5 Tips for Painting Ceilings

6:00:00 AM

 This post is a long time coming. I used to have an off-white yucky popcorn ceiling in my living room and kitchen, but now I have a smooth, painted ceiling! I actually finished it right before the holidays, but with the holiday decorations and then the dreary winter weather, I only just now got good shots of the beautiful white smooth expanse of my ceiling.



My friends, a leak was the catalyst...a leak from some plumbing above. Into a light fixture that we didn't even like anyway. So we ripped it down, which started the whole ball rolling.








But now my friends, I can give you some tips and tricks on how to paint your ceiling. And make your life better, or at least brighter and smoother.

1. If you're starting with bare drywall, you will need more paint than you think you need.

Non-painted, non-primed drywall sucks up paint. It just does. You may want to consider primer. I was too lazy.

2. Go flat.

Flat paint is the least expensive, hides flaws the best, and is the easiest to get the sheen right as you are feathering in any touchups. This is why many painters, given the choice, will go with flat paint everywhere. However, in any other location besides a ceiling, I would advise against going with flat paint – it doesn't hold up to cleaning as well. But since my children will not be putting their grubby fingers on the ceiling (at least, I hope not), flat paint is perfect. It hides any imperfections in our sanding of the drywall! I went with Sherwin Williams Ceiling White. It's nice and bright and airy now!

3. Investigate using a paint stick. 

I used the HomeRight Paint Stick (which I received for free for review, but all opinions of it are my own). 



I love that this Paint Stick has a guard that keeps paint from dripping which is always a hazard, but especially when you're painting a ceiling. 



It's also great that you don't have to pause to reload the roller very often – you store a bunch of paint in the stick. Talk about way less messy than the usual paint tray! 


I found using a paint stick on low areas of my ceiling to be perfect (8'-0" high). However, my little 5'-5" self had a hard time being able to get enough leverage with the long stick onto the higher portions of the ceiling (about 9'-0" high). My husband has about 5 inches more than me in height and he was able to apply the pressure needed to apply paint to the high ceiling. I'm not sure if this is just a statement on my height or my lack of upper body strength, but I struggled a little bit – totally my fault. I still loved the paint stick and will be using it again for applications on walls and lower ceilings. Or maybe I'll start going to the gym and paint another high ceiling. We'll see.

4. Put drop cloths everywhere.

Even with the guard on the paint stick, we still had a couple of mishaps – not really drips, but rather stumbles. Yeah, I'm a klutz. Please don't judge, and just use dropcloths. I was really glad we did.

5. Work with a buddy.

It's exhausting to work over your head. Because of my height challenges, my husband rolled while I cut in (our typical painting arrangement). Play loud music. Have fun!


What are your tips for painting a ceiling? I'd love to hear yours!



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