Looking to DIY painted brick steps for your front porch? Here’s a DIY project where we completely transformed this brick porch with brick paint. DIY instructions included.

disclosure:  This post is sponsored by Sherwin-Williams®.

painted brick steps

I wasn’t sure whether I should start with the before or the after when discussing how to paint brick steps. Or how we transformed our front porch by working on a simple project of painted brick steps by painting our brick floor and metal railing.

The before won.

Have you ever in your life seen a more pitiful front porch?

I’ve been walking on this front porch since my bangs went all Flock of Seagulls and my pants went all stirupped. It’s always looked like this for as long as I can remember. The bricks are kind of a reddish-brown and the grout is dirty and stained and broken in places and there are specks of paint on the brick from different times the house has been painted.

And the worst part?

Are you ready?

Look at this.

painted brick steps before bricks

Here’s where the front porch meets the front steps.


This is real life.

This is EXACTLY what the bricks look like when you walk up the front and head toward the front door. On top of the brick situation, the railing is also in bad shape – chipping and rusting. I mean, I try to distract people with wreaths and planters and Christmas decorations during the holidays, but the truth is—no matter how hard it tries this brick is just not cute.

front of house with brick steps

Maybe the color has aged over time?

Maybe it was a thing to have two completely different brick colors? But the challenge is that the brick colors fight with each other.

And fight with the paint color on the house, Rushing River SW 7746.

using brick paint on the porch

At first, I planned on replacing the brick. Maybe just the brick on the top? That wouldn’t be too expensive? Right?

Ummm.  Have you ever priced replacing brick?


And I don’t have a fortune.

I have kids going to college.

It was even more expensive because the brick isn’t exactly level and between the cost of ripping the existing brick out and leveling the surface and installing new brick? I could have taken all of us on a cruise to the Bahamas.

painted brick steps two different types of brick

Good thing I found an inexpensive solution.

Good thing I researched how to paint brick steps.

Good thing I found something that literally transformed my house in a weekend.

using brick paint on the porch

How to DIY painted brick steps

Meet my wonderful superhero that transformed my painted brick steps.

Sherwin-Williams Porch & Floor Enamel.

I have never met a paint I loved more.

porch brick paint

Can you see how thick it is?

Look at that beautiful paint.

And the best part?

It covered our porch and front steps and the brick foundation around the exterior of our house in one coat. We let the first coat dry and touched it up a little here and there, but it really didn’t need it in most places. I’ve been dreading painting the front porch and steps because I thought it would take so many steps. When learning how to paint brick steps and the porch, I thought we’d have to prime it and paint a zillion coats and put up caution signs so no one would walk on it. But in the end, all we needed was this paint to take the front porch from this….

painted brick steps project before pictures

 ….to this painted brick porch and painted brick steps.

painted brick steps after photo

And this.

And this.

painted brick steps front of house

And this.

Can you even believe the transformation?

Isn’t it AMAZING?

Doesn’t it look so classic and clean and like a completely different porch? And it didn’t cost a college education—just a couple cans of Sherwin-Williams Porch & Floor Enamel.

Here are the details and some of my best front porch brick painting tips.

What color paint did you use?

When painting the brick floor outside, we used Cityscape SW 7067. I actually love that entire paint strip. I also looked at Grizzle Gray SW 7069 and Peppercorn SW 7674, but Cityscape was the perfect light gray to go with the paint color on the house, Rushing River SW 7746, which you may recall we painted a couple years ago with Sherwin-Williams Emerald Exterior Acrylic Latex Paint.

Did you use a primer?

No. We just applied the paint directly to the brick.

What paint sheen did you use?

The Porch & Floor enamel comes in a Satin sheen and is tintable to many colors. I love the Satin because wanted to create the appearance of brick which isn’t glossy.

brick paint project

What prep did you do to get ready to paint brick steps?

We thoroughly cleaned the brick and swept it to make sure there was a clean surface for the paint to adhere to. We also made sure to remove any loose debris or mortar so we had a smooth surface to paint.

Can you paint brick steps?

Yes. With the proper prep and the right paint, you can paint brick steps. It’s been a year since we painted this porch and these steps and the paint has really held up.

How long did the painted brick steps take to dry?

It was a sunny day, so the paint dried to the touch within one hour. It’s recommended to wait for four hours before you recoat. We didn’t walk on it for 24 hours to make sure it set up properly.  We didn’t move the benches and planters back onto the porch for several days.

using brick paint on the porch with paint brush

How did you apply the paint to paint brick steps?

We started brushing the grout lines first to make sure they were covered. We took a medium-sized paintbrush and painted the grout lines and around the bottom of the fence on the front porch. We then used a roller or a paintbrush for painting the brick floor outside and the rest of the flat surfaces. On the vertical surfaces, like the front of the steps and the brick foundation, we used a brush.

