Have you heard the news that Lowes is now carrying new Valspar Chalky Finish Paint? This is great news for those who like premixed chalk style paint, but don’t live near any retailers of Annie Sloan or other chalk style paints.
I heard it was coming out, and was looking forward to testing it. I’ve tried a lot of chalk-style paints, as well as made my own, so I wanted to see how it compares.
Since I had just finished arranging an enamelware grouping on my kitchen shelf, I decided I’d make a sign to hang above it, which would give me a chance to test the paint on a small piece, before using it on something larger.
I selected the color Trousseau Blue and painted it onto a piece of really rustic old wood.
This is what the paint looked like once dry. I love the pretty matte finish.
I usually use sandpaper to distress, but when possible, I prefer to use the wet distressing method. I think you can achieve a much more authentically aged look, so I really wanted to test and see how well the Valspar paint would work using this method.
I was 100% satisfied! The paint looks like it gradually aged over time – not like it was artificially distressed.
And here’s how the completed sign turned out. I really love the color, and would love to use it on a piece of furniture now.
I painted two canning jars as well, to see how the paint would perform on glass. It did require 2 coats to fully cover brush strokes, but it turned out wonderful. I’ll be filling these with flowers all summer long, I’m sure.
Cost Comparison – the price of the paint is comparable to other premixed chalk style paints. Annie Sloan Chalk Paint retails for around $35 a quart; Valspar is about $30 for 29 ounces, so it is a bit less expensive, and you don’t need to pay shipping fees like you would if you don’t live near any chalk style paint retailers.
Comparing the price to mixing your own chalky paints is difficult, because when mixing your own, the cost depends on the type of paint you purchase, and what you add to the paint to produce the chalk-like look..
Sizes – At this time, Valspar Chalky Finish Paint is only available in the 29 oz. size. I do think they should make sample sizes available, as most chalky paint customers are accustomed to being able to purchase sample sizes, and often don’t want a larger can.
I was very satisfied with everything about this paint, and I would recommend it! It comes in many colors and is tintable!
The paint is fairly thick and creamy, and I did experiment with watering it down just a bit. I used the watered down paint on a basket and it covered it very well. For durability, I wouldn’t recommend doing it on things like furniture, just crafty types of projects where durability isn’t such a concern.
Waxes – Valspar has also come out with their own clear sealing and antiquing wax. I’ve never been a fan of Minwax furniture wax, and I’ve always wished I had a local source for better wax, so I was eager to try it.
Cost – The wax costs about $17 per pint (16 oz.), compared to about $25 for 500 ml (about a pint) for Annie Sloan wax, about $19 for Fiddes and Sons wax, and $10-15 for Minwax Finishing Wax (also about a pint), so the price is on the low end for waxes. As I said, I don’t like the Minwax brand of wax, but I’m adding it for comparison sake.
Application – The consistency of the waxes are like room temperature margarine – extremely soft. It applies easily with a brush. After applying the wax, wipe off any excess before the wax begins to dry.
I tested both of the waxes on a piece cut off from the edge of my sign wood, so I could see the results before applying them on my sign.
Here is the Valspar Sealing and Antiquing Wax side by side.
I was satisfied with the Sealing Wax. I didn’t love it any more or less than other waxes I’ve tried, but it was fine, so I would purchase it again in the future. The instructions didn’t say anything about buffing the waxed surface, as most waxes instruct you to do, but I did and there was a nice, smooth, and satiny finish afterward.
The Antiquing Wax, I was less impressed with. First of all, you need to apply a base of the sealing wax first, let it dry, then apply the antiquing wax. That’s 2 coats of wax needed to obtain an antiqued finish (double $$).
I read the directions on the can, pamphlet and website, and the only thing thing any of them said was to work in small sections, brushing the antiquing wax on, then to wipe off the excess. When I did that, the beautiful paint color became dirty looking. I thought maybe I hadn’t rubbed enough off, so I rubbed harder. While that did remove a little more of the wax, the paint still looked dirty. Next, I dipped a rag into the sealing wax, and tried wiping away some of the antiquing wax. That did improve the appearance of the paint color, but this is a step I added – not that their directions included. The photo above was taken after I did that final step.
For comparison, I used my normal method of antiquing with wax + Vintage Storehouse Antiquing Powder (more about it HERE). I used the VS powder over the area that previously had just the Valspar Sealing Wax. Here are the two finishes side by side.
Vintage Storehouse has many colors of antiquing powder, but the one I had on hand is called Chestnut, which is a fairly dark color – darker than I would normally use with this blue paint, but it gives you an idea of what the powder looks like when applied.
I used the same method of putting wax on a rag to wipe away the excess powder, as I did on the antiquing wax above. I felt that the VS antiquing powder did a much better job of accenting the nooks and crannies in the old wood than the Valspar antiquing wax did – without taking away from the beautiful paint color, but as I said, I would select a lighter shade of powder for this paint color in the future.
After all my comparison tests, I decided to use only the Valspar clear Sealing Wax on my sign. I loved the paint color and really just wanted to protect it rather than risk ruining it by adding anything more to it.
It is the perfect finishing touch above my enamelware collection!
My Thoughts in a Nutshell
1. I would highly recommend Valspar Chalky Finish Paint.
2. I would use Valspar Sealing Wax and recommend it more than paste waxes (like Minwax), but not necessarily above other soft waxes. I found it comparable to other soft waxes.
3. At this time, I would not recommend Valspar Antiquing Wax. Perhaps I was using it incorrectly, although I followed the minimal instructions available from the company.
I do hope that Valspar will add some videos, and clearer directions to their website, so customers know exactly how to use their products.
See more of my signs on salvaged wood HERE.
Disclosure – This post contains Amazon affiliate links, for which I receive a small compensation.