I plan to make a built-in bookshelf and want to paint it a glossy white (so washable), and obviously need to be somehow wear resistant. From an online search, it seems that the best is an oil-based paint (but takes a few weeks to cure + the odor), which is more resistant than any acrylic, latex paint. It was also suggested 2 water based paint as being good alternatives: Target Coatings USL and Fuhr International 9100, but I can't find any dealer in the San Jose area. What paint brand/type are best for painting shelving (bookcases, wardrobes)?

  • 1
    It's a bookshelf. How much wear resistance do you need? A few coats of a good quality gloss water-based paint should work just fine.
    – DA01
    Commented Aug 28, 2015 at 21:06

1 Answer 1


Have you considered simply building it out of white melamine (plastic-laminate-covered fiberboard, available at most lumberyards in the US)? Heavy, requires special screws to get a really strong connection, but cheap and durable.

  • I'd suggest just going to IKEA. Same materials, but already pre-built and comes with the special screws already. :)
    – DA01
    Commented Aug 28, 2015 at 21:07
  • Depends on what you need. I built a 12'-wide closet wall out of 12" melamine for considerably less than Ikea would have cost me, and much less than one of the closet-customizing companies would have charged. (Broke it down again when I moved out, and it's all in my basement awaiting another suitable project.)
    – keshlam
    Commented Aug 28, 2015 at 21:36

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