The Secret to Sanding Hard to Reach Places. You’ll never use Sandpaper again!

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In this post: We’ll discuss just how to sand the little crevices of wood furniture and how to use liquid sandpaper. We’ll talk about what supplies you need and tips for getting the job done right!

If you have a piece of furniture that you love, but it really needs an update, painting it can be a great way to breathe some fresh life into your room decor!

teal dresser with graphic text that says how to sand those really hard to reach places

When I first painted this piano, I had no idea how to sand the curvy parts, so I did the best with what I knew.

Fast forward five years, and now I know better!  Isn’t being older and wiser just awesome?  I’m so glad I can walk and talk and read and write and sand hard to reach places now.

How to Use Liquid Sandpaper

Discovering liquid sandpaper, also known as deglosser was a huge game changer for me!

Before I found this product, sanding those tight spaces in wood furniture was a complete and total mystery. Now I feel much more confident when I paint furniture and my results are so much better.

Supplies you need to sand the crevices of wood furniture

Rather than trying to squeeze a piece of sandpaper up in those curves, you should stop and get the following:

sanding hard to reach places-4

This kleen strip deglosser is also known as liquid sandpaper.

How to Use Deglosser to sand your furniture

sanding hard to reach places-3

  1. Pour your deglosser into a paint tray.
  2. Dip your paintbrush and get a good coating of deglosser.  It looks a little bit like a thin liquid glue.
  3. In a circular motion, paint your deglosser on the areas that you can’t reach with sandpaper.
  4. Let sit for 10 minutes and recoat if needed.

sanding hard to reach places-5

sanding hard to reach places-7

sanding hard to reach places-6

This makes it so easy to get in all those curvy parts.

sanding hard to reach places-10

You can see in that photo above how the paint gets a dusty layer on it when the deglosser dries.

Common questions about using liquid sandpaper:

  • Do I need to rinse the deglosser before painting?
    • Nope.  Just make sure it is completely dry and then paint right over it.
  • Can I use it on the entire piece of furniture?
    • Yes you can. But I prefer using actual sandpaper where I can.  It’s just a personal preference.  I have never tried using deglosser on an entire piece of furniture, only the crevices. But if you want, give it a shot then email me with how it goes. I’d love to know your experience.
  • Can I use a rag instead of a brush?
    • You can. The directions say to use a cloth, but I think a brush gets into the creases better than a rag.  I think if you are going to use it all over the piece of furniture, then a rag might be the better option for larger surfaces.
  • Can I leave the piece overnight before I paint it?
    • Yes.
  • If the paint is still shiny, did it work?
    • It should have.  This deglosser is said to create micro-abrasions in the surface even if the paint still seems shiny. That’s what the company says.
  • How long is the deglosser good for?
    • Three years unopened and six months after opening.

I hope that answers all of your questions about using liquid sandpaper!  I love this deglosser and I hope you have great results if you should use it on your painted wood projects!

hand sander with graphic text overlay that says how to sand hard to reach places



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  1. i love deglosser! i used it on my cabinets when i painted them so i wouldn’t have to sand in the house. i removed the doors and did those outside but for the bases. 🙂 and i am 100% with you on impatient diy-ing

    1. Oh, my gosh! I don’t know where this has been my whole life. It’s like finding a long lost love!

  2. Hi, Gwen ~ I’m visiting from the Creativity Unleashed Link Party. I’ve NEVER heard of this product before, so I’m glad you shared it! I’ll have to try this the next time I’m DIYing. And, yes, I’d raise my hand as a member of the “Impatient DIYers” club! :0) Thanks for sharing!

    1. I’m so glad I’m not alone!!!

      I’m so in love with this deglosser. It saved me so much time and heartache!

