Painting new plaster: Why you have to apply a mist coat and how to do it

Painting new plaster with a mist coat
(Image credit: Luke Arthur Wells)

Painting new plaster is not as simple and straightforward as you might think. You can’t just paint straight onto new plaster. Try it and you’ll soon find out why you need to start with a mist coat. But before you even think about a mist coat, it's critical that the new plaster is completely dry. Trap any moisture behind the paint and a flaking finish will soon make an appearance.

But it’s not just a dry plaster you need to think of. If you start painting straight onto new plaster you will get a poor, uneven finish. The paint will be absorbed almost immediately into the plaster, drying out far too quickly to get a decent finish. 

Steve Jenkins

Steve Jenkins is a freelance content creator with over two decades of experience working in digital and print and was previously the DIY content editor for Homebuilding & Renovating. 

He is a keen DIYer with over 20 years of experience in transforming and renovating the many homes he has lived in. He specialises in painting and decorating, but has a wide range of skills gleaned from working in the building trade for around 10 years and spending time at night school learning how to plaster and plumb.

He has fitted kitchens, tiled bathrooms and kitchens, laid many floors, built partition walls, plastered walls, plumbed in bathrooms, worked on loft conversions and much more. And when he's not sure how to tackle a DIY project he has a wide network of friends – including plumbers, gas engineers, tilers, carpenters, painters and decorators, electricians and builders – in the trade to call upon.