With good weather just around the corner, many homeowners are looking to boost the curb appeal of their properties. Those with interior or exterior stucco surfaces face a unique challenge. While this cement-based construction material has a gorgeous natural finish, it can become stained or faded over time, leaving homes looking worse for wear.
Our Top Paint for Stucco
If you’re thinking of touching up your stucco surfaces, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve talked with the experts to bring you a comprehensive guide to painting stucco and reviews of the top three stucco paints.
1. Kilz Masonry, Stucco, & Brick Paint in Tan – Best Overall
Kilz’s tan Masonry, Stucco, & Brick Paint is exactly what you need to refresh your interior or exterior stucco walls. Kilz is a high-quality acrylic latex paint with a water base.
It adheres nicely while offering unmatched protection against water, mildew, and sunlight.
The self-priming formula has excellent hiding properties. What’s more, it is designed to accentuate the natural texture of both smooth and rough surfaces. The paint is even alkali-resistant up to a pH of 12.0. Overall, it is an excellent match for porous masonry that needs to breathe.
The water-based formula accentuates all naturally textured surfaces, giving them a renewed but natural look. However, you do not take the time to prepare surfaces and removing any dirt or debris before painting on Kilz masonry paint.
One gallon oF Kilz masonry paint covers 250 to 400 square feet. Its coverage rate varies depending on the surface texture you are working with.
As one of the most revered paint brands in America, Kilz has a growing and incredibly loyal customer base. This paint is super easy to apply. It can be rolled, brushed, or sprayed to uplift any stucco surface with ease.
- Covers 250 to 400 square feet per gallon
- Alkali-resistant up to pH 12
- Accentuates textured surfaces
- Covers stains
- Resists stains, water, and mildew
- Difficult to spread
2. RAE Masonry & Stucco Paint in Beige – Best Bargain
This gorgeous beige masonry and stucco paint by RAE is a great choice when it comes to DIY projects. Rae Masonry & Stucco Paint is a water-based acrylic formula that is engineered for interior and exterior above-grade surfaces.
It is a paint and primer all in one, making it one of the most superior stucco coatings on the market.
One of the things we love about RAE Masonry & Stucco Paint is that it offers superior hiding. It fills pores and small cracks, giving stucco a completely renewed aesthetic. It is also super easy to apply. Applications can be aplied via brush, roller, or sprayer. Sand beige is a lovely stucco color. However, the paint can also be tinted to match nearly any color.
Once cured, this paint resists alkali, mold, and mildew. It holds up well after continuous exposure to the elements, including exposure to rain, snow, ice, and sunlight.
- Superior hiding properties
- Paint and primer in one
- Easy water cleanup
- Beautiful color
- Dries and cures rapidly
- Requires specific environment conditions
3. INSL-X AMW100009A-01 Waterblock Acrylic Masonry Waterproofer – Best for Exterior Surfaces
Don’t let the name deter you, INSL-X AMW100009A-01 is a powerful water-blocking acrylic paint that’s designed to go over all sorts of masonry, stucco included. That’s why this is our go-to paint for exterior stucco surfaces, including exterior walls, basement walls, foundations, and retaining walls.
Each gallon of INSL-X AMW100009A-01 offers 75 to 125 square feet of coverage. However, this depends on the texture of the surface being painted. It adheres nicely to both smooth and rough surfaces.
It boasts superior hiding capabilities, as it is an all-in-one primer and paint.
When applied correctly, INSL-X can withstand up to 12 PSI of hydrostatic pressure. It dries quickly and is alkali-resistant, making it the perfect paint for places with frequent rainfall. Keep in mind that INSL-X AMW100009A-01 is not suitable for floors.
INSL-X is a leader in primers and specialty coating market, and their stucco paint doesn’t disappoint. If you’re looking for a way to improve your faded, stained, or otherwise retrograde exterior stucco surfaces, this paint may be exactly what you are looking for.
- Seals vertical masonry surfaces, including stucco
- Can withstand up to 12 PSI of hydrostatic pressure
- Resistant to mold and mildew
- Resistant to alkali
- Not ideal for interior surfaces
How to Choose the Best Paint for Stucco Surfaces
With so many paint products on the market, it can be difficult for consumers to hone in on the perfect one for stucco surfaces. We’ve spent hours consulting with several homes and masonry experts in hopes of identifying the top paint products for stucco, and we’re pretty excited to share our findings with you.
While stucco is extremely low maintenance, it sometimes succumbs to the natural elements or heavy wear. That’s why we made sure that our product recommendations are all fit to cover imperfections and poor paint choices.
First off, you need to identify the challenges that are specific to your painting project. Start by establishing where you’ll be painting. Most paints are either suitable for interior or exterior paint jobs. Exterior paints must be able to withstand constant exposure to the elements. Meanwhile, interior paints must be suitable for use within areas with limited ventilation.
Stucco is made of cement, sand, plaster, and water. It is in popular exterior for homes, particularly throughout the Southwest. It is also used on interior walls and surfaces.
Check to see how much coverage your chosen paint offers. A gallon of masonry paint usually offers 75 to 150 square feet of coverage. However, coverage rates vary depending on the texture of your painting surface.
