 30min to recoat but this primer dries so fast often I’ll put on coat #2 after I finish coat #1.
STEP #5:: Sand
If there is no sign of stains or bleedthrough showing through, I’ll give the primer a light sanding and it’s ready for paint. I rarely need more than 2 coats to block heavy duty bleed through.
One of the reasons I blog is to share my experiences. It’s fun to share products and techniques that have worked for me, and what has not. This is in hopes it helps you in some small way on your furniture painting journey. Another big reason I love blogging is it provides me the opportunity to learn from YOU. We’ve all had different experiences and it’s great to hear your thoughts and opinions. That said, I’ve had numerous emails saying they’ve tried B-I-N Shellac Primer and found it challenging to use. I hope all the tips in the video are helpful and encourage you to give it a try. If you have any questions I’ll be happy to answer them below. 🙂
On a personal note, this COVID 19 has everyone concerned and I hope you’re staying safe. I went shopping the other evening and it was a surreal and unsettling experience to see the shelves cleared out of necessities like flour and toilet paper. Not to mention the reactions of some of the people shopping.
As a blogger/furniture painter, I’m blessed to have my workspace at home. I’m used to staying in a good portion of the day — but I realize not everyone feels that way. If you’re self-isolating or spending more time at home, I hope you take it as an opportunity to do some of the nice things you’ve been wanting to do. Maybe some furniture painting or any other hobbies you might enjoy.
I’m staying in as much as possible and when I do need to head out, I’m practicing hand sanitization and social distancing as I hope you are. It’s a scary time but I know we are strong and will get through this together. Stay healthy and safe my friends. XOXO
I’ll be back next Tuesday to share how these nightstands turn out.
HAVE YOU EVER USED B-I-N SHELLAC PRIMER TO SEAL AND PRIME YOUR FURNITURE? DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS OR TRICKS USING THIS PRIMER? FREE TO ASK ANY QUESTIONS YOU MAY HAVE… I ALWAYS LOVE HEARING FROM YOU. IT MAKES MY DAY! 🙂
Happy furniture painting my friends!
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Vicky Garber says
I am priming cabinets but have taken the surface down to the wood , the BIN primer is soaking into the wood, do i need a second coat? if so, do i need to sand between coat 1 of BIN and coat 2 of BIN?
Hi Vicky! Yes to the second coat. It may even require a 3rd coat if you are still seeing splotches or stain coming through. As for the sanding, you can sand between each coat of primer but it’s not necessary. Most of the time I don’t bother BUT I ALWAYS sand my very last coat before applying paint.
Help! I just used this shellac on some old doors. Assuming I did it too thick as it is already crackling. Any way I can fix this before applying the top coat?
Hello, thanks so much for this blog/video! It has been extremely helpful while updating my home. Do you know if I can add coffee water to BIN primer shellac? I plan on sponge painting it onto a diy stove hood vent cover for a plaster look. Thanks for your help!
Hi Angela! Thanks and I’m so happy you’ve found it helpful. BIN is amazing! As for your question, NO water or any type of water-based substances should be added to BIN Shellac-Based Primer.
Hello. Just a note about using the BIN shellac primer. After sanding my complete tallboy dresser and using regular primer 3 coats and having bleed through, I found your advice. Thank you!
I do have a comment about the foam roller. If you have a lot to paint you should have extra rollers on hand as I found they get sloppy and and fall apart after a bit of using. The coverage is amazing. I only wish I had known this before I started. Maybe foam rollers from the paint store last longer but the dollar store ones didn’t last long for me.I won’t soon forget and will be giving out this advice if I get the chance. Thank you again.
Hi Alana! SOOOO glad this has been helpful! And yes, when I first started using the BIN I had a few of the foam rollers start breaking down as well. I learned my lesson fast after the foam bits started sticking in the primer! The key is to work quickly or just as you suggested, keep extra rollers on hand. TFS 🙂 Mine come in packs of 3 from the dollar store.
Hello!! I am currently refinishing the banister in my new house. I’ve already applied one coat of the Primer. Am I able to use a water based paint over top of the primer?? Also do you have a recommendation for a top coat?
Yes, you can use water-based paint over this primer. I do it all the time. 🙂 For a topcoat, if you’re looking for something to withstand high traffic use on a railing, I have a few faves. Minwax Poly, Varathane, and General Finishes all work fantastic. If you want to go extra heavy duty you can opt for a flooring sealer or outdoor poly. Hope this helps.
