Is Polished Plaster Suitable For Bathrooms And Spa Rooms?

Venetian polished plaster is a versatile finishing for walls, ceilings and even furniture. It has become very popular for interior decoration schemes in recent years as an alternative to tiles or regular plaster. It is made with lime putty mixed with marble dust and other pigments, and was first used by the Ancient Greeks and Romans

Venetian plaster can be used to create a variety of different finishes, including smooth and highly polished; deliberately distressed for a rustic effect; or pitted or dragged to mimic other surfaces such as concrete. It is also a suitable surface for stencilling applications to create decorative details or for corporate branding. 

The natural materials are applied in thin layers, which gives the surface a beautiful nuanced depth of colour and texture that catches the light and is also very durable. A commonly asked question is whether polished plaster can be used for bathrooms, or other wet areas such as splashbacks, spas and pools. 

It is possible to use the material in these areas, but it’s important to bear in mind that it has a naturally porous surface and therefore isn’t waterproof. It’s recommended to use a variation of Venetian plaster called Tadelakt, which is less porous and more water resistant. 

Tadelakt is a lime-based plaster that originates from Morocco, and retains all the beauty and charm of Venetian plaster. This brings a timeless yet contemporary feel to a bathroom or spa room and creates the perfect mood for soul restoring self care and relaxation. 

Alternatively, polished plaster can be finished with a sealant that makes it water resistant. This would make it suitable for areas where water is splashed, such as surrounding sinks or pools, but not where it would be exposed to prolonged streams of water or submerged, such as a shower enclosure or bath. 

If the plaster has not been properly sealed with a wax top coat, it will absorb moisture easily,  which will leave it prone to cracking, mould, and discolouration. Once Venetian plaster has been sealed, it provides a low maintenance and mould-resistant surface that can be easily wiped clean. 

It is recommended that all bathrooms and other wet areas have a good ventilation system in place to control humidity levels and prevent moisture from causing mildew to develop on surfaces. If the surface becomes damp from humidity or splashes, wipe it down with a soft dry cloth.

It’s important to ensure that the Venetian plaster is correctly applied, as any flaws can cause moisture to permeate the surface. It is skilled work that requires practice, so consider working with a professional installer to ensure that you have a good result. 

They will be able to make recommendations for which products will work best for your space, and you will have peace of mind that the end result will not only look beautiful but also be long lasting.

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