If you’re in the final stages of a construction or renovation project, the next thing on your radar must be wall plastering. This stage arrives after building the structure and laying down the brick walls. Well, plastering should best be left to professionals, but it does not mean you should not do some research on different types of wall plasters to find out which one works best for you.

What’s important to understand here is that each type of plaster varies in strength from the other. So, it’s crucial to match them to your property type. It’s possible that some plaster types suit better to a specific wall structure and applications than others.

So, before you start plastering, take a moment to explore different types of plaster and choose one that perfectly complements your walls.

wall plastering

What is Plaster?

When you think of plastering, you’re probably imagining a mix of mortar, a levelling bar, a trowel, and a whole lot of dirt. But when we talk about “plaster”, we’re actually referring to the stuff that goes on your walls. Basically, it’s a building material that gives our surfaces a tough layer, both inside the house on walls and ceilings and outside of it.

It can range from a thick 20 mm lime-cement base plaster to a thin 3 mm clay filler. Plastering is an ancient skill that, and its primitive form, dates back to 7,500 BC. The oldest plastered walls ever found were in the ancient ruins of Mehrgarh, in what’s now Balochistan, Pakistan.

Why Do We Plaster Walls?

Once you find the answer to what plaster is, the next question you might ask yourself or your contractor is “Why do we plaster our walls?” If you’re trying to save some bucks on your building project, then you would want to know if plastering is really necessary.

Well, let us tell you, plastering isn’t just some fancy add-on. It is a must-have for your building. Some of the many benefits of plastering your walls include:

Types of Plastering

Now comes the most-awaited part! Different types of wall plasters and ceilings. You might be wondering if it’s going to get covered by the paint anyway; why bother going over the different types of plaster?

Well, you see, the use case for one type varies from the other. What property are you working on? What structure does your wall have? What is the intended purpose of this wall? Your answer to each of these will decide which type of plaster is best suited for your particular project.

So, with that in mind, let’s dive into the types of plaster we have and what purpose they serve.

Lime Plaster

Picture ancient Roman villas or mediaeval castles, and you’re likely envisioning walls adorned with lime plaster. Lime plaster has extreme durability, resistance to cracking, and aesthetic appeal.

That’s why this age-old technique is still used today. It is prepared using lime, water, and sand. The best thing about lime plaster is that it’s durable. Lime plaster is breathable. It means lime plaster allows moisture to escape, which prevents dampness and mould growth.

Besides, it’s known for its flexibility, allowing it to handle building movements without a hitch. Not only that, but it also boasts a lovely soft finish that perfectly complements the charm of older properties.

It’s particularly great for period properties, where it can tackle dampness and condensation problems effectively. In fact, it is a necessary material in the restoration or conservation of heritage buildings.

Gypsum Plaster

Now comes the plaster of Paris! If you want a flawless finish, look no further than gypsum plaster. Its smooth and uniform surface makes it perfect for painting or adding decorative touches.

This type of plaster is available in powder form. When mixed with water, gypsum plaster transforms into a smooth, easy-to-apply paste. Another plus point is that your plastering expert can turn your walls into a piece of art with gypsum.

Besides, it dries quickly, reducing construction time. This is one of the many factors that make gypsum a preferred choice among contractors. Additionally, gypsum plaster offers excellent sound insulation properties, enhancing acoustics in residential and commercial spaces.

Unlike lime plaster, gypsum plaster lacks flexibility and breathability, making it less suitable for period renovation projects. However, it excels in creating sleek finishes for contemporary homes and extensions.

Clay Plaster

For those seeking a sustainable and eco-friendly type of plaster, clay plaster fits the bill. As the name suggests, it’s made up of natural clay along with sand and fibre.

Clay plaster has been used for centuries in traditional construction methods. However, it is experiencing a resurgence in popularity due to its non-toxic, breathable, and biodegradable nature.

In addition, clay plaster manages room humidity between 40% and 60%, which suits human comfort. Plus, it effortlessly absorbs and releases moisture to keep a balanced environment. It’s like having a natural ally in the quest for a cosy and healthy home.