  3. iI’m 69 yrs and Just Now hearing about about this magic trick!? Well, seems you. Can teach “an old dog new tricks! Yes, I’m proud to say I’m still a DIY’er. My husband says, ” Give her a can of paint, and nothing’s safe!” What years I have left will be So much easier, thanks to your sharing. You did a ” good thing” as MS would say! Now, what should I paint first……… Please do not print my email address, as you did Cassie, above. Maybe she said it was okay for her, but please not mine. You really helped a lot of innocent DIYers with this tip. Thank you so much, and my arthritic hand, wrists thank you as well.

    1. That is great, Carol! I know you are going to love this!

      I never publish emails, so don’t worry! That is just how she put in her name. It links to her blog so you can click on it and visit her. She’s wonderful!


  4. I must get some of this! I have an old dresser that needs painted but it’s upstairs and weighs about a million pounds so I’ve been putting it off not wanting to drag it outside to sand. This is perfect!

  5. Will this work on any glossy furniture? I have a desk I think is laminate that I want to paint. Also, we want to stain our kitchen cabinets. Will this work for those, too? Thanks!

    1. I think it should work on anything that is painted. Just be sure to read the label to make sure. If you want to stain, I’m thinking you’ll have to strip the wood. I would only use this if I were going to paint over it.



  6. Thanks for the product info! I, too, grow impatient and want to see the final product so I can move onto something else. Wish I enjoyed the process more. Got to get off Pinterest and go strip some more paint. UGH!

    1. You are so welcome, June! This product really makes a huge difference!


  7. Omg! This has to be best pin ever. Facing mountain of furniture to paint and dreading all the intricate sanding. I never knew about this stuff. Thank you for sharing!!!!

  8. Had no idea this product was out there…..I’m off to buy it; And, thanks for this posting!

  9. I see you applied your sander deglosser with a paint brush. My bottle directions says to apply with a soaked rag and rub in a circular motion. Does your way of applying it with a brush work well for you? I think using a brush looks like a much easier, and effective, way to use the sander deglosser. I have not used the product yet, so any advice you can give me would be greatly appreciated.

    1. I used a paint brush and it worked just fine, but you might want to test it out first! It’s a great product, for sure!

      Thanks, Lenna!

  10. What is the name of the font used for “The Secret to Sanding Hard to Reach Places”, “What the Bold Ones Say” and “Leave A Reply”? (Odd question, I know. I can’t help it though, I’m a graphic designer.)

    Side note: I plan on using your technique tomorrow. I’ll keep you posted!

    1. Hi Heather! The “leave a reply” and “what the bold ones say” font is called Sinzano, the other is called Impact. I hope that helps!

      1. I’m sorry, I didn’t mean the title of the article….but don’t worry, you answered my question anyway! LOVE IT! Thanks so much. 🙂

  11. Really excited to try this deglosser. I paint a lot of furniture that is stained and sanding off the gloss to apply paint is a pain. This sounds much easier. Is there a strong odor to this? Are you able to use it in the house. Husband has a delicate nose and complains a lot about strong smells, lol!

    1. I didn’t find it that strong, but I would test it if you have a sensitive nose! It does work really well!

  12. Do you have to wipe it down with a damp cloth or anything after you apply it/it dries? Thanks!

    1. I’m not sure, Stephanie. I don’t think I did, but I’m sure the bottle will say!



  13. Woow Amazing…you save me.I’m about to start sanding on my table legs and they are curve legs….thank you much for posting this…I was really stress
    Because is alot of work.I will definitely buy this…hopefully is not toxic or harmful to your health.

  14. I have been looking for a way to repaint some chairs I painted years ago and am so sick of the color.
    You know there is not much out there on that subject it’s all painting old furniture that has never been painted.
    I had never heard of this product either and I shop Home Depot all the time.
    I’m so glad you posted this. What a help.
    And yes I too get bored half way through its a cruse.

  15. I too am 69-years young and again bit off too much and purchased an Ethan Allen China Cabinet from Craigslist. I was just degassing the doors and having difficulty with the small places. It says to apply by rubbing in a circle; not with tiny places you don’t. I am no going to RE-APPLY IT WITH A PAINT BRUSH! YEAH!!!!

