If you have kitchen or bathroom cabinets that have seen their better days, replacing them is never the best option. A good paint job can inject the trusty old pieces with a fresh breath of life and give your living space a significant facelift.

If you choose to do the work yourself, the most prominent contenders would be Nuvo Cabinet Paint vs Rustoleum makeover kit. Each set is low-cost and comes with everything you need to complete the makeover.

Since both the products are pretty similar, this article will help you decide the best cabinet refinishing kit between the two.

Which is Best—Nuvo Cabinet Paint Vs Rustoleum Makeover Kit

There is no simple answer when deciding between similar products like Nuvo cabinet paint vs Rustoleum cabinet paint kit. Both products come at a pocket-friendly price that helps you save money on your purchase.

Each kit also carries everything you need to complete the paint job yourself, making them the most DIY-friendly options currently on the market. 

Without a clear-cut winner between the two contenders, the best way out is to examine the pros and cons of each product and see how they relate to your specific project requirements.

You can find these details in our Nuvo cabinet paint and Rustoleum cabinet transformations kit reviews below. Additionally, consider the few differences that set the two cabinet painting kits apart.

For instance, the Nuvo cabinet paint is ideal for DIYers who are new to painting cabinets or bathroom vanities. The paint is self-leveling to eliminate brush marks, so it is easier to achieve a refined look.

On the other hand, the Rust-Oleum cabinet paint kit on wood tends to offer a more professional-looking finish. It is also best to use it if you have at least some experience with painting to make the most of it. 

While both paint options are excellent for a DIY project, our preferred choice is the Rust-Oleum product. Aside from delivering a more professional-looking finish, it tends to be more durable than its Nuvo cabinet paint counterpart.

Giani Nuvo Cabinet Paint Reviews

Nuvo Titanium Infusion Cabinet Makeover Kit - Easy DIY...
  • Ultra-White Brilliance: Experience the transformative power of Titanium Infusion, an ultra-white hue inspired by the artist’s palette – perfect for a modern, timeless look.
  • One-Day Transformation: Redefine your kitchen cabinets in a single day with our brush-and-roll application - no professional help needed.
  • All-Inclusive Kit: Each package covers 100 square feet, ideal for the typical kitchen, and includes all the necessary tools for a flawless finish.

Nuvo cabinet makeover paint is a self-leveling product designed for painting different cabinet surfaces, including wood, metal, vinyl, melamine, and laminate. It comes in an all-inclusive kit, complete with all the necessary painting paraphernalia.

This Nuvo cabinet paint kit combines water-based acrylic paint and primer, so you can paint your cabinets directly without priming their exterior surfaces. 

Once you have your kitchen cabinet surface clean and dry, you can complete the entire process in less than 12 hours. Having the water based acrylic paint and primer in the same product reduces the number of coats you must apply and cuts the project’s overall time. 

The paint is quite durable by itself and does not require any topcoats as most cabinet paints do. Once you apply the paint, your work is done; you can expect it to maintain its color without a problem.

If you want paint with no pungent smell, the Nuvo water-based cabinet paint may be ideal for you. It boasts a low VOC profile, making it entirely safe to use, especially if sensitive to a strong odor.

Company information – Giani cabinet paint review

Giani is the company manufacturing the Nuvo cabinet makeover paint. It specializes in DIY paint kits

kits with the mission to help homeowners rescue their outdated décor with painted makeovers.  

The general opinion of the products – Nuvo cabinet paint kit reviews

Nuvo Hearthstone Cabinet Makeover Kit - Easy DIY 7-Piece...
  • Versatile Greige Charm: Hearthstone, a soft, warm greige, adapts to grey or beige depending on its surroundings, echoing the natural stone fireplaces of the Irish countryside.
  • One-Day Transformation: Redefine your kitchen cabinets in a single day with our brush-and-roll application - no professional help needed.
  • All-Inclusive Kit: Each package covers 100 square feet, ideal for the typical kitchen, and includes all the necessary tools for a flawless finish.

Nuvo cabinet paint kit has everything you require to complete the painting project. Since it combines primer and paint in one product and comes with everything needed to paint, it is an excellent product for a beginner.   

The paint does not require any elaborate surface preparation to use, making it easy to apply. However, painting over a worn surface without some form of preparation is never a good idea. 

So we recommend light sanding before painting, even though the manufacturer says you do not have to sand or strip an old finish to use this product on your kitchen cabinets. 

Additionally, while the paintbrushes included in this kit are pretty good, the paint rollers are not the same. The covers do not seem to do an excellent job as they tend to leave some fur on your kitchen cabinet finish. Consider sticking to the brushes or buying your rollers altogether. 

