How to Skim Coat Ceilings and Skim Coat Walls

Whether it is from removing wallpaper in a rush, or being a little too aggressive when moving furniture,

Walls and Ceilings will sometimes get badly damaged.

Skim coating is the act of applying a thin coat of plaster, or mud, to your walls in a thin layer with the goal of smoothing or repairing the wall to make it smooth. It’s a great way to get your walls nice, smooth, and looking great!


But how do you skim coat walls? Let’s do a step by step analysis on how to Skim Coat a Wall/Ceiling:

Step 1: Prep Your Room before Painting

Before you begin the skim coating, you have to prep the room before Interior Painting . In order to do this, you must:
• Clear out all furniture and wall decorations and cover the floor with a painting drop cloth
• Remove all plastic coverings from electrical sockets and cover them with plastic
• Replace and/or repair any major drywall holes
• Remove any nails from the wall, filling the holes in with joint compound

Step 2: Skim Coat Plaster the Walls and Ceilings

Now it’s time to actually start the skim coating process.
• Grab a bucket of joint compound and stir with an electric drill until it’s completely smooth. You can also use premixed plaster. CGC 20 is a common one you can get from your local Home Depot or hardware store.
• You want the compound to have the consistency of cake batter at this point.
• Scoop the compound onto your hawk and apply it to the wall in a vertical direction with your drywall knife.
• Make sure that the surface of the wall is completely smooth, and then allow several hours to dry.

Step 3: Sand the Walls and Ceilings

Once the first coat of plaster has dried, sand smooth with a pole sander and 200-220 grit sandpaper.

Step 4: Check Your Work Carefully

Scan and check for any imperfections in the walls or ceilings.
• Repeat steps 2 and 3 if needed.
• You may need to do more than two coats of plaster to get the wall perfectly smooth.
• Switch from vertical to horizontal application to ensure an even coverage of the wall to get it as smooth as possible.

Step 5: Prime the Surfaces

Apply Primer:
• Once you are satisfied with your skim coat plastering work, apply a latex based primer to the wall to seal everything in.
• Let dry, then check AGAIN for imperfections. If there are any imperfections, repeat step 2, 3, and 4.

Step 6: Apply Your Finish Coat

Apply finish coats of paint/wallpaper:
• Once you are happy the surface is completely smooth, apply a finish coat of paint or wallpaper depending on the application.

And you’re all done. Congratulations on your brand new smooth walls!

If you aren’t feeling up to the task, no worries! With over 25 years of experience in home renovations and Home Painting in Toronto and the GTA, Home Painters Toronto can get this job done for you. We are a top rated Interior painter on HomeStars.com and are regularly seen on House and Home Magazine’s Media Channel . We offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all Interior Painting, Interior decoration and Interior Renovation.


Please call us NOW at 416.494.9095, or email us at Brian@HomePaintersToronto.com to get a free quote for your skim coating project.

From The Owner & Founder


Hello and welcome!

I’m both deeply honoured and flattered you are considering using our services.

Since 1987 when I was at York University simply earning my way through school, I’ve had the privilege to meet and work with thousands of amazing homeowners like yourself.

Besides the birth of my daughter, there is nothing more satisfying than seeing a homeowner’s life change when we have transformed their dream home into a masterpiece. For that reason, we take our jobs very seriously and are committed to our cause.

At Home Painters our mission is to paint homeowners’ dreams, and make your painting experience last a lifetime!
I look forward to hopefully meeting you one day, as it brings me tremendous joy to make homeowner’s dreams come true.