Another great aspect of using clay plaster is you can leave them unpainted. Plus, you can add pigments to clay plaster, which means getting desired colours and decorative effects without costly paints is not a dream anymore. 

Clay plaster is suited for dry interiors, where it brings out a natural, rustic charm. Recently, it has been stealing the spotlight for creating captivating accent walls. However, like any other thing in the world, it has a few limitations. Clay plaster is not suited to areas regularly exposed to water, such as behind sinks and showers.

Cement Plaster

Unlike lime and gypsum plaster. Cement plaster is prepared right at the construction site using sand, cement, and water.  It offers a durable, hard, and strong finish for both exterior and interior surfaces. What’s cool about cement plaster is that it sets pretty quickly and doesn’t cost as much as some other types. 

You can use cement plaster on all sorts of surfaces like concrete, brick, and metal lath. It acts like a shield, giving them extra protection. Plus, cement plaster does a great job of fixing any mistakes or rough spots during construction, leaving you with a nice, even surface.

However, don’t expect to get a flawlessly smooth finish as you get with gypsum. That’s why people often put gypsum plaster on top to make it smoother. Because of its high strength and weather resistance, cement plaster is suitable for a variety of applications.

These include external walls, interior walls, ceilings, and facades. Besides, it’s often used in contemporary construction projects where durability and low maintenance are priorities.

Acrylic Plaster

Modern innovation has granted us this miraculous plaster. It’s a synthetic plaster which is made using acrylic polymers, additives, and fillers. It offers a host of benefits over traditional plastering materials. The best part is that it’s waterproof, so you can apply it on damp areas.

Plus, acrylic plaster is available in a range of colours and textures. This means you can customise your walls with acrylic plaster to meet your preferences. It works well on a variety of surfaces, including concrete, wood, and metal, for both interior and exterior walls.

You can also use acrylic plaster in bathrooms, laundry rooms, showers, etc. Additionally, acrylic plaster is low maintenance and easy to clean, making it a popular choice for high-traffic areas.

Venetian Plaster

Venetian plaster, also called polished plaster, is all about luxury. It departs a timeless finish to walls that elevate their aesthetic appeal. Venetian plastic is classic, just like lime or clay plaster. But the opulent and glossy finish it exudes is non-negotiable.

The final outcome of the mixture of fired limestone and water is prepared without any added aggregates. After application, it’s finished off with a primer, a wax coat, and marble dust is added, resulting in a stunning and an all-natural look.

Plus, it’s a cost-effective option compared to real marble or limestone, thanks to its ability to replicate the look of natural stones. You can use it to spruce up media walls, hallways, ceilings, and even bathrooms, both inside and out.

Some homes boasting Venetian plaster on their walls have stood strong for over 500 years, showing how tough and long-lasting it can be.

Stucco Plaster

Stucco plaster is crafted from a blend of lime, sand, and water. However, modern versions of stucco plaster feature Portland cement. Because of its composition, it offers a rigid surface that holds up against the strongest winds.

Plus, its timeless look has been adorning houses for centuries. If you take good care of the stucco, it can add value to your home. Stucco plaster is layered in three coats to meet the approximate thickness of 25 mm. However, it’s important for you to know that each coat must be dried thoroughly before adding the next one.

Stucco plaster is mostly used for adding decorative flair to walls and ceilings. Besides, it also serves to cover up less attractive building materials like metal, concrete, cinder blocks, clay bricks, and adobe. Additionally, it’s often used as a sculptural and artistic material in different projects.

Types of Finishing

Now that you know different types of plaster, let’s take a moment and get some information about the types of finishes as well because they can also make or break the aesthetic appeal of your home. Here are some common types of finishes and what sets them apart:

Final Words

When it comes to construction, there are a lot of stages involved, and each one requires different materials. The plastering stage comes after building the walls to render them a smooth, strong, and aesthetically appealing look. So, choose the best plaster and the experts who can work with different types of plaster to elevate your walls and ceilings.

Looking for skilled wall plasterers and painters in Singapore? Let us help you transform your space with expert contractor services. Contact us today to discuss your project and receive a quote!