Painting decorative plaster stone: the subtleties of the process

Painting decorative plaster stone: the subtleties of the process

Painting decorative gypsum stone will allow you to obtain a coating that is aesthetically pleasing and able to be combined with a wide variety of interiors. It will additionally protect the surface and make its service life longer. However, it should be borne in mind that the process of staining such a base has certain difficulties. You can achieve great work results if you take into account a number of nuances..

What to choose?

You have to paint an artificial stone made of gypsum, cement or other material if you created any product yourself or just bought an unprocessed product. Painting a plaster surface is usually not very easy and quick: you will have to be patient before such work. Everything will need to be done with the utmost care. The material will have to be tested on the surface in advance: as a result, the shade does not always turn out as you expected. Different dyes can be used for gypsum.

Acrylic materials

Acrylic paints are very popular: such coatings are beautiful and at the same time protect the surface well..

They have certain properties that are required for artificial gypsum stone:

  • resistance to liquid, UV radiation;
  • vapor permeability (gypsum can create a certain microclimate in a room, because this material gives off and absorbs liquid);
  • elasticity (cracks may appear on coatings over time, but with elastic paints it is much easier in this regard).

If you want the paint’s resistance to moisture to be even higher, opt for a material that has added silicone.

Another important plus of acrylic dyes is the ability to change shade (to get the desired color, you should use a color scheme).


Copper or iron sulfate is used as an impregnation; such materials make the gypsum surface more durable. At the same time, they also give it certain shades: copper – bluish, iron – yellowish.

The dry material will need to be diluted in water. After that, you should put the products in the container (for about two hours). They should not touch each other – otherwise, areas will appear that differ in color from others..


You can use wood stain to treat plaster. Extreme care should be taken when working with acid stains. It is recommended to first choose one tile and test the material on it: gypsum products are different in composition.

Other solutions

For processing artificial gypsum stone with your own hands, you can use various impregnations, varnishes. With the help of such materials, you can get very interesting effects: the illusion of moisture, beautiful shine.

You can prepare a suitable material yourself, but for this you have to understand the intricacies of the process.

In modern stores, special paints are sold that make the surface look like natural stone. Such materials are quite expensive, but the result will be worth the money spent..


When applying a dye to a plaster surface, you need to remember some rules.

The most important recommendations:

  • Please be aware that some impregnations cannot be combined with paints. Before using this or that material, you need to carefully read the instructions for it..
  • The previously painted surface will need to be sanded first. This is not a very simple job (especially in cases where the products are already on the walls).
  • Gypsum must be kept at home after purchase. Wait at least a day before painting: the product must reach a balance of humidity and temperature.
  • The paint can only be applied to a completely dry surface..
  • The surface on which the varnish is applied shines beautifully, but remember that such a coating reduces the feeling of naturalness.

The work must be carried out in a specific order. If you do not skip the necessary steps, then in the end you will be satisfied with the results..


When choosing the most suitable tools, you need to focus on what kind of product you have to work with. If the surface is old, more tools will be needed. For a new product, you will have to prepare fewer different fixtures..

The following tools are usually required:

  • a vacuum cleaner with which you will remove dirt and dust;
  • accessories required for grinding (grinder, sandpaper);
  • sponges, brushes (for highlighting and tinting);
  • airbrush or spray gun.


Before applying the dye, you will need to carefully prepare the surface..

The procedure should be as follows:

  • Remove dirt and dust from the product. Do not wet the surface too much..
  • Sand if necessary.
  • Apply a suitable impregnation (for example, a material that makes the surface more resistant to liquid).
  • Dry the product thoroughly.

You will also need to inspect the surface. It shouldn’t have any defects..

Coating application

Decorative stone is painted in different ways.

There are recommendations that are considered universal and are suitable in almost all cases:

  • To get a uniform color, treat each piece individually..

  • If you do not want the surface to be uniform, use two tones of paint and a relief. First, apply a darker paint, lightly sand the protruding texture. Then you can use a lighter shade..
  • Many people paint decorative stone with a spray gun, but it is more convenient to use an airbrush to highlight certain lines. This way you can get the job done much faster. It is not recommended to use a brush for staining plaster, because it is inconvenient and tedious..
  • Products can be completely dipped into the composition. How much to keep them there depends on the characteristics of the particular mixture..

When the dye dries, the plaster product can become quite faded. If you do not want to spoil the naturalness with a glossy shine, correct the situation with a matte varnish. After applying such a coating, the color of the product will become more saturated..

Old marble

If you like the aging effect, you can treat the product so that the material looks like old marble..

The work is carried out in a specific order:

  • The purchased stone will need to be held for two days in a dark room. If you created the product yourself, dry it thoroughly (maximum – at 55 degrees).
  • Heat the drying oil. This should be done very carefully, gloves will need to be used when working..
  • The material is applied with a flute brush. It is recommended to apply it in 2 coats. Try not to leave untreated areas: the product should be processed evenly.
  • After a while, the surface will look like old marble..


To get a terracotta-like surface, you need to treat the product with rosin and shellac varnish, diluted in industrial alcohol. This method is similar to the previous one. The desired effect also appears after a while..

Bronze tint

If you want a bronze sheen on the surface, you will need to prepare the necessary materials and perform certain actions:

  • Apply drying oil to the gypsum surface (the gypsum should be very well saturated with this material). Then the product will need to be dried: it usually takes from eight to ten hours.
  • Process the product in 2 layers using bronze powder mixed with varnish.
  • Dry the material thoroughly.
  • Mix clean water (300 g), acetic acid (100 g) and silver nitrate (10 g will suffice). You can also add pigment.
  • Apply bronze powder to the surface (the layer should be as thin as possible). The solution will need to be applied from above. After this, oxidation will occur.
  • Take a piece of velvet and wipe the surface thoroughly.

If you want the effect to intensify, apply a solution of wax in turpentine to the gypsum surface (this will need to be done until the composition stops absorbing). A product with such a coating can be washed.

You can get a very beautiful surface with wood stain. A spray gun can be used to apply such material, but complete immersion of the product is necessary to achieve the best result. Warm up the composition slightly, dip the gypsum for a few seconds and dry it. If necessary, the product will need to be pre-wiped.

Examples of

Using vitriol, you can make gypsum decorative stones yellowish, but for greater naturalness, it is also better to apply paint to individual areas of the tile..

Stain for wood surfaces makes the plaster look very interesting..

Aged surfaces are a wonderful decor option that suits a wide variety of styles. Of course, the styles must be appropriate: Provence, retro, and so on..

Using rosin and shellac varnish, you can get a brown plaster surface with a terracotta look.

For information on how to paint gypsum stone, see the next video..

About the author