Skip to Content

The Three Best Paint Strippers on the Market

Learn the best paint remover for wood on the market today. We’ve shared the best overall rated paint stripper, the most eco friendly paint stripper and the quickest paint stripper.

There is nothing quite like refinishing a piece of furniture to create a gorgeous and customized piece! While some restorations are easier than others, there is no doubt that stripping paint can be a messy job. Preparing the surface of your project for a fresh layer of paint is vital for the result of the piece. We want to make sure you are prepared for the work ahead of you, with listing the strengths and specialties of the BEST PAINT STRIPPERS on the market. We will also save you time by presenting some key characteristics of the paint removers to help you decide which paint stripper will be ideal for your project. 

Stripping furniture best paint remover

Make sure to check out my post on how to strip paint and stain off wood with this easy tip after you are done reading this one!

How to choose a paint remover for wood

Assess your surface before you begin your paint stripping project. The material of the surface you are stripping, as well as the condition of the surface are both important elements to consider when selecting the type of paint stripper you want.

The key is to strip all the old paint, sealer and debris so that the surface of your project is completely clean.

Sometimes this can be a daunting task if there are multiple layers of paint on your project. However, a clean surface is more attainable and far easier to achieve with the correct paint stripper.

In the descriptions of the paint strippers below, be on the look out for the type of surfaces these paint strippers work best on as well as the time frame you have to work with. The resources you are working with will help you choose the correct paint stripper for your project.  

Disclosure; this post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This does not affect the price you pay. This disclosure statement refers to the rest of the amazon links and other affiliate links in this post.

Side note; you might be interested in seeing this post with a few different METHODS and PRODUCTS to stripping furniture. You might be surprised at what I’ve used. Also be sure to check out my thoughts on using Easy Off Oven Cleaner as a paint stripper here.

Update: Since this post was written I’ve since stumbled upon a new (ALL NATURAL, NO VOC) paint stripping product. It’s easy to use, highly effective and, I have to say, beats the rest of these products hands down. It’s called QCS paint stripper by stripwell. I’m not going to rewrite this post yet, because after all, my thoughts could change with more use of this product. But for right now check out this post about my review on QCS paint stripper and make an informed decision on which paint stripper product is right for you.

QCS paint stripper by Stripwell

The three best paint strippers on the market

1) The Winner: Citri-Strip Paint And Varnish Stripping Gel

The Citri-Strip Paint and Varnish Stripping Gel is a Best Seller on Amazon and we can see why. Not only is this paint stripper a non-toxic and biodegradable gel, it is also powerful enough to remove multiple layers of paint. In addition, the Citri-Strip Paint and Varnish Stripping Gel can be used on wood, metal, and masonry surfaces. The key ingredient of this paint stripper is methylene chloride which is a popular solvent for DIY enthusiasts. It is fast-acting and will continue to strip the surface for up to 24 hours, leaving behind layers of paint and varnish.  Overall, the a Citri-Strip Paint and Varnish Stripping Gel is the best choice for most projects in need of paint stripping. 

CitriStrip paint and varnish stripping gel

Personal experience;

This is my absolute favorite paint stripper. Honestly, it’s the only paint stripper I’ll use. I love that it doesn’t have a strong smell and the gel is so easy to apply. That being said, I’ve also used the CitriStrip spray can and it works great too!

CitriStrip paint stripper spray can

2) The Eco-Friendly Option: Dumond Chemicals Smart Strip Advanced Paint Remover

Coming in second place is the Dumond Chemicals Smart Strip Advanced Paint Remover for its eco-friendly characteristics and gentle effectiveness on all surfaces. The best thing about the Dumond Chemicals Smart Strip Advanced Paint Remover are the ingredients. This stripper is odor free and water based, formulated without methylene chloride or carcinogenic ingredients. Because these ingredients are non-toxic, the paint thinner can be used indoors or outdoors. The Dumond Chemicals Smart Strip Advanced Paint Remover works well on most surfaces and can remove up to 15 coats of paint in one use. 

Dumond Chemicals Smart Strip advanced paint remover

Personal experience;

Although I have never used this product, I’ve read many reviews on it and it has a 4 out of 5 star rating. If you are looking for a product you can use indoors with very little harsh chemicals, THIS is what I would suggest.

3) The Speedy Option- Sunnyside 2 Minute Remover

Sometimes when completing DIY projects, time is not on your side. When you feel crunched for time, or simply impatient, you will want to grab the Sunnyside 2 Minute Paint Remover. This remover literally works in minutes to eats away at the layers of paint and varnish on your project. It is safe for all surfaces and it works well with oil-based finishes, specifically acrylics and latex paint and varnish. On tougher surfaces such as floors or polyurethane finishes, the Sunnyside 2 Minute Remover may need to sit for 5 minutes to really do the trick. However, waiting for only 5 minutes can still save you a lot of time for your project. 

Sunnyside 2 minute remover

The downside with this product is the heavy fumes it emits (buyer beware if using indoors). That being said, its lower price point and ease of use might be exactly what you are looking for.

Final thoughts on deciding which paint removers to purchase

Before any DIY home project, it is important to do your homework and prepare for the task at hand. We all know that preparation is never as fun as the actual project, which is why we are here to do the homework on the best paint strippers for you.

Best paint strippers on the market

Now all you have to do is decide if you want a product that is known for; the best all around paint stripper with minimal fumes, a super eco friendly paint stripper, or a fast and budget friendly paint stripper.

Check out more of my Paint reviews below:

Best White Paint Products for Kitchen Cabinets

Valspar Cabinet and Furniture Paint Review

Best Metallic Paint for Furniture

Heirloom Traditions All-in-One paint review

Rust-Oleum Home Floor Coating

Valspar One-Coat Exterior stain and sealer in solid review


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. Laura Howard says:

    Hi Lindsey, I have a large console that is covered in grass cloth and painted over it. What is the best recommended product to use to remove it? This will be my first project. 😬

    • If it has grasscloth wallpaper you will need to remove it like you would remove regular old wallpaper- that is a messy job. I wish I knew of a great product that would do this easily but normally it requires warm water and vinegar and time and energy (with a paint scraper of course). After the old grass cloth is gone then I would use a good paint stripper; probably citristrip.

  2. Kimberly Robinson says:

    They have taken methelen
    e chloride out of all the strippers . so none of the products work like they use to. It takes a whole container of stripper to do a little area. Its very frustrating. Also the sand paper is made cheaper. Thinner disks and low quality plus they raised the prices. I am very disappointed with all this. Is anyone else noticing?