Drywall Texturing Techniques for Ceilings

Drywall compound is generally used to create ceiling texture.
Drywall compound is generally used to create ceiling texture. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Add texture to your ceiling for visual interest and to disguise any drywall glitches leaving your ceiling imperfect. Getting a smooth ceiling is difficult, so texture is often added to the area to cover any flaws. Texture is frequently a drywall compound hand applied or sprayed on. A variety of different texture finishes can be created. Once applied, these finishes may be painted any color to coordinate with the room's color palette.

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Ceiling's are difficult for even the best drywall expert to get 100 hundred percent smooth. Slight bends and joints of the drywall seams are especially noticeable on the ceiling due to light reflecting on the area. The texture generally hides these flaws and also works as an extra layer of sound protection by working as a sound barrier. Ceilings have become favorites to faux finish and decorate. Adding texture gives a room an unexpected visual appeal, especially when finishing with color and glaze.


Popcorn ceiling finishes were common around the 19660s through the '90s; however, some may consider the look somewhat dated. Some recent favored techniques include Spanish lace or knockdown plaster finishes. The texture appears to be randomly applied and similar to a thin stucco.


Popcorn texture is simply sprayed onto the ceiling, and it alone creates a texture. Knockdown textures may be rolled on with a paint roller, or the plaster is sprayed on. A stamping tool or drywall trowel is pushed and pulled from the wet plaster to create peaks. Using the edge of the trowel, these areas are knocked down. The finished result is a smooth texture, with highs and lows. The texture is actually no more than a few centimeters thick.

Paint and Faux Finshes

Though some people leave textured ceilings white, others may choose to add paint to the ceiling area. The textures may be painted a solid color with latex paint. Flat paint is critical for ceilings as any paint with sheen will highlight ceiling imperfections. However, if you are faux finishing, the base coat must be a satin or higher sheen. The glaze will be washed over the area and fall into the low points of the texture. Known as a "color wash," the faux finish technique creates subtle interest and accents the textured surface.


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