Best Primer to Cover Dark Paint: Painting Made Easier!

Let me tell you a story of mine. A friend of mine recently bought a house. He loved everything about it except for the paint. 

Now, I get it, not many people like dark paints. Sometimes it can make your house gloomy too. 

So, when he came to me for advice, I did some homework and figured out a list of the best primer to cover dark paint. 

I thought why not share it with other people as many people suffer with it. In this article, I’ll be talking about the top-rated primers for this purpose. 

Without wasting another minute, let’s start-

Comparison of Our List of Best Primers to Cover Dark Paint

Best Primer to Cover Dark Paint
ProductType Weight
Rust-Oleum American Accents Spray PaintSpray paint14.4 ounces
Liquitex BASICS Acrylic GessoAcrylic Gesso15.8 ounces
KILZ PremiumLatex-based1 gallon
Kilz Masonry, Stucco and Brick Paint Latex-based1 gallon
Rust-Oleum 2004 Zinsser Bulls EyeOil-based1 quart(946 mL)
KILZ Original Multi-Surface Stain 3.9 Quart(3.7L)

1. Best Primer For Spraying: Rust-Oleum American Accents Paint

Best Primer to Cover Dark Paint

We’re starting off our list with the Rust-Oleum American Accents Spray Paint. American Accents 2X Metallic Spray is the best primer to cover dark paint interior. From walls to wood, you can use this product for almost any surface. 

It goes without saying it’ll give the surface long-lasting protection. Moreover, you can apply in those hard-to-reach spots. So, say goodbye to finger fatigue. 

Apart from all these, this primer can dry in only 20 minutes. But the downside is you can cover only 12 square feet with it. But other than that, it’s a great primer to hide dark paint. 


  • Dries in only 20 minutes
  • Reaches tough spots easily
  • Can be used for any surfaces
  • Provides a metallic finish


  • Covers only 12 square feet

Get yours here on Amazon

2. Liquitex BASICS Acrylic Gesso

Next up, we have the Liquitex BASICS Acrylic Gesso. You can go for this primer to use to cover dark paint. The Liquitex clear gesso can meet all your needs regarding primers. 

In fact, you can mix it with other acrylic paints too. That way you get a product that’s both a primer and a paint. 

However, the best part is the variety of looks you get from it. From matte to glossy, they’ve covered literally everything. Moreover, the amount is sufficient too. 

So, you can use it for any kind of repair. But for bigger projects, you should look at the other products on our list. 


  • One coat is more than enough to cover dark paint
  • Can be mixed with other acrylic paints
  • Great for other projects too


  • Gives out a rough surface after drying

Get yours here on Amazon

3. KILZ Premium

At number 3, we have the KILZ Premium. If you’re looking for the best stain blocking primer, KILZ original primer is your way to go. So, what makes this primer so good?

For starters, this product does 3 things. It’s a primer, it’s a sealer, and to top it off, it’s also stain blocker. 

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So, you’re getting the complete package with this product. But wait, there’s more. With every gallon of this primer, you can cover up to 300 to 400 square feet. 

But that’s not special, is it? Well, what if we say it gets ready for another coat in only 1 hour? Other than that, it has all the necessary features of a good primer such as low odor, zero VOCs and so on. 


  • Covers up to 300-400 sq. ft
  • Works as a primer, sealer, and a stain blocker
  • Good for both interior and exterior use
  • Zero VOCs and low odor


Get yours here on Amazon

4. Kilz Masonry, Stucco and Brick Paint

Now, let’s talk about the KILZ masonry primer, the best stucco paint for bricks. From first glance, you’ll know that it’s a premium product. And after applying it you know it means business.

For a manufacturer who’s been making these products for more than 40, KILZ sure knows how to ensure quality. They made a product that’s both a paint and primer. 

Undoubtedly, this is a good primer to cover dark paint. However, make sure to clean out the surface before you apply the product. 


  • 1 gallon covers up to 250-400 sq.ft
  • Works both as a primer and paint
  • Easy to clean
  • Protects from mold and mildew


  • Some users complain it’s hard to spread

Get yours here on Amazon

5. Rust-Oleum 2004 Zinsser Bulls Eye

Have you ever wished for a product that you can use on any kind of surface? Well, the Rust-Oleum Zinsser Primer lets you do that. 

Moreover, you can use it for both indoor and outdoor projects. It has a rust inhibitor that makes it perfect for all surfaces, especially metal. 

In fact, the water-based formula does more than you’d expect. It sticks to a surface without needing any kind of sanding. But most importantly, the cleanup couldn’t get any easier. 

All you need is some soap and water. Wash it with a rag and you’ll be good to go. The Zinsser 123 reviews surely proves that it’s the best primer to cover dark blue paint. 


  • Protection from rust and mildew
  • Can be used on any surface
  • Seals all kinds of stains
  • Excellent for high pH surfaces


  • Requires more than one coat

Get yours here on Amazon

6. Best Primer to Hide Dark Paint: KILZ Original Multi-Surface Stain

Lastly, we have the KILZ Original Multi-Surface Stain, best oil based primer on our list. 

