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Best Shed Paint

We’ve all been there – you’re scrolling through social media and you see someone who’s painted their shed an amazing block color. A few posts down you see another person has painted an intricate landscape on theirs, perhaps a beach or the countryside. You look out across your backyard and see your bland, plain wooden shed. You sigh and vow you’re finally going to transform it.

But where do you even begin? There’s a lot more that goes into painting a shed than meets the eye. For starters, sheds go through a lot outside – extreme weather conditions like rain and hail, and insect damage in the summer – not just any old paint will do.

The best shed paints are equipped with protective properties to keep your shed from deteriorating over time. It’s important to keep the base happy so you can enjoy your colorful shed for a long time thereafter.

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Seems simple, right? You need an outdoor wooden paint that’s going to protect your shed from the harsh weathers while keeping it nice and pretty. Well, it is quite simple, but when there’s plenty of products on the market it can be quite daunting and difficult to find the right one, which is why we’ve found the top five shed paints to narrow your choice down.

After researching all the different types of shed paints, we’ve determined that there are a few market leaders within the industry which can be seen through our top five list. If this selection doesn’t include what you need, these brands are sure to have another product that is perfect.

In a hurry? This is our winner!

Our rating:
Cuprinol Ducksback 5 Year Waterproof for Sheds and Fences, 5 L - Forest Green
  • Wax enriched water repellent
  • Weatherproofs sheds and fences for up to 5 years
  • Quick drying and low odour

After looking through a wide variety of shed paints on the market at the moment, almost all of them have a lot of mixed reviews – some love it, some hate it. Our top choice, however, is collectively agreed upon that it is a great shed paint for a number of reasons. This has to be the Cuprinol 5 year Ducksback Paint because: 

  • Cuprinol is a trusted brand who have years of experience within the industry. 
  • This paint gives up to five years of weather protection. 
  • Each coat only takes one hour to dry enough that it is shower resistant, a particularly helpful feature in the UK.

Best Shed Paint – Comparison Table

Best Shed Paint – Reviews

Our Winner

Cuprinol Ducksback 5 Year Waterproof for Sheds and Fences, 5 L - Forest Green

Cuprinol Ducksback 5 Year Waterproof for Sheds and Fences, 5 L - Forest Green
Our rating:

Cuprinol is a market leader in outdoor paints, which is why their name is mentioned twice on our list. This high quality paint comes in a five litre pot and it claims to keep your shed weatherproof for up to five years – you’ll hardly have to treat the wood afterwards!

In fact, this paint is so waterproof that it’ll be shower ready just one hour after painting, which is perfect for people who live in rainy parts of the country. Moreover, the application has never been so easy! The formula is full of wax and therefore non-drip so you won’t have to worry about the paint drying with uneven bumps.

The formula of this paint is water-based and therefore safe to use around your plants and pets. It also gives off almost no odor so you won’t be suffering through your painting. The wax within the paint dries and creates a seal so that no water can get to the wood and cause damages.

This 5 litre tub of paint covers up to ten panels of a fence with one coat and comes in five different natural colors for you to choose from.

  • Up to five years of shed protection.
  • Dries enough to withstand rain showers within one hour of painting.
  • Made by a trusted brand.
  • Tin of lid isn’t very sturdy and can come loose easily.
  • Shed needs to be properly prepared before using this paint.

RONSEAL RSLGPSL25L GPSL25L Garden Paint Slate 2.5 Litre

RONSEAL RSLGPSL25L GPSL25L Garden Paint Slate 2.5 Litre
Our rating:

Much like the Cuprinol Ducksback paint, Ronseal’s Garden Paint is a great option for giving your garden a splash of color. Ronseal offers 28 different colors, ranging from muted shades to darker hues, which are perfect for everyone no matter what look you’re going for. You can also choose to get the pots in either 2.5 litres, 750ml or 250ml so you have the option of buying a tester pot beforehand commiting to the big tub.

This paint is for gardens which means it can be used on almost any surface found in your backyard – primed metal, stone, terracotta, brick and more. This allows you to be super creative and design a very colorful space that your neighbours will envy.

It won’t just color your shed, it’ll also give it a protective casing to prevent damages that naturally occur from harsh weathers. The more coats you use, the more protected the wood will be and therefore it’ll last much longer.

Once you finish your first coat, you’ll only have to wait one hour before the second coat – it’s that quick drying. The final product will be resistant to cracks and the paint won’t peel off any time soon, which is a big plus.

