Cuprinol Garden Shades: Uses, Review & FAQs

Cuprinol Garden Shades Review

Cuprinol Garden Shades is one of my favorites not only because of its better coverage and superior finish but also because of its easy application.

If you are in the UK market and searching for excellent wood paint that can cover all your fences and furniture outdoors, I bet this product will not disappoint you.

I remember when I was in the UK couple of years back, and have tried this product for painting one of my client’s garden furniture in Glasgow.

I agree there can be many better products arrived on the market since then.

And in fact, there are many brands sold in the market (online as well as at local stores) today.

But I still think Cuprinol Garden Shades is one of the best wood paints out there, and you should definitely give it a try.

Below in this short review article, I will reveal my experiences (with the goods and a few bad) about the product – along with details on where it can be used – and where not.

Hopefully, it will help you decide better when you want to choose a product for coating your outdoors.

Who Makes Cuprinol Paint?

AkzoNobel is a multinational company with headquarters in the Netherlands and over 50 brands worldwide, including Polycell, Polyfilla, Cuprinol, Sikkens, Dulux Trade, and many more.

AkzoNobel creates a wide range of coating systems, including decorative coatings for indoor and outdoor use, fire protection coatings, wood coatings, anti-graffiti treatments, and building plastics.

They have been in business since 1792, and within their extensive product line, Cuprinol Garden Shades is a top-selling brand for garden furniture and other outdoor wood projects.

What Type of Paint is Cuprinol Garden Shades?

Cuprinol Garden Shades is a water-based product that doesn’t contain any wax or solvents.

It’s basically a type of wood paint that can be used for painting fences, sheds, garage doors, kennels, treehouses, and virtually all the furniture items that are located outdoors.

The product’s beauty is that it can also be used on stones, terracotta, and brick surfaces, much like your traditional masonry paint.

What I like about this leading wood paint is that it’s available in a range of fantastic colors that can fabulously bring out the natural grain of your timbers without any flaws.

It covers the wood surfaces very well in just a single coat, which means you will rarely need an additional second coat as long as your wood surface is bare and adequately prepared before applying the paint.

The only reason you may need to apply a second coat of Cuprinol Garden Shades is that the timber is of a dark color, or there’s already a darker-colored stain on the wood that needs to be covered.

If that’s the case, you will need to apply subsequent coats on the same day – no longer than 8 hours.

Application tips and usage

To get the right finish from your Cuprinol Garden Shades Paint – a few crucial steps should be followed.

These include:

Step 1- Clean, dry and prepare the surface before you start painting.

Make sure you remove all the dirt, debris, mold, algae, and moss from the surface with a stiff brush or broom.

Step 2- Fill the holes, gaps, or splits in the wood surface and cut out (or replace) the rotten parts.

If there is any loose flaking old paint or varnish on the wood surface, strip it off completely to bare wood for better adhesion.

Step 3- Next, stir the paint thoroughly before application and apply the paint in completely dry conditions (above 5°C) with a brush or sprayer.

If you find any adhesion issues between coats, lightly sand the surface with fine sandpaper.

Coverage Area

Remember, the paint coverage will vary depending on what application method you use (brush or spray) and the condition of the surface you are applying the paint on.

Generally, you can cover 3m² to 12m² areas with 1L of paint with a brush.

But with a sprayer, the exact quantity will be able to cover around 2-5m².

Although the paint dries to touch in about 1 hour, you should use the surface subject to wear only after 1-2 days.

How well it worked for me?

I personally found Cuprinol Garden Shades very good when it covered all the fence panels and the shed with only one coat layer.

I used a bristle brush for application, and when dried, it offered a beautiful matt color that enhanced the grain of natural wood.

But you can use a sprayer – just remember it can be hard to remove the paint if it gets over other nearby surfaces.

Typically you will need to be cautious and use some tapes and a plastic cover where ever possible to avoid any problems from occurring.

The only drawback I found about the Cuprinol Garden Shades product is it’s NOT suitable for decking boards or floors – because it will tend to rub off fairly quickly due to heavy foot traffic.

