I love Fusion Mineral Paint, and though it doesn’t need an extra top coat or sealer, there are times when you may want or need one. For instance if you’re doing a decoupage paper on a piece of furniture, the paper needs a protective top coat. That’s where Fusion Tough Coat comes in. (all the products I used in this post will have easy shopping links grouped together at the end of this post)
To get a streak-free finish using Tough Coat or any other water based poly can be tricky. I have found a secret to putting it on and it really works beautifully to create a streak-free finish.
My experience is that if the water based finish goes on too thick, it actually dries on the top before the bottom can dry, trapping in the moisture and creating a cloudy or steaked finish. Applying with a standard paint brush is easily going to lead to it going on too thick… and because it dries quickly, if you try to go back over it with the brush to remove it or spread it out, you’ll mess up the smooth finish.
The answer to avoid that headache and create a beautifully smooth finish with Tough Coat is so easy!
This method of applying Tough Coat has worked very well for me going over both light and dark colors.
Here are the steps for the Tough Coat streak-free finish:
First of all, DO NOT SHAKE IT!
To mix up Tough Coat, it’s very important that you do not shake it, that will introduce bubbles into it and they can dry in your finish.
Instead, roll it gently,
and turn it upside down and roll a little more. It doesn’t really take all the much to mix up.
The applicator is important in this steak-free application method!
I use the Fusion Applicator Pads. They are lint free terry type fabric over a sponge and really work great.
First I get it wet with clean water.
Next, I wring as much water back out of it as I can,
leaving an evenly damp, (not wet) applicator pad.
Using a small clean tray, I pour in some Tough Coat. (Tough Coat is available in both gloss and matte finish.)
I dip in the bottom half of one side of the applicator pad, evenly coating the pad with the Tough Coat.
Then I scrape the excess off the pad on the side of the tray:
This leaves very little Tough Coat visible on the pad.
To apply it to the piece of furniture, like on this desk that I have a decoupage paper and blended Fusion Mineral Paint treatment on,
I start on one end and wipe all the way across,
to the other end.
It seems like I’m not putting any finish on the piece of furniture, but it is, just in a very thin coat.
I just keep going, working quickly so that the pad doesn’t touch the finish once it starts to dry.
If I see I missed a spot, I just leave it until the next coat.
I like to wait several hours, or even overnight is better, to let each layer dry super well before adding an additional thin layer in the same way. For most projects that require Tough Coat, like decoupaged papers, I like to do 3 layers.
Here is the finished decoupage paper and blended paint top. Because this desk is going in the bedroom that my grandkids use, I put on 5 coats of Tough Coat to really protect it.
Just to show you it can be done on dark colors too,
here it is on the dark Fusion Mineral Painted piece done in ‘Ash’. Same exact way of applying the Tough Coat. I did add the Tough Coat finish to the entire dresser just so the sheen would match the front that needed a finish applied. The front of this antique dresser has a decoupage paper on it. This is another example of the blended paint treatment. The paper is only about 2/3 of the width of the dresser, so the rest is blended with Fusion Mineral Paints to soften where the paper ends. (same blending idea as on the desk above)
Would you like to learn more about decoupage and blending paint to finish it?
This fun rustic poppy tray is a DIY Workshop Class at the Frame and Frills shop workroom. Everything you need, start to finish, to complete your own tray is provided. The actual paper ends a couple inches shy of the edges so I show you how to add paints and blend into the papered part. It so fun! Makes you feel like an artist. This ‘blending method’ added to decoupaged paper can really create a masterpiece on your piece of furniture!
Every few weeks I add a few more dates and different classes. I also am very open to creating a class and time that suits you! If you have a group of 3 or 4 people that want to take a workshop class, we can set a specific date that works for your schedules. We can set up a different class like the BYOP class. If you’re interested, be sure to contact me so we can set something up!
Here are the products I used to create a streak-free Tough Coat finish:
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To read more painting tips check out some of these other posts I’ve written: