Ever since that handsome fella from Big Brother became a brand ambassador for them, Frenchic paint has become a DIY phenomenon and you’ll do well to avoid walking into a home that doesn’t have furniture painted in their eye-catching colours.
But is Frenchic paint just a fad? A well-marketed paint that doesn’t actually provide much value?
Having used Frenchic paint due to customer requests on a fair few occasions, I’ve decided to write an honest review about my experience with it including what it can be used on, what it’s like to apply, what its opacity is like and how it holds up over time (I’m lucky enough to get repeat work from some customers so have the advantage of keeping an eye on previous jobs I’ve completed).
With that being said, here’s my honest Frenchic paint review.
What Can It Be Used On
Over the past couple of years, I’ve applied Frenchic paint to a variety of surfaces including wooden furniture, uPVC window frames, radiators, and plenty of kitchen cabinets. I’ve even tested it on 2 composite front doors, and to be honest, it transformed them both nicely. Frenchic paint is definitely versatile.
It also impressed me with how well it adhered to bathroom tiles which are notoriously difficult to paint. Would I recommend painting bathroom tiles in general though? Probably not but you could definitely get a year or so out of the Frenchic paint.
When it comes to exterior substrates, Frenchic paint has been fairly decent, particularly on my own garden pots which have been exposed to the elements throughout the winter and are still looking in top-notch condition.
Consistency and Ease of Application
The consistency of Frenchic paint is reasonable, though it can be a bit on the runny side, so you’ve got to be careful because it might flick everywhere.
Application is pretty straightforward, especially with minimal preparation needed: a light sanding and a wipe-down, and you’re good to go.
It’s worth noting that a wet brush works well, but I’ve had some horror shows where it’s taken 5 coats but this is highly dependent on the colour (black is particularly troublesome). If you’re painting a flat surface, such as uPVC doors, spraying is a better option than brushing or rolling in my experience.
The opacity of Frenchic paint is overall fairly decent. I’ve applied the Lazy range on both bare softwood and MDF and the coverage has been solid.
However, it’s important to bear in mind that some colours are more opaque than others. The Swanky Pants grey easily covered in 2, while the black, as mentioned above, was more of a disappointment, needing 5 coats.
When it comes to durability, Frenchic paint holds up pretty well. Even though it’s got a reputation for being a ‘DIY’ product, it has surprising longevity. For example, I used it early in 2021 on a client’s dining table and chairs, and they’re still in great shape. It even held its own when I used it on a shopfront – a testament to its durability.
Before buying the paint you should know that it takes a fair bit of time to harden (around 3 weeks) so make sure you know for certain it won’t get knocked or scratched during that period.
Overall the durability is pretty impressive once fully cured but if you’re planning to use it on kitchen cabinets I would definitely recommend using a hardener after painting to increase its durability.
The colour selection and shades available are expansive. You also have the option to mix individual colours to get your desired shade, which can open up some interesting possibilities.
Pros of Frenchic Paint
The pros of Frenchic paint are its versatility, ease of application, and surprising durability, considering it’s basically marketed as a DIY product. It offers good coverage and a nice finish, making it a popular choice for a range of projects. Plus, the drying time is impressive, allowing you to finish a front door in just a day.
Cons of Frenchic Paint
On the flip side, there are some downsides to Frenchic paint. The consistency can be a bit runny, and some colours require more coats than others. The paint also requires quite a bit of time to harden properly, especially when used on kitchen cabinets.
How Does Frenchic Compare to Other Brands?
When compared to other brands such as Zinsser Allcoat and Dulux Weathershield Multi Surface Paint, Frenchic holds its own. I’ve found Zinsser can sometimes require priming to prevent flaking, which isn’t necessary with Frenchic. Plus, unlike Dulux, Frenchic adheres to tricky surfaces like bathroom tiles without too many problems.
It’s true that Frenchic seems to fall into a ‘love it or hate it’ category, much like Marmite. Personally, I’ve had good experiences with it and have found it comparable to other trusted brands but I also know some decorators who have had a total nightmare with it.
Despite being marketed with a charming red heart, don’t let the branding fool you; Frenchic is not just for DIY enthusiasts or the clichéd home decorator. It’s made by TOR Coatings, the same company that makes the likes of Zinsser, Rustoleum, and Blackfriar – all fairly reputable brands. This is a professional-grade product.
Where to Buy Frenchic Paint
Frenchic is available at a variety of individual stockists around the UK but you’re best off buying it from their website which can be found here.
Whilst there are plenty of stockists, most of these are independent stores rather than paint stores so it’s unlikely you’ll be able to find your desired colour or paint type in-store.
In the end, Frenchic paint is worth considering for your next painting project. It may not be perfect, but its pros certainly outweigh the cons. Its versatility, ease of use, and durability make it a worthy contender in the market, capable of standing up to other professional paints. Like any product, it’s not for everyone, but I encourage you to give it a try and see if it’s a fit for your painting needs.