I am white washing my paneling from the 1960s. So far the process is turning out great; however, I have come to a panel where bleed through is happening. I found your website talking about BIN shellac based primer. Would you say Zinsser BIN “clear” shellac based primer would be good to cover over the existing coats of white wash to stop the bleed through? My thoughts are to cover with the clear BIN and then continue with the white wash process until I obtain the ideal look we’re wanting to achieve.
Yes, the Zinsser Clear Shellac will work to stop bleedthrough. I would be cautious of how thick you apply it though. I applied it too thick (and too many coats) on one of my projects and then when I added the water-based paint, it crackled.
So I just used this shellac on some old doors. Assuming I did it too thick as it is already crackling. Any way I can fix this before applying the top water based coat?
I want to use BIN as a primer for my interior window trim and sills. Would the moisture from window condensation be too much for it? Im using an acrylic enamel top coat.
Hi Emma! Yes, you sure can and it’s a great primer for moisture sealant.
Hi! Do you have your bin tinted when you are painting a dark color over it? And if so, how do you find a store that will tint it? Thanks!
I haven’t but I believe any store that sells B-I-N Shellac Based Primer will tint it for you.
Betty A says
Hoping you can help me.
I’m attempting my first refurbished project but, a dining table. Want to Whitewash but need to use bin primer to help with stains but specifically a strong odor. I’m concerned the primer will affect the color of the whitewash. I’m using chalk white paint for this. Hope you can advise me.
Hi! Quick question. Which nap roller do you prefer for the shellac application? I was going to use 4in with 3/8 nap. Appreciate your insight!
I don’t use a nap roller for BIN. I use a foam roller. 🙂
Brittany M says
Hello! I just primed with killz water based and sure enough had yellow bleeding. Do I need to sand the killz off before using this? Or can this be my second coat of primer?
I would give it a super light scuff sanding just to knock everything down. Then remove the dust and use the BIN. You won’t get any bleedthrough. 🙂
Miss Denise, I just primed my oak bathroom vanity with BIN shellac primer and the coverage is beautiful but I noticed tons of tiny bubbles on the wood. I gave it two coats of primer, and thought it would self level, but after it dried the bubbles remained! I sanded and that got rid of them. I’m not new to painting but I am to using the BIN – the first coat I used a foam roller, and the second coat I used a microfiber roller, and bubbles after each coat. I didn’t use too much/ slop it on, so I’m wondering what I did wrong. Any suggestions from a seasoned BIN user? Thank you
Sounds like primer didn’t bond. Some substrates require deglossing or heavy sanding to remove shine. Sherwin Williams makes an extreme bond primer that works on most surfaces. But,
You’ll most likely need to strip off blistering primer and re prep surface. Any product you apply on top of that will not stop the blistering .
Do you dispose of dried-out cheap brushes and rollers with shellac primer in the trash can or hazardous waste site?
I’m not sure they accept them at our hazardous waste site so once they are dry and hard, they go into the trash.
I used slick stick then applied one coat of fusion mineral paint but I’m seeing some bleed through in spots. Can I touch those spots up with this primer (over the fusion) ?
You sure can Kara. 🙂 You may want to prime the full area tho (for instance the entire top rather than the few spots) so the paint finish looks perfectly uniform.
Hi can I put acrylic/enamel paint over this as a topcoat?
You sure can!
Hi, I’ve used this to prime IKEA wardrobes, but then stupidly used valspar emulsion over it; which is flaking off fairly easily. Do I have to sand this fully back before repainting with wood paint or would a light sand be okay? And can I use a water based wood paint or would it not be very hard wearing? Thank you!
Use “cabinet” paint over wardrobes. Resand and coat with Cabinet/Furniture paint. BiN will take any paint as it’s final coat.
Kris H. says
Hi! I’m going to start priming a dresser I’m working on tomorrow. The primer I have is BIN 123 Bullseye if you’re familiar. Any idea what the difference is and how the coverage is for bleedthrough compared to the shellac? Also, if I’m staining the top, should I prime that area too? Thank you!
Great blog and so glad I discovered it! I’m getting ready to paint white a very dark brown stained, rough t1-11 vaulted ceiling. BIN was recommended prior to using an acrylic based latex. Can we use a paint sprayer to apply and immediately backroll to apply this product?