Nuvo Cabinet Paint pros and cons 

Here are some of the reasons that make this makeover kit a favorite choice for many users according to Nuvo cabinet paint reviews. 


  • The paint does not require any elaborate surface preparations.
  • It is easy to use.
  • It is self-leveling to eliminate brush strokes and achieve a smooth finish.
  • The paint is durable on its own and does not require any additional topcoats. 


  • Some customers complain about the rollers included in the kit, so you may have to buy separate rollers to use on your project. 

Introducing Rustoleum Makeover Kit

The Rustoleum cabinet transformation kit is an ideal option if you have some previous painting experience. It is designed to provide professional-looking results and includes what you need for surface preparation and paint application. 

The kit has enough paint to cover up to 102 square feet of cabinet surface, about the size of all the cabinets. So the chances are that you will remain with enough product for future use.

You also get scrub pads and a de-glosser for your surface preparation and decorative glaze, glazing cloth, and a protective topcoat for finishing after applying the paint. There are also stir sticks for getting your cabinet makeover kit ready.

If you are not too confident in your DIY skills, you have nothing to worry about. The kit comes with an instruction manual and DVD that you can watch to get everything correct.

The general opinion of the products – Rustoleum cabinet paint reviews

Rust-Oleum 263232 Cabinet Transformations, Small Kit, Pure...
  • 101-Square-Foot kit is perfect for kitchen cabinets bath vanities and furniture
  • No stripping no sanding no priming
  • Easy to use no special skills required

The Rustoleum cabinet paint requires multiple steps to get a good finish, a possible challenge for a beginner.

The process involves scuffing up the cabinet surfaces with scrub pads and de-glossing them before painting. Afterward, you need to apply the decorative glaze to give your painted project a refined look. 

Since the paint is not self-leveling, the quality of work you put in will directly influence the outcome you get.

Rustoleum Makeover Kit pros and cons 

Here are some of the things that could make Rustoleum your product of choice. 


  • The product creates a durable finish. 
  • It includes everything you need to get professional results.
  • There are multiple color options to choose from. 
  • You do not have to strip or sand the cabinets before painting. 
  • The paint can work on multiple surfaces.


  • No brushes or paint rollers are included in the kit (Check our list of paint brushes for oil based paint).
  • The makeover product involves multiple steps to use. This can be time-consuming. 

Nuvo Cabinet Paint vs Rustoleum Makeover Kit (Side by Side) 

The two most popular DIY cabinet paints, Rustoleum and Giani’s Nuvo cabinet makeover kits, have close similarities that could make it hard to choose between them. 

However, we have researched and identified the distinct characteristics that could make one a better choice for you than the other.

Read along to see which way to go from the Rustoleum and Nuvo cabinet makeover paint reviews.


Both Rustoleum and Nuvo kitchen cabinet paint kits are typically sold at less than 80 dollars. This is a significantly fair price considering that each kit comes with most of the items you need to complete the project. 

Verdict: it is a tie

Materials included in the kit

The Nuvo Cabinet Makeover and Rustoleum cabinet transformation kits include the items you will need to complete the project. However, the Rustoleum kit does not include paint brushes, rollers, or pads for applying the paint. 

The complete list of items in the Nuvo kit includes two 31 oz cans of self-leveling cabinet paints, one roller arm, two roller covers, two angled paintbrushes, an instruction manual, and a wooden paint stir. 

On the other hand, the complete list of items in the Rustoleum kit includes a de-glosser, scrub pads, decorative glaze, protective topcoat, decorative glazing cloth, stir sticks, instruction manual, and a DVD. 

While both kits include all the essential items for completing the project, the Nuvo set is complete. Therefore, you can work with it without spending money on any additional item, unlike Rustoleum which does not include paintbrushes or rollers for application. 

Verdict: Nuvo wins

Ease of use

The Nuvo cabinet makeover kit is relatively more straightforward to use than the Rustoleum option. It requires no preparations before painting, so you do not have to sand or strip anything or remove the kitchen cabinet doors before applying the paint. 

Because it is less work, you can finish the work in less than a day. In any case, we do not recommend painting without sanding the cabinet surfaces. Scuffing them up will make the paint sticks better, and the work should take only a few minutes to complete.  

On the other hand, Rustoleum requires deglossing the surface before painting. Also, you must apply a top coat after the paint to make it durable. 

All these things considered, the Nuvo product comes on top in user-friendliness, especially for beginners. 