We also worked on painting the railing that surrounds the porch. Here’s a before picture.

brick paint

It was pretty rough. It has been painted and repainted and then painted again through the years. The paint was chipping off in spots and it needed a makeover of its own. First, the entire railing was power-washed to remove any loose paint or debris. Next, we lightly sanded any super rough areas to make sure that the paint had a smooth surface to adhere to. Then we primed the railing. This is the primer that we used, All Surface Enamel Oil Primer. Its primary function is to give the top coat something to adhere to. It works well on projects like this with rust and corrosion, and it’s designed to work with metal, like our porch railings.

Quick tip: you can have the store tint your primer if you are working with a darker paint so you won’t need as many top coats. We had the primer tinted to gray.

Here’s the primer coat going on the railing.

Can you almost hear the metal giving a sigh of relief? It’s an amazing primer. It’s an enamel product that’s a little thicker than latex primer and designed to coat the metal railings and disguise imperfections.

And then?

After all the prep work, we were ready for the final coat.

We used this oil-based product, All Surface Enamel Oil Base in the gloss sheen in the color Tricorn Black SW 6258.

Tricorn Black SW 6258 is one of my favorite blacks. The front door of the house is painted with this color and I wanted to continue the color onto the porch railings. The paint was the perfect paint for this task. It’s chip-resistant and designed to work with metal, like our front porch railings.

And now?

using brick paint on the porch

The front porch railing next to the painted brick steps looks like this.

The amazing thing? It doesn’t look tired and worn and exhausted anymore.

It’s freshened up and it looks like new again.

Here’s a close-up of the railings so you can see the difference that a coat of paint and primer makes.

The gloss of the paint accentuates every detail on the vintage railings.

And now our makeover is complete.

Here’s the view of the painted brick steps from the front door.

It makes me sigh every time I get the mail.

I cannot recommend this paint or saving a fortune on installing brick enough.

And now?

We have a beautiful front porch….

….and a college fund for our kids.

PS I have an entire Pinterest board with some other fun paint projects here.

PPS Want to see how the porch held up two years later after a snowstorm? I wrote about it here.

*WARNING! Removal of old paint by sanding, scraping or other means may generate dust or fumes that contain lead. Exposure to lead dust or fumes may cause

brain damage or other adverse health effects, especially in children or pregnant women. Controlling exposure to lead or other hazardous substances requires the

use of proper protective equipment, such as a properly fitted respirator (NIOSH approved) and proper containment and cleanup. For more information, call the

National Lead Information Center at 1-800- 424-LEAD (in US) or contact your local health authority.

Disclosure:  this post was written in collaboration with Sherwin-Williams®.

All opinions are my own.

Please see my disclosure page for more information.

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  1. Image for Carrie Carrie

    A fresh coat of paint, a bit of elbow grease and a sunny day...what a difference ! And yes, I did hear that sigh......beautiful. Are your neighbors a bit envious of the love the porch received??? ;)

    1. Image for Shelley Shelley

      Absolutely beautiful, and so timely! Maybe because it is spring I’m sure a lot of people are considering painting porches and steps, just like you. I will be painting mine within the next few days and have taken screenshots of your products. Thank you so much for the suggestions.

  2. Image for Nancy Nancy

    Fabulous! Even though it wasn’t as complicated as the expensive approach would have been i know it still was hard work. You’ve definitely earned a lovely manicure! Please let us know next year how it is holding up? Goodness, soon you will run out of projects on that glorious home. (Dreaming...they never stop!)

  3. Image for Lorri Lorri

    Looks lovely, isnt it great to see your hard work look so nice. Question for you? Do you put anything on the bottom of yr planters? I have marks from them and they wont come off. Painting the porch would be a good idea for me but I would want tp protect the finish after that hard work. Hope you had a lovely Easter !!

  4. Image for JC at the uncommon pearl JC at the uncommon pearl

    This looks so amazingly fresh and clean! I'm smiling sighs too and making note of these great products. I love SW Tricorn. It's a true and pretty black in my little opinion. We are using it on a rental property we are fixing up to sell for my Mom inlaw. Happy mail retrieving!

  5. Image for Donna Marie Donna Marie

    Neatty Indeedy!!! A lot of work, but a great payoff!!! Nice welcome for those who use the front door!!! (And you saved a lot of money.)

  6. Image for Jenn Jenn

    Lovely transformation! Paint is the best! Our porch railing needs a coat as well....I love chippy paint, but not on my porch railings. I wish I did because man, it's a lot of work to paint railings!! Great job on your project!

  7. Image for Susan Daniel Susan Daniel

    Oh my goodness!!! This looks so wonderful and pulls everything together and the hard work was worth it! Getting rid of the red brick makes a HUGE difference!!

  8. Image for Teresa Gonzales Teresa Gonzales

    ❤️ how clean and fresh the front porch looks after all your hard work!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thanks for all the details- we need to repaint our front and back pitches and you have us all the information!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  9. Image for Leslie Watkins Leslie Watkins

    Our porch has always been a struggle. And the screened in porch—worse. Ours is concrete and has issues. Thanks for the encouragement! Hopefully this process will help the front porch.