  • Lots of colors to choose from.
  • Good coverage from just one coat.
  • Great at protecting the wood underneath.
  • Slow postage.
  • Excessive harsh weather may lead to slight color changes.

Cuprinol CUPGSWIL5L 5 Litre Garden Shades Paint - Willow

Cuprinol CUPGSWIL5L 5 Litre Garden Shades Paint - Willow
Our rating:

Our second installment of Cuprinol paint on our list, their garden shades range comes in a variety of muted colors such as this one, Willow. Moreover, this paint is very versatile and can be used not only on wood, but also stone, brick and terracotta. Have leftover paint? No problem! You can pretty much paint everything else in your garden the same color!

This formula can either be used to enhance the grain of the natural wood with one coat, or create a matte full coverage look in two coats. No matter which look you decide to go for, the wood underneath is fully protected for up to six years.

Cuprinol offers a guide for rough sawn wood, which is the type of wood sheds are made from: with a brush, one litre will cover 3-5 square meters, and with a spray bottle one litre will cover 2-3 square meters.

This water-based paint is completely safe around pets and plants and gives off little odor so you can enjoy your painting experience instead of having to wear masks and protective gear. The drying time is super quick at only one hour so you don’t have to strategically plan to paint your shed while tracking the weather.

  • Wood protection for up to six years.
  • You can either choose an enhanced wood look or a matte block look.
  • Lovely muted colors.
  • Paint pots are prone to leaking during postage.
  • Coats less when using a spray bottle than a brush.

Johnstone’s - Garden Colours - Natural Vanilla - Exterior Wood Paint - Fade Resistant - Suitable for Garden Furniture Outdoors - Fence Paint - Dry in 2 hours - 12m2 Coverage per Litre - 2.5L

Johnstone’s - Garden Colours - Natural Vanilla - Exterior Wood Paint - Fade Resistant - Suitable for Garden Furniture Outdoors - Fence Paint - Dry in 2 hours - 12m2 Coverage per Litre - 2.5L
Our rating:

The Johnstone’s Gardens Colours paint is another excellent option for coloring your shed as it’s excellent on all surfaces and textures of woods. So much so, in fact, that you can use this on more than just your shed. It can be used on fences, tables and chairs, summer houses, arbours and much more, so why stop at the shed?

There are fourteen lovely colors to choose from, some natural and some colorful, some muted while others are bright and bold. You can also choose to get the tubs in either 1 litre or 2,5 litres. This is very beneficial as how many times have you had to begrudgingly buy a new massive tub of paint for one small patch that the first tub didn’t quite cover? The option to get a smaller amount saves you wasting your money which is always a nice touch.

This paint applies evenly so you can leave it at just one coat if you want the natural wood to peek through without there being massive streaks making it look worse than it should. However, the paint takes a mere two hours to dry between coats and therefore means you can build up the coverage without having to take days out of your schedule to complete this project.

Once painted, your shed will be protected from the elements for up to four years. It is both harmless to plants and pets once dry so you don’t need to supervise your pets every time they’re in the garden.

  • Considered better than market leaders.
  • Great selection of colors.
  • Coverage is excellent even after one coat.
  • May find that pots may leak while in transit.
  • Not as vibrant colors as the picture makes out.

Ronseal 5L One Coat Life - Quick Dry Garden Shed & Fence Paints 5 Litres (Dark Oak)

Ronseal 5L One Coat Life - Quick Dry Garden Shed & Fence Paints 5 Litres (Dark Oak)
Our rating:

Another Ronseal product on our list, their One Coat Life paint is perfect for all your shed and fence painting needs. How many times have you looked at your shed and thought that if it didn’t take so long, you’d love to give it a nice and fresh lick of paint? Well, that’s exactly where Ronseal’s paint comes in!

Designed specifically for busy on the go workers who don’t have days to keep painting fresh layers to build up the coverage, Ronseal One Coat Life paint only requires one coat while still offering a perfect finish. What’s more is that the one coat will be dry within 1 to 2 hours so you can just paint it whenever you want without having to check the rain schedules.

This five litre tub covers up to six meters squared per litre, and you won’t have to allow for extra paint for more than one coat, so it should be pretty straightforward to determine how many tubs you’ll need.

