Monday, May 19, 2014

Tips for Painting a Popcorn Ceiling

Today I am going to share with you some tips for one of the most labor intensive paint projects one can tackle-  
painting a popcorn ceiling!
Of course I would prefer to ditch the popcorn but that would include a LOT of scraping, which of course could lead into even MORE repairs depending on what you might find when you start scraping.
So instead of scraping I decided to brighten up the ceiling with fresh paint.
To get started, you need some tray liners, painter's tape, special ceiling paint which I will talk about in a minute, and special paint rollers.
Do NOT attempt this project without a special roller made for
rough surfaces!
These special rollers work on lumpy bumpy surfaces like a popcorn ceiling and keep you from smashing down the texture whenever you roll over it.
They have more dimples/indentations in their nap unlike the traditional paint rollers so they allow for more give as they roll over the rough surfaces.
These paint rollers come in different grades and for me the "GOOD" level was just fine, but you can opt for "BETTER" or "BEST" if you prefer. 
I just didn't think it was worth the extra money to do so.
 You will also need one of these long extension sticks so that you can reach your ceiling, and of course ceiling paint.
Most of these extension sticks just screw on to your regular paint roller handle and extend to about 4 or 5 feet.
I could NEVER completed this project without the extension pole so I highly recommend it!
As for paint, I prefer to use paint specifically designed for ceilings,
but you can use any paint your little heart desires,
 and normally a flat paint works best.
Here is the paint I used:
Now, I suggest taping off your ENTIRE room.
ALL SURFACES should be covered since popcorn ceiling particles have a tendency to break off a little bit as you roll the paint roller across the ceiling and you will get little chunks of it EVERYWHERE,
along with an occasional paint drip too.
So spare yourself the pain and just tape it off before you get started.


You can see in these two pictures I have the room taped off from the molding down to the floor.
I simply bought plastic drop cloths and used painters tape to tape it up.
To save time you can purchase plastic drop cloths that have the sticky stuff already on them so that all you have to do is peel and stick it on your wall.
This will save you a TON of time!

Once everything was taped off I started rolling on the paint.
The ceiling soaked up the paint so I had to dip my roller a lot which slowed down my process but once I got going I could start seeing how much cleaner and brighter it was starting to look and I loved it!


The original ceiling color was an off white color and for the last eight years I lived with it and did not realize how dingy it looked until comparing it to the new crisp white paint. Then it was very obvious!

Because the paint roller is too large to get into the crevices where the ceiling meets the crown molding,
I got creative and used a sponge wheel that was really made for painting corners of walls,
but it worked perfectly for running along the wall against the molding.

Just simply roll your paint wheel into the paint tray and run it along the right angle of the wall and ceiling where the paint roller can not reach.

See, it works PERFECTLY! ....and SAVES YOU TIME!
If you had to use a brush along the entire perimeter of the room it would take FOREVER!


Here's my front room, about half done.....

Look how bright and clean it looks!
After the paint had some time to dry, everything started to look so much better!

Here are more pictures of my progress that show the difference in the color of the ceiling.

The light just bounces off the ceiling and the room looks so much better.

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I also took down those recessed lights and freshened them up with some spray paint as well so the entire ceiling looks so bright and white!
Ideally, every house should have a smooth, ceiling without popcorn, but if you have popcorn ceilings and want a quick and easy way to freshen them up, go ahead and paint them!
You can paint them any color you wish and besides basic painting supplies, you can do this without any special tools.
The hardest part about this project is the prep work and the fact you are painting a surface that is ABOVE you so your neck and shoulders will probably hurt after you are done,
but hey, its all worth it
when you see how it instantly updates your room!

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