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A person painting down the edge of a plasterboard wall next to a tiled wall with masking tape

Overview

The easiest way to give your bathroom a makeover is by giving it a fresh coat of paint. This step-by-step guide will show you how to paint your bathroom walls and ceilings without making a mess.

Be sure to choose paints that are specifically designed for bathrooms and kitchens. They can cope with the high humidity and have additives that protect against mould and mildew. It's also important to keep your bathroom well-ventilated while you're painting.

Steps

1Cover your fittings

Before you start, cover all the fittings in your bathroom with plastic to prevent paint splatters getting on them. Also, make sure you put down a drop sheet. 

A person covering a showerhead with a plastic bag

2Prepare your painting surface

If you've got any mould, get rid of it with a bleach solution before you begin. You'll need to sand the top coat on your plaster walls and ceiling before you paint. Use a sanding pad and 150-grit sandpaper for a nice even finish. Then wipe down the surfaces with a cloth to get the dust off. Always wear eye protection and a dust mask when sanding. 

A person wearing a mask sanding a join in a plaster ceiling

3Apply painters tape to floor and wall edges

Put some painter's tape down along the edges of any floor or wall tiles to stop any paint getting on them and to keep your paint lines straight when you're cutting in.
A person applying masking tape along the top of a tiled wall

4Start by cutting in the edge

When painting a surface, always start by cutting in the edges. Use a cutting in brush, which is cut on an angle, to make sure you get an even, clean job. Apply your undercoat to all the edges. Make sure you've got adequate ventilation while you paint – open doors and windows, and use your bathroom exhaust fan. 

A person painting down the edge of a plasterboard wall next to a tiled wall with masking tape

5Apply undercoat to the ceiling

After cutting in your ceiling and walls, paint the ceiling with the undercoat. Use a roller for good coverage when painting larger surfaces. Make sure you keep the flat surface of the roller on the wall side when rolling, so the metal bracket doesn't damage your wall.

A ceiling being painted with an extension roller, with masking tape around the wall edges

6Apply undercoat to the walls

Once you've done the ceiling, start painting your walls with the undercoat. Follow the same process from Step 5 and leave to dry before applying your top coat.
A person painting a plasterboard wall with undercoat using a roller

7Apply the topcoats

Once the undercoat is dry, apply your top coat the same way you applied the undercoat in Steps 46. Start by cutting in your ceiling and walls again along your marking tape. Then paint the ceiling using your roller, applying an even paint spread. Let the first coat dry and then give the ceiling a final top coat.

8Apply the paint colour

If the wall colour is different to your ceiling, you'll need to thoroughly clean all of your painting gear so that you don't mix your paint colours. Tape the ceiling up along the wall join to protect your new paint, and then cut in your wall edges (see Step 4). Now, roll your first top coat onto the walls and let it dry. Add a second coat, especially if it's a dark colour. When the second coat is dry, remove all the tape from your walls and you're done!
A person painting a plasterboard wall a stone colour using a roller

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Health & Safety

Please make sure you use all equipment appropriately and safely when following the advice in these D.I.Y. videos. You need to be familiar with how to use equipment safely and follow the instructions that came with the equipment. If you are unsure, you may feel it is safest to consult an expert, such as the manufacturer or an expert Bunnings Team Member.

Grave health hazards are linked to asbestos, which may be in homes built up to 1990. Health hazards may result from exposure to lead-based paints in older materials and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer. You can also use a simple test kit from Bunnings to indicate the presence of lead-based paint.