If you apply Cuprinol Garden Shades in these areas and walk over, it can feel slippery after drying and can get cracked.

Also, note that Cuprinol Garden Shades isn’t a very good paint to be used indoors.

Because it’s a bit smelly (at least for me), I don’t recommend using them as your normal indoor furniture paint.


The Positives & Negatives of Cuprinol Garden Shades

Cuprinol Garden Shades is an excellent exterior woodcare product that can withstand the test of time.

However, there are some good and bad parts of this product that I quickly want to share.

The Good:

  • Low odor product
  • Dries quickly in about 1 hr.
  • Available in a wide range of colors
  • Easy to apply and maintain outdoors
  • Highly durable and can last for over five to six years

One best thing I love about the product is it can also be applied safely on wood that pets, wild animals, and birds come into contact with or gnaw.

This means you can use it to paint wooden dog kennels, stables, bat houses, chicken coops, etc.

The Bad:

While the pros of Cuprinol Garden Shades outweighs its cons, there are still a few problems that cannot be ignored.

These Cuprinol Garden Shades problems include:

  • It may need two coats
  • Not suitable for decking
  • Bit costly, but it is worth trying
  • It can be smelly for some people

Where can you purchase the product?

Cuprinol products are readily available online and can be purchased from stores like B&Q DIY and home improvement, Homebase, Wickes, Amazon, and many other DIY outlets in your localities.

Generally, a 5-liter bucket of this weather protection paint will cost you around £30 to £35.

If you are buying a 1-liter pack, it may, however, cost extra – about £10 to £12.   

You can check and compare a few stores to find where this premium color stain is available at the lowest price, especially if you need to buy in bulk for a bigger project – like staining your summerhouse or painting a log cabin.

TIP: If you are unsure of the product, you can get different colors of Cuprinol Garden Shades in small 125ml pots.

These are available as a sample and can be bought at the cheapest price to try the color and finish prior to buying the final product you need.

Can I Use Cuprinol Garden Shades on Metal Surfaces?

Although it’s a type of wood paint that is ideally designed for exterior garden wood structures, you can use it on metals like garage doors, aluminum fence posts, non-ferrous surfaces, zinc-coated, or galvanized metals without any unexpected adverse reactions.

Cuprinol Garden Shades should not be used on metal fittings like nuts and bolts that show signs of rust or corrosion.

Such metal fittings should be painted with rust-resistant metal paint or replaced altogether.

Related FAQs

Can I use fence paint on furniture?

You can, but make sure the paint you choose is suitable for outdoor use.

Otherwise, the elements will quickly damage your furniture.

Fence paint is designed to withstand the rigors of the outdoors to be more durable than regular paint.

Additionally, fence paint is usually cheaper than regular paint, so it can be a more budget-friendly option for painting furniture outdoors.

Can I apply Cuprinol Garden Shades on oil-treated wood?

If you desire to recolor your timber fences or garden structures treated with wood oil, the oil will most likely repel the Cuprinol Garden Shades paint.

It’s recommended either to sand the surface to bare wood or first test the paint on an inconspicuous area for adhesion.

Do I need to use a wood preservative with Cuprinol Garden Shades?

Yes, if it’s a bare wood piece or structure, it’s worth treating with a wood preservative first – to avoid wood decaying and rotting due to moisture, mold, algae, and fungi.

Make sure the wood is pre-treated with an appropriate wax-free wood preserver that does not contain any wax, oil, or silicon, as these products will penetrate the wood and can repel water-based products that are applied.

After applying Cuprinol Garden Shades, what should I do to maintain the surface finish?

Like any other paint product, it’s important to care for the painted surface when you have coated it with Cuprinol Garden Shades.

Clean the surface regularly with a lint-free cloth dampened in water.

And consider reapplying the fresh coating as soon as you notice the signs of weathering.

The Bottom Line

Cuprinol Garden Shades with special pigments can work for any type of weathered timber inside or outside.

Especially if you need to redecorate and brighten up your garden and provide a bit of waterproofing to your wooden outdoor structures – it’s a great product to choose from.

With a wide selection of colors available, you can easily pick the one that suits your character and liking.

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