    This deglosser and Fusion Mineral Paint are my new best friends.


    1. Thanks for responding to my comment. Sorry for all the misspelled words. I am usually better than that, just did not proof read.

  16. Thank you! I’m getting read to repaint my kitchen table, chairs and stools and the sanding part seemed near impossible!

  17. When I feel like moving on to something more fun, I move on to something more fun and I’m always glad I did because I inevitably see the unfinished project, later, and get an inspiration for something WAY more cool than I had originally planned!

  18. Oh my goodness! A whole new world of possibilities has just opened up before me!!! I have a piano that I’m going to repurpose into a desk but was dreading sanding the curves! Thank you for sharing! You are my hero! I also get impatient on projects and want to give up. This will hopefully curb that temptation.

  19. Thanks for sharing this year product. I can’t wait to try it. And yes, I want to jump to new projects all the time. It seems my creative brain is always moving faster than my physical body.

  20. I just discovered the deglosser too…..I had chalk painted my iron chandelier with curly q’s and crystals. I decided it was too white and wanted some of the iron to show through. (Why can’t I ever leave well enuf alone???? I’m sure you diy folks understand!) so, I brushed on the deglosser and let it set go a minute and wiped it off….perfect patina!!!

  21. I thought I was the only one that felt that way. We just have to use our self discipline to focus through it.

  22. Omg I bought deglosser and thought it was supposed to remove the finish. *smh

    Now I understand! Ok I’ll have to use it again. Thanks for this post

  23. I’ve been trying to figure out how to refinish an old piano and bench. Now I at least know how to start! Thank you!

  24. Thanks for reminding me of this great tip AND the idea to use my paint sprayer to apply it to large pieces. What a light bulb idea! And yes–I get those “squirrel” moments when I see new ideas (like this one) and want to go with that before finishing something I’ve been working on for a while.

  25. I want to do all the cabinets in my kitchen. Going from oak finish to painted. So I think I just put this product on with a brush and it will degloss it and make it ready to paint right? I’ll read the directions when I buy it of course but just want to be sure this is what it’s for. Every DIY article I’ve read on painting kitchen cabinets talks about the hard part which is “priming” the cabinets or getting them ready for the paint to adhere. Thanks for the info.

  26. Gwen;..I’m getting a bit frustrated as I’ve used this deglosser the way the instructions say to apply it…I’ve done three coats with little to no results! I’m redoing the traditional 90’s builder banisiter and the gloss is thick..should I just brushed it on and leave? No rubbing like it states on bottle? Help getting discouraged!

    1. Huh. I just use as directed, Amy! It doesn’t remove the stain so much as just scratch up the surface. It’s primarily for painting over your current finish, I think. If I were going to restain something, I would use a finish remover rather than the deglosser.

      I hope that helps!



  27. How does this work on raw wood? I’m sanding he back of an upright piano and realized my finish sander isn’t going to fit in some sections. Will the paint and primer match on the sanded surfaces versus the liquid sanded surfaces?

    1. Hmmm… I’m not actually sure about that! I’ve never used it on raw wood. There’s no harm in trying, Lucas, especially if you know your sander can’t fit into some sections!

      Good luck!


  28. OH MY GOSH! It is like I have learned the secret to life! Never heard of deglosser and I have spent many hours and strained many muscles trying to sand that small little crevice at the bottom, around the corner and under the rim. This is going to save me so much time!! Thanks for sharing.

  29. I never knew the correct way to use this! Thank you so much! I will admit I didn’t read those tiny directions but I assumed I used it the same way as stripper. Of course this left me disappointed with the product because it didn’t remove the paint🤣. Now I know why and how to use it the right way. Oh my furniture refinishing business just got so much easier! Thanks again for sharing this great info!

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