Most experts recommend applying at least two coats of paint to stucco, or that you use a primer and paint.
You may be able to spread your paint a little further by using a primer-paint combo. In the very least, use a manufacturer’s estimated coverage rates to determine how much paint you need to purchase. Many masonry coatings are available in quart, 1-gallon, and 5-gallon sizes.
Some stucco coatings come with built-in stain-blocking primers. These prevent the stains from showing through the base layer of paint. Common stucco stains include watermarks, unwanted color, mildew, and mold.
Acrylic resins offer superior durability when applied to exterior vertical surfaces. Acrylic paints expand and shrink, offering a level of flexibility and breathability that cannot be watched by the oil-based alternatives. What’s more, acrylic does not break down easily.
All masonry coatings need to allow water vapor to escape. Therefore, you need to choose a reliable water-based acrylic-, lime-, or mineral-based coating for your stucco. Cement also has a high pH, which is why you’ll see so many paints with alkali-resistant primers built into them.
Ease of Application
One of the most comment complaints regarding stucco paints is that they are often difficult to spread. If you have arthritis or simply don’t want to be bothered with a super goopy product, opt for a primer-free paint.
Keep in mind that the weather can have a big impact on your paint job.
So, be sure to read and follow the manufacturer’s warnings regarding humidity and temperate. Excess moisture may prevent your paint from curing properly.
Health and Safety
Paint has become more environmentally friendly over the years. There are now strict regulations on the use of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and other chemical ingredients. If you’re looking for a paint that does not produce unsafe and unbearable fumes, opt for a water-based acrylic coating.
Answers to All Your Most Pressing Stucco Paint Questions
Can stucco be painted?
Many people do not know that stucco can be painted. That’s because this natural surface is often left untreated. The material holds up well in all sorts of climates.
However, it is not impervious to mold, mildew, and other damages.
Homeowners may paint their stucco to change the look of their home or cover wear and damages.
My stucco walls have build-outs and unique textures, can I still paint them?
Yes, but be sure to choose a coating that is capable of penetrating all of the indents and raised elements on your stucco walls.
My paint is peeling, what did I do wrong?
Stucco surfaces readily absorb moisture. If you paint over a stucco surface that contains water, then the water will be trapped beneath the paint. Over time, fluctuations in heat and humidity may cause the paint to peel.
Can stucco paint cover cracks?
While some stucco coatings are capable of sealing hairline fractures and pores, we recommend that you patch any cracks or holes before painting. You’re sure to get a more uniform finish.
Does stucco have to be sealed and painted?
There is little doubt that stucco is a durable surface. However, high-quality masonry paint will help you improve the overall look of your home.
What instruments can I use to apply a stucco coating?
Most stucco paints can be applied with various painting instruments, including nylon brushes, foam rollers, and paint sprayers. Most people use a variety of instruments to ensure that they do not leave any exposed areas. For example, a sprayer may be used to cover wide surfaces. However, a small brush may be used to cover corners and other areas that are more difficult to access.
Do I have to clean ststucco surfaces before painting?
The thing about stucco is that it is super porous. If you do not remove dirt, peeling paint, and other imperfections before painting, you might not get that solid adherence you were looking to achieve. Get your hands on a quality pressure washer (they rent these at most home improvement stores) and take the time to clean all your stucco.
You might have to spend a little more, but you’ll save yourself from the headache of otherwise inevitable peeling paint.
I just laid down my stucco, can I still paint it?
Covers made of cement take time to cure. Wait at least two months to ensure that your stucco has fully hardened before painting.
How should I go about painting different stucco textures?
If your stucco is super rough, you may need to use a roller with a ¾ inch or 11/4 inch thick nap. Smooth stucco surfaces can be painted with thin nap rollers and other painting instruments.
Are coverage rates generally accurate?
Your paint container says it is capable of covering up to 450 square feet of stucco. Could this be true? Impressive coverage rates like this generally apply to smooth, nonporous surfaces. You can lose a large percentage of your paint to pores and otherwise textured surfaces.
Should the pH level of my stucco impact my decision to paint?
Most experts do not recommend painting stucco surfaces with high pH levels. You may wish to test the pH of your stucco before painting, as levels under 10 are generally suitable for coating. Keep in mind that there is a wide range of things that can impact the pH of stucco. What’s more, there are things you can do, such as frequent watering, to reduce the acidity of this type of surface. If you’re not going to test your stucco, keep an eye out for lime and alkali burns or efflorescence. These sorts of stains may cause your paint to peel or bubble.
We hope you enjoyed our roundup of the top paints for stucco. If we had to choose just one to recommend, it would have to be Kilz Masonry, Stucco, & Brick Paint in tan. This paint offers excellent coverage, going so far as to cover stains and other imperfections with a single stroke. It also adheres excellently and offers unmatched protection from the elements. Your buddies will think you hired a professional. Yet, you’ll have saved enough money to cap your project off with a few celebratory beers.
If you’re really in the home improvement zone, you might also like to check out our best deck stains and paints.