Verdict: Nuvo is the winner

Customizable finish 

Nuvo paint’s straightforward application comes at the cost of customization. The product does not allow much room for customizing the finish in any way you like.  

If you want a customized look, consider going for the Rustoleum paint instead. The kit comes with a decorative glaze that you can use in customizing the appearance of your painted finish.  

Verdict: Rustoleum is the winner 

Professional-looking results 

While both Nuvo and Rustoleum create desirable finishes, adding a layer of decorative glaze can take the results to another level. This option comes with the Rustoleum cabinet transformation kit. 

Once you have created your desired look, you can use the decorative glazing cloth included in your Rustoleum kit to make the results more professional-looking.

Of course, using the glaze is optional, but it is highly recommended to enhance the look of your paint finish.

Verdict: Rustoleum is the winner 

Usable surfaces

The Nuvo and Rustoleum products are designed for use across multiple surfaces, with only slight differences between them. 

You can use Nuvo on units made of wood, laminate cabinetry, and primed or painted metal cabinets. So if you have unsealed kitchen cabinets or plywood ones with metallic parts, you may want to prime them first before using the Nuvo paint on them (Here are some of the best primer for plywood cabinets).

The paint product will adhere to the wooden parts but not on the metal cabinets without a primer.   

Similarly, Rustoleum will work on wood, melamine, laminate cabinetry, and painted metal cabinets.

Verdict: it is a tie

You may also want to learn about kitchen cabinet plywood thickness.

Preparation requirement—Rustoleum cabinet transformations vs Nuvo

Ideally, the Nuvo paint requires no stripping or sanding before painting. The manufacturer claims you do not need to prep the cabinet surfaces for the paint to stick. You also do not need to take apart the cabinet doors to use the paint. 

This being the case, you could say the Nuvo cabinet makeover kit requires almost no preparation to use on your project. However, you cannot say the same about the Rustoleum cabinet transformation kit.  

The latter requires that you disassemble your cabinet before using it. Moreover, the paint will stick better if you scuff up the surfaces before painting, even though the manufacturer claims you do not have to sand or strip anything. 

Verdict: Nuvo is the less demanding of the two

Coverage—Nuvo vs Rustoleum cabinet paint

Both Nuvo and Rustoleum kits come with enough paint that covers 100 square feet of cabinet surfaces. This is the approximate size of standard kitchen cabinetry.

As such, any of the kitchen cabinets painting kits should provide enough coverage for your cabinets entirely.

Even though Nuvo covers 100 square feet and Rustoleum could reach 102 square feet, the difference is minimal.

Verdict: it is a tie

Recommended Reading: Best Gold Paint for Wood

How to Paint Cabinet with Nuvo Makeover Kit

Much of what you will need to remodel your kitchen cabinets with Giani’s Nuvo cabinet paint will come with the kit.

However, there are a few extra items that you may use during the exercise that will not come with your purchase. Let us list everything here: 

  • A pair of hand gloves 
  • Fine grit sanding pad 
  • Eye protection 
  • A clean rag or tack cloth 
  • Nuvo cabinet makeover kit 
  • Painter’s tape 
  • Plastic sheeting or drop cloth 

Steps to follow 

Once you have these items in place, you can follow these steps to paint your kitchen cabinets and give them the makeover they need. 

Step 1: Prepare your workspace

You will not want to muddy the floor with paint while redecorating your cabinets, so we recommend covering it with a drop cloth or plastic sheeting. 

You also need to wear rubber gloves to protect your hands and eye protection to keep any particles or liquid from getting into your eyes. 

Step 2: Prep the cabinets

You do not have to remove the cabinet hardware, but we encourage doing it anyway. The painting will be a lot easier with the doors removed. Still, it is optional and upon you to decide what you find easier. 

You want to ensure there is nothing inside the cabinets, so remove all items in storage and any hardware connected to the cabinets, such as the drawers. 

Inspect the material for any grooves, nicks, and scratches that may require patching. If any, fill the holes up with wood filler and let them dry completely (Check our guide on how to fix a hole in wood).

Any parts with wood filler will require sanding to ensure they sit flush with the rest of the surfaces. 

Step 3: Scuff sand and clean the surface

Light scuff sanding is essential in ensuring durable paintwork. Ensure you cover every inch with the sanding pad, then wipe the dust with a tack cloth. 

Step 4: Tape off all the edges

Applying painter’s tape on the edges where your kitchen cabinets attach to the wall will ensure clean edges and a more professional-looking finish. 