  10. Image for Lucie Lucie

    I am just noticing that your windows are white but your storm door is black. I need to replace our storm door. How do i choose a color - my windows are white and our railings are black... Do you have a haint blue on porch ceiling? It is so pretty!

  11. Image for Teresa Teresa

    Karianne, What a transformation to your front porch! Painting the brick really updated the area and I love the color. I would like to give a shout-out to Sherwin-Williams Duration Exterior Paint as well. Hands down its been the best exterior paint we ever used. Our house was painted over 12 years ago and still looks great. My hubby power washes it once a year and after it looks like it was just painted.

  12. Image for Regina Merrick Regina Merrick

    Beautiful! You've just reminded me to go outside and take a bunch of "before" pics of my front porch. Oh. my. goodness it's in rough shape. We're actually looking at replacing floorboards and tuck-pointing, and stuff I don't even know we need to do yet . . .

  13. Image for Deedra Deedra

    That is one beautiful transformation!!! It all looks beautiful and welcoming. I'll be right over..... Have my sweet tea ready!!

  14. Image for Tara @ Stilettos and Shiplap Tara @ Stilettos and Shiplap

    I've spent a lot of time and energy (not to mention money) making the outside and front view of our house a LOT better than it was when I moved in. No matter what I do to make the covered front patio cute however, it never looks cute thanks to the very stained concrete slab it sits on. I've thought quite a few times of painting it with a product something like that and now I think this year is the year! It's time! Yours turned out beautifully and I especially love that you didn't have to acid etch it or anything major to prep the surface. Thanks for sharing!

  15. Image for Kris Kris

    Haha, I think I'm the only one who caught this: "Ummm. Have you ever priced repainting brick?" Anyway, now you have me thinking about what color paint to use. Our siding color is more of a light tan. Our cement porch has been painted but I don't love the color, but I'm not sure what color to use. Ah, decisions.

  16. Image for Sheryl Sheryl

    Oh my goodness how beautiful! I love it and I love your decorating! Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge/gift/decorating ability :)

  17. Image for laura laura

    so pretty and classy! It's like a pedicure for your porch! A shallac pedicure (ba dum dum)! We are installing a new rod iron railing because our Berner puppy who is now 4 chewed the entire wood deck to the spindles in some areas. laura in colorado (formerly not a trophy wife) now a wife who does everyday edits! laura

  18. Image for Lisa D Lisa D

    Beautiful! I must say I love a big mailbox at the bottom of steps. Especially if the porch and steps are painted which becomes slippery when wet. Some mail routes have 1000 porch steps a day. Can you tell what I do? I LOVE your blog and sunny attitude. Thanks for all of your creative inspiration.

  19. Image for Laura Laura

    Wow - this looks great. If you had any spots of missing grout, did you have to replace/fill in before painting? The exterior updates make your house look like it's so proud of itself - like it's standing up straight and not slouching anymore!

  20. Image for Barbara Barbara

    I used the same porch paint on my craft room floor. I pulled up the carpet, did some prep work on the slab and painted. I was amazed how well it turned out!

  21. Image for Jamie Jamie

    Great inspiration here...thank you. I am so going to paint the brick on my front porch. Thank you for sharing and inspiring me.

  22. Image for Sue Sue

    How awesome, and weirdly coincidental? Today I was looking at my side entry, that goes to the driveway, wondering how on earth I could possibly make it even decent, much less beautiful...and here comes Karianne and SW! Going to the nearest store (Rome NY) to me, tomorrow. As I have evolved in my decorating, so have my paint choices/preferences. Just because one brand gets advertised to the max, with some questionable recommendations, does definitely not mean it is the best for our needs and situations. It is definitely worth it to find the nearest SW store and support them. It is all about choices and options and I love having so many.

  23. Image for glenda schock glenda schock

    I love your "new" porch and steps! I had just finished pressure washing my screen porch with the concrete floor ;) and I read your post. SW is my favorite paint store and I headed up there Saturday morning and picked up a few color swatches. I picked up a gallon of Dusted Olive and by 2:15 Saturday afternoon I had 225 square feet of swoon-worthy loveliness. Your tips were perfect! Can't wait to put the furniture back out there.... Thanks for all the great posts! You are a treasure!

  24. Image for Denise V Cox Denise V Cox

    KariAnne, I LOVE the porch!! What an amazing transformation!!I Such a clean and crisp look!! Your home is so very lovely! You are doing a wonderful job!! Do you by chance remember where you purchased the plant stand that the blue pot with the pink flowers is sitting on?

  25. Image for Winnie Winnie

    It looks very nice, but you didn't say anything about repairing/replacing the broken grout. Did you? And, if so, what did you use? I had someone repair some grout on my brick steps and it didn't last at all. I'd love to hear what you did. BTW, I am new to your blog and wondering if you answer questions? Looking above, many have been asked, but I don't see any responses.

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