How to paint a newly plastered wall

If you’re doing a renovation with new plaster, it can be tempting to paint over everything. Beware! What seems like the easier option could cost you more time and money than necessary.

When painting walls that have just had their first coat of plaster put on, there are two options:

1) leave the wall bare for a couple of weeks so that the plaster can “breathe,” or

2) apply an oil-based primer to seal in odors and protect against moisture and mold.

Read on for a step-by-step guide to the latter.

How to paint a newly plastered wall, Zazzy Home

Step 1: Cleaning and Preparation

Before applying any primer, it’s important that you thoroughly clean the surface of your wall, as well as clear away all construction materials from the room where you will be painting.

You don’t want any dust or dirt getting into your paintwork! If possible, try to limit access to the room where you’re working with other people to protect your work against contamination (don’t let anyone walk across wet paint!). If this is not possible, keep children and pets out of the area entirely.

To get rid of other contaminants like dirt or grease marks that might be on your walls before starting whitewashing, make sure to proceed with cleaning, then priming.

Step 2: Applying the Primer

The primer you choose should have a flat finish, so it doesn’t reflect light. It’s always best to make two thin applications of paint rather than one thick coat, as this is more likely to give your walls an even surface.

How to paint a newly plastered wall, Zazzy Home

Allow about 30 minutes between coats for drying time, and be sure not to leave too much time between coats, or you might find yourself with some problems down the road… check out step 3 below!

Before applying the primer coat, go back over any bumpy patches on your wall with your finishing trowel. This will help create a smoother base for the top layer of plaster paint.

Once you’ve applied all your coats and everything is dry, it’s time to move on to the fun part: color! We like to opt for a single color throughout the room, so there’s no confusion about which parts of the wall have been painted and which haven’t. It also makes it easier if you ever need to do touch-ups.

Step 3: Applying Paint

Paint your base coat with a roller or brush, depending on how large an area you’re covering. If you’re painting over more than one coat, you don’t need expensive paintbrushes for this task – choose ones that look like they’ll do the job and won’t leave any bristles behind once their work is done!

The following points are important to read :

Safety first: Always wear gloves, goggles, and a face mask when sanding or scraping away old paint. And never sand or scrape lead-based paints as this is very hazardous to health.

Ensure that the area you’re working in has adequate ventilation and dust sheets to protect surrounding areas from any splattering of old paint, etc. If you’re using a sander, make sure it’s not plugged in until you are ready with your safety gear on – it might be tempting to plug it in before putting all your protective gear on but better safe than sorry!

Have an idea of what color you want before starting: It’s important to get a picture in your head of what you want your final result to look like before starting the project. If it helps, take photos of elements in the room that inspire you and make notes on paint colors from magazines or swatches.

This way, you’ll have a clear idea before spending money on expensive paint! Instead, aim for a muted finish: You might love bright colors, but think about how these high-intensity hues will work with light, often reflected in a room from white walls.

How to paint a newly plastered wall, Zazzy Home

For this reason, many people prefer a more subtle ‘greige’ tone where grey and beige merge because it makes any other color stand out strongly.

Be patient: Painting over plaster can sometimes take longer than expected, so don’t expect to have a finished room over a weekend. Also, some of the most professional finishes require many layers of paint, especially if you are re-plastering your walls, so it might be best to plan to stay with friends for dinner or a sleepover until your work is completed!

Another thing that you should know :

When it comes time to prepare your walls for painting, please give them a good wash and sand them down. This will help create a smooth surface and remove any bumps and lumps in the plaster. A good scrub with an ordinary household cleaner is probably enough: no need for anything too strong unless you’re planning on removing all the old plaster from the wall!

A clean, fresh appearance can also help create an airy feel in small rooms. As you can see, it’s not too complicated to paint over plaster – the most difficult part might be getting started! Just remember to think about whether any special techniques need to be used.

Sanding walls for painting is straightforward but make sure you follow all safety measures and ask for help if necessary. And tackling the room in sections will help keep your stress levels low and make progress seem more achievable.

Other than that, go for it! Good luck with applying paint over plaster!


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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