How to paint a ceiling without streaks

Painting a ceiling is not that hard or time-consuming; however, most paint during the process and end up with horrible streaks.

There are two ways to solve the problem of painting the ceiling without streaks. The first one requires some time spent on preparation before you start with painting. The second one does not require any preparation work but has an extra step in between after you have finished all your painting. Both methods do not involve having to use a brush to paint the ceiling.

How to paint a ceiling without streaks, Zazzy Home

Preparation – Option 1:

The first option involves cleaning your ceiling before painting with liquid dish soap (avoid using liquid dishwasher detergent). Pour about 1/4 cup into a bucket, fill it with warm water, and then mix it with a paint stirrer until dissolved. Paint the mixture on your ceiling, then wipe it off with warm water using a sponge or cloth. You can use a mop if you prefer since it will also do the trick. Apply multiple coats until no more grime comes up. Let dry completely. 24 hours is recommended to fully dry before proceeding to the next step if you want to be extra careful not to mess up what you have achieved so far in terms of cleanliness.

Preparation – Option 2:

The second option involves cleaning your ceiling before painting by simply using clear water in a bucket and applying it with either a sponge or cloth without mixing with any soap nor cleaner product into that bucket of plain water. Once again, let it dry completely (24 hours) before you proceed to the next step.

Painting, step 1:

If you decided on using option 2 to prepare your ceiling for painting, then continue with this step which is spraying the entire ceiling in one sweep. For this purpose, we will be using a common spray bottle (found at home depot or any DIY store).

Fill half of the spray bottle with tap water and add about 10 drops of dish soap into it. Shake well until mixed. Start by shaking off the excess mixture from your spray nozzle before you start applying it onto your ceiling since there will be too much liquid coming out due to the soapy mixture present in the mixture within that bottle if applied before tilting slightly downward when pressing down on the nozzle.

How to paint a ceiling without streaks, Zazzy Home

Spray once without stopping until you have reached the other side of your ceiling. Let dry for about 15 minutes before proceeding to step 2. Using a squeegee or a clean synthetic sponge, dampen it with the mixture of water and dish soap to pre-wet it so that any streaks on your ceiling are less likely to come out on your painted ceiling surface.

Painting, step 2:

Now that you have applied all of your spray mixtures before this stage, you can proceed with the painting by either pouring some paint into a tray then start applying it straight away with a brush without taking too much time being fussy about what direction you are painting in since the purpose has been achieved just by spraying your ceiling as if you have used a roller already.

Painting, step 3:

After you have finished painting your ceiling with no streaks to speak of, you can either wait for it to dry or speed up the process by turning on a fan to blow air onto your painted surface, making it dry faster. Finally, apply the last and final touch using a damp rag (or sponge) and lightly wipe off any excess paint from your painted ceiling.

The purpose here is to take away the sheen created from applying paint onto your ceiling. Therefore, it looks more like a normal flat matte finish rather than glossy, which is what we want in this case – remove any extra paint that may be dripping down your freshly painted surface before completely drying (to be on the safe side).

Now that you have finished painting your ceiling, let it dry for at least one day or even up to 2 days before any heavy object is placed onto them (such as a chandelier) to avoid running paint streaks.

How to paint a ceiling without streaks, Zazzy Home

Any time after it has dried, feel free to place anything back on your newly painted surface. However, you are still advised against using any wet cleaning since you will get some extra paint popping up, which could become an issue if not taken care of immediately.

Enjoy your new neat-looking painting without having any streaks appear in sight!


Meet Jeff. For the last 10 years, he's been repairing and fixing problem homes - from leaky roofs to faulty wiring. He started blogging about his experiences as a way to help others who might be struggling with home repairs, and he's become something of an expert in the field. Jeff is always up for a challenge, and he loves sharing his tips and advice with others. When it comes to home repairs, Jeff knows what he's talking about. So if you're looking for some help and guidance, be sure to check out his latest guide!

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