Can I Paint Over Wallpaper?

So you’re ready to change up the look of your room, but you’re not quite sure how to tackle that outdated wallpaper that’s been staring back at you for years. Well, good news! It turns out, you can actually paint over wallpaper. Yes, you heard it right. This article will guide you through the process of painting over wallpaper, providing you with helpful tips and tricks to ensure a successful transformation. Get ready to say goodbye to that old wallpaper and hello to a fresh, new color that will breathe life back into your space!

Can I Paint Over Wallpaper?

Can I Paint Over Wallpaper?


Before starting to paint over wallpaper, it is important to thoroughly prepare the surface to ensure the best possible results. Taking the time to properly prepare will ensure that the paint adheres well and provides a smooth, even finish.

Assess the Quality of the Wallpaper

The first step in determining whether or not you can paint over wallpaper is to assess the quality of the existing wallpaper. If the wallpaper is in good condition, with no signs of peeling, bubbling, or lifting, it can potentially be painted over. However, if the wallpaper is in poor condition or has a textured surface, it is not recommended to paint over it. In such cases, it is better to remove the wallpaper entirely before painting.

Cleaning the Wallpaper

Before painting over wallpaper, it is crucial to clean the surface to remove any dirt, dust, or grease. Use a mild detergent and warm water solution to gently wash the wallpaper. Be careful not to saturate the wallpaper, as this can cause it to loosen or peel. After cleaning, allow the wallpaper to dry completely before moving on to the next step.

Repair Any Damaged Areas

Inspect the wallpaper closely for any areas that may be damaged, such as tears, rips, or holes. It is essential to repair these areas before painting over them, as they can affect the final result. Use a wallpaper repair adhesive or a small patch of wallpaper to fix any damaged spots. Smooth out any bumps or ridges with a putty knife and sandpaper if necessary.

Can I Paint Over Wallpaper?

Remove Loose or Peeling Wallpaper

If there are any areas of the wallpaper that are loose or peeling, it is crucial to remove them before painting. Use a wallpaper scraper or putty knife to gently lift the loose edges and carefully remove any loose pieces of wallpaper. Be cautious not to damage the underlying wall surface while doing this. Smooth out any rough or uneven areas with sandpaper.

Priming the Wallpaper

Once the wallpaper is clean, repaired, and any loose or peeling sections have been removed, it is time to prime the wallpaper. Priming is essential to ensure proper adhesion of the paint and to create a uniform surface. Use a high-quality primer specifically designed for wallpaper. Apply the primer evenly using a brush or roller, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Allow the primer to dry completely before proceeding to the next step.

Can I Paint Over Wallpaper?

Choosing the Right Paint

Selecting the right paint is crucial for a successful wallpaper painting project. Choose a high-quality latex or oil-based paint that is specifically formulated for covering wallpaper. Matte or eggshell finishes are often the best options for hiding any imperfections on the wallpaper surface. Consider the color you want to achieve and the desired level of sheen. Consult with a paint specialist if you need assistance in choosing the best paint for your project.

Painting Techniques

When it comes to painting over wallpaper, using the right techniques can make a significant difference in the final result. Begin by cutting in along the edges of the walls, using a brush or small roller, to ensure clean lines. Once the edges are done, use a larger roller to apply the paint evenly over the rest of the wallpapered area. Work in small sections, overlapping each pass slightly to avoid noticeable lines or streaks. Apply multiple thin coats rather than one thick coat for better coverage and a smoother finish.

Finishing Touches

After the paint has dried completely, inspect the freshly painted wallpaper for any touch-ups that may be required. Use a small brush to fix any areas that may have been missed or where the wallpaper still shows through. Take your time and ensure that the final touch-ups blend seamlessly with the rest of the painted area. Once all the touch-ups are done, step back and admire your newly painted wallpaper.

Pros and Cons of Painting Over Wallpaper

Painting over wallpaper can be a convenient solution in certain situations, but it also has its pros and cons. Some advantages of painting over wallpaper include saving time and effort compared to removing the wallpaper, as well as the ability to update the look of the room without a complete overhaul. However, there are also downsides to consider. Painted wallpaper may not have the same durability as painted walls and can be more challenging to clean. Additionally, if the wallpaper is not in good condition, it may affect the final appearance, even with paint. It’s essential to weigh these pros and cons and consider the specific circumstances before deciding whether or not to paint over wallpaper.

In conclusion, painting over wallpaper can be a viable option if the wallpaper is in good condition and properly prepared. Following the necessary steps, such as cleaning, repairing, priming, and choosing the right paint, will help ensure a successful and long-lasting result. However, it is important to assess the quality of the wallpaper and consider the pros and cons before making a decision. With the right preparation and techniques, painting over wallpaper can be a fantastic way to update and transform the look of any room.