I’ve sprayed BIN Shellac Based Primer and it works beautifully – so YES! The only thing I don’t like about sraying this primer is the clean-up.
karen colvin wilhelm says
Hello, I am using Bin Zinzer on lacquared chairs. I just did one coat so far . There is unevenness in coverage, as I would expect with just one coat. In the areas where it is applied more lightly ( can see wood color underneath, the coat comes right off with my fingernail. This does not seem to be the case where it is applied more heavily.. Do you think a better coating will stay on or do I need to get the lacquer finish off? I used Simple Green to clean before I primed..
Hi Karen! With lacquer (slick-shiny) finishes, I always give the piece a scuff sanding. As good as any product is, it’s an extra assurance that the product has some “tooth” for it to stick to. So yes. I would suggest you give the chairs a light scuff sanding and then re-apply your second coat. 🙂
Kandice Polut says
Hello! I primed with bin shellac and there appeared to be no tannin bleed through after the first coat of paint. It then I applied the second coat of paint and it’s now dry. I have a few cabinet doors that I can now see tannin bleed through. Should I just sand lightly, apply another coat of the shellac, then top coat with paint again? I’m so frustrated and looking everywhere for an answer. Idk what to do. Please help!
Hi Kandice! Yes, that’s exactly what I would do. Lightly sand. Apply another coat of BIN Shellac Primer. Paint again. 🙂
Andrew John Martinez says
Can I use chalk paint over this primer? I’m currently refinishing a piece of furniture thst is wood vin.
Since it’s a shellac based primer is it ok to paint over it with chalk paint?
It sure is. I use Chalk/Mineral Paints on most of my makeovers after using BIN. 🙂
Laura Cooper says
HI, I have just chalk painted a piece of furniture (cleaned & lightly sanded first) in white, i am noticing the paint is yellowing!…bleed through?…..can i give it a coat of B I N shellac Primer (which i would need to purchase) or clear lacquer and then do another coat of chalk paint to get rid of this?…..new to painting furniture.
Hi Laura. A coat or two of shellac will help block the bleedthrough. OR, yes, you can sand and then prime with BIN Shellac based primer.
Carly Corwin says
What should I do if the primer gets to thick and looks gummed up in some spots from going over the area to much. It’s my first time using BIN and I’m am painting my kitchen cabinets. I feel like I just created alot of extra work for myself (thankfully I’ve only painted one cabinet. Thank you
HI Carly! This is VERY common the first time using B-I-N Shellac Based Primer. When my sister used it for the first time she HATED it because of this very reason! The key is to work quickly. Don’t use too much product. And once it’s laid on your cabinet and looks good, leave it be. It’s SO tempting to go over it like you would a paint, but it will get sticky and cause a mess. To fix your cabinet, I would sand it down so the primer feels smooth to the touch under your hand. Also, are you using a roller or brush? I find a roller makes cabinet painting much easier. I hope this helps. 🙂
Hey! I painted my kitchen cabinets this summer. I cleaned with TSP, sanded, and put on BIN. I sanded again, and then 2 coats of alkyd enamel paint. However, some cabinets have grease coming through!! Agh! Do I need to start completely over? Can I just do primer + paint again? Do I need to sand it? Please help!
Hi Michelle! Sorry to hear this. Did you rinse the TSP off really well after cleaning with it? The reason I ask is it sounds like all your steps are spot on. The only issue I can think of is that the TSP residue affected the BIN Primer. If this is the case, I would sand, clean, sand again, prime and repaint.
Hello! Thanks for the great tips, I used a brush the first time before seeing your video, BIG MISTAKE. How long do I have to wait in order to sand it down again to apply with a roller?
Hi Jessica! If you used BIN Shellac Primer, not long at all! You can sand it down within an hour. 🙂
Rachel B says
How long after applying the BIN primer should I wait before painting?
Hi Rachel! BIN dries in about 30 minutes so usually an hour and your good to paint. 🙂
Hi, how long do you wait after you prime to apply your top coat of paint?
Hi Shannon. It depends on temp/humidity etc but BIN Shellac Primer dries SUPER fast. I can start painting within an hour.
Nancy Lemieux says
Hi Denise! I’ve never painted furniture before but I would love to paint my office furniture which is mahogany! It is a big 3 piece set! I’m very nervous! Should I give it a go? I’ve been watching and reading a lot a posts about it and it seems doable but I don’t want to mess it up! My idea is to paint it white and distress it. So Surely I would use the BIn first but I was wondering if you had the sand the piece first since my furniture has a thick and shiny coat of varnish.
