I had extremely good results using a foam mini roller and Rustoleum black oil-based enamel. I just bought a 3 pack of rollers and tossed each one after that coat. It's so durable that I don't think I could scratch it off if I tried (without razer blades and such). I tried acrylic first and it just bubbled and peeled off, so that's definitely not recommended (I just happened to have the black acrylic enamel already, so it seemed like a good choice at the time).
All that masking off and such for spray painting really looks like a chore to me.