It goes without saying that oil-based products do a lot better when it comes to paints and primers. You’ll get a much better durable end result than with water-based primers. 

However, the only downside is, oil-based primers tend to eat up a lot of time to dry. But rest assured as that’s not the case with this one. 

The KILZ Original Multi-Surface Stain takes only 30 minutes to dry despite being an oil-based primer. And you apply for another coat after 1 hour. So, we say confidently that it’s the best primer to cover dark color paint. 

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  • Low odor and VOC
  • Dries in only 30 minutes despite being oil-based
  • Covers 300-400 sq.ft
  • Blocks all kinds of water and smoke stains 


  • The smell is pretty bad

Get yours here on Amazon

Dark Paint and Primer- The Basics

A lot of people don’t even think of getting a dark and rich color in their home. Personally, I’ve never hesitated to experiment with different colors. Every 2-3 years I tend to change the paint. 

Sometimes that can be a light paint but I’ve had my fair share of dark paints. So, let’s explain why people get so when it’s about dark paints-

The problem with dark paints

Painting a wall with dark paint isn’t hard. It’s just like painting with a light color. If you do it properly, the paint will sit nicely too. 

However, that’s not where the problem is. People fear about covering up that dark paint. 

I mean it’s normal to think that darker paint will be much harder to cover. In fact, you might have to deal with problems if you don’t know how to cover it up. 

Let’s say, you want to put on a lighter color on the wall over your dark paint. Without taking the proper steps, the lighter paint might not even be that visible. 

It can give out a darker look than it should. So, that leaves out the real question, how do you paint over dark paint?

How does primer help to cover dark paint?

Before we get in the main part, let’s explain what a primer does. You’ve always seen that people use a primer before applying the paint. The reason behind this is, a primer covers the underlying paint that’s already on the wall. 

Obviously, dark paints also fall into that category. When you put up a dark paint on a wall, it gets into the insides of the wall. 

However, adding a primer on top of the dark paint can easily cover it up. Moreover, it makes your job a lot easier if you decide to put up a lighter color. 

Now, here’s a list we made to show you how a primer helps to cover dark paints-

  • Using a primer will provide you with a nice and smooth surface. When the surface has no rough areas giving it a smooth finish, it ensures a better paint job. Any kind of paint will stick a lot better when it’s put on over a primer.
  • Primers clear out any kind of stain that’s on the surface. This becomes more important if you choose to put up a lighter paint to cover the dark paint. The primer will make sure that the stains don’t mess with the paint
  • Finally, primers will deal with any kind of shiny surface. If you didn’t know a lot of dark paints offer a shiny and glossy appearance. This can make it hard for the new paint to stick. But primers are there to save the day. 
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What to Look for in a Primer for Covering Dark Paint?

Now you have the basic idea of what a primer can do for covering dark paints. But we’re not done yet. You still need to know how you can get the best primer for dark walls

That’s why prepared this guide so that you know what to look out for when buying a primer-

Color and Look

Choosing the color and look is completely up to you. You can choose whatever look you want. However, color plays quite an important role here. 

Suppose, you want to cover up your dark painted wall. Now, you can’t go for transparent looks, can you? 

Even though transparent primers do a great job of priming and they’re fantastic products. They’re useless when it’s about covering up a dark paint. 

What you should be looking for are white primers. Although you can go for tinted primers too if that’s what you prefer. 

You see, white primers will give you the clean slate you need. The new paint will have its original color. On the other hand, you get one advantage. 

You can match the color of the tint and the paint you’re going to put on. Together these two can provide an excellent paint job. 

Finally, let’s talk about the looks. Matte, satin, glossy whatever look you prefer, it doesn’t really matter. At the end of the day, you’ll be putting paint over that so choose whichever you like. 

Types of base

When buying a primer, you have to know about the types of primer bases. There are mainly 2 types of primer bases and all of these serve different purposes. 

  • Oil-based primer: These primers were originally made to use on wood. However, you can use it on walls too. In fact, it’s necessary to apply oil-based primers if you want to apply oil-based paint. 
  • Latex primer: Latex primers are the go-to primer for walls, drywall, metal, and so on. It even works when you put it over another pre-existing layer of paint. Even though it’s not as durable as oil-based primers, the drying time is significantly lower. 


Question: Can primers cover dark paint?

Answer: A white primer can actually give you a clean slate to work with. If you see that one coat isn’t doing the job, you can always put on two coats. 

Question: How long can you paint after using a primer?

Answer: Latex primers can dry in only 30 minutes but you should still wait for at least 3 hours. 

Question: How many coats of primer do I need?

Answer: It really depends on your project. But usually, 1 or 2 coats of primer will be more than enough. 

Question: How to Cover dark paint?

To Summarize

So, that’s all we had to say about our list of best primer to cover dark paint. We tried to explain everything as in-depth as we could. But we admit there might be some unintentional mistakes. 

That’s why we have the comments section for you. Whatever is bugging you we can fix it for you. Good day to you! 

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