There are six natural colors to choose from to ensure your shed blends seamlessly into your garden, each with full coverage and a matte finish. Your shed will be fully protected after one coat and even extreme weather conditions won’t phase your freshly colored shed.

  • Only takes one coat to get full coverage.
  • Fully weatherproof.
  • Great quality.
  • Paints in the same shade may be different colors so you’ll need to mix them together before applying.
  • Quite thick consistency which is hard to spread.

Best Shed Paint – Buyer’s Guide


Your shed, your rules! You can paint your shed as bright or as muted as you want, to match it perfectly to your garden and lifestyle. Included in the list above there are a mix of colorful and natural looking paints, so you’re not subjected to bright colors when all you wanted was a nice brown shed.

Still not got much inspiration? Let’s look at some of the colors that you could go for to brighten up your garden and protect that trusty shed:

White or Pastel Colors

White or light colors will reflect the summer sunlight and make your garden even brighter. This is great for people who like to entertain in their gardens or who just love bright spaces! Bear in mind that lighter colors are more likely to show dirt and dust, so you will need to clean it more often than darker colors.

Dark Grey or Black

Speaking of dark colors, painting your shed grey or black will give your garden a modern look with a standout shed. Keep in mind that this will attract heat in summer and heat the inside of your shed up considerably more than lighter colors, so don’t keep anything in there that’s likely to melt.

Bright Colors

Bright colors are fun and exciting! Moreover, you can coordinate your shed to whatever color your growing flowers are. Pinks and purples will go great with lavender while yellows and oranges will compliment tulips and daffodils. Or better yet, you may not even have to plant any flowers if your shed is bright enough!

Brown or Green

These two colors are the most traditional colors for sheds as they help to blend into the surroundings of your garden. Brown will make the wood look as natural as possible while green will perfectly compliment any shrubbery you may have.


Patterns are an extra step up from painting your shed a block color. It requires more patience, more creativity and more paint, but the results are often great and much more enviable. Popular patterns for sheds are either rainbows, landscapes or painting it to look like a house. Pinterest has thousands of ideas, so head there and take a look.


Now you’ve established what color you want to paint your shed, you’re going to want to establish a budget. Depending on a load of external factors, you are most likely going to need more than one pot of paint, which can quickly increase how much you’re spending. We’ve listed a few below:


The quality of the paint is vital when choosing which make to go for. Cheaper paints are going to be thinner and therefore need more than one coat to even show up. This can eat away at your budget and time, so it’s better to choose a paint that’s of higher quality.

Wood Surface

Depending on the wood used to make the shed, some materials soak up paint much more than others. More porous woods, such as mahogany, are going to have a harder job at showing the color after one coat because it’ll all be sucked into the wood. If you have treated and primed your shed before painting you can prevent this happening so much, but it still may not be as visible as non-porous woods.

Color of Paint and Wood

It goes without saying that if you’re trying to paint a darker wood a light color, you’re going to need more pots of paint to achieve full coverage. On the other hand, painting a light wood a darker grey or black will need less pots of paint. This will affect your budget greatly.

Durability of the Paint

The durability of the paint you choose will affect how often you’ll need to treat the shed to prevent deterioration. Oil-based paints are the most durable in comparison to water-based paints. Oil based paints are also often cheaper than water-based paints. Having said this, the latter is safer to use, produces no fumes and are safe to use around pets and plants.

Shed paints will also often have protectant properties included so that the wood underneath is protected from even the harshest of weathers, so it’s worth looking for paints that include these to prevent you having to continuously treat your shed every couple of weeks.

Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of paint do you use on a shed?

Sheds are made of rough sawn wood rather than typically smooth woods, which means they need a paint with a different formula than other garden furniture needs. Look for a high quality paint specifically for fences or sheds, as these should be formulated correctly.

It’s also worth looking for a paint with protective properties that will keep the wood from rotting after particularly bad weather.

How do you prepare a shed for painting?

Before you even think about painting your shed, you’re going to need to do some extensive prep work. First clean the shed and ensure it’s free of all dirt and mould spores – you may need to scrub at it. Then fill any holes with wood filler and sand the whole shed down to remove any old paint.

Now it’s time to prime and treat the wood. This needs to be done on completely dry wood so wait at least 48 hours after the last rain. A good oil-based or wood treatment will prevent the shed from deteriorating quicker than it should and will then prevent the paint from bubbling.

Now you’re all ready to paint your shed and boast about it proudly on social media!

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