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How To Paint Your Ceiling: 6 Tips For DIY Beginners

Looking up just got a lot more interesting.

More and more of us are inviting colour into our homes. I’ve seen duck egg blue kitchen cabinets, bright orange sofas and pink bathroom suites. Could this really be the end of the white box? 

But it doesn’t stop there. There’s been a big shift towards incorporating our ‘fifth wall’ (as my friend referred to the ceiling at dinner last week) into the colour scheme too. 

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Not only is it a great way to add some fun into a colour scheme, painting your ceiling can do wonders for the atmosphere, size and shape of a room.

Painting the ceiling and frieze can add character by making the room feel more traditional and using a dark, rich colour can make it feel cosy and warm. Stripes can give the illusion of a longer or wider room and you can add a burst of colour that might be considered ‘too much’ if it was on all of the walls. 

Painting my own ceiling and frieze in a deep pink was the best decision I ever made, it transformed my chilly lounge into a warm paradise. If it wasn’t in the same place, I’d swear it wasn’t the same room.

So if you’re itching to get on that ladder and give it a go but not quite sure where to start, then my round up of tips and tricks below will help you out. 

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What do I need to paint my ceiling? 

Obviously you’ll need to reach the ceiling, so a step ladder or an extension pole for your roller are going to be pretty essential. Then you’ll need a paint tray, some frog tape, a good quality paint paint like this one from Lick, a cutting-in brush for corners and hard to reach places and of course, a roller.

ROLLINGDOG 4”(10cm)Long Arm Radiator Paint Roller with High Density Synthetic Velour Fiber for Glossy Smooth finishes,Great for Skirting Boards, Architrave.

Long Arm Radiator Paint Roller, £7.64, Amazon

Plastic Paint Tray 9" Painting Tray Durable Decorating Roller Trays 9 Inch Wide - Pack of 3

Plastic Paint Tray 9″ Painting Tray 3 Pack, £9.99, Amazon

Frog Tape amazon

Frog Tape, £5.99, Amazon

2" Harris Seriously Good Walls & Ceilings Angled Paint Brush

2″ Harris Seriously Good Walls & Ceilings Angled Paint Brush, £4.59, Amazon

What kind of roller should I use to paint my ceiling? 

You’ll want a wide roller so you can cover lots of space quickly. If your ceiling is textured (I’m unfortunate enough to have a popcorn ceiling) then you’ll want a roller with medium thickness, a ⅜ nap should help get into the crevices. 

What kind of paint should I use on my ceiling? 

You ~can~ get specialist paint for ceilings but to be honest, the emulsion paint you use on your walls will get the job done.

Unfortunately for my neck, I’ve painted quite a few ceilings in my time and wall emulsion has always seen me through.

Matte paint is more standard but if you want something to reflect the light then then satin paint could be an interesting way to go. 

How to paint your ceiling without streaks and roller marks

Cut in the corners with a paint brush and then roller the rest.

Try your best to do each coat in one go and if it looks like you’ve missed bits, wait ‘till it’s dry to go over it, you’ll probably cover it easily with your second coat.

Depending on the quality of your paint, you shouldn’t have to do more than two coats. 

How to paint your ceiling without splatters 

For a really tidy person, I’m a really messy decorator, I get it everywhere. But painting your ceiling isn’t quite as messy as you’d imagine it to be.

To my own dismay, I decided to paint my ceiling after I’d done my walls so I knew I had to be really careful. Luckily, I managed to pull it off pretty scot-free.

The key, like with most things, is to be prepared. Cover up your furniture properly, don’t load too much paint onto your brush or roller and come armed with wipes and clothes so you can catch any spillages as soon as they happen. 

Can you paint your ceiling and walls the same colour?

One hundred percent yes! Painting your walls and ceilings the same colour can have the most beautiful effect and it makes painting easier – you can skip out all the faff with the frogtape.

Just be careful what colour you choose, think about how you’re going to be using the room; is a bright over-stimulating colour going to be too much? Do you want to lean into the darkness of a box room or add quirkiness to a downstairs loo? 

Whatever you do, go for it, trust your gut and get creative – the sky really is the limit on this one. 

Follow Lindsey on Instagram.

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