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How to Paint Furniture with Unicorn Spit

Jeannie has been writing online for over 10 years. She covers a wide variety of topics - hobbies, opinions, dating advice, and more!

Before and after Unicorn Spit End Tables

Before and after Unicorn Spit End Tables

Refinishing Furniture

If you are looking for a way to make an old piece of furniture more exciting, Unicorn Spit is a great option. Unicorn spit is a gel stain that comes in many vivid colors, such as Pixie Punk Pink and Phoenix Fire. You can create patterns, swirls, and splatters on practically any surface. If you don't like it, you can easily wipe it off with a little water and start again.

This tutorial will focus on end tables and a small wooden organizer (the Moppe) from IKEA. I've found wood is the perfect surface for experimenting with Unicorn Spit. It's also a good idea to start with an older piece of furniture while trying out colors and learning how to use Unicorn Spit the first time. When setting up a space to begin your painting project, try to find an area you won't mind getting a little messy. A garage is perfect if you have access to one.

End table painted with Unicorn Spit

End table painted with Unicorn Spit

Unicorn Spit

Unicorn Spit on End Tables

For my first attempt at using Unicorn Spit, I had two old end tables and thought I would take a chance on them. They had several scratches and stains. My first step was to sand down the tables. My goal was to remove the shiny protective top layer on the tables, and also tone down the scratches and stains on the end tables.

The paints chosen for this project were blue, gray, teal, and brown. I wanted a subtle look since this would be going in my living room. I used a foam brush for this project. Both the foam brushes and the Unicorn Spit were purchased on Amazon for a reasonable price. If you watch how-to videos on YouTube, many people will tell you to use your hands with Unicorn Spit. Although that is an OK strategy for touching up spots, I found it was easier to dab drops of Unicorn Spit on the foam brush and blend in everything using that.

Long brush strokes along the pattern of the wood worked well. At times, I found the colors were coming out too dark, so I would just add a lighter color and lightly brush it along the dark areas. Keep in mind, the paint will dry a less vibrant color, so I found it beneficial to always go lighter and brighter when possible. I did not use a yellow gel stain for the end tables, but looking back, I do wish I'd use some yellow to brighten the brown and gray streaks.

Finishing Touches

Once you've achieved the look you want with the Unicorn Spit, it dries reasonably fast. When it dries, you will find it looks a bit dull on the wood. It also rubs off if you touch it or it gets wet. For this reason, you will need to use a Polyurethane gloss finish to add a layer of protection after allowing the Unicorn Spit to dry for about 24 hours.

I've included a link below to the gloss I used for this project. I picked this because a water-based interior gloss finish was recommended by others on YouTube. It also dries very fast. Again, I used a foam brush for this process.

When using this product, I found it was best to use long, confident strokes. Don't be afraid to put more on the brush than you think you'll need. You will also want to work quickly because this product really does dry quickly. Initially, it comes out of the can looking white, but don't panic. When it dries, it will be clear. I also found that it was best to use 2 layers; just make sure to wait 2 hours for the first layer to dry.

After the entire process is complete, I would recommend waiting a few days before actually using the furniture. It will feel dry to the touch, but it's better to be patient before bringing the final product into your living room.

Polyurethane Gloss

Unicorn Spit Experiment with IKEA Organizer

After completing my first project with Unicorn Spit, buying brighter colors and using a new piece of furniture was the next goal. I purchased a Moppe from IKEA, which is a small wooden mini-organizer. IKEA has a number of items made of wood that is perfect for a beginner. No sanding was needed for this project!

Tie dye is really in style right now, so I tried to achieve a tie dye look. First, you need to disassemble the organizer by removing the drawers. It makes it much easier to paint. Next, pick some really fun colors. In this case, I picked yellow, pink, orange, and aqua. Then using the technique previously used, add blobs of gel to the foam brush. You can try swirls and streaks. It is actually really fun and it's OK to make a mess. Again, if you make a mistake, spraying it with a little water and wiping it off helps a lot. Don't be afraid to try strange color combinations!

Once you've completed the Unicorn Spit painting, your last step is use the Polyurethane gloss finish again. I kept the drawers unattached to the organizer for the drying process and waited 24 hours. Again, it looks a little dull until adding the gloss. I used to same Polyurethane gloss finish as last time, but through trial and error, I've found an acrylic clear spray paint also works well on smaller projects like this. It depends on whether you feel more comfortable spray painting versus brush painting during the last step.

Completed Unicorn Spit IKEA mini storage chest / organizer

Completed Unicorn Spit IKEA mini storage chest / organizer

Unicorn Spit Ideas

If you would like to take a boring dresser to the next level or repaint your kitchen cabinets to look like a tie dye rainbow fantasy, Unicorn Spit is the product for you. It's ridiculously easy to use and available at most craft stores and Amazon. If you think you are not an artist, think again. I would recommend buying something small (there are $1 wooden picture frames at Dollar Tree) or using some old furniture if you are not that attached to it. Just give it a try. Even mistakes can look beautiful with Unicorn Spit. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised with your finished work of art.

© 2021 Jeannie Marie


Jeannie Marie (author) from Baltimore, MD on July 02, 2021:

Thank you! When I first told people about the product, they thought I was joking, too.

Jeannie Marie (author) from Baltimore, MD on July 02, 2021:

Thank you! I was trying different techniques on each drawer and I was going for a beach look on that one.

I think it’s called Unicorn Spit because it’s sparkly and pretty like a unicorn, but also a memorable name.

FlourishAnyway from USA on July 02, 2021:

When I saw the notification about "unicorn spit," I thought you were being humorous. I've never seen this product but like what you've done with it. You're very artsy!

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on July 01, 2021:

Too cool! I really like the water/sunset look of the bottom drawer on the IKEA piece.

Tell me, why is it called Unicorn Spit?

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