Thank you for your excellent advice and videos. It’s awesome! Have a great day!
Hi Nancy! One of the first projects I took on (and this was long before I started in the furniture painting business) was my childhood French Provincial Bedroom Set. I was nervous. It felt daunting. And I’m not going to lie, it took me a loooong time to finish. But I LOVED the end result. If you’re furniture has a shiny coat, I would suggest sanding to give the primer something to stick to. 2 Coats of the BIN Shellac Primer should do it but don’t be afraid to add a third if you still see some bleedthrough. I’d love to hear how it all turns out for you. Have fun. 🙂
Hi Denise, I need ALOT of help. I’m working on a vanity for my little girl. It’s my first project and I feel like I’ve screwed it up royally! I initially painted with chalk paint and had alot of bleed through, so I resanded the piece and then primed it with KILZ premium 3 primer. I still had alot of bleed through and decided not to put on a second coat.. I ve lost so much motivation at this point and dont want to waste anymore time than I already have. So, I bought some BIN primer for my last attempt, However, the vanity has alot of raised blotchiness from bleed through and the KILZ 3 is not sanding easily at all. So here are my questions: Do I need to sand it smooth again before applying the BIN primer? And Do I need to sand between coats of BIN?
Hi Jennifer! No worries, nothing is screwed up. 🙂 But a little extra work will be needed to fix the bleedthrough. I would take a palm sander or orbital sander with some 120 grit and sand over the KILZ Premium. You don’t have to sand down to the original finish. Just enough to scuff up the surface of your primer. Then apply 1 or 2 coats of the BIN with a roller preferably. I’m in the habit of sanding between coats but it’s not required. But if you’re looking for a super smooth professional finish, you can give your last coat of BIN Shellac Primer a light once over with a 220 grit. Use a tack cloth or damp cloth to wipe down the dust and then paint. If you follow these steps your little girl’s dresser will be amazing. 🙂 And as a side note, I get your frustration because I myself don’t like redoing work I’ve already done. But we’ve ALL been there. It’s part of the learning process. I hope you’re patient with yourself.
Jackie C Cooley says
I bought this primer after seeing your recommendation on another video/blog. I had completely primed my piece (using the regular Zinsser ) when I noticed yellow stains coming through. I was sick! Oil based primer was definitely needed., but I had a horrible time with it.. When I went to clean my brush I tried regular mineral spirits to no avail (thank goodness I had some denatured alcohol on hand to mix with the mineral spirits ) or it would have never cleaned up. You can bet I will be going to the Dollar store to buy disposable, cups (didn’t know paint brushes and rollers were even available at the Dollar store!! and buying some supplies so they can be tossed! I have learned so much from you – THANKS!!
Hi Jackie! I get it. VERY frustrating after putting in all the work. I’m glad you’ve found these tips helpful and I find using disposable supplies makes this priming much easier. You can find the foam rollers and cheap paintbrushes on Amazon too.😊
Joan anton says
Thank s for the tips . I will get out my copper and green paint project today . It will blend with Saint Patrick’s Day since i can not celebrate with friends . Blessings to all .
Hi Joan! Your copper and green paint project sounds perfect for today.🍀 Have fun!
Hi Denise, I was wondering if you have ever tried the Water-Based version of the BIN and the comparison between the two.
Hi Regina! Yes! BIN has an Advanced Synthetic Shellac Version but I haven’t tried it yet. I’m SO happy and confident with this BIN that I’m not thinking anything synthetic would work as well… but I could be wrong. If you or anyone reading this comment gives it a try, I’d LOVE to hear back. 🙂
Well great, I just finished the first coat of B-I-N synthetic shellac primer on my dinning room table top.. Now you have me nervous. Got my fingers crossed, Will let you know how it comes out.
I usually use the clear shellac because I don’t like the look the white leaves when I distress. Do you find that with the white? Do you ever use the clear?
