Adding a frame to a bathroom mirror and painting the vanity are easy DIY projects that can give your bathroom a fresh, updated look without a full remodel. These small upgrades can make a big visual impact and shouldn’t take more than a weekend to complete.

Gather Your Materials

Before starting your mirror framing and vanity painting project, you’ll need to gather the necessary supplies:

  • Wood strips or molding to frame the mirror – These should be slightly wider than your mirror’s thickness. Pine or poplar boards work well.
  • Wood glue
  • Finishing nails
  • Primer – For covering the existing vanity color
  • Paint – In your chosen vanity color
  • Sandpaper – For sanding the vanity prior to painting
  • Paint brushes and paint tray
  • Drop cloths – For protecting floors and countertops

Getting all of your materials together ahead of time will make the project go faster and smoother.

Add a Frame Around the Bathroom Mirror

Framing a bathroom mirror adds polish and makes it look more intentional. Here are the steps:

  1. Remove the mirror from the wall and set it on a flat work surface.
  2. Measure the thickness of the mirror and cut your wood strips to be slightly wider. Miter the corners to create a clean frame.
  3. Apply wood glue to the back edges of the frame pieces and position them on the mirror back. Allow the glue to dry completely.
  4. Re-hang the now framed mirror on the wall using strong hangers. Make sure it’s secure.
  5. Caulk around the outer edges of the frame to give it a seamless look. Allow the caulk to dry before moving on.

Framing the mirror adds nice definition and gives your bathroom an instant makeover.

Prepping and Painting the Vanity

Painting the bathroom vanity can update its color or give a quick facelift to worn cabinets. Follow these steps for great results:

  1. Remove the doors, drawers, and hardware from the vanity. Set the hardware aside and number the doors and drawers to keep them organized.
  2. Sand the vanity surfaces lightly to rough up the finish so the new paint adheres well. Wipe away dust.
  3. Spread drop cloths in the area and apply primer to the vanity. Allow it to dry fully before painting.
  4. Apply at least two coats of cabinet paint in your selected color, allowing proper drying time between coats.
  5. Re-install the cleaned hardware and doors/drawers once the painted vanity is completely dry.

Painting the vanity transforms the look of your bathroom in just a weekend. Be sure to use high-quality primer and cabinet paint for a durable finish. Maintain the refreshed look by cleaning the vanity surfaces with mild soap and water.

FAQ About Framing a Mirror and Painting a Vanity

How do I get an even frame around my bathroom mirror?

  • Carefully measure and cut the wood frame pieces to precisely fit your mirror’s dimensions. Miter the corners neatly and check that the frame is square. Glue and nail it securely to get an even frame.

What kind of wood should I use to frame a bathroom mirror?

  • Pine and poplar are good choices as they are inexpensive, easy to work with, and take paint well. Choose wood strips that are slightly wider than your mirror’s thickness.

What’s the best way to adhere the mirror frame?

  • Wood glue applied to the back edges of the frame pieces provides a strong bond. Nailing through the frame into the mirror edges adds extra stability.

How do I get a smooth painted finish on my bathroom vanity?

  • Proper prep is key – sanding and priming ensure the paint adheres evenly. Applying two coats of high-quality cabinet paint helps create a durable, smooth finish.

How long does it take for painted cabinets to cure?

  • The curing process can take up to 30 days. Avoid scrubbing or placing heavy items on freshly painted cabinets for at least 2 weeks. The paint continues to harden for a month before being fully cured.

Should I paint vanity doors and drawers separately?

  • Yes, it’s best to remove doors and drawers and paint them separately for full coverage. Number each piece so you can reinstall them correctly.


Adding a frame to your bathroom mirror and painting the vanity provides an easy weekend upgrade that makes a noticeable difference. Use quality materials, prep the surfaces properly, and apply the paint or frame carefully for great results. Updating these two elements breathes new life into your bathroom’s look.