Paint can add a splash of freshness to any room. However, most people ignore the ceilings while repainting the rooms – a common mistake, as ceilings can change the ambiance of the entire room. The ceilings offer a different kind of canvas with a challenge, which can prove quite messy as you constantly have to fight against gravity to prevent any splattering.

Avoiding splatter while painting your ceiling is certainly not an easy thing to do. It can be a sloppy job unless you take necessary measures against paint bespatter. While you should lay clothes or a tarp around your space before you begin the task, you can prevent making a mess if you use proper techniques. Here are some useful tips you should know to paint a ceiling without making a mess.

Things to do Before Painting Ceiling

Prepare the Space

You need to prepare the room for your painting project – get things out of the way or cover them with cloth or plastic. Remove any ceiling fixtures so they don’t get ruined by the paint. Next, clean the area, get rid of any mildew present, and fix up damaged points, if any. You can scrape away old, flaking paint, strip away the glossy surfaces, and get them ready for new paint. If you are scrapping previous layers off, you should also apply a high-quality primer to achieve the desired texture.

Aside from getting rid of earlier paint layers and stains, you need to protect your walls before you start painting the ceiling. If you are repainting the entire room from scratch then this step can be skipped. But if you have painted the walls and then done the ceiling or just painted the ceiling, you should protect the existing paint on the walls with painter’s tape. The tape will not only protect the walls but also create a neat boundary for your ceiling paint to stay within. You can run a thick strip of tape along the edge of the ceiling trim for the task.

Image: Electrosure

Adequate Safety Gear

Even if you are someone with precise hands and adept at handling a paintbrush or roller, it is advised to use adequate safety gear. You are not required to get high-tech equipment for the task as painting is a low-key project but it does pose certain health risks. Paint products do contain flammable components which can cause respiratory problems and headaches if accidently ingested or inhaled.

You not only need to protect the room from splatters but also yourself. Therefore, wearing a pair of safety goggles and overalls is a wise move. You can get a good pair of coveralls, which can come in handy to protect clothes whenever you are doing a similar job at home, gloves, protective eyewear, masks, and optional knee pads.

Also Read: 9 Air-Purifying Paints to Freshen up Your Indoor Environment

Get the Right Paint

You must buy the right paint intended for use on the ceiling. Ceiling paint is much thicker than generic paint, which makes it less likely to splatter. Therefore, you should use specialized paint from the start if your target is to avoid a mess on the floor and yourself.

Another thing to remember is to pick the perfect shade. Yes, white is a classic and no-nonsense pick for the ceilings. However, choosing a shade lighter or darker than your walls can introduce a new vibe. A dark shade will make the room feel cozy and snug, whereas a light shade will create a roomier atmosphere.

5 Tips to Paint Ceiling Without a Mess

  • First, you need to paint the corners and other hard-to-reach areas with a brush. You can get up on a stepladder and create a border of three inches wide around the edges of the ceiling. Remember the painter’s tape to protect the walls and mark a defined area for the painting
  • You can then get back on the floor and use a roller with an extension handle to complete the task. Lightly coat the roller with paint and start covering small areas. One tip that experts insist on is not to dunk the roller into the paint. Get a few paint trays adjusted on a sloped surface and roll the roller a few times to coat it evenly in the paint. Doing so will also remove the access paint and prevent drips
  • Using minimum pressure while painting the ceiling is one of the tips. You will need to work strategically across the ceiling with a light touch. This will ensure that your roller doesn’t run out of paint easily and cause any drips when you are applying force
  • You can cover the ceiling with paint using diagonal or zigzag strokes. Experts say to move the roller light and easy across the ceiling to create a diagonal stripe for you to apply the paint. It will make the process easy and you divide and conquer the vast canvas overhead. Take slow and steady strokes as haste to finish the work can lead to a mess and unflattering result
  • Once that is done, go over the entire space using long strokes to ensure an even paint coverage. You must go for multiple coats, instead of trying to cover the ceiling in one heavy coat, which will most definitely splatter

Also Read: 7 Fun and Innovative Ways to Transform Your Home With Paint

Frequently Asked Questions on How to Paint Ceiling

Q: Which is the better option, to paint a ceiling with a roller or a brush?

A: While people mistakenly think that only one – either a roller or a brush – is the best pick to paint a ceiling or any space for that matter, it is best to use a combination of the two. A brush is perfect to accurately paint edges and around fixtures, and delicate areas. A roller, on the other hand, is ideal to cover large spaces with ease and swiftness.

Image: Select Painting

Q: Is ceiling paint different from wall paint?

A: Yes. Wall and ceiling paints are created differently. High-quality ceiling paint has a thicker consistency so it won’t cause drips. Moreover, ceiling paints are prepared to paint overhead spaces with the added benefits of good coverage and low splatter. Some ceiling paints are even self-priming, which can save you trouble in priming and painting the space, doubling the job.

Q: Which paint is ideal for the ceiling?

A: Ceiling paints are different than wall paints, which is why you must choose wisely. You can simply ask the dealer to provide you with ceiling paint. Dedicated ceiling paint is durable, has a matte finish, and dries evenly. The most common is flat acrylic ceiling paint. It is perfect for low-humidity rooms, including bedrooms and living rooms.

Q: What are the best tools to paint a ceiling without mess?

A: To paint a ceiling without making a mess, you will need a good quality paint roller with an extension pole to make it easier to reach the tall painting surface. You will also need, a paint tray with a disposable liner, painter’s tape, and a ladder.

Q: How to minimize mess while painting a ceiling?

A: Before you start painting a ceiling, you will need to remove any furniture from the room and cover the floors with a drop cloth or plastic cover to prevent splatters and drippings on your valuables. You might also want to apply a primer to create a smooth surface for painting, which will reduce the chances of mess.

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Listening to her grandmother weaving nighttime tales to penning down her own thoughts, Priya developed a penchant for stories and their origin early in her childhood. After her master's in literature, she started writing copiously on diverse topics including architecture, interior design trends, and home improvement while learning the ropes of copyediting. For the past couple of years, she has been crafting DIYs for Homecrux. Reading novels, painting, and baking are her favorites on her long list of hobbies. She also loves to eat, travel, meet new people, learn about different cultures, and listen to stories.

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