Hi Susan! BIN does have their CLEAR shellac-based primer too but I’ve never tried it. I was under the impression it was more for stubborn odors rather than stains and also it being clear, I don’t have a ‘visual’ once the stains are 100% covered. If you’re looking to distress, the white BIN can is tintable. 🙂
I read through every last one of the comments, I was truly sad when I got to the last one! I got a red maple dresser that has worn laminate on it. I sanded the thing and cleaned with TSP, and like a dummy instead of putting this BIN on there first like I was going to, I painted the top of it with Rust-Oleum painters touch in the can, now it looks like little hairline cracks all over from the damaged laminate underneath. Also bleed through from the old stain. I know I need to use this primer now, but do you know what I can do to solve the textured paint that’s on there now? I’ve tried to sand it and I think it’s just too moist to work. I can scrape it with my nail if I scrape hard enough.
Can I PLEASE dm you a picture of the car he on Instagram? I am betting that you would probably know exactly what I need to do 🥺
Cecilia from Georgia says
Your video is very good! I have to tell you something funny. I use closed caption so I don’t miss anything and I can cut the volume down. When you were talking about covering stained woods that have bleed though or an odor, the cc wrote that has stains or husband has odor!! It is at the 5:34 minute mark. I cracked up! Got a good laugh that was so needed this morning!! I just bought a gallon of Kilz oil-based stain block so after I use it up I’ll get the BIN. The Kilz is so thick, I think the BIN would be easier to use. Happy painting!
🤣That is hilarious!!! THANKS, this just gave me a good laugh!
Have been using this for years. It not only eliminates bleed through but acts as a binding primer. Great tips!
Thanks Lucinda! 🙂
Hi Denise. My husband and I used B.I.N. on our bathroom walls when we renovated. We were told it’s the best stain blocking and mould resistant primer. It’s a great product but oh boy, we had a hard time using it!!!! I wish we had your advice before we painted because it would have made things so much easier. Your tips on using disposable paint tools is excellent. I had to throw away my expensive brushes! And you sure aren’t kidding when you say it is SMELLY and dries FAST. Thank you for the wonderful tips. Very helpful for next time:)
You’re not the first to say this primer is a little messy and smelly but it’s beyond amazing once you get the hang of it! Sorry about your good brushes but hopefully your bathroom reno looks gorgeous! XOXO
Thank you for this video + details, I needed this. Great set-up tips..Happy St. Patrick’s Day, and stay safe!
I was thinking of you when I made the video! 🙂 Happy St.Patrick’s Day Tracy! With all that’s happening out there, I actually forgot it was St Patty’s day.😐
Jo Burrow says
Thanks so very, very much for sharing your knowledge and great painting/finishing tips with us. I laughed when I watched you paint spindles, because that’s the only way I’ve ever painted them, it’s so much easier. Now everybody knows. Ha.
I really enjoyed all of your work it is beautiful. So just keep it up, and stay well thanks again. Jo Burrow, Kernersville, North Carolina, USA.
Thanks so much, Jo! And you take care and stay well as well! XOXO
Love your work! I would like to paint an old cedar chest with the Coffee Bean mineral paint. (Love that vanity you painted in that paint). Do you suggest using a primer?
Hi Beth! Cedar tannins do tend to bleed through so to be 100% sure the Coffee Bean doesn’t look blotchy, its a good idea… especially if the wood needs any sanding. If you’re uncomfortable using a shellac based primer, DB does have waterbased BOSS which comes in clear (great if you want a little distressing) and white.
Thanks a ton for sharing the info.
I haven’t painted anything in my life I am thinking of to paint my bed frame and side table which is a dark brownish black shade .
I have few questions.
1. Before priming it did you clean it with TPA or anything else to remove off the dust. If not how should we clean it.
2. I am Thinking of to paint it to white/ Light grey! So What brand of paint and type of paint would you suggest over this Primer, That gives a bit of Glossy finish but not Matte.
3. Would you suggest any top coat For that paint also.
As i have least knowledge about the painting stuff, Your blog has helped me in gaining a lot of knowledge.
Your help will be much appreciated if you can answer my questions.
thank you .
Hi Chandu! I only use TSP on really dirty furniture and depending on what type of primer you use, always make sure that TSP is compatible. I like using water and vinegar if it’s my own furniture because its much more natural. Any brand of paint can be applied over BIN Primer and you can achieve your desired glossy or matte finish with the topcoat you apply. Yes to topcoat because you want to protect all your hard work. 🙂 What a great project. Have fun. 🙂
Jane Barrett says
I use this primer all the time — but the best tip I can give you is to clean your brushes with TSP. It cleans as easy (maybe easier that latex paint clean up). No solvents required at alll!
ahhhh, thanks for this Jane! I never tried cleaning BIN with TSP… I’ll have to give it a go!