Can You Texture Over Plaster Walls?

Are you looking to give your walls a little more character? But aren’t sure if you can texture your plaster walls? Let’s talk about it!

You can texture plaster walls, as long as there are no significant cracks or flaws in the plaster. Any defects in the plaster will make any texture you apply uneven. Additionally, you can texture over painted plaster as long as it is flat paint, not satin or glassy paint.

There are many ways you can texture a plaster wall. You’ve just got to prep your wall correctly first!

Plaster Wall Prep: 6 Easy Steps

Before you do any sort of texturing, you need to prepare your plaster wall and the surrounding area for the oncoming construction. Preparing the wall and room for texturing is an important step that should not be ignored. With the proper preparation, your newly textured plaster wall will look great! And it won’t be stressful working on it.

Step 1: Prepare The Room

Remove any furniture from the room. Anything that is going to get in your way as you apply the joint compound (mud) or plaster needs to be moved.

Place drop cloths on the floor. Doing so will catch any dropped mud and dust that comes with texturing the plaster wall.

Step 2: Tape Baseboards

Place painter’s tape along the edges where the baseboards and light switch coverings meet the wall. This will prevent any mud from sticking to things you don’t want them to.

If you are replacing the entire plaster wall before texturing, the baseboards would already have been removed. Texture and paint your walls before putting the baseboards back in.

Step 3: Take Out Nails And Repair Holes

You do not want to deal with nails stuck in dried mud or plaster, believe me. Take nails out of your plaster wall first. Fill the holes with a spackling paste and wipe off any extra goop. Wait for the spackling paste to dry before moving on to the next step.

Step 4: Sand Down Existing Texture

Using a low number grit sandpaper, 60 grit is good, sand down any existing, overbearing texture. A rough texture already on the wall will make the new texture uneven.

Be sure to wear a respirator so you’re not inhaling the dust from sanding the plaster.

Step 5: Repair Any Cracks And Damaged Areas

If your plaster is riddled with cracks, holes, and damaged areas, these must be fixed before applying any texture. No exceptions! In the “How To Repair A Plaster Wall” section, I will go over what is needed to repair your plaster wall before adding texture. You do not need to replace your plaster wall for minor cracks and damage.

If the integrity of your wall is in danger, you may need to replace the wall. Contact a professional plasterer to determine if the damage to your wall calls for an entirely new wall. Make sure the professional looks at the plaster wall before determining what is needed.

Step 6: Wipe It Down

Wipe down the plaster wall with a damp cloth. Your main goal with this step is to remove any dust that may have accumulated when sanding down the existing texture.

How To Repair A Plaster Wall

There are many ways in which a plaster wall could be damaged. Let’s talk about three of them! We’re going to give you some great resources to help you fix the damages to your plaster wall.


When repairing cracks in plaster wall, you will need:

  • Plaster adhesive
  • Plaster repair rings
  • Spray conditioner
  • Sponge
  • Joint compound
  • Primer
  • Sandpaper

For this type of repair, make sure to have plenty of time available to work, especially if this is your first time repairing a crack in plaster walls. Here is a handy video that shows you just what to do when repairing cracks. If you are unsure where to get the supplies needed, in the description of the video are links to the supplies that they use.


When repairing holes in plaster, you will need:

  • Drywall patch
  • Mesh drywall tape
  • Drywall screws
  • Joint compound

For this repair, you will need a saw or knife to cut out the plaster around the hole and a drill to insert the screws into the drywall and the lats behind the plaster. Take a look at this step-by-step video, showing you how to repair holes in plaster.

Large Holes

When repairing larger holes in plaster, you will need:

  • Drywall patch
  • Drywall screws
  • Cardboard
  • Plywood

This type of repair is much like the repairing of smaller holes, just with an extra step. Because the holes are so big, you may need to put wood or stud anchors behind the plaster to make it stronger. If you are planning to put paint or texture over the plaster repairs, you will need to apply the drywall adhesive and joint compound to the large hole repair just like the small hole repair. Take a look at this helpful video on how to repair holes in plaster!

Adding Texture

There are several ways you can texture your plaster wall. Along with several different ways of applying texture, there is one other way you can get the texture on your walls besides a joint compound (mud).


Most texture on walls is created with joint compounds, but you can also use textured paint. Though paint is much easier to roll on the walls, it requires more precision to apply. The textured paint is similar to drywall mud and if it is applied incorrectly or too slowly, there can be obvious lines or ridges in the texture.

Additionally, textured paint only comes in limited colors. If you’re looking for that perfect Malaysian mist blue in textured paint, you’re out of luck. Better to try one of the other texturing methods and paint it the perfect shade after.

Joint Compound

Using joint compound and a little bit of water mixed in, you can create the ideal texture for your plaster wall. There are many ways you can apply the compound to get the desired effect.

You can use a paint roller to get an effect similar to Orange Peel, or you can use a putty knife at different angles to create swooping streaks in the mud. You can use plastic bags to create splotches, or you can use an old rag. The techniques are limitless! Drywall mud is incredibly forgiving, so feel free to experiment with whatever technique you want to get the desired look!

A word of caution: make sure the mud is dry before painting. Usually, it will take an entire day, which means a whole 24 hours, before the compound is dry enough for painting. To speed the process, you could point a fan at the walls. Once the wall is dry, scrape the wall with a putty knife to remove any pokey sections and flatten the wall, making it ready for paint.

Ricky Kesler

With all of the projects I've done over the years, you'd think that I work on my house full-time. But I actually enjoy other things like spending time outdoors and time with my family.

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