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One Year Later: Painting Kitchen Cabinets White. We’re sharing all the details on how our white kitchen cabinets have held up when painted without sanding. [post contains affiliate links, which means we may make a small commission, at NO additional cost to you, if a purchase is made. thanks for supporting north country nest!]

Oh, the kitchen…

It’s been a little more than a year since repainting the kitchen cabinets and we’ve gotten quite a few questions on whether we like the white (depends on who you ask) and if the paint has held up.

white kitchen cabinets with open shelving and green island

If you missed the original tutorial, you can check that out here and get up to speed. 

Before we dive into the details, here’s the gist: overall, things have held up REALLY well. Way better than I anticipated, especially because we didn’t sand anything before repainting. Also, the white cabinets don’t attract as much dirt and mess as the entryway built-ins.

white kitchen cabinets and green island

Of course, there are a few exceptions…

And before we share those, a quick reminder on what we used for paint:

For the upper and lower cabinets, we used Dutch Boy Cabinet and Trim paint.

For the island, we used Behr paint and primer in one.

Exception #1: The garbage drawer is the worst.

green kitchen island garbage cabinet door front

Side note: Feel free to ignore the white paint splatter on the top drawer. That was operator error when I tried a craft and didn’t think about paint splattering everywhere 🙂 Also, when screwing the draw back on, it broke, so we had glue it back together. So, to be fair, the draw doesn’t have much going for it to begin with. 

Back to the garbage drawer… I think if we had a handle, the paint wouldn’t chip as much. Also, you’ll notice black line in the middle – we put a chair in front of the garbage when we leave so the dogs stay away. As you can see, the black paint has rubbed onto the front of the door. The chipping is the worst at the top – I think that’s due to food, our hands… constant use and needing to be cleaned/wiped. I expected some paint to chip but it’s a little worse than I anticipated. We could put in a handle but at this point I don’t think it’s worth the effort.

Exception #2: The microwave area is peeling.

microwave and paint peeling

The little niche where the microwave lives is peeling. Thankfully, we have light cream paint underneath so the peeling isn’t noticeable unless you’re right on top of it. I was surprised that at this because everywhere else is holding up really well.

Exception #3: The kitchen island has slight chipping. 

paint chipping on green kitchen island cabinets

Since we use the cabinets under the cooktop the most and that’s where our pots and pans live, chipping is to be expected. And, it really isn’t noticeable. There are a few places here and there but there isn’t any peeling so it should stay fairly contained.

Exception #4: The drawers under the oven are noticeably dirty. 

white kitchen drawers under oven

I think the first disclaimer here is that our oven is a piece of crap. With that being said, we did have concerns about white cabinets to begin with. Especially because the built-ins went so horribly wrong.

However, the only noticeable “dirty” area that I have to consistently wipe down are the drawers under the oven. For some reason (and even after cleaning!) it drips onto the white drawers. As you can see, I’ve tried stuffing something to prevent the drip but it doesn’t help too much.

open kitchen cabinets in white

Overall, not too bad for 15 months of wear and tear!

white kitchen cabinets with green island

I know white cabinets are not for everyone but if you’re on the fence, hopefully this helps your decision. Because, if we can manage to keep things clean in a renovation zone, anyone can!

And, if you’re looking to repaint your cabinets, the deglosser with Dutch Boy paint seems to be the way to go!

white kitchen cabinets with green island

The final verdict? Even with a few exceptions, I am still so unbelievably happy we made the switch.

Last but not least, if you have any questions, let us know in the comments!

All our best,

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