Step5: Apply the paint

You can use a roller or paintbrush to apply the paint. But rollers tend to do better on flat surfaces, with the paintbrushes better suited for painting the edges, nooks, and crannies. 

Ensure you apply the paint according to the manufacturer’s instructions to get lasting results. Once done, allow the freshly painted surfaces to dry before putting them back to use. 

See Also: How to Thin Rustoleum Paint for Spraying

How to Paint Cabinet with Rustoleum Paint Kit

Your purchase should come with much of what you will need for the project, but not all of them. So, here is a list of all the things you will require: 

  • Rustoleum cabinet transformation kit 
  • Hand gloves 
  • Fine grit sanding pad 
  • Eye protection 
  • Tack cloth 
  • Painter’s tape 
  • Dropcloth or plastic sheeting
  • Paint rollers 
  • Paintbrush 

Steps to follow 

The Rustoleum product page includes an easy 4-step guide to painting new cabinets. The kit also has a DVD and user manual to guide you on how to paint. That notwithstanding, here are the steps you will need to follow.

Step 1: Prepare the cabinets

Consider starting by covering the kitchen floor with plastic sheeting to protect it from accidental spills.

Next, remove everything inside the cabinet and take it apart. Ideally, you want to detach any drawers and doors that might stand in the way.

Also, use wood putty to fill any grooves or dents on the surface, and let them dry fully. You will need to sand the filled areas to let them sit flush with the rest of the surfaces.

Step 2: Clean the cabinets 

Use soap and water to remove any dirt and grease from the surfaces you want to paint. Then wipe and let them dry.

Step 3: Tape off all the edges

You need to apply painter’s tape on the edges and connectors to ensure clean edges and a more professional-looking finish.

Step 4: De-gloss the cabinet surfaces 

This is the point to use the scrub pad and de-glossing solution included in the kit. Ensure you follow the instructions provided and scrub in the direction of the wood pattern.

Step 5: Apply the bonding coat

Use the stick you’ll find in the kitchen cabinets refinishing kit to stir the bond coat. Next, use a synthetic bristled brush to apply an even top coat of the bonding agent over the surface and let the bond coat dry.

Wait for two to three hours and add another layer to make it at least two coats.

Before you go ahead, do you paint the inside of the kitchen cabinets? Read to find out first.

Step 6: Apply the decorative glaze (optional)

This is the point to use the decorative glaze on your cabinetry to get a customized look. The product should do a professional-looking paint job at bringing out your cabinet’s wooden patterns.

After applying it, ensure you wipe out the excess with a clean cloth.

Step 7: Finish it off with the semi-gloss topcoat

The final part is to apply the semi gloss topcoat to ensure better protection. Once done, allow it to dry for 12 hours before reassembling the cabinetry.


What is the best kitchen cabinet paint kit?

Nuvo kitchen cabinet paint kit is the best for beginners and new DIY enthusiasts. It is straightforward to use and requires little preparation to use. Additionally, Nuvo cabinet makeover paint kit reviews indicate a high level of customer satisfaction with the kits.

What type of paint do professional cabinet makers use?

Professional cabinet makers typically use professional-grade lacquer due to its lovely, silky-smooth feel on cabinet surfaces. Additionally, there are also some professional-level water-based options that experts use. 

What kind of paint is most durable for kitchen cabinets?

The best paint for kitchen cabinets is traditional oil-based paint such as ProClassic Alkyd Interior Enamel, which provides a harder and more durable finish than latex or water-based acrylic paint when fully cured.

Is Rust-Oleum paint good for kitchen cabinets?

Absolutely. Rust-Oleum Kitchen Cupboard Paint is one of the best paints available for kitchen cabinets; it gives an ultra-durable, water-resistant, flat matt finish. You just have to consider your intended Rustoleum cabinet transformations vs paint color to see how they fit.

Do you have to sand with Nuvo cabinet paint?

NO. Nuvo Cabinet Paint does recommend sanding. However, consider using a de-glosser and 2-3 coats of primer before applying the paint for the best results.

What is the best wood for cabinet making

The best woods for kitchen cabinets are pine, oak, hickory, cherry, and maple. Pine, oak, and hickory are more readily available and affordable. Maple and cherry) are considered luxury wood and, therefore, pricier and more difficult to find.

Kitchen Cabinet Refinishing Kits Summary

So, which is the best cabinet paint kit between Nuvo cabinet paint vs Rustoleum cabinet transformation kit? If you are a beginner, you may want to go for Nuvo for painting cabinets.

Otherwise, consider the Rustoleum cabinet makeover kit for professional-looking results.

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