Oct 16, 2013

an honest review:
rustoleum neverwet

have you had a chance to try rustoleum's latest product, the neverwet liquid repelling system? maybe you had good intentions, then balked at the $20 price tag.

is it really worth it??
read on for my honest and comprehensive review...
and a giveaway at the end!

the rustoleum ad is definitely intriguing. they claim the two-step neverwet system creates a moisture-repelling barrier on a variety of surfaces, from asphalt to wood, and many more in between. side note: wouldn't it have been fun to be part of the research team for neverwet?

this rainy-day project on concrete -- posted in home depot's online community of all places -- piqued my interest even further...
also, 90s music rocks. fyi.

i was most curious about the ingredients of neverwet. the only hint is warnings on each can: methyl isobutyl ketone, butyl acetate, and mineral spirits in step one and acetone in step two.

i purchased the neverwet system for my (more mundane) test subjects:
i know. could i be any more boring??
...but if i'm going to spend $20 to repel water, i want to do it on something useful.

our upstairs bathroom gets horrible -- horrible -- air circulation. to the point that i've often wondered if the vent is connected to anything at all. as a result of the stagnant moist air, i'm often fighting mold and mildew. ick-ick-ick!

mold needs water to grow, right?

...so if a surface can't get wet -- it can't grow mold.
that was my reasoning anyway.
time will tell if i'm completely bonkers.

to test my theory, i bought a shiny new shower caddy (made of plastic and metal) and a fabric shower liner. inspired by this promotional video, i got a new toilet brush too simply because i'd love to avoid that nasty cesspool of water that collects at the bottom of the container. if the brush can't get wet, the cesspool can't form -- right??

i bought the updated version of the same shower caddy we've had for years. years. if you're in the market for a caddy, i'd highly recommend it: oxo good grips. it has clear plastic trays -- with slits so water doesn't collect -- that snap into a metal frame.

i set up in a well-ventilated area.

the neverwet instructions call for two or more applications of step one:
after spraying from a few sides on the tops of the trays, i flipped them over and covered the bottoms from several angles as well. then, let dry 30 minutes. 

the instructions for step two of neverwet call for three to four coats -- the more coats, the better the liquid repelling abilities.

after a few coats of step two:
hmm. in hindsight, i wish i'd spent less on a not-as-fancy caddy. the neverwet spray made the clear trays look cloudy-slash-hazy anyway so i would have been better off (aesthetically, anyway) getting a frosted plastic or white plastic unit.

the neverwet system also left a definite texture on the previously smooth plastic as well. nothing i care about, but maybe you do. the surface now feels like very fine sandpaper -- not abrasive by any means...but no longer super smooth either.

neverwet's instructions say the item is ready for light use after 30 minutes and full use after twelve hours.

final impressions: the neverwet system seems to work for my purposes and is definitely easy to use -- it applies like spraypaint. along that line of reasoning, the frosted color is actually helpful because it allows you to see if you've missed any spots. i've heard it comes in a darker finish as well, but i wasn't able to find concrete information on that. 

side note: i had some difficulty finding neverwet when i went shopping for it over a month ago. i think they are now pretty well stocked in all the big box hardware stores by us, but you may have problems finding neverwet -- light or dark -- in-store if you live in a small town or rural area.

the cost does seem a bit high initially, but i was able to spray the caddy, shower liner (inside lower half only), and toilet brush with multiple coats so i feel i got my money's worth. i have a bit of step one left, but used up all of step two.

that's my biggest issue: because you only need two passings of step one and multiple coats of step two, you're bound to run out of top coat, while having an excess of base coat. this means you'll have to spend a whole twenty dollars more just for additional top coat. i'm hoping rustoleum will either offer the cans separately -or- adjust the sizes to reflect use. why not package a half-can of base coat with a full can of top coat? or one can of base coat with two cans of top coat?

finally, it's important to note the results are not permanent. it doesn't say how long the water repelling effects last -- i'm sure it depends on how often your item is getting wet. i'll update how much time passes before i need to respray my items.

check back -- i'll be sure to let you know the results of my mold/mildew prevention hypothesis, both on the plastic/metal surfaces of the caddy and the fabric surface of the shower liner. if it prevents mold and mildew build-up like i think it will, i will definitely be repurchasing.

[note: this giveaway has now closed.]

...NOW, for the
rustoleum has generously offered a set of their
neverwet liquid repelling system (in frosted clear)
to one of our loyal readers!

in addition, that lucky person will also win a can of
rustoleum metallic spraypaint in brass (which is really gold)
-- my most favorite spraypaint of all time!

here's just a sampling of what i've used metallic brass on...
1  |  2  |  3  |  4

you have two chances to win a set of rustoleum neverwet
and a can of rustoleum metallic in brass. 

[entry 1]
we want to know: what will you try rustoleum neverwet on?
tell us in the comments and be entered in the giveaway!
don't forget to leave your email so you can be contacted if you win.

[entry 2]
AND! pin the below WIN ME image on pinterest...
then link to your pin in a separate comment for an additional entry.
again, don't forget to leave your email so you can be contacted if you win.

the winner will be announced on tuesday, october 29 -- good luck!

US entrants only. giveaway entries must be received by 5:19am CST on monday, october 28, 2013. limit two entries per person by above methods. a winner will be selected by random.org. the winner will be announced on crab+fish on tuesday, october 29, 2013 -- as well as privately contacted within three business days. if the winner does not reply within five business days of contact, a new winner will be chosen at random. prizes provided by rustoleum usa. products tested were purchased. all opinions are our own. thank you for participating!

* mari


  1. Hmmm, I like your ideas of spraying the toilet brush and the shower caddy. I might try our sidewalk and see if it affects how snow and ice build up on it.

  2. shower tile? a diaper pail? foundation? front walkway? lots of possibilities!

  3. I think this needs to go on my outside chairs or ping pong table outside. That would protect against the really windy rain that we get.

  4. I have been wanting to try this- I would use it on some outdoor wooden art I want to paint! :)

  5. What a cool idea! I would go for bathroom applications too. We're having some shower leakage in one small spot that nothing seems to help. Maybe worth a shot!

    Thanks for hosting this!

  6. Aaaand here's my pin! :)

    Pin it to Win it! Rustoleum NeverWet Liquid Repelling System -and- Rustoleum Metallic Spraypaint in ... - http://pinterest.com/pin/397090892115979501/

  7. This stuff looks interesting. I would use it on the diaper pail and some outside decor like a chair on our porch and a wooden sign I'm in the process of making!

  8. Here is my pin:) http://www.pinterest.com/pin/91268329922289629/

  9. Definitely need this for my outdoor patio set.

  10. You could use this on anything on your patio! I like the stenciled words on concrete.

  11. http://www.pinterest.com/pin/52776626856961578/

  12. I think I would probably use it on my toilet brush, that's a brilliant idea! (email is: megan [dot] poletti [at] gmail)

  13. Definitely would try it on the toilet brush! Those things can get kind of gross.

  14. I would try it on the tub toy caddy we have! Always seeming to get moldy spots on the bottom--ICK!!

  15. I'd use it on my shoes and winter boots and gloves! -Carla

  16. NeverWet has made my life better!


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