Acrylic Eggshell to Mist Coat Plaster

Updated May 3, 2024 | Posted Apr 18, 2019 | Professional insight, Product Advice | 1 comment

Stick to what you know guys and girls!! Especially when it comes to applying a mist coat on new plaster! A lot of decorators now tell you to use the same emulsion as your topcoat to mist bare plaster, but it doesn’t always work.

I did a newly plastered ceiling couple of weeks ago and I’d run out of eclipse, which I normally use to mist coat. The finish was Johnstone’s acrylic eggshell and I decided to read the tin and follow their instructions. what it says on the tin is thin the eggshell down by 10% and you can use on bare plaster. This goes against everything I was taught as a decorator about mist-coat. However, I know paint formulas change all the time and if a manufacturer is telling you to do something, its got to be correct…. Right?

I thought at the time 10% doesn’t seem a lot, but I followed the instructions and applied to ceiling in the morning. I prepped it in the afternoon it just peeled off!! Really disappointing to be honest!!!

I have just mist coated a hall, stairs and landing after lunch with thinned out eclipse from Crown Decorating Centre and it’s solid!! Moral of the story, never trust what the tin says. Thing is, I’ve seen problems like this before on the Decorators Forum UK.

I will never use acrylic eggshell as a mist coat again. From now on I’ll only ever use contract matt.


Why I Use Contract Matt as a Mist Coat on Bare Plaster


It may not be as popular now, but as mentioned above, I normally use contract matt as a mist coat. I was always taught that your first coat needs to penetrate the plaster, but remain porous itself. Click here to see product options.

Contract matt does just that. It will adhere to bare plaster brilliantly and creates the perfect base for your topcoats. Paints may be changing all the time, but I’ll never deviate from this method again.

Blog written by Mark Pollitt – Professional Painter and Decorator

Updated May 3, 2024 | Posted Apr 18, 2019 | 1 comment

About the Author

About the Author

Mike Cupit has been in the decorating industry since 2002 and has mostly worked as a Trade Decorator in the domestic sector (peoples’ homes). Self-proclaimed “product geek”, Mike has a passion for paint and decorating tools. Mike now spends most of his time testing paint products and tools, comparing them to similar products on the market, and blogging about the industry in general.

1 Comment

  1. Steve A

    I have also just used Johnstone’s acrylic eggshell as a mist coat on a newly skimmed ceiling after waiting a month for the plaster to dry. I used about 20% water rather than the 10% recommended on the tin. I have read your comments with horror. How can I tell if the mist coat has failed? I have tried lightly scraping it and it seems OK. You say it peeled off when you prepped it – were you sanding the mist coat? Thanks


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