refacing or Refinishing Which is Best for Kitchen

So you’ve painted the walls and upgraded the kitchen appliances, but it’s still not enough. Those cabinets are still drab, detracting from the fresh ambience. If selling your home is a consideration, the kitchen isn’t a selling element due to worn-out cabinets. You can reface or refinish your cabinets to give your kitchen a new look.

Suppose you’re comfortable with the arrangement of your kitchen. In that case, refacing, resurfacing, or refinishing are more cost-effective options than replacing them. In today’s market, replacement costs can be pretty costly and a waste on the wrong setup. For example, if your property is older, you may already have superior quality cabinets and wood than what your money can purchase today.

Let’s check the differences between refacing or resurfacing your cabinetry:


The cabinet door or drawer front is refinished with laminate or wood veneer, while the cabinet box remains unchanged. Change the face frames, cabinet side panels, and mouldings to match. Refacing your cabinet doors and drawers will brighten them up, give them a new life, and make them look neater.

Refacing also gives your cabinets a fresh look by changing their design, wood, or colour.


Refinishing is a fantastic choice for folks who have cabinets that are still in good shape but want to make a difference. Refinishing entails stripping the cabinet door or drawer of its present colour – either by hand sanding or by using chemicals – and then reapplying a fresh paint or stain to the wood.

Moreover, refinishing laminate or Thermo foil cabinets is not an option. You cannot remove the colour from these materials, and applying paint over the top will not stay. Also, remember that even if the cabinets are stripped, going from a lighter to darker colour is simpler than going from darker to lighter.

Staining allows you to create the appearance of practically any wood you choose. If you prefer to paint the cabinet doors and drawer fronts, you have an almost unlimited colour selection.

Because you will be purchasing a lot less material, refinishing is typically the most cost-effective alternative for customers wishing to modify their cabinets. It is also easier for you to do it yourself, as opposed to refacing, which is a larger project that typically requires the assistance of an expert.

Should you reface or resurface?

Kitchen cabinet refacing and resurfacing are almost identical methods. However, refacing is a great way to keep a classic wood look. It is difficult to match a dark wood stain to a lighter wood stain if the colour is not applied to the same species and colour of the wood. In this case, refinish cabinets with either paint or vinyl to give your cabinets a seamless look.

Refacing your cabinets would need a replacement of drawer fronts and doors, and refinishing the cabinet frames. 

If your cabinetry is still in top shape, refinishing may be a more affordable option while still providing a lovely upgrade to your kitchen. Your cabinets must be free of nicks, chips, fractures, dents, cuts, and gouges to do this.

Is refinishing for everyone?

Coloured cabinets are usually not stainable. Cabinet makers don’t buy expensive stain-grade wood to paint over it. White cabinets generally have medium-density fiberboard (MDF) doors, which you cannot paint over to seem like wood. However, even if solid-colour cabinet doors are made of natural wood, they are most likely paint-grade. This means they would look horrible when stained.

Unfortunately, oak cabinets cannot be refinished. The grain will show through a solid colour refinish (lacquer or any other type). It doesn’t imply it can’t be done since everyone has different tastes. Try testing on a small area first to decide if you want to refinish or reface your cabinets.


Refacing or refinishing cabinets may be a great way to update your kitchen or bathroom without spending a fortune on new cabinets. You’ll still have a creative choice, but not the cost or disruption of a new kitchen or bathroom.

To make your Sunshine Coast home seem distinctive, Askin Cabinets offers customised kitchen cabinets in the Sunshine Coast, along with reliable installation service. Our cabinet builders can produce excellent and unique kitchen cabinets for both residential and business properties at low prices, from large-scale orders to smaller restoration projects. Get a quote, give us a call at (07) 5491 2765, or come to our showroom today!